Minecraft for Parents is for anyone who needs to learn the basis of Minecraft – quick. Minecraft is huge and kids (and some adults) LOVE it! It is a computer program that in Creative Mode be considered to be a modern equivalent of Lego – with construction and building concepts. However, there is far more to it than that in other modes with the game enabling mining and exploration and scavenging for resources. Outlined below are is our guide to minecraft for parents and details what you need to do on Day 1.
Single or multi player – You can play Minecraft either as a stand alone game on your pc, ipad etc or you can play online with other people. If you are intending to play online then the usual safety protocols should be employed (ie never using and giving out real names, locations etc).
Survival Mode vs Creative Mode – The two main modes are Survival mode, where you have to source your own food and fight mobs (monsters) and Creative mode, where you can build to your hearts desire without having to worry about food, mobs and obtaining resources. In creative mode you can just build whatever you want and create to your hearts content. Creative mode is better for small kids as there are no monsters and there is no day / night.
Wiki site – Minecraft is so popular it has its own wiki site – It is really useful for finding out how to do the things you cant work out yourself.
Night and Day – Survival mode has days and nights with a minecraft day lasting about 10 mins, and night (including dawn and dusk) another 10 mins. Creative mode only has day time. As creative mode is quite simple to use we have concentrated on Survival mode for this list. In survival mode monsters come out at night and the only way not to be killed is to have a lit shelter (ie: a shelter with lights in it).
Collecting Resources – In order to build a shelter you need resources. Blocks of resources (eg wood, cobblestone etc) can be collected and then used to craft (make) other items. For example, a block of wood can be converted into planks and then sticks. Sticks when crafted with coal make torches.
Crafting Table – Make a crafting table. Collect some wood (any type of wood will do) to make the crafting table. This enables you to make a wider range of items including your first set of tools. Later on you can use it to make a furnace to cook with.
Crafting different items – The combination and placement of resources within the crafting table determines what tools / items you craft. For example, two sticks and three pieces of cobblestone can make an axe or pick axe depending on the placement. Practice makes perfect.
Accumulate as you explore – Collect any stray items you come across while you’re exploring and gathering basic items, as many of them will be useful later including bones, arrows, seeds.
Torches – Getting Charcoal or coal is important as it enables you to make torches. Torches are a fundamental tool of the game and enable you to light your shelter and go mining for resources. Charcoal or coal can also be used with a furnace to make glass, cook meat and refine iron, gold and other ores.
Temporary home – The easiest shelter to build on day one or if you are exploring is a small cave in the side of a hill. You can then use your torches to light the shelter. Leave enough space to see when its daylight but not enough that monsters can get in.
Bed – A bed is a very useful tool in Minecraft. To craft a bed you need three pieces of wool and three pieces of wood. Crafting a bed means that you can skip the night and avoid the monsters but you need to get in before dark. Sleeping in a bed also moves your regeneration point if you die from your original starting point to the last place you slept.
Avoid monsters until you are ready – If you are a beginner its best to try and avoid the monsters until you are set up and have some resources (eg sword and armour). There are different types of monsters including zombies, skeletons and creepers as well as friendly mobs such as cows, pigs and sheep.
Permanent Home – After the first night you will have more time to build a permanent home from which you can explore the world of Minecraft. A simple yet solid home can be constructed using Cobblestone with a wooden door. Building a tall identifying landmark is useful so you can find your way back to your home when exploring.
Chests – Craft a chest from some wooden planks to store all of the items you have collected. This is a great way to retain your resources in case you die when exploring.
Farming – You can grow your own food (wheat, carrots potatoes) as well as create your own farm with pigs, cows, chickens and sheep. This will provide hours of fun and also provide an endless supply of resources (wool, milk, eggs). To grow your herd or flock you need to feed the animals the right food to generate love hearts.
Mining – mining is a great way to find more resources including iron, gold, diamonds and redstone. These can be used to make better tools and items such as a compass, maps and clocks. Make sure you take sufficient supplies with you when you go mining.
Advanced crafting – As you get deeper into the game there are more complex tools and items to craft including minecarts, tracks, and circuits to power devices such as powered mine rails and iron doors. This level of complexity is aimed at older children as it can be quite complex.
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