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Minecraft snapshot 14w08a brings back customisation for superflat worlds, enforces drowning

Superflat worlds are most often used for Creative mode construction.

Mojang’s dedicated Minecraft squad continue to work away on overhauls to the game’s block models, menus and inventory system in line with a new API. But if Obama has time to swat bugs, so do they, and so here’s Minecraft snapshot 14w08a – the catchiest monikered Mojang project since 0x10c.

Drowning has been a consequence of inefficient and reckless swimming in video games since Tomb Raider, and I’m told a similarly strict rule is in place IRL. But testers of Mojang’s nextmost Minecraft update had found swimming in water no longer diminished their heart bars, and they were free to cross the ocean floor long after their boats had broken apart – so long as they tapped the spacebar from time to time.

That’s now fixed, along with a host of other offending bugs.

Superflat worlds – i.e. maps generated devoid of any vertical landmarks whatsoever, ideal for large-scale Creative mode construction – have long been customised manually using block IDs, which allowed users to dictate the presence of, for instance,strongholds, dungeons or mineshafts, or particular biomes.

Ongoing changes to block IDs have lately rendered this system unworkable – yet the superflat customisation menu remained untouched. Resulting player confusion has led Mojang to update the menu in the last few days.

“This will make things easier and it was one of the few things that still needed to be updated to the new IDs,” tweeted Minecraft teamster Searge at the weekend.

Other snapshot fixes have neatened up the inventory UI, which had been showing an errant player nametag. Here’s the full changelog for reference or pinning on your fridge:

  • Superflat Customization still uses Block IDs
  • Iron Trapdoor has the name “tile.ironTrapdoor.name”
  • When swimming in water, you do not drown.
  • /execute not obeying the gamerule commandBlockOutput false rule
  • Hopper: java.lang.NullPointerException: Handling packet
  • java.lang.NullPointerException: Exception in server tick loop
  • Nametag shown in inventory screen
  • Commands in the form /execute testforblock do not update comparators correctly
  • “/scoreboard players test playername” will not tab-complete the objective argument
  • testforblock command not working with execute command.
  • No way to hide Commands executed by Entities for OPs

As always, snapshots are available by creating a new profile in the Minecraft launcher, naming it ‘snapshots’, and then checking the box to enable experimental updates. Bewarned, however: there’s always the possibility they’ll corrupt your saves, so remember to backup your beloved worlds first.

Do any of you lot choose to play fast and loose in the temperamental world of snapshots?