Minecraft is one of the most popular video games around, with over 112 million monthly active users. The sandbox-style encourages players to unleash their creativity and develop worlds of their own creation.
In March, we saw a couple of interesting new projects being developed, as well as an update about some Marketplace content. Here’s what we had our eyes on in Minecraft last month.
A Scale Model of the Earth
Minecraft Enthusiast PippenFTS has completed a 1:1 scale model of the planet Earth. This type of project would not have been possible a few years ago, since the mods that were needed for this type of undertaking were not available at that time. With the addition of the Cubic Chunks mod, which allows you to alter the 256-cube vertical limit, and the Terra 1-to-1 mod where environmental data from sources like Google Maps and the like are pulled into your map, PippenFTS was able to create the world in its entirety.
This map shows trees, elevation, some climate and other environmental features. The missing puzzle pieces are buildings, highways, infrastructure, parks, museums, and other buildings and created by us humans. This map creator has simply laid down the foundation, and he is requesting any and all Minecraft builders to help have a full detailed map of every city in the world.
Some have already answered the call – there are over six thousand people on the subreddit currently working on the project. These builders are looking for help for their hometown, or showing off their model of the Sydney Opera House.
This is a massive project, and it will take a large community to finish this undertaking. Along with the subreddit, there is also a Discord server and a Patreon community for those who wish to contribute.
The Uncensored Library
Around the world, there are governments who control social media, blogs, and other news sources. Journalists and reports have been imprisoned or killed for writing dissenting opinions against their governments. An organization called Reporters Without Borders, with the help of BlockWorks, have begun a project to bypass the internet censorship in many of these countries around the world, calling it The Uncensored Library.
This initiative first opened its virtual doors on March 12th, which is the World Day against Cyber Censorship. Inside the library, you can find banned articles that are republished in book format. Minecraft is not often blocked in countries like Russia, Vietnam, Saudi Arabia, and others. This allows young people to educate themselves on the current political situation in these countries.
This is a fairly new project, and there are only a small number of journalists who have submitted work to the Uncensored Library at this point. Let’s hope that more resources will be added as time goes on, since this is a step in the right direction for ensuring information access to everyone worldwide.
Free Lessons in Minecraft Marketplace
Many children around the globe may not see the inside of a classroom for a while. It seems as though a number of educational institutions are moving to an online-based education delivery system due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
With this in mind, Minecraft and other creators are offering educational content for free at the moment. Their hope is to assist in “keep[ing] young minds sharp and stimulated”.
The collection can be found here, and includes a variety of subject matter from Science, Mathematics, and History. Students will be able to make their own fractals, tour historic Washington DC, or enter and discover the secrets of the human eye.
People have used Minecraft to come up with some very interesting projects. From TV sets and bedrooms to castles and mansions, whatever you can imagine, you can create in Minecraft. Two such projects in March were the Uncensored Library and the 1:1 planet Earth map.
Minecraft also has support using its own Marketplace, where a person can download content created by others. Due to COVID-19, a selection of educational content is now available for free.
There are many people who are stuck at home, and offering these services and projects in Minecraft could be a great way to pass the time and stay educated. These initiatives are great and give us some hope for the future of the Minecraft community.