Once upon a time in his own little world far, far away, a man by the name of Michael C. was asked by his girlfriend to play Minecraft. What did the great hero reply? “Eh, it’s not my kind of game.” “I’m not that creative.” “Hey, let’s play this instead!” Let’s just say he probably could write a good book about getting out of Minecraft-related commitments. (Sorry Minecraft, I do recognize you as a good game.) After quite a few talks and bickering about the subject, the protagonist and his girlfriend finally came to a stalemate and casually agreed upon settling with a similar substitute: Guncraft: Blocked and Reloaded. That event happened a year ago, when the game’s release seemed so far away. Finally, though, time has drawn close to the release of Guncraft on Xbox 360, so it’s time for Michael to hold up his end of the compromise.
Upon turning the game on for the first time, the menu screen immediately startled him. “What’s going on here?” he thought to himself briefly. “How hard can a game with guns be to figure out?” he wondered before jumping straight into a match without searching for any help options. Surprisingly, it was a bit jarring. Run was mapped to the left bumper, building blocks were on the B button and he had no idea what was going on. While following a long-held tradition of Achievement hunting, he proceeded to ask his girlfriend a few questions. “So is this like Minecraft?” She shrugged in response.
After about 10 minutes of play, Michael started to get frustrated at being lost in a level supposedly designed for 2-4 players. To him, the level was too walled in and too hard to find proper entrances to go from room to room. Out of frustration, he mashed random buttons and a grenade was eventually tossed at a wall. After a few seconds, parts of the wall blew up. A lightbulb turned on in his mind. After spending the rest of the match busting through walls like the Kool-Aid man, he though, “I could get used to this.”
Smiling and laughing, he pointed while his girlfriend shrugged and rolled her eyes at him for acting like a child with a new toy. Fast forward to the next match when a carnival stage was chosen. His girlfriend picked up a controller, and the two set out to explore the land in a Deathmatch room. He asked her to show off some Minecraft skills and to reach the top of the building where a mysterious helicopter lay waiting. After she fell to her death a few times, the pair skipped the helicopter and moved on to their next random endeavor.
She asked a simple Minecraft question. “Is there Bedrock?” The mighty protagonist proclaimed, “I know how to make your Bedrock!” After 10 long seconds during which Michael could have sworn he heard actual crickets chirping, the pair started using their rocket launchers to break the ground in search of Bedrock. At some point, both players individually fell from one of the many holes in the ground and came to learn there was nothing below the lava except empty air, through which they fell off the world to their demise. The couple went on to spend the rest of the day visiting various maps and trying different modes in the wide blocky world of Guncraft.
Part of creation is tearing apart the old stuff to start anew. The couple from our story created disaster-pieces from destroying the terrain, and that destruction felt good. Largely thanks to the option for turning on infinite resources in match settings, players can easily demolish to their hearts’ desire. Corner campers be wary, corners can be easily destroyed.
With all of the carnage and mayhem going on, I haven’t had an opportunity to try the building aspects. I took a quick peek at the building options and it was more than I could handle. My girlfriend and I ended our day playing the Onslaught mode, which functions as the game’s horde mode. That’s a story for another time, though. So much to do, so little time to try it all.
Stay tuned for part 2: Construction, in which Guncraft: Blocked and Loaded‘s building and customization features are tried out.