It was a long time coming, but Minecraft, the popular indie sandbox game by the Mojang team finally hit the Xbox 360 last month.
Minecraft was originally released in May 2009; meaning it’s had way over two years to be perfected and it does not disappoint. The Xbox 360 version feels like Minecraft, unlike the mobile version of the game which was released on iOS and Android, and offers the full package of the game, how it was meant to be played.
For those of you who have been living under a rock, Minecraft is a popular Indie Sandbox game that allows you to completely alter the randomised world that you are brought into. Emphasis is based around gathering materials to craft things and although the surrounding world is beautiful, the real beauty and adventure starts when you begin to mine beneath the ground, as you are introduced to caverns, dungeons, monsters, lava and the majority of the rare items of the game. Minecraft is a game where you can construct whatever you want and it is an endlessly fun way to spend your time.
The Xbox 360 installment was released on the 9th of may and offers a lot for the 1600 Microsoft points that you are spending on it. It is mostly the same as the PC installment, but the Xbox 360 Edition is slightly limited. The game is numerous updates behind the PC version, meaning that if you are wanting to use features like Potion Crafting or fight Enemies like Endermen then you might have to wait a while since they are planning to release updates in the future. The game is also limited in the sense that the gameworld size is only 1024 by 1024 blocks instead of the “endless” amount of blocks that the PC version offers.
However, don’t let the limitations of the Xbox 360 Edition deter you from spending your hard earned cash on this game, since the Xbox 360 version offers a lot of features specifically for the console. For example there is a new crafting system design which makes crafting items a whole lot easier. Actually having the recipes in front of you means you can save time and stop all that guess work or looking online that you might have had to do for the PC version. The control interface is also different and the game feels as if it was made for the Xbox 360, using the trigger controls mines blocks and places blocks. It feels like they really got that right when designing the game and what controls to use. If you are having trouble using a mouse and keyboard then maybe the Xbox 360 Edition is for you since it makes playing and enjoying minecraft easier than ever.
There is also the ability to play with friends over Xbox Live. You can have up to eight players in your world at one time whilst you hurl abuse at them over the microphone and scream as you all get blown to smithereens by the notorious Creepers.
Xbox 360 Edition also offers Split-Screen Multiplayer, allowing you to have have up to four people playing minecraft on one television at the same time. However, this feature only works with HDTVs and caused a lot of fuss when the game was released.
Do you remember your first time playing Minecraft on the PC? Not a clue what to do, where to go or what to make, relying on the Internet to find crafting recipes and tips. Despite how useful the Minecraft community is, Mojang and 4J Studios have tried to help newcomers out by adding a tutorial option to the Xbox 360 Edition and also helpful hints and tips that can make playing the game for the first time far less daunting, which means you can spend a lot less time being killed by those pesky Skeletons!
A lot of interesting things are in wait for Minecraft: Xbox 360 Edition. The game promises support for Microsoft’s Kinect and also plans to have Cross-platform playability with the PC version of the game, which means that there could be a lot of interesting things heading your way if you have been wise enough to buy this game.
Despite all the praise given and how popular the game has been, it still offers a few bugs from time to time and also lacks any real objective which was promised by the Mojang team a while ago. Players who already have the PC version may be put off from buying this Edition, as it is effectively an older version of the game which can be played with a controller. However the negatives need to be pushed aside as there is a lot of content for the price, and with the promised future updates the game can only grow.
The fantastic game that is Minecraft has successfully made the transition to the home console. Minecraft: Xbox 360 Edition is a fantastic game that really does offer a lot for your money, even at the games steep price. There are a few bugs and problems with the game, but they will all be fixed, and new content added, with future updates. If you have never played Minecraft, you would be bonkers to pass on this game. For those who play the PC version, you need only ask yourself one question – “How much Minecraft can I fit in my life?”.