Living in the Now!

Learning to enjoy my life more!

The Wonderful World of Minecraft

Minecraft, love it? Loath it? Or never heard of it! What ever your feelings about it, Minecraft is becoming a global phenomenon. This unusual game has come from a one man developer, before the game even hit beta had sold over a million copies allowing this one man development team to grow. The company goes by the name Mojang and the game just keeps going from strength to strength. If you wish to know more about Mojang, Minecraft and the man who started it then check out this documentary.

I found this game in November and have had a hesitant start, not knowing exactly what I had to do or exactly how to do anything. But after looking on YouTube and the Minecraft Wiki I started to figure stuff out and started building. After a little while I found a multiplayer server and joined in the fun, and to begin with my buildings were basic but ambitious but as time went by the quality of my building and ability to build increased significantly.

It’s a wonderful game but personally I don’t see it as a game. A game has a goal, Minecraft has no set goals! This is more like a design tool or a sandbox environment but its fun and unlike a tool you have to find your raw materials and refine them, the same goes for tools (wiki guide for crafting).

When I first joined the multiplayer server I was a little intimidated as there is a load of tall towers around the spawn and the rules written on little sign posts state that stealing is prohibited and so is “greifing” (the act of messing with or destroying another players creation). So I went exploring the surrounding area looking at other peoples creations until I found a giant picture of a head that turned out to be Bryan Lunduke.

I wandered around a little more till I realized I was unable to see any other players creation in any direction. Upon further investigation I found a hole in the ground and thought “this is a good starting point!” so I dug down creating a stair case that descended all the way to bedrock (the lowest possible level a player can reach). After making myself comfortable in my little hole in the ground I started to feel as though I needed to hide my little base. So I built a tower covering the hole covered the outside with glass and left a block gap all the way around the inside so that I could place water at the top and it would flow down the inside of the glass without spilling inside the tower. I also hid the entrance to my mine in the water so that I knew it was there but no one else would be able to find it.

But as soon as I had finished this I wanted to make something more ambitious so I started work on a pyramid, it is a part of my tower but quite a bit larger than it. took me a week to create a pyramid out of cobble stone and then cover it with sand (as sand wont be placed without support). That creation lead to others and before  I knew it I’d taken over a little corner of the map.

As time goes by this game get’s stronger and stronger, don’t let the simple graphics fool you this is a game with more depth than almost anything else on the market. It is simple in its approach but what can be achieved in this game can at times be awe inspiring. I will include a few YouTube video’s of some creations that have just taken my imagination and impress me.

Space creation’s in mine craft

Tetris music

Star Trek (there are newer video’s since this one where the ship is more complete but the latest one he waffles for a bit at the beginning, but check it out your self)

16 Bit ALU in Minecraft (there are more since this video where he has completed the CPU)


Projects I want to work on

The past few days I’ve come up with a few ideas that I want to do, but atm its a little impossible as I have two assignments to finish and two exams to study for. First one is a texture pack for Minecraft, replacing all the tools with knives, forks, spoons etc. The next project is making a film in Minecraft using the audio from “army of darkness”.

tower bridge and art

Village tower

Because of all the studying I have to do I am keeping these ideas for the summer holidays. I also want to go to the gym once a day throughout the summer break and brush up on Java and databases before the new term. Also if I have time I want to learn more about the level editor “Hammer”. I think its good to have a goal for the summer holidays, stops me wasting my time and keeps away boredom.

On top of this me and my wife Vicky are going to celebrate our 30th Birthday with a BBQ. I’m so lucky to have such a wonderful best friend.

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More projects

Left 4 Dead army base map
Based in a British army camp you have to work your way through a town to get there, then work your way through the base to steal a tank. That’s just a very basic out line for the campaign, I will add much more but the basic idea is there.

Apple logo with death star
Basically taking the apple logo and turning it into a Apple shaped death star from the film Star Wars: A New Hope, Return of the Jedi & The Empire Strike Back.

Just an idea I had while on my idea throne (don’t ask, you don’t want to know!) Thought it was a fun idea, struggling with a caption for it, iDeathstar seems a little obvious for my taste. Perhaps I will have a caption competition.

Desktop wallpaper
2880 x 900 desktop wall paper of fallout 3 brotherhood of steel power armour like the one on the games cover, maybe adding some interesting scenes around it. I love making desktop wallpapers and my own machine has a dual monitor setup so the width is huge so I like to span a scene across both.

Other news
I have broken my racing wheel that I use on my pc to play race simulations, not very happy about it as its my favorite way to relax. So for the moment I’m stuck in the paddock without a brake pedal, it’s even more annoying as I’ve only just got rFactor, Gand Prix Legends and GT-R so I can’t even try them out.

Any way, drive safe
Neil Griffiths

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Where does it all go?

It seems like I have all the time in the world each morning when I get up but by the time I’ve gotten everything done that needs to be done there hardly seems time to do the things I want to do. This is kind of my way of saying that there’s never enough time in a day, I have so many different things on the go at the moment that I never  to do next. So with this in mind I will say the ETA for me getting this blog anywhere near where I want it to be will hopefully be between 2 to 4 weeks. There will be days where a lot of things will change and days where nothing seems to change but please be assured that I am working on it.

No Mercy level from Left 4 Dead

No Mercy level from Left 4 Dead

Also I feel I must add that even though I mention Level design in the things I do it is not something I do a lot, and I haven’t done a lot! I have made 4 or 5 levels in Unreal Ed & Hammer and I do have 3 levels I want to do some work on.

One was inspired by Left 4 Dead level by for Counter Strike: Source, very industrial lots of over look points two main buildings and 3 courtyards one large courtyard for a meeting point. Another one is a port of the Two Towers map from the game Combat Arms Europe to Counter Strike: Source & Left 4 Dead. The last one is a port of the Wave rider level from Combat Arms Europe and will be recreated in Counter Strike: Source and adapted to Left 4 Dead.

Wave Rider and Two Towers along with a few other maps I haven’t thought of yet will be used to crate a full campaign for Left 4 Dead or Left 4 Dead 2 if I get a copy of L4D2 by the time I start working on them.

So I hope this clarifies things a little and also helps me focus on my tasks with regards to what I’m doing with The Little Web Factory.

Stays safe, Neil Griffiths

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