“From Dust”

I recently downloaded a trial for this strange little titbit on PSN and I am very tempted to buy it.
“From dust” is a luscious, original and strangely addictive game. At first I thought it was going to be a kind of mix between “Black and White” and “Age of Empires” (The former I was no good at, the latter I found boring.)
What I got was a huge surprise. The game begins with a tribal summoning, forming a bubble that explodes into the “Breath of the World”. Your job is essentially to protect the tribe that summoned you and create their world out of different kinds of matter. These include Sand, Water and even Lava.
The expansion of the tribe depends on the Breath’s movement of matter to create rivers, islands and stop tidal waves from completely eradicating the village.

My room mate likened it to Minecraft. Although Minecraft is revolutionary and yadda yadda, I couldn’t help being a bit irked. From Dust is a beautifully intuitive and tactile experience. The terrain is deliciously organic and reactive to the player’s whims. The world feels like it’s living and the textures and animation reflect that beautifully and the villagers grow their village structures and crops through music. The moving of matter is also interesting, as the sand or otherwise is sucked up like a vacuum and forms a flowing sphere that can be deposited at will.

Although it just sounds like excavation, there is a certain magical air to the world and a wonderful, fitting soundtrack that compliments the almost aboriginal art style perfectly.

The other amazing thing is the way the earth reacts to other elements, like water, like sinking, eroding and falling like real sand. I know as a prospective developer I should be able to fault this game, but as of yet I haven’t found anything to negatively critique. If I complete the full version I shall come back to it then.

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