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Why Minecraft Updates Have Turned Me Away. - Aquatic Update

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avatar Jnaejnae
Level 78 : Legendary Jarl
I've always considered Minecraft a good game. It hit that creative spot in me with it’s expansive sandbox possibilities. In general I really like the new content being added to Minecraft, prevents it from getting stale. However there is one thing that Minecraft updates consistently do that makes me increasingly distant ; the updates are destroying challenge.

Every major update adds features that makes the game easier, while rarely adding any challenge to counter balance it.

One notable example is hunger. They continuously add methods of getting food. Does sheep and rabbit dropping meat make sense? Yes. Does it also make it nearly twice as easy to get meat? Yes. Now they are adding edible kelp, and you can kill fish without fishing rods. Starving is essentially impossible. Minecraft is failing at being a survival game. Not once have they made surviving hunger more difficult.

More examples are sprinting, beds, shields, totem of undying, elytra, and tridents. These all make mob combat much less threatening and intense. Mobs like Skeletons are now just a chore, considering you can block 100% of their damage with a shield, sprint up to them, then 2 shot them with a stone axe. I do truly enjoy the few times Minecraft adds new mid-bosses like Elder Guardians and Evokers, however they are rare, so it doesn’t excuse the now redundant standard mobs. Now with the Phantom mob I will be punished for not sleeping, but I never sleep because it feels like a cheap way to avoid the danger of the night, which is one of the core attractions of Minecraft.

Essentially Minecraft is becoming gradually baby-proof. Currently the only times I die in hard mode is being knocked off a cliff or knocked into lava. Neither combat nor survival are difficult. The new recipe book also makes crafting an ease, and I’m not even against the idea of recipe books because Minecraft needed some way to learn the game without the wiki, however the quick crafting took it a bit too far, as it makes shaped recipes completely redundant.

I don’t want to always stick with Alpha, because again, I actually really do like more content. I don’t always want to stick with mods / self-inflicted challenges, because as long as Vanilla Minecraft is easy, the quality and longevity of the community will falter. I want Minecraft, a one of a kind game, to reintroduce real challenge for everyone to experience.

As an experienced player, I no longer feel joy in playing Minecraft because there isn’t enough challenge to remain satisfying. I’m not saying Minecraft is a bad game, but it’s a good game plagued by lack of a balanced skill curve. I haven't played a survival game in the latest version of Minecraft for quite a while, and it leaves a box shaped hole in my heart.

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  • Noah1__
  • Level 3
  • Apprentice Artist
  • October 22, 2018, 2:34 pm
I agree with all you said except that I think sprinting should not be removed but I do agree that there should be a fast hostile mob. I am also in your shoes, I have been playing for five years and I agree that it is getting easier. Though kelp has the least food points in the game. If you read this I also like your texture packs.
  • Jnaejnae
  • Level 78
  • Legendary Jarl
  • October 23, 2018, 2:42 am
Yes I agree, Sprinting does not need to be removed, but it certainly needs something to counter it. A mob that can sprint after the player is one good option, another good balance option is adding a mob or mob behavior that prevents the player from sprinting temporarily. Maybe spiders could have a chance to spit a blinding projectile. I don't think shields need to be removed, but to be balanced we at least need 2 things 1) A hostile mob that can use a shield. 2) A hostile mob that has an attack that bypasses shields.

Minecraft is getting easier, and we are also getting better, so this generates a very unhealthy learning curve that can get boring too quickly.

Also I appreciate that you like my texture packs.
What really turned me away was both the abysmal and oversaturating updates, as well as the community.
*Lattie shudders
It seems like there's even less of quality control on both and a lot of servers are starting to die. New ones come in their place but they're no longer inspired. I've also learned that some servers I've staffed on had very dark things going on behind the scenes, so that was a real kick to the gut.
  • Bastion1540
  • Level 45
  • Master Technomancer
  • March 2, 2018, 10:10 pm
although I always play on hard, all what matters for me is having fun in all aspects of the game, not just the surviving aspect
  • conflicttFTW
  • Level 39
  • Artisan Sweetheart
  • March 1, 2018, 3:49 pm
Beds have been in forever and playing without sprinting is excrutiating because its like limping around constantly.

