Posts Tagged ‘Mojang’

Minecraft Devs Release Crown And Council Free

“Surprise!” holler the Minecraft mob at Mojang, announcing that they’ve just released a “casual strategy game of geopolitical drama” for free. Crown and Council is now up on Steam, offering streamlined turn-based strategy to build up and crush kingdoms. It’s a nice spot of fun for a Friday afternoon. Here, I’ll explain a bit.

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Stop The Clocks: Cobalt Free On Steam This Weekend

What are you up to on this lazy Saturday, dear reader? Nothing too strenuous, I hope. If you’re playing videogames, I’m sure you’ve already told Alice what you’re playing, but if you’re stuck for inspiration and don’t fancy those FPS freekends, let me point you in the direction of Cobalt [official site]. For those unawares, Cobalt is a stylish side-scrolling platformer that follows the plight of a quick-witted murderbot who deflects bullets and manipulates time for fun. Standard weekend, then. It’s also free to play this weekend on Steam.

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Minecraft: Story Mode Ep 5 Decamps To Sky City

The fifth episode of the Telltale episodic adventure Minecraft: Story Mode [official site] is out now – it was due to be the final episode but Telltale are now going to do an extra three episodes as DLC not covered by the season pass. So a kind of epilogue, I guess? Or maybe a mini adventure? Or maybe we will watch a man patting trees down in order to make a table for a while?

The latter is probably why I am not working at Telltale as a story creator. ANYWAY. Episode 5 has a trailer:

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How Minecraft Got Better Combat

This is The Mechanic, where Alex Wiltshire invites a developer to help him put their game up on blocks and take a wrench to hack out one its features, just to see how it works.

“I feel that combat got quite boring over the long term, it mainly felt like monsters were standing in your way.” For a long time, Minecraft’s combat has been, well, not exactly premium. Clicky clicky clicky. Swords flailing at air, the basic principle behind combat being the player who clicks most wins most.

For its lead developer Jens Bergensten, it was time for change in the form of Minecraft 1.9, the Combat Update, which released on February 29. “The combat system wasn’t very interesting and we simply wanted to give it a little bit more variation,” he tells me. But how could he design something that would be accepted by Minecraft’s huge playerbase, work with Minecraft’s networking system, and be as playable on touchscreens as mouse and keyboard? The answer was…

THE MECHANIC: Timing

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Minecraft Now An Artificial Intelligence Workshop

Minecraft AI

While Minecraft [official site] is no stranger to the classroom, computer scientists are now using Mojang and Microsoft’s famous build ’em up to improve artificial intelligence. For now, it’s in the hands of a small group of researchers/super smart boffin types by way of a private beta, however it’s going open-source come July. Find out more after the drop.

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Ridealong: The Ruin Of Minecraft’s Most Obscene Server

Ridealong is our monthly feature where Brendan travels deep into game worlds to meet, question and journey with the inhabitants that dwell within. This week, he dives into the most notorious and offensive server Minecraft has to offer to meet an archivist who is trying to save as many creations as possible.

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Cubic Violence: Minecraft Combat Update Released

Minecraft [official site] murderers can enjoy a little more vim in their BAM! and a little more pow in their BIF! now version 1.9 of the mega-popular craft ’em up has arrived. It’s nicknamed the ‘Combat Update’ for its focus on overhauling violence, with changes including adding shields and charged attacks so fighting is less about clicking frantically. But it also brings new blocks to build with, new enemies, and delicate wings which let people glide gracefully rather than plummet to their death.

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Bet On Cobalt Lets You Gamble On Bot Matches

Cobalt is a sidescrolling shooter that’s getting a finished release on February 2nd, and between now and then its developers are running Bet On Cobalt. It’s two weeks of non-stop Cobalt matches between teams of bots, around which the Twitch audience can gamble with fake money on who they think will win.

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Microsoft Launching Minecraft: Education Edition

Back in my day, computers in schools were used for serious learning like making Podd explode. New parents, look at me and be glad that your kids may be learning Minecraft instead. The ubiquitous block ’em up has been in schools for a few years now, in part thanks to programs like MinecraftEdu, which combines a custom version of Minecraft with lesson plans and things. Now Microsoft, who already own Minecraft makers Mojang, have bought up MinecraftEdu and announced plans to release a revised and expanded Minecraft: Education Edition.

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Mojang Publishing Cobalt On February 2nd

Mojang have tried to be more than just ‘Those Minecraft Folks’, but their other projects have been troubled. Their second game, card ’em up Scrolls, is on life support, and Cobalt [official site] has been in paid alpha for over four years. We’ll soon finally see the final form of the multiplayer side-on shooter, which is made by Oxeye Game Studio and only published by Mojang, as Mojang have announced it’ll launch on February 2nd. Look at these angry little robots shooting each other:

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Mojang Set Cobalt Release Date Back To Feb 2016

The last time I wrote about Cobalt [official site], it was the other other Mojang title, sitting alongside Minecraft and Scrolls. It remains the only third-party game in the company’s portfolio and has come a long way since I played it four years ago. The 2D robo-battler was due to be released in a few days but a remarkably honest new video shows a boulder of bugs squashing the game’s protagonist and announcing a delay. The game is now due February 2016.

