Minecraft 2, Part 1: The Game Engine

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    AvatarGameWyrm
    @gamewyrm

    (This originally appeared on the Minecraft Forum here)

    Minecraft 2, Part 1:

    The Game Engine<u></u>

    Note to Critics (Please Read)

    Yes, I know that Minecraft 2 is a generally disliked suggestion. I am aware of the big arguments against it, and I don’t anticipate this series of suggestions to be my most successful ones yet. However, I ask that you give this suggestion a chance, not instantly discounting it just because other Minecraft 2 suggestions tend to be either bland and uninteresting, or because suggestions that don’t fit into the current game are often just thrown into the idea of a sequel. I believe I have found a way to make the game different enough to warrant a sequel yet still be Minecraft. Also, as this series progresses, I ask that you don’t choose to not support the whole thing just because you disliked one entry.

    Why we could use a Minecraft 2, and what the goals of a sequel would be (in my eyes)

    I’ll get this out of the way first: I am not making this thread because I think Minecraft is dying and that it needs a new game to reinvorgorate interest in the game. As far as sales goes, the game is still going strong, even if servers and social media interest is declining. Hence, why I have titled this segment “Why we could use a Minecraft 2” and not why we need it. However, I do believe that Minecraft is past its prime and that many players are getting bored with or at least are no longer impressed with the game. That’s natural and happens with every other game in existence, and the game is nearly six years old (eight if you include Classic). However, that doesn’t excuse the sense of staleness the game has, and the recent updates are largely just considered good rather than great, and very rarely “the best” update (from what I’ve seen on this forum, anyway). I think the Minecraft franchise would largely benefit from a new game, as it could be such a new experience it could bring back those who thought it stale, as well as bring in many new players. There’s also the fact that the game needs a complete rewrite, which would be a great time to rethink the game as well.

    Now, I think you understand that I want a new experience, but certainly there must be more to justify the time and resources into a sequel? Well, I’ve got a bunch of ideas, but it would make this suggestion a wishlist to include them all, so I’ll just give you an idea of the guidelines I’m following for these suggestions:

    • Aimed towards a more “hardcore gamer” audience than the original, being a bit more difficult and focusing more on depth than simplicity
    • A longer progression system, with less grinding and content padding between major progress points
    • Implementation of Cubic Chunks
    • Modern graphics that don’t require a behemoth graphics card to run
    • Maximizing customizability while still be a great game on its own by default
    • An underground worthy of being in a game called Minecraft
    • Not being afraid to break a major convention of the current game if it would lead to a more fun overall experience

    Introduction

    Every game needs its own engine to run. Some use a third-party engine, while others use a custom engine. The game engine handles how the entire game runs and connects all of the game’s other engines. So, how should Minecraft 2’s base engine work?

    Now, I’m not going to get too technical with this, as I’m sure that would be gibberish to a lot of you, and frankly I’m only an amateur programmer myself. However, there may be some basic programming terminology mentioned in this, such as a class, which is basically just a section of code meant to handle a specific thing.

    Minecraft’s current engine is in need of a lot of work. The code is convoluted, filled with “spaghetti” code, and runs inefficiently. The names of the classes are obfuscated, which is supposed to prevent piracy, but mostly serves only to break mods between versions. However, instead of just rewriting it, how about some new features as well? In addition, what about some background information, like development and platforms?
    Note that this suggestion will only talk about the game engine. Other engines, such as the rendering engine, will not be discussed in this suggestion, though they may be discussed in later suggestions in this series.

    The Game Engine

    As far as major features, there would be only one new one: the ability to customize your Minecraft 2 experience using packages. A package is basically a resource pack, but instead of just overwriting textures, a package overwrites and adds in new code. There would be the basic “Minecraft 2.0.0” package, and all updates would be added as a separate package. For example, let’s the basic package didn’t initially have alchemy in it. They could release another package, “2.1.0-Alchemy Update,” which you could then apply to the game from the launcher. This means that the base package is never modified (except for maybe bug patches). However, this also means that every package is largely independent and wouldn’t require any other package to be enabled to be utilized (they could require another package, for example if a mod is dependant on a particular API, but the vanilla packages wouldn’t require another package to be enabled for the most part). So, let’s say you didn’t like the features of 2.1., but you wanted to play with the new features of 2.2. You could enable the packages you want, and keep the ones you dislike disabled. What if 2.2 added an item that had an alchemical use, but you had 2.1 disabled? The item would still be available, but because you don’t have any ability to do alchemy, the item won’t be able to perform its alchemical purposes. Mods would also be released as packages, and could just be installed by putting them in the packages folder, and would likely always be compatible with the base game and wouldn’t be broken by updates. The only major problems I could see with this is that major overhauls would have to be avoided due to problems with balancing if you played with a later update with the overhaul disabled. However, this increases customizability, and I say one should be able to play Minecraft however you want. For an example of a game that has this kind of system, look at Bethesda game Skyrim.

    All platforms of the game would be written in the same language, probably C++. This would allow for cross-platform play across all versions (where the platform owners allow), and all versions could easily be updated at the same time. The engine would likely run on DirectX 11, which would allow for better graphics and better performance. This would, unfortunately, increase the system requirements a bit, but most modern computers should be able to run it.

    Minecraft 2 would be developed by a whole new team hired by Mojang to work on the game (Mojang YZ?) while the original team continues to work on the original game and provides guidance. Thus, we would still get updates to the prequel during the time (likely three or four years) it takes the sequel to develop. As for after release, I assume the original Minecraft would get one more update, and then only get bug fixes. The game would be released on all major platforms simultaneously (Xbox One, PS4, Switch, Mobile, Steam, and Windows App Store).

    Well, that’s all there is for the engine, as while it’s integral part of the game, it’s not very interesting to discuss, and most people only see the game itself, and not the engine behind it. Still, there is loads more about Minecraft 2 to discuss, but I will save them for later entries in this series to avoid this being considered a wishlist. Stay tuned!

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