VGHVI Minecraft: February 26, 2015

Mar 22 2015

I actually don’t have any pictures from the January Minecraft session: people weren’t doing much building. But I took a few from February; first, some wandering around:

A rock grotto with a mushroom

A rock grotto with a mushroom

Looking up at a window filled with water

Looking up at a window filled with water

Hello, rabbit

Hello, rabbit

Looking up with the rabbit

Looking up with the rabbit

Miranda did some work on the castle in the desert; I don’t remember exactly what was there before, so I’m not sure which parts were new. (Other than the lilypads.) Probably the tops of walls?

Working on the desert castle

Working on the desert castle

Snow transitioning to rain above one of the towers

Snow transitioning to rain above one of the towers

Lilypads

Lilypads in the pool

No responses yet

VGHVI Minecraft: December 18, 2014

Dec 31 2014

I don’t have a lot of pictures from the December Minecraft session, because Miranda had some studying to do so she couldn’t build stuff. But Patrick was there, and he did build stuff: he found a bay that reminded him (and us!) of Porco Rosso, and he build a little house there.

The Porco Rosso bay

The Porco Rosso bay

A closer view of the beach with the house above it

A closer view of the beach with the house above it

Squids cavorting nearby

Squids cavorting nearby

I went wandering around a bit after that and took some more pictures:

Some nearby scenery

Some nearby scenery

A winding river

A winding river

Water high and low

Water high and low

Looking down into the crevasse

Looking down into the crevasse

These clouds should be in a tetris-like game

These clouds should be in a tetris-like game

And then I came back to take a few more pictures of how Patrick had evolved the bay:

This is just here to remind me of the coordinates

This is just here to remind me of the coordinates

Extending the beach

Extending the beach

Planting flowers

Planting flowers

We first started this Minecraft world four years ago; lots of good memories.

No responses yet

VGHVI Minecraft: November 20, 2014

Dec 06 2014

Pictures from the November Minecraft session:

First, the obligatory “wander around the world” pictures:

A tower at sunset

A tower at sunset

This isn't a rendering glitch, there really was a strange square island in the middle of the sea

This isn’t a rendering glitch, there really was a strange square island in the middle of the sea

A small cave entrance surrounded by animals

A small cave entrance surrounded by animals

A mountain with lava at the corner

A mountain with lava at the corner

Cliff caves on the water

Cliff caves on the water

Inside one of the caves

Inside one of the caves

Inside another one; yay weird physics

Inside another one; yay weird physics

A village at night

A village at night

For most of this year, Dan’s just been building a straight path; so I went to visit him and then started walking back along the path. (And then stopped, because the path is way too long for me to go along the whole thing.)

Dan's path continues

Dan’s path continues

A floating mountain with lava off to the side

A floating mountain with lava off to the side

Weird trees at the base of the mountain

Weird trees at the base of the mountain

Going back over the desert

Going back over the desert

Going back over the water

Going back over the water

Coming into land

Coming into land

Figuring out just how far away from home I am

Figuring out just how far away from home I am

A place where the path had to cut through a mountain

A place where the path had to cut through a mountain

A thread of lava at night

A thread of lava at night

Then I went to check on the hall that Miranda had started last time:

Finishing off the ceiling and walls

Finishing off the ceiling and walls

Adding some trees and flowers

Adding some trees and flowers

Here's the top of the tree

Here’s the top of the tree

A chest

A chest

A secret water door

A secret water door

Adding paintings at the entrance

Adding paintings at the entrance

The explanation for the secret water door is this: last time, she’d dug into what turned out to be a pretty cool cave at the back of the hall. So she wanted to leave access to that while maintaining the hall as a hall. She ended up with a really neat solution: she added a pool of water in the hall, with the entrance to the cave at the bottom of the pool, done in such a way that Minecraft‘s water physics allows you to go into the cave from the water without the water flooding the cave. (And it really is secret, even though the pool isn’t too huge, it’s very hard to find the door if you don’t know where to go.)

We’ll be doing Minecraft a week early this month, December 18th instead of December 25th.

