Posted by Travis Bruno on May 8, 2012

Minecraft: Xbox 360 Edition Review


Minecraft: Xbox 360 Edition
Developer: 4J Studios, Mojang
Publisher: Microsoft
Release Date: May 9, 2012
Price: 1600 MSP ($20) – Available Here

Overview:
There are many games in the world which are developed by hundreds of workers with millions of dollars spent on creating massive story driven experiences. However there is one game which has none of these things and still has become a main attraction for anyone who plays games on their computer and that game is Minecraft. Nearly everyone on the internet has most likely heard of this blocky game one way or another as the game’s success has reached unheard of levels.

Now the same experience which has become a major timesink for PC gamers and even mobile gamers around the world is now available with the Minecraft: Xbox 360 Edition. While some PC gamers may have been a bit angry to see their beloved game show up on a console, this has made Minecraft’s many enjoyable features available to a much broader audience. However can Minecraft’s Xbox 360 Edition provide the same experience fans are looking for?

Visuals & Audio:
At first glance many would believe that Minecraft was a game from the late 90’s as the graphics are, to be frank, extremely “retro” and outdated. However the blocky nature of the world takes on a life of its own and the pixelated landscape and wildlife all seem to create an atmospheric world unlike anything we’ve seen before.

Every world the player can explore is absolutely massive with a surprisingly large amount of detail, including a number of animals and monsters to face off against all featuring the same blocky structure of the rest of the title. The fact that the game’s background music is absolutely delightful to listen to only helps make every world in Minecraft a joy to explore and experience. In the end, how Minecraft appears is mostly up to the player in the strictest sense as players can mine huge caverns, create gigantic structures and more. Practically the only limit to what you can create in Minecraft is your imagination.

It is worth noting that with the transfer to consoles also comes a slight problem with text size as many players will be playing the game from the comfort of their couch. As such, a lot of the text and images in the inventory system are quite small and difficult to read. This problem is only worsened when split-screen is enabled so be prepared to squint or move closer to the screen if you happen to need an item you don’t know by heart.

Gameplay:
The fact that Minecraft has countless hours of many players’ lives is a bit of an oddity at first glance because Minecraft is, at its core, a simple open world where players are free to do whatever they feel like with absolutely no storyline holding them down. With no story driven gameplay players are able to set their own goals or just explore the various worlds of Minecraft to their hearts content.

Minecraft uses randomly generated sandbox worlds which players are then able to explore, mine and craft various things. Everything in the world has multiple uses and it is the player’s job to put them to use. As you begin you start with absolutely nothing, however punching a tree can produce a block of wood and digging in the dirt can give you some dirt or sand to work with. Attack a cow to get some leather which can be used to make armor or some sheep to get their wool which can then be used for a number of things.

The various items you acquire using this method can then be crafted into tools. For example you can use wood to create a crafting table to then make more wood into wooden planks and then turn those planks into sticks which can then be turned into tools to further your mining capabilities with an axe, shovel, pickaxe and more. Tools and weapons all can break over time, with stronger versions of these tools lasting longer. Creating nearly anything requires resources which is more or less the entire basis of what Minecraft is. Mining resources and crafting anything you can imagine, whether it is gigantic castles, dungeons deep beneath the earth or even a demonic looking area full of lava.

Although the basis of Minecraft is to build things, there are also a number of dangers which lurk around when night falls. One of the first things players will do is create some sort of shelter to hide out in as the worlds of Minecraft are also home to plenty of creatures willing to destroy you and what you have built. Spiders, zombies, skeletons simply seek to kill you while exploding Creepers can destroy large swathes of your creations when they explode. Hiding within an enclosure will keep you safe from harm outside and any light sources will discourage their approach.

It is worth noting that roaming about in the daytime is also quite dangerous as various creatures will lurk within pre-existing caves and players can even dig themselves into a large underground cavern full of dangerous creatures that are seeing food for the first time in ages.  Death isn’t a major detriment however as players will immediately respawn at the last bed they slept in or at the starting area if there are no beds and they simply need to return to where they died to pick up all the items they dropped upon death. Also those who want a peaceful experience can turn the difficulty down to “Peaceful” and no enemies will appear to ruin your nighttime mining, though this does take away from whatever challenge is actually offered in the game.

