I recently spent an evening getting drunk and playing Minecraft with my roommate. With all the new features that have been added to the 360 version of the game since we had played it last (mostly old features if you’ve been keeping up with the PC version), we decided to start a fresh new world.
With that new world came fresh feelings of discovery as we explored a brand new bit of randomly generated terrain. But it wasn’t at all like the first time either of us had played the game. See, while the world was new, the concept wasn’t. Not after having played hundreds upon hundreds of hours of Minecraft in the past.
When I played the game for the first time — back when it had just transitioned from alpha to beta — everything was new. Not only was I plopped into a brand new world, I was plopped into a world where I had only a smidgeon of an idea about what to do or what to expect (even though I had watched the “Minecraft Is Just Awesome” video dozens of times.) The days were enthralling; the nights were scary as hell.
As I put more time into the game, and more time into looking up strategies and creative accomplishments of others online, I transitioned from that wide-eyed and slightly scared wanderer to a man who had truly conquered the world of Minecraft. And, whenever I boot up a new world, I know exactly what I need to do in order to maximize my playtime.
In a sense, it’s kind of sad. I miss the feeling of stumbling into my first cave, or discovering my first bit of coal, or getting ‘sploded to death by my first creeper. In fact, I feel a bit like Theodore from the film Her when he said: “Sometimes I think I have felt everything I’m ever gonna feel. And from here on out, I’m not gonna feel anything new. Just lesser versions of what I’ve already felt.”
If only there were some way to go back. Sigh.