More Reviews
REVIEWS Plants vs. Zombies: Garden Warfa Review
[PlayStation release update] Electronic Arts and the development team at EA Canada hope to catch as many PlayStation gamers as they did when Garden Warfare first launched exclusively on Xbox One.

CounterSpy Review
Your operative is tasked with infiltrating both sides of nuclear war. Can CounterSpy finish the mission in time for your PSN credit?
Release Dates
NEW RELEASES Tales of Xillia 2
Release date: Out Now

Plants Vs. Zombies: Garden Warfare
Release date: Out Now

Madden NFL 15
Release date: 08/26/14

Destiny
Release date: 09/09/14


LATEST FEATURES The Updating List of PAX Indies
We're heading to PAX Prime! Are you looking to check out a few unique indie games while you're there? UPDATED: Nom Nom Galaxy

The Best Upcoming Racing Games of 2014
You've probably only heard of Sony's exclusive Driveclub and Microsoft's exclusive Forza Horizon 2, but don't forget about a few others.

LEADERBOARD
Read More Member Blogs
FEATURED VOXPOP KevinS
RIP Robin Williams (1951-2014)
By KevinS
Posted on 08/14/14
Robin Williams (1951-2014) Robin Williams was an absolutely exceptional comedian, talented actor, and holder of a special place in video game history: He was the first really famous gamer I know of. I’m sure there were others, but they kept a comparatively low profile, unlike one...

From Dust Review

danielrbischoff By:
danielrbischoff
07/26/11
PRINTER FRIENDLY VERSION
EMAIL TO A FRIEND
GENRE Strategy 
PLAYERS
PUBLISHER Ubisoft 
DEVELOPER Ubisoft Montpellier 
RELEASE DATE Out Now
E10+ Contains Mild Violence

What do these ratings mean?

The one, true sandbox game.


When I was a kid, I hated the sandbox. I hated the beach. The little grains of dirt and rock would get stuck everywhere. To this day I avoid the sand like the plague. It gets in my shoes, in my hair, in my eyes. It sticks to my skin and palms. Even the fun of burying someone up to their chin does not diminish the ever-present nuisance. But despite my lifelong hatred for sand, I'm quite fond of From Dust.

Grand Theft Auto and Just Cause have been described as sandbox games, but only in the sense that they let you go anywhere and do pretty much anything. In reality, they're open-world games with third-person-shooter and driving mechanics overlaid on top. Calling them sandbox games just sounded more innovative, more conducive to GDC talks. But From Dust is quite literally the sandbox game that allows you to hold the elements in the palm of your hand, reforming the landscape at your will.

In Ubisoft Montpellier's game, you'll find yourself using the left trigger to pick up sand, water, lava, and vegetation. You use "The Breath" (of God, perhaps) to move these items and navigate the diminutive maps. The right trigger releases whatever The Breath is holding, with the rate of release proportionally determining the rate at which sand or water is released.

Across the campaign, you'll be presented with challenges that generally consist of assisting your villagers in their dominion over the land. Some maps have rivers blocking paths to key items, while others are bone-dry: problems you'll have to solve. At first, deserts of sand won't prove a problem for navigation, but each map requires a certain amount of vegetation to be spread before a gate will open access to the next level.

While it can be difficult to understand how to direct your villagers, it stands to reason that From Dust is hardly a real-time strategy game. More often than not, you'll set them off on a course that will get interrupted by some scripted natural disaster or another. Most of your time will be spent forming and clearing a path than managing who goes where.

Of course, From Dust is a lot deeper than your average sandbox with tsunamis, exploding plants, and erupting volcanoes throwing a wrench in most of your plans. Your villagers can balance this out by praying at specific landmarks around the map or controlling specific idols. These will offer protection from tsunamis and the ability to replant fire trees, water bushes, and exploding plants.

Volcanoes, water, and sand all have their own purpose in reshaping the world around your villagers, opening new paths, and protecting them with walls of cooled lava. Everything in the game can be manipulated so that your villagers can populate the entire level with vegetation and varied landscape.

From Dust might not inspire you to play through the campaign multiple times, and it probably won't blow you away like the games in this year's blockbuster holiday season. Regardless, From Dust's gameplay provides a compelling, serene, emotional connection with the game's world. Controlling fate like a god to move mountains and adjust the coarse of rivers is powerful. From Dust is the kind of game you could spend hours with, creating a world you can be happy with, that fosters growth in your little band of tribesmen, and is as visually stunning as it is functional.

From Dust is the God game for the rest of us, shallow enough for arm-chair deities, deep enough for messiahs who want to come to Earth and shape the world elbows deep. As one of the few games you can actually relax with and still enjoy to its fullest, From Dust should be in your library.
A- Revolution report card
  • Shifting Sand, Water, and Lava
  • New, engaging challenges in each level
  • Making the player progressively more Godlike
  • Beautiful, terraforming engine
  • Commanding villagers can get awkward
  • I actually like sand!
    Reviews by other members
    No member reviews for the game.


More from the Game Revolution Network




comments powered by Disqus

 


More information about From Dust


More On GameRevolution