The games development company Snail Games have really pulled out all stops and created what seems like the perfect fusion of the 2 titles. The general theme of the visuals in the marketing so far seem to suggest it will have a very cartoony feel to it like in Portal Knights. The gameplay footage available to the public does seem to show a lot of tamable creatures (more than 100 according to this wiki page) that will keep the player entertained trying to collect them all.
So Could PixARK Really Be The Next Minecraft?
PixARK has the potential to become the successor to the title of “best sandbox game” if it manages to push the limits that Minecraft set. This would mean that the game needs to look and feel better, which shouldn’t be too hard as Minecraft is getting pretty old now.
The other major feature it needs to bring in that would help it overtake Minecraft is the ability for the game to evolve through modding. Without having to do much work, Mojang and then Microsoft rarely had to update the game in order for it to grow. The modding community kept the game moving along through intense alterations to the games mechanics as well as the visuals
If Snail Games can create the ultimate modding platform for coders then they could get sales simply from the appeal of the mods. The visuals in the game look amazing right now in the videos but will it still look at smart in 2023?
If you can chuck all of this in with decent third party server hosting support available to everyone then the game has a good chance of competing with Minecraft. This isn't too say that minecraft could respond heavily with a major update or a Minecraft 2.0 with built in features only seen in mods and all sorts of upgrades that we can only dream about. Microsoft need to make the investment in Minecraft pay off as much as possible and a sequel would be ideal.
Overview of features that need to be perfected for it to compete with Minecraft:
- Modding ability - can the community access parts of the game mechanics to be able to alter the game heavily if needed?
- Textures - will everything in the game be customisable in terms of visuals? Texture packs are very popular with many websites arising featuring them
- Character customisation - can you change your character when playing online to change your online persona? You currently can do this with Minecraft but the whole process is a bit clunky and would be difficult matching up a skin for your character made in Microsoft Paint with the modern graphics of PixARK
- Third party server hosting - can you set up servers on your own machine or on dedicated servers provided by companies? With healthy competition among companies you can then find well priced ready to go packages
- Story Mode - Minecraft doesn’t possess a story mode, so anything is better than nothing, although a customizable story mode would be amazing