In between visits from cousins, swimming lessons, spending way too much time in Publix, trips to the movies and the bowling alley and our light schedule of summer home school, there has been Minecraft. It is a mix of Lego with all regular gaming possibilities.
New to the game? Borrowed from the official Minecraft website:
Minecraft is split into two separate game modes. Creative and Survival. You can play both of them in multiplayer. If you’re mostly interested in making huge structures from scratch with unlimited resources, Creative mode is your best bet. You won’t see any enemies, and you can pull blocks of all shapes and sizes out of thin air. It’s a peaceful world.
However, if you’d prefer to adventure into a world of danger, where you’re crafting and creating out of necessity, you’ll probably want to play in Survival mode. That comes with gangs of monsters who want to break/explode/eat your bones, one pixel at a time. You’ll need to protect yourself from the creatures that come out at night.
My oldest is 12 and he lives to play the Hunger Games in Survival mode on the PC, but it wasn’t always that way. He and my 8 year old boy/girl twins started out playing the game on the Xbox. It was there that they created fantastic worlds, mansions, a 747 airplane, cars and all the things you would need for those designs like paintings and rugs for the buildings.
This is not from my children, but from Wikipedia. I thought this City Hall was a great example of what you can do in the game.
Then they moved on to creating Parkour (par-core) courses. These are jump mazes are designed for other people to play.
I loved the game when my children used critical thinking skills to create everything from scratch, such as raising sheep if they wanted wool to create a rug for a home they built.
This summer has been about Survival mode and the Hunger Games though. They moved most of their gaming to the PC and with their new and carefully monitored Skype account, it isn’t “Mommy, look what I made!” any longer.
I now listen to the angelic voices I gave birth to yell into the mic:
“Oh My God, I’m dead.”
“He’s punching me to death.”
“I’ve got booty!”
“I killed him and now I have a BUTTLOAD of loot.”
“Get that chest. No, that CHEST! NO! THE CHEST UP THERE!”
“I beat him even though he had a diamond sword and I had the stone one!”
“I’m going after that guy. He killed me and I need revenge.”
and once in a while… “Mom, look at the great ______ I made today!”
It’s still a great video game. I love all the layers to it, but mostly I enjoy their love for a game that is always evolving, always creative and always gets them to use their heads.
For the record, my daughter (shown above) loves it just as much as her brothers do. She rarely has trouble making her way through a game still dominated by boys and she wishes more girls would play.
xoxo ~ Melissa