Comments Off

VGHVI Minecraft: October 30, 2014

Nov 15 2014

Pictures from the October Minecraft session:

First, the usual wandering around:

A cliff on the edge of water in the rain

A cliff on the edge of water in the rain

An abandoned foundation; I think I've seen this before, but it's been a while

An abandoned foundation; I think I’ve seen this before, but it’s been a while

One of the structures in the bay turned into a floating glowing ball

One of the structures in the bay turned into a floating glowing ball

Pat built a sort of ice chapel. I think it’s near the ice house he built the previous month, but I’m not entirely sure?

The top of the ice chapel

The top of the ice chapel

Looking up at the ice chapel ceiling

Looking up at the ice chapel ceiling

The floor of the chapel

The floor of the chapel

Another view of the inside

Another view of the inside

Looking out from the roof

Looking out from the roof

An outside view of the chapel

An outside view of the chapel

And Miranda decided to build a hall using some of the new stone types that were recently added. She hollowed out a hill not too far from the spawn point but in a direction we hadn’t explored much.

A hall with green and pink stone

A hall with green and pink stone

A view of the ceiling

A view of the ceiling

The entrance, made out of glass

The entrance, made out of glass

An outside view at night

An outside view at night

Adding a light on top of the entrance

Adding a light on top of the entrance

After that, she decided to expand it more, making a larger space inside with some blue stone as the ceiling.

Thinking about how to expand it

Thinking about how to expand it

Starting to hollow out the new area; you can see bits of the new ceiling

Starting to hollow out the new area; you can see bits of the new ceiling

More work on the new area

More work on the new area

While she was doing that, she ran into a cave, so I went and explored that.

A cave in the back of the hall

A cave in the back of the hall

It keeps going.  (I could have taken a lot of pictures like this, it was a decent-size cave.)

It keeps going. (I could have taken a lot of pictures like this, it was a decent-size cave.)

An exit at the back of the cave

An exit at the back of the cave

A view from outside the cave

A view from outside the cave

As you can see, the back of the cave was fairly close to the lava and water sculpture that Pat had built in August; we didn’t realize that it was so close to her hall! (Though it wasn’t that close, the cave was a decent length.)

One response so far

VGHVI Minecraft: September 25, 2014

Oct 18 2014

Not as many pictures as normal from the September Minecraft session: Miranda couldn’t attend, and I didn’t take as many pictures as I should have of my exploration. But here’s what I have:

Patrick did some wandering around, until he came across a rather lovely snow forest with huge trees. We all went over to look, and then he built a house there.

Snow forest

Snow forest

Digging out the foundation for the house

Clearing snow off of the foundation for the house

The house in the snow

The house in the snow

The front of the house

The front of the house

Inside the house

Inside the house

I poked my head around the forest, and saw a narrow crevasse behind it with a bit of lava; I went down there, and it was amazing! Just the crevasse itself opened up nicely, but there was also a mine passage at one end where you could squeeze by a bit of lava and then end up in an enormous underground system of caverns and mines. It’s pretty amazing what’s sometimes just under the surface in Minecraft.

Unfortunately, I didn’t actually take any pictures of that system. But here are some pictures of the entrance.

The crevasse behind the house

The crevasse behind the house

Water and lava inside the crevasse

Water and lava inside the crevasse

Here's the passage leading to the system of caverns

Here’s the passage leading to the system of caverns

One response so far

VGHVI Minecraft: August 28, 2014

Sep 21 2014

Pictures from the August Minecraft session:

I decided to go on a spin on the tracks for old time’s sake. It mostly worked, though there were a few areas where I had to do some repairs.

Glitches next to the track

Glitches next to the track

This duck was waiting patiently beside the track every time I went past this spot.

This duck was waiting patiently beside the track every time I went past this spot.

And Miranda decided to improve the desert castle that she’d discovered a couple of months back:

This is what it had looked like

This is what it had looked like

Now the inner wall is complete

Now the inner wall is complete

A view of the front gate

A view of the front gate

The main new work this time, though, was one of Pat’s: water and lava streaming down from way up high.

