VGHVI Minecraft, January 31, 2019

Feb 09 2019 Published by under Uncategorized

Pictures from the first Minecraft session of the new year. First, the inevitable wandering around:

I’m sure I’ve taken very similar pictures to this before.

Those stairs affect my mountain more than I expected.

Another view of how the stairs look in context.

The area to the right of the windows looks promising.

My initial reaction was that those stairs that Dan built are a little overwhelming. He wasn’t there this month, unfortunately, but maybe next month I’ll ask him if he would mind if I made them significantly narrower?


I’d been thinking of building more around the shop area, maybe extending it to the path through the base of the mountain, but when I was flying around, there’s this area that sticks out a bit to the right of the windows, and I was thinking maybe I could turn that into a sort of corner tower. So I decided to add another set of rooms there.

Digging my way into the corner.

Here’s the first stab of the shape of the room, without regularizing the wall blocks at all.

The outside view, with some of the blocks replaced / smoothed out.

Now we’ve got some windows, lights, and a fence.

It’s a little cramped on the inside now, though.

Also, this side looks a little blank.

A few more touches, now I like it better.

Here’s what it looks like now on the inside, with the side expanded and a second window added.

Going up a level.

The inside view of the second floor.

Here’s what it looks like from the side: the second floor is currently set back a block, and also has a shorter balcony.

The side window on the second floor.

Not up for decorating the inside yet, but let’s at least put in a splash of color.

Purple carpet on the second floor.

A daytime view of the front.


Dan couldn’t make it, and neither could Miranda, but Pat was there; in addition, his wife (I’m blanking on her name, maybe Emily?) also showed up. Here’s the building he was building; and she added some finishing touches to the roof of one of the existing ones.

The inside of Pat’s latest building.

Another angle on the inside.

Here’s the outside view of the front door.

And here’s the back view from the outside.

A slightly wider view; on the right, you can see the roof being worked on.

Finishing off the roof.

Looking across the roof to more of the city.

The finished roof, and the back garden.

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VGHVI Minecraft, November 29, 2018

Dec 09 2018 Published by under Uncategorized

Pictures from the November VGHVI Minecraft session:

First, the usual wandering around deciding what I want to do next.

Looking at my mountain and Dan’s castle.

Dan is building some stairs down to the ground.

I think I’ll do something inside the mountain next.

Here’s the other side of the pool.

And a view of the waterfall and stairs, just for context.


I’d initially been thinking that I’d put some shops in this area, and I still might do that for part of the area, but for the next bit I decided to be inspired by the water and dirt and make the area around the water feel a little bit like a beach.

Putting some sand near the water.

Sand next to the water on the other side, too; what do I want to do about the stone?

Let’s put in some dirt and tall grass. (Which can’t grow in sand, it turns out.)

Here’s a top down view of the whole pool area.

And here’s how the water, sand, and stairs fit together.


So that’s me. Meanwhile, Dan was building a wide set of stairs down to a plaza; I’ll have to talk to him next time about how he wants to integrate that with my mountain.

The stairs have landed!

The builder gazes up at his work.

Looking down the stairs.

How do we want to relate the platform at the base to the nearby construction?


Miranda was chipping away at her buried tomb:

A glowing box in the water.

Turtles and fish swim above the box.

One of the adjacent rooms is now white instead of gold.

A view of the white pedestal from above.


And, finally, I caught Pat when he had finished the shell of a building but was working on finishing it.

The outside of the building.

Nothing yet inside.

Adding some lights certainly helps.

Adding some grass to the back balcony.

Grass and sunset.

Furnishing the interior.

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VGHVI Minecraft, October 25, 2018

Nov 24 2018 Published by under Uncategorized

Pictures from the October Minecraft session:

First, the stuff that I did. The idea is to extend the shopping area from the train station to the entrance into the middle of the mountain.

I’m going to continue along that wall, going around the corner towards the dark area.

