Wednesday, March 30, 2016

ticking time bomb

I started keeping watch at night.

Especially over the temple, because I wanted to know when and where the mobs were coming from. I was rewarded one night when I was looking down at it from the top of one of the buildings and saw several zombies and skeletons magically appear all at once around that area. Of course some of them burned up in the morning, but I saw a skeleton duck into one of the temple wings. I also noticed a glow in the distance to keep in mind to check out later.

The next morning I checked out the temple area and didn't see the skeleton, then ran around thinking while I did chores.

I obviously need to double the fence and light the place up a lot more, which means I'm going to need lots more wood and coal. And if I'm going to save the village, I may as well make it more livable, because this really is pathetic. Even if villagers were around, there is so little here that they'd barely subsist. What can I do to change that? I teleported back and forth grabbing tools and supplies from all my other scattered chests, but once I cleaned them out, I just took over the library and made it base camp, got rid of the tables and started a mine shaft.

And again, the mobs around the temple in this next vid. Something about the temple, and I'd better get serious in a hurry because 3 creepers??? Right there??? (Temples have loot and I don't want mobs accidentally blowing it up before I can get to it- wiki) And as I watched, 2 more skeletons just appeared at 1:43. At 4:23 you can see another hole fairly close to a temple wing where a creeper had nearly gotten me, so basically it's down to a clear stand off between me and them over the temple, and if I don't do something soon, the scales will tip and gaping holes will take over. Take a good last look, because this town is about to change drastically.

I'm actually wondering right now what the odds are of generating a new world seed where I worldspawn this close to a desert temple. Some people look for those and can't even find them, and I ran into one next biome over out of boredom... So I got to thinking that if I do fix up Starrstrukk and upload it to share down the road, maybe I'll keep the temple intact with a thriving village community around it, and then other players can blow themselves up trying to get to the loot, lol. But it occurred to me that perhaps temples are like ticking time bombs. If there is a level underneath that is dark and has the room, what's to stop mobs spawning down there like they do in caves? So I looked around and immediately found this thread, same word I used in search- 'desert temples spontaneously explode minecraft'. Desert temples spontaneously explode? I guess I'll just stick to my plan for now and see what happens. If I'm lucky, I'll have video running when it explodes.

Sunday, March 27, 2016

saving the temple

Yeah, seeing that spider mock me first thing...  You don't have to bore yourself through the whole vid, but the first few seconds are gold.

This next is a ridiculously long vid capture because I forgot I was recording, but my indecision is very apparent. I came so close to abandoning the village, still felt forlorn and lost and couldn't decide what direction to take any kind of plan, until...

About 9 minutes in, I had that moment. It was almost like a baptism into the decision, quite literally going down into a dark water hole, spying the coal blocks, and suddenly feeling the fire come back into me. When I emerged from that hole, I was facing the village, and that's about as close as I've come to a spiritual experience on minecraft so far. This is MY village now, and I'm definitely going to take ownership. And after that I ran almost directly to that temple and looked around it while I was thinking about what my next set of steps should be. I'm glad I kept the vid because it hadn't occurred to me before to record what it was really like in there before I lit it up. Btw, this is the last long vid. I'm going to pay more attention in future to great swaths of time passing.

I couldn't help noticing before I put the torches up in and around the temple that those really dark stalls lining the inside walls were probably awesome spawn points for mobs, because it was so terribly dark in there. The temple was like a specialized cave for spawning evil or something. Anyway, as far as cultural artifacts go, it's still pretty cool, so I decided I want to save the temple, too. A structure like that can also be converted to a holding area or a barn, saving that idea for future reference in case I get ambitious. -Oopsie, I decided to look it up, guess I'd better be really careful breaking blocks in there. Desert temple and Defeating temples

But once I'd slept on it, both in singleplayer and irl, I felt better about learning so much so fast, and decided to keep practicing. Learn new building skills, keep learning my fencing and area lighting skills, make this an awesome little town.

Also, that is a cool temple. And it's looking really dark over there. I need to find a way to save it before a stupid creeper blows it up.

Saturday, March 26, 2016


Did you watch the video in that last post? Good. Now the crying begins. I was mostly bewildered at first, although it didn't take long to figure out what happened.

I was so tickled yesterday to find the village. I am so devastated today to realize MY PRESENCE got them all killed and part of the town blown up. I'm wandering around a ghost town feeling depressed and sad and kicking myself for being so stupid. I was going to be this cool person making stuff better, and I made it worse.

I halfheartedly started fixing a building and throwing torches up, but mostly spent the day feeling just awful. As the day moved along I began to realize I'd only seen 3 villagers anyway, a librarian, a cleric, and a weapons manufacturer. There was only one tiny garden plot. The place was barren already when I arrived, because they were barely existing.

