Minecraft Dev Diary -- weather, GDC awards, Scrolls
Today we bring you another glitter-covered page from the secret diary of Swedish indie dev sensation Mojang, the creators of Minecraft and arbiters of wonder.
Its been several weeks since my last entry and during that time a lot of things have happen. I will do my best to remember them all. First up, GDC! In early March, we flew out the entire company to attend the Game Developers Conferense in San Fransisco. This turned out to be a week of complete awesomeness. We got to meet so many nice people ranging from Mojang fans to people we ourselves are fans of. A BIG thank you to everyone who visited our little booth and told us how much you like Minecraft. It gave us tons of energy that we are now channeling into development!
Wednesday night's award show was something of a high point for this week as Minecraft hit the jackpot and received five awards. IGF Audience Award, IGF Grand Prize, GDCA Best Downloadable, GDCA Best Debut and GDCA Innovation. This was totally overwhelming and the rest of the night is somewhat of a blur to be honest... Also there was champagne. Extensive amounts of champagne..
Oh, yeah...do you remember the cardboard Steve heads we were bringing? We ran out in 15 minutes. Apperently, we totally underestimated the demand for them, so sorry everyone who didnt get one. We will try to make amends for that somehow.
We also announced our next game during GDC! For those who missed it, check out Scrolls.com for additional information. And don't forget to sign up as alpha tester if you wish to be abused by Mojang bugs in a whole new game! Scrolls is a big step away from Minecraft, but never the less a game we really want to make and play. The turn-based strategy genre has been riding in the back seat for way to long and it is time to have it returned to its former glory, damn it!
There has been a lot of questions on how and when we will release Scrolls, so let me take a moment to answer some FAQ’s. We have not currently set a date for Scrolls, but the general plan is to first release it as a closed alpha. This is to test our systems and the game balance. To get into this closed alpha you can, as I mentioned earlier, sign up at Scrolls.com. We have also said that we will offer the early adopters of Minecraft a slot in the Scrolls alpha if they want one. This has been interpreted as “all Minecraft alpha customers.” Unfortunately this is not possible as there are over 700,000 Minecraft alpha accounts.
Basically, the best way to get in the closed alpha is to sign up for it. Also, we will be adding users to the closed alpha as we go, so even if you are not in the first batch of randomly selected gamers, it does not mean you will not get in. As the closed alpha comes to an end, we will move over to an open beta that will work much like Minecraft does at the moment. Meaning reduced prices and ongoing development. This will play nicely into our philosophy of “game development as a service” and hopefully many of you will want to be in on the ride.
As we are now finally back at the office, Minecraft development has again picked up. We recently released a new patch for Minecraft featuring wolves! As we all know, wolves along with sharks and lasers are the coolest things invented by man, so this will obviously be a big boost for the game. These wolves can also be tamed to defend you as you venture through the dangerous wilderness.
We have also been working hard on making the servers more stable and we are actually making great progress! (I probably jinxed the crap out of that one right there.)
As for upcoming stuff, Notch is working on weather at the moment. Expect snow, rain and thunder in the following week. I am actually looking at it right now and it looks amazing.
That is all I have for now. I promise to not let the next entry linger as badly as this one.
Game Developer, Mojang
www.twitter.com/notch - Markus Persson, Game Developer
www.twitter.com/JahKob - Jakob Porser, Game Developer
www.twitter.com/carlmanneh - Carl Manneh, CEO
www.twitter.com/kappische - Daniel Kaplan, Business Developer
www.twitter.com/jeb_ - Jens Bergensten. Game Developer
www.twitter.com/mollstam - Tobias Möllstam, Front End Developer
www.twitter.com/jnkboy - Markus Toivonen, Graphical Artist
www.twitter.com/danfrisk - Daniel Frisk, Back End Developer