Wednesday, April 6, 2011


One of the main holy wars that seems to divide the Minecraft fanbase is the issue of cheating. What I mean is, some think that you're the scum of the Earth undeserving of any respect whatsoever if you use MCEdit or any sort of mod that lets you spawn stuff. Others don't really care what you do, as long as the end result is awesome looking. Although my terms will never become popular, I will refer to them as the Purists and the Liberals.

By these definitions, I am a soft Liberal.

When you purchase Beta, you get a copy of Mojang Specification's handiwork. It is ideal on the side of Notch that you do only what the game was intended for: that you dig up everything while optionally fighting mobs and then manually build stuff. This is the ideology of an extreme Purist. To an extent, my personal code of ethics causes me to follow this. I will not spawn items or blocks, but instead dig them up and craft them personally.

However, when you buy the game and have a copy of it on your hard drive or preferred form of storage, this becomes your copy, and you are allowed to do whatever you please with it. Mojang can't monitor your actions and shut down the game if you were to start "cheating". Minecraft is a sandbox game, which means that there are multiple ways to do what you want. With the advent of mods and clever techniques the ways to do these things increase. This includes spawning blocks/items and using mods that help you teleport, fly, etc. And people will exploit these newfound methods in order to achieve their goals. If you are alright with doing this, then you hold a Liberal ideology.

I am a Purist in terms of my own gameplay, but when it comes to how others do things, I am a Liberal. Essentially, you follow your own code of ethics and I will follow mine. If they disagree, big deal. It's only a game. Yet many people do not follow this perspective. Extreme Purists will rage when they catch wind of someone using inventory editors or mods that let them see through blocks. By the Purist's standards, they should never be "cheating" by shortcutting the game. To them, it takes value out of what is constructed.

To me, the argument is nonsense. The only ones who should dictate our gameplay is Mojang and our own consciences. If Notch wants us to stop cheating then he will code the game to prevent us. He has stated he does not like when people mod his game, but he doesn't condemn it either as can be seen by him consistently allowing people to make mods. If Notch OKs it and our own minds permit it, why should we be stopped?