I went back over the last two videos, noticing more stuff. I know I inspired the librarian to leave the safety of the library when it wasn't safe yet, and I saw him get killed for it (yesterday's video). I completely missed the skeleton skulking in the forge and the witch on the mountain because I was so tired. I never looked back when I heard creepers blow up behind me as I was running through town that first time, so it was obviously my fault the buildings got blown up, even though I'd led other creepers out of town. What are my options? Is this village still worth saving?

I made a mental list of all the reasons it would be good to save the village, and right at the top was I can /tp to the library and use that building as my next work station, plus being in a real building is a step up from living in bunkers, a tunnel, and a cave. Also, I've got wheat growing right there, I can convert that tiny garden to all wheat and make easy bread in a pinch, so no more having to chop wood hoping for apples when I'm starving, no more running across fields chasing down animals. Those are still options, but now I don't have to rely on working so hard just to eat.

I think it's going to be ok.

So, make a PLAN. Obviously need fencing and way more torches, and I think I'll reconstruct that tower differently.

And the next time I find a village LEAVE THEM ALONE. Start building the fence further away during the day and slowly establish the perimeter without drawing any attention at all to villagers. Once I've got that set up, the next step is lighting up all the buildings and dark areas with torches. Then, and ONLY then, go in and check out the village. Gotta get those mobs controlled first.

I don't have a lot of experience with villagers yet, even being in multiplayer and other realms. I've always just ignored them for the most part. But this is singleplayer. This is personal. Also, they are an easy labor force once gardens are set up.

And while I'm at it, I'm taking over Witch Mountain, too. I'm still super ticked off about losing all my stuff. All I had to do was hit F3 and F2 while I was dying. Note made.

Friday, March 25, 2016

my first village

You know you're getting bored when you go outside on killing sprees in the dark without any armor on.

I ran my fenceline a few times because you never can tell, right? Zombies don't burn up when it's raining, so that's a good time to find out if zombies are still spawning on property or getting in somewhere.

Once I was satisfied I wouldn't be attacked in my own yard any more, I ventured beyond the fence again and started playing tag with creepers. A couple of them converged right behind me as I was running away and blew up such a big hole together that I stocked up on all kinds of blocks, and after a couple of sample swings with my pickaxe, BOOYA, hit all kinds of coal and iron ore right under my feet. Thanx, little buddies! Keeping that maneuver tucked away for future dig plans, sure saved me a whole lot of work.

And then I made more torches and armor through the night, stocked up on weapons and food, and took off toward the sunrise across the desert the next morning. I ran and ran and ran, playing dodge with creepers and stomping spiders. And then I kept running. Time to see what's on the other side of all these mountains of sand. Naturally, Horse With No Name was running through my head the entire time...

And o.m.g., someone has really done that. Bless them. Please to enjoy before I continue my story.

I was so spaced out running through the desert that I was surprised to suddenly find myself at the edge of it, and dang if there wasn't a village! Woohoo! My first village! And I've learned a pretty good lesson, always get a screen grab of something of interest just in case you're suddenly killed in a few seconds, because you might wanna /tp back to those coordinates.

I was so thrilled. One of the first things I did was run up to the top of the tower and get the coordinates. This is looking back on the direction where I was just standing in the last pic.

I ran around meetin' and greetin', learning the local dialect (I could tell they were disappointed that I didn't have the stuff they wanted to trade), and then I ran out to one of the hills for a quick look around before running back to spend the night with the librarian. The view was lovely.

Looking back at the village.

I was shocked at the savagery going on through the night in that quiet little village. Mobs ran racket and beat the doors, and I couldn't believe what I was seeing out the windows. Clearly these villagers needed me... I started making plans to /tp back and forth bringing stuff to fix up the place, but I'll tell you right now, NEVER let yourself get that tired irl and that out of health in survival mode and then get impatient and open the door to a whole herd of zombies because a villager keeps staring at you through all that scary noise like I was expecting a hero...

I must throw in a note from the real me keeping this log- This entire journey was done on no brain at all. I had just sent a 2 1/2 year old home that I'd kept for several hours (on top of going to the dentist), and I was soooo wiped out, so everything you're seeing here is pure noob, and I'm so glad I recorded this because it turns out to be a documentary and the only proof it ever even happened. All of this is me running around meeting villagers and stuff, not even thinking about the consequences of my idiot actions, and then near the end I run on to the next hill to shear sheep. You'll love the really stupid way I die at the end. I was so mad. I had been carrying SO. MUCH. STUFF. (gah, all those fences and torches!), and by the time I got back to that hill it was all ~*gone*~. But let's let this video tell the story...

