Thursday, May 31, 2012

Minecraft - Infrastructure

Digging a lot of holes in the ground, that's what it's been. I've been working on getting Minecraft infrastructure in place to support building operations, and things are proceeding nicely. If you recall I set some rules for building and goals to achieve when I started this build. I've made some progress on this and refined rule three, here are the results.

First the rule refinement. Originally I said all structures must include at least one non-flat surface. I'm refining that a bit, to no rectangular cuboid structures. A rectangular cuboid, for the geometry challenged, is a solid with six rectangular faces. Most boxes are rectangular cuboids. Of course that rule applies to surface structures. The Morlock mines are full of rectangular cuboids.

Next some progress. I started off securing a food source, a wheat farm. If you read any of my previous build the basic structure is the same, just underground. Another thing I'm trying to do this build is make liberal use of signs. Given the scale of the surface structures (a ground to skybox building for example), there are going to be some pretty extensive tunnels and passages beneath the surface. I don't want to get lost!

I've also started building out the tree farms, and two of four are now complete (the four varieties required are regular hardwood, pine, birch, and jungle), though actual production is slow thus far. Birch, in particular is slow to get started because the average number of saplings dropped per tree is pretty low.
Tree farm - starting up
Tree farm - in action
Digging out those tree farms produced a nice supply of stone to get a few projects started. I've staked out the area I'll be using for the park, and started the central stair for the sky tower. They're not really much to look at right now, but they're a start. Let's see, what else is done? Oh, yeah, the mine to bedrock task is officially complete. I posted up a picture of my base in my last post, and it's effectively the top of the mine shaft, a spiral stair leading straight to bedrock. The wheat and tree farms are built off this central shaft, as is the turf research center, which is a tunnel to the surface that allows me to bring grass underground.
Turf facility on the surface

For those that don't play Minecraft, grass blocks are generated on the surface and grass spreads from grass blocks to neighboring exposed earth blocks. To get grass underground you have to give it a path to follow.

The best thing about the turf facility was it lead me to the discovery of an abandoned mine near my build site. Abandoned mines are a rich source of materials, wood, fence, rail tracks, poisonous spiders... well we could do without the poisonous spiders. I've started securing this area and stripping it bare. I've also discovered two monster spawners in there that should serve as a nice source of food for my required monster trap.
The bottom of the mine
But back to my own mine shaft for a minute. I've started digging out a grid of tunnels at the bedrock level for materials. I've already found lots of red stone, and a few nice sized diamond veins. As you can see from the picture above, the bedrock level is *dark*. The darkness feature is not my favorite, but I need diamonds, gold and such, so I'll live with it. Using Minutor, you can see underground progress more clearly.
Minutor maps
The left side of the Minutor image is at level 4, just above the bedrock. You can see how the mine has sprawled out (and the vast number of torches needed to keep it lit). The right side of the image shows the arboretums, wheat farm, turf tunnel, and the passage to the stronghold, some of which is visible.

That's about it for now. I'm planning on taking a break from Minecraft and doing some work on my Island Forge island, work that was interrupted by the Torchlight 2 beta weekend.

Happy gaming!

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