Looking up to a nearby mountain, where Dan is building. (We’ll get to him later!)

Looking down from the top of the mountain.

There’s some nice water on the right, I should think about that.

Let’s put in some tables and chairs.

In the back corner you can see the stairs that lead into the mountain.

Putting a picture on the wall.

A view from the corner.

Let’s replace the chest with stoves, maybe this can be a cafe.

It turns out that item floods the area when placed…

The flood spreads.

Now it’s dry again, and there’s a bit more decoration.

That’s what I did; Dan next.

Flying over to visit my neighbor.

Torches and stairs inside the castle.

Some water behind the glass.

A field of sunflowers out back.

The sunflowers are completely green from the back.

There’s a moat that extends around the side.

A closeup of some underwater plants.

Building a path with red flowers on the other side.

An exciting action shot of the flower planting.

Now there are flowers on both sides of the path.

Miranda was working on her underground tomb:

She’s added a watery pit.

Sea creatures in the water.

The surrounding room.

Pretty sure I’ve seen this gold room before.

The ground above the tomb.

And, finally, Pat’s latest buildings. (I don’t think I’ve taken pictures of the second of these before, but maybe I have?)

Inside his latest house.

There are books under the stairs.

A closeup on the chest nook in the books.

Looking out the window at the start of his next project.

The second floor continues the book theme.

The view from the second floor balcony.

Something in the early stages of construction.

Another house nearby that didn’t look familiar.

In this one, there are stairs under the stairs.

A light shining up from below.

There’s a bathtub in the basement!

Up on the second floor attic.

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VGHVI Minecraft, August 30, 2018

Sep 22 2018 Published by under Uncategorized

In the August Minecraft session, I wanted to connect the train station to the main entrance through the mountain. I decided that it would make sense to have a row of shops there, so I scoped out the area with that in mind.

Scoping out the next place I want to build.

Getting rid of mushrooms, starting to regularize the grass.

Making the wall a little deeper (and only stone, no dirt), and starting to put the floor in place.

Do I want a wall in front of the store, like a regular building?

No, a more open layout is better, with counters serving as the boundary.

Here’s the view from the front of the store.

Let’s add in some decoration.

That worked pretty well, let’s repeat the process a little bit further down along the wall.

I’m eventually going to want to connect up to where the light is on the back wall.

Next, I decided to check in on other people. Miranda was working a bit more on the inside of her pyramid (or whatever this crypt thing is); Patrick was wandering around looking at rendering changes in the latest version.

Looking at what Miranda is doing.

A doorway surrounded by darkness.

A forest next to water, with a lava crevasse.

Looking more closely at the crevasse.

A really weird two-level forest: there’s this one-dirt-brick high land with trees on it above a cave.

Some pretty blue flowers.

There’s something vertical underwater.

They’re kelp forests.

A little floating island above some mountains.

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VGHVI Minecraft: July 26, 2018

Aug 11 2018 Published by under Uncategorized

For the July Minecraft session, I was continuing from the room with the balcony that I’d built in June. First, I needed to clean up that room:

A bit of rendering weirdness on a nearby mountain.

The room is unfortunately asymmetric.

Digging out the inside to make it symmetric.

Let’s make the ceiling a little higher.

Now let’s build some steps up through the ceiling.

Stairs seem nicer than blocks.


Once that was cleaned up a bit, I looked around outside; after wandering around a bit, I decided to build a path from the stairs above this room to the castle at the top of the mountain.

The main stairs up.

The view from the top of a second set of stairs.

The top part of the path, looking out from the flat area near the castle.

Let’s add a bit of color to mark the horizontal part of the path.

The path was a bit narrow, let’s widen it.

Here’s a view of the whole thing.

I think the next thing I’ll do is to fill this bit in with a building of some sort.


Now onto other people’s work. First, Miranda:

When I teleported to her, she was working on a pool.

Light at the bottom of a pool.

The pool is at the bottom of a shaft.

Here’s the room at the top of the shaft.


