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Terraria reset: Fresh world, big possibilities

"Zombies? Floating eyeballs? I'm staying on this table." Being a designer by profession, I feel that it is my personal duty to remind every one of you that it is indeed fun to make stuff. Build. Realize. Create. Assemble. Plunk down in a wide, overhand windmill arc with a sharp, satisfying thud. Terraria-style.

OMGeek's Terraria server has just been restarted, and we have a huge, undeveloped world waiting for you to carve up and explore. Whether you like to build houses or sewer tunnels or uncomfortably phallic monuments, we've got you covered.

Let me remind everyone as well that Terraria isn't just Minecraft with one dimension missing; it's an action-adventure platformer that just so happens to have a building and resource gathering mechanic similar to Notch's tree-punching Java-driven horror opus. Terraria features bosses, dungeons, floating islands in the sky and the ever-popular barbie doll dress-up in addition to what Minecraft offers. It also has top hats. TOP HATS.

You'd think a classy hat would be one of the first things Notch would have coded into Minecraft.

But enough about him.

For now.

What I really like about Terraria is the wealth of choices in playstyle it provides. There's so much to do in the game, and after that first frantic night of banging together a wooden shanty for shelter against the zombies and the Flying Eyeballs of Death, the game opens up to accomodate what I've classified into six different playstyles. These aren't exclusive, and most players will exhibit the characteristics of two or three of the following:

EXPLORER Actually, he was named after the family dog. These players are driven by the desire to find interesting new places (which Terraria readily provides). Whether it's a swampy marsh deep in the jungle, or an underground cavern with flowing lava, or a floating island in the sky, Explorers want to see them all.

ADVENTURER Killer legs optional. Of course, Adventurers also do some exploring. What motivates them to do so, however, is the promise of new swag and new critters to brutally massacre. Adventurers care less about landmasses in the sky and more about dungeons full of skeletons. Adventurers will also seek out the game's bosses for the sport of it.

MINER CAN YOU DIG IT? I can think of two explanations for the appeal of mining. One: Miners want to hit stuff--stuff that doesn't hit back. Fair enough. Two: Miners experience a certain kind of catharsis in breaking down and essentially relocating portions of their world and ordering them in a manner to their liking. Shit, I don't know. I'm not a Miner.

Which brings us to...

BUILDER Fine, that "dig it" thing was pretty bad. But JESUS IS ON MY SIDE. I'm a Builder player. I like to build things with the junk the miner gathered. You know who else was a Builder? Yeah.

COLLECTOR EPILEPSY AND SCREAMING Collectors tag along with the explorers and adventurers and grab anything remotely interesting in sight. They gather materials, craft rare items, and then stick them into boxes. And these boxes are neatly lined up on a giant room-sized shelf. Sometimes there are signs beside these boxes. Like in a collection.

POWERGAMER This pic is its own caption. Powergamers make it their personal mission to wring out the most powerful weapons and items from the game by any means necessary. You can spot a Powergamer easily from his full suit of awesome-looking armor, his lightning-fast running speed, his jetpack, his ridiculously huge gun, and his flaming sword of annihilation that extends two stories high when swung.

Our little list ends here.

Players will naturally gravitate towards some of these playstyles, and it makes for a very interesting dynamic when they all populate a single server and everyone tries to do their thing. It's almost like having a miniature society. Only in 2D. And with top hats. You can find out much about a person's personality by the way they play Terraria. I'm serious!

If you already own Terraria, join our server! Let's colonize, exploit and bicker over a brand new world together. Newly created characters only, please. It helps set the pioneering spirit.

And if you've yet to experience this game, here is a handy-dandy link to its Steam page for you to mull over.

What kind of player will YOU be? See you inside!

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