It's been over a month since Minecraft 1.3 Patch was released and at the time, some players weren't too impressed with the limited amount of added content. That patch added a new world loader and a much better in-game lighting system, but both of those were from the mod community. It added beds and some minor tweaks, but fans wanted more after waiting a month a half since the 1.2 update.
Enter the 1.4 update. Markus Persson (notch) updated his blog and Twitter on Monday, revealing that new Minecraft update would release this week.
The major changes/additions coming with the 1.4 update include the introduction of a Minecraft achievement system, a gaming feature Notch expressed his interest in last month, describing it as a form of "in-game questing," something that Minecraft could really benefit from.
On Twitter, Notch explains just how detailed the initial achievements may be:
"So far, Minecraft is tracking 662 statistics. The stats list page is annoying. I need a tree list feature!"
"Most of the stats are item usage and crafting info per item and block."
Achievements have proven a success across various platforms, including iOS titles and of course, the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 home consoles. The good news about the Minecraft achievements is that they won't be the boring and useless achievements as explained in a previous Notch blog update where he provides the example that they won't involve things like, "'cut down 10000 trees', but rather challenges like 'ride a pig off a cliff'."
As for actual in-game augmentations for Minecraft, 1.4 will add the eagerly anticipated pet wolves that Mojang showed off videos for a few weeks back. Everyone loves pets, and I'm surprised Mojang has taken this long to introduce new animal features. There are user-mods out there which do wonderful things with the Minecraftia wildlife, not the least of which is the popular Mo' Creatures mod. Check out this video from our friends at the The Yogscast for a detailed look at some of the things this mod adds (look for the birds):
If there are mods that have been out for months that can do that, why aren't they in Minecraft? Let's get that talent and those ideas adopted, Notch!
This week's Minecraft update also adds the ability to change your spawn point, which allows those adventurous journeymen to set a new spawn if they create a home elsewhere from the starting point of a new world. There's nothing more frustrating than dying far away from the spawn.
The last part of of the blog update about the 1.4 Beta Patch is that they're looking into how to handle mods, indicating that the next update will include, "a nice modding API."
Knowing what's in store for the short term, what updates do you want made in the future for Minecraft?
[Update: Check out Game Rant's complete Minecraft 1.4 Update Guide]