Some years ago I came across this guys that called himself Notch (Markus Persson) who was asking 10 US dollars to download his game that he developed and needed funding to make the game better and do more enhancements. I took up this offer and thought it was a great initiative and why not, I’m helping out a fellow developer start up his own company.
I downloaded the game which was called Minecraft, but found it a bit tedious as I had lots of other more important things to do than to build blocks the whole day, or dig myself to oblivion to find some diamonds.
Fast Forwards to waaayyy later, actually xx years later, and now I have 2 boys aged 4 and 7. My eldest came home telling me that his friends at school is playing this game and he also wants to play this game … Minecraft. As any father will, I will do anything to satisfy the wishes of my children, and I told them that if they waited a day or two I would get them the game …
So off I went and Googled Minecraft and got to the website, and to my surprise my login details still worked, and I managed to download the game on the first night and installed the game on two desktops at home.
I first started to show Minecraft Single Player to my eldest, which very quickly just grasped the concept and started building like crazy in Creative Mode. I was really amazed at the things that he started building. It was amazing how quickly he learnt basic keyboard and mouse skills, and co-ordination between the two input interfaces was amazing.
After a week of leaving him up to build his own amazing worlds, I introduced him to survival mode, and also how to LAN the game between our two desktops. I started playing Survival Mode with him for about 2 weeks. Again – for a 7 year old to remember the sequence and combinations and rules surrounding the game was astonishing. And he just kept on learning new things and coming up with new and interesting combinations of getting new things done. Still don’t know how he got to building a living snowman.
Not having so much time to spend on gaming, I also introduced his little brother of 4 to the game, and what a pleasure to see this little man become so passionate and loving playing in Creative Mode. Survival mode is still a bit too boring and slow for him. He loves to build his own worlds, and him and his brother now play on the LAN in the same world and are just loving it, screaming, laughing and building all kinds or worlds for themselves.
I can’t believe that such a simple concept game can be so addictive and also a great way to providing my boys with so much fun and learning, and a different kind of way to interact with one another.
As of today my eldest is allowed on certain online Minecraft servers where he can participate in some Creative Mode and some other Minecraft world games like paintball, hide and seek and many more.
If you have children and you want to start getting them to get used to working on a PC and work on those motoring skills, this definitely is a winner.
Just an amazing video I found(for the geeks) – this guy built a 16-bit ALU in Minecraft (or representation of the ALU)