Tuesday, 25 March 2014


At the very far extremes of Minecraft are the Edge Far Lands and the Corner Far Lands where the maths behaves very strangely. 

'The distance from the centre of the Minecraft map to the beginning of the Far Lands, is 12,550,820 metres (about a third of the circumference of the Earth at its equator).' 

'Much of the open space in both areas is shrouded in darkness and thus hostile mobs run rampant, making the Far Lands as a whole incredibly dangerous. This is especially problematic in the Corner Far Lands due to its layered structure. The flooded zones are filled with squid.'

'Minecraft’s universe is procedurally generated, meaning that an algorithm places each asset—every hill, mountain, cave, river, sheep, and so on—in a unique arrangement every time a new game is loaded, so that no two players’ worlds are exactly alike. Markus Persson, the game’s creator, planned for these worlds to be infinitely large: if a player kept walking in a single direction, the game would create more of the world in front of him, like an engineer forever laying track for an advancing train.
But, at extreme distances from a player’s starting point, a glitch in the underlying mathematics causes the landscape to fracture into illogical shapes and patterns. “Pretty early on, when implementing the ‘infinite’ worlds, I knew the game would start to bug out at long distances,” Persson told me. “But I did the math on how likely it was people would ever reach it, and I decided it was far away enough that the bugs didn’t matter.”'
'First of all, let me clarify some things about the “infinite” maps: They’re not infinite, but there’s no hard limit either. It’ll just get buggier and buggier the further out you are. Terrain is generated, saved and loaded, and (kind of) rendered in chunks of 16*16*128 blocks. These chunks have an offset value that is a 32 bit integer roughly in the range negative two billion to positive two billion. If you go outside that range (about 25% of the distance from where you are now to the sun), loading and saving chunks will start overwriting old chunks. At a 16/th of that distance, things that use integers for block positions, such as using items and pathfinding, will start overflowing and acting weird.'

youtube of the Far Lands gets very strange at about 3:30

courtesy of Kate Davies