Most of the time when a game designer makes a new version of a game, they try to expand it and make it more complex. Not so with the Minicraft game. It’s just what you would expect from it’s name–a simplified version of Minecraft. Whereas Minecraft allows you to see from your character’s perspective, Minicraft employs an overhead view like old Nintendo games, so you see more of the map and watch your character move around. But a quick search for Minicraft shows that you have multiple options for getting started playing this game, so which version of Minicraft should you play?
The original Minicraft game was created by the Minecraft creator, Markus Persson, known as Notch. It’s a simple 2D game with the same basic premise as Minecraft, except the end goal of Minicraft is to defeat the Air Wizard. Minicraft by Notch is a quick play that can be downloaded to play on your PC.
Minicraft Plus is a popular game mod developed independently from Notch. There are many mods for this game, but Minicraft Plus is probably the most expansive mod. It adds dozens of new tools and items to the game, as well as bigger worlds, and new systems (such as day and night). If you’re looking for a more well-developed game that you can immerse yourself in, you can download Minicraft Plus for your computer.
The downside of Minicraft Plus is that it doesn’t have a save system. Because the game is designed to be a simple and quick play, that may not be a big deal. But if that’s an important feature to you, you can instead try another mod called Minicraft Delux. Minicraft Delux is made by yet another independent developer, and it adds that save feature to the menu so you can go back to your game later.
Minicraft can also be played online because the game was remade in Flash. If you don’t want to download a game and would rather just have something to do for breaks in between work or homework on your desktop or laptop, Flash Minicraft is a perfect diversion that doesn’t require you to get too involved.
You may have noticed that this game can have infinite variations depending on which developers picked up the source code and tweaked it. For those of you with a bit of programming knowledge, you can develop your own Minicraft mods by clicking the Source code link at Ludum Dare. This allows you to add different tools, inventory, and features to the original game. That means you can customize Minicraft to make it yours.
Notch released the source code to the public and did not license it. So you are free to do what you want with the code as long as you call your resulting games something other than Minicraft. Specifically which programming language do you need to know in order to add mods to Minicraft? The answer is Java, one of the most popular languages in the world of coding. Learning to code mods for Minicraft can help you improve your Java skills, giving you practice in creating many other programs.
If you don’t know Java yet, don’t fret. You can start learning by playing a game! Once you’ve got it down, just use a Java compiler like the ones available on Github to write your programs. Whether you choose to make your own version of Minicraft or play one of the many different mods available, you are carrying on the hopes of Minicraft creator, Notch, to encourage more people to get into coding.