Friday, May 4, 2012

Minecraft Releases on XBLA May 9th

Last November when Mincraft officially released Mojang announced that the game will be eventually coming to Xbox Live Arcade as well. That time is nearly here, five days away from it's XBLA release, and they have detailed multiplayer and the game in general. If you've played Minecraft on PC you probably don't care at all, but the console port is looking pretty good. You can play Minecraft with up to eight players on console, with four on split screen if you wish, and it runs sixty frames per second when you play singleplayer, while it will be a little be less smooth with seven other players running around. The world is still huge and procedurally generated with villages, dungeons, monsters, sheep and all that good stuff, but its' not quite the same as the PC version.

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There doesn't seem to be a great diversity of biomes like there is in the PC version, but I'm only basing that on the scant information and videos about the XBLA version. They could very well be in there and no one has shown them off. While they haven't revealed a lot about the world they have spoken about many of the game mechanics. Crafting is very similar to the PC version, except you no longer need to have your faithful Minecraft Wikipedia open, for now there is a nifty crafting menu that shows what can be crafted and displays everything in a very user friendly way. The game is actually not being created by Mojang, instead 4J Studios is creating it, but with help from Mojang presumably. Take a look at the crafting menu to see what I was referring to.
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The game servers will work by letting you invite people from your Xbox Live friends list, but it seems that servers will be open, so anyone can join, but the host will have the power to kick people from their server. Worlds will work like the PC version, in which you create a world and it saves that world, so you may revisit that one or join one of your friend's world. The game will come out as version 1.6 and will receive regular updates, for free, along with DLC. The DLC seems to be free as well, but it's hard to believe that seeing as how Microsoft has a pretty strict policy on DLC not being free. There will be texture support of some kind, but it is fairly unclear as to how that is going to work. Take a look at the Minecraft Multiplayer video they put up today for the XBLA version.

They do have a tutorial video as well that shows off the tutorial world, but I cannot in good conscience recommend it. It is made by the Hat Films guys who have made most of Minecraft's update trailers for a long time, but it is super biased in favor of the XBLA version. I don't know why they would even bother trying to say the XBLA version of Minecraft is better than the PC version, but they do and it's obnoxious. Anyways, Minecraft comes out XBLA on May 9th for 1600 Microsoft Points (about $20). If you wish to learn more about the game then I heavily suggest you head on to the forums for the XBLA version, they are full of information and speculation. Thanks for checking this out.
For more info: Helpful XBLA Version FAQ

-Written by Sean Cargle


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