Playing Junk Jack for the first time will instantly bring to mind fond memories of playing Minecraft and its lesser known cousin, Terraria. You’re presented with a blank world full of pixely possibilities, just waiting for you to fill it. Plunging the depths of your creativity has rarely been more fun, and more exhausting, than it is in Junk Jack, a game that came out last year but recently received a major update.
If you know Minecraft, then to a certain extent you already know Junk Jack. You start with nothing other than a hard-hat and a lot of gumption, and you must travel throughout the world, destroying blocks made up of different materials and resources. These let you ‘craft’ items, by combining different substances to make other other substances. Then you’ll be able to build houses, plant gardens, cook food, smelt metals, wield tools, weave fabrics, and fend off the minions of evil when the sun goes down. And that’s just a small part of what’s available. Junk Jack offers a huge sandbox world for you to play in, and the possibilities are virtually endless.
It’s a mining life for me.
The biggest difference between this and Minecraft is that Junk Jack is a 2D side-scrolling game, so it isn’t as free-roaming as you might be used to. This is somewhat limiting, but you’ll soon get over that as the game wins you over with it’s charming visuals, trippy music, and seriously addictive gameplay. It’s daunting to start (there is no in-game help, save for a slight tutorial and a link to the game’s Wiki-page) but once you get the hang of it you’ll never want to stop.
Helping you get over the fact that the game is dimensionally challenged is the massive amount of stuff you can create, especially for your home. You can decorate it with paintings, chairs, sofas, shelves, etc. Basically, if you can think of it then odds are you can find some way to create it. They’ve also done a lot to encourage exploring, by creating a vast subterranean world that holds all kinds of different ‘biomes’ and treasures (statues, exotic minerals, and other random artifacts) for you to discover. You can take these things and decorate your home or use the materials to cook up something really unique.
Super Mario Craft.
The game also has an interesting save-game function. You can have 3 different save slots, and since your resources carry over from one slot to the other, you can use one world as your homebase and the others as places to explore as much as you want or to totally stripmine the other.
If we had any big complaint with the game, it’s the controls. You swipe your finger in the direction you want Jack to go and tap-tap-tap to break up blocks, attack enemies, and place things where you want them to go. The problem is, tapping isn’t that precise and sometimes Jack will go where you didn’t intend him to go, placing things in the wrong spots, or failing miserably during combat. The combat is especially problematic, as all you can really do is swing your weapon wildly and hope you hit the monster.
It would be impractical to list everything that this game has to offer. But what we can tell you is that Junk Jack is a lot of fun and crazily addictive once you get into it. If you can get past the fact that you’re sent out into the world without having a clue what to do, and if world-building, sandbox games are your thing, than Junk Jack is for you. Heck, if you’re just looking for a way to express yourself creatively and in a fun and unique medium, than Junk Jack is for you. Either way, Junk Jack is an amazing accomplishment and an easy way to kill a few hours, or days. You will seriously have a hard time getting bored.