From Hunger Games to Theme Parks: Minecraft Specialty Maps and Modes
Minecraft. We all know it; most of us love it. But, are you getting the most out of your experience? I'm not talking about Survival vs. Creative or one Minecraft seed vs. another. I'm talking about special maps and modes.
Clever creators have crafted a smorgasbord of maps specifically for special game modes and theme parks. The Hunger Games maps even inspired Minecraft's new Battle Mini! Have I got your attention? Read on for more information and some of the entertaining Let's Plays that show off these awesome maps. Just remember, some maps work for PC while others work for Xbox -- so be sure to investigate map requirements before attempting to download!
Hunger Games/Survival Games
Inspired by the popular series, the Hunger Games maps -- also known as Survival Games -- are a Minecraft battle royale. Players start in a beginning lobby area before either being dropped into the map or having a grace period to run out and pick a starting point. True to the inspiration, the last player standing is the winner!
The generic rules for the game are simple. First and foremost, players must begin with empty inventories. All items that players will use can be found in chests on the map or taken after another player is killed. Players are not allowed to break blocks -- in other words, there's no cheating by creating your own shortcuts and hideouts! You are allowed to break leaf blocks, but you can't place them back down except in a chest. Every map has a rules board that lists both the basic rules and any map-specific ones, so be sure to check that area out before the host starts the game.
A wide variety of Hunger Games maps exist, from the Enchanted Kingdom to Halo-inspired maps, even holiday-themed! Check out the links above or the video below to see stampylonghead (Or, Mr. Stampy Cat to his Subscribers) take on the odds in his Minecraft Xbox Let's Plays.
Feel up to the challenge? Then may the odds be ever in your favor.
Sad Panda Adventures
Inspired by rail shooters like Pokemon Snap, Sad Panda Adventures takes place in a magical land where pandas come in many forms -- including winged pandas -- and live happy lives as immortal beings. But when a jealous Ghast steals the Mama Panda's immortality-granting flower, it's up to one special panda to save the day.
For this game, players hop on the back of a Sad Panda. While the panda moves through the levels, players are tasked with shooting certain types of mobs, any other mobs trying to kill them, and chests for loot and extra arrows. Multiple difficulty levels keep the game entertaining and challenging, and the option to support 1-4 players allows friends to come aboard and help the pandas.
This map can be found on Minecraft Maps. Check out iBalllisticSquid's playthrough from the first two levels and see just how much customization went into this map:
Want to give it a try? Head on over to Minecraft Maps!
Sky Giants is a team PvP map where the goal is to kill the opposing teams' giants before your team's giant is killed. Each of the four teams is assigned an island with a Giant Friend like Terrence in the above picture. Players can mine, shop, and fight guardians to kit their teams in diamond gear. An enchantment table is available to upgrade items. Other mobs will occasionally spawn, and the center island has a pavilion that spawns Guardians for extra boosts and loot upon defeat.
Player deaths affect points, but players have infinite spawns. For this game mode, a team's giant friend is also their spawn point. Once the giant dies, the spawn is gone, and the team is eliminated.
Gameplay for Sky Giants is equal parts offense and defense. The TL;DR instructions would read "Protect your giant, kill theirs." In practice, though, it's more difficult. Take the below Let's Play with AshDubh and iBallisticSquid. How much more difficult would their run-through have been if they weren't talking to each other? Communication with your team is the key to strategy in many games, however your team decides to handle it.
Look like fun to you? Give Sky Giants a try today, and protect your giant zombie friend!
Roller coasters, mini games, and themed restaurants, oh my! Game mode maps aren't the only specialty content that outside builders are bringing to the denizens of Minecraft. Another portion of downloadable maps includes theme parks. From parkour challenges to fully automated redstone-wonder roller coasters, theme parks large and small can entertain you for hours.
From massive parks like Notch Land to single-ride maps like the Ghostbusters-themed Railbusters coaster (that doubles as a four-player mini game), the options are limitless. Creators like Leisure Gaming and Nuropsych1 are teaming up with others, dedicating hours of their time and expertise to bring these fantastic experiences. Don't believe how epic they are? Check out the below video of a Doctor Who Minecraft coaster.
Buckle up and go for a ride -- but please remember to keep your hands and feet inside the minecart at all times.
Have any Minecraft specialty maps that you would recommend? Know any great Let's Play YouTubers or map creators? Let us know in the comments!