This week, Microsoft’s block-based game for kids that can also teach you how to code turns ten, and it’s announcing something new for its 10th birthday celebration.
If you have kids or you just happen to be a kid at heart, there’s a good chance your familiar with Minecraft, a Microsoft-owned game that lets you build things in a retro-inspired pixelated block-filled world, playing with friends and possibly learning something along the way.
Minecraft has become one of those things that has permeated much of what kids do, and given its availability on practically anything and everything — console, computer, web browser — it’s something families are likely to know all too well.
It’s even one part of Code.org’s tutorials to teach kids to code, with Minecraft Education Edition able to help teach coding through the world of Minecraft to people on computers and tablets.
Ten years on and 176 million copies later, Minecraft has certainly made an impact on the world, and for its tenth anniversary edition, it’s heading somewhere else: the world of augmented reality.
That’s where you’ll find “Minecraft Earth”, a variation of Minecraft being made for iPhone, iPad, and Android that will show the world of Minecraft inside your very own, collecting Minecraft treasure inside the virtual world, while also allowing you to build Minecraft creations using the app in a virtual environment.
You might want to think of Minecraft Earth as what happens when Minecraft meets Pokemon Go, because that’s vaguely what this is.
We’re told Minecraft Earth has been developed for multiplayer, too, so people can actually work together inside the phone app and build together.
A free-to-play title, it’s coming later this year, though there will be a closed beta for folks aged 18 or older to play that you can sign up for ahead of time.
If you’re not able to get into the Minecraft Earth beta, the expectation is for a US summer release, which likely means everyone else will have to wait until late June or July to get an augmented reality Minecraft experience.