Friday, 17 June 2011

Minecraft Adventures: Tribalfield Minecraft, the end of my era or so it seems (but not Minecraft’s)

Hi Folks, well I guess those of you who still (and I say still cause the number is dwindling) frequent the Tribalfield minecraft server much lately, I suppose after number of months, my fascination with Minecraft has finally run it’s course, this makes me quite sad as Minecraft was always the main focus of the blog (as the background would suggest) which I had created the first time the Tribalfield forum came down as I wanted somewhere to showcase my thoughts and namely screenshots I had taken of my various Minecraft creations.

I’m not exactly sure what has made me feel less and less enthusiastic about going online and creating, I think it may have been due to a number of factors;

The first would be the people the other beings that you communicate and interact with in the game, I know that now Tribalfield is not as populated as it once was and I also know that with all games having people to play and build with makes the whole experience a lot more fun and extends the longetivity, of course this does mean that you have to get along at least on the most minimal level with the other people who happen to be on the server and in a lot of cases you don’t, and then you soon have your own select few people who you like to play with. It’s this particular formula that has led to the creation of the Tribes as we know them being set up on the server and the tribal ‘claims’ set up as land only tribal members can access with (sometimes fortified) towns being set up with the adequate protective measures .

The formely named town of "Fiendfield". Thriving city of happy productive and law abiding citizens? or thieving cesspit of  crime and vandalism? You Decide!

This leads into the whole tribal claims thing, my good friend Dickdatson made quite an impressive area for himself, not to mention the aptly named “Cat Poo Mines” but he told me that he was discouraged from continuing his work on the server because of constantly being hampered by bumping into other people’s claims (namely Sherwood :D) while mining. I had also found this whole issue of claims difficult for myself, it's just annoying when your trying to mine or spread and you cant, I had a thought that we just forgo claims altogether and just have warps as with the old days, and the only difference the tribes would make is what special ability you have. I do know this is going to lead to more griefing, but frankly griefing happens anyway, even with claims if it’s not some random it’s other tribe members (or people with mod or admin power for that matter) and I think it would be more fun if you could build with anyone at anytime.  

Yes that is diamond there, and contrary to what you might think, Warpage and I managed to be civilized enough to divide the many wonderous blue treasures between us .

Of course, not everyone shares the same “we’re all buddies” relationship that I try to maintain with other players and would rather ambush their enemies and frenzily hack or bludgeon them to death with any kind of instrument possible and make off with their entire belongings both on their person and in their house while squealing with glee like crazed rodential scavengers. Instead this boiled down into some sort of political turmoil resulting in tribal wars which to be honest I found kind of odd if not laughable at first. Don’t get me wrong I don’t hate the whole tribe war thing, I do think it’s a way to make things more interesting but it’s very complicated as you can see from my post on the matter, all I could see it doing was to get people angry and cause trouble. Our chests can be locked, that’s the main thing I care about, if someone griefs my place, hey I have something to do at least by fixing it, or I can just make a whole new thing to live in. During my time on the AEF Minecraft server (or firefly as it was referred to by most of you) they had a chest locking system but no claims, and it worked, well for us it did, not so much for the people near spawn but what can you do, stuff just happens and getting angry or upset about it just makes things worse as with all games.

Another point is that a problem I’ve had with Minecraft was that I only seemed to like creating places to live for myself, a virtual dwelling and although I’m rarely part of a town (due to my inability to follow building restrictions) I tend to make my houses either on top of trees, in the sky, underground, or so heavily fortified that I don’t feel the need to build anything else around it, it’s sort of an ‘alone in the wilderness’thing that I like that being in a town doesn’t have the same feel. This wasn’t what I had always done in Minecraft though, when I first started playing singleplayer I would create whole networks of mines and mine tunnels and minecart tracks to go through them, but apart from the various structures that acted as secure ways to each natural mine that was all I had built. It wasn’t until I started rebuilding my multiplayer houses and creations in singleplayer as a way of keeping them forever that I actually had more then one major structure lying around the valley that my main house was in.

