How to make more of what games offer

How to make more of what games offer

Minecraft is a game that almost everyone knows.

With it being the most purchased game in history with two-hundred thirty-eight million copies sold, you can expect it to have a large community of people who play the game. With a large community comes sub-communities; some examples would be those who like survival versus creative or playing multiplayer versus single player.

Minecraft has a massive modding community. It’s a conglomerate of people who liked Minecraft yet yearned for more from their blocky masterpiece. They mod, shorthand for modify, the game with tweaks and improvements, quality of life additions, and entirely new content. 

This goes even further with some people playing on older versions of the game, as it constantly gets updated with sixteen current major updates. You might wonder why people would prefer to have the older version of the game, but I fully get it. In this case, less is currently more.

Minecraft can be played on each of its released updates. Some people like the new content so they don’t need to add in mods, but some people like mods more than the new content and play older versions that are modded. 

Now, why not have both the new content and the mods? Well, that issue lies with how you actually run mods. It’s not as simple as just saying hocus pocus and they will load into the game; rather; they need a mod launcher such as Forge.

Okay, we have the launcher for the most recent version, now we can play mods on the newest version too, right? Well, no. The mods for the game are designed for specific versions. Minecraft’s current version is 1.17, but, to be more specific, it’s version 1.17.1. The small changes made between updates could break mods entirely.

To take the concept further, do you want to use the forge launcher or the fabric launcher? There are launcher-specific mods too. Is your version of forge up to date and compatible with the mods even if they are both for version 1.12.2? In short, modding is harder than I feel it should be.

Mods might add to and change the state of the game, but the real question is why do people play mods, especially with all the hassle behind them? The reason behind mod creation is simple, really. People thought ‘Huh, this game needs something more, and I know what it is.’ The reason behind playing mods follows the same suit.

Mods are often used to change the game when people get bored of the base. Don’t like the blocks in the game? Just get more through mods. Don’t like the enemy variety? Mods cover that with ease. Don’t like the biomes of anything in the world? You know what it is: mods.

Of course, Minecraft isn’t the only game with a modding community. So many single-player-oriented games have that scene. Terraria, another sandbox game, has incredible mods that change the game without changing the core of it. Skyrim, a single-player RPG, has mods that add more characters to talk to, weapons, and storylines. 

In short, modding is harder than I feel it should be.”

Mods aren’t just good for giving a game some new spice; they make the meal anew. Think of it like this: when you add new flavors to food, it changes it and gives you a new way to enjoy the same, and possibly bland, food. Mods do the same.

The power of modding extends a game’s lifespan. How many hours can you spend doing the same thing before getting bored? Maybe one hundred if you’re lucky. But look at me, with about fifteen hundred hours in Terraria, three times more than if I never played the game modded.

Games are always being pushed forwards to new ideas, and with how mainstream gaming is today, games are more and more likely to die after a year or two. But looking at it, Minecraft being over ten years old, and Terraria is up there too. 

Modding makes games that are already good into ones that transcend what the developers intend to work for the people. The scene has kept the game’s communities alive and active, despite the repetition of the main games running them dry of fun. That is what keeps these games alive.