Yes, Minecraft is Still A Thing

Yes, Minecraft is Still A Thing

More people play Minecraft than own the Xbox One or Wii U. So why doesn't anyone talk about it?

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For what it's worth, Video Games Awesome just got back into Minecraft this past month, visiting their server and showing off the stuff their subscribers had built, and then starting up a second one that they visited a few days ago. And what's-his-name from Vinesauce did his first-ever Minecraft stream as part of a 24-hour stream-a-thon. But yeah, I'd love to see -- for example -- Yahtzee do a "Minecraft revisited" video some time after 1.9 drops, since it's such a different game than it was in 2011.

Also you've got a couple links in your article that don't actually go anywhere, btw.

I think it is also a generational issue. Both my wife and sister are pre-school teachers and they both attest that Minecraft is huge with the 4-6 year olds. Minecraft is perhaps the single biggest game ever in the below 13 years old demographic, a demographic that plays a lot, watches a lot of youtube and discusses a lot with friends, but doesn't have a very large online presence in the broader gaming community.

I can second what Gethsemani says, if you ever need to make a boy under the age of eleven go wild with excitement at short notice, simply say the word "Minecraft". There's not a whole lot to discuss on forums like this though, however awesome that castle you built may be, it doesn't really convey well in words. Still active and building on my own worlds, personally.

I wore minecraft out and just couldn't turn it into what I wanted so I'll wait for minecraft 2 to add some more stuff. Mods help but sometimes you just cant get the game to do what you want.

Just an hour or two ago I watched a video where some guy from Microsoft said "minecraft is coming to xbox". Minecraft is the herpes of the gaming community, it just never quite goes away.

I remember watching Totalbiscuit team up with a young fledgling channel called bluexephos and the yogscast! For awhile I watched the charming-'cos-they're-bad graphics and animations. Then after watching a series evolve from playing from scratch (starting with nothing on a small island, if I remember rightly) up to a Lost reference, I got REALLY sick of it. Ever since minecraft has been the wallet slap gif from family guy.

It's impressive in it's persistence.

I'm good with this. Across the different platforms I've played it on this year, its second only by two hours to Saints Row IV for me. I've clocked a good 67 hours this year with Minecraft and even though most of that was in the first two months of the year, I'm sure it will get another 40 to 50 hours of playtime next year.

It's fun and (time) commitment free.

it is weird how its not mentioned despite the number of people playing it, its the same sort of thing with the sims series, unless something specific happens like a screw up its never mentioned

Of course it's still a thing. It's a cultural icon at this point. As an IP, it's also worth billions of dollars, so that tends to grant a bit of staying power as well.

It's like Lego but without having to decide which of your utilities you're willing to forego for your hobby.

You also have to really appreciate how much it's teaching some kids about computers and electronics with all that redstone stuff. Both Minecraft and Kerbal Space Program have done more for STEM outreach than anything I've ever seen in my life. Just a few years ago, you wouldn't even know what an accumulator or Hoffman transfer orbit was until your second or third year of college, now there are 5th graders who know how to design and implement them. That's pretty impressive.

how come they didn't say how many people own the game on ps3 and ps4? i have it on ps4 and only ps4

I've played it obsessively, but I've lost interest (again) mainly because I got hit by a "what's the point" slump with it, like I do with WoW every single expansion.
The mods are by far the most interesting once you've done the whole vanilla survival experience, but unless you play on a stable server, with stable people and a competent/reliable admin, you will encounter a large amount of very frustrating problems.

For me, the most interesting part about Minecraft and the influence it's had, is on youtube. So many people started out with Minecraft, but moved on to a host of other games and have distinguished themselves by being funny, creative or just chill people to listen to while you do your own thing.

My thought on the game is that the Mojang team should to make a modding API, even if they have to rebuild the game from scratch. Everytime I pick the game up again to play it with friends, we inevitably run into the same damn issues where someone can't get the mods to work, because you need an obscure version or they have the wrong version of Java or whatever else the problem is.
While it's nice that they upgrade the vanilla experience and a small amount of "meh" content occasionally goes out, tons of mods might become incompatible, which have far more content and expand gameplay in hundreds of new directions.

While they might not make the biggest amount of money on it, I at least have half a dozen friends I could easily persuade to jump in.

With modpacks like Feed the Beast and whatnot, Minecraft has grown into something so much more

I keep coming back to it about every three or four months to see what mods I can get now - and its so much fun to explore and build with.

Nuclear reactors, space-rockets to go to minecraft-moon and minecraft-mars, modular power armor, all kinds of different magic systems - minecraft mods have done amazing things to add longevity and endless posibilities...

I mean, I have a mod that lets me craft a sprinkler to water my crops! Combined with a mod that adds a ton of new fruits and veggies you can grow, I can now make cheeseburgers in minecraft!

I figure more people play Minecraft than own an XBone or a Wii U because... it's been out longer and is much cheaper to own? Also it appeals to a wider audience than Nostalgia-clinging Nintendo console or "we're cool no really" Xbox console.

