Voxelized, Early Access Review

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Voxelized is a block-building game currently in Early Access as an alpha version. Unlike Grimoire Manastorm, which I reviewed a few weeks back, Voxelized is a very, very rough alpha. According to the game's Steam page, the dev added the game to Early Access because he wants "to involve the community in the very early stages of the game."

Very early stages indeed. The page states that the game is "fully playable," which I might debate. Currently all you can do is walk, jump, destroy blocks, and build blocks. Regardless, I'm not here to talk about the quality of a game, I'm here to discuss usability. Here's what I think Voxelized does well, and where it can improve.


Voxelized Follows Convention

First loading into a game, I didn't have to pull up any figures with the control scheme. The movement is tried-and-true WASD for direction and Space for jump. Left click picks up a block, and right click sets a block back down. Simple. Like Minecraft and Block N Load, Voxelized also highlights the blocks that can be manipulated when the cursor moves, making it easy to tell where blocks can and cannot be placed.

Following movement convention eases players into the game by reintroducing controls which with they're familiar. Using familiar concepts reduces cognitive load imposed on a player's working memory, allowing them to focus more of their attention on learning and playing the game.


...But Is Inconsistent

After learning the basics, I found little to do in the alpha build besides relocate blocks. I was surprised by this, not only because I expected there would be more in a "fully playable" game, but because I expected there to be some kind of combat-element. 

Why? Because the Voxelized Configuration screen -- the player's first exposure to the game -- lists 'Fire1,' 'Fire2,' and 'Fire3' as controls.

Voxelized Configuration: Input

Of course, I learned that the 'Fire' inputs do not relate to combat at all. Fire1 allows a player to delete a block, Fire2 to build it, and Fire3 is currently not functional.


  • Keep naming clear and consistent with the game's Pause Screen by re-labeling Fire2 to "Build." 
  • Consider relabeling Fire1 to something other than 'Delete.' I may be wrong, but I expect that M1 will eventually add a block to the player's inventory, not delete it from the game.
  • Make sure that all of the currently mapped keys are on the Configuration. The Map 'M' is bound in-game, but not listed on either the Pause Screen as one of the controls or in the Configuration.


I reviewed this game not because it was on trial, but because it's so cheap in alpha and my crappy computer can't handle the open beta of Heroes of the Storm. Since the game is essentially in its infancy, I may review the game again and discuss its progress. 

Final comments for the dev:
  • I noticed a range of numbers (0-25) on the left side of the screen in-game. They're not distracting for more than a second after noticing them, but I'm still confused why they're there. Does it have something to do with saves? With location? It requires some explanation and possibly relocation.
  • The Pause Screen displays a slider for a 'yes' and 'no' question. A toggle would be better if the skill is binary -- either you can climb or you can't -- or the options ought to be re-labeled with less binary terminology.
  • Try and get someone to proofread your community updates before posting -- there are a number of grammatical errors on the page.


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