Minecraft May Be The Most Important Game Of The Next Generation
24 Dec 2013 Orion 0
The next generation of video gaming is in full swing, and Minecraft is right there along for the ride. Once the popular PC/Mac game got ported to the Xbox 360, its popularity soared, and new versions followed. The downloadable PS3 version is now available, and even garnered enough attention to be voted third best downloadable title by the Playstation community. Not stopping there, the team behind the Xbox 360 port is developing versions for next-gen consoles. There is even a rumor of a Minecraft in development for the WiiU.
But this isn’t about the next generation of video gaming. This is about the next generation of humanity. If you’ve never played Minecraft, well, it matters little. You’ve seen the merchandise, you’ve heard talk of it. You can’t escape it these days. Why is it taking off? It’s apparent that a big part of its current success has to do with children.
I thought maybe these young boys and girls were simply the odd ones out, preferring a complicated world-building simulator over Saturday morning cartoons. But I’ve seen how wrong I was the more I ran into the intersection of Minecraft and the younger generation.
I’ve overheard talk of Minecraft among grade-schoolers enough that it doesn’t even surprise me anymore. The first few times I did, it both surprised and delighted me. I thought maybe these young boys and girls were simply the odd ones out, preferring a complicated world-building simulator over Saturday morning cartoons. But I’ve seen how wrong I was the more I ran into the intersection of Minecraft and the younger generation.
This holiday season, it has become even more prevalent. Walmart fliers advertise Minecraft action figures right beside Darth Vader and CM Punk. But Minecraft is neither a science fiction movie nor a dramatized wrestling match. It’s an interactive experience that I once thought would be suitable only for a niche of adult PC gamers. It’s a rather complex video game, requiring the player to transition into its randomly-generated world without hand-holding and then manipulate that world in order to survive. You suddenly have to become a survivalist and an architect and an engineer all in an instant. This is not a game for kids.
The thing is, it totally is a game for kids. It’s just a very complex one. This game comes with a lot of requirements, but the rewards are apparently worth it. It’s like Dwarf Fortress for grade schoolers, and yet it’s not something that a handful of elite gamers have experienced. It’s popular, and it’s gaining more popularity.
There are reasons the game has become such a popular source of entertainment. You don’t have to look past the fun and addictive nature of the game itself, but if you do, you’ll find more. For example, the game has a little bit of something for everyone. In my experience, young boys and girls both talk about their exploits in survival mode and their achievements in creative mode. It’s also appreciated and encouraged by many parents and teachers. One of the reasons for the spike in popularity has to be its proliferation on so many platforms. Touchscreen versions on tablets and phones made the game accessible to a much wider audience than even the release of the 360 version.
Minecraft is not going away anytime soon, and the children who participate are encouraged to have skills that most forms of entertainment would not worry about. It also builds those skills in an environment that is fun and engaging. It gives me hope for that generation.RelatedOrion (64 Posts)
Orion grew up playing well-known Nintendo 64 games and cult classic PC strategy gems. He is excited about the potential video games have as a storytelling medium. That said, he really enjoys board games and wants nothing more than some friends who feel the same way. He can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org
Rogue Legacy Review