Godus player diary: First Impressions

Last year I pledged for the Godus kickstarter, being a fan of most Peter Molyneux games (Dungeon Keeper and Black & White being two of my favorite games ever) that was almost a no brainer for me, and last night they released the steam early access keys for it, turning, what I was expecting a good night sleep, into a 6 hour marathon.

These are my first impressions of it, I know it's in beta so I'll try to focus on ideas and overall mechanics of the game.

The Good

  • Graphics: Nothing to add to this, the art style really fits the game.
  • Forest Fires: tried a meteor far from my villages, the fire spread to 3 of them .... awesome.
  • Cards: Godus has a card collection mechanic, you have your improvement cards that need resource cards to be active. It's a neat idea but....

The Bad

  • Card Gathering
    • Improvement Cards are won with population milestones, these are generally pretty straightforward, you find a piece of land, destroy every piece of nature in it, flatten it and send your guys to build their little houses. However the terrain manipulation tool can be extremely clunky at times and until you unlock the "sculpt multiple layers at once" improvement, it feels like a huge chore, unfortunately after you unlock said improvement, the cost of sculpting terrain goes sky high and you'll spend more time gathering faith than you should.
    • Resource cards suffer a worse fate, they are scattered around the world in chests most are buried, they can be 2 layers down or 8 layers down and if you have them 8 layers down then expect to burn more time than it should trying to get to it. To make matters worse, you never know what you're going to get, so expect to find a surplus of 4 units of plaster before the card of oak gets to you. This could be avoided pretty easily if your peasants could do mine/cut trees, which brings:
  • There's nothing to do but expand, no real economy or balances to manage, you level land and that's it.
  • Borrowing from this point, the game looks like a ghost town if you're not constructing something or in a battle.
  • Building Times, this one is totally unacceptable, 3 hours to build a shrine? A wonder in age of empires 2 takes less time if you're using a single peasant..
  • Too much clicking

Right now I'm stuck because there are no more treasures that I can find and no more shrines to build.
I'll keep following development and I expect to keep playing it until release though.