Wednesday, 12 November 2014

More from Minecraft Week with Minecraft: The Official Redstone Handbook by Nick Farwell, James Burlinson and Theo Cordner (Egmont Books)

Minecraft: The Official Redstone Handbook

Written by Nick Farwell
Contributions by James Burlinson and Theo Cordner

Published by Egmont Books

We're continuing our week-long delve into the mysteries of Minecraft with a closer look at one of the most magical parts of the game. Redstone. What on earth is it? What does it do? Why is it so exciting?

The deeper you delve into Minecraft (literally) the more likely you are to discover Redstone. Leafing through the menus and ingredients lists for weird and wonderful things we'd never actually encountered in the game, Charlotte and I didn't discover Redstone for ages but after a particularly perilous episode while playing, we discovered strange rocks embedded with the magical stuff deep down in the darkness.

In "Minecraft: The Official Redstone Handbook" from Egmont, you'll get to try out some intriguing Redstone recipes ranging from the very simplest ways of controlling lights and doors, to some of the most complex Minecraft creations that Minecraft engineers have come up with. For instance, you can construct a fully working elevator system for a high-rise towerblock. You can even create a working stopwatch!

(Be warned though, it could take you a considerable amount of time, some Minecraft creations can literally take years!)

Redstone allows you to create circuitry and logic, and it's the magical stuff that can power your railways saving you all the legwork of pushing carts around yourself. It may be tricky to find but once you start creating your own Redstone goodies, you'll be hooked!

A Redstone Engine made with Redstone powder and a lever! Funky!

Charlotte's Redstone Story

I built a minecart railway around my new house which Daddy helped me make into a loop. I used Redstone Rails to power the cart so it would work on its own. While I was looking for other things in another part of the map I could see the train whizzing around on its own and couldn't understand why. When I got closer I saw that a sheep had got into the cart and was whizzing endlessly around my house in a dizzying loop! Eventually the poor thing disappeared in a puff of magic!

Daddy's Redstone Story
I grew up making circuits and logic stuff back when you had to make circuits out of copper-backed plastic and an etching pen. Redstone works in a very similar way, you lay out paths of redstone powder to make your circuits and then you can put all sorts of things into the circuit to get it to do interesting things (like lights, or Redstone repeaters to speed up or delay certain interactions). It's also very handy for keeping monsters at bay, because a redstone-powered dispenser packed with arrows can be a lethal autogun, keeping the zombies away from your door!

Charlotte's best bit: Finding out how to make redstone-powered piston creations

Daddy's Favourite bit: Seeing some of the really complicated Redstone creations people have made. Loved the fruit machine!

(Kindly sent to us for review by Egmont Books)