Victus Spiritus


Holy Crap Minecraft!

11 Sep 2010

The above image is a beautiful castle constructed by 10-15 people over a few days within a single world node. I don't have much time to capture the wonder and awesomeness that was my first hour of digging down to lava, or jump box laying up to the world ceiling, but building in Minecraft is truly a pleasure. It's a simple but elegantly designed cube based game that places an avatar in a randomly generated world. The official blog for Minecraft is Markus Persson's own Tumblog, The Word of Notch.

update July 22nd, 2011 F-18 buzzes airport with Zeplin Mod
(thanks to Matt Mastracci for this link)

update April 25th, 2011 Minecraft 1.5 imminent

The Minecraft Diaries, update April 24th, 2011
My friend Noah loves Minecraft (so much so that he yearns to fix their bugs) and has crafted wondrous tales of brave virtual adventurer Sean!
Sean aspires to build better bacon making machines and swim in oceans of pigs.

update April 23rd, 2011
Deathwing, Giant Terminator and the Colliseum

update April 7th, 2011
This Kinect hack was pretty awesome. Imagine converting 3D imagery or even regular pictures into Minecraft virtual worlds.

update March 28, 2011
Minecraft meets Lord of the Rings
Minas Tirith

Saruman's Tower

update Jan 17, 2011
My friend Tyler discovered this music video created with Minecraft:

update Jan 2011, Free swag for Sci-fi/Fantasy RPG fans
The Children of the Ark tabletop role-playing game open beta is out and available for download. We invite any and all gamers to check out the system, it's a labor of love slowly baked over a decade of play testing and rewriting. My coauthor Aakin Patel is integrating changes now so we'll periodically update the core rules which are available at this time for free. If we see sufficient interest we'll begin releasing supplements with background materials and setting in small packages (app sized booklets).

update Nov 5
I've taken the content here and moved it to it's own Squidoo lens, Minecraft Castle, where new discoveries will be appended to this info. There's plenty of interest in blue prints and tools that aid crafting virtual worlds in Minecraft. I'll keep my eyes peeled and update that source.

update Nov 1
Mark Trapp is working on the Giza Necropolis in Minecraft.

update Oct 28th 2010 fresh from Notch's twitter stream, biome test.

Also came across an interview of Markus Persson from IndieGames
The Indiegames Interview

update the Columbia from Bioshock Infinite

update just came across this soothing video on notch's Tumblog

another creative build

update: I came across what is minecraft page
They share a number of great YouTube videos as well as a nice high level description of "What is Minecraft?".

Here's the update to the Enterprise Project

another update
Looking for dynamic content each day with the latest Minecraft news?'s got it covered with the Minecraft Daily.

A little about the game of Minecraft

There's a safe building mode with a variety of block types, and a more challenging game where creatures attempt to hunt down your avatar with limited health. The game is playable from within a browser and it's also available for download. I found the browser based version to be super smooth. The developer of the game Markus Persson (Notch) and team have made a healthy amount of cash on the project since it's inception. Recently Paypal limited Notch's account which is now 600,000 euros on August 25th. Paypal reps say the account should be fine in a couple of weeks.

Here's the background of Minecraft where you can see some of Markus Persson's plans for it's future:

About the game

Minecraft is developed by Markus Persson. It's been under development since about May 10, 2009.

You can read theĀ full credits here, or read aboutĀ support and frequently asked questions here.


I started Minecraft after playing some Infiniminer with a couple of people from TigSource.
I realized that a game that simple yet that dynamic had a lot of potential to turn into a really great game, and kept coming up with things I wanted to change and stuff I wanted to add.
I had recently quit my job as a game developer to be able to focus more on indie game dev during my free time, and I was looking for a new game to develop. I had a few ideas floating around, but most required really long development times.

These two factors led to Minecraft.

Development and philosophy

Waterfall is dead, long live agile!

I've got a few plans and visions, but my only true design decision is to keep it fun and accessible. There's no design doc, but there are two lists; one for bugs, and one for features I want to add but think I might forget.
I make sure to play the game a lot, and I've built my share of towers, and flooded my share of caves. If something ever doesn't feel fun, I'll remove it. I believe that I can combine enough fun, accessibility and building blocks for this game to be a huge melting pot of emergent gameplay.

I strongly believe that all good stories have a conflict, and that all good games tell a good story regardless of if it's pre-written or emergent. Free building mode is fine and dandy, but for many people it will ultimately become boring once you've got it figured out. It's like playing a first person shooter in god mode, or giving yourself infinite funds in a strategy game.. a lack of challenge kills the fun.
For survival mode, I'd rather make the game too difficult than too easy. That also means I'm going to have to include some way of winning the game (or some other climax) to prevent it becoming too exhausting.

But if it's no fun, I'll redesign.

The future

I plan on developing Minecraft until it's a finished complete game, with a downloadable client (with fullscreen mode), custom key re mappings and possibly modding support.

For as long as people enjoy and purchase the game, I will develop extensions after the game is done. These will be free for anyone who has purchased the game.

Once sales start dying and a minimum time has passed, I will release the game source code as some kind of open source. I'm not very happy with the draconian nature of (L)GPL, nor do I believe the other licenses have much merit other than to boost the egos of the original authors, so I might just possibly release it all as public domain.

I was curious as heck about how it was done. Here's some of the tech behind the game for you hacker types:

Minecraft uses the following technologies:
Java by Sun Microsystems
LWJGL (license) by a whole bunch of talented people.
"3d Sound System" by Paul Lamb
JOrbis (license) by JCraft.