Monday, September 1, 2014

What to do if... #1

What to do if...
you're outside at night on your first day

Don't blame yourself. Maybe there wasn't a tree for miles, or you took a little break and came back to find it was getting dark. But, of course, what do you do if you have no shelter?

 1.Find a good spot which is open to the sky, so zombies on top of your house will burn in the daytime.

2. Yes. I know. It's the Golden Rule of Minecraft being broken.
Dig straight down,with your fist. Only 3 blocks though. That'll be enough.

3.Dig out the area a little.

4. Finally, block up the top with the dirt you've collected. Cobblestone is just used as an example, the torch is just for visibility is the photo.

5 Most Popular Mods-the ups and downs

A lot of Minecrafters play modded Minecraft, and there are just some mods that are so popular, you'll never see a modpack without at least one of these mods in it. Here's the lowdown on the 5 most popular mods!

A mod that 'supposedly' is still a work in progress, but that's hard to believe. There are several dimensions and tons of mobs and blocks.
Pros: The mob ideas and models are great, and the dimensions look awesome.
Cons: Remember what I said about work in progress? The mod is buggy, with quite a few world-corrupting glitches. Even though the title is 'DivineRPG' there is little story to the mod. Some of the mobs added can destroy you while you're still punching wood.
A good idea is to defeat the ender dragon and get full diamond armor, then get DivineRPG.
Rating: 6/10

A mod that mimics the popular game Pokemon. This mod is the leading pawn in the legion of Pokemon-based mods.
Pros: Despite the title Pixelmon, the Pokemon textures are very high-definition. So are the models. The mod is very easy to use, and great for multiplayer.
Cons: Where are the move animations? Normally in Pokemon, a move like Bubble has pretty blue bubbles as its move animation. In Pixelmon, the Pokemon just leaps at the other. The only one they got right was Tackle.
With a texture pack ,it looks even more  like Pokemon. Best served with multiplayer.
Rating: 9/10


An amazingly in-depth mod that you can use easily.
Pros: Mining away a huge area? Check. Endless cobblestone? Check. Powerful armor? Check. this mod has everything.
Cons: For a beginner (like me) it's really confusing.
There are a lot of add-ons for this mod, like Gregtech.


MoCreatures aims to make Minecraft more realistic, by adding more peaceful mobs scattered around.
Pros: Nice textures, realistic models, and biome-specific spawning.
Cons: Not really that many.
Works good in a modpack. Try making a zoo!

A mod that adds magic. Yep, loads of other mods do that. But this one adds it in a different way to all the rest, which is nice.
Pros: The textures are awesome and there is a good story to it.The magic is great, but not OP.
Cons: Some of the features, again, can be a bit confusing.

All these mods are some of the most popular, but there are thousands more. Maybe, in the next version of Minecraft, a new mod will rise to the top.

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

A Parent's Guide to Minecraft

Recently, someone asked me about PC Minecraft. I'm sure there are many parents wondering about I proudly present:
A Parent's Guide To Minecraft!
Basic Minecraft:
Minecraft PC is a 3-D sandbox game. It is one of the very few games where you can do whatever you like with it-and you can also make goals and do challenges, plan and strategize in Survival. Minecraft is largely based on real life, with a few exceptions. Terrain is split up into Biomes. The biomes that have been in Minecraft for a long time are: Jungle, Swamp, Forest, Plains, Extreme Hills, Ice Plains, Taiga,Ocean, Desert and the sole unrealistic biome, Mushroom Island. If you are starting Minecraft now, you'll probably get these biomes added in: Mesa, Savvana, Sunflower Plains, Roofed Forest, Birch Forest, Flower  Forest, Mega Taiga, Extreme Hills+, Ice Plains Spikes, Deep Ocean.

Seed: A random number(occasionally a word) that can be entered upon creating a world, that tells the game what kind of world to make. Have a notepad ready for good ones!
Server: A world that allows others to play with each other remotely. Each server has an I.P- enter this in to add it to your server list.
L.A.N: A world that is like a server, but can be turned on for a Singleplayer World and only lets people in the Local Area Network. Good for playdates as it lets your kid chat to the other person instead of typing in chat.
Lag: This happens when the game has a lot to load and makes the game look less animated the worse it gets. if it gets too bad and the game can't handle it all, the game crashes.
Mod: A document that can be added onto Minecraft to make it different. Careful-some may be buggy.
A modpack is sometimes a complete different application to Minecraft, and is a whole load of similar mods bundled together.

Multiplayer can be a fickle thing. On one server you can look in the chat and see several swear words, on another it will be nothing but "I'll trade 10 such'n'such for 3 such'n'such". There are several types of Servers, one being PvP (Player Vs Player) where people battle of diamonds and valuables.  I don't really reccommend this unless it is a private server. A variation is Factions, where players form teams.  A very common type of server is a server full of Minigames. These are better than PvP but once again, a private server is better!
My advice is to ask a techspert friend of theirs to make a 'private server'. This type of server can only be accessed when the person who made the server is on it, and is quite safe.

