Despite controversy over Minecraft and its continuous success, one thing is certain – The 16 bit blocks set a cornerstone for Voxel games in the industry. Terraria and Starbound took to a side scrolling building adventure, while bigger games like Eden Star, Everquest Next and Landmark for Everquest have applied building as a main focus to involve the community. However, one game stands above the rest. Trove is the first Voxel based MMO published by Trion Worlds, responsible for other MMO’s such as Archeage, Defiance, and Rift.
Although Trove is geared for younger players, the game is designed to stay interesting for all ages. With a wide variety of gamers and ever changing worlds, Trove’s looking to be a very successful MMO.
Due to the angle that the development took, there isn’t much of a story to start out in Trove. As soon as a class is decided, you are released into a passive world called the Hub and, from there, are able to enter different levels of difficult lands, entering player made dungeons and wearing player made gear. Some ‘Club Worlds’ or ‘guilds’- for MMO vets, may incorporate roleplay to create a story, but other than that, there is no base story for Trove.
However, even with the lack of narrative, I have spent countless hours playing a game that looks like repetitive nonsense from an outsider’s point of view. In fact, I never truly thought about the shortage of plot. What it lacks in that area, it makes up for in so much else. As a high story based player, it’s a big deal when I say I do love this MMO despite there not being one.
Gameplay is clearly the highlight of Trove. Through dungeons, levels, and gear, you can be a high level player in no time. Filling out achievements, maxing out gear, and building your voxel home is just the tip of the iceberg for what you can do in this game.
Zones: Right now, there are eight different zones to explore in Trove, varying in colour and style. You fight through lollipop men, skeletons, flaming bats, dark fairies and many other enemies for loot and levels. Depending on the zone you’re in are designated recipe dungeons that unlock a craftable object from that area.
Achievements: I have always been driven by achievements, even before they became a set goal in games. When I first started playing Trove, I was overwhelmed with how many things I could collect and build! The player is provided ‘primary blocks’ and they are also easy to obtain, but there are so many craftable objects that it’s almost pointless to build until you unlock them all. Zone Recipes, seasonal recipes, and block recipes can be unlocked through dungeons and mining for materials. If you are lucky, some will even come out of chests that are dropped at specific times.My favorite set of achievements are the mounts you can obtain. Oh yeah, there are mounts. Though this is a voxel game, blocks of different sizes help form more defined shapes and thus, have REALLY cute mounts. Horses, Raptors, bouncing balls, and magic carpets are just a few of the many objects you can work at or buy for Flux – the player designated currency.
Building: Building is not only available but encouraged. Developers have made it clear that they want people to build, as it is the main focus of the game. An interesting feature in Trove is the cornerstone’s each account has. Blank 16×16 squares are scattered around the worlds for any player to adopt, putting their own ‘cornerstone’ home from temporary save points in case you die. Within this square, you are able to build extremely low and high, whatever you wish. Putting your plot down also allows others to come and experience your creations without the ability to destroy it or take anything. There are also whole club worlds where, if given the permission (or you are the owner) you can build whatever you want, however big you want with a variety of coloured, shiny, metallic, glass, or neon blocks.
Updates: Trion is very good at listening to the community and updating the game accordingly. New classes, weapons, and armor are constantly put in, as well as recipes for new decorations. The coolest thing about all of this is – all of it is community made. Through a voxel builder program, anyone can create anything to be a candidate for the game.
Being a voxel game, the graphics style is set in stone. Boxy visuals are an acquired taste among some gamers, however, it gives the game a childlike feel, and it runs very smoothly. The music changes based on the zone you are in, but blends well and gives a reminiscent vibe of older games.
The game sounds in Trove are more helpful than they are in most games, chiming every time an item drops that you may not have seen. It also gives satisfying sound effects when attacking, jumping, and using your mounts, but it can also lean more on the annoying side.
Though there is no story and the game itself is designed to gear for a younger audience, I have found myself, as well as several other adults, play this game for weeks on end. It’s easy to stop playing and pick up again without missing too much. A weeks worth of gaming can catch you up on the latest items. It would take a regularly updated guide to keep up with everything going on in this game, and it’s just in Beta. Who knows what changes await upon release. There is good news. Trove is open Beta, meaning anyone can join. So when in need of a relaxing game, or have an itch to build with countless others, or just addicted to achievement driven games, Trove may be the game to check out.