There are plenty of Minecraft modifications out their for Mojang’s record-breaking game, but very few have achieved the popularity and range of features that the Pixelmon mod has (at least, for the right reasons). The Pokemon-based mod allows gamers to interact and battle with multiple Pokemon across several generations of the popular series, and a recent update to Pixelmon has once again caught the attention of the Minecraft community by introducing even more features.
Pixelmon has been in development for years, and it started with simple mods modeled after some of the original 150 starter Pocket Monsters. With the latest update, it’s become quite apparent that the modification has grown in leaps and bounds – aside of being able to own a plethora of Pokemon and have them battle other beasts on the fly, gamers can now use some of their special abilities to interact with the main Minecraft world.
In Pixelmon, wild Pokemon populate the world and will even occasionally drop useful in-game items upon defeat, providing that the player didn’t use a Pokeball to try and capture them. These items make sense in comparison with the Pokemon that gets defeated – for instance, a Muk will often drop slime balls, and a Bulbasaur will drop either seeds or vines. Even materials such as Moon Stone or Water Stone can be used to craft tools and armor, which greatly expands the number of tools players can utilize.
The latest update brings environment-impacting commands like Explode or Dig into the game, and each ability levels with the Pokemon who uses it – for instance, a Diglett that is only level 5 can only make a small hole in the ground, whilst a Level 100 would be able to instantly make a large hole for players to go through and pick up the blocks. It’s a great concept, and the modification seems to be well-polished and free of bugs (although not free of Bug-type Pokemon).
There are several servers available which host the Minecraft mod, allowing trainers to hop online, name their Pokemon, and level them up as they face off against the companions of other players. When a Pokemon gets hurt or faints, trainers will have to either sleep in a bed, or craft the classic Pokemon Healer machine to restore them to full health. Despite this, there’s no word on any potential Nurse Joy NPC yet, unfortunately.
Pixelmon came under heavy controversy within the Minecraft community several years ago, when the developers introduced some ‘backdoor’ coding in an update which allowed them to prevent the modification from being played on certain servers. Fans were unhappy about the addition of DRM coming in unannounced, and the backdoor script was eventually removed by the devs.
Minecraft itself hasn’t seen a large update in almost a year, but lead Minecraft developer Jeb Bergensten recently confirmed he was working on a new dungeon type with brand new mobs. It’s almost certainly not Pokemon-related, but it seems like gamers have that fix well covered thanks to the Pixelmon modification.