Podcast-Illustration-0121This week on the TouchArcade Show, we battle through discussions about cargo pants, the piracy high horse, and bleaching our hair in order to bring you the latest and the most ill in iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch. At the top, we talk about SurvivalCraft and how it doesn't add anything new to the Minecraft formula it copies. Also, we give some time to Sorcery!, Angry Birds Friends, Heads Up and more. Yep! We were on-topic this week! Yay!

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Direct Link: TouchArcadeShow-102.mp3, 37.8MB

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  • Nick

    I'm surprised at the impressions about survivalcraft. It may not be better than Minecraft PC, but as far as what it brings to the table on mobile, minecraft PE doesn't even come close.

    It's like Minecraft PE is a decent model car, maybe a Lexus, with the absolute bare bones basics, and on top of that it's missing a stereo and only has 2 seats, no trunk and there are no glove boxes.

    Survivalcraft is a Toyota corolla, but has leather seats, a in dash computer and GPS with thumping speakers, heated seats with massage and electric controls, spinning rims and a passenger seat butler.

    Notch is brilliant and Minecraft PC can't be touched, but the fact that PE is sitting in the App Store with limited worlds, In both actual scope and features, versus Survivals extensive modes, unlimited world, massive cave systems and so on, PLUS is $3 cheaper and has, at least currently, a fairly active developer is something that the App Store DEARLY needs, and is the only thing that people pining for a minecraft product that doesn't feel the equivalent of some evil orphanage throwing you a stale piece of bread when you tell them you are hungry.

  • Josh Dombro

    Great show guys, keeping my Fridays busy as always... Just wanted to say I love the idea you guys mentioned of removing games you own from the top charts. That could fix more than one problem in the app store and generally make it seems like Apple gives any kind of crap about their buyers.

  • paulkane

    Get xillx, son! ill!

  • grits

    From what I heard, Survivalcraft tops the iOS version of Minecraft in almost every way including player made textures, infinite worlds and much more. am I wrong?

    • Th3R3n3gad3

      Nope

  • Smartbomb

    Disappointed with you guys on this one, SC deserves better than that.

  • grits

    Hey Brad and Eli. Check out the forums and also what's coming in the next update. Apparently they're making it much more survival oriented to separate it even more from Minecraft. You are correct that it is practically a clone but also correct that it does all the things Minecraft fans were hoping pocket edition would do. And with the next update will differentiate themselves even more. I'm not a Minecraft Uber fan but I have played quite a bit. I did not play pocket edition but from what I hear this trumps it big time. I'd be curious to hear what you think after learning some more about it on the next podcast.
    Also… Giraffes LOL

    • grits

      Also as much money as they make Minecraft isn't supported at all. It's pretty pathetic. So in this case I think it's ok that an indie developer is doing what they will not. It's also hard to feel bad for a company that makes gazillions of dollars and yet doesn't support their product.

  • speedyph

    THANKS FOR THE GREAT PODCAST EVERY WEEK GLAD FOR UR HARD WORK

  • http://www.facebook.com/wahkiz Calvin Tam Wah Kit

    I am an ardent supporter of all things Minecraft, I bought MC during alpha, and bought MCPE at the first day of launch. However, I felt that although survivalcraft is a clone, it does almost everything that I wanted in MCPE.

    I am a hardcore redstoner in MC, so I tend to get disappointed everytime I notice there is no initiative from the mojang team to bring redstone to MCPE. Survivalcraft have electric circuits, and even included logic gates for good measure. I have to say, the guys at survivalcraft really did a great job here. However, I would prefer the vanilla experience of doing all that circuit my own using redstone torches.

    That said, Survivalcraft delivers what Mojang couldn't, with all the time they had. We must support whoever that brings the best to the table, not just blindly support a product because something is 'Official'.

    • grits

      Exactly. Sometimes I think journalists should do a little more digging before they form an opinion.

    • grits

      At the same time, I was skeptical at first too. Howevery, when thousands of people are listening and possibly you are causing developers to lose lots of sales based on uninformed opinions, that's bad.

      • http://twitter.com/JaredTA Jared Nelson

        A little more digging? For what exactly?

        As to your second comment: It's not our job to make sure games sell well, it's our job to give our opinions about games. Not sure what you think was uninformed about our opinions.

