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Minecraft 1.8.1 will improve stability, make the ender dragon killable again

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Minecraft 1.8.1 will improve stability, make the ender dragon killable again

There’s a reason Mojang dubbed Minecraft 1.8 the Bountiful Update. It was the culmination of 10 months’ work, stuffed with exciting infrastructure rewrites and rabbits. But in the way of all updates, it’s yielded an equally exciting number of bugs and breakages.

Mojang have pushed out a pre-release version of 1.8.1, which they reckon will go a long way to solving stability issues and a whole host of other more colourful problems.

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Minecraft Bukkit project lead quits, Mojang take over

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Minecraft Bukkit project lead quits, Mojang take over

The team lead of Minecraft mod Bukkit attempted to shut down the project this morning, over concerns with Mojang’s pay-to-win crackdown and his ability to continue distributing the mod. But within minutes, Mojang had quashed his worries about EULAs and picked up development of Bukkit themselves.

“Warren over at bukkit seems to have forgotten that the project was bought by Mojang over two years ago," tweeted Minecraft lead Jeb, “and isn’t his to discontinue."

Minecraft staffer and original Bukkit lead Dinnerbone will now see the mod through to its 1.8 release.

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Minecraft snapshot 14w31a reworks the world border, adds noisier rabbits

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Minecraft snapshot 14w31a reworks the world border, adds noisier rabbits

Minecraft 1.8 is just about finished. Which means sometime soon, the good work done across many weeks of snapshots will be tipped over into the main game: rabbits, endermites, elder guardians and all.

“We’re starting to wind down our development cycle, and as such we’re now focusing on bug fixing for a smooth release," said Mojang’s Dinnerbone. “This weeks snapshot comes with a bunch of fixed bugs, some more optimization and only minimal featurecreep."

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Mojang prep for one of Minecraft's "most requested features since birth": name changes

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Mojang prep for one of Minecraft's "most requested features since birth": name changes

One of the consequences of Minecraft’s folksy roots as a blocky prototype on TIGsource is that huge swathes of its infrastructure weren’t exactly built for, say, massively multiplayer persistent worlds.

One of those underperforming systems has been character names - which since the game’s inception have been tied to bannings. That meant that allowing name changes was tantamount to handing griefers diamond pickaxes and a complimentary bag of TNT.

Thankfully, Mojang have now just about finished a database rework that’ll soon let players switch identities without placing servers at risk.

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Minecraft snapshot 14w10a expunges poltergeists from spectator mode

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Minecraft snapshot 14w10a expunges poltergeists from spectator mode

Work at Mojang continues apace on rewrites of Minecraft’s inventory, block state concepting and block model formatting systems, all in the name of a robust plugin API. The fruits of that haven’t emerged yet, but the dev team have found time to squeeze off a few bugfixes - chiefly for the new spectator mode - and to get the game shipshape for player name changes.

“Don’t worry, we have some cool survival plans soon!", wrote Dinnerbone.

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Minecraft snapshot 14w07a introduces team objectives and hidden nametags for multiplayer

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Minecraft snapshot 14w07a introduces team objectives and hidden nametags for multiplayer

Mojang’s Minecraft division - about a sixth of their overall headcount these days, by my maths - are hard at work rewriting internal things that don’t make for good headlines. The way blocks are rendered, the inventory system: that's the sort of stuff they’ve been fiddling with before they usher in a new Plugin API.

For the time being, we’ve a weekly snapshot update that fixes a bunch of bugs - and adds some potentially really cool options for map makers.

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Minecraft 1.5: everything we know about The Redstone Update (the best bits, plus a few guesses)

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Minecraft 1.5: everything we know about The Redstone Update (the best bits, plus a few guesses)

After many enticing updates, Mojang have told us that the Redstone Update will be coming our way sometime this month, perhaps even sometime very, very soon. Here's a breakdown of all the most exciting features the team have said they're working on, plus a little speculation as to what else might still sneak its way into Minecraft 1.5. Although the team seem pretty certain about what will and won't be in this update, they have been known to spring the odd surprise, so you'll forgive us for throwing in a few excited (ahem, educated) guesses, too.

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Prepare to celebrate: unexpected Minecraft snapshot adds fireworks, brings joy

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Prepare to celebrate: unexpected Minecraft snapshot adds fireworks, brings joyYesterday you may have caught Nathan "Dinnerbone" Adams saying that there were "no plans to release a [Minecraft] snapshot today." Well, looks like that was quite factually correct, as Mojang have still given us a snapshot this week, releasing this today instead. Why? "Thing is," they said on their blog, "we suddenly decided we wanted to make sure that you have fireworks for New Year’s Eve."

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Minecraft IRL: bridging the gap between worlds

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Minecraft IRL: bridging the gap between worldsThe term "Minecraft IRL" has been used in all sorts of contexts over the years, including for elaborate in-public cosplaying or examples of real-life behaviour that mirrors the game, but lately it's become more and more associated with a particular kind of image manipulation. Lately, and particularly on reddit, Minecraft IRL has come to stand for photoshops that suggest the world of Minecraft sometimes exists just beyond our own. Here's a few of the most popular posted on r/Minecraft/ in just the last 24 hours, representing only a few of the many, many images out there.