Minecraft: Xbox 360 Edition is practically identical to the original PC product but a number of accommodations and additions have been made to make things a bit easier for console players. Crafting objects is easier than ever with players no longer needing to manually place materials into a crafting zone. Instead players simply need to select an item to create if they have all the materials for it, and if they don’t it is easy enough to see what you are missing.

Also worth noting is that there is now a Tutorial Mode to choose from which will drop players into a Minecraft world with a number of items and houses already built. Tutorial Mode also gives players a full walkthrough of nearly every aspect of Minecraft. Even outside of the Tutorial Mode players are often presented small descriptions of new materials they come across.

Also added into the mix is the ability to play up to four-player split-screen with your friends in local co-op. This is a nice little feature that brightens up the game world as you explore alongside your friends and dig deeper and craft faster than before with the help of those next to you. Also available is an eight player online mode though it appears that the only way to enter other players worlds or have them join yours is to have them on your Friend’s list, making it difficult to just find a random world to play in.

As mentioned before, how much pleasure you take out of Minecraft ultimately relies upon how much patience you have as a gamer and how open you are to creating your own experience. Those who are looking for any structure to their gameplay or run out of ideas may quickly find themselves bored with the experience. This is only made worse by the fact that any major undertaking will take a very long time.

Minecraft is extremely slow paced and is a major timesink for anyone looking to create massive creations. Even if you are playing with your friends you may find yourself spending hours digging holes in the ground, all the way down to the bedrock, just to find enough resources to create a few things. Mining itself can also begin to feel like a chore as you dig for hours and hours just to acquire one or two items necessary for what you are planning on making. It also doesn’t help that the game’s walking speed is very slow and unmodifiable. In fact the only way to get around faster is to create a minecart which also requires a track to run on. These two things also take plenty of resources to create which you will have to simply dig down and find.

This requires a lot of patience and will to slog through hours of grinding in the dirt. While some may be willing to do this to level up in MMOs or any other RPG, there is no endgame to Minecraft. If you manage to create what you wanted to create, then all you can do is show it off to your friends. As I said before, Minecraft is as fun as you make it out to be and those who find wonder in its blocky world will spend hours upon hours creating various structures and digging into the earth to discover more resources to create even fancier structures, a suit of golden armor, a massive farm of sorts or anything you could possibly imagine.

Overall:
Minecraft: Xbox 360 Edition is a gateway to a world of unending exploration and building which some may wish to enter but only at the cost of their own free time. The pleasure that can be derived from reaching your goals in Minecraft only result upon hours of hard work and perseverance. Minecraft: Xbox 360 Edition is far from a perfect game for everyone and many people will see it as a boring little title with barely anything to offer.

On the other hand those who find themselves enraptured in the experience of mining and crafting will find themselves amazed when they look up at the clock and see that six hours have passed since they started mining away for gold and diamonds. With tutorials and a more streamlined creation system and future updates promised, even Kinect support, Microsoft: Xbox 360 Edition brings with it countless hours of entertainment for those who make it themselves.

8-0-capsules-out-of-10

Related Articles for this post below:

Post a Comment
  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=829924145 ChZuck Bean

    played the demo and it was So much fun!

  • daniel

    well done review, i’m from usa and i played this at a friends house and got really into it

  • SamuelCortez

    The game is GREAT, have redstone, minecart, creeper, hell etc… Is like the originak gameI really, really like the game! I lost the raptr giveaway but I want sooooo much win. God, please help me.

  • Evan Yps

    awesome game (would be even better if i had it on my xbox…)

  • synopsis_psyche

    I don’t know… Review has me wanting to check it out, like how it was put together, descriptive without drawing it out to be 10 pages.  I’ve never played minecraft or a game like it for that matter, but 1600 points seems like a hell of a lot to me for a game thats already made the makers millions, has me on the fence.  Think i will check the demo out in a second.  Good review.

  • http://twitter.com/AngelAtRedline Christhian Rivera

    I’ll be honest. I wasn’t a Minecraft fan at first. But once you try it, it’s actually a hell of a lot of fun. And now that it’s on 360, everyone can try it. Good review, guys.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=610267243 Chipp Shearer

    Good review, and good game.  I’m interested to see how it stacks to the PC version.

