DIY: Minecraft Adding World Generator Customization

New home ideal for first-time buyer

At what price progress? We level mountains and fill chasms to make journeys easier, drag down islands floating in the sky because they look weird, and fence off the boundaries of the world because we feel uncomfortable in places where geometry, geography, and physics break down. Life becomes easier but less interesting, and we all suffer for it. Keep Mineland weird.

Having ironed out some of the oddities of Minecraft‘s world generator over the years, Mojang is bringing them back in a way. Version 1.8 will expose a few of the generator’s inner workings, with sliders and buttons that’ll let players fiddle with such cryptic settings as “coordinate scale” and “biome scale offset.” Sure, you could simply use it to toss in a few more caverns, or you could go all out and re-enact Waterworld.

While sliders with baffling names are always exciting to tweak, inspiring feelings that I’m a super wizard class hacker surfing deep inside a code barrel, Mojang are also offering a simpler way to play somewhere fun. It’s whipped together presets with exciting names like Drought, Caves of Chaos, Mountain Madness, and, oh my, Water World. Update 1.8’s still in the works, with no firm launch date yet.

Tales of strange worlds are what I always found most interesting in Minecraft, so I’m quite keen to hear what comes of this. Why, I may even give in and finally buy it myself. Yes, I know.


  1. Wowbagger says:

    The heathen doesn’t own a copy?! Burn her on a fire made of redstone and chickens!

    • bill says:

      I don’t own it either. It never goes on sale. It is never in bundles. I have been trained to never buy games at full price.

      • Emohawk says:

        Minecraft is always on sale. The game is easily worth that of a newly released triple A game! When you understand that – £20 or less is a bargain..

        • The Random One says:

          I tried it when I got a free week as part of a bundle. I speak for myself, but for me it is worth exactly zero games, AAA or otherwise. It’s a clunky 3D modeling tool you can die in.

  2. Tiberius says:

    I’ve spent so much time simply jumping into new worlds hoping to find some fun geometry to play in. Glad I won’t have to do that anymore :)

  3. Kefren says:

    I used to really enjoy Minecraft, then one day after a break from it I played again and found some kind of hunger system in place. From the moment I spawned my health was going down, and instead of having fun exploring and building I would run around a bit then take a bit of damage in an attack and die; or would just reach somewhere interesting where I might build a base, fall a block too far, and die. It seemed grindy and unfun, nothing like the experience I used to have, and I haven’t played since that evening.

    • Niko says:

      You can just play creative if you like only exploring and building.

      • Kefren says:

        The problem is, I like having some monsters to make it more exciting (as a later poster says). In the past my health only went down if I was injured, then I would use food to heal. The hunger thing is just a chore for me, btu at the same time I don’t want to turn off monsters. Just the always-diminishing health!

        • Niko says:

          It’s not always-diminishing actually, if diminishes if you run and jump a lot. Riding a horse doesn’t lower your hunger, and there are a lot of different ways to get food now. If you have a sword with flame enchantment, you can even insta-bacon pigs!

        • P.Funk says:

          Wouldn’t be surprised if there’s a mod to remove that.

    • InternetBatman says:

      I too never liked the addition of the hunger system. The game has grown more defined over time, but I don’t necessarily like everything it’s grown into.

    • misterT0AST says:

      I wish there was a way to turn hunger on or off.

      The hunger system made exploring much easier because of the regenerating health, but in adventure maps and when you’re just building stuff it’s just a needless chore.

      I’d also love a mode where placing a block didn’t take 1/10 of the time of digging it up. It takes forever to dig and building is super fast, whenever I want to just smoothen up a surface it takes a whole Minecraft day.

      And although it would need to rebalance the whole game, durability is also just a boring chore. They even encourage going around with half broken items now that you can repair items, the inventory is another annoying limitation that should be somehow rethought too. Maybe your whole inventory should be the action bar, and it should be bigger, with more items that stack, I don’t know,I’m just tired of opening/closing a menu every 60 seconds or less.

      You can’t keep digging because your items break, you can’t keep fighting because there is no 100% dodge or block, you can’t keep building because of the hunger bar, any fucking thing you’re doing you have to interrupt every minute, it’s like having the phone ring every minute and someone telling you should be doing something else. Jesus Christ I don’t WANT to build a farm, I’m building a huge penis out of Gold on this mountain, I’m busy goddamnit,

      • wilynumber13 says:

        Creative Mode solves LITERALLY every complaint you just mentioned. Literally every single one.

        • misterT0AST says:

          The differences between Creative Mode and Survival Mode are deeper than that, come on now!
          There is no combat, there is no health, there is no need to build roads, bridges, stairways, ladders, there is no reason to build tools, no joy in finding new tools, no reason to pick up a single item, no difficulty in climbing a mountain or exploring a hole, it’s almost as much of a game as MS paint.

          I like exploration, I just don’t like to go to the same place again and again. I like crafting items, I just don’t like to craft them again and again.

          • evileeyore says:

            You do realize there are mods that solve your problems.

            There is also Cheat Mode. Just turn it on and spawn the items you “don’t want to have to recraft” when they break.

    • Chuckleluck says:

      Personally I really enjoy the hunger system. It makes survival more survival-y, more than just building a house. I really enjoy the way you heal now, before I’d always have 9 hearts because I didn’t want to eat a WHOLE PORKCHOP just to heal one heart. But to each their own, I suppose.

