Mining My Way Back To You, Babe | A Minecraft Xbox 360 Edition Story
What is Minecraft? I’ve asked myself that question for the past year and never got an answer. It was mostly my fault but I just never saw why people were so addicted to it. You can build stuff, great, well I have LEGOs. The 8 bit art style didn’t grab my attention either. I’m not a fan of it, or maybe I just don’t appreciate it, not playing games until the mid 90s. With the recent release of Minecraft on the Xbox 360, I figured I’d finally see what all the hub bub was about. Sure, it wasn’t going to be the full Minecraft experience, but it was still going to be Minecraft.
Once I started the beginning tutorial, I knew I’d get hooked within minutes. Hooked because I was in an open-ish world and I could do pretty much anything. I first jumped into a friend’s game, he had a pretty good looking house. I ended up skipping half the tutorial to join his game where I found out that my stuff didn’t come with me. The way saves work is that games are hosted by your friends; you can’t access stuff you built in your own world, you can’t bring materials or tools with you, and vice versa.
The crafting system was a but overwhelming at first, but pretty easy once you got the hang of it. Most things require one resource by default to make and the game lets you know how to make each item, something that’s apparently absent from the PC version as I’m told. The great thing about crafting is that everything is easily obtainable as far as ore goes to make armor and weapons. Finding food and material to make food might be the hardest. There are plenty of trees for wood which is great because that’s what you’ll need most of the time.
So my friend had a mine shaft he made in his house with a trap door, we just kept digging. That was what the game was for me for about a couple play sessions when it finally dawned on me that I could make my own damn house. So I joined another friends game and that’s probably my best game so far. I made a sweet house made out of all that cobblestone I collected from digging underground, complete with doors and windows and my own mine shaft.
The problem came when I found out I was nowhere near my other two buddies that I joined up with. I looked at my map and saw they were on the other side of the world. So I continued digging the tunnel connected to my house until I got to my friend’s house. It took me about an hour, at least 100 torches were used, countless stairs for easy traversal, and several instances where I almost flooded the tunnel. I finally got there where I found that he had been making a big house of cobblestone, too. In the distance, I could see the other friend’s house but what was separating the two was a huge canyon and a lake, each house was atop a big hill.
My first thought was that I had to connect them, because. why not, I had a ton of cobblestone from digging the tunnel. What about a bridge? I started atop the friend’s house I was at, teetering over the edge, placing cobblestone on the little bit of the front of the block I saw when almost falling off. I ended up following several times, my stuff scattering in all directions when I hit the ground below. It was always at night when the monsters came out which made it difficult to grab everything. I got lucky about halfway since there was a deep lake beneath me, so if I fell, I would just fall and just have to walk back to the house where the bridge was.
I finally got the bridge done; I probably went through at least 400 cobblestone but it was worth it. If I could take a picture of it, I would of, but right now that isn’t an option on the 360 version. All of this amounted to me playing everyday since the game came out this past Wednesday. I got a copy of the game for $15 through BestBuy while the marketplace price was $20, but that price is justified considering how much time I’ve played so far. It’s a pretty great feeling when you spend money like that on a game and end up enjoying it immensely, even more than a stand alone AAA title.
Building whatever, making your house bigger, connecting those houses, making a crazy tunnel system, or making the tallest tower ever is just fun. It doesn’t sound all that appealing in a video game, but the mechanics coupled with the control scheme with a controller makes things a lot of fun.
The saving and loading screens give hints and random messages, one of which says that the game will be updated eventually. Any update at this point is just extra stuff. Nothing is broken from what I’ve played, no real annoyances. I assume the updates will be bringing it up to par with the PC version. Paid or not, I’ll be getting it all. I think I’m addicted to the drug that is Minecraft.