I started using the mod SingleplayerCommands as a way of making it easier to rebuild my previous creations (which were sometimes rebuilt bigger and better), although this worked it has kind of ruined my singleplayer experience a bit as I seldom want to go back to obtaining items (especially hard to find ones) myself, I guess what Zero Punctuation's Ben“Yahtzee” Croshaw says is true about how the longer it takes you to obtain the items and build what you want to build the more you love it when it’s finished. In comparison to being able to spawn anything you want similar to Half-Life 2’s Gary’s Mod it’s only takes a few hours of spawning random objects and enough TNT barrels for the ensuing explosion to crash your system before you start getting kind of bored playing an all powerful being of “summoningness”.


Gary's Mod, love it or hate it, another true sandbox experience

 But by far the most common problem I would think most of us have had is what to do next? when faced with the opportunity to build anything after a while with no objective in mind we end up doing nothing, walking around our already perfected structures and with no way to perfect them. It’s this harrowing experience that many of us go through in sandbox games especially the Grand Theft Auto series where once finished with the story mode and a whole virtual city at your disposal you still end up getting bored quite quickly. It's the kind of thing that seems weird that you would get to that point when you start the game and everything seems massively overwhelming at first, but what is the answer? some prefer to move on, others like myself, tend to start the whole experience again and try to pretend we're as dumb and clueless as we were when we first started, which with Minecraft is no easy feat.

GTA4, thats the story mode down, now for a different perspective, after playing the 2 expansions, going in for a third run myself
 That said though Minecraft is amazingly still in BETA it sometimes may be hard to believe that the game has already achieved this much I have always said that we would be sick of it before it was even a full version, but this is the first time I think I have seen a game realeased in this fashion and it may be an example of many more games produced by "small time" studios to come. Minecraft is a game thats viewed and played in many different ways by many different people and it's that versatility and the sandbox style which makes it so popular, it's one of those games which you are glad you tried at the encouragement of your friends.

If you asked the people who made this 'was it worth it?' I think you'd know what the answer would be

As for me I hope to see Minecraft grow to the full product it should be and will continue play from time to time as my work and commiments (not to mention to other games) allows. I'm both sad and glad to say I will definately be going back to my one of the more prominent games in my life; World of Warcraft which took up a quite large amount of time in the 3 and a half years I spent playing it. As I do need to explore the rest of the Cataclysm expansion but take comfort in the fact that although it's gotten my attention for a much longer time then Minecraft and still has quite a friendly and helpful customer service (not to mention fixing my one major account comprimise) the difference is that Minecraft is more of a "game for the people" rather then the "massive corporate product" that Blizzard has created i don't know if that makes much sense but I guess that is how you can percieve it. 

So without further ado I'd like to thank everyone I've met in my time on the Tribalfield server and hope to play with you again whether on Minecraft, another game or just chatting on facebook, I have to admit I was kind of proud to be one of the 'older' players on the server as it has been a pleasure meeting and exploring and building with all of you,

With Thanks to; (in order of appearance :), and apologies if I miss anyone)

mystic_duck, Mickle, wagapm, chaote, angrathar, Carceous, lupidoo, harro223, Kieran_Cahill, Dr_Uhhhh, Da_Seano, jabbcore,  FletcherHD, PresidentFreeman, danielstiglec, elboomer, Jorobinson, captain_pugwash, Frewer, TheFiendish, Ventelation, rawrbleh

And of course; kakashi57, laver987654321, WarpageHD, Atomic_Sandwich, DickDatson and last but not least; NorC, whose hard work and dedication are what made the server so great.

See ya round...


p.s I would be daff not to mention The Old Republic a Star Wars MMORPG?! who can resist it could be the WoW replacement I have been looking for, but if not I will play it nonetheless as Minecraft showed and still does show, we can't be stuck to the same game our whole lives.

Damn, might have to change my blog wallpaper methinks,