GAME NAME: Minecraft: Xbox 360 Edition
DEVELOPER(S): Mojang, 4J Studios
PUBLISHER(S): Microsoft Studios
PLATFORM(S): Xbox 360
GENRE(S): Action & Adventure, Platforming
RELEASE DATE(S): 5/9/12
Minecraft, is, at first glance a very simple and rudimentary game. Your goal is to build things. There is no end-game, there is no objective, there is basically no reason for you to play – and that’s what makes it amazing.
Minecraft is the overnight success of Swedish developer Mojang. Having sold millions of copies and now being available on Android, iOS, PC, Mac, and now Xbox Live Arcade, it’s basically available to everyone. In Minecraft you’re goal is to have fun. You’re dropped into a randomly generated world full of blocky trees, piles of dirt, and pools of water and lava. You’re given no instructions, told nothing, and given only the directions you can gather from your previous experience. You’ll normally start out by punching wood, and then building a table, and then building a house. The rest is up to you.
Minecraft has four different difficulties that all play basically the same and fall into two categories. The first is Peaceful mode. In this mode there are no enemies and your health recharges quickly. The other three modes, Easy, Normal, and Hard, live up to their names. Every night enemies will come out from caves and the darkness to try and kill you. You’ll face exploding creepers, skeletons with bow-and-arrows, and giant spiders looking to destroy you.
The fun in Minecraft comes from the scope of what you can do. You can build absolutely anything, anywhere, if you put the time in. When I started my game at first I dug into the side of a sand dune and built a house for my first night, I then set out and build a sprawling cobblestone and glass house a top of mountain. About an hour later the mountain was gone and my house was floating in the air. By the end of the week I’d had five friends join in at random times, build houses near mine, and I had constructed a town complete with houses, a Jacuzzi, a dog house, a farm, a store, and a public mine. The reason building in Minecraft is so fun is because it isn’t overly simple – all your resources must be mined out of the ground, you must build the tools to get better minerals for making better equipment, and everything must be crafted. This sounds like a horribly boring experience, and it sure does read like that, but it’s not.
Minecraft is the ultimate example of gaming. It’s limited only by your imagination and you’ll find yourself playing it for hours. I could take your time writing more paragraphs as to why you should play it, but that would be wasting more time that you could be using to play Minecraft. With 4 Player Split-Screen Co-Op, 8 Player Xbox Live Co-Op and tons of free updates coming soon, this game is sure to keep you occupied longer than some full retail games. Oh, and the fact that this game broke all XBLA Day-one download records to date doesn’t hurt either.
Seriously, go get this game – or at least play the demo – right this instant.