  • Josh Weal

    Minecraft is utterly amazing. It would be so intense on Xbox, especially going after achievements! However I would love to see the introduction of mods and texture packs, and the later updated Minecraft, like 1.2.5 on PC, however I’d give it 9/10!joshweal@hotmail.com
    Australia!

    • Jesse

      …it’s not like the achievements are going to be that epic.  They are along the likes of Open your inventory, make a shovel, and make a furnace.  But hey, that in itself seems pretty funny of several of the achievements being so utterly easy.

  • Kenya Allen

    Loved the demo. Cant wait to get some game-age on!!!! (360)

  • Jesse

    I would definitely love to win this game.  That’s $20 FREE.   Definitely seems like a great game to play with a couple of friends and make your own adventures.  I will definitely try to construct an arena with obstacles to ride pigs through in a race.  This game is definitely 100% of what you make of it.  I feel like my creativity and organization (and construction ability) is limited compared to others, but that will not stop me from trying.  And I can enlist the help of more skilled friends to keep my world tidy and accomplish my construction projects.    :)

  • Jakob Main

    Minecraft is such a original game nothing can top it.

  • http://www.facebook.com/jayvan.lean Jayvan Lean

    I forgot to mention a few things when I posted my comments on the game, I am from England, Uk, and my Email address is as follows, jayvanlean@hotmail.co.uk

  • Mike

    Happy fall (is it fall there?) from the USA! I’m not a PC gamer, and I like simplified controls, so I should really be all over this.

  • slayer6409

    I want to win
    – slayer6409

  • slayer6409

    Stop dual posting plz
    – slayer6409

  • Elsparko

    heard nothing but good reports about minecraft. cant wait to sit down and try it out soon!

  • https://twitter.com/#!/Mysticfail JD

     It looks really addicting and relaxing

  • http://twitter.com/343GuiIty_Spark Gilbert Alexander

    Good review I look forward to someday have it in my hands,when child I loved playing with Legos (even now) and after trying the demo I love it but it’s too expensive for me, the proof is that the child I did not play with legos were megablocks (xD) OMFG, One thing I noticed is that in all competitions to win Minecraft always crowded, never notice their true impact until it came out for xbox.

  • Jeremyh317

    I have a ton of friends playing this on my friends list but I’m not sure if its worth $20 though, it does look interesting though.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100001830801499 Marco Marchelli

    Minecraft the best game of 2012 for Xbox360!

  • http://twitter.com/xGamergirlx xGamergirlx

    From USA

    Having playing Minecraft on the PC before, I must say it’s a pleasant game. I recently downloaded the trial for the 360 and was amazed with the port. The controls came with ease after minutes of going through the tutorial. I must say the bigger plus with this over the PC would be easier access to playing multiplayer with friends.

    *I am a bit cautious with leaving my email address in the comments. So if I do happen to win this giveaway please feel free to contact me through twitter.*

  • Ay Dios

    Awesome reviews for a awesome game!

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=512884938 Kristy Mallonee

    Great review. Really looking forward to playing this game on the xbox. A few friends have it and really like it. Thanks.

  • Tyler

    I love the box art, capabilities with this game. Just keep in mind you need an HD TV to support the Multiplayer.  tystarnes@gmail.com From: USA

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/XGYJU2KMAYQMWLMOIMUUTDD2D4 RonnieR

    This game is very engrossing from the demo i played, i hope to win this.

  • http://twitter.com/WilliamRLBaker WilliamRLBaker

    trying to win this for my brother in law.

  • http://www.capsulecomputers.com.au/ MasterAbbott

    Our Competition for Minecraft has ended our two lucky winners are :

    CellophaneGirl
    Joram Malfroy

    Thank you everyone for entering!  Stay tuned for more cool competitions coming up shortly.  For now check our existing competitions currently taking place.

    http://www.capsulecomputers.com.au/competitions/

    Thanks

    • CellophaneGirl

       EEEEEEEEEEEEEEeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!!!!!!!!! THANK YOU CC!!!!

      This has totally made my WEEK! <3 <3 <3

  • Khalique

    khalique