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5 out of 5
Every so often a game comes out that changes the world of gaming forever – and Minecraft (the Xbox Live Arcade edition) is that game for me. The PC version of this game has been out for a handful of years, but since I’m not a PC gamer it never crossed my path until the Xbox 360 version hit in May of 2012. And this gamer couldn’t be happier.
For those of you that are unfamiliar with Minecraft – let me explain it for you. Imagine an open world that looks like it was designed by a fifth grader – a blocky environment as if it were made with giant Lego bricks. You can equip yourself with miscellaneous tools such as a shovel, axe, sword or pickaxe to mold your environments to your liking. Dig a tunnel that goes straight down to mine for gold or emeralds (just watch out for lava) or build that giant tree house that would make any ten year old kid envious… the options are endless and so is the gameplay.
There are two modes in Minecraft (the Xbox 360 Edition) – “Survival Mode” or “Creative Mode”. Both of which have their own appealing quality. In “Survival Mode” you are thrown into the environment with only the shirt off your back – you must then venture off into this blocky open world to mine for materials to build shelter and to survive the zombie apocalypse each night – yep, zombies and spiders will spawn every night and try to terrorize your blocky existence. You can either set the “Survival” mode to Peaceful, Easy, Normal or Hard – depending on your desired level of difficulty. Peaceful will spawn no zombies or spiders and on the other side of the spectrum Hard is a relentless zombie filled experience for those of you who are looking for more of a challenge.
The other mode is more for the casual gamer – “Creative Mode” gives you every piece of the puzzle – an endless amount of supplies and every item in the game. And did I mention you can fly? Yep, instead of only walking, running and jumping around you can fly to the ends of the map to build your Lego empire. Do you want a castle in the sky? It’s easy to do in Creative Mode. This mode isn’t really for me because it takes the fun out of the game, but my kids love it and they will play it for hours.
The Bottom Line: This is one amazing game. My only complaint is that I waited too long to pick it up. It’s definitely worth the price – in fact, I would have paid more. I love getting lost in my Minecraft world – a world where I live in a giant castle with a lava filled moat.