Info! When a player in Survival gets damaged, they go red for a second. The same happens with mobs.

Creeper: A very frustrating creature that sneaks up behind you, hisses, then blows up.
Zombie: A green, humanoid creature that burns in the day.
Skeleton: A skeleton that fires arrows.It also burns in the day.
Ghast: A weeping jelly fish that fires fireballs at you.
Zombie Pigman: A humanoid pig (that drips slime) that gangs up on you.
Slime: A silly looking cube of jelly that splits into small Slimes when dead.
Blood and Gore has never, ever (and it never will) been featured in Minecraft.

So I hope, to all confused parents out, there, that I've explained what YOU need to know!

Sunday, January 12, 2014

Editorial: Are the boss battles getting too easy?

Recently, I had a playdate with my best friend, and I asked him how we would defeat the Wither boss on our LAN world.

“Simple” he said.”We first use the Soul Cages mod to make a Wither Skeleton farm. Then I’ll make a forcefield, plonk the wither in it and BZZAP, 9,000 volts and an instant Nether Star for us!”
Then I asked him how we would kill the Ender Dragon.

“That’s harder” he said.”We’ll go to the End, and make a forcefield that things can come out of but can’t come in. Then we just arrow the Ender Dragon to death without him laying a wing on us.”

See what I mean?

This conversation was talking about defeating the vanilla bosses with FTB Ultimate installed. With some other mods out there, killing the bosses just needs redstone, machinery and mods. 

I’m thinking the boss battles are getting too easy with all these mods.

Maybe it’s because everyone has killed the Ender Dragon that they’re making more OP stuff. It’s even getting easier in Vanilla. Some Minecraft experts - Paul Soares Jr, for example - can defeat the Wither boss in under a minute without taking all that much damage. 
Also, there isn’t that much pride anymore in killing the Ender Dragon or the Wither. A dragon egg is pretty much just something to prove you killed the Ender Dragon without being called a liar.
A Beacon only gives its effects when you are really near it, and with all that light you won’t need to kill any monsters near it. Once again its only other use is to prove you killed the Wither without being called a liar.

Maybe Notch should add more reward in killing the bosses, because the problem is that there is not much pride in it any more.
Everyone’s done it-where’s the pride?

It's not just PC...

While the PC version of Minecraft is awesome, there are other versions of Minecraft out there that quite a few people have never played.

Are they as good as PC edition?

Pocket Edition

Pocket Edition is a version of Minecraft for iPads, iPhones and suchlike.

It isn’t as good as PC by far, but there is one thing that looks really good - the fact that the sun's position and not the light level determines the way that mobs look. It can sometimes appear that you have a shaders mod even if you don't.

Then there’s the invisible bedrock wall at the world limit. It looks really mysterious, but it means that worlds are finite. Bummer.
MyTip: Mine to the invisible bedrock wall in your mine. You can have an indication of the time of day underground.

Grass doesn’t spawn natrually, leading me to think that you couldn’t make a farm. But you can grow grass with bone meal, and later on I found that you can hoe grass blocks to get seeds. 
There is no End nor is there a Nether, but the Nether Reactor does exist.

In one world that I spawned in in creative mode, I decided to do in Survival mode, but I didn’t find out until too late that the world had no water. Yep-the entire world had not one block of water. Also, there don’t seem to be many biomes. The only ones I found were Forest, Taiga, and Desert. Forests have far less trees, and the same for Taiga.

There are some things in Pocket Edition that really should be implemented into PC:
1.     The Stonecutter. It really makes sense that some things just can’t be made in a crafting table, like walls and stairs.
2.     When you shear a sheep, the colour of the sheep is the same as the dots of leftover wool, which makes sense.

Star rating:***

XBox 360 Edition

Xbox 360 Edition is pretty good compared to Pocket Edition.

The worlds are still finite, but instead of  256x256 blocks, it’s 862x862 blocks. 

Curiously, there is no bedrock wall but an infinite, inaccessible ocean. Also, the player starts with a map in hand.

Cave Spiders and Endermen still exist, and there is an End and a Nether. The fight with the Ender Dragon is a little different. An unfinished End Portal is present, with no portal nor dragon egg. The dragon will attack Endermen as well as you. The portal acts as a ‘nest’ for the dragon, and the dragon also spews out ‘Ender Acid’, a Ghastball-like projectile that cannot be deflected.

Helpfully for first-time players, there is a tutorial in Xbox 360 Edition.

There are ravines, NPC Villages, Abandoned Mineshafts, and Strongholds.

Star rating:****

So are these editions worth it? That’s entirely up to you!