Article by Radenka Kolarov – In this article, we explore how the popular game Minecraft has an influence on and similarities to real life and landscape architecture. The point of Minecraft seems simple: build practically anything you can imagine. Some players recreate famous pieces of architecture; others express their creativity through grand designs. But what makes Minecraft such an irresistible game? Through the unexpected journey that this article will take you on, you are going to find a whole new level of skills and knowledge that lies behind this game. It’s like it was made for landscape architects! Relax with the following playlist that will not leave you indifferent, whether you are a fan of Minecraft or not. WATCH >>> Minecraft Music [Full Playlist] With Download Link!
Game of Minecraft
Here are the Top 10 real-life skills a landscape architect can learn from Minecraft:
10. Survival Ability
One of the very first things you figure out when you enter the game is that the sun is moving, it is getting darker, and you have no shelter. That is the point of landscape architecture: We adjust the environment according to our needs. In the game, we start with the basics — like using nearby tree bole blocks to build a box in which to spend a night. We start with wooden tools and weapons, and wait to get stronger materials later. When it comes to food, this game pretty much respects the primeval story about the domestication of plants, so the first seed that most of us plant is wheat. Interesting, isn’t it?
9. Inspiring Confident Exploration and Teamwork
You can roam through this world and explore without an urgent set of tasks, but most of the time is spent alone. But you can also cooperate with other players. It is an important moment when you realize that one of the best real-life simulation games ever made — with an open, unlimited environment — really does teach us the meaning of teamwork and necessary cooperation. The same applies to creating a landscape design: You are free to make your own mistakes and learn from them on your own, or you can work with others and take their advice and inspiration. Whatever suits you best.
8. Unlimited Imagination Field
If you are creative and turned on by planning and design, an adventure game mode could be your own fairy tale. Since there is no need to carry a weapon, you can fly, and given the unlimited number and shapes of blocks, the only boundary is your imagination. Hanging gardens looks stunning. Take a look! WATCH >>> Minecraft – TOP 50 BEST Creations in Minecraft 2015 / 2016
7. Environmental Awareness
Believe it or not, you can learn about ecology from Minecraft. Of course, these are basic lessons, yet at some point, we all were just beginners. One of the good examples from the game is the problem with fire. We know how much damage fire causes each year, and what it takes to renew a damaged area. So if you carelessly use a flint, even the smallest spark could burn down a forest, same as in real life. After that, the first plants that begin to grow are grassy communities, with the characteristic plants of that area. On the other hand, if you are not careful about how you create and use water elements, don’t be surprised when the flood comes.
6. The Magic is in the Details
As we saw in an article by Win Phyo, landscape architecture’s power is in the details of design. Minecraft teaches us the same. When we arrange the interior or exterior of a place, it is important and worthwhile to take the time to consider what you want to accomplish and accent in your design plan. Wise choice of materials and simply experimenting with all the possibilities of crafting in the game will for sure develop your sense of a good design.
5. Basic Geological Strata Facts
Have you ever thought about how many years it took to create the soil we see today? We speak about billions of years — how amazing is that? In this game, a landscape architect could not only craft and build the stuff he imagines, but even learn about the ground base. On the surface in Minecraft, the basic block is dirt, with the variation of a podzol ground in the taiga biome. Deeper under the surface, we come to igneous rocks such as granite, diorite, and andesite, each with its characteristic color. When it comes to ores, the most common are coal and iron, and as we dig further, the more exciting it gets. The most valuable and elusive blocks are, as you can guess, gold, diamond, obsidian, and lapis lazuli. If you run into an emerald, you are really lucky!4. Diversity of Biomes The 63 different biomes of Minecraft are quite a good opportunity for learning, exploring, and testing one’s survival abilities. As long as you have enough resources and willingness, you can run from a savanna to the jungle across the desert. It is up to you. WATCH >>> Minecraft Biomes
3. Secrets of Planting
Since each biome has its own authentic plants, so do the growing conditions change. In the dry areas, without an irrigation system, you couldn’t even grow plants for food. If you want to have mushrooms in your yard, you certainly must make their preferred conditions, such as a lot of water and space under the ground. In the game, you must even take care of your plants — don’t forget that. Also, check the article Benefits of Trees, by Alexis Alvey, which certainly tells us something new about plants.
2. Global Warming Reminder
Each day, the desert is spreading, and there is nothing you can do to stop it. But you can slow it down with forestation and with other plantings. You can learn about the ways that green infrastructure can solve our global problems in the article Green Infrastructure by Alexis Alvey. At some point, the world we know today will permanently disappear, because the polar ice is melting and the ocean levels increase more and more. Sounds scary? It should, because it is not just a game we are talking about.
1. Sustainability at its Finest
Most important of all the skills you could possibly learn from playing Minecraft is caring for nature and the concern for future generations. Remember that if you cut down all the trees, none will grow up again. If you wait long enough for the plants to grow, you will have even more saplings than you planted, so you can rejuvenate them. Here is the excellent article by Jeanne Connolly that teaches us very important things when it comes to planting design. Same rule for all the components — use them responsibly and always give back to nature.
Craft for all Ages
Back to the question we posed at the beginning: What is so special about this game of Minecraft? With every step, you can learn something new, starting with the basics, such as orientation to the north, and moving on to the most magnificent building skills and abilities, biological facts, and survival tips. If you haven’t already played this game, don’t delay. The adventure is waiting. We’d love to hear your views on this. Let us know in the comment section below!
- Becoming an Urban Planner: A Guide to Careers in Planning and Urban Design by Michael Bayer
- Sustainable Urbanism: Urban Design With Nature by Douglas Farrs
- eBooks by Landscape Architects Network
Article by Radenka Kolarov