The Vatican's Minecraft server is overwhelmed by demand and DDoS attacks

(Image credit: Microsoft)

Update: Unfortunately, and maybe unsuprisingly, the Vatican's effort to create a less toxic environment for Minecraft players is not getting off to the best possible start. After word of the server got out, it quickly fell victim to a DDoS attack:

That's not the only problem, however, as Ballecer said in followup tweets that the Vatican setup was just a test server, and when the story went out—and particularly after it was picked up by larger outlets—the demand skyrocketed. There's currently no time frame for getting everything straightened out but they're working on it, and Ballecer said the test server will become the whitelist server once everything is switched over.

And in case there was doubt, the Holy See isn't putting up with any shenanigans.

The original story is below:

In September Father Robert Ballecer, a former tech blogger and host of The Week in Tech as well as a Catholic priest, asked his 23,000 Twitter followers which game he should "spin up a few servers for" in the Vatican. Given the options of Minecraft, RUST, Ark, and Team Fortress 2, 64% of them voted for the classic crafting game. And that's why the Vatican now has its own Minecraft server.

The idea is to create a place for "gamers who want a little less 'toxic' and a bit more community", and as Ballecer told Rome Reports, "You can invite people who want to be creative, who don't want to be toxic, and you create an environment in which people can express themselves and build up a relationship. And the relationship thing is the most important part. That's ultimately what I want to do with the server."

It's open now, and you can point your client at to test it out.


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Jody Macgregor
Weekend/AU Editor

Jody's first computer was a Commodore 64, so he remembers having to use a code wheel to play Pool of Radiance. A former music journalist who interviewed everyone from Giorgio Moroder to Trent Reznor, Jody also co-hosted Australia's first radio show about videogames, Zed Games. He's written for Rock Paper Shotgun, The Big Issue, GamesRadar, Zam, Glixel, Five Out of Ten Magazine, and, whose cheques with the bunny logo made for fun conversations at the bank. Jody's first article for PC Gamer was about the audio of Alien Isolation, published in 2015, and since then he's written about why Silent Hill belongs on PC, why Recettear: An Item Shop's Tale is the best fantasy shopkeeper tycoon game, and how weird Lost Ark can get. Jody edited PC Gamer Indie from 2017 to 2018, and he eventually lived up to his promise to play every Warhammer videogame.