Less a game and more a construction set, Minecraft remains one of the greatest time wasters of the past decade in PC gaming. Many games since have “borrowed” its distinctive voxel-based style, but few have succeeded in reproducing the simple, compelling mechanics that have a way of making hours pass unnoticed.


Minecraft in a nutshell is this: the world is made of blocks, about a yard across. You can dig blocks out of the world and put them into your inventory, where you can either use them to make tools or you can place them in the world somewhere else to build structures. The landscape is effectively infinite, containing mountains, deserts, plants, animals, monsters, lakes, caverns, magma flows, precious minerals, and whatever you choose to build out of the available raw materials.


People have built mechanical computers by mining vast quantities of redstone (a semiconductive material found deep below the surface) and painstakingly using it to assemble city-scale circuitry. They have reconstructed real-world cities and entire fictional landscapes. And that’s without even going down the rabbit hole that is the modding community – animal husbandry, manufacturing automation, and nuclear power are just the start.


If you loved Legos as a kid, check out Minecraft. Try not to forget to sleep.


game: minecraft

developer: mojang

publisher: mojang

release date: november 18, 2011

other games like it: Terraria (from re-logic)

author: samwise

image to the left: actual minecraft legos