    • Yglorba says:

      Unless you’re on the hardest difficulty, hunger won’t kill you. Specifically: On easy difficulty, the player’s health stops dropping at five hearts, on normal it stops at half a heart. On peaceful your health won’t drop at all. And when you do eat, your health will rapidly regenerate back to full.

      So just play on easy and you’ll be fine; you’ll have all the features of regular play (not Creative mode), but won’t starve to death.

      • Kefren says:

        Ah, I didn’t realise that, thanks. However, I assume it also makes the monsters weaker, which isn’t a change I want to make – I’m happy with the monsters. All I want is the option to remove the hunger effect, since that just takes a chunk of the fun away for me. I can see that other people like it, hence having an option would be great, so I can play Minecraft as I did in the beginning – fun without the grind.

    • oyog says:

      I thought that too, when I started playing again, along with not having the resources to build a bed. Then I realized that as soon as I had access to grain I’m just drowning in bread. I just take stacks of it everywhere.

      I still miss the Biome Terrain Mod, though.

    • DantronLesotho says:

      I am totally with you on the hunger mechanic. I too found it annoying to try and keep that up, although I didn’t realize that you can’t die from hunger in the game. I never let it get low enough to find out.

      They also changed how animals spawn, in that they don’t spawn forever. Because of that, you’re forced to make a farm where the animals have to be bred to continually get food or other animal resources. I liked my animal grinder towers, goddammit! That was part of the fun!

    • Contrafibularity says:

      I’m not going to tell you you’re playing the game wrong, but it does sound like you’ve simply given up too easily or too early.

      Fall damage should never constitute a problem in a game where you can reshape the entire world; this is why you always carry both a pickaxe (even just a wooden one in the very early stages) and a stack of dirt blocks. It’s a (modest) challenge. It’s in fact much more fun in this regard than the hunger system, but the latter should simply be approached like a challenge of inventory and resource management. It’s quite possible to almost completely ignore hunger; food is plentiful enough that you could even opt to roleplay as entirely vegetarian (for whatever reason), you just have to plan ahead a bit more if you’re (say) heading deep into mines. I disliked the addition of hunger at first, too, but after a few hours it made much more sense.

      Of course, as with anything in Minecraft, you can just find a server where it’s modded or disabled, and the same goes for fall damage.

  4. Niko says:

    I have one word: FINALLY. I mean, how many years it’s been since the end of indev and world presets?..

  5. Smashbox says:

    You’re insane for not owning this game. You’re probably aware, but it’s Very Good.

  6. geldonyetich says:

    “Cryptic settings” is right. Needs a preview pane or something.

    I’d probably reverse the order of the customization: page 3 currently has the stuff I’d be interested in tweaking the most. For example, I might want more villages but no mineshafts.

    • Andy_Panthro says:

      I was also disappointed in a lack of sliders for the amount of things like villages and other stuff.

      I’d love to try a world which was filled with villages, and to try and turn it into a big conurbation.

  7. Cockie says:

    Glad to know I’m not the only one who hasn’t yet bought Minecraft (I intend to rectify that this summer btw so don’t lynch me yet)

  8. derbefrier says:

    ahhh minecraft. PLayed the crap out of it for a while but eventually got bored of it. I will never forget watching my buddy build a castle made of black wool then making the mistake of thinking lava would make it look even cooler. Half of it burned to the ground before he was able to put it out and he never logged in again. this was back when fires spread like crazy it was horrible, yet halarious at the same time. I also enjoyed build traps and obstacle course for friends to try and navigate while i sat behind a wall and tried to kill them with numerous deadly contraptions.

  9. OscarWilde1854 says:

    Those sand mountains at 2:05 scare the crap out of me as an avid “tunneler”.

    Such frustration… Much collapse…

  10. John Connor says:

    Stopped playing last year because of a lack of new content, and this is all they’ve come up with?

    An expansion pack with a ton of new stuff wouldn’t hurt.

  11. oyog says:

    So I started playing Minecraft again about a month ago. (It’s the perfect game to play while listening to Welcome To Nightvale.) Oh, man I miss Biome Terrain Mod. I still have all the config files saved on my external HDD. I know I can use them again if I dig deep into the Minecraft forums and figure out how to revert to previous versions but damn that’s a lot of time I don’t really have. Also Risugami’s mods. Those were some great mods.

    *Wipes away a tear.*

    • The Colonel says:

      Now a straightforward option in the launcher. I like to play at the last version with which the water shader mod is compatible. That mod is the only one I care about. It makes me so happy. Also BDcraft pack

      link to

  12. BlocParty says:

    Fun fact – You don’t need a special setting for Waterworld, there’s a special seed you can enter that’s broken and generates a world entirely of water. Was fun to play.

  13. whorhay says:

    I really hope there is an easy way to reduce the number of ravines. The first ravine I found was awesome, then it turned out I couldn’t tunnel for more than five minutes without running into more of them. Now if I encounter a ravine while mining for resources I just build a little covered walk way through it and continue on.

  14. Contrafibularity says:

    Why, I may even give in and finally buy it myself. Yes, I know.

    Do you? Do you really?

    No seriously play this game it’s good. I recommend starting out with singleplayer for a bit, like a few hours as a tutorial, then multiplayer. You owe it to yourself.