MINECON Earth 2018 Highlights
MINECON Earth aired last weekend and there were some incredible surprise announcements throughout the show. There was a little something for everyone, with new mobs, a brand new Minecraft game, and as well as big news for Modders!
You can read a summary of the entire show over on minecraft.net, or just keep reading for a break down of all of the announcements, and our take on what’s to come in Minecraft over the next year!
Customisation: add-ons & scripting
Owen Jones, the Director of Creative Communications at Mojang, hosted a talk show style segment during the live stream, bringing along experts guests from Minecraft’s development team to reveal some of the most exciting changes that are coming to the game in the near future. His first two guests were software developers from the Minecraft Redmond office, Jason and Adrian who have been working on allowing players to make Minecraft even more customisable with additional add-ons. If you don’t know what add-ons are, they’re a great way to modify Minecraft, allowing players to transform the look of their worlds and change the behaviour of mobs with resource packs and behaviour packs. You can read more about them on the official Minecraft Wiki.
Jason and Adrian revealed that they have been working on making things even more customisable by enabling players to add their own new entities, instead of needing to modify the look and behaviour of an existing one. In addition to adding new entities, we will be able to add custom animations to really bring these mobs to life. There will also be the ability to alter mob spawning behaviours in order to allow you to control when, where or even if mobs spawn in your world. To top it all off, Minecraft will be supporting API scripting in the future, with more news to come on that at a later date.
With limitless possibilities and the freedom to customise, these additions make the future of map making in Bedrock really exciting!
New mobs coming to Minecraft
Owen was then joined by Jens, the Chief Creative Officer at Mojang and Agnes, a Game developer also based in the Stockholm office, to talk about some of the new mobs that will be coming to Minecraft, starting with…
… Pandas! We haven’t heard much about the adorable creatures yet, but we do know that they enjoy snacking on bamboo (ooh, that’s new) which can be used to make scaffolding: perfect for building your perfect survival home! When introducing the new mobs, Agnes also explained that the pandas will have different personality traits such as lazy, playful, and even aggressive. By the looks of the teaser video, the babies will also let out little squeaks and sneezes which is literally the cutest thing to be introduced to Minecraft yet. I highly recommend watching the video linked below to check out the teaser for yourself and watch Mojang’s sound engineer Samuel as he travelled to Guangzhou, China to record real panda sounds!
Agnes and Jens also revealed that cats and ocelots will be separated into two different species. Right now in Minecraft, you can use fish to tame ocelots and turn them into one of three variations of domestic cats: tabby, Siamese and tuxedo. When the update comes around, there will instead be nine different variations of stray cats, and they will spawn naturally within the world around villages. Eight of the nine skins have been designed already with Jens announcing that the final design will be chosen with a community competition, giving the chance for one Minecraft fan to have their own cat immortalised within the game! Agnes revealed that cats will bring their owners gifts (although what these gifts are remains to be seen) and scare off phantoms, which is good news for every night-time adventurer.
Jens said that we should expect cats, pandas, bamboo and scaffolding in this year’s holiday update, so we don’t have to wait long for our new furry friends! As for the cat competition, there should be more on that over on minecraft.net within the next few weeks.
Minecraft Update: Village & Pillage
Last year at MINECON Earth 2017, the team announced Update: Aquatic which finally reached our devices in summer of this year. The sea life update focussed on bringing the oceans to life and included new mobs, blocks, items and even generated structures such as underwater ruins and shipwrecks. Jens announced that this year, the next big game-wide update will be themed around Minecraft villagers, who have not received any significant improvements since their original implementation more than seven years ago. As with any big update, there are a huge number of changes coming our way:
Architecture update for all villages
Architecture influenced by the biome
New skins for each villager type (re-themed for each biome)
Increased villager intelligence
Update to trading
All of the changes look to bring a positive new vibe to villages and their inhabitants in general, but by fair the biggest influence on gameplay is sure to be the introduction of raids. ‘Pillagers’, armed with a new high-powered weapon and their trusty ‘Beast’, will tear through villages, looting and destroying thing as they go. Although we don’t know where they come from or why they want to destroy our lovely peaceful villages, we’ve already started thinking about ways to protect our villagers in our own survival worlds.
With the Village & Pillage update comes access to a new weapon: the crossbow. Agnes explained that the crossbow will be more powerful than the regular Minecraft bow, dealing more damage and firing further, with the downside that it takes longer to load than the bow. As well as it being wielded by angry pillagers, you’ll be able to craft crossbows for yourself, and upgrade them with multi-shot and fast-load enchantments. It sounds like there will be at least one more enchantment announced at a later date too… Agnes, we know you’re holding out on us!
Jens told us to expect this update in early 2019. Don’t forget to tweet him @_jeb if you have any name suggestions for the ‘Beast’!
And last but not least, Minecraft: Dungeons has been announced as Mojang’s next adventure into the Minecraft universe. Although we’ve only heard a little about what’s to come from the game, it’s being described on minecraft.net as ‘an all-new action-adventure game, inspired by classic dungeon crawlers’.
Although we’re yet to find out much more than that, it appears from the announcement trailer that there will be different classes to choose from, including one that looks suspiciously like it’s carrying a wand… exciting! Minecraft: Dungeons is coming to PC in 2019 (we’re yet to find out if it will be later heading to console) so while we keep a look out for more information, get ready to gear up, team up, explore new environments and take on brand new bosses in the Minecraft universe!
I think that just about sums up some of the best announcements from the show! MINECON Earth 2018 was absolutely full of exciting announcements and great fun for the community. I would highly recommend watching the full show if you haven’t already (you can do so here).
Also, don’t forget that our brand new mini-game map Grid Runners is available to download for free on any Bedrock device so head over to the store to get your hands on it right now!