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Minecraft Monday: Top Notch! Team Fortress 2 Hat and “Fair Enough” Madness!

Busy, busy week for Notch this Minecraft Monday.  From virtual and boxy trophies to outright slander n’ libel with some Yogscast brew-ha-ha.  Let’s take a look at what went down!

Minecraft News

As Notch has praised the awesome that is Quake 3 in the past via his tweets, it comes as no surprise that the man is a fan of shooters.  Team Fortress 2 popped up a few times recently and I even posted the video of his match with Valve and other internet celebs a few weeks ago.  Since then, Valve suddenly gave Notch his very own hat to use in-game!

Basically it is a cardboard box decorated with colored bits of cardboard boxes.  With a hat.  It looks clunky, angry, and awesome, but also makes me warp back to Aqua Teen’s Boxxy Brown:

There’s a minor bit of language in there a minute or so in, so a slight NSFW warning.

To further emphasize the importance of the hat, they gave it possibly the longest detail text of any item in Team Fortress 2:

Welcome to a secret society so exclusive it makes the Illuminati look like a Costco. How exclusive? You are the only member. This is the only item of its kind in all of existence. So don’t craft it, Miney

Tongue-in-cheek with the ‘don’t craft it, Miney’ of course relating to Minecraft, but also because you *can* craft in TF2.  Just… when you do, the item breaks into bare components.  And I don’t think cardboard is really a major aspect to more than a handful of items.

“Fair Enough”

Oy, this one is a doozy and a half.  Short version of it is, allegedly, Notch got wasted during the after-party of Minecon and started trashing Yogscast quite badly.  Which lead to Yog’s site getting DDOS’d several days making their website inaccessible and… yeah.  Bad stuffs.

Yogscast ended up posting a detailed play-by-play here, stating they not only had to pay for their own airfare but that Notch sold the video rights to IGN without their consent.  Their podcast of the event was going to be property of IGN.  And they weren’t going to be paid for attending, either.  Shortly after Notch tweeted a picture of a brand new watch he got for $5,000.  Bad timing?  Bad taste? Eh, just plain ol’ bad I say.

After that long post by Yog that they had to post on reddit because their site was more or less taken down by the DDOS attack, Notch responded with only “Fair enough.”  Those two words exploded the comment section, possibly converting any that were still on Notch’s side by his cryptic and nearly shrugging statement.  Yog put in a lot of time and effort that went unrewarded minus meeting many fans, who quickly turned against them by the ranting of Notch. That very ranting hurt the Yog’s crew pretty deeply.  After making their statement available, Notch merely dismissed it with “Fair enough.” and that was that.

Stranger still is that just hours prior they held a pretty lengthy interview where the three were carrying on like long-time friends.

Strange indeed.  Hope this gets worked out soon, as Notch is pretty much getting some nasty PR beatings while his game is getting glowing reviews.

I heard a tad about this here and there, but would not have really known much about this bit if it were not for bud of the blog, Banhammer’s post. Give ‘em a look-see!

Hope your week goes a bit smoother than Notch’s, everyone!  Happy crafting, and see you never Minecraft Monday!

Minecraft 1.0 Is LIVE! Finally XD!!!

It is Beta no longer, folks!  Notch and the rest at Team Mojang were very happy to announce on twitter just recently that yes, the game is finally launched and live.

Minecraft 1.0 is out. No longer beta. Thank you, everyone. =D

-Notch

So break out that Minecraft client, dust off any of those cobwebs it might have sprung.  It’s a-live!  Igor, it’s A-LIVE!!

Minecraft Monday: 15 Million Registered Players and Counting, Circle Suns and Moons, and a PSA for Project Zomboid

Minecraft Monday!

Hey gang!  Somewhat of a slow news week this time around.  Minecraft will be feature-locked tomorrow as they work on squashing bugs and maybe actually releasing the new content any time soon.  They are still on Beta 1.9 Pre-Release 4, and no new patch in sight.  Still hoping to get one prior to a month from now, but what can ya do?  Onto the curious bits!