  • Sanitymops

    I am surprised at how baffled you all are at SurvivalCraft's popularity. The minecraft fans just want the minecraft PC experience on their phones/mobile devices. Unfortunately Majong dropped the ball on their release of Minecraft PE - which is extremely limited. SC shows that it is possible to hit that exploration/survival note and actually be immersive. Simply put, SC is a better version of Minecraft PE and it is currently offering something you can't get elsewhere on mobile.

    I am glad I found it and I am also grateful the Dev is active. Also, please note that the reason most people are loving on SC is because they already own and love Minecraft PC. I am willing to bet most of them also own every iteration of the genre on their mobiles too... just looking for something comparable.

    On a different note, I just want to thank you for putting out a great podcast. I have been lurking in the shadows since it first came out and it is really a much better podcast now than before. Great new opening song too. Keep up the good work!

    • grits

      Yeah, the podcast is great :)

  • http://twitter.com/putermcgee daniel schroeder

    man, brad was out of control this episode! hit up the gym, bro, and blow off that steam.

    fantastic show, as always.

  • http://www.youtube.com/MetalJesusRocks Metal Jesus Rocks

    What was the name of that chat/messaging app you guys recommended on the episode? I tried to find the section of the podcast where you mentioned it, but I can't find it. Thanks guys!

  • Christian Valentin

    Wow, why the Survivalcraft hate?

    Three main differences:
    1) Infinite worlds
    2) Actual cave systems and caverns
    3) Realistic atmosphere vs MC's most fantastic tone

    Plus I feel like this game is more immersive. The lightning is awesome and the dev is incredibly dedicated, constantly updating with the new features. The next update will add even more in-depth survival mechanics. I prefer the realistic tone compared to MCPE

    • Smartbomb

      One of the best games I've played on a tablet, the scope for fun and creativity is phenomenal, and despite the apparent limitations of portable hardware, this game delivers in spades beyond what is offered elsewhere in many contexts. Sure, it's not an original concept, much like a FPS isn't, and whilst there is a little truth that the game "offers nothing new", its not so much the truth itself that bothers me, rather how it is presented.

      In a scenario that we, as a community, look to news broadcasts to inform us about the world around us, imagine having a presenter telling us "we are all going to die" as opposed to "life is short and we should endeavour to make the most of it". Crap analogy perhaps, but still, when you have a respected and highly followed brand such as TA, it's a shame to see that influence cause unwarranted damage through what seems to be ignorance of sorts. Kaalus is a very dedicated, hard working developer whom highly respects and reveres his products' roots and provides an experience that cannot be found anywhere else on this type of hardware.

      It may not add much new to the desktop block builders out there, but damn, it brings so much more to the table when compared to MCPE.

      • Christian Valentin

        Hey, Smartbomb! I'm Bronxsta on TA forums.
        By the way, your world looks awesome in the pictures
        ---
        I said this on the Survivalcraft main forum, but I don't this can be called a clone anymore than Doom or Quake can be called clones of Wolfenstein. Minecraft popularized the open world block building genre. FPSs share similar mechanics and aesthetics but each have their own twist. Same with SC and others

      • http://twitter.com/JaredTA Jared Nelson

        I'll say it again, but it's not our job to make sure games sell well. That is the developer's job. I'm not sure what point you're trying to make.

      • Smartbomb

        I never questioned what your job was, you cannot deny however that your role here is an influential one. Given the emotional and contextual obscurity of a mere tagline, isn't it worth considering what message you may be broadcasting with just that headline? I haven't an issue with the truth of what is said, (though I disagree that Kaalus hasn't left his own unique footprint in the genre in some ways, i don't see how it can be considered a carbon copy) but how it is presented.

        An illiterate adolescent with blinded love for a brand can post a review that will most likely be seen for what it is and ignored, no damage done. But you guys have a very prominent voice and one I'd like to think is usually considered and deliberate. If it were just one individual posting disdain towards your post I could understand your confusion, yet given that there are a few people here with similar reactions towards this, is it not fair to assume it's not anomalous to interpret what has been said the way we have?

        I don't expect it is your role to ensure games sell well, with that logic does it mean it's also not your role to damage the fortunes of an app?

      • http://toucharcade.com Eli Hodapp

        No.

      • http://twitter.com/JaredTA Jared Nelson

        Yeah man, this is all bad. Basically what you're asking us to do is just parrot the opinions of those who choose to leave comments on our stories. We will never do that we will only post our own opinions. It doesn't matter if TouchArcade has 100 readers or a million we just can't compromise that integrity.

