Monday, April 25, 2011

The Quesadila Adventure, Part 1

Two things.  First, this post isn't about food, and second, the misspelling of "quesadilla" in the title is intentional.  Now, on to the story.

Off and on for the past couple weeks, I've been browsing the Minecraft forums' World Seed section, where people share interesting worlds and the seed you need to enter to generate that world.  Sometimes there's a challenge associated with a specific seed, like the 404 challenge, but most of them just highlight interesting terrain features and dungeons.  Coordinates of anything interesting are often provided.  Just in case you didn't know, pressing F3 in Minecraft will reveal, among other things, your current coordinates.

The latest seed I've been trying out is "Quesadila".  Without the quotes.  The forum thread highlighted the fact that it has two open-air dungeons right next to each other that you spawn very close to.  Other posters quickly noticed the giant floating island, also nearby the spawners.  I thought that sounded cool, so I popped it in and generated it.

This post is mostly written in a first-person narrative style, I guess proving that I can indeed write like this.  Very few fourth wall breaks should happen, ideally.  There will be at the beginning, but then it will transition and only maybe break once.  I do explain things using actual in-game mechanics though, so there will be words like "despawn", "stacks of clay", and other things that make it feel more like an account of gameplay than an actual real story.  Yeah, I'm not really a writer.

I spawned near one of the two pillars that holds up the floating island.  Whacked F3 and started heading towards the coordinates of the dungeons.  While walking I looked back at the area underneath the floating island, which is completely dark at all times, and saw two skeletons headed for me.  I lead them out into the light, which thankfully they are deathly allergic to, and after a few seconds of dodging arrows, I picked up their drops.

Arrows and bones in hand, I continued to the specified coordinates and saw the dungeons.  Then I saw the clay nearby.  "Might as well get started", I thought to myself, and ran over to a nearby tree to get some wood.  Soon thereafter I made a workbench and both a wooden pick and shovel.  Noting that one of the dungeons had water pouring into it, I began digging up sand and dirt that I could use to block it off and get rid of it.  But then, my clay-gathering instincts took over and I used it to block off the clay instead so I could gather it without water pouring in.  While doing that, I noticed a second patch of clay underwater.  I hastily gathered more sand and began surrounding it, but then the sun began to set.

Earlier I had found some coal in the side of a hill near the dungeons and had mined it out, leaving a nice cave.  While my true desire was to settle on top of the floating island, this small cave would make due for now.  I went in, expanded it out a bit, then dropped my workbench and crafted a door.  Placed the door and went back to crafting.  I figured I'd need a furnace while gathering materials to make tools and get up onto the floating island, so I made one.

I don't know why it didn't come to mind.  Usually it does.  Normally on my first night, after bunkering into the side of a mountain somewhere, I dig down deep into the earth to see what I can find.  This usually yields at least one cave before hitting bedrock, and plenty of coal and iron, which are the most important things to have early on.  Having forgotten to do that, I just stood by the door and watched the small portion of the world I could see.  My otherwise boring observation of the world was made interesting when a skeleton dropped in from above and looked in the door.  Thankfully, since I placed the door correctly, from the outside, it couldn't shoot through the door at me.  So there I spent the rest of my first night in this world, staring at a skeleton through a door.

After what seemed like an eternity, the sun rose and the skeleton's severe allergy to sunlight kicked in.  During my wait I had also heard sounds of a spider coming from somewhere nearby.  Once the skeleton had fully burnt up, I equipped the stone sword I'd made during the night and went out to collect its drops, only to find none, and a spider jumping on me from behind.  Interesting, since the spiders are supposed to be passive during the day.  After a while of waving my sword in its general direction, it died, and I claimed one piece of string.

Given the event that had just occurred, my second day now had two goals.  First, to block off the clay so I could gather it, and second, to find food.  The dungeons could wait.  Clay is just about as rare as dungeons are, so when I find it, I prioritize gathering it.  More sand in hand, I finished blocking off the underwater clay.  I went and got some dirt to displace the water, and after a brief while, the clay was finally exposed to the air.

Then my attention turned to the dungeons.  I still hadn't blocked off the water, so I got more sand and did that.  I began displacing the water, but then I remembered I needed food.  Fortunately, some pigs were nearby, so I hit them a few times with my sword, and claimed my reward: four strips of bacon.

As an aside, I use an ever so slightly tweaked texture pack.  All textures are default, save for the pork chops.  For those, I copy/pasted the bacon textures from the Painterly Pack.  With the addition of some tweaks to the language file inside minecraft.jar, the transformation of pork chop to bacon is complete.  Unfortunately, a texture pack can't also provide its own language file, so a modified minecraft.jar is the only solution.

