Minecraft 1.0 Review — A Perfect 10?
But who needs NPCs when you could be playing Minecraft with your friends? Minecraft’s multiplayer allows you to host or join servers, where you can participate in the creation of — or just visit as a tourist — massive projects like train stations, sky scrapers, the USS Enterprise… While griefing could present itself as an issue — some kids just love to kick over people’s sand castles — the spirit of collaboration and sharing adds a dimension to Minecraft that few other games can capture.
Presentation-wise, Minecraft seems to herald from the 1990s. The low resolution textures and blocky designs are a stylistic choice — however, this fact doesn’t get Minecraft off the hook. If I set out to design something hideous and succeed, I shouldn’t be applauded. That said, Minecraft doesn’t look hideous. The lighting effects are well-done, and for the most part, the blocky designs work. However, there is definitely room for improvement — some of the blocky models just don’t work, like the Villagers and their bizarre noses, and textures can lack visual clarity.
The game does present an option to install texture packs, but doesn’t direct the player to a website to download any. I don’t understand why high and low-resolution texture options were not included, or at least user-made texture packs, some of which are of exceptional quality.
Minecraft’s musical score is surprisingly good, if not a little jarring. It seems to ebb and flow, stop and then start up again later, such that I often found myself removing my headset, wondering where in my house the music was coming from, failing to realize it was the game. Ambient music should immerse the player into the world, not yank him out, and while I suspect this is a personal thing, it was an issue for me, albeit a small one.
Now that it’s become a cultural phenomenon, Minecraft is something many people who haven’t played the game scoff at and deride. I was a skeptic myself; my first experience with the game soured me to it, but over the years, as I saw the majestic creations Minecraft made possible, I grew to respect the game. Given its low price, I encourage everyone to at least give the game a try. Rekindle that spark of imagination you had as a little boy or girl playing with Legos; you can spend hours a day in Minecraft’s blocky world, and ultimately, whatever you create, you’ll feel a sense of pride and accomplishment that no number of FPS headshots or RPG level-ups can bring.
- A true sandbox experience with complete freedom of choice
- Infinite worlds to explore
- As complex as you want it to be
- The freedom to create just about anything you can imagine
- Mutliplayer collaboration can lead to impressive projects
- Lackluster visuals
- Lack of proper instruction or direction for new players
- Dull combat
- Limited weapon options
Final Score: 85/100