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Game development is fun. There's programming, design, testing and just plain good old silliness. Here's a brief snapshot - a retelling of what I did this weekend!

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Game development is fun. There's programming, design, testing and just plain good old silliness. Here's a brief snapshot - a retelling of what I did this weekend!

I was putting in a few extra hours on Minecraft this weekend, re-factoring code so biomes could directly decorate the terrain themselves rather than having the terrain check the biomes manually. That type of work is mostly just busy work, so it wasn’t very interesting from a design perspective, but it was very rewarding form a programming perspective. Things were starting to fall into place, and biomes became much “cleaner”.

One of the results of that was the first draft of a swamp biome, which I posted a screenshot of. I got crazy amounts of great feedback on how to make it look swampier (it kinda looks like a happy grove at the moment), and almost all of them are entirely doable by only changing the SwampBiome.java class. Feels good!


While testing the biome code, I started running out of food in the game and started hunting animals. Cows would just stand there, looking at me as I mashed them over and over to get their precious loot, so I figured I'd just make that mechanic a bit more fun. Four lines of code later, and animals now flee randomly after taking damage. Hunting animals suddenly became a lot more fun and morally questionable as pigs would storm off grunting and chicken (or whatever the heck they are) would jump into ravines. But the real fun came later on.

Someone tweeted me about a joking campaign to add 3d modelled snouts to the pigs in Minecraft, so I did. While doing so, I groaned at how the Cube class has an “addBox” method that actually means “replaceBox”, and how it really should be a “Shape” class with an “addBox” method that actually does what it says. Right now every box in a model has to be individually animated to match the part it's attached to, and there's no grouping or hierarchy. This is the reason why the horns on the cows are in the wrong location sometimes. I didn't fix the code for this, as I was running out of weekend, but I made a mental note to fix it asap.

Reddit loved my pic of a pig with a 3d snout. I got sooo much precious link karma.


Back to doing some further testing. I was exploring a forest biome, hit upon a river cutting through it, and walked over a small hill. On the other side, a wolf was chasing a sheep, but the sheep was running away. I didn't have this in mind when I wrote the code to make mobs flee, but it ended up giving me an unexpected experience of having some kind of echo system of competing behaviours in various animals, and it just felt.. nice. It made me realize we should explore more mob to mob interactions, and have more chaotic competing behaviour.

I'm doing a high priority secret project this week (a prototype for a future possible project), but I already have at least three things I want to work on as soon as I get back on Minecraft work next week.

The reason it's still fun is you. The community. Thank you. <3

(Development blog link)

Comments
ReezeTheVampire
ReezeTheVampire - - 3,943 comments

Awesome, cool little story. nice and interesting XD.

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Seaalisgonefromhere
Seaalisgonefromhere - - 986 comments

Very Awesome. Fills my heart with joy :D

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warbrand2
warbrand2 - - 391 comments

shouldn't the swamp have more ferns?

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overwhelmed
overwhelmed - - 522 comments

That was a first draft, according to Notch. "I got crazy amounts of great feedback on how to make it look swampier (it kinda looks like a happy grove at the moment), and almost all of them are entirely doable by only changing the SwampBiome.java class." So that screenshot is not the final version of the swamp.

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Radar11m
Radar11m - - 694 comments

That was a nice read

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Mr.Nuke
Mr.Nuke - - 996 comments

eh i wish youd stick with a release date, or if you change it do it more in advance than 24 hours, but at least the more you work on it the better. *watches as this comment gets -20 votes*

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Mr.Nuke
Mr.Nuke - - 996 comments

wow i posted something like this on someother mod and it got buried like in 2 hours so it proves minecraft fans are better :D

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KingBogdanisar
KingBogdanisar - - 14 comments

i heard that the 1.8 update will be released on 12(this monday)...can't wait:)

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MalekTaktak
MalekTaktak - - 178 comments

But.. BUT! You can't hear on the Internet ! You see TEXT ! :D

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KingBogdanisar
KingBogdanisar - - 14 comments

actually someone told it on a youtube video so i heard it:P

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Mr.Nuke
Mr.Nuke - - 996 comments

actually its out now :p

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ShadX222
ShadX222 - - 212 comments

(buried)

DScraft is better than this, seriously.

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jimmy.pl
jimmy.pl - - 89 comments

I am glad they take the time to add these features in, they make the game that much more interactive and fun to stare at although 1.8 seems to keep not coming out, i am glad they are doing these sorts of tweaks' ... Thankyou Mojang

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Zeltrax
Zeltrax - - 379 comments

Notch is my game designing hero ^^

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Dr.Goupyl
Dr.Goupyl - - 2,269 comments

Could be cool if you add crocodile in the swamp no ? :)

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GmansFan
GmansFan - - 221 comments

That would be cool, and make it so they turn hostile when you get within a certain range of them. He should also use soul sand for mud and give it a new texture.

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Blue_Dust
Blue_Dust - - 999 comments

Well from my perspective the self generating stuff will make the maps more stable even if you go really far away (that's where broken chunks are common at).The advanced animal behaivour is a good thing,maybe there could even be compasion for a chicken and you could just feed it some wheat so it can follow you.The adventure update will come,it just needs a little bit of pollishing.

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