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Tutorial to Building Modern (For Minetorials)


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Level 69 : High Grandmaster Architect
Hi there everyone! This will be just a quick guide/tutorial to making great modern buildings.

Now there are a lot of minecraft buildings out there, and many of them modern. The nature of minecraft makes it perfect for creating nice clean shapes and making great looking modern structures. However, building modern isn't just about throwing some odd shapes together and trying to get a structure to look weird. I will be sharing some of the things I've learned over the past year that I've been building that I feel helped me a lot when building modern.

Introduction & Starting Out

Like I said before, building something modern isn't just about throwing something random together and calling it a day. It really does take a bit of planning and thought in order to make some pleasing to the eye. Now I know what is nice to me may not be nice to you but I think for the most part, if a build looks good, it'll look good to a lot of people. Whenever I start building I always have an idea of what the build will look like. Even if its just extremely rough and I only know what kind of layout I want, its still something. I've tried before where I start building and have no idea what so ever and after an hour I just end up scraping the whole building and starting over.

So where do you get ideas, you may ask. Well we are pretty lucky for modern buildings as there are many examples of good ones out there. In Minecraft and the real world. Just a simple search "modern building" on Planet Minecraft will turn up loads of great builds that you can take ideas from. Now I don't mean you should copy other peoples work, but there is nothing wrong with seeing a house and then creating your own version of it. (With changes of course) The way I build now is that I get a picture of something I want to make and then have it on my phone, next to me when I'm playing. For example, take the latest modern house I am working on. I found a picture on google images with a house that I liked and I put the image on my phone. Then I would refer back to the picture a few times when I am building for the general shape and to see some of the features that I loved. It may be a pillar or a wall. Those features I put into my build and the rest I created myself. You'll end up with a project that you don't need to feel guilty of stealing but at the same time not be building blind.

Here are specific steps to making your project look its best:

Step ONE

Pick your colour - Make sure you are using a colour scheme that complements each other. At the end of the day, your build will look good and pleasing if it has a balanced feel. What I mean by this is that the colours you use balances each other out, there isn't a large, fat area with just a very dark colour and then a tiny thin sliver of white.

For me I usually use one main colour, for example white, and a accent colour, e.g. dark wood. I usually keep the ratio of main and accent colour to around 4:1. This will make your build look interesting and not dull but also not like its really messy.

The orange here makes the building look a lot more interesting than if it was just black.


The small bit of red accenting makes an otherwise pretty plain building more interesting.



Step TWO

Find the shape of your building - Shapes are probably the most important part of the build. Like colour, you should make your shapes complement each other. For example, tall vertical pillars work well if you have a large wall and it seems too empty. Again, like colour, you also want to balance the shapes out. Don't use too many different types of shapes. I would say for modern, stick to straight lines and rectangles at the beginning. Using curves or diagonals can be tricky when starting out and especially when you are not familiar with making clean curves that flow.

Lots of horizontal lines with some straight vertical lines.


Simple cubes stacked up but makes for an interesting building.




Get the materials that you need - There are loads of materials in Minecraft and you can really a lot of them for modern builds. My go to materials are wool. Wool is a great thing to build with as there are so many different types of wool. At first I was hesitant to use wool because it just seemed really odd to be using something from a sheep but you'll soon forget that. I would say personally to stay away from using too much stone. It ends up giving a sort of dark unwelcoming look to a building, but hey, if thats what you are going for then by no means let me stop you. If you want a darker colour I would suggest using a darker coloured wool.

Here are some materials that you may not have thought to use but look great: bricks, stone slabs (as accenting), sandstone, clay, ice (be careful as it will melt if light is placed too close) and lapis (this depends on the texture pack)



Time to start building - There isn't really much to say here other than just build :)



FINISH THE INTERIOR! - I know a lot of you guys don't like making an interior but trust me, this will set your work off. A skyscraper or house will look so much more interesting when you can walk inside and you see theres an interior. There is a lot to talk about here, mainly about furniture, but thats a different topic altogether. When making the interior you should also include whats actually found inside a real building. For example, if you are making a house, you should have: a bathroom, living room, kitchen, eating area and bedroom. I always think that a great building is as lifelike as possible. For me, I tend to lean towards cozy and comfortable for the interior. Usually I will have features like wood fences, wool features, fireplaces, etc. It doesn't really sound like it would fit too well with the modern exterior but it does, trust me. :)

A cozy interior.


