Minecraft for XBLA gets a release date!

May 9, 2012 Minecraft is slated to hit the XBLA for 1600 Microsoft points. The game features the same great building fun and a four player co-op. More news soon.


Notch wins Special Award From the BAFTA!

Image taken from BAFTA.org

Tonight Notch was the recipient of a Special Award from the BAFTA for outstanding contributions to his field. The award is given when BAFTA feels that recognition was not duly given.

Markus Persson better know as “Notch” was the creator of Minecraft a game that not only launched the career of Persson. After the games initial success in alpha, Persson helped to form Mojang. There are currently three games in active development from Mojang studios. Minecraft, Cobalt, and Scrolls.

Minecraft has sold over 5 million unites, an unheard of feat in the gaming world. The success of Minecraft has not been limited to the game itself, its iconic square blocks can be found on shirts, note pads, wrapping paper, and soon Lego building bricks.

Great work Mojang, keep up the good work!

Q&A with Notch

This morning Notch had an interview with a rep. from the The British Academy of Film and Television Arts to have a Q&A session and members of the community in preparation for the big day tomorrow when Notch will be receiving a special award. The interview was done over twitter #notchQA, below is a transposed copy that’s a bit easier to read.

BAFTA – So first things first, how are you feeling about accepting your BAFTA Game special award tomorrow?

Notch – I’m feeling pretty good about it. Picking up the tux later today (black tie event!), and nervous about the speech.

BAFTA – Where did the name “Notch” come from?

Notch – I used to have a (secret) horrible nickname and needed a better one. Wrote a list of several, chose Notch.

BAFTA – What inspired the creation of minecraft? How did u get the idea for such an amazing game?

Notch – Single player Dwarf Fortress plus Infiniminer art style. Supposed to be short project, hah.

BAFTA – Did you expect this much success from minecraft?

Notch – No, I did not. I’m constantly amazed and humbled by how popular the game got! Thanks for playing! 😀

BAFTA – If it wasn’t for the Youtube community do you think Minecraft would be as well known / as popular?

Notch – Probably not, Youtube is a massive reason it got big. I should’ve paid attention to it earlier on!

BAFTA – Do you have a personal motto towards life or work?

Notch – Last year I decided to live my life in whatever way makes for the best story. Things are more fun that way.

BAFTA – Through playing Minecraft, what specific skills do you think can be transferred to the real world?

Notch – The redstone stuff can teach you some useful low level programming things. Other than that.. not much.

BAFTA – What was the hardest feature to code into Minecraft?

Notch – “Infinite” terrain generating the same way on the fly from any direction. It was also very fun to write!

BAFTA – Would you consider bringing Minecraft to PS Vita /3DS for gamers playing on the go?

Notch – Due to (really good) business reasons, we can’t. But it’s available on mobile phones!

BAFTA – Will the giant ever make an appearance in Minecraft maybe a retexture and re-AI?

Notch – Oh yeah, that thing!! Hopefully, but that’s up to Jeb to decide now. It looks fun looming in the distance.

BAFTA – How does it feel to step away from the game you developed & let others code it?

Notch – It was scary at first, but Jeb is exactly what the game needs now, so I’m relaxed about it.

BAFTA – Will there be an APRIL FOOLS coming from Mojang this year?

Notch – Yes, we will be tricking everyone that jens and mollstam get married, and it will be funny.

BAFTA – What indy game are you most looking forward to at the moment?

Notch – Fez, Proteus, the double fine one, Wasteland 2, Spy Party, Monaco.. piles more that I forgot now

BAFTA – Did you play with a lot of Lego as a child?

Notch – Yes, I used to drive my parents insane with the sound of clawing through my lego drawer. So much fun

BAFTA – Which developers does Notch look up to the most?

Notch – Valve, of course. Blizzard. John Carmack, John Romero, Sid Meyer, David Braben, Ken SilvRUNNING OUT OF SPACE

BAFTA – What would be your key piece of advice to youngsters interested in becoming indie game designers?

Notch – Don’t try to replicate what others have done. Don’t listen to advice. Follow your gut. (Don’t take a loan)

Notch will receive his Special Award tomorrow night at 9pm at the British Academy Video Games Award Show.

Minecraft: Pocket Edition update


Daniel Kaplan announced via twitter this morning the release of a new update to     Minecraft : Pocket Edition. Version 0.2.1 boast changes to the control and flying systems. Below are the official release notes from Mojang site.

  • New controller option – Split Touch Controls. This is option may be more suitable for those with bigger screens (hello tablets!). You got a cross hair and the right half of the screen lets you rotate the camera. Touch to place block, hold down to remove blocks. Just like you did before 🙂
  • Flying is changed; ascend/descend by sliding from the center button to the up/down button
  • Pigs are added to Survival Mode
  • Bug fixes

Mojang has also stated that the majority of the next update will involve MATTIS     (Minecraft Advanced Touch Technology Interface System) No specific details about MATTIS have been released yet but, the Mojang team hints that more information will be coming soon.

Minecraft 1.2: The Guide pt.2 Villagers

Sweeping changes have been made to villagers in patch 1.2. They have not yet reached their original design but, the new changes have created a much more organic interaction.

The villagers AI have undergone a substantial upgrade. Villagers will now interact with each other as well as interact with some passive mobs.

Villagers will now search out homes within the village and will go inside and seek shelter from the rain or during night.V They have also gained some survival technique and will flee from zombies seeking shelter in the village structures. Zombies will continue to pursue villagers and if the game is set to hard mode they will break down wooden doors and kill all the villagers inside.

Zombie Chase

The most important addition to villagers is their ability to mate. The mating of villagers is the only way to spawn an iron golem in survival mode. Villagers will mate without any direct interaction with the player but do require certain criteria to be met first.

Mating Villagers

For villagers to mate there must be available houses in the village. A house is defined as a wooden door that has an inside and access to the outside. Only wooden doors count toward mating villagers. Iron doors and trap doors will not promote villager mating.

The inside of a house is determined by whether or not the door is within five blocks of a roof. For a roof to be valid it top must be exposed to the outside and its bottom must be part of an enclose structure.

Villagers mate in a near 1/3 ratio (.35 is the exact number) meaning that for every three doors there can be one villager.

Because doors are used to indicate a house it is possible to create efficient structures with multiple doors to promote faster mating. Buildings like this are unsightly but can be used if the player is only interested in spawning a golem.

Village Spawner

Weekly review

Notch and the Mojang team wins Special Award from BAFTA for excellence in the field of video games.

Notch spends the greater half of the week trying to decide to wear his trademark hat to the event. (He did, but took it off when receiving award.)

Minecraft: Pocket Edition releases newest patch featuring new improved control features for tablets.

Mojang hints at new interface system for Pocket Edition called MATTIS (Minecraft Advance Touch Technology Interface System) but, have not yet given any details about it.

Jens spends his week in Vegas on vacation.

Mojang releases a slew of new avatar items for Xbox360 players as they wait for Minecraft to be released on the console.


Weekly wrap up 10 March 2012

Notch, Jens, and development team head to the states for the GDC.

Notch shares his personal insights on piracy. In short, open communication, trust and, keeping your promises turns pirates into customers.

Notch hints that there is a crafting recipe the community has missed but, insist players stop looking for it because they will be disappointed. Go to bed!

Mojang and Bethesba trademark dispute over the upcoming Mojang Game “Scrolls” is settled. Bethesba owns the trademark “Scrolls” but, Mojang will be allowed to use it.

Notch gives fireside chat and answers a few questions.