In December Minecraft creator Markus “Notch” Persson posted on his blog that fellow Mojang developer Jens “Jeb” Bergensten would be taking over as lead developer of the successful sandbox building game, allowing Notch to focus on running the company he created from scratch. It seemed like a no-brainer as the two had been working on Minecraft together for over a year and, as Notch put it, are both “in sync.”
However, since Notch’s departure the game’s development has seemed rather out of sync. First there was the rather rocky release of Minecraft: Pocket Edition for iOS and Android. Originally marketed as Minecraft on your phone, it turns out it was more like something-that-looks-like-Minecraft on your phone. The criticism was severe enough to warrant a reaction from Mojang itself, saying they will re-work the mobile version to represent what many felt it should have been in the first place. Daniel Kaplan, lead developer on the mobile version, even admitted during an interview with Gamasutra that he knew “the controls would suck” on a handheld version.
It gets worse. Last week one of Minecraft’s users posted on their forums about a rather obvious and obviously offensive oversight in one of their “snapshot” builds. One of the users working on their localization managed to sneak in a rather offensive racial slur when selecting the newly implemented Afrikaans language. Normally you would see something like this fixed, patched or blocked immediately, however as the next patch isn’t due until this Thursday, and since it doesn’t make the game itself unplayable, the slur will remain until the next snapshot update. In the link above, Bergensten tried to downplay the significance of the event, calling those responsible “pranksters,” and reminding everyone that it was not an official release patch.
Finally, there are the bugs.
Anyone who has played Minecraft before knows that dealing with bugs and figuring out how to get around them is a cost of doing business. Every time new content is added, however, the cost seems to rise. One popular Minecraft youtuber, Sethbling, posted a slightly humorous video outlining some of the more obvious ones. Some of these bugs may seem small, but considering some of the enormous projects users have worked on, even the smallest bugs can create havoc.
While diehard fans of the game will continue to play, many newer users will have to make the decision to play or just skip the experience all together… or they could just buy the Legos.
Written by and posted on behalf of David Bast(guest contributer)