Here are some photos of before and after the interior has been done.




Step SIX

Add some landscaping - This is a really easy step. When I say landscaping I don't mean you need to have lots of elevations and trees and gardens, no. A simple large tree or two and some bone meal is enough to make most projects look good. To place a large tree I get my shovel tool, then type "/tree big". Now when I left click with my shovel, it places a big tree. EASY :)

A little landscaping goes a long way.


And that's about all, there isn't really any secrets to it to tricks. Just follow these steps and you should be able to create some very nice (and detailed) modern builds. Hope this helped someone a little :)


Here are some other tips that don't really have a category.

If you are building a skyscraper and need some ideas, I would say look into some newer condo buildings. A good search of "modern/tall condo building" will turn up lots of great results and many of them are completely makable in Minecraft.

Find a good texture pack. The default texture pack really doesn't work too well for making modern builds. Many realistic/industrial textures look very lifelike and are great for making these buildings. (I personally like Misa 64 and Soartex Fanver)

Comments : 16

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1 - 16 of 16

  • Tonybo
  • Level 6
  • Apprentice Architect
  • December 3, 2016, 3:00 pm
Flows HD is the best in my opinion. Also, can you do a tutorial on a police station?
  • XXxYusukexXX
  • Level 13
  • Journeyman Architect
  • May 4, 2014, 2:41 am
Great Tutorial Man Thanks!
  • lauren121902
  • Level 28
  • Expert Dolphin
  • December 4, 2013, 5:33 pm
I love interior but can't build outsides xD
Thank You!
  • CrespoChimp
  • Level 64
  • High Grandmaster Pyro
  • October 5, 2012, 1:44 pm
Thanks for the great tutorial. :)
  • jovco111
  • Level 11
  • Journeyman Architect
  • July 19, 2012, 12:01 am
Hey there, nice tutorial!! I've uploaded my first building here: http://www.planetminecraft.com/project/modern-house-soartex-fanver-study/

Please give your opinion and tips!!

I give you an diamond!
  • Antonove
  • Level 69
  • High Grandmaster Architect
  • July 19, 2012, 5:01 pm
Thanks! Overall I would say its a really nice house, good window shapes going around and roof. I especially like the sandstone half slab feature on the back of the house. Only thing I would say to change it a little is maybe make the interior a bit more fancy. Like play with some furniture designs and make some features inside. :)
  • D2theShizzle
  • Level 20
  • Expert Architect
  • July 15, 2012, 12:41 pm
Although I am a very experienced builder, this was indeed very interesting and informative to read. Great job, I think you deserve a spot in the winners :)
how do you place trees like you do? do u need a mod or anything to type /tree big.
  • Antonove
  • Level 69
  • High Grandmaster Architect
  • July 14, 2012, 5:37 am
oh yea, you need single player commands to do that. Or you could also do it this way: so basically get some bedrock and place 3 blocks of bedrock around one block. So 3 sides of a block are surround. The make the bedrock around 7-8 blocks high. Place a sapling in the surround block and then bone meal it. Usually you will spawn a large tree after a few tries but small ones sometimes spawn as well making it a bit cumbersome.
  • Mymagic12
  • Level 50
  • Grandmaster Ladybug
  • July 13, 2012, 6:32 pm
Brilliant! I think you deserve a place in the winning for at least the level of skill. I've always wanted to live in a house like this. A 2 way fireplace, a aquarium wall, all amazing fixtures simply amazing.

I love interior design in my houses, but now, i can do even better thanks to you. :D

Not to mention the outside will be definitely better! No more Victorian outside and modern inside ^-^

Oh and of course, you have to tell me what that detailed texturepack is! :O
  • Antonove
  • Level 69
  • High Grandmaster Architect
  • July 14, 2012, 5:38 am
Thanks! I am currently using the Soartex fanver texture pack but also like Misa. The two are pretty much interchangeable. Misa has more of a dark and heavy feel too it and soartex is more light.
  • Penap
  • Level 41
  • Master Engineer
  • July 13, 2012, 12:34 pm
  • ObbyCow77
  • Level 34
  • Artisan Lava Rider
  • July 12, 2012, 4:57 pm
Hey, I was the one who recommened doing this. I made a modern home from real life and I thought it turned out pretty well, here's dah link:
Great tutorial! It's quite a bit of reading, but it's worth it! :D
I usally just copy real life modern homes, its very fun replicating things

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