Minecraft is a first-person fighter/sandbox construction game created by Mojang AB.
Minecraft is a small building game that looks like it will be very boring at first glance. You look, and you see blocks, you see animals and you see people building dirt houses. Without knowing the mechanics, it cannot be understood.
However, once you play, you can suddenly see why people enjoy the game.
Minecraft is portrayed as a building game. You put blocks down and build things, which is reflected in the only easily accessible free version.
Minecraft is NOT simply a block building game. It is a crafting game, a learning game, a gathering game and overall, a survival game.
Minecraft comes with no aim. It simply lets you do what you want, which is why it is such a diverse game. Some use it to create beautiful masterpieces in architecture, while some use it to fight blocky creatures. Some even use it for both, creating entire cities, while fighting off the creatures of the night.
Minecraft has a form of beauty about it, and shows that every time you explore the world. It also doubles the beauty with a second dimension, used for fast travel in the real world. These both show a harsh contrast of design, but are both amazing in their own ways.
Even as you read this, there is likely more being added to Minecraft, as it builds up the gameplay. It is supposedly alpha, and supposedly worth £8-£9. I however do not believe that. A simple start-up of a Minecraft world outweighs even major commercial game's quality.
When you hit that buy button, you are paying for a final release, that will continue to grow. You are not paying for an alpha. To call it alpha is simply insulting.
Not many games can have original gameplay, art style and good community interaction. But this game, despite originally being a Infiniminer clone, pulls it off in ways that words simply cannot describe. It has such a diverse genre, it cannot be summed up in one sentence.
That alone is why Minecraft is such a brilliant game, and why it will be popular, years after it is finished completely.
I'd rate this as OVER 9000 if I could. This game is easy to start with (if you look at the wiki for crafting information), but extremely hard to master. I'm still discovering new techniques and mechanisms.
Many people hate this game for its bad graphics until they actually get into it. If you ever get bored, try designing: boat elevators, minecart stations, drowning traps that transport the loot to one location, sprinklers (to stop fire), seaports, a base in The Nether, a minecart system that uses the Nether to move between continents, lighthouses to keep you from getting lost, traps that use falling blocks with torches, artificial biomes, underground tree farms, an "artificial mob spawner" (giant underground room with no light, until a switch triggers redstone torches), factories made from real mob spawners, rollercoasters, a mine that uses a grid of tunnels to maximize the amount of ore found, underwater bases made of glass, houses made of ice, a checkerboard (alternating Obsidian and Cloth with other blocks as game pieces), a giant connect-four board (using falling blocks), and your own inventions!
This game is good for anyone who likes sandbox, building, survival, adventure, horror (:P), or teamwork (multiplayer) games.
Minecraft is, in my opinion, the best Sandbox-Adventure Game currently in the gaming market. Though still in Alpha, Minecraft is able to combine the freeness of an infinite, open world to do what you please with a set of simple "life goals," namely: creating a successful mining/spelunking operation to obtain iron & diamond (the two most prized ores in Minecraft), kill monsters, bravely explore the Nether (Minecraft's "hell"), and make the most beautiful, stunning, impressive home you can imagine. Heck, you can even make a whole metropolis if you wish.
For those that don't know, there are 2 versions of Minecraft: Classic & Alpha. Classic is the free version (v0.30), and includes both a Survival Test Mode (which includes an early version of the current survival mode, as Survival Test turned into Indev, than Infdev, and finally, Alpha) and Creative Mode (where you have unlimited blocks, no monsters or health, and can just BUILD). Alpha currently only includes Survival Mode, which is the mode most see in the internet media, and which is the current, up-to-date version of Minecraft. Both Survival Alpha & Classic Creative have Multiplayer modes, so you can build and/or survive right along side your friends.
As Minecraft gets closer to Beta, and then completion, there will be even more things to do, more things to craft & build, more things to hunt & gather, and more fun to be had. Survival will become more difficult, putting more limits on you & making it slower, more focused on surviving (like the mode's name implies). Creative will be re-added & updated for Alpha (no one knows when, currently), and will allow to build what you wish without the limitations of Survival. Even more game modes are likely to be added in the future, too.
Minecraft's only limits are those of your imagination. If you have an open mind and a large imagination, you can create great things in Minecraft. So long as Creepers don't blow it up, of course.
When I first showed some of my friends Minecraft their first impressions were along the lines of "All you do is place blocks in some world with crappy textures". Almost all of those friends now own the game.
Yes, the game is all about placing blocks, yes the textures are low resolution (16x16px infact), but it grows on you quickly.
What you build is limited purely by your imagination (and time). In a randomly generated terrain that is 8 times the size of earth there is no shortage of space to build in nor resources. Notch has some awesome terrain generation algorithms that can produce stunning mountains forests and other beautiful vistas, despite the fact that they are made up from 1 meter high blocks.
I'll say this:
If you don't already own Minecraft, give it a go - play it at a friends place or something and you will quickly see how fun it can be.