Minetest advocacy thread (open source Minecraft)

Continuing the discussion from What games have you been playing?:

@bookwar I’ll have to dive into Minetest a little more! I was impressed with the world generation, but there’s still some polish missing that couldn’t replace Minecraft for me. I still haven’t deleted it, though, so maybe I just need to find a good community? lol

As with most FOSS, I’m grateful Minetest exists in case Minecraft goes in a direction I don’t like.

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Honestly speaking, I haven’t played Minecraft, so I can not really compare the two.

I started playing Minetest in its early days, more than 10 years ago. (I registered minetest.net domain for the first time, and when community and forum started to grow there, I handed it over to the main developer)

There were some funny stories from those days.

For example, the first introduction of monsters shooting fireballs was an ecological apocalypse:

monsters were spawning randomly in the dark corners, and then started to shoot fireballs randomly (but only horizontally), and fireball explosion cleared walls.

So you started to play a game, exploring and building stuff on the surface, green grass, sun and clear sky… And at the same time, underground the growing monster horde was clearing out everything on its way, turning it into enormous flat underground parking lot filled with monsters, waiting for you to come down for mining.

They patched it later, but definitely made me thinking about how you can not just introduce a new species of monsters in your game world, and have to think about balance and food chain.

Nowadays, the main feature of minetest, according to devs, is that it is not just a sandbox game, it is an engine, on top of which you can build additional mechanics.

And there is a library for them: Games - ContentDB

For example, there is “minecraft clone” MineClone 2 - ContentDB
or there is also a box puzzle: Box World 3D - ContentDB

And of course there are mods. I should probably try this one Techage Modpack - ContentDB


Minetest doesn’t sounds like a product you’d enjoy. Or maybe it just needs a motto. Like Minetest: Yourtest. Or a name like Das Mine OS! which can be roughly translated into “That is Mine Open Source!”.

For a game which purpose is to collaborate on all levels, starting with gameplay in a game world and going back to the design, are and source code patches, claiming the ownership of common goods sounds like a right thing to do. :smiley:

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Open Source developers have a tendency to downplay their creations. And it often is visible in the name of the project.

But that’s how it is: it does not try to oversell anything to you, but invites you to play with it, inside and outside the game itself.

Open source developers are horrible at marketing. We need to get better at that. I’m not sure of the best way to do that for Minetest. Too often it is looked at as a copy of Minecraft.

Recently I created a trailer for Mojotron: Robot Wars. Is there a good trailer for Minetest? I did a quick search but didn’t find anything that really stands out.

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If Minetest were to gain popularity, it would be as a version of Minecraft that’s owned by the people. Right now Minecraft and it’s creator, Mojang Studios, is going through a rough patch with their community. They’re planning on introducing an unpopular change that brings moderation and banning to a game that hasn’t anything like those features ever (not counting Bedrock edition). It’s widely seen as a move based on Microsoft’s involvement, which adds to the increasing anti-Microsoft sentiment.

The main pain point for anyone to trying playing Minetest more is that it is not on part with Minecraft for the folks who want a Minecraft clone. That will be an almost insurmountable hurdle as of today, in my opinion. It’s not just awareness. The game itself would get a decent amount of negative criticism in videos covering it.

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Well this is a positive development. Minecraft YouTuber AntVenom has made a video about Minetest!


I have been playing Minetest for a while now and am having so much fun. I played a lot on the server “Tunnelers’ Abyss” and it fills me with joy. I played Minecraft for years and would say I was a pretty hardcore fan but now, I think if MineClone 2/5 get a bit better then it could be a drop-in replacement for Minecraft.

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