And creepers are tough little guys. It takes several arrows to kill just one.
I learned quickly that building a house on a foundation of sand and dirt is a terrible idea when creepers are around, so I changed my design plans. I converted my second home from a small wooden structure on top of a dirt mound to a large stone castle with a thick stone base that can only be entered by climbing a ladder. I even dug out the sand beneath the thing to stack the stone even deeper.
I had a brilliant idea during construction: I could surround the entrance to my mine with stone, and then connect it to my castle with a hallway. That way, I wouldn't have to endure the nasty creatures while traveling between my castle and my mine at night. Oh, I wished I'd have thought of that sooner!
I was still spending large amounts of time fending off creepers each morning, but I could do so from a relatively safe place inside my castle. Of course, I found myself constantly filling in the holes these guys were blasting in my beautiful beach.
Mining was riddled with its own set of problems. First of all, there are underground caves in the world of Minecraft. Tons of them. Some of these are fairly small, while others sprawl for miles, sprouting off-branches that twist and turn endlessly into the labyrinthine deeps. I literally spent twelve hours one lazy Sunday exploring a single cave and never found the ends of all of its offshoots.
And monsters like to hide in these caves. While you can run around on the surface during daylight hours with a relative amount of peace, there is no daylight underground. I could never be sure whether or not something devious was lurking around the next bend. The groan of a zombie, the click-clack of a skeleton, or the hiss of a creeper would send me running back to my castle with my heart pounding.
Even worse, I could never be sure what was above me. It's all too common to find myself digging upward into a lava pool, causing a waterfall of molten magma to set fire to my human flesh. Less commonly, I would find gravel deposits that would collapse down on me, suffocating me in a narrow space.
Even with all its dangers, mining was becoming an incredibly addictive facet of the game. I was stretching my underground empire like a colony of ants, often up until the wee hours of the morning. I can definitely see this project consuming massive amounts of my time in the near future. But first I'm going to have to take care of this creeper problem…
CCC Freelance Writer