Next time I'm staggering around like that on the edge of death, I'm getting a screen shot of my coordinates in my last few seconds of life. I combed that hill and never got one thing back.

Thursday, March 24, 2016

outwitting the mobs

Don't laugh. I really am trying to do this without reading all the wikis and forums and stuff. I know the mobs are just different algorithms and there are tricks to dealing with them, but I'm going for the real life experience here. And man, has it ever been stoopid.

First of all, that fence got blown up by a creeper in broad daylight within minutes of putting it up. That's when it hit me that every single time I have been building a FENCE, a creeper has suddenly showed up and destroyed my stuff. It happened at my first tunnel, it's the whole reason I have a glass ceilinged bunker in the meadow, and now it's happening in the next hollow over. I think I'm getting the hang of this. The closer a creeper gets to me, the more likely it will blow up (although they've blown up stuff while I'm not there, too, really dumb coming back to holes), so I'm learning to #1- RUN and #2- RUN TO WHERE I'D RATHER HAVE A HOLE, which is basically away from the fence. I never stay near a fence very long, and I'm learning to light my fence lines up so mobs won't spawn right there at the fences. Fences attract mobs.

I also got stoopid and started charging mobs at night again. I keep losing armor. I work really hard finding that iron ore, and then I go on killing sprees and just throw it away, like here guys, have some of my armor, good fight, thanx. And then I have to go mining again and find some more ore and make some more armor.

I'm getting really good at duck and cover, though. I was down in the cavern next to the bunker (it's huuuuge), ran right into a sweet coal vein, and never got killed once in there. I started mimicking the skeletons, peeking around blocks, dive rolling to the next block set across the hallway, check it, I'm a coal mining rock star. And thank goodness I ran into some more iron pockets.

After that coal strike, I was able to get my fields lit up a bit more. Yes, this is a creeper blowout, right at my door, very first night I tunneled back up and out.

And then the real work began, because this is just unacceptable. If that were a creeper I'd be tweezing glass out of my eyes by now.

This is a visual summary of what I was doing, mostly experimenting with fencing and lighting and then watching to see what works so I won't come home to more destruction. That little zombie kid watching me in full gear (1:20) cracks me up, he makes the cutest tiny little growly noises, sorry the sound doesn't work. At 5 minutes in, I was running outside perimeter and decided to turn an old creeper hole into a water trap. Anything going into that water won't be coming back out. (If you ever want to turn flow off in a water block, just sink a block of gravel into it.) 6:30- I get a LOT of mobs coming up this beach, the top of the fence line in a few seconds has been blown up several times whether I'm around or not.

I had a chicken following me around for awhile. I thought it was cute trying to get inside.

Finally finding enough coal for all those torches and lighting up my fields has held down the mobs big time, so I'm becoming confident enough to run around in the dark without getting killed all the time. And as I secure my perimeters, I once again start feeling that urge to go explore some more...

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Day 60

You guys probably thought I croaked off again and gave up, didn't you? Or started really cheating in /gamemode 1 or something. Nope, I turned into a mine rat for awhile and lost track of time. Kinda became obsessed with seeing if I could tunnel on through here and there, popping back out once in awhile to chop a tree so I could make a new chest to dump blocks in or make new tools.

Then I wanted to see how deep I could go.

This is -92 blocks below sea level. Yes, you see all the torches, ran into several veins of coal and iron ore. In the distance you can see both lava and water.

Once in awhile I'd stop and check what biome I was in, then tunnel back up and get more chests and a crafting table and furnace set up for whenever I'd want to go out up there. One thing I learned while I was mining- always carry a door with you. You never know when  you'll want to block off possible attack, and as flimsy as doors look, I've never yet had mobs break through them. I've read that can happen in the super hard level, so if you're addicted to heart attacks, there you go.

Side note- I'm getting really sick of diorite. Cobblestone is boring, but at least you can do things with it, like make fences and stairs and slabs, or cook it up into harder stone and stone brick blocks that look nice. Diorite just looks like someone's floor went crazy. About its only saving grace to me is its hardness, which makes it pretty good for building stuff, but as feldspars go, it's a little hard on the eyes when you see way too much of it.

After my mining spree it was nice getting back out to the sky, but you can see I still have a problem...

Thursday, March 17, 2016

my first bed

Ta-da! That's right, I ran into a little more iron and made a pair of shears so I could scalp a few sheep wandering through.