I have a 13-year-old brother who's been super into Minecraft for years now because he liked the independence it gave him with playing by himself, it's clean, it encourages kids to be creative (which I'll gladly accept; I'm sad at how lacklustre his creativity is otherwise) and there's a buuuunch of stuff for it. I'm not complaining; I like being able to buy him Minecraft stuff every year that's like ten bucks instead of him wanting a 300$ console or something else electronic and expensive.

I personally play it for creative mode because Survival doesn't do anything for me and if I wanna build giant Companion Cubes out of wool 200 feet in the air then no one can stop me. It's a good way to just relax and spend some time in a world you make yourself and a lot of other games (other than maybe Animal Crossing) don't really do that unless you find a really peaceful spot in Skyrim... but even then, its saving grace is Jeremy Soule's music, not really that the atmosphere is peaceful like Animal Crossing or Minecraft.

What was I talking about? Oh, right. Yeah, it's cheap and the demographic is wide. There ya go.

Minecraft will never go away.

Now excuse me I need to get back to modding MC into TES2

I think Minecraft serves as a great reminder that not all kids have low-attention spans. It blows my mind how it got so popular.

Honestly, if you'd have told me that something as open-ended and devoid of objectives as Minecraft would be commercially successful, let alone with children, I'd have called you insane.

As for the folks still playing it - download Feed the Beast for a complete MC experience. I don't know if something more popular / less-resource-intensive has popped up since, but that modpack completely revitalized MC for me.

Why would it go away? It's pretty much legos but without all the cost and mess.

I could never get into Minecraft, to be honest. People make some cool things and do wacky stuff in it, which is interesting to watch, but I don't have the time or drive to figure it all out on my own, especially this late in the game.

People are still writing articles about it. In the last week or so I read an article about some 11 year old winning the world championship of Minecraft.

Gethsemani:
I think it is also a generational issue. Both my wife and sister are pre-school teachers and they both attest that Minecraft is huge with the 4-6 year olds. Minecraft is perhaps the single biggest game ever in the below 13 years old demographic, a demographic that plays a lot, watches a lot of youtube and discusses a lot with friends, but doesn't have a very large online presence in the broader gaming community.

Although the fact that it has such a huge amount of sway on the next generation is probably itself worth discussing. Most gamers don't really talk about anything outside of their immediate circle of interests, though.

I'm waiting for the Crash Landing 2 modpack to come out before I go back to Minecraft.
I played the hell out of it. And the end out of it. And the Aether with the mod. It's great on it's own.

But I think it has quite a few flaws and wasted potential. Post 1.6 Mojan started adding half-assed ideas into the game. People would request something, they would add it. But not think it through. They would simply add it. then they would spend several versions trying to fix the fuck up and give up because they aren't competent enough and move on to adding a different half-assed idea and repeat.

They still have to fix hunger and make it meaningful. Potions are nice but you can still easily win the game without it. They only recently somewhat fixed enchanting, but not completely and mob grinder are still an essential thing to any world. Past a certain point getting resources is a chore and forces the player to cheat out the system in order to make grinder for them. Many materials are finite in generation and are used in practically everything while traveling through the world isn't really all that interesting. Gethering them is annoying so you are forced to make some kind of grinder for them. Iron golem farm for iron, zombie pigmen farm for gold, witch farm for glowstone. Breed vilagers like there is no tomorrow to sell them your junk to get emeralds. Breed them more and use those emeralds to buy unenchanted diamond tools and armor because lol mined all diamonds in a 10k x 10k area.
And to top it all off, everything is later on so ridiculously time consuming that I just can't keep playing. Playing for 2 hours and seeing almost no progress because I spent a big chunk of the time on some things that don't add anything to the game isn't really fun.
Which is why modding is kinda essential if you want to keep it playing in the long run. Download some mod that will fix the problems, add some change and play.

I think the lack of coverage is also related to the nature of the gaming media. The gaming press reacts to the gaming industry, not to gamers. Since Minecraft has been out for four years, there isn't a development house or publisher making such a big deal out of it. The result is that the gaming press doesn't go over it either.

Gethsemani:
I think it is also a generational issue.

That might explain why I just don't "get" minecraft.

I gave it a sincere try but I'd always get bored once I was done making my cozy little house on some picturesque location.

I've tried to rationalize ppl having fun in MC as it being similar to how I enjoyed lego as a kid, dunno how accurate that is, but yeah otherwise MC is one big puzzle to me. I'm a friggin dinosaur :(

To quote Top Dollar:
A man has an idea.
The idea attracts others, like-minded.
The idea becomes institution.
What was the idea?
That's what's been bothering me, boys. I tell ya: when I used to think of the idea itself, it put a big ol' smile on my face.
You know what they got now? Minecraft greeting cards.
image
Isn't that precious? The idea has become the institution, boys. Time to move on.

The same reason when discussing the cultural landscape of modern music we don't discuss the latest album by the Wiggles or whoever is the huge hit with the kids.

It's not that they're bad, but they're almost their own industry.

Minecraft isn't a game, it's a platform.

And I actually take issue with the thesis of the article. Plenty are discussing it, people are making a living just doing let's plays of it. It's just here at the escapist and other media outlets of similar ilk the audience has moved on.

 

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