Minecraft News

Something that really stood out as annoying to me was Notch’s decision to ditch the old sun and moon graphics and go with a circular model instead.  While the bonus to this change is the moon at least will have cycles (like crescents and full moons and that), the down-side is… it’s a circle.  A circle made of squares… but it is still a circle.  He made a poll and ‘promises’ to honor the result.  But he also mentioned that he added up all the people who voted “do not care” as “round”, putting his preferred look in favor over the actual results.  So while the poll clearly states an advantage sticking with the old square version, he will up and change it anyway.  People have asked to make it a choice in-game to choose from square or circle which Notch outright denied.

I know the first thing that I will be changing once I get my hands on 1.9 >.>

In lighter news, Notch also mentioned that they just hit 15 million registered users.  That’s  six zeros, folks (15,000,000, see?  Six!).  ‘Only’ about 25% of them have paid for the game thus far, but even that is huuuge in terms of marketing and carry over.  Getting people to jump from free to pay is a hefty task, but Minecraft is still finding a way to do it ^_^

Project Zomboid

In a bit of sad news, Project Zomboid has fallen on some really rotten luck recently.  I’ve been checking up on this game from time to time, as it is fully decked out RPG survival game all about living with zombies.  Well, living as long as you can with zombies XD (Including barricading doors, finding supplies, and keeping yourself and any living person you meet sane.  If not they might just up and walk out the door one day.  And if that happens when you are asleep, guess who is going to be starting over in the morning -_^)

The short version of it is they sold their game through PayPal till that got mistakenly frozen.  They went and make a Google Checkout account and made a huge boost of sales through that, but that, too, got frozen.  PayPal has since noted their error and got that account back up, but Google is refusing to release about 80% of their income at this time.  Pirates are copying their game, as all online games seem to draw this crowd, but recently the noticed some pirates were able to access their real deal servers and update their clients to the current content.  It went from old and outdated copies being passed around to full-blown clients being stolen.  To make matters worse, they use a Cloud system and get charged every time someone downloads something from it.  The pirates not only are stealing the game, but charging them to do so.

Over the weekend their apartment got trashed by a burgalar.

Among the emotional damage, they took off with the two laptops with a massive cache of game-related content and code.  While they found a semi-recent backup online, this still was a pretty devastating blow.   To make matters worse, there are a bunch of people dogging the game for delays in spite of these giant obstacles.  Any single one of those would have put a lot of people out straight away, but these guys have taken each one on the chin and continued on.

I just caught a glimpse of in-game footage and highly recommend you guys plunk down the tiny cost of this one for the game as well as to help these guys get back on their feet yet again.  (It costs 5 in Brit-cash, so probably 7ish American.) The game is coming along really well, and even in such early stages it looks like a blast.  If you cannot afford it at this time, at least send them an encouraging email for support.

That’s it for this Minecraft Monday.  Happy Crafting, and we hope you all are gearin’ up for Halloween!  Just a few short weeks away, gettin’ ready?  We leave you this week with some pre-alpha footage of Project Zomboid from the always humorous youtuber paulsoaresjr.

Minecraft Monday: Endermen Portals, Flying Dragons, and Stronghold Locators, oh my!

Herro and welcome to another week o’ Minecraft Monday!  There was a lot of info out the past few days about zee impending 1.9 patch, but ironically nothing new today just yet.

Minecraft News

I gotta call it as I see it, and by golly one of our longtime readers nailed me on an upcoming feature I was completely unaware about.  Turns out last time I posted a Minecraft Monday I added a video about some weird and dimensional goop that was just added to the game by Notch.  Allaweh mentioned people were making comments on youtube about it being some sort of portal dealing with Endermen.

I thought that was weird as Enders were just added and no other mob has their own zone, and Notch even said what the goop was something you’d almost never see.  Logic be darned, that’s exactly what Notch n’ Jeb did.  So a full on Tip o’ the Hat to you, Allaweh!  Be sure to check out her blog, too.  She’s working on a Minecraft world that is a fully fleshed out version of the lands of Hyrule from Zelda and plans on releasing it for all to play on their own, so get your iron swords and leather booties down there and take a gander!  After all, it’s dangerous to go alone -_^

Speaking of that new portal, Jeb posted a livestream of himself playing the current version of the beta 1.9 pre-release patch (which is up to four at this point), showing how to use new items to actually hunt down and find those nifty strongholds.  The process is pretty easy, add a Ender Pearl and a Blaze Powder together and throw it into the air.  Notice what direction it flys and that is your kinda compass to the nearest Stronghold.  Sorta has a Dragon Ball locator feel to it, but I think it’s awesome.