And it came in handy almost immediately. Stupid little zombie kid totally killed me in my little pond, and even though it wasn't that deep and I ran right back for my stuff, I lost my iron breastplate, and those take 8 bars of iron to make. I was so ticked off at that kid. And srsly, where'd he come from? I have yet to see one villager, and this zombie villager kid shows up.

That's over by my new field bunker. My first tunnel is on the outermost coast, my bed is in the cave bunker next hill over, and this field is on the other side of that hill. Check it, a creeper blew up there and I lined it with granite and glassed it over.

And then just beyond the pond is a sudden drop into a deep hole. A sheep I'd just sheared fell right off and died, and there was no way I was going to waste the meat so I had to find a way down in the dangerous dark. The next day I made the stairs.

And if I want cattle, I run across a little strip of desert over to the edge of that next biome, and there I also discovered acacia trees. All I've had so far where I am is birch and oak. I also ran into sugarcane along a river twisting through the desert.

I still haven't figured out how to record game sound yet, even though I figured out the mic. I love just standing in my field bunker during the rain, it's very soothing. I want to record a long version to play as a screensaver with ambient background noise when I figure the sound out. Before I got my extra torches up I'd see red spider eyes peering at me over the edge.

Oh, wow, thought I'd deleted this one. You can see that little zombie snot kill me, and then later I realized I also lost my shears when I was running past all those sheep. I was ticked for a long time after that respawn.

Saturday, March 12, 2016


I turned cheats on when I first set up my Starrstrukk singleplayer, even though I want to see how long I can last in survival mode. I seem to be doing ok, and will obviously be able to continue like this now even in what seems like a pretty barren area.

I've reached a point, though, where I'm wondering what is possible, what's available, and if I can check on this, right? I mean, I can see stats options and F3 location stuff, but I can't see what's out there unless I am literally moving around on it. I have a friend who knows all the cheats and does all the cool stuff, but I'm still pretty new and really don't care right now about throwing potion in a witch's face. What I would like to see is how far it is to another biome or where the next nearest good cave system is.

So I switched to /gamemode 1 and flew around a little bit. Hitting the space bar a couple of times launched me up (holding shift brings me back down), and while I'm flying around I don't have to worry about death by mobs or drowning or lava or falling. (Yes, I've been an idiot and gone back to survival mode in ridiculous situations and then died, lol.) Along the way I can check my location stats and put the coordinates in my notes, as long as I remember not to /tp there in /gamemode 0 so I won't fall to my death. After I go back I can descend, /gamemode 0, and then get the /tp coordinates again.

One note about /tp coordinates- landscapes can change. Endermen sometimes move blocks around for no reason, and creepers roll around blowing up every little bit. Keep this in mind for the next section, too. As you mine out a cavern, it can also change because the underground regenerates blocks here and there, so if you leave an area for a long time, it's possible to /tp back into solid block or fall when you get there.

After that I switched to /gamemode 3. I really should have tried to come up in the middle of that spider. About 3:10 into this I was getting into position standing on a real block so I could get the coordinates and come back later to mine that coal. Sometimes very deep caves near lava will also have other ores with diamonds, gold, and redstone, besides iron. I eventually want to make enchanted diamond armor to wear so I can survive way more stuff.

Wo, nearly fell to my death there at 4:59. You'd have gotten to see me respawn and go back for all my stuff. Oh, well. I really need to make a sheep shear so I can get wool and make a bed. You can carry beds around with you and set respawn points so you don't have to /back or /tp all the way back to where you were when you died, because when you die you lose all your stuff and it just all sits around until creepers and other mobs come by and pick it up.

I'm finding that I really like sand. I found out in multiplayer that sandstone makes a really beautiful construction block for patios and stuff, very Greek, and sand makes glass blocks and glass window panes, which you can tint to all kinds of colors. That last bit at 6:00 in the video would be a good spot for a sandstone house. I grew up in the desert southwest near the Four Corners, plus I lived in Phoenix for awhile, so I can visualize how to construct a nice bungalow in the desert with a pool and a rock garden, terraces, maybe an aqueduct.

In the meantime, I need to go back and get that coal.

Friday, March 11, 2016

about 6 weeks in

I need binoculars. And an observation tower. But lookit, see those torches over on yon hill? That be me asploring!

Yeah, ok, I'll stop the weird yap. Now this is looking back to where I was just standing. What else do you do with tons of cobblestone? Think about it- the chests only hold so much, you can't just throw it away or dump it off. You can make stacks of it to just sit there so it'll at least quit hogging chest space, or you can use it. (I see no reason to make more chests just to dump off cobblestone, srsly.)

Honestly, I've been using stone tools almost exclusively since I discovered I could do so much anyway with my bare hands, and I've been able to take on mobs just fine with them. Check it, I've only died twice so far.

