Can You Dig It?

Can You Dig It?
Crafting Oblivion

John Funk | 11 Jan 2011 11:52
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Lionheart, however, believes that Minecraft's success lies in the community that has coalesced around it. "Whenever anything is being built, there's always someone willing to help out. Roleplaying servers also exist, with economies, guilds and even nations. It's refreshing playing a game where cooperation is freely given without any incentive, and the only reward is the satisfaction of completing a project together." Perhaps unsurprisingly, Lathania - the one who was attracted to the project because of its sheer magnitude - thinks that the game's appeal is due to its unfathomable sense of scale. Every Minecraft world is roughly eight times the size of the world to scale, he says, and since it's randomly generated no two maps are ever the same. "Some of the landscapes that are generated are absolutely mind blowing ... [it's] a big game," he says.

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Minecraft is obviously many things to many people, but there's a community of players just like the ones working on the Imperial City project, who just seem to want to rebuild things that already exist (whether in fictional worlds or the real one) rather than striking out and creating something completely unique.

That's not a bad thing at all, says Lionheart. "I'd like to think that's a deep appreciation of the imagination and design behind many of the real-world objects we know about, and the games we play. I've seen examples of people building the Coliseum, York Cathedral, and even the world map of Zelda: A Link to the Past. One person from our server previously made the character sprites from a number of Final Fantasy games."

"It's a great tribute to all of the architects, engineers, and builders, and games developers out there. And, in some respects, it's a way in which we get to share in the experience of constructing these objects and claiming a little ownership of them for ourselves," he says.

So after the monumental task of recreating Imperial City is done, what would its creators like to claim a little ownership on next? Lathania is of a similar mind to the person who recreated Zelda: A Link to the Past. "I've always wanted to replicate a 1:1 scale of the Fire Temple from Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time," he says, and that's certainly a better choice than the thrice-damned Water Temple. As for Lionheart and Blackadder? "Maybe the Normandy from Mass Effect," says Lionheart. "I absolutely love that game, and the project would be tad smaller than one we're currently doing."

A bit of an understatement.

John Funk can barely build a cave.

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