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Minetest Logo
The Minetest main menu with the Minetest Game mod selected
Original author(s)Perttu Ahola
Developer(s)Perttu Ahola, sfan5, ShadowNinja, Nathanaël Courant, Loic Blot, paramat, Auke Kok, rubenwardy, Krock/SmallJoker, Lars Hofhansl
Initial release0.0.1 / November 2, 2010; 9 years ago (2010-11-02)[1]
Stable release
5.1.0 / October 12, 2019; 2 months ago (2019-10-12)[2]
Preview release
5.2.0-dev / October 12, 2019; 2 months ago (2019-10-12)[3]
Written inC++
PlatformLinux, FreeBSD, Microsoft Windows, MacOS, Android
LicenseGNU Lesser General Public License v2.1[5]

Minetest is an open source sandbox game engine, originally developed by Perttu Ahola, and released in 2010.[1] Minetest includes an inbuilt example game "Minetest Game". This game is inspired by, and has a similar pixelated graphics style to, such games as Minecraft and Infiniminer. Minetest is available for Linux, FreeBSD, Microsoft Windows, MacOS, and Android. Minetest has been used in educational environments [6][7][8] to teach subjects such as mathematics,[9] programming,[10] and earth sciences.[11]

Software development model[edit | edit source]

The main development priority for the Minetest project is to enable a platform for modding.

Minetest developers maintain the engine, leaving the development of the mods to their individual maintainers.

Community development of Minetest is done mostly through Mods and "Games".

Mods[edit | edit source]

Mods are written in Lua and may add many different elements to the game, including (but not limited to) items, mobs, weather, HUDs, and textures (current available texture packs range from 4x4px to 512x512px[12]).[13][14][15]

Games[edit | edit source]

Games (originally called "subgames") are collections of mods, along with other files, that can be loaded together by Minetest. Examples of such games are the inbuilt "Minetest Game", which focuses on building, and "Minetest Saturn", which is a space simulation.

A mountain at morning in Minetest Game version 5.1.0
The Minetest Game crafting screen, showing the crafting pattern of a stone pickaxe
Minetest Game with its former name, Minetest-c55
A Minetest texture pack

Gameplay[edit | edit source]

Player damage can be enabled or disabled, examples being damage from monsters and dangerous materials, or falling from a height. Minetest also includes a "creative mode", which provides infinite resources for the player to create with. When this mode is disabled, all resources must be manually collected by the player.[16]

Minetest Game[edit | edit source]

The default game, "Minetest Game", behaves similarly to Minecraft. There are a variety of blocks to choose from, including natural resources and ores, and artificial materials such as wooden planks or sticks.[13] The game also has items such as swords, pickaxes, and other tools.

Networking[edit | edit source]

The Minetest engine allows for singleplayer and multiplayer modes.[17] For multiplayer mode, players can play online on existing servers, or host their own. Minetest allows the user to run a LAN multiplayer server by ticking a box and specifying the port. The default port is 30000, and the default IP is that of the host device. Allowing access from outside the local network requires port forwarding. If the server is global, the user can choose whether they want their server announced at a public listing, or to keep it private and require that players request the server IP and port from the user.[13]

Content Distribution[edit | edit source]

3rd-party Minetest content (mods, games, etc.) is hosted and distributed via Git hosts such as GitHub[3], the Minetest Forum Mod section, the Minetest Content Database, and other file hosting services.

Applications[edit | edit source]

Education[edit | edit source]

Minetest was used as a co-design tool for teaching children who can not attend in person sessions.[8] Minetest was also used for teaching logic, creating, and debugging to primary and secondary students.[18] In 2017 in France, Minetest was used to teach calculus and trigonometry.[9] At Federal University of Santa Catarina in Brazil, Minetest was used to teach programming in a variant called MineScratch.[10] In 2018, for Laboratory Education and Apprenticeships (EDA) at the Paris Descartes University, Minetest was used to teach life and earth sciences to year 6 students who could not observe some phenomena in person but could experience them in the Minetest virtual world.[11]

A fork of Minetest, Kidscode, is a subscription-based education tool where students can explore pre-built worlds or learn different subjects with each other in planned sessions.[19]

The European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN) uses Minetest as a software environment for a collaborative game called "Craft The Web" which allows the players to learn how the web was made and what principles govern it.[6]

A community member of IBM's Qiskit created a Minetest game to introduce and demonstrate quantum computing.[7]

Competition[edit | edit source]

2019 Google Capture the Flag used Minetest and the Mesecons mod to demonstrate hardware circuits.[20]

Reception[edit | edit source]

In 2013, freewaregenius.com gave a positive review of Minetest, stating that "it has had a lot of time to be finessed and perfected, and it shows."[21] In 2015, Opensource.com listed Minetest at #1 in its "Best open source games of 2015"[22] In 2016, inspiredtoeducate.net gave a positive review of Minetest, stating "I’m impressed with the current state of the project."[23] In 2017 Opensource.com again gave a favourable review of Minetest, stating that "Minetest is perhaps the most complete alternative to Minecraft", and noted its expansibility, stating that it "features a very user-friendly API for creating mods in Lua."[24] In 2017, MakeUseOf.com listed Minetest as one of the "20 Best Open Source Games".[25] In 2019, Linux Format wrote positively of Minetest Game, stating: "This the [sic] most outstanding and playable clone of Minecraft, fully open source and free"[26]

