Installing Minecraft Mods on Linux and MacOS

Java Minecraft is all about modding. The real trick to playing many modded versions of Minecraft Java Edition, is launching only the mod versions you want without doing a massive reconfig every time you switch the mods you’re using.

If you want to quickly install Minecraft mods on Linux or MacOS, try MultiMC. I’ve seen Twitch is very popular, but it doesn’t beat the ease of handling different mods that MultiMC gives you. Also, Twitch barely works on MacOS and Linux.

Minecraft Fishing Poles

I’ve been trying to beat Minecraft in an Ocean Buffet. This teaches you a few interesting things. Most recently, because of lack of cattle in the Minecraft Ocean Biome, I’ve taken to fishing to find leather to make books to make an enchanting table and the requisite library.

This brings us to leveling up Fishing poles. It appears (after many hours of fishing in Minecraft) that Luck of the Sea actually reduces your chance of getting leather, while increasing your chance of getting enchanted books.

As close as I can tell, when fishing, you have categories of items that you might get. Fish is the primary item, but their are other items like boots, string, and leather. When you have Luck of the Sea, it appears that catching an item in those categories results in a chance of an upgrade to a better item in that category. For string it might be more string, for boots it might be enchanted boots. And for leather, it is likely an enchanted book.

So the moral of the story is, if you need to fish for leather, don’t put Luck of the Sea on your fishing pole in Java Minecraft 1.13.2.

Minecraft 1.13.2 Seeds

Spawn in Ocean Biome
Seed: 1538636107446210403
World Type: Buffet (none selected)

Watch out for drowned with tridents. At least, you don’t run into creepers in this ocean buffet.

So I started a random buffet world that turned out to be an ocean biome. This is my first time spawning where there is no land. You get a whole host of challenges that you don’t normally see by spawning in the ocean. But we (me and my lan buddies) came up with solutions for most of them.

Ocean Challenge #1: No land!

This one is easy. Find a shallow part of the ocean and dig up dirt. Then build out a small land platform to rest on.

Ocean Challenge #2: No torches or trees!

At this point, you can’t put a roof over your head, because you’ll have monsters spawn in the dark! And remember three days of no sleep puts you at risk of phantoms, so you have a hard deadline for torches or a bed.

We solved the wood problem by swimming around and finding shipwrecks. Unfortunately, you can’t stay under water long enough to break wood. Start by raiding the loot chests and then from the surface mine the masts of the shipwreck.

We lucked out and found iron and coal in the loot chests. From that we could make torches and put a roof over our heads

Next, make a crafting bench and an axe, and go back for more wood.

Conserve ***ALL*** wood! It’s way too valuable to burn!

Ocean Challenge #3: No Fuel!

As I mentioned, you can’t burn your wood. It is wwwwwaaaayyyyy too valuable and hard to come by. Instead, burn kelp blocks. You can burn some wood stairs, fencing, or trap doors from a shipwreck to dry out nine kelp. Then go too town harvesting and drying kelp using a wall of furnaces. You usually can dry out 20 kelp using one dried kelp block. And the kelp blocks are great for smelting iron and cooking fish.

Ocean Challenge #4: No seeds!

This is where loot chests are your friend. Loot chests often have seeds. Mines, ocean monuments, and shipwrecks all have loot chests, and sometimes they have seeds. Once you have seeds, make a platform of dirt to grow them out on the ocean.

Ocean Challenge #5: No bed!

Those phantoms are pesky, and you won’t find any sheep in your ocean biome. The solution is to mine around until you find a mineshaft. Mineshafts have cave spiders, and even though those little monsters are nasty to fight, they live in webs. Chop the webs with a swords and you get more string than you know what to do with.

Make wool from the spiderwebs. Make beds from the wool. Then you can finally have a good night’s sleep.

Other Ocean Buffet Tips

Get a fishing pole and anvil as soon as possible. You can make some really nice armor and weapons from the stuff you fish.

Light up the ocean floor with jack o’lanterns. They glow in the dark and are waterproof.

Reuse torches when mining. Do this by mining side-tunnels with the torches, then reclaim the torches on your way out of the side-tunnel, and seal the entrance to the side-tunnels with cobblestone.

Minecraft Seeds (Java Minecraft 1.12.2 version)

I have to admit, there’s some pretty cool Minecraft seeds out there. Here’s the one I just ran into. I’ll post more information on it soon.

Village and Temple

Java Minecraft 1.12.2
Seed: 2773451647744737359
Java 8

Cliffside Village
Spawn point is by this wonderful cliffside village.