Within these Strongholds lies the creepy Ender or Air portal (conflicting reports), but Jeb was unable to open it in time as he played for about three hours at that point and needed to get to bed XD  Here’s what it looks like with two of the eyes in place, the rest waiting anxiously vacant.

In other News, Notch has added Dragons to the game.  Behold!

Here’s a work in progress of him attempting to texture this beast.  I get a kick out of it.

Personally, I think it looks like the remains of a melted box of crayons poured over a pile of Legos, but it is still totally awesome.  Doubt he’ll stick with this look, but I like it all the same ^_^

When Will Patch 1.9 Finally Release?

As all the stuff was supposed to be ready and good to go in just about eight days, I originally would have said the date they already mentioned, October 18th.  But just yesterday I noticed this rather jarring information on twitter:

At today’s meeting @notch suggested that should keep doing prereleases all the way to Minecon, so my previous tweet about 1.9 is obsolete :)

-@Jeb_

And another one just forty minutes ago from Jeb_, again:

PLEASE REPLY Jeb, is the 1.9 release will be out for october or november?

@Moliuj Notch wanted to wait with the update until Minecon

This goes completely against what they already stated for a few weeks, that the major stuff would be in place and ready to play eight days from today.  Suddenly there will be no official patch of 1.9 until a MONTH later.  This annoys me.

The Twins are not amused, either.

The Pre-Releases are basically the rough draft of the patch the Mojang crew adds things to and updates internally.  When they are polished, they are released officially to the public as patch 1.9 or whatever they are up to.  They are now only focusing on updating these Pre-Releases and seemingly forgetting a great deal of people are waiting for the actual update.  Heck, the only reason we have access to these at all was due to them getting sloppy with 1.8, forcing them to leak the patch out to subdue the growing amount of nerdrage when the past two stated release dates in a row and took the weekend off anyway.  Suddenly changing the whole patching process like this is a major wrong move in my opinion.  Pre-releases are buggy at best, and certainly not optimized with their code.  Most people will not run those Pre-Releases and Mojang is up to its fourth iteration of patch 1.9 already.

I am grateful of all the gobs of new content.  I would be even more grateful if they would actually release it as a usable, public-friendly, patch.  And not a month later than previously stated, when all the stuff that I was looking forward to in 1.8 got pushed back to 1.9 in the first place >.<

Still crossing my fingers they get a decent, public, and relatively bug-free patch 1.9 on October 18th, but it is looking unlikely unless they change their sudden tune.  Hope your week treats you well!  Looking forward for anything specific in the upcoming patch(es)?  I think I’ll go ahead and predict that the first swarm of Silverfish the Misses sees will cause her to hysterically freak out.  Well, it’ll be hysterical for me to watch, anyway XD

Minecraft Beta 1.9 Pre-Release 3 is Live!

Okay, I think this will officially be the last ‘leak’ before October 18th, the supposed last day of new additions to Minecraft until its offical release a month later, November 18th.  (That is not to say Minecraft will no longer be updated, all that is happening is “Beta” is getting lopped off next month.  Everything is shiny, cap’in!)

To quote Jeb:

Third time’s the charm! Minecraft Beta 1.9 Prerelease 3: http://assets.minecraft.net/1_9-pre3/minecraft.jar

(source)

Same way to install it as before, think you just swap out the old .jar with that one and hope for the best.  Be sure to back up all saves before you venture out so nothing dangerous happens to them!

Speaking of potentially dangerous stuff, behold zee GOOP!

No idea what it is, or what it does.  But it looks trippy.  Very.  Trippy.   I am suddenly compelled to recite the intro to Star Trek: The Next Generation in a very bad Captain Picard imitation.  …Which sounds a lot like my Sean Connery impersonation.

