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

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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

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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

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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

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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.

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VGHVI Minecraft: April 24, 2014

May 03 2014

Pictures from the April VGHVI Minecraft session:

I returned to the tunnel that I’d dug last month:

Returning to the tunnel

Returning to the tunnel

Lava in a mine

Lava in a mine

The previous end of the tunnel (I think)

The previous end of the tunnel (I think)

And then I kept on going; after not too long, I hit some water:

Water floods the corridor

Water floods the corridor

Getting a good look at the underground river

Getting a good look at the underground river

Building a glass passage under the river

Building a glass passage under the river

I built a glass passage under that river and kept going. Eventually, I decided to dig up to see where I was; and again I hit water, this time flooding down from the surface. I didn’t take many pictures in the thick of things, unfortunately, but eventually I managed to block that off, I went sideways a bit and then dug up:

Digging up to the surface

Digging up to the surface

My original chimney went into a lake, as it turned out, but fortunately I got lucky and my second one didn’t hit water. With a bit of work, I managed to build a glass enclosure around where my original chimney hit the lake bottom, so then both chimneys worked:

A chimney in the middle of the water

A chimney in the middle of the water

Looking around

Looking around

After that, I went back to the city. We had a new participant, Tom; he was building a colored tower, so I took some pictures of that:

Tom's colored tower

Tom’s colored tower

Working on the tower

Working on the tower

Looking down into the center of the tower

Looking down into the center of the tower

And Miranda was continuing to improve the village that we’d discovered maybe half a year ago:

Returning to the village

Returning to the village

Inside the library, with one of the villagers keeping track of me

Inside the library, with one of the villagers keeping track of me

Out on the dock

Out on the dock

A villager is stuck

A villager is stuck

The building on the other side of the dock

The building on the other side of the dock

A view from the roof

A view from the roof

Starting to extend one of the buildings

Starting to extend one of the buildings

Then I traveled back to the city (encountering one interesting glitch along the way), and took pictures of the tower that Pat had finished:

A cube of lava and tunnels in the water

A cube of lava and tunnels in the water

Pat's finished tower

Pat’s finished tower

The top of the tower

The top of the tower

A view from higher up

A view from higher up

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Guitar Status: April 20, 2014

Apr 20 2014

Not a lot to say here; I’ve been practicing regularly, no huge insights or anything. Though I’ve been feeling a little less energetic than I had been in the past, both about learning guitar and learning Japanese; and playing into that is the fact that I’ve been really enjoying a programming project I’ve been working on at home for the last couple of weeks. I think I still want to keep on playing guitar regularly, but I might shift into more of a maintenance mode – put in three or four hours each weekend, but not focusing particularly on actively improving in any particular way? We’ll see.

One response so far

VGHVI Minecraft: March 27, 2014

Apr 12 2014

There wasn’t a lot to take pictures of in the March Minecraft session: Miranda couldn’t be there, so she wasn’t building, Dan was still traveling in a straight line, and we mostly talked.

While talking, I decided to follow Dan’s lead and also travel in a straight line; I just did it underground, coming out of the very first tunnels we dug back in 2010:

The start of my tunnel

The start of my tunnel

I hit a cave fairly early on:

Breaking into a cave

Breaking into a cave

The bottom of the cave

The bottom of the cave

Except that it wasn’t a cave, as I discovered when I went inside:

Looking up

Looking up

I think that’s something that Jonathan blew up years ago; as you can see above, it’s a huge pit under one corner of our big train track loop.

Continuing on, I ran into another cave, this one a real cave and a fairly interesting one:

Water and lava

Water and lava

An underground river

An underground river

One end of the river

One end of the river

A lava pool at the end

A lava pool at the end

A mine shaft above

A mine shaft above

I took more pictures of the mineshaft, but honestly: those all look kind of the same. And I ran into two or three more caves; pleasant enough, but nothing super distinctive, here are the best of the pictures.

Lava, redstone, and diamond

Lava, redstone, and diamond

A zombie

A zombie

My passage above another cave

My passage above another cave

An interesting experiment, but I kind of think I won’t continue it this month?

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VGHVI Minecraft: February 27, 2014

Mar 09 2014

Pictures from the February Minecraft session:

At first, I wandered around.

Somebody built a tall pole next to my swamp house

Somebody built a tall pole next to my swamp house

Oh, so that's where that tower is

Oh, so that’s where that tower is

But then Dan asked us if any of us had seen a procedurally-generated temple before, so I teleported to him:

New to me, too!

New to me, too!

Entering the temple

Entering the temple

Alcoves on the side

Alcoves on the side

Another door on the outside

Another door on the outside

And then, when I looked up, there was a path overhead; it turns out that he’d been building that for a few month. So I decided to follow it back.

A path in the sky

A path in the sky

Ocean and sand

Ocean and sand

Ocean peaks

Ocean peaks

Horses

Horses

An island at dusk

An island at dusk

Lava at night

Lava at night

A village in the distance

A village in the distance

Passing over another village

Passing over another village

Cutting through a mountain

Cutting through a mountain

I have more pictures; it was a long trip back! Eventually, I reached the end of the path; it was somewhere familiar, though I don’t think I could get there from the main city without guidance. So I wandered back from there.

The end of the road

The end of the road

A river canyon

A river canyon

An arch over water

An arch over water

While I was doing this, Miranda was continuing her renovation of a village we’d discovered several months back. I only took a few pictures near the end, but I think she was working on houses on the dock:

A house on the dock

A house next to water

The other side of the dock

The other side of the dock

And eventually I made it home:

Back at last

Back at last

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