The PC phenomena is now available for the
XBox 360 with Markus "Notch" Persson's MINECRAFT. Who would have thought
that this humble independent PC game would become one of the most
amazing games of 2011 and more importantly, it's not your average game.
Rather, MINECRAFT is a true sandbox game with a touch of godsim thrown
in for good measures which starts you out in this huge empty world.
idea of MINECRAFT is to create and this is done by collecting wood and
then combining them to form other items and structures. Minerals are
another key item to be found in this game and by digging mines and other
holes in the ground, this can lead you to a variety of precious
materials. This then allows you to collect other items such as stone
which creates even more options for you to build such as your own
mansion and even interactive items such as water wheels to move water
around your structures... ala moats!
However Minecraft is not all about building and creating because when
the night comes so do the strange creatures that inhabit this desolated
world. Animals and monsters prowl the nights and you need to ensure that
you are safe from these creatures.
Another highlight of Minecraft is exploring the world as you walk
through forests and deserts looking for items to collect or places to
build or inventions to create. Like the PC version, survival is the key
to succeeding in Minecraft as you are required you to live the dangers
of this world by creating dwellings to stay safe and inventions to
survive such as weapons.
also need to ensure that your character is fed by fishing for food or
even baking bread. It's quite a surreal yet rewarding experience and
fortunately the 360 version works perfectly with the controller of this
console. It may not be as accurate as having a mouse but the analog
sticks and buttons are a decent substitute. More importantly, when you
are building, the controls are almost a flawless experience which does
not create any controller rage at all.
are also plenty of shortcuts available to streamline your gaming
experience and it's good to see the inventory system has been refined by
not only grouping them into categories but making their selection quite
easy. For those who have never played Minecraft before, in-game
tutorials are available and this is also good for players to get their
head around the 360 controllers.
is fun, although quite limited but the fun comes from creating your own
armour and weapons such as deadly maces or swords. The options for
Minecraft are quite endless and I'm still continuing to build my
underground "Bat Cave" with the Wayne Manor upstairs. There has been
some criticism of the 360 version being too limited as the console world
has a set dimension of 1024x1024 blocks, whereas the PC version is
unlimited. This however has no real impact on your gaming enjoyment.
Lovers of multiplayer will also enjoy that the game supports
four-players via splitscreen and even an 8 player online mode which does
allow you to create some extraordinary environments.
Graphically, Minecraft may not look like anything special on the XBox
360 and sort of looks like a strange hybrid LEGO world. However when
these blocks and ideas are combined together, Minecraft becomes an
amazing experience that is only limited by your imagination. The ambient
sound also takes a backseat in the game as does the music but together
with the graphics, controls and almost flawless gameplay on the 360, it
creates one of the most original games in years.
Additional gaming enhancements such as mods and texture packs have been
promised to the 360 gamers later down the track. Add in a plethora of
achievements from "Getting Wood" like punching a tree until you get a
block of wood or "On A Rail", travel on a mine card for 500 metres and
there's plenty of achievements to be found in the game that will keep
you coming back for more!
So what are you waiting for? Check out Minecraft!