1. Getting to Know Minecraft

Minecraft has been described many ways, but I like to call it a first-person adventure and builder game. Created by Mojang in 2009, it combines the building capabilities of Lego with a first-person shooter interface and puts them in an open, varied, and vaguely mysterious setting. Using a multitude of different materials (represented as blocks), players build tools and structures that help them survive and thrive in a seemingly endless world populated by animals, nighttime terrors, and a handful of scattered villagers.

And thrive you can. It’s a cliché, but the cliché is true: The only limit in Minecraft is the player’s imagination—and possibly parental screentime limits. Dedicated players make not only a variety ...

Get The Visual Guide to Minecraft: Dig into Minecraft with this (parent-approved) guide full of tips, hints, and projects! now with the O’Reilly learning platform.

O’Reilly members experience live online training, plus books, videos, and digital content from nearly 200 publishers.