Are you excited at the potential of community-generated mods for Minecraft? Have you found a sweet mod, only to see it unusable with an official Minecraft update releases? Maybe you’ve found a total game-changing mod but it’s next to impossible to install (see: Planes mod)?
Don’t worry, there’s a plan in place which will hopefully resolve most if not, all of these issues. While Notch’s last Minecraft blog entry hinted at potential plan-stopping obstacles relating to modding, but Mojang has thought it over and put a tentative plan together.
The issue before, as Minecraft creator Notch pointed out, was that they needed to figure out a method of officially integrating modding that both prevents mods from breaking when updates are made (check out our Minecraft 1.5 update guide!) to the game and that doesn’t allow for modders to make money off of selling their mods.
What this involves is modders signing up as official “mod developers,” which they were going to charge for initially but have since decided not to (thankfully) due to intense negative feedback from the community. The signed-up mod devs could then access the Minecraft source code and everytime an update is implemented, they’d have full, open access to it as well to implement the necessary augmentations to their mods. Said mods would feature a certificate of sorts to maintain transparency with users to see which authors are working on which, so you can follow your favorites and such.
Mods will be free for download and modders cannot charge for them unless they’re licensed to do so from Mojang. Here are the rules for licensing:
- Mods can only be playable by legitimate Minecraft buyers.
- Cannot make money off of mod unless licensed.
- Mojang holds right to take your mod and use it in official game.
You may be questioning the fairness of a modding team putting together an extensive mod, only to have it licensed then taken by Mojang, preventing you from earning anything from it, but that’s not the goal here.
Their maintaining of the rights to use and implement mods is to allow them to utilize community bug fixes and to not restrict them from implementing things they’re working on just because some modders have something similar.
Notch hints at the bigger picture possibilities as well, including a sort of official “mod marketplace” which would be incredible, so long as we don’t have to pay extra for every little thing. I’m getting harsh flashbacks of Oblivion horse armor, only this time it’s pixelated pig armor.
So, there you have it. Their lawyers need to look it over, but it seems there’s a clearer path ahead for the Minecraft modding community.
Here’s a sample of what can be done with mods, courtesy of our friends from the Yogscast:
Minecraft hits “full” retail on November 11, 2011 but the 90-minute Minecraft demo is available now.
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