DE Servers and Mods



So we looked at how a server works,  and how lots of people can join a server at one time…to do this we used everyone’s favorite game – MineCraft!



As if this wasn’t exciting enough for everyone, we returned to look at how we can set up different ports that are able to use different information….meaning we could run several games at once using different versions of MineCraft.














Wow. can we top that I hear you ask…YES WE CAN!! By changing the Server properties we can adjust many factors, such as the world we play in, the rules of the game and even change if monsters will spawn!






After we had sorted all this out, we looked at entering simple commands into the server to make changes in-game….such as giving someone the power of being OP!!!!







Have a look here at a list of whats possible!





So now we know how the server works and how we can make changes to the way the game is played, it’s time to move onto the next step……

minecraft mods

 Click above to learn more!



mod or (modification) is the alteration of the program code of a video game in order to make it operate differently from its original version. They are often made by members of the public to improve gaming experience, or add a new dimension to the gameplay:

They can be small ‘add-ons’ like a new weapon, or they can be Partial Conversions where the gameplay is changed, or even full conversions where the looks, gameplay and genre can even be changed:


By adding mods into the game directory, we can change and add to the original game. There are literally thousands of different mods out there, some made by the game developer, but most made by the general public…and where do we get these  mods from? The internet of course!






Some mods need a ‘base loader’, a piece of code which helps the game interpret many different mods – the current most used base mod is called ‘Forge’

Forge also acts as an installer, which puts all the modified code in the right places for you, making it easier to run a successful mod!




This is a type of coding that is used in most game mods. It is a series of ‘short codes’ or ‘identifiers’ that are the building blocks of the games. If you want to create your own mod…START LEARNING JAVA NOW!!

It may seem complicated at first, but the more you dig in and learn – the easier it becomes! Don’t let it scare you, once you get a hang of the basic commands, you will be surprised how quickly it will fall into place.












Have a look at this JavaScript tutorial

Plus there are loads of tutorials on creating MineCraft mods online – get your head round java and try your hand at creating something!!












Skins refer to the way that your character looks in the game. We learnt how to create our own skins for MineCraft – Although to do this from scratch takes some coding knowledge and some modelling skills, there are plenty out there to help us create and design our own skins:

The tool that proved most successful was a site called


NovaSkin allowed us to take an existing 3d model of a MineCraft character and apply our own colouring over the top to create a new look. It was good to get a sense of a very basic wire-frame model that acts as the skeleton for any new character design.


We were also able to look around the model in a 3d environment which helped us to appreciate the difference between 2 dimensions and 3…











We had to start thinking in 3d which is harder than it sounds – even just colouring in 3d can be difficult, don’t forget under the arms! When looking from face on it our skins looked good but  slight adjustment in perspective revealed what was left to be done!

After thinking ‘in the round” for a while, it started to make sense, and we ended up managing to create a full 3d skin. Once we had this skin we generated it again with our character in a slightly new position…to create a new frame. By stitching all these frames together we actually managed to make an animation of our characters!

The final stage was to render out our skins into 2d sets – which allows them to be viewed as a flattened 2d image, and also allows them to be uploaded onto our characters in Minecraft – and hey-presto! We have created a skin we can use in game!


A Sprite is usually a 2 dimensional image or animation that is placed in a larger scene. Originally sprites were made to be separate animations for a game, so that the player could move the character independently of the scenery. Computer animation has evolved a lot since the old 8-bit and 16-bit days, but the principles have stayed the same. A character sprite is animated using frames or computer animation, and then placed on top of the background in order to create a movable character.

A great example is an old classic – sonic the hedgehog!

So as we can see, each image is a different stage of animation, that when run together creates an animated sprite.

A great way we looked at the differences between sprites and scenery was with the website Sploder

This is a website that allows us to build different types of side scrolling games, by building the background, the obstacles and inserting the characters or sprites. It helped us look at the many different layers of game building – from creating good scenery, to adding interactive obstacles and finally adding animated sprites to be involved in the world. We stripped it back to make it as simple as possible as to get into more complicated game building, we need to understand the very basics (literally the building blocks!)

So once we had got used to how sprites are animated, and how they differ from scenery by building our own simple games, we had a look at creating our own simple 8bit sprites. In professional game making, creating sprites is an extremely involved process, starting with drawing concept art, to creating finished drawings, to using 3d modelling technology to make images digital, and then of course the animation process. However by working on 8-bit (or ‘Old-School!’) art, it is possible to make our own sprites and give them some sort of animation – and even place them in our game.

We used a simple ‘chess board’ plan to enable us to see each individual pixel of our creations. it also gives us a good guide for proportions, and by using different layers we can change each image slightly to create the animation effect:

Have a look at some of the characters we have made:

Iron manTony starkfacehuggerWar MachineHulkbuster xenomorph TitleDr Doom Ironpatriot Modok Rhodie



We even created a game using our own characters:

So we know how to create our own basic skins and sprites we’re on the way!