Lava and water going down

Lava and water going down

The view from above

The view from above

It looks even better at night

It looks even better at night

A bit lower at night

A bit lower at night

Looking up from the middle

Looking up from the middle

Looking down from the middle

Looking down from the middle

Lava and water collecting at the bottom

Lava and water collecting at the bottom

Comments Off

VGHVI Minecraft: July 31, 2014

Aug 16 2014

I didn’t take a lot of pictures during the July Minecraft session, but here’s what I got:

Roger was there, working on his cathedral:

The current state of the cathedral

The current state of the cathedral

Roger building up the walls

Roger building up the walls

And a random photo I took while wandering around:

Hello, Donkey

Hello, Donkey

But the main thing that happened was that Miranda built an ice tower:

Starting work on the ice tower

Starting work on the ice tower

Working on the ice tower's upper walls

Working on the ice tower’s upper walls

The completed ice tower

The completed ice tower

Side view of the tower

Side view of the tower

Inside the upper level

Inside the upper level

Looking up from the lower level

Looking up from the lower level

Looking out through the walls

Looking out through the walls

Comments Off

VGHVI Minecraft: June 19, 2014

Jul 13 2014

Pictures from the June Minecraft session:

I decided that it might be nice to start connecting various structures to the city, so I started building a path to some of the nearby structures. It currently doesn’t look that great; I still think it’s a reasonable idea, but I’m not entirely sure how to best improve it?

My first attempt at a road

My first attempt at a road

A deep pit I discovered near the road

A deep pit I discovered near the road

A pass through some rock

A pass through some rock

Miranda worked on a stable some and then went wandering around as well:

Miranda and her horse

Miranda and her horse

Working on her stable

Working on her stable

She went in a different direction from me, and discovered some things that I was completely unaware of. The first is a building outline; I can’t remember the details of where it was:

A building outline

A building outline

Maybe it’s connected to something else I already knew about? And the second is a quite impressive castle in the desert; we had some discussion as to whether it was procedurally generated or something that somebody had worked on but not finished and decided that it was probably the latter, e.g. there’s this inner wall that looks like something a human had begun. It already looks quite good, at any rate.

Desert castle from above

Desert castle from above

The front towers

The front towers

Her horse accompanied her on the trip

Her horse accompanied her on the trip

She laid out a series of torches so we could find our way back; maybe that’s a better idea than my roads? Nice to have an idea of the geography in a different direction from where I’d been going.

One response so far

VGHVI Minecraft: May 29, 2014

Jun 14 2014

I don’t have many pictures from the May Minecraft session, because Miranda couldn’t participate and we were mostly talking instead of building. But I did go fly to the chimney at the end of the tunnel I built in April, and took some pictures along the way.

Looking down at the top of the chimney in the water

Looking down at the top of the chimney in the water

A rock shelter in a bay

A rock shelter in a bay

Clouds at sunset

Clouds at sunset

Leviathans wander through the swamp at sunset

Leviathans wander through the swamp at sunset

Lava at night

Lava at night

Looking down at the path of the tunnel as it goes through a cavern

Looking down at the path of the tunnel as it goes through a cavern

Comments Off

Guitar Status: May 18, 2014

May 18 2014

My guitar practice has gotten into a better rhythm than last time I talked about it. I’m not sure I’m practicing more, but I’m enjoying it more and feeling I’m getting more out of it. Basically, I’ve realized that I wasn’t getting as much as I could have out of the game’s “Recommended” list in Learn a Song mode – I’d been going through the songs there in a relatively superficial fashion, going quickly from one to the next. Which is fine to spend some of my time doing, but that’s what the game’s “Nonstop Mode” is for: a good way to spend 20–30 minutes, but not the best way to spend the majority of my practice time.

So now, when I’m going through the recommended songs, I dig into individual songs more. (At least most of the time.) Instead of playing through a song once, now my most typical experience is to play a song twice, dropping into Riff Repeater mode in some sections the second time, maybe spending 15 minutes on the song? And I’m liking that a lot more: it’s transformed the experience from “play a song badly and feel dissatisfied” to one where I feel like I’m getting better in some small way on each song I try.

I’m also doing one exercise that Joan suggested, though it’s too early to see results for that. And I’m not doing Session Mode as much, which is fine; I’ll come back to that later, but it’s okay for me to take a break now. I’m also not currently focusing too much on my favorite songs, but I imagine I’ll come back to that at some point as well, too.

Comments Off

Older »