Minecraft on PlayStation, Xbox, and Wii U consoles is receiving a free update soon that will add an all new competitive mini-game to the open-world sandbox game. Minecraft: Battle is coming, and Mojang shared the details.
The Battle mini-game for Minecraft will launch as part of a Minecraft update scheduled for June. It’s a last man standing deathmatch mode that lets players find out who has the most skill and luck. Developed by 4J Studios, the mini game will come with three maps at launch with additional maps being released as part of map packs that cost $2.99 each. How many maps and when they will be released were not shared, but Mojang did talk about the mechanics behind the free new mode.
“Battle pits players against one another in a fight for survival, as they race to snatch weapons and resources from chests, dance over each arena’s unique perils and stave off hunger pangs. We’ve made the mini game specifically with console players and couch-based competition in mind: it supports up to four players in splitscreen and eight players online, either by invitation or using the in-game matchmaking system. We wanted it to be super-accessible and fast-paced, so we’ve tried to keep the focus on rapid tactical thinking and combat: there’s no need to craft anything here, and you can loot inventories and equip armour with the tap of a button.
“If you fall to your foe’s blade – don’t despair! You can always respawn as a bat and flutter round your nemesis, squeaking vengefully. Take care to check out the lobby in between games, too. There may be a few surprises to find!”
The initial impression from Battle is a Hunger Games-style game type, which is a popular mode being run on many Minecraft custom player run servers for the PC version. 4J Studios made some subtle changes that will both improve the experience and differentiate Battle from similar gametypes available on the PC. This includes UI changes like a directional hit indicator around the crosshair so players know when they are getting hit from behind or on the side.
Inventory management becomes a major component, as well. Players are limited to the nine slots on their hot bar. This means they can’t just take everything from a chest, and must decide which items they most need to survive to the end and win.
Food still plays a factor in Battle mode, but 4J Studios made slight changes from the standard Minecraft player here, too. Players will regenerate health as long as their Hunger stays above zero. It slowly drains by default, though, which means players will not be able to find a corner and hide in the entire match, or else they will die.
When there are two players left, Minecraft Battle engages a “showdown mode.” This makes the gamertag of both players visible from anywhere on the match to draw them towards one another. The idea is to allow the final two contestants to find one another and prevent the long gaps in matches of trying to find one another and speed up the final battle.
Battle represents just the first Minecraft mini game coming to the PlayStation, Xbox, and Wii U consoles. 4J Studios and Mojang have many more planned for release, though details on what they may be have not been shared. The PC community is rife with these kind of custom mini-games with everything from Hunger Games to parkour challenges. These kinds of mini games are one thing the console edition of Minecraft has been missing and is a nice addition for continued support to one of the best-selling console titles of the past two generations.
[Image via Mojang]