Since November 2013 Minetest has been downloaded over 1.3 million times from GitHub.[27] The Android version of Minetest has over 100 thousand downloads on the Google Play store.[28]

See also[edit | edit source]

Others articles of the Topics Free and open-source software AND Video games : Freedoom

Others articles of the Topic Free and open-source software : Bitcoin Private, Hypnos Music Player, Eclipse Theia, PulseEffects, Moleculer, Koseven (framework), herbstluftwm

Others articles of the Topic Video games : Hospital Manager Online, Tree of Life (video game), Top Secret (magazine), Wrecking Ball (Overwatch), Merlin Racing, AdvertCity, Open Space Program
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References[edit | edit source]

  1. 1.0 1.1 "My InfiniMiner/Minecraft inspired game project". November 2, 2010. Retrieved November 14, 2019.
  2. "Minetest". opensuse.org. October 12, 2019. Retrieved November 14, 2019.
  3. 3.0 3.1 "Continue with 5.2.0-dev". github.com. October 12, 2019. Retrieved October 13, 2019.
  4. "Minetest 0.4.11 Released As Open-Source Alternative To Minecraft". Phoronix. December 26, 2014. Retrieved October 11, 2019.
  5. "Games/Minetest - Debian Wiki". Retrieved October 12, 2019.
  6. 6.0 6.1 Craft The Web: learn how the web was made, European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN), February 6, 2019, retrieved November 14, 2019
  7. 7.0 7.1 "Qiskit Blocks". qiskit.org. Retrieved October 11, 2019.
  8. 8.0 8.1 Walsh, Greg; Donahue, Craig; Rhodes, Emily E. (2015). "KidCraft: Co-Designing within a Game Environment" (PDF). Retrieved October 12, 2019.
  9. 9.0 9.1 Boutet, Henri. (January 2017). "Mathématiques et "serious gaming": l'exemple de Minetest" [Mathematics and "serious gaming": the example of Minetest]. Mathématice. Num. 53 (in français). Retrieved October 12, 2019.
  10. 10.0 10.1 da, Rocha, Jhonata (2016-11-23). "MineScratch: integração minetest-scratch para apoiar o ensino de programação" [MineScratch: Minetest-Scratch Integration to Support Programming Teaching]. Repositório Institucional da UFSC (in português).
  11. 11.0 11.1 Pauty-Combemorel C. (February 7, 2018). "Utilisation d'un jeu vidéo dans le cadre de l'enseignement des SVT: le cas de Minetest. De 0 à 1 ou l'heure de l'informatique à l'école" [Using a video game as part of the teaching of Life and Earth Sciences: the case of Minetest. From 0 to 1 or computer time at school.] (in français).
  12. "Install and Play Minetest". system76.com. July 28, 2017. Retrieved November 14, 2019.
  13. 13.0 13.1 13.2 Bidwell, Johnny (January 20, 2017). "Minetest:Craft, play and mod". Linux Magazine: 62–65.
  14. "Tutorials - Minetest (Linux Magazine)". Retrieved October 11, 2019.
  15. "Minetest : comment rajouter des Mods et des textures ?" [MINETEST: HOW TO ADD MODS AND TEXTURES?]. Geek Junior (in français). February 1, 2018. Retrieved October 11, 2019.
  16. "Minetest, Free and Open Source Sandbox Game Inspired by Minecraft". Linux Game News. Retrieved October 11, 2019.
  17. Sanctis, Valerio De (October 12, 2016). ASP.NET Core and Angular 2. Packt Publishing Ltd. ISBN 9781786461339. Retrieved October 12, 2019.
  18. "Evaluation of existing resources (study/analysis)" (PDF). TACCLE 3 – Coding. October 24, 2016.
  19. "Kidscode | Learn the digital world for kids". Retrieved October 12, 2019.
  20. "Google CTF". withgoogle.com. Retrieved October 11, 2019.
  21. Kurdi, Samer (May 30, 2013). "Minetest is an EXCELLENT, totally free clone of Minecraft". freewaregenius.com. Retrieved October 12, 2019.
  22. Muilwijk, Robin (December 30, 2015). "Best open source games of 2015". Opensource.com. Retrieved February 16, 2019.
  23. Rosario, Michael (May 4, 2016). "Minetest: a free and open source alternative to #Minecraft". inspiredtoeducate.net. Retrieved October 12, 2019.
  24. Baker, Jason (October 12, 2017). "10 open source alternatives to Minecraft". Opensource.com. Retrieved October 12, 2019.
  25. Lee, Joel (August 14, 2017). "20 Best Open Source Video Games". Retrieved October 11, 2019.
  26. "Sandbox Survival: Minetest". Linux Magazine: 86. July 30, 2019.
  27. "Github Release Stats". somsubhra.com. Retrieved October 11, 2019.
  28. "Minetest is an extensive-world block sandbox game". appbrain.com. Retrieved November 14, 2019.

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