Minecraft Monday: Enchanting, Breeding, and Brewing Potions

I know last week I talked a bit about potions and breedin’ and all that, but this week I has shiny, shiny pictures!  Spoiler Alert:  Baby animals are cute ^_^

Minecraft News

With fifteen days until all the major features planned for release to be implemented prior to MineCon, a whole flurry of news has come out in the past few days.  Namely Enchanting, some more info about Breeding, and Brewing or Potion Making.

Enchanting

Enchanting is the act of trying to empower your weapons and armor with a random and completely unknown beforehand Enchant.  Notch likes the random nature of this, magic is rather unpredictable after all.  All that you will know before hand is what item you are Enchanting and how much the cost will be.  Based on screen shots it will cost from 3, 7, or 15 skill points.  (Finally a documented use for the things!)

Here is a shot of the Enchanting table’s outer appearance.  Based on looks it appears to require stone, diamond(s), and a book.  I’m trying not to photo-spam, so here’s a link to Notch wearing enchanted armor.  He claims it looks really pink right now, but the appearance is a lot better in-game.

Breeding

So far Notch has stated animals will follow you once you show them that you have food in your hand.  Feed them wheat and they enter ‘Love Mode’ and if another animal of the same species is also in Love Mode they will breed.  What we have not seen yet is the results.  Well, we did get a colossal mountain of sheep, but that was just a bug and a placeholder.  Behold!  Baby critters!

Fear their innate Kawaaai!

They’ll pop back to normal size in time.  Once then do you can hack and slash or multiply again.  Personally I’d like a Veal option…

Brewing and Potion Making

Currently there are 161 brewable potions in the second 1.9 Pre-release.  According to Jeb_, there will be up to 2,653.  While that is rather high, I’d like to offer a little bit of a warning and say it is an extremely inflated number.  Not only will the ingredients matter, but their number and ORDER with also matter.  Also, there will be varying effects that pop up in multiple potions, including negative effects.

This is a minor point in Minecraft but a definite rant about marketing games in the past and present,  “x combinations” is misleading and an empty promise to your gathered fans.  What really matters are the core options and variables.   (It is quite easy to rack up a high number of character selection combinations by including, say, twenty different eye colors instead of a slider.)

As far as Minecraft goes, there will still be a lot of fun potions to try and tinker with, but don’t expect to see thousands of completely distinct effects is all I’m saying XD

Here is the current list of simple and clean potions people have found in the second pre-release.  Some nifty options, but I’d like to see some crazy combinations really changing stuff with leaps and bounds in the full-fledged version.  Interestingly, Jeb also mentioned difficulty implementing potions recently, making me wonder if potions are getting pushed back to 1.10, or added at all.

Not even a new GUI could save the potion brewing system. I need new inspiration, so I’ll work on something else for a while now =) (source)

Hope you enjoyed the current events and goings-on in Minecraft this week, folks!  The Misses graciously gifted me a bit more than her stuffy nose so I’mma go ahead and have another double dose of chicken soup.  Not the good stuff, of course.  That would be the stellar and salty greatness of chicken stars.

That is what I should be consuming, but alas I am apparently not worth the extra effort and got stuck with a generic brand.  Tune in next week where I am forced to lick a bouillon cube when we inevitably run out of beef flavored Ramen, while we miraculously maintain an endless supply of Nutella.

Minecraft 1.8: Thoughts on the Hunger Meter n’ Food

I’ve been tinkering with the 1.8 patch for a few days now and gotten quite used to the current setup.  It took some getting used to and I had a few knee-jerk reactions, so I kept playing as the game is quite fun, but also to allow me enough time to build up some info to figure out just what I think about the new-fangled hunger bar.

The Good

I like how it refills your health over time.  It adds subtle strategy to the game, as it does not refresh fast enough to survive a beating, but at the same time it takes a lot of minor “oh crap!” moments off the table.  (And while that may sound minor to the bolder adventurers out there, try lighting an never-ending cavern.  When you get to a fork with three or more entrances at once on different vertical locations, lemme know if you don’t fear a “Ssss…” ’round every turn. Did I mention the Creeper explosion does a lot more damage now?)  It provides a helpful boost without being heavy-handed.  If you mess up, the game will curb it for you naturally.  Misjudge a jump and lose a few hearts?  Break a sword in the middle of a fight with a spider?  Swear you didn’t think the water was that deep? Keep the hunger meter full and those aren’t even minor bumps in the road.

