Are you one of the 31 million plus people who have registered for Minecraft? I am, and I can do you one better than that – I am also one of the 6 million plus people who bought the game. Typically speaking, sandbox indie games just aren’t my thing. Give me tabletop D&D or if it has to have graphics, I want something stellar that will totally immerse me into the game, like LOTRO or Skyrim. But Minecraft?
When I first saw the game I chuckled as it reminded me of the epic video arcade games of the 1980s. You know what I’m talking about, games like Pac-Man, Galaga, and Frogger. From what I understand, if you wanted “the good graphics” in the 1980s then you had to look to side-scrolling slash-and-hack games like Golden Axe. But, I digress!
Mine It, Craft It, Play It!
If you haven’t played Minecraft, then let me tell you what you’re missing. It’s a dynamically-generated map created from blocks that are one cubic meter in size. Plants grow, items are created, and hostile mobs come out to fight the moment the sun dips beneath the horizon. That’s right, it has zombies! (Sadly, they’re not as cool as Walkers but hey, zombies are still the big Schmidt. Even my favorite text MUDs
You can make tracks across your maps that allow you to travel in your mine cart. When I tried this, it was actually faster for me to run or fly my character over to the destination point. I know because when a contrary cow got himself stuck in my mine cart, I pushed him uphill and raced along easily beating him to the finish line. Then I freed him from his makeshift cage. (Mmm, steak. Glad I won’t have to share it with the Zombies and Creepers!)
One Crafty Game
What I love most about Minecraft is that it’s bringing back the crafts that I enjoyed growing up. From counted cross-stitch and plastic canvas to plastic perler beads, types of crafts that I thought were a thing of the past are back in fashion. Apparently I’m not the only person who’s fallen victim to Minecraft addiction. Have you been to Etsy.com lately? People are selling everything from tissue boxes to magnets that feature a Minecraft-inspired design.
Lego MineCraft Micro World Sets
In the winter of 2011 Lego caught the Minecraft bug and just a few weeks after the New Year announced that they would develop sets inspired by the sandbox indie game. A month later they announced that the first Micro World set of Lego Minecraft blocks were available for pre-order and would be released around 2012. In the world of Lego, Minecraft now ranks up there with film greats like Star Wars, Pirates of the Caribbean, and Marvel hero characters – which by the way are not only based on a movie, but also a video game.
MineCon, the official Minecraft convention, took place in November 2011 in Las Vegas, three months after the launching of the MineCon website. The convention coincided with the launch of the game and offered contests, parties, and exhibits by Minecraft-related and other gaming companies. The best part was the free codes that were given to every attendee that unlocked two other games. All 4500 tickets were sold out, and it’s no wonder. If I would have known then what I know now, then I definitely would have shelled out the cash for a ticket.
Whether you went to MineCon 2011 or not, if you’re a fan of the game then you’ll be interested to know that MineCon 2012, while no date has yet been announced, is scheduled to take place in Europe. If it doesn’t completely sell out, I for one will be shocked. In the last 24 hours from the point at which I’m right now typing this, over 90k people have registered for Minecraft, and of that number more than 11k bought the game. Overall, an average of 20% of the people who register end up buying it, whether it’s the Minecraft Pocket Edition or the Xbox 360 version.
It's still not as cool as my favorite text-based MUDs
, but overall it's not bad for a mere sandbox indie game.