Survivalcraft and the small matter of stamina…

Over on the Survivalcraft blog Kaalus had been getting into the nitty gritty of making his game more about surviving and it seems he’s pinning his hopes on, amongst other things, a stamina mechanic that will see you tire as you run, jump & climb and frankly I’m torn on this.

On the plus side it will introduce the need to better manage your surroundings to ensure you don’t run out of breath and get munched by a bear. Things like horses and crafted steps are going to be important and that’s OK. Sort of…

On the negative side this seems like it’s going to be the type of grindy mechanic I’ve come to hate over the past few years. It has the real potential to be nothing more than a brake on my gameplay where I have to stop and start for no other reason than I happen to be out exploring.

Take this example: I want to set up a new emergency shelter and right now all I’d need to do is set off in the morning and head in one direction until nightfall and then build. After the next update I’ll have to stop every few hundred steps and rest for a few seconds and that, above anything else, is going to piss me off. I mean, its not as if I can choose to walk instead of run as this game only has one speed! So simply getting from A to B will now mean I either have to get a horse or accept a stop-start experience.

Then get a horse you may say, but that’s a mechanic I’ve never really liked. I’m happy to have a corral and ride a few horses but I don’t want to be dependant on them and I feel the use of stamina is going to force me to be just that.

And this is the crux of my unhappiness with the game, which, by the way, I have hardly played since 1.21 came out. I feel that there are more mechanics coming into the game that I’m being forced into using rather than being given the option. Horses are pretty & fun to toy with but I don’t want the hassle of riding them full time. Being tired after running a lot is interesting, but not when all I can do is run. Drowning is cool, but I’d rather see it happen when diving rather than just swimming across a lake.

To me, these changes are not really about survival but rather more about padding the game out, which is a damn shame. I’d rather see true survival mechanics such as the need to farm & manage resources, the need to explore to gather certain materials and make certain accouterments, and, ultimately, escape the sodding island. What we are getting are ways of grinding out more time in the game.

For me right now, SC has dropped off my play list. MCPE might well take its place when it next updates but until then I’m heading back to the PC I think.