Next, Pat:

An attic room with a rough wood wall / ceiling.

Adding a bed next to one of the walls.

There’s a balcony off of one end of the room.

The stairs down from the attic.

The first-floor room.

A view of the (setting? rising? probably setting) sun through the window.

The view from the street.

One last look at the swimming pool.

A top view of the finished swimming pool.


And it turned out that Dan had started building on a mountain next to the one I’ve been working on.

Dan’s building a plateau.

Howdy, neighbor!

A bit of space beneath the plateau.

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VGHVI Minecraft: June 28, 2018

Jul 08 2018 Published by under Uncategorized

In the June Minecraft session, I wanted to continue building floors up above the train station, continuing the work from May.

A light in the forest that I saw when traveling back.

A side exit from the third floor.

Looking out the third floor window.

Where exactly do I want the next floors to be?

Looking around the top of the mountain.

Before, I’d built a second floor (basically looking out through the top of the train station) and a third floor (the window visible in the fourth picture above). The third floor has a side exit which, unfortunately, doesn’t seem to connect anywhere particularly productive: there’s really not a way to make a path going up the mountain from it, and there’s what looks like it could be a mountain entrance behind it, but it ends almost immediately.

Going up the mountain is more promising, though: near the top, there’s an existing opening into the mountain. So I should try to add more floors going up such that one of them naturally comes out into that area; and also maybe I can make a path from there to the building that’s already on the top of the mountain?


So I decided to start by building a fourth floor that’s the same height up from the third as the third is from the second, and see where that leaves me.

Digging out the fourth floor.

Fourth floor window from the outside.

Putting some glass in place.

Looking at the outside view, it starts to become clearer. There’s a lump of mountain blocks on the right side (looking from the outside) that make a bit of a mess, so I’ll want to clean that out to have an even wall. And the fourth floor is a little uncomfortably far from the hole at the top, so I need to figure out what to do about that.


I decided to embrace the extra space between the fourth floor and the hole at the top: that hole actually sticks out a bit, so I can think of it as a balcony, and so having a couple of blocks of floor sticking out beneath it makes sense, which will take up some of the space. But even so the amount of space is a little large, and actually there’s a little more space between the third and fourth floors than I’d like: so I think a three-high window would provide more balance than the two-high windows I’d been using.

Here’s the view with the front leveled out and with a three-high third-floor window, that does look better.

What the three-high window looks like from the inside. (I think this is the fourth floor?)

Outside view with the third and fourth floor windows and surroundings in a good state.

A strange strip of light at the top of the train station; apparently light can shine through half-height blocks?

After that, the spacing looked good: two spaces above the fourth floor and then two spaces of balcony floor left a good balance.


Digging out the fifth floor, reaching the balcony.

Making the balcony width match the other floors.

The balcony sides are asymmetric, I’ll need to clean that up.

Cutting back the right side and adding in a railing.

Let’s use stone brick for the floor here instead of wood.

So now I’m almost done with the area above the train station. I’ll need to clean up the balcony level a little more, probably; I’ll probably want to provide access from it somehow to the building at the top; I might want to something out of that little green exterior area on the third floor; and I might add some interior furnishings. But basically that phase of the construction is done, I’ll want to figure out which part of the mountain to build out next.


No pictures this time of other people’s work: there wasn’t as much other building going on as normal. (Pat in particular couldn’t be there.)

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VGHVI Minecraft: May 31, 2018

Jun 24 2018 Published by under Uncategorized

For the May Minecraft session, I continued the work of vertically extending the train station that I’d started in April.

Looking up in the middle of the train station; the wood is the side where I’ve built a second floor.

The second floor now has a window into the body of the station.

Looking up and back into the second floor.

Looking across the second floor; I’m really not sure what to do with the dirt area on the end.

Digging up so I can put in a third floor.


Once the second floor was done, I needed to figure out the third floor (and potentially higher floors) – how high up can I go, anything I need to worry about on the sides, anything I can actively connect with on the sides?

