Built A Tower To The Sky: Minecraft Columbia

By Kieron Gillen on September 19th, 2010 at 3:50 pm.

I want to be playing Ruse, yet I find myself posting this. Because it's that splendid.
This is beautiful. And two things we’re posting a lot about at the moment brought together, like some kind of nuclear fusion of pop-hype. Nukezilla discovered on the Irrational Forums – and the ever-loving Craig Pearson told us – that a load of chaps have got together and built Columbia (off the currently available screenshots) in Minecraft. Frankly, it’s all I can do to stop myself from climbing on my stairs, applauding, and then throwing myself out of the window in total despair, as I’m still impressed at myself for being able to build a wobbly tower.

EDIT: And Darrt points out, the same folk also did Rapture…

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64 Comments »

  1. MartinNr5 says:

    Truly impressive.

  2. bill says:

    Citizen Kane

    • DrGonzo says:

      This is rather true isn’t it? Not neccesarily that Minecraft is the Citizen Kane, but that games like this and Civilization are what games should really be about, and they are completely dependent on the user. You only get as much out of them as you put in. They are also pretty much impossible for anyone not already fluent in games to play.

    • psyk says:

      No, you don’t have to be fluent in games (what does this even mean?) to play minecraft

    • SheffieldSteel says:

      Perhaps the point is that it fits into the “minute to learn, lifetime to master” category. It’s very simple to describe the rules, but you can’t imagine the complexity until you start looking into it.

      Minecraft seems to be the “z -> z^2 + c” of the indie games scene.

  3. Snall says:

    Can someone explain to me why Minecraft crashes constantly for me when loading a new world? And why 99% of the time on my main PC I can’t actually…do anything…like digging/hitting trees, etc doesnt work….as in I can do it a 1000x and it wont give me wood or dig dirt…though I can hit animals…I thought I was clicking too fast…so I clicked slower…but it doesn’t work…but it works sometimes…and then stops working…very rapidly. Blah

    • Ushao says:

      Not sure about the crashing, but you’re supposed to hold down the LMB, not click a bunch of times.

    • Snall says:

      That’s weird as hell…since clicking worked fine plenty of times too…lol thnx.

    • Navagon says:

      Also note that you’ll need to craft tools to do any real work. That wiki should help you get started in the game.

    • Hodge says:

      Are you playing a multiplayer game? If you are, try moving further away from where you start. On the servers I’ve tried, you can’t do anything near the spawn point.

    • DrGonzo says:

      Minecraft crashes for me too. Only the new version does it. Can play for about 5-10 mins and then the framerate drops drastically, then it keeps on opening new instances of itself indefinetely, I have to end it in task manager before the fabric of our existance collapses.

    • Zak says:

      Construct additional pylons.

    • Nallen says:

      Requires more Vespene gas.

    • Heliocentric says:

      Oh, wow. Imagine minecraft supported water evaporation, condensation and air pressure. Giant steampowered machines! Or, multi block boats, or both… Giant lava powered steam boats ahoy!

  4. Khalan says:

    You need to hold the mouse button down, not click.

  5. Psychedelic Squid says:

    Truly impressive. Makes my little hovel (albeit a hovel on a floating island) look pathetic.

  6. Dozer says:

    Would be more impressive made in single-player Survivor mode :-)

    • Torqual says:

      Its not possible, in single player you have not all colorfull blocks at your disposal. But it would be awesome and a huch waste of lifetime.

    • Kdansky says:

      Not a worse waste of time than watching TV. So you can still spend four hours a day and waste less time than the average person.

  7. benjamin says:

    I’m still only barely surviving each day let alone starting on grandiose building projects. Nevertheless, I will prevail.

  8. Moonracer says:

    yeah, my houses are pretty unimpressive so far. I haven’t been able to get in an online mode but collective construction like this amazes me.

    • Torgen says:

      I’ve taken to mounting large subterranean expeditions in attempts to find the 85 chests hidden in dungeons that the mapping program told me were there (no luck so far,) and building “incubation caves” to up the number of monsters at night..

    • Snuffy (the Evil) says:

      I would like to know more about these incubation cubes.

  9. Navagon says:

    Bloody hell! That’s using the free version, I take it? That reminds me how much I miss the coloured building blocks. My tower could use some of those.

    • Clovis says:

      I assume that we’ll be able to color wool in the future. So stock up white wool for now and probably those flowers.

    • JB says:

      I’m sure I read Notch saying something about dyes at some point in the future.

  10. Grandstone says:

    And here I was feeling proud of myself for having dug an eight-story fortress out of the side of a mountain. This is awesome.

  11. Hodge says:

    Yes! I want to see more of this kind of thing (and I have no doubt that we will). Hats off to all involved.

    When I finally finished building my two-story mud shanty and was racing through all the rooms in a kind of victory lap, it struck me how much it felt like the original Quake. All those brown walls with torches everywhere, and the odd monster lurking in the shadows. I’m waiting for someone to do the old deathmatch levels now.

  12. Aldezhar says:

    He is flying so it might be InDev version too.

  13. Alistar says:

    Impressive constructions. I can’t help but thinking that yes it’s impressive and I applaud their efforts but nobody is ever going to use it, probably not even them. They’re going to fly around and make a video of it, then start on something else. I suppose the beauty of Minecraft is each person can play it for their own reasons.

    Personally, I am proud of my multi-level/room tree fort built entirely out of materials gathered from the world. I know that I wouldn’t feel nearly as satisfied with the game if I hadn’t poured my virtual blood sweat and tears into the impressive structure I’ve created. Constantly under attack from nefarious night creatures, yet still erecting a tree palace in honor of Yggdrasil. Being that I cannot fly in my little world, like the above video, I had to use some very risky building techniques that I have named the “livin’ on the edge” and my personal favorite, honed through several days of in-game practice, the “fall-off-the-edge-and-put-a-block-underneath-the-one-on-the-edge-really-fast-then-climb-back-up-and-do-it-again-while-eating-pork-because-this-tree-is-getting-really-damned-high”.

