From the outside I have to admit Terraria looks like little more than a 2D Minecraft. And whilst it has more than it's fair share of similarities with the game it is very much it's own beast.
Terraria drops you into a randomly generated world with a sword, pick axe and a wood cutting axe. You have to build a shelter and survive. The twist is you actually end up building a town, a guide helps you get started and you can attract medics and merchants and all sorts by building them houses and meeting the relevant requirements. These people can then aid you on your quest to defeat the various beasts that inhabit the world. And that's the other twist, this game is far more combat heavy than Minecraft
Monsters vary from Dragon Quest style slimes to huge underground worms, from zombies to demon eyes. All standard fantasy fare yes but still the combat is fun. You use the right of the screen to attack and the left side moves you and, thankfully, the controls are fluid and responsive and navigating and fighting is fun. Exploring the randomly generated mines and caves is just as exhilarating as in Minecraft and the worlds really are enthralling.
Graphically the game is very simple with a pixelated style that gives it the feel of an old school 2D game. The music and sound effects are simple but effective. The world is charming but deadly.
If, like me, you find the Pocket Edition of Minecraft too fiddly diddly (hiddly hoodly ho) then Terraria might be the phone game for you. With tight controls, a charming world, great combat and a town building experience it's got hours of fun in it. Oh and the whole thing can be played with friends online. Not too shabby.