I’ve cleaned off the front, so I can potentially go up for a while.

There’s this blobby shape on the right side, though; not sure if I want to put a room in there or just get rid of it…

Reminding myself how the stairs worked on the first floor.

The third floor, dark and empty right now.

Let’s get some light in here.

That’s a nice view.

Here’s what it looks like from the outside.

Filled in with glass. (And one stone block on the side.)

The view out the window at dusk.

Adding a side exit: on the side away from the weird blob, there’s a green bit of mountain that seems worth connecting to?

I guess the next questions (in no particular order) are:

  • What will come out of that connection to the outside in the last picture?
  • What about the blob on the other side?
  • How far up can I go, and what happens when I reach the top?


After that, I went to look at Pat’s swimming pool, it really looked quite stunning:

Pat’s swimming pool; I like how the green and the reddish-brown work together.

A view at a bit of an angle.

Looking down from the top of one of the light fixtures.

An outside view at night.

Here’s the floating town during the day.

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VGHVI Minecraft: April 26, 2018

May 19 2018 Published by under Uncategorized

I started off the April Minecraft session by working a bit on the station near the city.

A random jungle and water picture when traveling back to the city

Tracks over the water

The initial state of the station; it’s a bit of a mess

Now the body is cleaned out

The door is asymmetric

That’s better

Here’s a top view; how do I want this to fit into the surrounding areas?

Adding some stairs leading to the portal

Here’s the top part of that path

The view towards the water

Adding in a gap in the wall

I didn’t have any great ideas about what to do with the back, so I left that part alone

After that, I flew back towards the mountain to figure out what to do there.

The view from the beach

Looking down into the middle of the mountain

Some curiously triangular water

The front view of the mountain

An oblique view

Nearby lands

The wall above the station

After looking around, extending vertically from the back of the station seemed like the next step; there was already the beginnings of a space on the inside, and there’s a natural hollow if I head far enough.

Looking up from the back of the inside of the station

Cleaning up the back a bit

Looking down from where a second floor might be

Starting to put a floor in place

The view from the second floor

Maybe the floor should be one block lower?

Another view of the lower version

The lower version, from upstairs

Putting in some stairs on the back wall

At this point, I ran out of time, so I went to take pictures of Dan’s latest building.

A tower with lava floors

The tower with two of its neighbors

The view towards the city

There’s a black box on top

Closeup of the bottom layer

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VGHVI Minecraft: March 29, 2018

Apr 21 2018 Published by under Uncategorized

For the March Minecraft session, my main goal was to finish the train tracks that I’d begun in February. I’d made it to where I started to hit water, so I needed to go from there to close to the city.

My first tracks across water

What comes next

Looking slightly further ahead

Building the next set of tracks

Some land to make my way across

A surprising location for a cow

Tracks snaking through the snow

After that, I’d reached the edge of the large body of water that the city borders on. I had to figure out how much I wanted to cross: did I want to just go straight across (to the left of a tower in the water), or cross less water (to the right of that tower)?

The watery side of the tower

The less watery side of the tower

This looks like a good place for the tracks to land

Maybe put the station in the area on the right side of this picture?

A moonlit window in the ground

Looking towards the city from the portal

I think that door leads to the first place we ever built in this world?

A closeup of the strange half door glitch

After looking around, the shore wasn’t super conducive to train tracks, so I decided to cut across the water on the wider side instead of going on the narrow side and trying to snake across the shore. And, looking for a location for the station, I decided not to go all the way to the city; there was an area not too far away from the portal a little way away from the shore that was already dug out in an appropriately rectangular shape. So I decided not to go along the shore at all: instead, just dig a trench straight in once I hit land.

The tracks have crossed the water

Starting to cut through the hillside

Looking back towards the water

And, with that done, it was time to go back and add power, and then take it for a spin. (Fortunately I didn’t run into any animals when riding it.)