    • DiamondDog says:

      Have to agree with you there. What they’ve done is amazing stuff, but for me half the enjoyment of building something is the extra effort in having to go out and get the materials I need.

      It means that collecting the iron for my simple front door nearly cost me my life.

  14. The Pink Ninja says:

    I spent what must have been three or four hours building a sky bridge from nowhere to nowhere on the RPS server this morning.

    • Jhoosier says:

      Why cn’t I log in to the RPS server? It keeps giving me “Connection refused: connect” errors.

  15. Taillefer says:

    I’d like to see some Thief levels.

    Actually, I wouldn’t mind doing that myself. But I’m not sure I want to do it enough to start reinstalling Thief and getting the level layouts and such. Maybe something merely inspired by Thief, though.

    • pierec says:

      The haunted Cathedral (and whole Old Quarter, really) would be awesome to re-make in MC.

  16. Worrisome says:

    Man. How much time does one spend doing something like this? (Not being cynical “What a waste of life, lol”…genuinely want to know)

    • Andy_Panthro says:

      Considering how long it takes to make a fairly basic structure, this must have taken a lot of hours of work. Could be talking days/weeks really (depending how many hours work per day).

    • psyk says:

      Do you watch tv, read books or go to the cinema? if you do you really should stop wasting your life.

  17. Sigma Draconis says:

    Insane amounts of dedication on display here. Impressive all the same.

  18. Esteem says:

    It’s like…I don’t want to play Minecraft anymore because I know I can’t make something as awesome like this. WHY DIDN”T YOU LOVE ME DADDY? I KNOW YOU WANTED A BOY BUT WHY?

  19. Graham says:

    In other news, GOG just died.

    Sniff.

    • Razz says:

      What what WHAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAT. I thought you were joking until I entered the URL. What the hell, were there any omens for that or is it as completely out of the blue as I think?

    • TimA says:

      Noooooooooooo!

    • patricij says:

      it’s just a stunt…

      -Frankie The Patrician[PF]

    • Shakermaker says:

      What patricij said. Weird stunt though.

  20. W Main says:

    Server i’m currently frequenting has also built a massive Rapture underwater. Screenshot can be found here:

    http://www.leftmousebutton.net/wp-content/uploads/2010/09/minecraftrapture.jpg

    Awesome amount of fun!

  21. TychoCelchuuu says:

    Minecraft video time? MINECRAFT VIDEO TIME!

    How to build a fire

    A day in the life

  22. skotch says:

    minecraft looks like fun, but it has a tendency to freeze every single time i try to hit a tree.

  23. opti says:

    Turn down your view distance (f) when playing on multiplayer servers. It crashes quite often unless you do this. I can go hours without crashing with viewdistance set to normal. Set to far…..maybe 5 minutes max?

    We can always tell when someone new joins the server. They immediately say “Hi everyone!” upon joining and then leave about 30 seconds later. I usually have the “turn down your view distance” message queued up for when they come back =P

  24. Rich says:

    Wasn’t one of the arguments against games being art, the fact that you can ‘win’ games. You can’t ‘win’ Minecraft.

    I have a feeling this reply isn’t going to work right.

    • Rich says:

      Knew it. That was a reply to bill and DrGonzo.
      Happens every time I have to login.

  25. stevehatesyou says:

    DoucheMullet, nobody is responding to your criticisms of Minecraft. They’re responding to your obnoxious, bleating attitude. If you were able to state your opinions without acting like a petulant child, you’d get a much better reception.

  26. Josh04 says:

    As my friend put it: “The North: The Game: Pre-Thatcher Edition”

  27. DirtyMarketer says:

    @Zenicetus

    Notch (minecraft developer) made enough money to form his own studio and have Paypal get suspicious and freeze his assets. [url="http://www.arcengames.com"]This[/url] is a developer who could use your help.

    Also hate all the Bioshock coverage as well.

  28. DirtyMarketer says:

    Blarg! Damn forgot where I was at.

    How ’bout this?

  29. psyk says:

    What’s all this rubbish about high view distance crashing the game? was running around for a good 30 mins with it set to high before I changed it down to normal.

  30. bjohndick says:

    It’s not right to say you need to be fluent in games to play minecraft, but rather that in order to appreciate some of the things other players build, you might need to be fluent in games.

    Not so much in survival multiplayer mode, but in some creative mode servers, you can find a ton of video game inspired creations.
    Just check out the image gallery at world of minecraft.

    I think you can see the point without having to go past the first page.

  31. ANeM says:

    Some guys from the Penny Arcade forums did their own version of rapture in the Alpha..
    Its a little less colourful, and with slightly less features, but the whole thing was done ‘by hand’

  32. _Michael_ says:

    heh really cool seeing our server on RockPaperShotgun! yes this was done in the older “creative” multiplayer mode, just not the same variety of colours and such in SMP yet. We have an SMP server going too, I’m sure we will be making similar sort of themed builds on that as well.
    Dr Kamina if flying around in the video using the world of minecraft client, which is an excellent little tool for anyone who wants to play creative mode.
    Anyone is welcome to come and look around the maps in person on our server “city of rapture” as soon as notch gets his stuff working again, you’ll be able to find us on the server list.
    One of the best things about creative multiplayer is you get to see the brilliant things other people come up with, and it inspires you. So don’t go thinking to yourself “I can’t do that” it just takes some imagination and a little patience.

  33. wex says:

    I want to go to there.