More than simply another mobile puzzle game or endless runner, Createrria is actually an original and innovative app that allows budding designers to produce their own platform and action games. It requires no technical skills, merely imagination and patience, and although you’ll never create a masterpiece full of depth, complexity and wonder, there is a lot to be learned here about the fundamentals of game design. For that alone, Createrria is worthy of investigation.
Upon firing up the app, you will be greeted by an insanely catchy theme tune and the option to either create or play. The play button allows you to sample other people’s inventions but the create button is where the fun really starts. Hitting it presents you with four visual styles to choose from (Candy, Smooth, Fable and Pixel), although sadly only one of these is selectable from the start, with the others requiring in-app purchases to access. From here, you can choose to start creating a game from scratch or select one of several pre-defined layouts, but again these require some financial investment to use. A brief tutorial follows, introducing you to the main design elements available, which include collectibles, platforms, decorations, enemies, destructibles and other assorted platforming staples. Add in some basic physics and you are good to go, free to explore, experiment and generally play around to your heart’s content.
You’ll soon realise that creating even simple platformers is a lot more complex than it first appears and it requires a lot of thought coming up with something even resembling a playable game. However, the process is rendered easier by the intuitive drag-and-drop interface and broad range of options, and with a bit of planning and forethought, even the greenest designer will have something to show for their efforts in no time at all. It really is immensely satisfying seeing your efforts come to fruition and even within the app’s limited scope there is a lot of potential to create something a little unusual.
Visually, Createrria takes its cue from a variety of sources, including Minecraft, anime and chunky 8-bit pixel art, with vibrant, attractive graphics that nicely evoke the halcyon days of platforming. Sound-wise, there are some memorable tunes and neat effects with which to enhance your games, while the creative interface is easy to get the hang of and yet offers a surprising amount of depth and flexibility. However, the physics, collision detection and in-game controls fare slightly worse, with a lack of precision that is occasionally annoying but never to the point of frustration.
Createrria really is something of an unexpected pleasure. Working within the fairly narrow confines of a platform creator, it is undeniably successful, with enough options to keep new designers happy while also providing further possibilities for those prepared to exercise their minds (and their wallets) a little more. Plenty is included in the free version, but in-app purchases open up more opportunities for customisation, adding much to the game’s longevity. A quick perusal of other people’s creations shows what can be done with the app and it is likely that after playing with this for a while to learn the basics, younger gamers may well be inspired to turn to more sophisticated tools to take the next step. Before they get there however, there is a lot of fun, and much to learn, here in Createrria.
Createrria (Reviewed on iOS)
This game is great, with minimal or no negatives.
Although limited in scope, Createrria provides ample opportunities to learn the basics of effective game design, and does so in an attractive package that is sure to appeal particularly to younger audiences. As a first venture into mobile games creation, this is tough to beat and provides a fascinating alternative to the usual casual apps on offer.