Wednesday, August 08, 2012

Minecraft: Xbox 360 Edition Review

Kon'nichiwa min'na!

Hello everyone!

How is everyone doing? Right now where I am we’re experiencing some really cold weather! It even snowed for the first time in around five years. What does this cold weather mean for us? Well, it’s perfect for us gamers who love chilling in bed or on the sofa under blankets playing out favourite games.

And game I am. A while back I entered a competition on twitter with Xbox 360 South Africa, and I was one of two winners! The question was, if we were given the chance to get a download code for XBLA for the newest release Minecraft: Xbox 360 Edition, what would we build? I answered Nelson Mandela’s face. I won. LOL. So I got the code, got connected to the internet, and downloaded this amazing little gem of a game. I’m probably a few months late with this review, but it kinda didn’t occur to me to review this game until now.

Minecraft is an open-world sandbox game where you play as “Steve”. Now, if you’re expecting Crysis or Skyrim like graphics, you’re gravely mistaken. Minecraft is all about the blocks! Literally, there are absolutely no smooth textures anywhere; it’s all made up of cubes, the whole game. Seriously. Minecraft was originally released for PC’s in multiple alpha and beta releases; currently the PC version is 1.3. The Xbox 360 edition however was ported to C++ and thus they had to start from an earlier version. Enter Minecraft: Xbox 360 Edition v1.6.6 beta. It was updated recently to a later version (v1.7.3) which brought with it a bunch of bug fixes, as well as many new items.

Now, about the items, Minecraft is essentially, as the name suggests a game in which you mine! Shock, surprise! You start every new world, which is randomly generated using seeds, with two things, yourself and a map. At this point it’s completely up to you that to do next. Before you start the world you’re given the opportunity to change the difficulty slider, you can choose Peaceful, in which there are no monsters and your health regenerates automatically, or Normal and so forth where you will have to battle with Spiders, Skeletons, Zombies and those Damned Creepers at night! Once you’ve started the game, you literally have a world at your hands with which you can create what you will. Chop down trees and get some wood, use that wood to then make wooden planks and after enough wooden planks have been created you can start building shelter. Or take a different approach and create some tools that you can use to get better items. Create a shovel to collect sand, which is then used to make glass, or craft a pickaxe which is used to mine stone. Once you have stone, you can use it to create a stone pickaxe, which is used to mine faster and better materials. There are a whole bunch of materials in Minecraft, from stone to iron ore, gold and the rarest and precious material, diamond. There is only a handful of diamond in any given world depending on the random world seed.

People from all around the world have built some amazing things in Minecraft XBLA, from Old Trafford to the Colosseum. Others have created majestic looking works of art such as the Mona Lisa. The amount of freedom that a person has in this game is astounding; you can create and craft absolutely anything that your heart desires. I’m currently working on a Pokémon project where I plan on building some buildings from the iconic games as well as some of the actual Pokémon monsters.
It’s not all fun and games however (Except that it is, haha). There is some form of action especially when it comes to the monsters. Skeletons will shoot arrows at you and Zombies will eat your brains all of which will decrease your life, represented by hearts. If your health is low, you need to regain it by killing a pig, collecting the pork chop and eating it. If you cook the pork chop first, you get more health. Pigs aren’t the only animals there are though, there are also cows which are used for leather which can then be made into armour. Chickens give you feathers which can be crafted into arrows as well as eggs which are used in the baking of bread and cake. Yes. Bread and cake. Squids give you ink sacks and sheep give you wool which can be used to create a bed to sleep in.

Mojang and 4J Studios, the creators and developers of the game, have said that the XBLA version will soon be on par with the PC version and that all future updates to the PC version will be ported to the Xbox 360. The game can be bought for 1600 Microsoft Points on Xbox Live, and it’s definitely a good decision to buy the game because it will give you hours upon hours of fun as well as an outlet to let your creativity run free!

Now if you’ll excuse me, I’m going to go make coffee and carry on playing Mass Effect. Much love.

1 comment:

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