Tuesday, October 19th, 2021

Hands-on: Created GameCube Pad with Minecraft style farm sim “Staxel”

image: Evan Amos

Gather people for a story of love, loss, and failure: There has never been a more dire story of Kate and her GameCube controller.

Let’s back up a little. “It was Friday night after a long and tired week. My partner and I sat down on the Staxel game, a type of Minecraft-Animal Crossing-Harvest Moon hybrid that will be released on September 23. It’s made entirely of Staxel. It was the 20th anniversary week of GameCube, so to celebrate everyone’s favorite game shape, we decided to build a GameCube controller and test the collaborative aspects of the game. I did (or pitched it to the editor). It’s not a cube yet.

My partner (I call him Dycy because he calls himself) and I played quite a bit of Minecraft when we were long distance. Our work included an impressive nether train system and an iceberg-themed polar bear pen. We are not strictly master architects, but we hope you understand that we are not a complete beginner when it comes to architecture.

I know this Minecraft version isn't very impressive, but it was.
I know this Minecraft version isn’t very impressive, but it was.

Working with Staxel was a bit tricky. Learning the ropes of a new game always takes time, but Staxel can be more user-friendly. It may sound strange, but for games that were heavily influenced by Mojang’s games, it would have been nice to have a few games. more Especially the similarities in how to play. In fact, the ultimate failure of us was the difference between Staxel and Minecraft.

But don’t go beyond yourself.

As you can see, Minecraft is all about mining blocks, smelting, crafting, and joining new blocks, but Staxel is a little more. granular.. Minecraft has one craft table. There are 12 Staxels, and each craft bench has a verb from “assemble” or “carve” to “combine” or “assemble”. Cooking is further complicated by the need for separate 3-tile benches for chopping, boiling, frying, mixing and baking. To be honest, many of them look like synonyms for the same thing, but every recipe you have at least tells you what you need to use.

I'm really looking for more indigo, in fact ...
I’m really looking for more indigo, in fact …

Fortunately, you can buy most of what you need. There are two shops in the center of Staxel town, one selling a lot of things and the other … selling a lot of other things. Sure, the line between the two is ambiguous, but it worked in our favor because we needed a lot to build the GameCube controller.

If this is Minecraft, head deep into the globe to find the right block for your purpose (probably a nice purple concrete, or amethyst if you’re feeling fancy), but in Staxel it’s much farther than everything. Is easier to buy. Everything from tools to furniture is already made for you, and if you have the courage to browse very small things in the store, you will be kitted out soon.

sorry!But also thank you
sorry!But also thank you

We bought all purple in the store, and none of it was perfectly correct purple. Fortunately, there’s another feature that Staxel has never seen before. It’s a feature that robs people of their homes.Don’t take away from People’s homes, be careful — in fact, steal the home itself, brick by brick.You see, there was a chap in town that had just a roof Exactly The correct shade of GameCube Purple stole his roof like a common copper thief looting the church.

Minecraft does allow you to destroy villagers’ homes, but it doesn’t make you Enter the menu Select an option to do so and get a warning that you should only mess with the game building if you “know what you are doing”. Then it feels like a crime.

It’s time to get and build the bricks, so I decided to choose a vertical GameCube controller. It is better to see it from a distance. While I was shopping, my partner started cleaning up small lots of land and creating a large, very ugly soil lining where the controller could be placed. So far, so good!

He began to outline controller-like shapes and continued to complain that he should have made a GameCube instead, or at least the GameCube logo, but he was a coward who wanted to escape in an easy way. I said that.Build something already Looks like a big voxel.

Then it was button and stick time. Unlike Minecraft, you can’t put things anywhere you like. I was disappointed to find some of the in-game items, such as the red food bowl, the red checker token, and the little stool.Would have made Perfect Small B button — Could not be placed horizontally.

You'll be together, right?
You’ll be together, right?

We were beginning to lose momentum and morale, especially when the days quickly turned into nights and we couldn’t see anything, let alone which purple to use. Even in the daytime, all the lights, including the inside of the store, are dull and orange-yellow, making it difficult to judge the color and shape. Then there’s the fact that the character can’t go through gaps that aren’t at least two blocks wide, and the fact that the store seems to be updating inventory randomly and it’s hard to buy any more, which is small but annoying. There were details. I needed that one block.

At this point, the game told us that “something” was happening in town — and “something” was the magic that took us to a place called Fairy Island, where everything was pink. Turned out to be a bunch of portals. Pink isn’t purple, so we left, but it was nice to go to a place that wasn’t the same small island we spawned.

Hmm, pink? No thank you.
Hmm, pink? No thank you.

Return to the controller.It was at least until this point that we started getting very I’m dissatisfied with the playing experience because Staxel’s inventory management can be a pain in the ax.

Everything is small. There is no storage. Selling things is a tedious process, you have to put one object on the stand and select “Sell” one by one. Also, the inventory is always full of hoes and hammers, as there are so many different tools that are all monotaskers. , Pickaxes, shovels, and 10 billion different craft recipes and tables you need. With a week of groceries in my arms, half of the instructions were missing and I felt like I was trying to make an IKEA bed with 15 times as many hex wrenches as I needed.

But nevertheless, we managed it. Hooray! I created a GameCube controller.

And a tragedy struck.

Seconds from disaster
Seconds from disaster

I started destroying the clay wall behind the controller I put there for stability, but this was the beginning of the end as it was clearly a load-bearing wall.

The controller exploded into a voxel confetti, and so our job, the horrifying masterpiece, is gone. I got the block back, but the pad time has passed. I made a small tomb for a fallen controller, consisting of a large purple “RIP” visible from space. Given the gaming experience, you can’t go back to Staxel right away. In fact, I don’t even know if I can. The screen will indicate that you have “finished the game” for about 30 minutes.

I’d like to say that this was somehow a good compliment to the GameCube on my 20th birthday, but I think it would have been better to make a cake with purple icing. It wouldn’t have been necessary to steal the roof of the neighbor for that.

Staxel will be available at the Nintendo Switch eShop on September 23rd.