Every couple of years I get pulled back into Minecraft. This time, I was bitten by the core gameplay loop of early Atlas, an early-access “survival” pirate game that’s more of a mess than it lets on. It’s still fun, but you will spend dozens of hours flailing (and dying) hopelessly before you get much more than a raft under your command.
Meanwhile, you’ll be doing a lot of resource gathering. Well, if I’m going to be doing that, I might as well go back to the source and play Minecraft!
Minecraft, by itself, is alright. Modded Minecraft, though, now there’s a thing. These hacky, weirdly complicated mods add years of depth to a game that is already deeper than most. Airships, magic, alternate dimensions, computer programming, automation; the list of systems mods add are infinite and ridiculous.
Even more ridiculous are the “modpacks” that are out there, publishing whole gobs of existing mods together into a whole; the current leader of these types of setups is Feed the Beast, named for… something, I’m sure. Documentation on modded Minecraft is pretty sparse. I’m sure a defunct blogspot website somewhere has the information.
Anyways, FTB has about a dozen or so actively maintained Modpacks, each catering to various playstyles. A lot of the current and former ones focus on “expert” play, where it tortures the core of Minecraft to the point of nihilism and turns it into more of a puzzle game for masochists.
I don’t have time for that.
What I do have time for, however, is a huge sandbox where I can waste time on enormous flights of fancy. FTB has a Modpack called FTB: Revelation, a very dramatic name for a Modpack that’s basically “everything but the kitchen sink”. Magic systems, beekeeping, about a dozen power generation systems (including nuclear reactor design), gardening, cooking, alternate dimensions, machine design and automation…. it’s a big list of 190-some mods, big and small, somehow shoehorned into a single, mildly complicated installation.
I was originally going to spend a few days learning the ins and outs of AWS to set one of these puppies up, but it turns out tutorials for doing this are poorly written and/or incomplete and/or ancient, and even if I were to go through the many steps to provision resources for the server, it’s still going to cost as much as it would be if I just went with a company that specializes in Minecraft servers.
So, last night, I bought one. To justify that purchase, I’d like other people to join in on it too. Unfortunately, it’s not as easy as just running Minecraft and connecting to a server.
So here are the steps to connect and have fun.
- Minimum Requirements: You’re gonna need a minimum of 6gb of RAM to give to Minecraft to run. You’re gonna need the 64-bit edition of Java 8 installed and ideally all other versions of Java uninstalled. You’re gonna need a copy of Minecraft: Java Edition installed (with a valid Minecraft account) and ran at least once. And you’re gonna need the Twitch.tv desktop app. With a valid Twitch.tv account. Yes, I know, it’s a lot.
- Assuming all of the above is installed and set up, go ahead and open the Twitch desktop app.
- Click the Mods tab.
- Click Minecraft to load up the Minecraft mods page.
- Click “Browse FTB Modpacks” and wait about 10 seconds for the mods to load.
- Click the search bar inside the page (not the one on the top of the app!) and type “Revelation”. Click on the result. You are taken to the FTB Revelation page.
- Click the purple Install button on the upper left of the screen.
- Once it’s done, click the Mods button again at the top of the Twitch app.
- Click Minecraft again.
- Click the new Revelation icon.
- In the upper right hand corner of the Revelation profile page, click the purple “…” button.
- Select Profile Options.
- Under Memory Settings, drag the slider to a bare minimum of 4096 MB. More is better. Way more is way better.
- Click the purple Okay button.
- Click Play. Wait a sec.
- The Minecraft Launcher window will appear. Click the green arrow to the right of the big green “PLAY” button. Select “FTB Revelation”.
- Click the “PLAY” button this time.
- Go get a coffee or smoke a cigarette or something. Unfortunately because this modpack is a behemoth, it takes several minutes to load.
- Once it loads up, click Multiplayer.
- Click “Add Server”
- Name it whatever you want, and in the server address put “eikenberry.serverminer.com” without quotes in the box.
- Click Done. You’ll be taken back to the Server browser, and the server should appear with the FTB logo and “eik’s minecraft server” listed. Double click on it.
- And that’s it! You’re in.
See? Only…. 2 dozen steps. Easy. Fortunately most of this stuff you don’t have to touch again, and can just launch Minecraft from the app.
Let’s have fun!