MINECRAFT is a sandbox construction game developed for the pc by Mojang studios. The game itself has a distinct look to it as everything in the world is built out of cubic blocks that the player utilizes however they want to. Players can build fantastical structures or create complex machinery to perform amazing tasks. I myself am a mere amateur compared to other more experienced players of the game but that’s not important. What is important is that the game offers the player almost limitless potential as to what he or she can do. But perhaps you are asking yourself what is the appeal of this game? What has caused nearly 36 million game registrations and almost 6,800,000 purchases of the PC version of Minecraft? In this article I will attempt to explain the appeal of a game whereby the only limit to this game is your creativity. Let’s begin the gameplay.
When you begin the game the player is given nothing, no tools, no lights, nothing. You have to find resources to build a shelter, feed yourself, and protect yourself from the monsters that come out at night. After harvesting some wood from trees it is ideal to build a crafting table so that the range of items you can build increases. You will need the crafting table to build pickaxes, spades, axes, and hoes. After that you need to use your pickaxe to collect cobblestone to build a furnace where you can smelt various ores to construct better and more durable tools. Once you have completed your shelter you wait inside until its daylight as monsters come out at night. Zombies, Skeletons, giant Spiders and Creepers appear and attack you until you die; and once you die you lose your entire acquired inventory. After its daylight you collect sheep wool and more materials needed to decorate your home. You need sheep’s wool in order to build a bed with wood so that you can go to sleep at night (this is a mechanic that allows you to skip through night time to sunrise and thus avoid the monsters). Once you’ve done this your character might be hungry or need to restore his health so you go about hunting for animals or building a garden. Wheat seeds are not that hard to find as all you need to do is find and break tall grass. Once that’s done you find arable land that you can till and plant your seeds (note: Wheat will not grow in sand so you need dirt; also, you need to grow it near a water source in order for it to work. If you do not have a water source you can build a bucket with three iron ingots and transport water that way). Once you have grown the crops a golden yellow colour you can harvest them in order to craft bread (which does not require the use of a furnace for some reason). Once all of the necessities are taken care of the rest is up to the player and what he or she does in the game.
That is part of the main appeal of this game. The game is so simple and yet so complex at the same time that you will find it hard to figure out what to do next. You could decide to go monster hunting and collect things like feathers and spider string that you need to make a bow and arrow. You could dig down deep into the world and find massive underground caverns filled with things like lava, obsidian, diamonds, coal, gold, iron, redstone etc. The potential is nearly endless. And if that basic description may have seemed incredibly long but that was just detailing the basic necessities for the game. A cursory look at MINECRAFT videos online shows that there are many more skilled players who have mastered the game to the point of being able to do anything. However, if the basic description that I provided seems daunting to you than you might want to consider looking at some community resources available online. A MINECRAFT wiki exists online where tons of detailed information exists about crafting recipes, block information, and things to do in the game. If you want to be inspired you can search YouTube videos online for tutorials and challenges showing you how to harvest things like gunpowder from Creepers (you need it in order to make dynamite). I cannot tell you how immersive and addicting this game is with just mere words so I urge you to check things out for yourself. Below is a list of websites that will help you if you decide to buy the game.
MINECRAFT is copyright Mojang. No copyright infringement is intended with this article (seriously though, MINECRAFT is awesome).
Clifford T. Hofferd is a University graduate living in Prince George searching for a career while working in a sushi restaurant.