Minecraft was released in 2011 and it has since taken the world by storm. By 2019, it was the best selling video game of all time. To this day, it continues to grow in popularity with no sign of stopping. But just what is it that makes Minecraft so popular?
With its blocky graphics and zero objectives, the appeal of the game may not seem obvious to some. However, the game clearly has a charm. This post delves into exactly what makes Minecraft so successful.
Minecraft worlds are known for being absolutely huge. One block within the game is the equivalent of one metre – and some of the worlds stretch for 60 million blocks (i.e. 60 million metres). That’s three times the diameter of the Earth.
This brings a true sense of adventure to Minecraft that feels limitless. It also allows players to build their own worlds without ever feeling too constricted.
Minecraft’s ‘Create’ mode is one of its most popular features. By using blocks and by playing with seeds, players can create their own structures and landscapes that can be shared with other players. Some of the most impressive Minecraft builds include a lifesize recreation of the Titanic, a full-size Middle Earth and even an ongoing copy of Earth complete with Mount Everest and the Nile.
The use of blocks makes it much like using virtual Lego. But unlike Lego, you’ll never run out of blocks, allowing you to build to any scale.
Another popular feature of the game are the Minecraft survival servers, in which players work to earn resources in order to build structures and survive attacks against enemy ‘mobs’. Players can play alone or with friends.
Minecraft helped popularise survival-style video games at a time when survival horror movies were at a peak. Unlike many other survival-style video games, Minecraft remains popular for its simplicity, allowing players to gain levels without cluttering the game with other achievements and objectives.
Minecraft’s community has grown organically and is a big part of what makes the game so successful. There are countless forums, YouTube channels and websites dedicated to Minecraft in which players share builds and gameplay.
The creators of Minecraft have nurtured this community and have listened to their desires when introducing new updates. As a result, the entire community has helped to build and improve the game.
The true metaverse
This year, Mark Zuckerberg decided to shelve his ‘Metaverse’ project. The Metaverse’s failure to take off wasn’t because there wasn’t a demand for a virtual world – it’s because the metaverse technically already existed in the form of Minecraft.
Minecraft allows many people to escape into a new world where primal human desires such as the ability to explore, forage and build freely are allowed. In the real world, many of these primal behaviours are no longer possible due to laws and high costs. Minecraft is a chance to release our inner caveman in a virtual world without physical danger – and this is a big part of why it is so popular.