        That said, SC is the #3 top paid app right now and even if every single story on our front page was about Survivalcraft it wouldn't even be a blip on the radar to the kind of exposure they're getting right now.

      • Smartbomb

        I respect the emphasis on integrity, and that's a very good thing. I'm sure I've fallen foul of my own complaints as it seems I have failed to communicate my views clearly. I certainly don't want you to "parrot" the collective thoughts posted here, I was possibly harshly holding you to too high a standard of my own expectations. The point with my last post was more to suggest if there are several of us whom misinterpreted what you wrote, it's likely not just one person getting the wrong end of the stick.

        It's fair to say I'm also quite passionate about this app, it's the tits as far as I'm concerned, so my reaction is probably stronger than most. My main concern to begin with was that you'd put people off giving it a chance, since then though my fears have been alleviated and I'm now just arguing semantics. I'll stop now :)

      • http://twitter.com/JaredTA Jared Nelson

        I hear ya, I did misunderstand what you meant. But that's also the point: we didn't write anything about SC except the one sentence above. The entire discussion was on the podcast, and it wasn't as negative as people are making it out to be. At least not from my point of view. Unless people misheard what we said? I'll need to listen again.

        Anyway, I love SC, I haven't been able to stop playing it since we did a TA Plays of it about a week ago. So people commenting here that are mad are very confusing.

      • Smartbomb

        So it's confirmed! It seems this is a widespread addiction, and none of us can stop playing it...

        Kaalus hasn't made his presence known on here yet, perhaps you guys could interview him, get the skinny on future plans? And maybe rebuke him for ruining sleep routines :D

        It'd be great to have another developer get involved with the TA community, seems he has a lot of happy customers here already and I know I'm not the only one who has suggestions for updates and wants more of just about everything.

      • grits

        I love you guys for real. But in this case it seems like you hardly did any research and just trashed the game for no reason. Actually you were the only one to question whether that was right or not. Just saying, if you're going to talk about a game, at least do more than 10 minutes of research. I wonder why Brad did not bother to read the forums to find out why everyone loves it so much.

      • http://twitter.com/JaredTA Jared Nelson

        I love you too! Well that came out awkward...

        Anyway, I didn't really think we "trashed" it. Brad is not a fan but also even if the official Minecraft pocket was a 1:1 version of the PC game he still would not like it. Minecraft on a touchscreen is not for Brad, and I'm sure plenty of other people too. And that's totally cool. I hear a lot of people say the same types of things about first person shooters.

        What I don't understand is why you feel we didn't "research" this game enough. What do you mean? We have all played this game quite a bit, and even filmed around a 20 minute TA Plays, which hasn't been posted yet. I don't think we're confused on why people like SC so much and why it's selling so well: it's a better mobile Minecraft than the actual mobile Minecraft. We said this on the podcast. Reading forum impressions from people who think the same thing isn't going to make a difference, and again we're not here just to parrot the feelings of people in our community or elsewhere.

      • grits

        Okay that's cool, I feel you bro ;)
        When Brad kept saying he wishes it would differentiate itself, like if it focused on survival more it would be cool, I kept wanting to yell, 'but there's a survival update coming this month brohan! 'LOL
        I'm not gonna deny it looks like a straight clone and pretty much copies everything. However for me personally, I think it adds enough to warrant its existence and I'm excited about all the features that will be added in the future. I also find the touch controls very good. I played Minecraft a lot and even played on your server. I was actually shocked at how much I liked the touch controls.
        An interesting side note. I found myself pretty burnt out on Minecraft. Somehow this game is different enough for me to get really into it. I guess the subtle changes really do make a difference.

  • http://twitter.com/JaredTA Jared Nelson

    Did you guys actually listen to the podcast or just read the text above? We say basically all the same things you guys are about SurvivalCraft:

    1) SC is bankrupt in originality, but it's a far superior portable Minecraft than the actual portable Minecraft from Mojang.

    2) I have no idea why Mojang doesn't throw some of their gobs of money at MCPE to make it wayyyyy better, but for some reason they don't seem interested in doing that. They say they are trying but it's taking an incredibly long time and in the meantime other developers are eating their lunch.

    Weird that so many people took that as "hate" for Survivalcraft.

