Take your block stacking and mob whacking to the great outdoors
Mojang is giving Minecraft players a way to bring the voxel charm of their ultra-popular game to the real world with Minecraft: Earth, an augmented reality mobile game launching in beta this summer.
Minecraft: Earth is planned for release on both Apple and Android OS AR-capable devices, and while Mojang says they are “committed to bringing Minecraft Earth to the entire Earth”, the global rollout will likely start in major markets like the US, Japan and Europe. Interested players can already register for the beta and earn an exclusive avatar skin in the process. An Xbox Live or Microsoft account is required to participate.
Anyone who has played Ingress or Pokemon Go will be familiar with Minecraft: Earth’s pitch, except here the focus is on building and placing cubic creations in the world around you. In the release trailer, your phone will act as a portal into a world rife with classic Minecraft mobs, treasure, collectible resources, and structures placed by fellow players.
The landing page for the game stresses four main hooks: Collect, Explore, Collaborate and Survive. Collection happens by spotting mobs or resources in the world around you and adding them to an inventory for future builds. While it’s not clear if Minecraft: Earth will sport a Pokéstop equivalent, the game will offer challenges to players to encourage interactivity.
You can also team up with friends in order to build grand things together, taking them out into the world or treasuring them in your own home. Here’s hoping the game tamps down on the effort of griefers and ne’er-do-wells with little regard for players’ creative work. We do know you will need to keep a sharp eye and sharper sword out for menacing mobs. It wouldn’t be Minecraft without the threat of Creepers around every corner.
The Minecraft: Earth FAQ states the game will not support lootboxes, and while the game is free there is no word on what other kinds of in-game purchases will be added.
Fans of Minecraft and AR games alike might find something to love in populating the world with boxes, so look forward to busting out those trainers and rechargeable batteries when Minecraft: Earth launches its beta this summer.