Since being on WordPress, I believe I have called myself a hypocrite on at least two occasions. I’m now going to be saying it again…
I’m a hypocrite for thinking that it’s wrong to judge things that you haven’t actually done before, and then hold on to the same irrational judgement over a game.
I am of course talking about… Minecraft…
And as I write this I realise I’ve been wrong and blind over a lot of things. And I realise that although I say that I have no ability to be anything other then myself, it’s nothing more then a lie I created for myself.
Sometimes the lie is so strong you start to believe it yourself.
Please don’t think that I’ve tried to manipulate you, my dear people that choose to read me and help with comments. The wall has only just started to crumble. And from now on, I’m going to try and be as honest as I can.
Honest with myself.
So I wanted to share with you the game that is teaching me the skills for life, the game that has so many good qualities, the game that gets judged unfairly on a constant. I guess it’s because people find it hard to see past it’s looks, and people fail to see the worth in something when there isn’t any straight forward goal.
Minecraft is the most truest to life simulation you can play. Unlike The Sims (which is a game where you make a ‘Sim’, build their house, force them to work and walk them through their basic human life necessities) you are the main character. You basically start in a world, depending on the seed (which is a a random code that you input without knowledge of what it’ll do) you may start in the middle of a desert, in the middle of a jungle, in the middle of a field, maybe even on a random island surrounded by water. Every time you start a new world it’ll be random, everything on it will be random including the location of the trees and the things you need to find to survive.
There are two main modes you can play Minecraft in; Survival and Creative. In creative mode you can fly, you have every block and things you can craft already at your disposal. You can build till your heart’s content because you cannot die, it’s purely another form of media for art. Survival mode however, the danger is real, you need to eat, you can’t fly and there are monsters that come out at night.
Asking what the point of Minecraft is, is sort of the same vague question as what’s the meaning of life? In a nutshell, all it is, is survival, I mean, isn’t that the very essence of the point of life? And I guess if you want to think about it further it’s building a life, exploring the world, taking educated risks. Because the stakes aren’t the same when it comes to life or death in this game as it is to most video games. Most video games are fantasy, when you die you just keep going, keep playing to beat the main objective which is the whole point of this game. When you die in Minecraft however, you lose your place in the world if you haven’t laid out a base with a bed to sleep in, it’ll send you straight back to where you where first placed on the map. You lose everything you were carrying, and if you don’t remember where you died, well then, if you don’t get back there you will lose your whole inventory completely unless you were smart enough to store all your precious stuff in chests. That doesn’t sound to bad right? Most likely though you were carrying your map, which means that may be gone too, so hopefully your memory is good enough, or you laid down enough torches to light your way back to base.
As I said in the bold paragraph, just like life there are monsters who have no other purpose in the game but to attack you, and they mostly come at night, mostly.
But they can also be around during the day. Creepers are your biggest threat in Minecraft world, because they are around at any time of the day. They force you to pay attention to your surroundings, because they don’t make a noise until the fucker explodes. And depending on where you were, that creeper may have blown up the wall of your house, or exploded you off a cliff where you fall to your death. The spiders won’t attack you during the day, unless you swing at them first, but they will turn hostile at night. Zombies and Skeletons are purely out at night and as soon as sunlight hits, they catch on fire and die, but they will respawn again at night. As for pigmen and ghasts, don’t worry about them till you want to go to The End, and slimes, well, they’re adorable but they start giant and will keep splitting into smaller slimes.
Then there’s these guys:
These monsters are more there to torture you slowly, by building up a sense of unease. They make a strange little noise when they’re around, but most of the time will teleport away if they think they are spotted. If you’re incredibly OCD (like me) they will fuck with your head by taking random blocks, so if you’ve built some makeshift steps out of the mountain in dirt, or had to put up a sand wall to keep yourself safe because you are at a beach, you may notice that an enderman has moved the blocks and now there’s a gap in your steps or a whole in your wall. If you look one directly in the eye then it will go berserk, scream at you and try to kill you. And that’s totally fine because you need the ender pearl that they drop to craft stuff that you need.
Minecraft forces you to think logically with their lack of direction. Ok, so you get dropped in the middle of a world without any tools, only a map. What do you do? Well, wood is probably a good start, go beat down a tree. That tree is going to drop a sapling so remember to pick it up and replant it, because the trees won’t spawn back naturally once you chop them down. Now, you need to make yourself a crafting table so you can make more useful things like tools. Consider the name of the game for a second; Mine, Craft. You’re probably going to need to mine to find things like coal (for torches and furnaces), stone (for basic tools and maybe a stronger base then just dirt), iron (for better tools and armour) and if you’re lucky and dig for long enough, you may come across the rarest resource in the game, Diamond.
And if you wanted to give the game an end, there is one. It is literally called The End, where you kill a massive dragon and the credits roll.
If I keep talking about this then this blog is going to be more like a novel to read. Do me a favour, if you can’t play it yourself, try and see the joy and wonder when your kids or friends play it. Because if you just take everything at face value, you’ll never discover new things.