For those who enjoy Minecraft, a new update went live today that added horses, rideable horses, with armor barding to the game. Also, other stuffs too, but yeah. Horses.

Over the weekend, my son and I investigated this whole ‘Minecraft multiplayer’ concept.

I took the time to setup a Hamachi LAN network tunnel between our two computers, and sort of kinda got it working with Minecraft. If I hosted the game, Alex’s computer could direct connect to it, but not the reverse.

It’s exactly that kind of thing that can make you throw up your hands in frustration if it weren’t for Google searches. A few minutes revealed that our issue was far from rare, and so, as with so many other Minecraft bugs, you shrug your shoulders and be grateful for what works.

It really is that good of a game.

As an aside, the reason this was an irritation was, the person who hosts the game and opens it up to a LAN can do this with any of their created worlds, and if Alex can’t open one of his uber-cool worlds for me to come explore and admire, it takes a lot of the point out of it. He likes to have me see his awesome creations.

Perhaps today’s content update will fix some of the issues. We’ll see.

Did I mention horses?

We created a survival world at random, and entered it together to see what it was like, playing together. Cooperative. VERY cooperative.

Except when I mighta punched him with a pickaxe.

Yeah, that was pretty much my weekend, right there.

I understand that you really can’t make an MMO in the Minecraft model. A world that every player could mold to their own will would be a battlefield of conflicting creative visions, and if it was a PvP world, then every camping asshat would be seeking to overwrite or destroy the creations of others.

That doesn’t prevent me from wishing that there was a way for a phased area to be set aside for each player, much as the farms are, to be our sandbox to shape as we will.

And to wish such a place, once it existed in game, could be set to allow specific invited guests to come visit.

Minecraft satisfies an urge that World of Warcraft does not; to play an active part in shaping the world around us, to set aside a place where everything is as we wish it, and to say, “This is my home. My actual home, my place of refuge, my fortress of solitude, my oasis of calm midst the chaos of a land eternally at war. Come, friend, take your ease and be welcome.”

In Minecraft, my son and I explored islands, built homes, and crafted defenses against the nocturnal stalkers that hunt the night.

We delved deep, and discovered many things. We crafted weapons and armor that were useful and wouldn’t be replaced by drops, and admired how we each looked. (We looked like 16 bit pixel-people. Wearing tinfoil. It was still cool.)

We fought spiders, skeletons armed with bows, ghouls and ender men that could teleport and who would attack if you dared look them in the eyes.

In creative mode, Alex made fountains of lava, and large structures involving levers, pistons, TNT and other stuff that, well… at the flip of a lever, it expanded, then exploded.

He seemed disappointed that it didn’t explode more.

In talking about our game afterwards, I was musing aloud how I wished the game had one additional thing; a way to hire guards to defend your home while you are away.

How great it would be, I mused, if we could build our giant fortresses with the moats of flaming lava and pens of cute animals, and then hire nearby villagers to come and patrol our walls, defend our gates, protect our strongholds while we are away on our adventures.

My son says, “Yeah, I wish I could walk up to a villager, point my sword at him and tell him, serve me or die!”

True story.

And thus, another evil genius is born.

Now I finally understand what Minecraft is.

It’s the Evil Overlord Starter Set.

Now, they just need the minion content update and we’re all good, right?

So you know what we need to have happen now.

We need the Evil Overlord mod, so you can set up your volcano lair with the bond villain death traps, the sharks with frackin’ laser beams in their frackin’ heads, the minions with the different uniform options (identity concealing helmets or non-concealing helmets), all the bells and whistles.

If you’re going to encourage and promote the world-conquering fantasies of  our children, let’s help them aspire to true greatness, shall we?

Volcano lairs. Gotta have a volcano lair. All I’m saying.

9 Responses to “The Cub Report: Minecraft Double Trouble”
  1. Kemonojin says:

    Minecraft has an adventure mode where you can limit what you can do. Usually used for stuff like making maps with traps and secrets and so on to prevent people just plowing through it.
    http://www.minecraftwiki.net/wiki/Adventure_Mode

    Build a map in creative, then save it and start adventure mode. Looks like fun, but takes lots more attention than I have. :P People have been asking for erupting volcanos for a while now. But with some effort, you can DIY it. :D I enjoy Minecraft but tend to get fired up, play constantly for a few days, then run out.

  2. Celendus says:

    If you’re ever bored of Minecraft as is and want to spice it up, I am completely enamored by Hexxit, which adds dozens of buildings, biomes, a better nether, all kinds of madness. It’s poorly documented so far but really, really cool.

  3. Shane says:

    I went and read that list of 100 things when Im an overlord… I laughed the most with no.99 (Remember Get Smart)… anyways, the file sizes of 1.45mb made me laugh the most… hahahaha…

    Mine craft for Xbox just came out here recently. Ive thought about getting it but im still slugging my way through Skyrim (I have a trusty bow which I use to great effect from the shadows)

  4. valorum says:

    “I understand that you really can’t make an MMO in the Minecraft model. A world that every player could mold to their own will would be a battlefield of conflicting creative visions, and if it was a PvP world, then every camping asshat would be seeking to overwrite or destroy the creations of others.”

    This isn’t for the cub, but you should take a few minutes and look up wurm online (if you haven’t already). It’s where notch was before be broke off and made minecraft. It has PvP servers and what they call ‘freedom’ servers. On freedom servers, you pay a little RL cash and secure a bit of land no one else can touch, then you can completely terraform it the way you want. On the PvP servers, you can set up your deed the way you want it, then someone can come along and destroy it – but you can get your friends together and pay them back, too.

    If the idea intrigues you at all, I highly suggest you check it out. It REALLY competes with my WoW time….

  5. Theodoxus says:

    Sounds like you either need to play, or are nostalgic for: Dungeonkeeper. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dungeon_Keeper

  6. Sacrogoth says:

    Hamachi isn’t necessarily required for a LAN connection, though. My wife and I have LAN games quite often (usually me connecting to her) and we don’t run Hamachi or any other VPN/VLAN type program but Minecraft picks it up on the local network just fine. As long as you’re both connecting to the same router (ultimately, even if via another one if you’ve got a two router setup) and have IP addresses in the same range on your local network (usually along the lines of 192.168.0.xxx) then you should be good to go.

  7. Celendus says:

    Oh also! If he wants minions to defend his home, you can make Iron Golems. They’re not perfect but they’re pretty strong. Build (not on a table, in the actual world) a T shape out of 4 iron blocks, then put a pumpkin on top for a head.

  8. Jaarka says:

    If you really want to explore the whole “Evil Overlord Sim” thing, and don’t want to wait for Minecraft to do it for you, allow me to point you to an absolute gem of a game that, to this day, still has me cackle with glee as I play it over and over again.

    I present to you: ,a href=”http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Evil_Genius_%28video_game%29″ title=”Evil Genius Wikipedia Article”>Evil Genius (currently on sale on GMG for the ridiculous price of $2.99, they even have an extra 10% off coupon you can use!)

    The premise is that you’re an evil genius who want world domination (a la Bond villains) and you design and expand your secret lair complete with henchmen, traps, etc. It’s amazingly fun. I highly recommend it! You even get to build it in an island volcano!

  9. If money allows, try Cube World :D

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