The Not So Good

The problem with the hunger meter is that it is quite demanding, especially on new maps.  The Misses and I started out new save like a week or so ago, knowing full well 1.9 will likely change it all and we’ll have to start fresh again.  Just setting up a base takes time, but now to juggle a hunger bar on top of that is pretty harsh for a fresh new landscape.  Sometimes it can take the entire first day to harvest enough wood and find a space to make camp, let alone the hunger costs associated with it.  In the end we built a sturdy base and ignored the hunger all together.  We would harvest some crops but not eat them as why fill the entire hunger bar when only a full bar would help anyway?  We’d jump into a mineshaft and respawn with a hull health and hunger and hoof it back to base just to avoid the annoyance in the first place.

My main concern is that for ten icons, only five actually matter:  the first two and the last three.  The middle ones are just filler and a waste of space.  If you have more than two hearts not filled, you no longer regain hp.  If you have three or less you cannot sprint.  The ‘middle’ five are pointless and only serve to stretch out the time it takes to lose health from being hungry.  Why not allow half a bar to regen your health (10-6), 5 and 4 do nothing as they currently do not, and the last three stay as is with the ‘no running’ rule in place.  This would be a lot more useful, especially with the change to how animals will stay dead unless you breed them in 1.9 or 1.10. (And to breed them takes, of all things, more food!)

…The Rage

The Hardcore mode/option just compounds this further.  I try to play all games as if it were hardcore.  The ‘rules’ are simple: Do not die.  (Bioshock did a doozy on my mental state because of this unspoken rule, I tell you what ^_^)  If I wanted to play hardcore mode that resets your world save every time you die, how would that even work?  If you kill animals they don’t come back, so going on a rampage will help you at first but hurt you in the end.  Grow wheat?  That takes *days* to get started and ends up with you staring at the same four walls, hoping for a crop to pop to eat before you starve and get dangerously close to death at all times.  Eating mushroom stew is about the only option I can think of, and you’d have to be extremely lucky to find any to make a snack out of to begin with, let alone the first day.

I know Notch is actually adding a ‘mushroom biome’ or ‘dirt biome’ in 1.9, but that does not help out right now.  Not to mention the combat upgrades are not in right now, and the xp we get isn’t doing anything but being dropped and picked up by someone else.  I am sure these new abilities will help out a great deal, but again, we do not have these right now, making starting experiences in a foreign landscape a huge step up in difficulty than in the past.  We were given new challenges without the proper tools to combat them, and while I appreciate the constant updates, I think they should have just lumped 1.8 and 1.9 together.

Zee Future

Notch made a comment on his blog that they plan on pretty much finishing the game in the next twenty days.  From October 18th and on they only wish to bug fix, polish, and optimize to make sure the game is spotless before the release a month later.  After that they go back into adding new stuff, but they want “to make sure the release will be as good as possible.”

Minecraft Monday: Item Repair, Strength, Speed, and Invisibility Potions!

Between company and finally getting the Misses to try out 1.8 with the creepy Enderman we lost track of time yesterday.  But I has news and tweets and all that stuff!  Plus I have plans on doing a guide post or two later on in the week about a revamped mining strategy I just found, as well as a mushroom ‘farming’ technique!

Minecraft News

That autumn air is just about here, and I am curious to see if the first frost or 1.9 is going to drop first.  My bet is on 1.9 as there is tons and tons of new content just pouring into that mode.  In fact, SO much content I am kinda wondering what took them so long to come out with 1.8 in the first place.  There are quite a wide variety of mobs being added to the Nether.  The Nether version of a slime looks pretty trippy as every time it jumps it kinda morphs into a blocky slinky and you can see each ‘row’ of it’s body fall back down onto itself like someone catching a pile of books.