Powering the rails

Everything’s all set now

The glow of powered rails at night

More of the nighttime tracks

With that finished, I decided to wander back to the city and then towards Dan’s most recent tower.

Some pink and teal buildings in the city

Cats live inside the pink building, it turns out

There’s one in the teal building, too

Dan’s tower is nicely lit up

He built a flower field next to the tower

A closeup on the flower field

There’s a space underneath the field

A slightly different angle on that space

Another view of the field and the tower

Next, I visited Pat’s latest addition to his floating city, a swimming pool. When I got there, he was leveling out the water by covering it with ice and then melting the ice.

Working on a swimming pool

I’m actually not sure what building this is – based on a later picture, I don’t think it’s the swimming pool? I could be wrong, though…

Maybe this is the view of the street when you exit the swimming pool?

A top-down view of the pool

Icing over all of the pool

Laying down a heat source to melt the pool

More glowstone

The ice is melting

Pat had to leave before the ice finished melting, unfortunately. And, finally, Miranda finished off the floating glass building from last time:

A bottom view of the floating building

And a top view, with the forest beneath

A nice space inside

And a view of the forest below

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VGHVI Minecraft: February 22, 2018

Mar 18 2018 Published by under Uncategorized

For the February Minecraft session I decided to build the train tracks from the station I’d completed in January. There were actually three tracks coming out of the station, which raised the possibility of having multiple tracks going from the station to the city, but I decided to just build one. Which sounds simple enough, I just had to figure out the exact path.

A random pretty picture I took while flying back to the station.

A nighttime view of the back entrance to the guardhouse on top of the mountain.

Where exactly should the track go here?

That last picture raised the first real question about the track. The desert isn’t very high quality terrain, so I’d been thinking I’d run the track through that. But the track would naturally enter on the bottom right, and there’s water there with a tree nearby, making a rather nice oasis. So, after thinking about it more, I decided that I didn’t want to run it through the desert, and I also didn’t want to run it between the trees and the desert: I instead took inspiration from the terraces on the right and put the track on one of them.

The track winding around to the right of the desert.

A closer view of the terrace.

After that, I followed that level of the terrace for a while; not too long later, it opened up into a wider grass area, near Roger’s unfinished cathedral. And I decided to scout ahead a bit; after that grass area, there’s a water / shore section, with a big tower that Pat built as the major landmark.

Near the unfinished cathedral.

A view of the city across the water.

A closer view of the base of the tower.

I’d been thinking I’d run the tracks along the shore, but the woods there are really thick, I’d have to cut trees down. And, if you look at that first water picture, there’s a nice gap in the trees on the land between the two water sections; if I run the track through there, then I can skirt the water on the left shore in the first section, and cut across the ice to the left of the tower in the second section.

That seemed straightforward enough; back to track laying.

Some interesting caves I noticed when passing by them; I can imagine eventually building stuff around there…

The windy parts of the track, near the station.

It got a lot more boring once I moved away from the mountain.

Approaching the water.

My first track over water; turns out I can’t build track straight on ice, I have to replace the ice with something else.


That’s what I was working on; yes, I spent more than an hour mostly thinking about where to put a bit of rail, and didn’t even reach the city. Dan was the other person building stuff; he built a tower near the art installations he’d been working on earlier, nicely placed to link his recent buildings with buildings extending out from the city.

A glowing tower.

A view from farther back: you can see how it’s near one of Pat’s towers (not the same one earlier in the post!), and you can also see one of the existing train loops attached to the city (the one that goes through the underwater tunnel).

Just the tower and the rain.

Two towers and the city.

The view from the tower to the art gallery.

A view down from high up.

This tower is quite tall; and, in keeping with Dan’s recent aesthetic, there’s a deep hole at its base (though I don’t think he went down to bedrock this time).

Looking down the middle of the tower.

Where the tower enters the water.

The bottom of the pit.

Looking up from the bottom.

The view from the art gallery area.

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