Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Nether Trip, Tree Farm, and House Work

It's been a few days, here's a little update on the random things happening at the cave base.

First of all, I decided it was time to hit the Nether. I want to use Nether brick for future construction. There's a tunnel on the southeastern part of the central hub which is where I put the portal. I have my sound turned off, but hopefully it's far enough that the portal sounds won't bother me.

Not the most glamorous looking thing. I'll take care of that in time. If you recall in the creative map I have, there is a fancy setup that uses iron blocks as a sort of iris for the portal. When that iris is closed, you can't get out the of the portal. I'm going to eventually set up something like that for this portal. It just seems pretty cool to me.

As I exited the portal, I noticed the terrain was rather... familiar...

I don't remember when they did this, but I don't like it. My cave base portal linked with the Nether-side portal I had established a few months ago during my first trip to the Nether. Using Single Player commands I set a waypoint right here. I wanted to find the fortress I had seen so long ago.

It wasn't as difficult a find as I expected. This Nether fortress is almost entirely encased in the Netherrack terrain. You could climb the mountain it's entombed in and you have almost no chance of realizing it's there unless you see one of the few parts that jut out. This particular fortress has been the source of my Nether brick. In this next picture you can see the results of one dead end where I have been gathering brick:

Not too far from this spot and the place where I enter the fortress, there are a pair of Blaze spawners.

The left spawner is down at the end of the path, and you might not be able to see it. The right spawner is much more obvious. I have plans for these two. I wish to make an XP farm with them, as well as possibly make this the centerpiece of my future Nether base. The base itself would sport a circular design, again thanks to Single Player Commands.

Returning from the Nether, I anticipated arriving back at my cave. Instead, I arrived at a familiar place:

My old home. My intent is to start over at the cave, so I didn't take anything from this area and just returned to the cave. But when I got there, I discovered that a couple stragglers followed me!

So now I have cats in my base. We'll call them Herp and Derp.

Of course, that's not the only time in recent history that I encountered relics of my past. A couple days ago I was exploring the Extreme Hills biome I reside in, and around 250 meters from my base I saw this:

If it looks kind of spooky, it's really not. This is a house made during my failed attempt at the City Construction Challenge. I recall it being a storage building, and also one of my early attempts at designing a house that looked decent. I suppose the jury is still out on that one.

Back at home I became dissatisfied with my mining equipment. Even diamond pickaxes were just going slow. I've been avoiding doing this for a while but finally I gave in and crafted this:

The Enchantment Table! And as I had nowhere else to put it, I went ahead and just stuck it in the basement.

Then it was time for my first enchantment. Because there were no bookshelves around the enchantment table, I could not get a very high result. I am pleased with the outcome.

Even with Efficiency I, I can push through blocks in a faster pace than I've ever experienced. Can't wait to get higher XP levels.

I also worked on my underground tree farm. In order to get a good growing height, I mined the roof out to a height of nine blocks. These trees look pretty nice.

Remember the stone brick road (or whatever I decided to call it)? It's coming together quite nicely. I noticed that with the water station being recessed one block, the ceiling and floor patterns would be odd looking. So I tore that down and moved it one block further. One block makes all the difference in the world.

Now to begin with the ceiling. The stone brick road will be five meters in height, with a ceiling composed of Nether brick and sandstone stripes.

I really must get more lighting. Actually, lighting is just one of many things that need to be worked on. This is quite a huge project for me! You'll also see the unused side of the road has been turned to stone brick, just for consistency's sake. I don't know, I almost feel like I want to expand the width of this spot. It feels rather claustrophobic.

In a bid to start getting more XP for enchanting, I went nighttime mob hunting. Most of the monsters downed were skeletons, with Creepers coming in second. I needed just one more string to make a bow, but it took three nights to find a spider that would drop string on death. Another spider happened to survive until daytime, but it found itself in quite a predicament:

Trapped on a little bit of floating dirt. I could not get close enough to hit it. I also experienced my first instance of passive mobs spawning in my base. This sheep appeared atop a dirt block for the tree farm:

Right now, I would love to get an XP farm going. In order to accomplish that I want to get a spawner. There's a dungeon hidden somewhere near me under a beach, and there's also an abandoned mineshaft some distance away that has a couple cave spider spawners. But if I'm going to get any of these for myself, I want to do that the proper way: getting at least on Easy mode and taking out any of the monsters spawned from them. I most certainly won't loot any dungeon chests unless I defeat the spawner that way.