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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.

Kotaku Hates Minecraft – Where Bad Writers Go To Make Money

Weeks ago a chick made some fast cash ‘bashing’ the Magic the Gathering guru over two dates and the ‘article’ she posted only really expressed what a terribly shallow person she was.  Even though the post was both badly conceived and edited, it still hit huge numbers and caused people to blog about it due to how scathing and nonsensical her thoughts were on the subject; as she went on to say “judging people on shallow stuff is human nature.” So when she so shallowly dismissed the lucky guy for no good reason, it wasn’t her fault.  She was just being human.  Nice spin there, right?

Found another ‘winner’ today, thanks to Notch’s blog.

Round two of the equally minded bad ‘journalist’ attacked today when a post on Kotaku immediately jumped to the conclusion as to why Notch is greedy and plans to wring every last dollar out of Bethesda.  I’ll give you a bullet point per paragraph to spare you the same headache I am now going through.

  • He played Minecraft this whole weekend.  So, you know.  …Trust him.  He totally loves the game.  He likes Notch.  Believe his words, friend.
  • Suddenly cites Notch to be the overly vocal and dimwitted leader of the Mojang Gang.
  • Bad mouths the entire team behind Minecraft, stating that they are “less reputable or successful than Zenimax/Bethesda” and that Notch isn’t so much inexperienced with lawyers, but actively using his twitter to strong-arm Bethesda into dropping the case:

…it’s entirely possible Mojang knows they have no case and are simply trying to do as much PR damage to Zenimax as they can before they have to admit they applied for a trademark that will never stand against a serious complaint. They may even be thinking that if they embarrass Bethesda enough, the company will relent. After all, this would not be the first time we’ve seen someone take their grievances against a larger company to the court of public opinion (WINK).

And yes I am completely aware that “WINK” has no link to go to.  Apparently they did not.

  • Further implies Mojang is going out of their way to stick it to Bethesda when they ignored a Cease and Desist order.  Admits utter lack of knowledge of how the law works in Sweden.
  • Goes off on a tangent about radios and television, casually saying he isn’t sure how innocent Notch is in a pseudo-friendly tone, which utterly clashes with the entirety of the ‘article’ already at this early point in time
  • Jumps to the conclusion that Notch not only wants the rights to the title “Scrolls” but that in owning those rights they would then dominate the rights to “The Elder Scrolls” though Notch has gone on to say several times he could change the title of his game, which Bethesda completely ignored.  Also, while I am not surprised to see a curse word online and in-game, I am quite surprised to see one as unabashed and public as it was placed it in this paragraph.
  • Again he describes the patent, and again he is mysteriously amazed at how the law works.  Notch wants to own all the rights to the name of his upcoming game that he announced months ago?  Not just a quarter of the rights, but ALL of the rights?  Dear me…

Let’s assume for a moment that Mojang knows that their trademark would give them leverage over Zenimax, and that they might actually be planning to take action by claiming trademark violation the next time Zenimax publishes a game containing the word “scrolls” in the title.

My, how wonderfully random and unsolicited!  I am sure glad you started out the first paragraph stating you liked playing Minecraft.  If it weren’t for that hollow opening I would begin to think you had sinister intentions to deeply misconstrue your ‘knowledge’ of this lawsuit to better promote one side than the other instead of merely pointing out the facts and calling it down the middle.

  • He frantically tries attaching the two dynamics (Notch and Evil Notch) by stating this happens all the time in the gaming world.  This vague answer is supposed to provoke you, the audience, into thinking “So since it happens all the time and Mojang might be in a good position, they MUST have been planning to do that since the first dev meeting.”
  • The first unbiased and well thought out paragraph thus far, he states that Bethesda couldn’t take the chance that Mojang wouldn’t try anything fishy. Maybe this is where the opposite side of the argument starts up, and we see strong evidence supporting Mojang and just how silly this whole thing has blown up to.

Besides, if Mojang were as naive and innocent as Notch claims, why the far-reaching trademark application?

Well there goes that idea >.>  Right back into zealot-laced diatribe.  Oh, bother.

  • Mojang = Tim “Edge” Langdell.  Basically, if it quacks like a duck, and looks like a duck, but swap out “duck” with “thief” and “a hack”.
  • He then tries to further compare Langdell with Mojang, as his duck concept is foolproof and needs no further evidence or detail.
  • Yet again he brings up his infatuation with radio and tv programming rights.  He feigns being non-biased by using Notch’s words but ultimately only sets up a strawman to break it down in the following sentence.
  • After a convoluted and conspiracy laden paragraph he finally gets to his second actual non-biased fact: Bethesda would be stupid not to fight the claim as it hits so close to home with The Elder Scrolls.  If this get nasty, they could lose the rights to the name of their monstrously popular series.
  • As a final slap in the face against Mojang, he mentions a trademark someone has to use the word “Scrolls” on a t-shirt, but with the last “s” backwards. It is a great deal more than a ‘bit of a stretch’, but if you actually ate up his ‘article’, at this point you’ll continue eating out of his hand at this shoddy statement.

You know how late-night ads are surrounded with the usual jargon of “we do not condone, nor endorse the views or products shown” and all that?  Well, after Notch got wind of this highly fantastical viewpoint, he responded and so too did Kotaku:

UPDATE from Kotaku: Notch has responded to this story, saying that Bethesda declined his company’s offer to add a sub-title to their game and give up the trademark.”

Oh, so you mean a big, huge part of this was purposely left out in order to blow it up into something to cause enough commotion to warrant attention, and thus page views and their juicy, juicy ad revenue?  Heaven’s, what a thought!  If that was the case I almost have half a mind to think that Russ Pitts planned that from the beginning.

And the very end of all is this hilariously over-stated message:

Russ Pitts is the former Editor-in-Chief of The Escapist and former Producer of TechTV’s The Screen Savers. Currently he is looking for work…

Lot of emphasis on “former”, there.  No wonder why he is looking for work.  Such a cheerful, knowledgable, and un-biased guy.  Hey, wait a minute.  Hey, Notch!  You claim to not know a lot about the law, and this guy surely is water-tight in that department.  He seems to be down on his luck, why not give him a shot?

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 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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