Minecraft: Pools of Lava

Feb 14 2011

When we last left our intrepid ravine explorer, he’d discovered a waterfall with lava visible way down at the bottom. So I gingerly picked my way around the waterfall and started building stairs down to the lower level.

Going around the back of the waterfall

Partway down - there's lava on both sides!

And the bottom was even more exciting than I’d hoped. There was a decent sized rock area for me to land in, but the waterfall had lava on not just one but two sides.

Lava on one side of the waterfall

Lava on the other side of the waterfall

Even more exciting than that, though, was my first diamond!

My first diamond!

And in the fourth direction from the waterfall, the cave went further back, leading to (surprise surprise) more lava.

Lava at end of cavern

Not just lava there, too: there’s redstone, iron, and coal.

Redstone, iron, and coal

In fact, when I got closer to the lava, I saw redstone in lots of places: here’s another example, and an example of gold for good measure.

Closer to the lava, with more redstone

There's gold here, too

I wanted to explore more, but how? I ended up with a scheme that I’m quite happy about: I dug a passage in the walls one block away from the lava, and also removed the block at chest height right next to the lava so I could see what I was doing. I did this initially for pragmatic reasons, so I could make sure I was staying near the lava without putting myself at risk of falling in (and, as a bonus, it meant that I didn’t need torches), but I ended up really liking it for aesthetic reasons: it created a quite nice viewing gallery all around the lava.

Here are a few examples, which also show more of the redstone that was waiting to be found. In one of them, you’ll also see a chest: Miranda had recently had a bad experience with lava in her game, so she convinced me that I should build a chest to store the goodies that I’d been collecting.

Digging a gallery around the lava

At the end of one branch of the lava

Gallery on the far side of the lava

On the far side of the lava from where I started, there was another cave; I explored it, finding more lava, more redstone, and more gold. It wasn’t too big, though.

Another cave, with more gold

More lava, redstone, and coal

With that, I was finally done exploring the ravine: I’d expected it to be large, but not that large! Great to have so much redstone, too: in fact, right now what I really want is more iron ore, because I’m thinking that at some point I’m going to want to go on a minecart track building frenzy. (One of the ideas I’m toying with for the rest of my home mountain is hollowing out most of it to build a huge train station.)

I’m not entirely sure what my next project will be: if I do do the train station, it will be a while before it comes to fruition. I’ll definitely do some exploring above the surface, maybe that will inspire me further? (A pity that there’s no way to skip the night part – any way to get the game to keep going when I’m using another program?) Maybe I’ll spend time just grinding for iron ore, too.


5 responses so far

  1. If you don’t want to play during nightfall open your inventory and leave the game running while you check Twitter or something. That’s what I do when I want to avoid those lovely Creeper folk.

    Also apparently if I waited just a little bit longer with my previous comment I would have known you made your way down to the bottom after all. Oh well. Your ravine reminds me of my labyrinth I found below my home island — it took like a week to fully explore it and, as far as mining its resources is concerned, I’m still not finished with it. Since I have a branch mine not too far away from it, I’ve ignored the labyrinth for now. One day, then.

  2. Nice finds! I’ve been running a server for a little while now. We’ve got some crazy building and mining going on, complete with transcontinental mine cart tracks and under water zombiequariums. Let me know if you want to come and explore, I’ll shoot you the IP.

    Looking forward to seeing you again at GDC!


  3. Ugh, I can’t believe I just *signed* that comment. I’m like my mother, allofasudden.

  4. @Steven: Oh, thanks for the suggestion of leaving the inventory open, that will work great! And thanks for the encouraging comments on the previous post: I’d totally love it if you did something similar, I’m certainly enjoying your Living the Life series, so more narrative from you would be great.

    @Rob: Thanks, and wow, transcontinental mine cart tracks? I’m pretty curious, could you send me the IP address? (I’m carlton@bactrian.org.) And see you in a couple of weeks!

    @both of you (and any other readers): You’re more than welcome to join in one of the VGHVI Minecraft nights. We do them once every month or month and a half; the next one will be Thursday in just over a week. (I guess that would be Friday for Steven.) More info at http://vghvi.org/ (though the post announcing that one won’t go up until Sunday some time).

  5. Out of all the VGHVI gaming nights you do, Minecraft and Burnout Paradise are the ones I regret missing the most, but unfortunately the time differences just get in the way of my ability to participate. Once I get my own PC I might be able to (and that’s certainly closer than it seems — I have the money, just need someone to help me build it now) but in the meantime I just have to continue playing by myself; that’s why I asked if there was a permanent server up and running because obviously time differences wouldn’t be an issue for one of those. Thanks for the offer though, I’ll be there in spirit or something!