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Saturday, 5 May 2012

What is Minecraft? Basic stuff

This tutorial is intended for complete beginners to Minecraft Survival Alpha, it covers the basics of crafting, gathering resources and explains basic game mechanics with the aid of lots of screenshots.

First of all, we need to start up Minecraft Alpha. The download is in the attachments.
Save it wherever you want, then run it.
Log in with your user name and password, it'll update the game, then you should see something like this:

At the time of writing, multiplayer is not out yet, so we'll click on the button which says single player.

This is the place where we can see all of our saved games or “worlds”. I already have one, but I'm going to make a new one for this tutorial, I'll click on the world 5 button, but pick any one you want, it doesn't matter.

The game is building my world; good.

Okay, I've spawned and I have to admit, this isn't the best view I've ever seen.
The first thing I'm going to do is go looking for some trees.
Wood is very useful on Minecraft, you can make loads of things out of it, including walls, doors, torches, primitive tools and even boats.

Aha, there's a tree over there, let's walk over to it and start punching it with our fists.
You can do this by holding down the left mouse button while looking directly at the trunk.

Okay, so I've cut down a tree with my bare hands and I'm ready to make some tools.
Let's push the “I” key on the keyboard, which should bring up your inventory.

As you can see, I have four tree trunk blocks, but they're not very useful to me like that.
I'm going to click on the blocks to move them, then click again on one of the four “crafting” boxes in the top right.
For more advanced information on crafting, you should read here.

Great. See how a picture of a plank block appears to the right? That means that we can turn the blocks into planks. I'm going to click on that till all the blocks have been made into planks.

Okay, so now we have planks and some wood.
It's time to make some tools.
Unfortunately, this crafting window is too small to make tools with, so we're going to need a workbench.
To make one of those, you arrange the wood like this:

You might be wondering how I split the wood into 4 stacks. You can use the right mouse button to place 1 block at a time instead of the whole stack.

Okay, I'm going to click on the workbench in the crafting window to make it, then put it in the special row at the bottom of my inventory.
That row is special because that row is what you have equipped, so to speak.
You need tools to be in that row to use them and blocks to be in that row to place them.
So, I'll put it there:

Now, I'm going to make sure it's the block I'm holding, you can change which block you're holding in your hand with the mouse wheel or the number keys.

Now I'm going to place it on the ground by pressing the right mouse button.

Now if I right click on the new workbench, I can see this:

See how the crafting window is now 3x3 instead of 2x2? This means that I can make more complicated tools and blocks with it.

Before that, though, I need some sticks.
You make sticks by putting a plank above another plank, like this:

You get 4 sticks for every 2 planks, which is just as well, as you need a lot of them.

Now that I've got some sticks, I have everything I need to make a wooden pickaxe.

Now to move it into the bottom row of my inventory.

Okay, I have a working wooden pickaxe, but wooden tools aren't very good at all.
I'm going to try and find some stone to make some stone tools, this shouldn't take long.

There's a nice cliff, now let's walk up to it and mine some of the stone using my pickaxe.
About 6 stone should do, enough to make another pickaxe and an axe.

I'll head back to my workbench and let's make some nice new tools.

This is how you make a stone pickaxe, exactly the same way as the wooden one, but with wood instead of stone. It goes like this for all other materials too.

And this is how we make a stone axe.

Armed with my new arsenal, things are going well, but it's going to get dark soon.
Monsters spawn in the dark and are very hard to fight if you can't see a thing, so we'll need somewhere light that they can't get into.
For light we'll need torches, for torches we'll need coal.
Let's go find some coal. You should be able to see it in the side of cliffs quite easily.

There's some. See the stone with black bits in it? That's coal. We'll need to mine it:

Okay, so I've mined the coal, but there were only two lumps there. Oh well, that should be enough for 8 torches and it's going to get dark soon, so we'll just make the torches now.

That's the “recipe” for making torches, a stick with a lump of coal on top.

Okay, it's going to get dark soon, so I'm going to need somewhere to hide out the night.
What I usually do on the first night is find a bit of cliff, then dig into it and make a small room.

Here's a nice bit of cliff, now I'll carve out a doorway with my pickaxe.

I started making a small room, but my pickaxe broke.

This happens when the durability bar (which you can see below a tool's picture) empties.
It starts off full and green, then slowly drains as you use it before the tool breaks and disappears from your inventory.

Oh well, I'm going to need a new pickaxe to finish my room, but my workbench is a small walk away and I can't be bothered walking over there, so I'll make a new one to put inside my cave house.

Done. I needed to cut down another tree and craft a new workbench, but you should know how I did that by now. Time to make a new pickaxe and finish my room.

Okay, it's done, but it's a bit dark.
Monsters spawn in the dark, I'd better light it up.
Luckily, I made some torches earlier, so it's just a simple matter of placing them on the walls or floor using the right mouse button.

That's it all lit up and I'm feeling pretty chuffed with my new house.

I'm going to quickly make a furnace which is used for smelting ores and cooking food:

Uh-oh, it's getting dark outside and I've just noticed our doorway is wide open.

I better quickly make a door like this:

Once you've placed it in the doorway, it should look like this:

Doors are a bit fickle and sometimes won't go where you want them to or the right way round, so you might have to destroy it once or twice to get it in the right place, but once you get it in the right place, you can open and close it by clicking on it with either mouse button.

Don't worry though - monsters are too stupid to open your door.

There. I now have somewhere safe to survive my first Minecraft night.
I hope you've found this tutorial useful, for more advanced information, you should probably check the Minecraft Wiki.

Miscellaneous info:
If you are confused by something, check the Minecraft Wiki.

Be careful not to get hoes and pickaxes mixed up.
A pickaxe is made like this and is used for mining rock and minerals:

F11 enters fullscreen mode, F5 enables 3rd person mode.

A hoe is made like this and is used for tilling land in order to grow crops in it:

A hoe will not work for mining rock or minerals.

If I've missed anything, made any mistakes or you can think of ways for me to improve this guide, please reply and tell me how I've messed up.


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