I quickly ran back to my makeshift base to cook the bacon.  After doing so, I realized that I hadn't found enough wool yet to make a bed.  So I set out in search of sheep, and after a short while I had enough.  Made my bed just as the sun set, plunked it down in the corner of my cave, and went to sleep.  Only to be rudely awakened by a skeleton who had somehow gotten in through my closed door.  I swung my sword at it frantically, but its arrows bested me.

Respawning, I immediately and unfortunately attracted the attention of a spider.  I quickly jumped into the water, which would slow the spider down, negating its lunge that lets it move faster than I can run.  I tried to leave it behind, but to no avail.  So I punched it to death.  Moving quickly, since I didn't want my stuff to despawn, I made it back to my door only to find the skeleton shooting out of it at me.  I snuck up on the door from the side, in the skeleton's blind spot, and opened the door.  Sure enough, the skeleton came out.  After leading it around in a little circle, I darted through the door and closed it.

Stuff in hand, I organized my inventory and made a chest to hold what I really didn't need to be carrying with me.  I opened the door and looked out, but the skeleton seemed to be gone.  I waited the rest of the night, weary of what might happen should I attempt to go back to sleep.  In the morning, I heard the trademark sounds that let me know that the skeleton was still somewhere nearby, experiencing the final moments of its life in agony.

Once the noises stopped, I emerged from my cave and surveyed the area.  Found the bones and arrows dropped by the skeleton, and went back to work on the dungeons.  Drained the water out of the flooded one, then I remembered the clay and went to town with my stone shovel.  I would emerge from both patches of clay carrying four stacks of 64 clay balls, and another stack of 20.  A pretty decent haul, but there was one major problem, something I hadn't experienced in a long time: I was low on coal.

I dropped the clay off in my chest and went back to clear the sand out of the dungeons.  The one that was partially flooded with water contained a zombie spawner, which I stuck some torches next to so it wouldn't be able to spawn anything.  Claimed the two chests, and went to work on the other dungeon, which ended up containing a skeleton spawner.  It only had one chest, but the chest contained, among other things, a green music disc.  I climbed my way back to the surface and remembered I needed coal.

I searched the area for coal, mostly in vain.  I went over to the dark area underneath the floating island to play with the monsters that had spawned there, and in the process got more bones, more arrows, some gunpowder, and more string!  I finally had enough string to make a bow.  I ran back to my cave and crafted that immediately.  It began to get dark at this point.

Remembering what had happened the previous night, I decided to move my bed.  Perhaps my underground location wasn't as secure as I thought.  It seemed to be completely sealed, save for the door which monsters can't open.  After making some adjustments to the cave and moving the bed, I decided to turn in for the night, only to be woken up by a zombie.  I killed it with my sword and tried to go back to sleep, only to be woken up by a second zombie.  "Really?  All I want to do is sleep!" I thought to myself as I killed it.  I hadn't gotten any sleep the previous night due to my encounter with the skeleton, so at this point I was feeling quite tired.

I waited out the night as I smelted a portion of the clay I'd gathered, using up all my remaining coal in the process.  "There's something missing here..." I said to myself.  "Something I haven't done yet that I normally do..."  "Oh yeah, tunnel down into the earth!" the epiphany suddenly came to me.  I only had two stone picks, but I started boring a stairway downwards into the earth, making sure to light it as I went.  The first cave I found was kind of small, but netted a little coal and some iron.  I headed back to the surface, opened my chest, and remembered at that point that the dungeon chests had contained iron ingots.  I left my iron ore, made an iron pick just in case I found something that a stone pick couldn't break, and headed back down my stairway.

Continued my stairway after the first cave, and eventually broke into another cave at the tail end of a coal vein I found because my stairway went directly through it.  This cave was much larger.  I could feel the warmth of the stone around me, so I figured I must be pretty close to bedrock at this point.  Off in the distance I could hear water, so I went to investigate.  Checking my surroundings, I looked up to discover a vein of gold in the ceiling.  "Ah, gold.  Shiny, but relatively useless." I said to myself as I mined it with my iron pick.

Moving on, I found more coal, and some iron.  There was an entire portion of the cave I had yet to explore, but for now, I needed to head back up and deposit my findings in the chest.  When I got back to the surface, I was pleased to note it was daytime.  I headed back over to the dungeons and claimed the chests themselves.  I took them back to my cave so I could store more stuff there.  Since I was apparently unable to attempt any sleep without a rude awakening, I placed my bed inside a chest.  I figured it'll still be useful once I get my true base on the floating island built.

That's all for now, stay tuned for part two!

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