Friday, November 19, 2010

Minecraft Day 2

So I had seen Minecraft in various places online but honestly it's a bunch of blocks and it's just making stuff so really how much fun could that be? Well I have to say it's a hell of a lot of fun. What really tipped me off to it was the video link below.

This guy named "X" did a great series of videos on the game and they were amazingly engaging, to the point that I realized that I had to play this game, and holy crap was it worth it.

Essentially if I had to break it down it's a game about survival and making a place for yourself in a virtual world while trying to stay alive. Think of all of the blocks like legos that you have to build stuff out of, and then add in monsters that are trying to kill you while you do said activity. The result is a thrilling RPG type of game that is extremely rewarding (to me anyway).

When it starts you pop up in a randomly generated world of infinite size. Now think about that for a second, this isn't like Oblivion where the world was hand crafted to be a specific way, nope this is pure computerized nature at it's best. Sure it's a simple world, but it's so inviting at the same time (until the creepers start showing up of course). Anyway you spawn and you have nothing but your bare hands to make it in this world. The first thing that I did was go beat down a tree with my hands to get wood, for that wood I made sticks, which I then turned into a wooden pick axe so that I could go mine for coal. Why coal, for torches, why torches, because I was in a race against the sun at this point. Once the sun goes down the monsters spawn and they are out for blood. The torches work to keep them away because monsters won't spawn in light, but that won't keep them away from killing you once they have spawned.

So after I got some torches I dug myself a little hole in the side of a hill so that I could hold up for the first night. That was pretty safe, nothing could get me until the morning so I just kind of hung out. When morning came I was unaware that some of the monsters didn't die off by the daylight, namely Creepers, which I have a nasty little way of blowing up when they get too close to you, leaving giant craters, which in this case I became one of.

Ok respawned and ran back to pick up all of the goodies that I had already picked up and decided that my little hill home wasn't going to cut it. I had heard that if you build up on top of a mountain then the mobs have less of a chance to come get you, but I didn't want to live like some hermit up on top of a mountain because that would have been a pain in the butt to get to anything else (except for the forest that is located on top of a mountain to the East of my eventual home). So I decided that I'd use a slightly larger hill to make my house. And thus I began digging in and down, just in time to beat the night. Thankfully the little hill house was large enough that I could move around a little bit and set up my work bench, stove, and chest. And thus I went to work on more useful tools made from stone, including my first stone sword.

When the day dawned, like the noob I am, I walked out to quickly get mauled by another batch of monsters that had decided to set up shop right outside my door. Ok as supernanny would say, this crap was unacceptable, thus it was time to set up some exterior defenses. Now there aren't actually any weapon type of defenses (at least not that I know of yet), the first thing that I did was cut out a little walkway from the front of my house that wraps around to the North side of my house. This at least will keep the baddies from waiting right outside my door when the morning comes, but note to self, make the house face the East in the future, and not blocked by a large mountain preventing me from getting the full sunrise (no wonder my days seem so short).

Anyway the idea then occurred to me that maybe monsters were spawning on top of my house because the roof was made of grass, thus I decided that I needed a roof. Originally I was going to go farm up some wood then reconsidered and used stone because I had started a little quarry within my house (more on that later) and I was rolling in stone, hence the stone ceiling was started. Of course knowing me a stone ceiling wasn't going to be enough, let's make this into a stone tower so that I can see if there is anything outside of my door in the morning, or better yet let's make a second entrance so that I'll really be safe. So after some time I finally got the tower completed with windows pretty much around the entire perimeter (yes glass windows, because I live by a lot of sand).

With my house pretty secure I felt a lot safer waiting out the night listening to the monsters surround my house in the darkness, and when I finally looked out from my tower I saw them, it looked like a starter zone in WoW, there were dozens upon dozens of those bastards out there. Out of dumb luck I seemed to have built my house/tower/castle in the middle of a monster city (not a real city). This could only mean one thing, the house was going to need more defense, maybe a moat and a bridge.

So this is where day 2 really starts, I decided that if I built a bridge and cut out the land around my house then the mobs wouldn't be able to get to me. So with a couple of shovels I set to work cutting out my "moat" (no water... yet...) Once completed I needed away to block them off, I was thinking that maybe I could just remove a block when I wanted to go back and forth but that seemed pretty tedious so I made a gate with a door so that only I could get in. That's when aesthetics came into play, I adorned it with some torches and short stone wall to make it look awesome, even dropped a little sign outside saying when I built the Ick house.

The following game day I felt a lot safer, nothing was going to get to me if I didn't want them too, but I made a couple more additions, like a glass wall along the front of the original entrance and an outer perimeter wall just to keep them a little further away so that I wouldn't need to listen to them at night. But I had something that I really needed to do, I needed arrows. Sure my house was safe, but there was still the threat of creepers nearby in the morning, thus I set off to find some rubble which might drop flint (arrowheads). For the most part rubble is found in the side of mountains or caves, and I just happened to find a huge pile of it by a very large cave, I should say hole in the Earth because it's a huge hole. Aside from rubble I found iron, which is used to make steel and better tools, but I also found a chicken that had fallen in the hole, that was kind of funny, but he had other friends too. Within the hole and very near all of the rubble I was digging through I heard a crapload of spiders and there it was my first dungeon spawner. Underground little monster spawners can appear and this one was a spider factory. Without the proper weapons and armor to take on the spiders not to mention lack of arrows that I had come looking for, I decided to leave it alone for now, I did end up putting a sign by the entrance calling it the Spider cave because signs are cool.

Back home I went and decided that I was going to see if I could find anything of use below my little place in the world and before too long I bust into a natural cave beneath me, my thoughts, oh boy time to explore a little bit. With torches in hand I started my decent, which ended up being short lived. Remember I mentioned that creepers explode, well out of the darkness one of guys came charging after me, I turned tail and raced out of there as fast as I could, thankfully he wasn't a great climber so he wasn't able to follow me up. Afterwards I erected a door to keep anything else from climbing up and giving me a big shock one day in my house while I might be crafting.

And that pretty much sums up the adventure for the first two days.

I really don't know what the future of Minecraft is, but there is something that is just so cool about setting up these little houses and just exploring. I was thinking that I might make a second house and do it right, after that who knows where my exploration will take me. What could be really thrilling is that your spawn spot doesn't change, so the further away you get from home, the greater the risk, because when you die, you drop everything you have on you. So how cool would it be to just explore the world and set up little supply stations and forts around the world as you press on. If you die, go off in another direction and see where that takes you. Eventually you'll have made an entire little kingdom around where you spawned with random loot all over the place. Sounds kind of like the makings of one kick ass RPG if you ask me, and imagine if someone else then played that save file not knowing where you had been and they went off exploring seeing the traces of your work from previous play, to me that has the makings of a real adventure. Let me explain...

In a game like Oblivion the world is huge and there are towns and castles and random loot all over the place, but you know what sucks about it? It's all artificial, all of it is there because some artist or some programmer decided that they would put X at spot Y. In Minecraft, if I build a house I built it because I needed that house to survive. If you find a diamond sword, you found where an epic adventure of mine ended. When you find a chest full of goodies, you're finding stuff that I left there from a previous adventure that I didn't want to carry with me. So really anything that you find is the direct result of my previous adventures. Torches are in places where I explored, meaning I may have left loot (probably not, but you never know). And really how alive is that world now when you think about it? If someone picked up my save they'd be playing in a game where my guy virtually lived, built, and died, how alive is that? To me that is the pinnacle of gaming a world with an honest to goodness history to it. AWESOME!!!

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