David Crookes looks at the resources that help you find your way around this sandbox video game
Minecraft for Raspberry Pi has a special API (Application Programming Interface) that enables gamers to code straight into the world. With Minecraft for Raspberry Pi you can code blocks, adjust settings and hack the world completely. Here are some of the best resources for learning Minecraft with a Raspberry Pi.
Price: £3.99 (Free download)
Minecraft takes on a life of its own with a Raspberry Pi, thanks to it coming with an API. This allows you to create mods that link the game to the real world. It also lets you manipulate the structure using Python scripts, opening up a host of potential hacks.
For a solid grounding in such matters, this entry in The MagPi Essentials collection is a blockbuster. It helps to quickly build confidence, briefly introducing the basics of the game and how to get started before moving you straight into your first program and the fundamentals of the API.
As well as understanding how to control and change any block, you’ll learn how to code mini-games – including a fun two-player blast based on Nintendo’s Splatoon. The book also covers the terraforming process that lets you create an entire world from a favourite block and the ability to play God by sparking a host of natural disasters.
This tutorial explores Minecraft: Pi Edition’s sole playing mode – Classic – and encourages you to write a ‘Hello World’ program that can be adapted to transport Steve around the world.
With this tutorial from the Wolfram blog, you can learn how to combine Minecraft and the Wolfram Language to create in-game structures that you can then look at from the air.
This tutorial, taken from issue 68 of The MagPi magazine, explains how you can design and build a house using Python. It comes with links to the project’s complete code.
Don’t worry if you’re an absolute Minecraft newbie, because this well-explained online resource certainly has you covered. It leads you by the hand to ensure that your first steps in the game are as painless as possible and, by splitting the guide over nine approachable sections, each lesson has the right amount of information without feeling overwhelming.
The first four tutorials concentrate on installing the game and explaining the basics of gameplay. The next four plunge you into the Python programming interface where each command and block of code is helpfully highlighted and breezily explained.
We like that it avoids overcomplicating matters and that results are seen on-screen at every step. Ending with tips on how you can use your knowledge, it’s sure to whet your appetite for more.
Visit the official Minecraft website and, as well as being able to download a free copy of the game, you can access the Raspberry Pi quick-start guide and Minecraft wiki. The former shows you the hardware and software needed to get Minecraft Pi up and running. The latter, however, is a mine of information and one to bookmark for future use, particularly so for the handful of references at the end and, crucially, the details listed under Gameplay.
Here you can find out how each block, tool, and plant works within the game, along with items that only work if modded. You can also discover any limitations, both within the elements themselves and the Pi version of Minecraft. Fully editable and expandable, it should go some way to answering your questions.
Carrie Anne Philbin’s gentle and informative introduction to hacking Minecraft using Python is delightfully easy to follow thanks to an exhaustive approach that explains and shows each step in detail.
Although poorly presented and spending large chunks in silence, this inspiring video is nevertheless educational, covering a Survival Mode mod while linking to Python scripts and assets in the description.
Superbly fronted with dollops of humour, this extremely approachable guide explores Python coding and the basics of the Minecraft API, with lots of nods to extra resources and further information.