How Minecraft Got Better Combat

This is The Mechanic, where Alex Wiltshire invites a developer to help him put their game up on blocks and take a wrench to hack out one its features, just to see how it works.

“I feel that combat got quite boring over the long term, it mainly felt like monsters were standing in your way.” For a long time, Minecraft’s combat has been, well, not exactly premium. Clicky clicky clicky. Swords flailing at air, the basic principle behind combat being the player who clicks most wins most.

For its lead developer Jens Bergensten, it was time for change in the form of Minecraft 1.9, the Combat Update, which released on February 29. “The combat system wasn’t very interesting and we simply wanted to give it a little bit more variation,” he tells me. But how could he design something that would be accepted by Minecraft’s huge playerbase, work with Minecraft’s networking system, and be as playable on touchscreens as mouse and keyboard? The answer was…

THE MECHANIC: Timing

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