    • grits

      I think it was just mainly Brad's reaction. He was ripping the game
      a new one and questioning why it would exist. You guys had a few guesses but it was clear you didn't go in depth with the game. I'm not trying to be a dick, just offering up a reason why people are reacting the way they are.
      I think people have expectations that if you're going to talk about a game, you will know more than we do about it, or at least go in depth and make sure you know all the details. I mean everyone on the forms knew about the next huge update and you guys didn't even mention it.

    • precious sloane

      I just read the text above, mostly because I read everything in the news feed here. You should expect most of us to do the same, frankly, and not be surprised if people spend 30 seconds reading the article but don't listen to an hour long podcast afterwards.

      The headline is, "Step One: Clone Minecraft", and the line in the text above is only about how unoriginal Survival is and how it "doesn't add anything new to the formula it copies." Both of those sound pretty negative to me, at least at casual glance. I have no problem with you being critical in a review, by the way, but you have to admit it does seem, to the casual reader, like you think the game has nothing going for it beyond being a straight-up copy (which itself is rarely a positive thing.)

      I also don't own or plan to ever play Minecraft or Survivalcraft, by the way, so I don't have any sort of opinion on the game itself.

      • http://twitter.com/JaredTA Jared Nelson

        Point taken and I do see what you mean. Appreciate the feedback.

  • Kozio235

    You guys are so stupid XD

    Survivalcraft is very very very... Different from minecraft! The only things that are the same are a few recipes, crafting, and blocks. Even the trees are different!!

    Oh and before you simply tell the world your hateful opinions, go research. The one guy developing survivalcraft built it from the ground up by himself. Never, in any way, did he "clone" any codes or programs from mc into sc.

    • http://twitter.com/JaredTA Jared Nelson

      Umm, that's not what clone means in the world of video games. By your definition, Zynga didn't clone Tiny Tower even though they copied very specific elements. Same thing with Ninja Fishing. The code is all original, it's the design that was copied and is usually the gray area of whether or not something is an "acceptable" clone. Had we said similar things about Dream Heights or Ninja Fishing nobody would bat an eyelash. But because it's a game people like, all of a sudden it's a non-issue. Funny.

      "The trees are different!!" LOL

      • Smartbomb

        The trees are different! They smell better...

        Hopefully you don't see Kaalus in the same light as Zynga. That's considered a dirty word on my iPad, and my apps are a clean bunch.

        We may be getting a few new Toucharcaders, the official SC forums have now been made aware of us, and our worlds may well collide. Win win.

      • http://twitter.com/JaredTA Jared Nelson

        No way, it's obvious SC is a labor of love from someone who just wanted a really good mobile Minecraft. Dream Tower was just trying to cash in on something popular, IMO.

        Actually, maybe that's where the point of this conflict lies. We're not saying SC is just some quick and dirty cash in on the Minecraft name (there are hundreds if not thousands of those in the App Store already). It's definitely a good game and not a scam or anything like that, but it does borrow liberally from a lot of specific elements of Minecraft.

        How you (the general you, not you personally) feel about that is most likely down to personal preference, but my point above was that if you're going to call games like Dream Tower a clone then Survivalcraft fits that bill as well.

      • grits

        I'm with you on this. But like I said, he is actually improving upon the game and adding a ton more stuff. Also it's a little different when you copy the formula for a billion-dollar game versus a game that hasn't even come out yet by a small developer. Am I right? I think if you steel someone's shit before they even release it that is extremely evil.
        I would say if you're going to clone a game you best make it better than the original. Also you better wait at least six months before you do so LOL

      • grits

        If you talk about this in the podcast, please mention the above post. If you don't I'm going to find myself yelling into an empty room again. LOL can't wait to hear the next one ;)
        Also mention the next update which is detailed on his blog.
        Also mention how the trees smell better.

  • grits

    To be fair, step one absolutely is to clone mine craft. Step two is to improve upon the game and give the fans what the original creators are too lazy to give them. Step three is to make the game your own by adding fresh elements and giving it your own twist.

  • Robot:String

    I'm VERY dissapointed! No "banana mouth" mention and just a few comments about body hair and male hygiene? What's this? :(

    BTW: do you think there's a game equivalent to "banana mouth"?
    I mean, a game that's nice to play, but after you finish it, it leaves a weird aftertaste...
    Maybe Star Command leaves "banana mouth"? (Judging by the comments in the forums).

    Well, now you know: less game yadda yadda and more male hygiene tips, please!
    Thank you.