Every time an update comes out people freak out "oh god minecraft is ruined boo hoo im quitting" then the next update rolls around and they say the same thing. "oh no terracotta ruins the game it looks uglyyyyyy" like the ground is made of it naturally or something.

You dont hate minecraft because of anything Minecraft is doing. Its because you have played so long the game isnt hard for you to manage at all. I have the same issue. Instead of griping about new content, go play some hardcore modpacks. They fix most of the issues with more dungeons, harder mobs, and more tiered progression.
  • Jnaejnae
  • Level 78
  • Legendary Jarl
  • March 27, 2018, 6:14 pm
I was never angry about terracotta blocks. I only gripe with changes that negatively impact the balance of the game, for instance kelp is too easily obtainable as a sustainable food source making Minecraft a less intriguing survival game. It would at first seem like I simply gotten better, but going back and playing alpha proves that it's actually Minecraft that is getting easier. The reason I dont always play Alpha, is because it doesn't have enough features to maintain my interest for very long.

I'm not advocating for the removal of sprint, but it is undeniable that sprint drains a lot of the tension and danger from the game. This could be fixed a number of ways, one could be adding a common hostile mob that can counter people who run away. It could do this by either being able to sprint itself, or inflicting some effect that prevents the player from sprinting away. Enderman comes close at this but because of his height and water weakness they are still incredibly easy to stay out of reach from.

Mods would be a solution to my problems, but alas one issue is really bad mod compatibility. Minecraft never delivered on their official modding api promise, as a result every mod is outdated every update. Another issue is the fact that these issues effect almost everyone else, and I don't want to just selfishly fix the game's balance for me alone. If Minecraft wasn't styrofoaming their game, the community would be of higher quality because the playerbase would consist of more patient and capable people.

I understand why you would stereotype me with "fans" who whine about every little change. However due to this you are blinding yourself to the real problems regarding the game's balance and difficulty curve.
  • conflicttFTW
  • Level 39
  • Artisan Sweetheart
  • March 28, 2018, 5:36 am
I dont want to slot you into some category, I was just using the worst as an example. In the end, even if stuff goes outdated (mods mainly) every update, a lot of Mod Devs are working together to pull the main stuff into the newest release within a few weeks at most.

Its a nuanced issue, different people have different takes on it.

As for sprint and kelp, both have a similar drawback: Hunger cost. Sprint is obvious, making it so you need hunger to regen, and tying hunger to the ability to sprint and making it drain hunger gives a limit, even if you have food you have to stop to eat which can be deadly. Kelp is less immediate or direct, but trying to swim for food, especially one thats so low-tier, wont be worth it really more most early game players. Once you have water breathing its fine, but until then, your apt to take a lot of damage on accident in the water drowning, which will make you eat more food to compensate anyway. it will be more annoying that its worth really.

I do think mobs need to be able to sprint at players though in normal and hard difficulty, with their own stamina limits lower than players. It would be a nice layer to things, having creepers sprint (only when not light, so they wont charge and boom instantly, they slow down when they start to go off), endermen dont need it they fast, zombies for sure need it though. Skeletons id say no cause they try to stay at range anyway, and their aim already got buffed a few updates back.

More dynamic mechanics based on difficulty mainly is something I would like, as I said sprinting and mob health regen even in Hard mode would be nice as long as its not too high.
  • Xoyjaz
  • Level 63
  • High Grandmaster Architect
  • March 28, 2018, 2:57 am
No doubt, I agree with parts of what you are saying. Sadly I think its just a waiting game.
They used 8 years to add some nice ocean stuff into the game, people been waiting for so long. Even for builders there are still things they wish was in the game, so they gravitate towards mods to help them support their needs.

As for the survival aspect I do wish they could maybe add yet another difficulty. Hardcore doesnt count, they should just make one over hard. Or just add some upgrades to the difficulties that already are. But this pattern is present in many other games. Say for instance POKEMON games, we are cruising through them these days how easy they are. I dont know how hard it is to add such feature where things can become harder, but if time is money and its really something that the game developers dont feel is needed then I guess they wont do anything about it.

