Indie Games

Published on August 13th, 2011 | by Derek Strickland, Contributor

Notch’s Notions on “Minecraft Clones”

The well-known developer of the PC Indie mega-hit block-builder Minecraft, Markus Persson aka Notch, has remained neutral on what many MC players are calling “Minecraft clones“.

Recently the Indie developer at Mojang has spoken out to Ars Technica’s Andrew Webster in an article that focuses on the subject and Notch’s opinions on them. The article mentions titles such as Terraria and FortressCraft, both of which are key examples of the expanding sub-genre known as Minecraft clones.

Persson’s responses are not scathing nor are they filled with malice or any sort of ill will towards the developers of these games. His official remarks can be found below:

I strongly believe that true greatness comes from being influenced by other people’s work and improving it, making your own version of it, by mixing and matching your best influences and a few original ideas of your own,” Persson told Ars.

“Both FortressCraft and Terraria appear to be inspired by Minecraft, which in turn was inspired by many other games, including Infiniminer, Dwarf Fortress, and Dungeon Keeper.

However, I do not believe you can achieve something great or interesting by merely attempting to emulate something successful. It becomes especially embarrassing if you publicly deny any inspiration when it’s painfully clear how much of a copy it is.

Terraria is an amazing game, and if Minecraft is any inspiration for it, I feel proud to be part of its lineage. I play it frequently, and I can’t wait to see what the future holds for it.

FortressCraftis an obvious attempt to just take something popular and clone it as closely as possible. I still think it’s important that people are allowed and able to do things like that, but it’s hardly graceful.”

Markus Persson, excerpt from an Ars Technica article

As a gamer who has spent a decent amount of time playing Fortresscraft, relic hunting and building various objects, I can say that the Xbox Indie title is more of a social app than a game. There’s no objectivity in it, and there’s no actual parameters to define an adventure. The experience is more based on the social multiplayer elements of playing with friends rather than completing quests, and of course building virtually anything.

Interestingly enough the article makes no mention of the runner-up Xbox Indie block-builder Total Miner: Forge, which has many similarities to Minecraft’s actual objectivity, yet it lacks the social experience that FC delivers. I’m quite interested in what Notch would have to say about Total Miner as well–perhaps we’ll see the developer speak out again on the subject.

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About the Author

I'm an aspiring games journalist who writes articles focused on everything from Indie Games to next-gen titles. [Twitter] @Mr_Deeke [E-Mail] derek.s(at)gamingtruth(dot)com

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