The game Minecraft took in almost one quarter of a billion dollars in 2012? WTF?

This game looks like the son of Wolfenstein 3D. The mind boggles.

It’s a lot of fun, a little like playing with Legos.

Because it’s the ultimate sandbox game. What you can do in it is pretty much limited only by your imagination.

A couple examples:

Minas Tirith (from Lord of the Rings)

King’s Landing (from Game of Thrones)

May I pointy out that - amazingly - graphics don’t actully sell games very well. Nobody bought FarCry because it looked good. It sold because they did some offered new and intriguing environments and gameplay. MineCraft does the same and appeals to a massive slice of people who weren’t necessarily gamers before.

I don’t play myself, but it’s a fascinating game and very well done.

Graphics do sell games, the problem is though that they take money and time to develop and take a lot of RAM, all of which could be used for other aspects of the game

Minecraft is just one of the latest games that has gone down the road of sacrificing graphics for a gameplay element, e.g. the ability to have huge, highly-interactive and highly alterable worlds. I remember when the original GTA came out, its 2D top-down graphics were a step behind other games at the time (which was on purpose as with top of the range graphics it could not have done the other things it did on the hardware available), but its large open world where you were free to do what you want was highly-innovative.

Doesn’t surprise me one bit.

Now where’d I put my diamond pickaxe…?

Minecraft has gameplay now? Maybe I’ll find my account information.

It is huge with elementary school kids… as well as adults.
It is also cheap. At around $20, most people can afford it.

I find this ironic because it’s a tool you can use to make anything you can imagine so they made something some one else imagined for them.

This. It’s like crack to children. My sons absolutely geek over that game and the cool thing is that it’s entirely appropriate for pretty much all ages.

The other day my eleven year old floored me with this house he was building…it had a kitchen with an island, a sink, a stove…a living room with a working fountain, bedrooms with furnishings, all manner of detail. Which is funny because at the end of the day a dwelling for a Steve is really just a hiding place from zombies at night time.

I would definitely argue against that. But this is not the time or place.

And anyway, I always liked Minecraft’s graphics. They’re evocative.

For example, these screenshots.

I am frequently awed by its blocky landscapes.

Graphics can help sell games, but we’ve reached a point where they are just another quality that may or may not be important.
[ul]
[li]People have become sophisticated enough that “cool graphics” alone isn’t enough; plus, there’s so many games with cool graphics. Cool graphics don’t make you stand out much.[/li]
[li]By the same token, people have become sophisticated enough to look past simpler or outright retro graphics if the underlying gameplay is good enough.[/li]
[li]We’ve reached something of a graphics plateau, where it takes a lot of resources for minimal improvement.[/li]
[li]Lots of gamers are now older people, old enough to be nostalgic about older style games and an older style look[/li][/ul]

In a gaming landscape in which Dwarf Fortress is a perfectly viable commercial proposition, I’m pretty sure Minecraft’s graphics aren’t holding it back…

It is fun to play. The first rule of all gaming.

I am incapable of thinking of Minecraft without thinking of this comic; It so flawlessly sums up both the objections of people who haven’t played (and c’mon “it looks like Q-bert took a dump in my yard” is priceless), and the addiction of people who have.

Absolutely. In fact, I don’t think still shots can really convey the feeling of moving through this enormous landscape mountains, forests, etc. Sometimes I have a difficult time just starting my house, because I don’t want to disturb the natural order that you find.

I’d say it’s a perfect time and place, considering the OP’s main bogglement is at the game’s graphics.

The way I see it, graphics are a tool. A game with immensely shitty gameplay but great graphics isn’t likely to do well. A game with absolutely amazing gameplay and shitty graphics fairs better, but your gameplay still has to be REALLY good. All in all, though, style is more important than graphics. Minecraft has a coherent style. Sure they’re just fundamentally texels, but making sure everything, from sword to fence is made of little blocks gives a coherent theme rather than simply coming off as lazy.

I’ve seen crappy indie games with 2D graphics that put me off because it was clear that they were trying but didn’t hit the mark. The graphics don’t have to be amazing, they can absolutely suck, they just have to suck in a consistent, self-aware fashion.

And graphics can bolster something. Can you make a (non-text, text is a whole other beast) horror game with crappy graphics and bad sound? Sure, but it’s going to be a lot more difficult to create that atmosphere without it. It depends on the genre and what you want to achieve. And it’s not always a “crutch” or bad to rely on graphics, sometimes it’s just plain sensible.

Anyway, on Minecraft specifically, I stopped playing a long time ago. I tried again a few months ago, got a little bit in and then got bored. Minecraft is a great sandbox, but I feel that as a game it has poorly balanced progression and doesn’t really offer much once you tire of building castles.

… voxels :smack:

What’s the **game **part of Micecraft? Am I anywhere close to correct in thinking The Sims::Barbie dolls // Minecraft::Legos?