Further adding reason to get into the Nether is each mob can drop new items that can either be combined into bars of gold (kudos on increasing the ways to get that!) and even uber epic weapons.  To get builders interested in the scary zone they are even adding nifty new stairs and fences made from the Netherrack Ruins!  Crazy stuff XD

  • Just today even a bunch of news has been released.  The Bethesda lawsuit about using the word “Scrolls” in a game against Team Mojang is going to court (“Weee! :D“).
  • An ironic and possibly unconscious jab back against Bethesda is a new Item Repair feature in 1.9 that works very similar to how you do it in Fallout 3 (a Bethesda title haha).  Combine two broken/used items and get a single item with more uses than the two previously used ones. (source)
  • There will be yet another Beta 1.9 Pre-Release release this week.  “Yeah, it’s a Beta of a Beta :D
  • Jeb mentioned this will likely not be in 1.9, but offers a glimpse of what they are thinking about in the future:

Jeb also mentioned that potions will not be in 1.9 because the Brewing system will not be made in time, though Notch pipped up and added he was not in favor of the proposed idea in the first place.  You can see a glass bottle or vial in the screen shot above.  So the art of it is in at least.

1.9 is shaping up very quickly, keep your eyes peeled for another pre-release on the horizon, folks!  And mind your step in that new Nether.  It’ll be a doozy!

Minecraft Beta 1.9 Pre-Release: Animal Breedin’!

Was just about to hop off for the night when I caught a glimpse of this tweet and a pic from Notch talking about the new animal breeding mechanic he is adding in patch 1.9.

They won’t stop breeding!!! http://imgur.com/qt1Ad?full

-Notch

I think we’ve all been there at one point or another.

He later went on to say how the breeding mechanic actually works.  It seems it is just like feeding pet wolves!  Just hold out some food, feed one and they get those same floating hearts that wolves do.  Then feed another animal to get them to enter that state as well and queue the Barry White.

In a way I’m kinda glad Notch is from Sweden and not New Zealand.  As multiplying with sheep isn’t limited to just sheep there.  Or southern United States.  Either way, glad to see the breeding mechanic is finally getting some… (giggle)  Lovin’.

Minecraft 1.9 Pre-Release Available! Talk of the Adventure Patch 1.10, and a New Friendly Snow Biome Mob!

Well color me all sorts of surprised.  I thought it would be weeks before another update, and already Team Mojang has released Minecraft Beta 1.9 Pre-Release as well as mentioned there will be another patch before November, 1.10!

We’ll do a 1.9 pre-release today, and a full release after feedback. More Adventure Mode content will come in 1.10, we’re splitting it up! (source)

Shortly after, lead programmer o’ Minecraft Jeb posted the link!

Minecraft Beta 1.9 prerelease can be found here, http://assets.minecraft.net/1_9-pre/minecraft.jar (server jar also available) (source)

According to Notch, they are doing another push to get the content out before November, but hearing about splitting the content into yet another patch is surprising.  NPC Villages will have villagers in 1.9, but they won’t do much. (source) Also, possibly the goofiest of news, Notch revealed a new mob, the Snow Golem!

Currently it has been stated that the mobs will be friendly and craftable by the player! (I’m predicting the recipe to be three blocks of snow, two sticks, and some coal ^_^) Currently they will follow you around, spreading snow where ever they go, but will melt in warmer biomes.  They also can throw snowballs, but since snowballs do not actually do any damage, it just annoys other hostile mobs and becomes a bit of a ranged meat shield.  Perhaps we can heal them with snowballs like how we can heal wolves with food?

On the more daring Adventuring side of things, Jeb has been hard at work adding more stuffs to The Nether!  Two new hostile mobs are on the way for that zone, with one being a re-texture attempt.  Add in the new bridges or ruins or whatever they are that he added just the other day and the Nether is finally getting some life back into it!

Two other random tidbits I found were that Endermen are apparently no longer going to be able to move blocks. (source)  If they still can in the future, it will be extremely limited.   Also, the mushroom cow I posted a link to yesterday is going to be called a “Mooshroom.”  Ha!

So that’s all we know for now, but sheesh!  This is just the Pre-release and it’s like four hours old!  Can’t wait to see what they add before it becomes an official Adventure patch XD

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