At first, Terraria may seem like a 2d version of an old version of Minecraft, but the more you play it, the more you realize Terraria is a game of its own. It focuses more on combat than survival and offers more exploration, and the controls and interface are a little more intuitive than the controls found in Minecraft.
Those still comparing this game to Minecraft should know that the server provided with Terraria is much simpler and is easier to set up. It is not easy by any means to create a Terraria world, however!
Terraria is definitely a difficult game to get into, because you start the game with next to nothing. You are placed in a randomly generated world and given some very basic equipment... and that's it.
The game offers no direction to new players, and unless you are willing to cheat to get what you want out of the game, you will spend hours just digging out tunnels to absorb ground tiles (to build with) and find loot. This is, however, a very addictive process for some people, and I will admit I spent my fair share of hours digging aimlessly.
The game runs perfectly on my extremely outdated office laptop, so it should be a brilliant sandbox game for low end gamers.
Overall, Terraria is a great game for its price ($10), and it offers a lot of online world-building and role-playing capabilities. As updates slowly arrive for the game, we are treated to new tools and weapons and decorations, and with each new feature or gameplay change, we have more excuses to realize we have been digging for the past eight hours.
Another thing to look for when browsing PC games is the system requirements. There are really 4 things you need to worry about: RAM or memory, processor, video card, and finally, the hard drive space. Memory can be upgraded fairly easily, and it shouldn't cost much. We recommend having at least 1GB memory, 2GB if possible. Your processor needs to be fairly modern, and a Pentium 4 probably won't cut it. We recommend a 1.8Ghz Core 2 Duo or better. Your video card should support DirectX 9 (or higher) and have a minimum of 256mb memory attached to it. We recommend 512mb or greater. Hard drive space is subjective, but we recommend having a fairly large amount of space. You could settle for as little as 40gb and be able to play most games, but we recommend having 80gb or more space to make sure you have room for multiple games at once. Most PC games don't run straight from their disc. They usually require an install process, and most modern games require around 8gb of free space to install.
PCs are the ultimate game console, because they can be upgraded, and they will never go out of style. PCs can also play most old game systems through emulators, so if you lose your Playstation, you can just play your games on your PC. You can also play classic arcade titles and have infinite coins!
A lot of people complain about having to use a mouse and keyboard to play PC games. This isn't a requirement, fortunately, and we have what we call gamepads or joypads. Yes, we can use game controllers! We can even use Xbox controllers! That said, it's not as plug-and-play as a game console, and some games simply will not work with your joypad. Fortunately, Steam tells you if games support controllers, and if your favorite game doesn't support them, you can map the controllers to keyboard and mouse controls.
Just be careful when buying PC games. Read reviews carefully. If a game gets a 1/5, don't buy it. If your PC is a cheapie, don't expect modern 3d games to work. Read the system requirements very carefully. If you don't know anything about your system, you can find help in the PC Stuff forum.