I'm standing on a really nice hill right now, wooded and way more access to wandering animals and a field nearby for planting. Looking out you can see I'm still surrounded by a whole lotta sand, though.

So basically, this little wooded hill I'm standing on is like a grassy knell just between desert and ocean biomes or something. I haven't been checking my F3 coordinates.

My mobs stats say I've killed 6 skeletons, 13 spiders, 6 zombies, 5 pigs, 10 cows,  and 1 chicken. I love seeing the stat report line, "You have never been killed by a chicken." lol

So I made a little fortified road over to the wooded hill for faster travel. Sand hopping is fine, but there's just nothing else to do but dodge arrows and creepers, plus I needed to get some cobblestone out of my way.

Ok, check it, this next shot is under the wooded hill, and you can see from the readout that I'm in the Forest Hills and that this is day 47 in minecraft days. You can also see a couple of doors that close the entries to tunnels I've made going straight out west and north. (The stairs on the left go up to the road I made.)

My west and east tunnels both wound up with me just over my head in ocean, which I had to block off. The north tunnel seems to run completely under water and I can't tell if I'm going to break through so I just stopped for now. Ran into a sweet load of coal along the way, though, so not a write off at all.

You actually got the most boring parts. You didn't see me nearly drowning and running for my life and desperately throwing out cobblestone fence over my shoulder. Cobblestone fence is pretty awesome. Always carry some with you.

Wo, I feel so Egyptian right now... My tunnel is perfectly lined up with the celestial bodies in the heavens.

I was going to show you what I did, but it was night and I wound up attacked instead. Actually, it's an excellent exhibition of how well that piece of cobblestone works because I wound up on the other side of it and you totally get a great demonstration while I'm trying not to die.

This is the moon going down over the opposite tunnel now, facing west. That first piece of rock block is cobblestone fence.

I've discovered in other realms that water won't touch cobblestone fence and you can build dams with it. Might have to keep this spot in mind for experimentation later.

Thursday, March 10, 2016


Right after I wrote that last one, I sprinted out to the nearest cavern straight down the hillside from my back door. That area is just riddled with creepers and skeletons, but I finally had a clear spot between thunderstorms and figured the key is keep moving. Didn't even see the creeper I must've jumped over down into the little cavern and the observer watching me actually jumped in her chair when it blew up behind me, but I was still on the move and didn't get hurt.

My pickaxe flew like #allthemobs were about to spawn right on top of me, and within seconds I hit a jackpot of coal. Not just a few blocks, more like at least 12. And then I hit iron, omg, I just kept whacking away into the dark like a crazed maniac, and when I couldn't see any more I /tp'd back into my tunnel so fast that I had to stand there and breathe for a few seconds. Then I got to work. And here you see me back in some armor holding a torch, yay!

Not again. Ok, this is a real problem. Must've happened while I was gone.

So I patched it up and sprinted around setting torches up as fast as I could, just in time.

Crossing my fingers I am finally over that threshold of barely scraping by in the dark. It's been at least 3 mc weeks now, if not a month. I'm losing count. I should have been making notches on one of my chests or something. Oh, well.

Wednesday, March 9, 2016

spawn renovation probs

And I'm learning not to plant trees too close together or let them get too big. Evidently, mobs can spawn anywhere light can't reach, and a creeper totally spawned inside my tiny little acre and blew up just outside my door.

Looks like a brilliant motivate to renovate construction jingle, doesn't it, just *boom* and we'll have that basement area all ready to go for you. So I bricked it over, plowed a tunnel through from my mine downstairs, and there we go, instant roofed storage room.

After that I spent another entire day and night chopping all the trees down making sure nothing else could spawn inside my fence line right away. One knot of trees had grown so massive that about 4 of them, even planted spread out, had grown together, and I had to build 2 different platforms about 5 blocks high just to reach it all.

After that it started raining and I got bored thinking it would never stop (and rain evidently keeps skeletons from burning up in the sunrise, last thing I need right now is another death from a skeleton), so spent a little time renovating the tunnel. I had already started figuring out how to maximize light while I'm living with a serious lack of torches- just whiten everything up! Since the floor was already diorite, I used birch for the walls. I feel like I'm in a cow barn or decked out like Cruella DeVille or something, but it works great. I may be able to risk carrying a couple of my torches around with me now.

It's really not that bad.

At least I can see now. You wouldn't believe how much work I do in semi-permanent darkness.

But clearly I need to go on a very serious coal seeking mission now. I've wasted about 3 mc days just because that creeper spawned right on top of me and blew up my yard.