Minecraft v0.13.0 for Android entered beta earlier this month. Gamers downloaded the game. They tested it. They played with the new Redstone components. They dealt with bunnies. They opened and closed new types of wooden doors. Everything checked out, so now the latest version has gone stable. Non-beta testers are free to download the update straight from Google Play.
Minecraft Pocket Edition updates are often filled with minute changes that you have to be familiar with the game to understand. Version 0.12.1's changelog includes a number of these tweaks. For example, there's "Ocelots! Try taming one with a fish" and "Golems. We recommend you approach with caution." Also, "Sneaking and sprinting! Express yourself through movement!"
Last month the beta version of Minecraft for Android added a ton of new features, most notably a port of the player skin feature that's become such a popular part of the original Minecraft game. Just a couple of weeks later Mojang has instituted the changes in the public version of Minecraft: Pocket Edition. Go check it out on the Play Store now if you've already purchased the game, or buy it for $7.
Skins are a big deal. Not only do they allow the greatest amount of player customization after, well, making stuff in Minecraft itself, they also represent the game's first post-purchase revenue stream.
Are you still playing the mobile version of Minecraft? Good, because just like the original PC version, developer Mojang is still adding new features. The beta version of the .11 release is now available via the Play Store/Google+ community method. (Previously it wasn't available to the public.) It has more additions and improvements than you can shake a pickaxe at, including some features that have been hotly anticipated by the large player community. Here's a breakdown of all the new stuff from the Google+ news post:
- Added boats rideable by 2 mobs!
- New World edit screen
+ Rename worlds
+ Change gamemode
+ Lock/unlock day cycle
+ Make old worlds infinite
There are very specific applications and implementations that make sense on Google's smartwatch platform. Minecraft isn't one of them. Even so, the first batch of Android Wear devices have at least as much processing power and memory as some of the older or cheaper smartphones, so it was only a matter of time before someone tried something like this. That someone is YouTube user and Galaxy Gear owner Corbin Davenport.
Corbin says that he didn't do anything special to get Minecraft: Pocket Edition running on his Gear Live, just manually installed it (I'm assuming he used the standard ADB commands). Since the Gear Live uses a Snapdragon 400 processor running at 1.2Ghz, with half a gigabyte of RAM and 4GB of storage, it's got more than enough oomph to play the ubiquitous building game, though I'm betting that it's only working in local mode.
It's estimated that the build-your-own-adventure sleeper hit Minecraft has sold over 50 million copies on various gaming platforms, including more than 5 million of the Pocket Edition on Android. How much would you say that Mojang, the Swedish developer co-founded by Markus "Notch" Persson, is worth? If a recent report from the Wall Street Journal is to be believed, Mojang and its properties are being acquired for a staggering two billion dollars by Microsoft.
Minecraft creation and screenshot by AppleNova forum member Brad
Microsoft's interest in the company is clear: Minecraft has sold 12 million copies on the Xbox 360 alone, and it has slowly become a cultural phenomenon.
I must confess to a near-total ignorance in all things Minecraft. My basic understanding is that you punch trees, dig, run from exploding zombies, and out of that somehow comes a full-scale digital model of the starship Enterprise or the entire country of Denmark. But I do know that "crafting" is a big part of all that, and in order to effectively craft, you need to know what to start with and what tools to use. Now you can get all that information in an Android Wear app.
Some cynical, jaded observers (who are and shall remain Eric) think that putting together a Wear app like this is stupid.
Early last month Mojang bumped the Minecraft Pocket Edition beta up to version 0.9.0, and the team crammed everything into the release, including the kitchen sink (though you may have to build it yourself). Now that release is going stable. The latest app update brings all of the new content to users who weren't aware of or adventurous enough to journey into the beta.
This release introduces infinite worlds, new environments, and loads of new blocks. There are new enemies to tend with, but the update provides players with another means of staying alive - the option to tame a wolf to serve as their loyal ally.
The upcoming 0.9.0 update for Minecraft Pocket Edition is set to be the game's biggest thus far. There is no shortage of changes, including unlimited worlds, a new culling algorithm, and different falling mechanics for gravel and sand. The game contains over two dozen new blocks, with cocoa and emerald ore being two examples. There are five additional mobs, updated biomes, and so much more. Hit up Mojang's latest blog post to see the full list of changes.
The stable version isn't ready to absorb these goodies just yet, but anxious players can get in on the action by signing up for the beta.