Dessert Temple
Spawn point is also by this dessert temple.

Caves and Creatures
Lot’s of creatures are available by the spawn point. There’s donkeys, sheep, cattle, and rabbits.

Lava Cave
Don’t fall in the lava cave by your spawn point.

Lotsa Caves
You can’t run in a straight line without finding a cave when you use this seed.



Floating Islands and Lavafalls

Java Minecraft 1.12.2
Seed: -5643160417678160709
Java 8

This see starts you on Wolf Island (my name for it). A short distance away by boat are plenty of sheep, llamas, mountains, and dark oak forests. My favorite part of the seed are the views of lavafalls and waterfalls. Also a few beautiful islands in sky.

Floating Island in the Sky
Nice minecraft seed for island spawn point.

Lavafalls and Waterfalls
Minecraft seed for lavafalls and waterfalls.

Arches and Lavafalls
Beautiful views in this seed.

Clojure Alpha-Beta Pruning

Any board game AI for two-player games of perfect information requires at least a simple Alpha-Beta Pruning implementation. Since, my next game is a bird chess (tori shogi) game, I’ve implemented Alpha-Beta Pruning in Clojure and ClojureScript. It was painful, but someone had to do it.

I like giving back to the community, so I’ve released the Clojure/ClojureScript code for Alpha-Beta Pruning as a generic library that anyone can use over on GitHub.

Making Online Games

I’m making completely HTML 5 based games for online play. Here’s my current list.


Ski, Penguin! Ski!

I was experimenting with Construct 3’s tile mapping for platformers, and ended up creating a skiing penguin. Go figure. I made this one compatible with mobile devices, phones, and old fashioned computers. I haven’t added any sound, but may revisit it later and add the “Penguin Death Squawk”.

Humpty Pong

Humpty Pong

I got bored this weekend so whipped up a simple game using Construct 3‘s free version. I called it Humpty Pong, because it has Humpty Dumpty and all the king’s horses and all the king’s men, and even features a wall. The graphics is from a massive web clipart collection I bought back in the 1990’s. Yeah, … old.

Use the arrow keys to move the men/horses back and forth. With each point added to your score, Humpty moves just a little faster. Humpty is also designed to change directions randomly, … sometimes without even hitting a wall. When the game ends, wait a few seconds and press any key to get a new game running.

System Requirements: Chrome 57 or equivalent.

Game Creation with Construct 3

Construct 3 is a game creation tool for making online games. Scirra has announced the Construct 3 beta will start in April 2017. This is exciting new for anyone that makes online games.

Construct 3 will depart from Construct 2 in that it will practice what it preaches when it comes to online games. Construct 3 will not only create online HTML5 style games, it will be an online HTML5 web application.

If it worries you that Construct 3 will not allow game development when you are offline or out-of-range of a network. Never fear, Construct 3 will take advantage of Chrome’s ability to allow you to use web apps even when you are not connected to the internet. So, you can keep your resources in the cloud, or keep them locally. You can also create your games while on the internet, or when you’re nowhere near an internet connection.

Construct 3 will import Construct 2 applications seamlessly. So, you don’t have to start over with new projects for games you are currently developing with Construct 2.

Construct 3 will have a free version and a subscription version. The subscription version will cost $99/year. That works out to just over $8 per month. Not a bad deal for professional game developers. Those creating games as a hobby instead of professionally may find this a bit of a sticker shock. Luckily for game-creation hobbyists, Construct 2 doesn’t have a scheduled end-of-life date, yet.

Continue reading “Game Creation with Construct 3”

Constructing Online Games

Creating games for the web has never been easier. There are countless options. You can make games in HTML5 using CSS, JavaScript and the ever-popular Canvas element. Or, you can use any number of game engines designed to create Internet-based games.

My current favorite tool for creation of online games is Construct 2. There are many game engines out there, but Construct 2 is my favorite because of the low cost, and the fact that Scirra (the maker of Construct 2) does not charge a royalty for games you sell or distribute using their engine. Many popular game engines want a chunk of your earnings if you create the next big internet gaming sensation. Scirra is happy to sell you a hobbyist or professional license. That is why you will see Construct 2 favored on this site.

Just because Construct 2 is favored, don’t expect TypeScript, JavaScript, Angular, and Node.js to be ignored. Making more advanced games, even with Construct 2, requires some basics knowledge of web programming. We’ll cover other types of web programming with an emphasis on game creation and tutorials that create simple games.

Now, let’s get your first game made with a brief Construct 2 game creation tutorial.

Continue reading “Constructing Online Games”