Virtual Worlds

The appeal of Mincraft and virtual worlds.

Posted by dbunker on July 11, 2011

Minecraft is becoming increasingly popular and has a growing community of modders, let’s players and builders collaborating on Minecraft as a platform. There are many players filling out entire fictional universes as can be seen on Game of Thrones Minecraft servers.

Despite this being a virtual world, players still rely on constraints to define it similarly to how constraints are relied upon in the physical world. Though like when developing any program, the constraints in a virtual world are maleable. Modding is particularly interesting because these constraints can be built up then broken down and built up again in a different direction to do what no one would have thought possible because they were impossible according to the previous assumptions. Designing such things is intriguing because it offers freedom to develop and explore a world which follows any set of rules.

This thrill of creation is the main driving force of Minecraft, Dwarf Fortress, World of Warcraft, and other virtual worlds. People get the same dopamine hits from the act of creation whether it’s virtual, mental, or solid. Virtual worlds are considered by many to be the next digital frontier and it will be interesting to see new creation in such new virtual worlds particularly as in world AI becomes more advanced and interactive.