Minecraft [official site] today launched 'The Exploration Update', adding a little more structure to the activity that, well, has been one of the core tenets of this whole 'Minecraft' malarkey since the start. Woodland Mansions with fancy treasure and surly guards! Treasure maps! Great treasures! L-lamas? Llamas!
Here's the score. With update 1.11, cartographers will live in villages to sell you maps in exchange for emeralds. These maps might lead to Ocean Monuments in the dark seas or to the new Woodland Mansions. The new 'Illager' enemies live in these procedurally-generated buildings but what the heck do you care? You're a hero! Roll in, murder them and the imps they summon, then seize their totems of immortality. Adventure!
Other new things include magical Shulker Boxes, which keep their contents even when picked up, and llama friends who can form into convoys.
Here, check it out in this trailer:
This is all for the original Java version of Minecraft on Windows and Mac. Minecraft updates do have the issue that many players don't see them because they're used to playing on older versions with a familiar, comfy set of mods which likely haven't all been updated. Is version 1.8 still the go-to version? I'm a bit behind the times.
The Windows 10/Pocket Edition is getting a big update of its own soon too. Version 1.0, the Ender Update, will introduce, ah, the end. Y'know, the big boss battle against the Ender Dragon. The actual end of the game, which most people won't see because they're too busy building stuff and larking about.
The Ender Update is due in Minecraft's Win 10 edition before the end of this year.