Now that's what I call a snapshot! After weeks of bugfixes and mapmaking tweaks, Mojang has finally released something a little more fun. Snapshots 14w11a and b make big changes to the way that minecart physics works.
For starters, carts go much further and faster. Furnace minecarts now also give a huge boost to carts they hit and there's a much greater chance of minecarts derailing at high speeds, so watch what you're doing there. Improved collision and position handling is welcomed immensely too, though I'd love it if they bounced on slime blocks.
There's a new mob! The Endermite is like an ender-themed silverfish, which spawns occasionally in place of an enderman teleporting away or when an ender pearl lands. Endermen are hostile towards them, so you can use that to your advantage if you want to set up some kind of enderman/endermite fight club for kicks.
A few other tidbits - mob AI has been improved generally, and fence gates and brewing stands are now both models rather than flat. Lighting also works properly with models too, so that's a handy thing. Finally, a few bugs have been squished, like derailed minecarts sinking into the ground and rails not rendering from below.
On the community side of things, someone has already designed an enderman trap using the new endermite AI. It's a nifty way of acquiring a lot of ender pearls quickly if that's what you want to do, though you'll need to refresh the endermites regularly.
Meanwhile, Hiddenworm3 has been putting together guides on how to make various kinds of Islamic arches. He started with Keel arches last week, and has now covered horseshoe arches too. If you've got an Arabian-themed build that you're working on, then you'll definitely want to check them out. As a bonus you'll learn a little something about architecture too.
YouTuber REALITYsuccz has worked out, somewhat ironically, how to make rivers and lakes more realistic by adding fish to them. It requires command blocks, but works pretty nicely in the latest snapshots.
Finally, this renaissance town square is several shades of amazing. The lighting and texture pack helps, but I'm a big fan of the way that brick has been used for edging the buildings and accentuating their shapes. Beautiful work.
Right. I'll leave it there for today. If you've seen anything in the Minecraft community that you think I should be highlighting, tell me about it by dropping me an email. I'll be back with another roundup this time next week.