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Minecraft Dungeons: Everything We Know

January 8, 2020
5 min read

The 2010s have just ended and if we were to start talking about the most influential games of the decade then Mojang’s unlimited sandbox game ‘Minecraft’ would certainly deserve a decent shoutout. The game initially came out in late 2011 for PC and has since gone on to cement its place in the annals of gaming history as one of the greats, selling a mind-boggling 180 million copies to become the best selling video game of all time.

Besides its immense commercial and critical success, ‘Minecraft’ has also made its mark on the modern gaming culture, spawning multiple new genres including the incredibly popular battle royale genre of video games that includes ‘PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds’ and ‘Fortnite’. However, it is now ‘Minecraft’s’ turn to expand beyond its own genre into something else, which is exactly what the upcoming game titled ‘Minecraft Dungeons’ appears to do. Read on to find out everything we know about the newest spin-off in the burgeoning ‘Minecraft’ franchise of video games.

Minecraft Dungeons Gameplay: What to Expect?

The original ‘Minecraft’ is a pure 3D sandbox game presented from a swappable first-person/third-person perspective. ‘Minecraft’ has no quests, no dialogue, no narrative, and no specific goal to accomplish. Players are afforded complete freedom in how they wish to play the game, with the only objectives being what you set for yourself.

Set in a vast procedurally generated open world, ‘Minecraft’ puts a lot of emphasis on exploration, discovery, and creativity. One of the more striking aspects of ‘Minecraft’ is its unique aesthetic. Given the near-infinite scope of the game, ‘Minecraft’ was always going to be a graphically simplistic game. However, Mojang managed to turn that limitation into a genuine advantage, with the fully 3D blocky pixel aesthetic now nearly as iconic as the game itself.

‘Minecraft’ has four distinct game modes starting with the standard survival mode, where you must gather natural resources, craft weapons and shelter, and battle monsters. However, the real draw of ‘Minecraft’ has always been the creative mode, which affords the players unlimited resources and movement ability, to forge their own unique creations.

‘Minecraft’ players have fashioned some truly stunning worlds over the years, including a full authentic recreation of King’s Landing from ‘Game of Thrones’, Columbia from ‘BioShock Infinite’ and even The Shire from Middle-Earth, as we see in ‘The Lord of the Rings‘. The third adventure mode allows players to experience custom maps created by other players. The multiplayer mode of ‘Minecraft’ is just as popular as the creative mode, if not more so. It is truly a multiplayer sandbox, with custom game modes, custom maps, custom servers, mod support, and even local split-screen.

Besides its name, heritage and aesthetic, the upcoming ‘Minecraft Dungeons’ does not have a lot in common with its namesake. The new game is not a sandbox, it is a dungeon-crawling action RPG (Role Playing Game) in the vein of ‘Diablo 3’ presented from a top-down isometric view. The focus is squarely on combat, gathering new loot and character progression.

The webpage for ‘Minecraft Dungeons’ describes the game as follows:
“Fight your way through an all-new action-adventure game, inspired by classic dungeon crawlers and set in the Minecraft universe! Up to four friends can play together, or you can brave the dungeons alone. Battle new-and-nasty mobs across action-packed, treasure-stuffed, wildly varied levels, all in an epic quest to defeat the evil Arch-Illager!”

The plotline of ‘Minecraft Dungeons’ involves the player character’s struggle against the evil Arch-Illager, who is in possession of an artifact of immense power and plans to use it to exact revenge against the villagers who shunned him. In Mojang’s own words, the story in ‘Minecraft Dungeons’ is a simplistic affair with a much greater focus on combat and player progression. The game’s executive producer David Nisshagen said, “You have a chain of objectives you want to accomplish, [but] it’s not like we have a massive narrative that you go through”.

The combat in ‘Minecraft Dungeons’ will involve both melees and ranged attacks with a variety of weapons including swords, hammers, axes, bows, etc. Special items known as artifacts can be equipped to gain special abilities. The levels will be procedurally generated and populated by mobs of familiar ‘Minecraft’ creatures including creepers, zombies, spiders, skeletons and the all-new Necromancer.

‘Minecraft Dungeons’ will feature fully drop-in, drop-out multiplayer options with up to four players at any given time. There will also be a crossplay option between PC and Xbox One players, meaning players on those two separate platforms will be able to team up with each other.

Minecraft Dungeons Developers: Who Are the People Behind the Game?

‘Minecraft Dungeons’ is being developed by Stockholm based Swedish video game developer Mojang and published by Xbox Game Studios. The studio was founded by Markus “Notch” Persson in 2009.

Mojang is best known for games such as ‘Minecraft’, ‘Crown and Council’ and ‘Caller’s Bane’.

Minecraft Dungeons Release Date: When and Where Can I Play It?

‘Minecraft Dungeons’ is set to release in April 2020. The game will be available to play on a number of platforms including Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Microsoft Windows and MacOS.

Minecraft Dungeons Trailer:

You can watch the trailer for ‘Minecraft Dungeons’ right here.

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