If you gather maybe a group of people and make your voice heard, maybe Mojang can take it into account :)
Until then, mods are the only way to make this game hard anymore.
They make the mobs easy but the stuff you have to do (like mining for diamonds) tedious. It's why I don't play survival anymore.
Also remember that food was originally a health potion - no matter how many new food sources they add, hunger will always be harder than that. And a lot of people complained when there was no mutton.
  • Xoyjaz
  • Level 63
  • High Grandmaster Architect
  • February 28, 2018, 8:15 am
I read through this blog twice in detail as well as I visited your profile just to get insight what appreciate more and maybe get an idea where this post is coming from.
Clearly you enjoy the game a lot, enough to write this blog about it. Here is my take on it and please tell me what you think:

First off, I think the solution to all your problems here would be if Minecraft added another difficulty that would increase the difficulty on a lot of things here. With that being said lets go away from what you (and surely many more people) seem to dislike about the updates and change focus on why they do this.
The updates they make doesn't only affect the survival aspect, but it also opens to a lot of possibilities for the creative aspect and mini game aspect. Not everything they make can cater to all. We have to understand that this it not only a survival game anymore. The creators are totally aware of the community that can easily modify and make other things on top of what they do. They are not concerned with satisfying everyone, the community can do that. They only focus to push some ideas forward to keep the game interesseting enough and give these new features possibilities to blossom into other things as well.

And yes I do agree with critiquing the developers for missing sometimes. That will always happen, they miss sometimes and they hit as well. For any wish you want this game to be, the community and a good PC can provide you with that. As the wish for everything to deliver as a vanilla game that might be hard. I am not here to change your mind or anything, I am just letting you know even though you letting it go, dont think what they are doing is damaging things enough to the point that this isn`t possible.

I am just picturing this in a bigger scale not your points specifically. Older Minecraft versions are always available, you are also able to not use the new items. I understand what you mean and where you are coming from, but I am just glad they doing something new always. And hoping they continue.
  • Jnaejnae
  • Level 78
  • Legendary Jarl
  • March 27, 2018, 5:55 pm
Understandable that Minecraft cannot cater to all playstyles with relative effectiveness, however Survival is the core gamemode and there is no excuse for how unbalanced it is currently. I don't go and play older versions, because I like the new features. Shields would be awesome if they weren't overpowered. Kelp would be a great addition if they weren't a cheap way to get food. The reason this was a difficult situation is because I do want to relish in new features.

Because Minecraft isn't a competitive game, people underestimate how much balance still matters. It's hard to notice how ridiculously powerful shields are, because the skeletons won't complain when they can't deal damage to you, and when you absorb all the damage from a creeper blast most people dont think "I would rather blow up easier." This results in the game having a bad difficulty curve. A simple balance to shields would be tiers, for example wooden shields absorb 20% damage, stone 40%, iron 60%, and diamond 80%. Then add some shield enchantments so you can get 100% damage reduction with an enchanted diamond shield. Meanwhile the current shields cost 1 iron and absorb 100% damage, which would be equivalent to an iron shovel being faster and more durable than a diamond enchanted shovel.

I was tempted of course to make a mod to address my concerns, however this game is plagued with awful mod compatibility and I would be forced to port my mod every update for it to remain relevant. Wasn't worth the work. If Minecraft delivered the official modding API like they promised years ago, the community would be in a much better place than it is now.

I'm not even a person who is limited in playstyle. As you have seen my profile, you know I used to build in creative, make texture packs, and even create some of my own minigames. This part of my likes the changes to commands for example.
  • JozyP
  • Level 39
  • Artisan Pixel Painter
  • February 28, 2018, 6:26 am
I actually disagree with your pointe about hunger; pigs, chickens, and cows have always been more prevalent than mobs such as sheep and especially rabbits, at least when I have played. Mutton has been a side snack, while I usually find pork and beef more easily. The usefulness of sheep wool make them more useful to sheer and does not prioritize mutton at all. Secondly, items like the Elytra or the Totem of Undying are incredibly useful but they are relatively difficult to acquire. Both require a lot of time to find and are usually hidden in locations filled with mobs. Shield is a weird one because of how easily it is obtained and how useful it is.
I must say that Mojang hasn't forgotten any of it's players though. You can easily play older versions of the game dating back to indev, and modding is easy for versions like 1.6 etc. There is no reason to leave Minecraft if you still enjoy the game, just don't play the new stuff. I personally almost never play past 1.8.
cool story bro

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