It had been a long time since I'd played Minecraft for anything more than a quick visit when my sister announced she was hiring a server for her friends to play on.
She kindly invited me along, and in no time at all I was sucked back into the block-breaking, resource-gathering, crazy-project-building world!
For those of you that have never played Minecraft before, the game takes place in a procedurally-generated world made up entirely of blocks of different materials. You start the game with absolutely nothing and have to gather the right resources to build tools and shelter before night falls - this is when the monsters come out to terrorise you!
Once you have a secure base to survive the darkness, you can use your days to gather the resources you need to make better equipment and building materials. This often involves digging down into the world to mine ore and stone. You can also farm to the food you need and gather animals to breed for wool or leather. Lots to do! If you want to be really clever, you can build powered circuits to create things like automated crop harvesters, railway tracks, hidden doors and moving stairways.
Since I'm not clever, I've built myself a fairly circuit-free little house inside a mountain where I can hide from the monsters at night and safely gather materials together for future projects. Here's the main room with a little mezzanine sleeping area and a more-than-slightly hazardous giant fireplace:
|Home sweet home in Minecraft|
Since I last played, a lot of new items have been added to the game so I have a bit of a learning curve to cover. There are now lots more cute things to use for decorating like flower pots, carpets and item frames. Building a house is my favourite part of the game, so I've spent quite a lot of time pottering about making changes!
The house is fairly well equipped for crafting now, with a dedicated area at the back of the house for storing and processing the resources I find.
|Making stuff! Or repairing stuff I've broken...|
I've also added a little kitchen complete with working fridge that dispenses food (almost entirely made up of ideeas pinched from the interwebs):
|More cooking in here than I'm capable of in real life!|
I thought a waterside would be a good idea to build, complete with boat dispenser (the grey box). Sadly it doesn't work very well and it has a tendency to get stuck (or worse, occasionally propel you into a chasm beyond the splash-pool). Health and safety nightmare - although note the lack of safety warning signs at the top for un-suspecting visitors:
|Perfectly safe... Honest...|
So that's Minecraft so far. A bit of a time-sink, I know, but it find it quite calming to dig and build after a stressful day at work!