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Civilizationcraft Gets Spiritual “Gods and Kings” Update

civcraft

No matter how many variants of “cool human does awesome thing in Minecraft” [official site] stories I hear about, I’m always blown away by the ingenuity some people have. This time, a team of modders have managed to bring much of Civilization [official site] into Mojang’s burgeoning sandbox. The mod is called Civilizationcraft [official site], and a new update has just added religion to the game.

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Minecraft 1.9 Update Gets Magic Flying Capes

Minecraft [official site] will let you live out your childhood Peter Pan-inspired dreams when it adds magic flying capes to its 1.9 update. Last night, developer Jens Bergensten took to social media to namedrop a new “dramatic feature” for the forthcoming update, before parting with some work-in-progress screens. Nip inside for pics and gifs galore.

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Telltale’s Minecraft: Story Mode Starts October 15th

Minecraft: Story Mode [official site] is, confusingly, not a story mode for Minecraft. It’s a separate episodic series of adventure games from Telltale Games, the merry gang behind The Walking Dead and Tales from the Borderlands and all that. As Adam noted, it’s an adventure in that Telltale style which seems to smoosh together the LEGO Movie and Minecraft YouTuber adventures – and to that I’ll add what I imagine my niece’s dreams must look like after an afternoon of sweeties and Minecraft.

The first of five episodes, named ‘The Order of the Stone’, will be coming on October 15th, Telltale and Mojang announced today. Here, come see that trailer again:

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The Future Of Minecraft’s Biggest Servers

Hypixel’s hub speaks to its sophisticated approach to getting players committed, displaying stats and giving lots of ways of showing off both real and virtual money spending.

Good news, Microsoft! Minecraft is still popular. And that means its big minigame servers are still popular, too. Places like Mineplex, Hypixel and GuildCraft, where rather than the standard survival or creative Minecraft, you play heavily modded multiplayer games. To many Minecraft players, the servers and the games they play on them, from Survival Games to SkyBlock, are Minecraft. Mineplex, at the time I’m writing this on a Friday lunchtime in the UK, has 12,022 players online. That would put it among the top 20 games being played on Steam. Hypixel has 16,449 players online right now.

They’re huge, and Duncan wrote a great intro to the server scene last year, but despite their size, I didn’t really know how they work or what makes them tick. So I chatted to a couple of their creators to find out, and I encountered a surprising world that’s undergoing big change, facing big challenges, and holding big potential.

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Minecraft PC/Mobile Crossplay Means You Can Never Escape From Playing It With Your Kid

If you’re a parent who thought that buying your child a cheap smartphone or tablet would spare your PC from being taken up with endless block-chipping, I’ve got some bad news for you. A new patch introduces crossplay for the Windows 10 version of Minecraft [official site] and the Pocket Edition on iOS and Android – anyone on the same network can play together. Which means that yes, sorry, your time with your PC will once again be spent looking at your kid’s mangled recreations of Ben 10 monsters and vloggers you’ve never heard of. I guess this constitutes both a reason to upgrade to Windows 10 and a reason not to upgrade to it, eh?

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Far Lands: Minecraft’s Almighty 4K Render Distance

Minecraft [official site] with mind-blisteringly distant horizons, rendered to 4,000 blocks, looks like a different game. The world stretches in every direction, full of mystery and possibilities. The puniness of your constructions is laid bare as the enormity of nature seems prepared to swallow them whole. It’s stunning, as you can see in the video below.

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No More Click-Click-Click: Minecraft’s Combat Changes

Minecraft [official site] has added an awful lot over the years, but the fundamentals were mostly settled years ago. Now, Mojang are finally having a crack at improving its combat, and yesterday the developers released a test ‘snapshot’ build from version 1.9, showing their first crack at reworking fisticuffs. They’re kicking it off by introducing an attacking charging system, which means an end to click-click-click-click-click-clicking.

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It’s Always Sunny In Minelandia: Movie Director Announced

Heigh ho, heigh ho.

I only know Rob McElhenney as an actor in It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia, which I only know as ‘that sitcom about nasty people being nasty to each other which a former flatmate really liked’, so the announcement that he’ll be directing the Minecraft [official site] movie is baffling to me. I’ve had a quick scan of his IMDB page and… no, co-creating and starring in a comedy of unpleasantness is by far the biggest thing he’s done. Well then! This might be interesting.

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How Has Microsoft Changed Minecraft?

Stepping into the main hall at Minecon, the huge annual get-together for Minecraft fans all over the world, you wouldn’t know that Microsoft existed – much less that it paid $2.5 billion dollars to acquire Mojang less than a year ago. The only sign of the multinational software giant’s presence is a monochrome rendition of its logo on the shoulders of its staffers. A logo which, coincidentally, is four flat blocks. Most people probably aren’t even aware the company is there at all.

Since the Mojang acquisition, Microsoft has very carefully stayed in the shadows to avoid spooking the game’s tens of millions of enthusiastic players. At this year’s Minecon I spoke to Mojang staff and Minecraft fans to find out how the acquisition has affected one of the world’s most popular games.

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