Minecraft Earth – What we know so far
Minecraft Earth, a new AR-based mobile game from Microsoft, has been announced for mobiles, and a Minecraft Earth beta is coming soon, too.
It’s still early days in terms of details – there’s no full gameplay trailer just yet, for instance – but we do have a few bits of info we can piece together to get an idea of what the new Minecraft game’s all about, including what we can expect for a Minecraft Earth beta date, too.
There are five key bullet points of info we have from a press release so far:
- Go on Adventures – In Minecraft Earth you’ll go out in the real world to find small clusters of blocks, chests or mobs called Tappables. As you walk, you will also find adventures which are small slices of Minecraft worlds that you play in life-size AR. The examples given are your sidewalk becoming a mine, where there may be diamonds under your feet, or your local park may have Minecraft trees where skeletons lurk. Players will “collect resources, fight mobs, and gain experience points to progress in their career.”
- Collect, explore and survive – Minecraft Earth will feature “many of the Vanilla Minecraft mobs”, along with new ones mobs set to be revealed in-game. You’ll also be able to gather thsoe mobs to “populate builds”, along with all the usual farmable resources.
- Experience your creations all around you – Players can build their own permanent creations in Minecraft Earth through special things called Build Plates, which Microsoft describes as “the best implementation of the creative spirit of the Vanilla game”. With them, you can build in small, tabletop-sized environments where you can interact from above, or if you place your Build Plates on the ground you’ll be able to see your creations outside in “life-size scale”.
- Collaborative multiplayer – Minecraft Earth’s described as “optimised for social multiplayer experiences”, and anyone with an AR-capable smartphone and the game installed will be able to join your session.
- Fancy-tech – Minecraft Earth will use Microsoft-owned technology like Azure Spatial Anchors tracking and PlayFab integration “to bring the game to life for a sophisticated AR gaming experience”.
There’s still not a huge amount of clarity from those points. It seems as though the game is mostly about building Minecraft-style structures around you in the real world, and adding to or joining in with other people’s creations as you walk around. At least that’s what the trailer suggests.