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Minecraft 1.4: The Pretty Scary Update - everything we know

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Minecraft 1.4: The Pretty Scary Update - everything we know

Alongside the usual technical tweaks and bug fixes, Minecraft 1.4 is set to introduce some clever and curious new features, many of which you can see for yourself if you fancy downloading the latest developer snapshot. Be aware that, of course, this is a work in progress and not representative of everything 1.4 will offer, but here's some of what we can expect.

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Alienware - Game VictoriousTurtle Beach
Blockstorm hands on: dig a trench as Walter White for the first time in an FPS

Blockstorm

Blockstorm hands on: dig a trench as Walter White for the first time in an FPS

The Witcher 3 review in progress

The Witcher® 3: Wild Hunt

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Drive Any Track hands on: splice your music collection with Wipeout

Drive Any Track

Drive Any Track hands on: splice your music collection with Wipeout

Nvidia Showcase: Ten tips for making stunning GTA V videos

Nvidia Showcase

Nvidia Showcase: Ten tips for making stunning GTA V videos

Blade & Soul hands on: how NCSoft are bringing Wushu West

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The best Heroes of the Storm heroes for beginners

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Project CARS PC review

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Project CARS PC review

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Making it in Unreal: facing teenage demons with rage and fear in Red Goddess

Red Goddess

Making it in Unreal: facing teenage demons with rage and fear in Red Goddess

Hands on with the first pornography for the Oculus Rift (NSFW)

Oculus Rift

Hands on with the first pornography for the Oculus Rift (NSFW)

Fair play to Nick Allen: the SKT-Fnatic bug, and the ambiguities of pro League of Legends

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Fair play to Nick Allen: the SKT-Fnatic bug, and the ambiguities of pro League of Legends

Why on earth is half the planet playing Clicker Heroes?

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Why on earth is half the planet playing Clicker Heroes?

Star Wars: The Old Republic is actually pretty good now, as long as you subscribe

Star Wars: The Old Republic

Star Wars: The Old Republic is actually pretty good now, as long as you subscribe

Introducing The Bard's Tale IV: the sequel Wasteland 2's creators always wanted to make

The Bard's Tale IV

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Weekend Deal Dump: Free fights!

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Weekend Deal Dump: Free fights!

Galactic Civilizations 3 review

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Kerbal Space Program review

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Kerbal Space Program review

The best Grand Theft Auto V mods

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We’ve got an armoury full of keys for Warface guns, and we’re giving them away to you

Warface

We’ve got an armoury full of keys for Warface guns, and we’re giving them away to you

The best Cities: Skylines mods

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The 17 Best Indie Games on PC

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Topic of the Week: What do you want from Assassin's Creed: Syndicate?

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SK Telecom yield League of Legends MSI title to China's EDG as Faker falls short

League of Legends

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Making it in Unreal: meet the Mysty-eyed Starry Expanse team rebuilding Riven in 3D

Riven: The Sequel to MYST

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Weekend Deal Dump: Witchers, soldiers and vampire ghost knights

Weekend Deal Dump

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Building Galactic Civilizations 3 inside the

Galactic Civilizations® III

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The studio behind Space Engineers are working on self-improving AI that may one day outstrip humanity

Space Engineers

The studio behind Space Engineers are working on self-improving AI that may one day outstrip humanity

Hands on with Block N Load, also one of our writers died

Block N Load

Hands on with Block N Load, also one of our writers died

Why Blizzard won't change those Hearthstone cards you hate

Hearthstone: Heroes of Warcraft

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The 22 best strategy games on PC

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[CLOSED] We're giving away 25 Space Colony Steam keys

Space Colony: Steam Edition

[CLOSED] We're giving away 25 Space Colony Steam keys

No regrets: inside the spectacular rise and fall of Space Hulk devs Full Control

Space Hulk

No regrets: inside the spectacular rise and fall of Space Hulk devs Full Control

Hearthstone is outgrowing World of Warcraft, and Blizzard are fine with that

Hearthstone: Heroes of Warcraft

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WWE 2K15 career mode: The trials of Baby-Faced Babyman

WWE 2K15

WWE 2K15 career mode: The trials of Baby-Faced Babyman

The best PC games of 2015 and 2014

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How EL Gaming turned the World of Tanks grand finals into a knife fight

World of Tanks

How EL Gaming turned the World of Tanks grand finals into a knife fight

Getting from The Neverhood to Armikrog

Armikrog

Getting from The Neverhood to Armikrog

Order of Battle: Pacific review

Order of Battle: Pacific

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Topic of the Week: Do you care about achievements?

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Making it in Unreal: Pangaea New World is a post-apocalyptic MMOFPS about loneliness

Pangaea New World

Making it in Unreal: Pangaea New World is a post-apocalyptic MMOFPS about loneliness