So, if I’m back blogging here, I must be Minecrafting, right? Well, not necessarily, but as it turns out, I am – thanks to both Kristal, and my friend Meles…
A little while ago, Meles invited both Kristal and me to join his private server, Krash Palisades. I thanked him for the offer, but politely declined on the grounds that I wasn’t playing the game any longer. Meles was fine about it, adding that he figured I probably would say no (because of those reasons), but it didn’t hurt to ask. True enough!
Kristal accepted, however, and it gave her an excellent location from which to record her Let’s Play series, Return To Vanilla. The more I watched of her series, the more I missed both playing Minecraft, and playing alongside Kristal. I’d been checking out other games in the meantime, such as Skyrim and Fallout 3, but it just wasn’t the same as co-op with Kristal; not simply because of us being in a relationship, but also due to the fact that we work very well together as a team. But I didn’t feel that I wanted to come back to Minecraft.
And then it happened: During one of Kristal’s episodes, all she did was find diamond… and I got that wonderful little frisson of delight, as if I had found the thing myself. It was at that moment that I knew I had to get back into playing again! So, I politely asked Meles if he was still willing to have me on Krash Palisades, and he very kindly said yes – and Kristal got the shock of her life when she found me on there!
Then, there was a surprise for me: Kristal didn’t want me to share a house with her, as we’ve done ever since playing on Pete’s Sanctuary server. But, as usual, Kristal’s reasoning was solid1: if I was living there, and doing things off-camera, it would seriously screw up the continuity for her series. So, I’ve got a base2 of my own, though we do still play and adventure together
My humble little base on Krash Palisades.
In amongst establishing myself on the server, I did end up joining Kristal for a rather large undertaking: making the spawn area safe! One of my own hallmarks in this is my OCD-level lighting: every fourth block in the area has a torch planted upon it. Admittedly, a more natural, haphazard lighting method does look nicer than a regimented grid of torches, but at least this way, I don’t have to run around like a lunatic, with F3 on to check block lighting on every single damn square…
Kristal (with help from Wedgehog and me, as far as I recall) tore up the whole of spawn, enlarging it, and making it both prettier and more practical:
- There’s now a hostel, mined into a tall hill, which contains both beds and storage for essentials – handy for new inductees to Meles’ whitelist;
- The various types of farms were moved to the rear area of spawn, out by the skeleton-spawner XP farm, so it’s all together in one place;
- Kristal added The Blocke Shoppe, for all your blocky needs (so long as you’ve got the wherewithal to pay for it);
- And she has a second business out at spawn: The Mustang Ranch – which actually isn’t a ranch so much as a large stable, from which she sells horses, donkeys and mules.
Kristal’s hostel – an ideal place for new residents to start out with supplies.
The new spawn farms, with the skeleton XP farm entrance in the bottom-left corner.
Need materials? Got the diamonds? Then you need to visit Kristal’s Blocke Shoppe!
And before I get into what I’ve been doing on my little homestead, I just want to say that I absolutely adore the equine additions to Minecraft! They’re so cute and sweet, and they make getting around so much easier! But then, those of you who continued to play Minecraft in the latter half of 2013 know that already Thank you so much to both Mojang and Dr Zhark for collaborating to make them a reality!
Kristal’s Mustang Ranch, formerly Kristal’s Classy Donkey Chassis – sure, you could catch and tame your own horse, but these are bred for high stats!
So, given that it was incumbent on me to find a place of my own to settle down and breed (animals), I took a walk out from spawn to see if there was a nice, spacious area to work with. And I got very lucky, because there was a gorgeous location, only a few hundred blocks out! A vast sea on the northern side; a good, hilly area to the west; and a decent amount of space to the east for building and farming – perfect. When Kristal saw my place, a little while after getting started, she said that I “always pick such pretty places to build”, which I thought was very sweet of her
As I was setting down roots, I made a nice discovery: there was a small canyon, a few blocks to the south-west, which I figured would serve very nicely as my mining area. And when I got to actually do some mining, I made an even better discovery: my very own skeleton spawner! I’m still trying to make the thing into a proper XP farm, like the one at spawn, but I need to put a lot more effort into it…
Everyone on KP has their own Nether portal, for making transport much faster. I decided that I wouldn’t have mine too close to my main building, because I can’t stand the bloody noise of the thing – and it also means I don’t get up-close-and-personal with zombie pigmen. So I built a little pier out into the bay, and placed it there. But then there was a couple of small sand-spits alongside, from which I would fish, although fishing at night led to interruptions from mobs bobbing across the water towards me. The result was that I extended the pier off to the side, and built a big fishing shack, complete with chests surrounded by packed ice (one for drinks, one for the fish) – so now my friends and I can hang out in Skype, while we all fish in safety! (And fishing is much less boring, this way!)
My fishing shack, next to my Nether portal. The shack’s ideally located for fishing at any time of day.
Inside my fishing shack – equipped with everything you need for fishing to your heart’s content.
The actual “house” part is still very small and boxy, and the basement isn’t even half-full with chests. But it does what I want it to do, though I’d like to come up with a better design than a wooden box! My animals – Beauty the horse, Lula the donkey, and Misha II and Dottie the mules – have a larger space than I do, and I’m fine with that I hadn’t actually planned on having four: it’s just that when I carelessly lost the first Misha3, Kristal loaned me a mule, whom I bought and named Dottie.
I wanted my animals to live in comfort, so I built a nice, big stable for them!
Improving my house is less important in multiplayer than the people I play alongside on the server; yeah, yeah, sounds cheesy, but I don’t care Anyway, although the people on KP are mostly those whom I already befriended on Twitter, I’d not actually played with them, or hung out with them on Skype. And every one of them is a delight to get along with, which is great
There is a rather… odd situation, though, and it relates to Lawrence Salvatore, better known as “morningelegance” in Minecraft, and presently @Xevante on Twitter. He’s a lovely guy, and a great builder – but has this very disturbing habit of declaring war on everyone! Ironically, he doesn’t seem to do a very good job of keeping himself alive when he’s not trying to do away with others… which makes his chances of survival significantly slimmer!
Anyway, I shall conclude this particular blog post for now! Before I go, though, I’d just like to thank everyone on the server that I’ve hung out with properly so far: Meles, Wedgehog, DeamonEngineer, zattack, faithfulcupid, chiprock, and of course, thecrystalcrow And thanks also to Meles for letting me change my mind and join his server!
1 This statement sounds sort of like moony-eyed gazing up at Kristal on a pedestal, but it couldn’t be further from the truth. If you need advice, and she has experience in that area, you’ll get some very sound advice from her. And in a debate, she always has solid reasoning on her side. I’ve probably embarrassed her now, by telling you all this!
2 Since playing Feed The Beast, I’ve taken to building bases, rather than houses. I’m less concerned with virtual home comforts, and now I’m more about trying to keep things relatively practical
3 Meles’ Enchanted Forest (of Doom) is not a good place for animals. Worst part was, I’d left Misha in the Nether tunnel near Meles’ portal, and we think she wandered through. I am far more careful now.