Minecraft Earth Preview – Everything We Know So Far
Minecraft Earth is an upcoming free-to-play augmented reality game developed by Mojang that will be available on mobile devices. It is based on the Minecraft series and is expected to release at some point in 2019. There is a closed beta that you can sign up for via Minecraft Earth’s official website to get a chance at playing the game early. However, there are limited spaces available for the beta, so not everyone who registers will be granted access to it. If you’re picked to play the beta, you will receive an email notifying you!
What Is Minecraft Earth?
You’ve probably heard of Minecraft, but what is Minecraft Earth? Minecraft Earth is an augmented reality game that you will be able to play on iOS and Android devices (iOS 10/Android 7 and above). The game will require an Xbox Live or Microsoft account to play in order for players to track their progress and save their builds or inventory to their profile. Thankfully, you only need the free tier of Xbox Live to play Minecraft Earth.
Minecraft Earth’s gameplay is similar to popular AR games like Pokémon Go and the recently-released Harry Potter: Wizards Unite. Like both these two mobile games, Minecraft Earth features a huge map of your location when you’re wandering around exploring. Instead of Pokémon to capture, there are things called “Tappables” in Minecraft Earth.
Tappables, like their name suggest, require you to tap on them. Doing this rewards you with blocks, objects, and “mobs”. Mobs are various types of creatures, such as pigs and sheep (as well as some less cute characters like endermen!)
You do need to be within 70 meters of a Tappable to receive the reward, however, so you’ll need to move around a little bit. Don’t think you can furiously tap every Tappable on your map standing perfectly still!
On your hunt for Tappables, you will most likely come across an Adventure. Adventures are holographic mini-games that you’ll be able to see on the map through your phone’s camera. These Adventures can be played alone or with a group of players who are close to your location.
There are a lot of things you can do in an Adventure, such as fight mobs, cut down trees to get wood, and collect creatures. You also get the chance of finding rarer materials in Adventures, such as diamond.
Additionally, if other players have joined you in an Adventure, you don’t have to worry about sharing the loot you win. Everything you earn will be placed into your inventory; you don’t need to divvy it up between each player.
The materials you earn in Minecraft Earth can be used in Build Plates. Build Plates are where you design and build your creations. You can breed animals and mobs, farm crops, design your dream house, create castles, make statues of your favorite video game character – just about anything you can do in normal Minecraft. The possibilities are endless. Inviting friends to your Build Plate allows you to trade items and build with them. This means you can get a helping hand with your creation if you’re low on materials (or just aren’t that artistic!).
Build Plates can be minimized into a table-top view to make editing and building them a breeze. Then, you can make your creations life-size so they can be viewed by other players in the world.
Players can’t destroy or build upon your creation unless you invite them to, so you don’t need to fret about others sabotaging your build. With this in mind, make sure the players you invite are trustworthy so you don’t wake up one day and find your creation smashed to smithereens.
Like in the survival mode in Minecraft, health and hunger also play a role in Minecraft Earth. You’ll need to consume food to make sure your health doesn’t drop too low. Being hungry also affects your ability to interact with Tappables and Adventures. If you’re too hungry, then you may not be able to reach certain Tappables and Adventures. That’s why it’s key you look after your character in Minecraft Earth by making sure that they’re well-fed!
Similar to the base version of Minecraft, farming crops and breeding animals (to later cook) are both effective food sources for satisfying your hunger.
Microsoft has said that they are putting in drastic safety measures in Minecraft Earth to ensure everyone can have a fun and safe experience. A free Xbox Live account is needed to play Minecraft Earth, but child accounts come with a lot of protection settings.
Parents and players can use Account Management to tweak safety and privacy settings. Furthermore, all child accounts will not be viewable on the world map unless they are given express permission.
There is also a reporting system that enables players to report any issues they have faced in Minecraft Earth or on its website. A 24/7 moderation team is available to sort out any player concerns.
As mentioned earlier, players cannot access or destroy your creations unless you invite them to do so. Only invited players can change things in your Build Plates. If your Build Plate is publicly viewable, then other players can alter it, but it will go back to normal as soon as the player leaves it. This means your Build Plate cannot be altered permanently by a player, except by invitation.
Minecraft Earth is shaping up to be an impressive AR game. Although there have been a few similar AR mobile games in recent years, Minecraft Earth is bringing a whole new onset of exciting features that could very well make it a more enjoyable and interactive experience than anything currently on the market!
If you’re a fan of Pokémon Go, Harry Potter: Wizards Unite, or AR games in general, then Minecraft Earth is something you need to keep on your radar. A specific release date has not yet been confirmed, but the game is expected to arrive late in 2019.
In the meantime, you can register for the closed beta on Minecraft Earth’s official website to try and get a chance at playing the game early. The closed beta for Minecraft Earth will release in summer 2019, so you won’t have to wait too long to play it if you’re lucky enough to get picked!