A useful starting guide to Minecraft: Pocket Edition!

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The premium-priced Minecraft: Pocket Edition! has proved something of a success for Microsoft, but if you're anything like me you've been left scratching your head as to what Minecraft is all about and about how much of this teenage craze is playable on a mere phone. Turns out quite a bit, and I'm linking here to a useful beginners guide over at Conversations.

From my initial launch story:

...Minecraft is a whole other industry in itself. There are multiple clients for multiple platforms, there are thousands of web sites dedicated to it and.... most people playing it are under 18 years old. Making me several generations away from the target audience. However, it's now out and it runs on 512MB RAM Windows Phones, so teenagers can join in the blocky world to their heart's content.

I won't insult Minecraft players by trying to take my own baby steps in the world, so see these promo images instead:

Screenshot, Minecraft

Yes, everything really does look this blocky - this is how it works!

Screenshot, Minecraft

Don't expect to create moody caverns yourself on a phone - these creations have taken skilled block artists many tens of hours on a big screen!

And now, from the beginner's guide to Minecraft: Pocket Edition!:

For the uninitiated, the world of Minecraft can be both expansive and daunting. But if you know how to master the game or at least know the essentials, you’ll be building an entire kingdom in no time.

1. A game of two halves

Minecraft: Pocket Edition has two methods of play.


Creative mode is where you can jump straight into a world, fully equipped with everything you’d possibly need to start creating.

Want to build a small wooden hut? Just use the limitless wooden planks in your inventory without the need to chop down trees. Want something a bit more grand? Use the infinite number of glass blocks, stone bricks and glowstones and head to the seas for your underwater palace.

In Survival mode you start with empty pockets and you must earn your much-needed possessions. Need wood, stone, wool, or gold? You’ll need to find it the old-fashioned way–by collecting it.

Beware, it’s not called Survival mode for nothing. There are plenty of nasties out there looking to get you. Stay clear of the spiders, endermen, creepers and zombies. If they get you, you’ll lose everything you’ve collected, and you will have to harvest/farm/mine them again.

For the rest of the guide, we’ll assume you’re playing in survival mode as you don’t really need any help in the creative mode.

2. Seize (or should that be size) control

Depending on the Lumia you have, you may want to change the size of the D-Pad. For instance, the Lumia 1520‘s six-inch display might provide a D-Pad big enough for most people, but the Lumia 532‘s four-inch screen may require you adjust the controls a bit.

Thankfully, game options include the ability to increase the size of the D-Pad from small to huge. Play around with the slider-bar until you find the perfect one for you.


There's plenty more in the guide here, taking you through your first few 'days' in the Minecraft world on Windows Phone. Comments? Have you played Minecraft on mobile? Or, like me, are you at least 40 years too old for all this?(!)

You can grab Minecraft: Pocket Edition here in the Windows Phone Store

Source / Credit: Conversations