Newer players often like to explore, but once they stop exploration, especially in an abandoned mine, they get lost and end up somewhere totally different, away from home. Short of remembering where you last slept and copying the X, Y, and Z values for future editing back to spawn/preferred place, use the following tricks to never get lost:
Explore systematically: If you find a fork in the road, or multiple forks, take them one at a time. When you reach an end, and mining near it yields nothing, then either mark it or use a common block (like gravel) to seal a path off.
Set breadcrumbs: While mining and exploring, be sure to mine up bits of the floor, using cobblestone or a block different from the floor as a pointer to the way out; or an ore block to note an intersection, so you have something to identify where you began later. While this will damage your pick more, knowing the way back is more valuable than a tool, especially since the wooden planks in abandoned mines are abundant.
Keep natural landmarks: Scoop up the first source of water that leads to nowhere, but leave everything else. Some of the water flowing from walls may be useful for exploration. Also, if there is lava out of your way, do not go out of your way to put it out -- it emits light, which may be encased in a structure with glass (panes) as natural lighting.
Know the way outside, and know when there is lava: Torches emit a bright light that fades into warmer tones. Lava has a brighter radius of light, meaning its brightest point is larger. If you see light that you did not create, then it is obviously a lava pool. Outside light on the other hand uses cooler tones. When you are near ground, it does not have the warmth of torch light, taking on a more fluorescent white color near the rock, or at night time, a light shade of blue.
Obsidian is a block that takes 15 to 50 seconds to collect. It requires 15 seconds with a diamond pickaxe, and 50 seconds with anything else. If you are wanting to make a near-indestructible building or structure, obsidian the best choice. Sometimes it is naturally occurring, but often times it must be manually made. First, you will need to find flat lava that is not flowing. Then, collect water with a bucket, and put the water onto the lava. Alternately, find flat water and collect lava. A blackish-purplish block should appear, which is obsidian, and requires a long time to collect. It is much easier to just spawn obsidian, but you will need a mod to be able to spawn it in Single Player mode.
Many Minecraft players like to play a free-for-all game called "Spleef". It basically consists of two or more players creating a square stadium (approximately 15 to 20 blocks long or wide) that is floating or above lava or water. The object of the game is to destroy the blocks (stone and dirt are best) around your opponents either with or without tools. Players can choose whichever tools to use, but you can also set rules (for example, no diamond pickaxes). The goal is for the players to try and make their opponents fall through the stadium to eliminate them. The last player standing is the winner.
Successfully complete one of the following tasks to get a trophy:
- Awarded All Trophies (Platinum): All trophies have been awarded.
- Taking Inventory (Bronze): Open your inventory.
- Getting Wood (Bronze): Punch a tree until the block of wood pops out.
- Benchmarking (Bronze): Craft a workbench with four blocks of wooden planks.
- Time to Mine! (Bronze): Use planks and sticks to make a pickaxe.
- Hot Topic (Bronze): Construct a furnace out of eight cobblestone blocks.
- Acquire Hardware (Silver): Smelt an iron ingot.
- Time to Farm! (Bronze): Use planks and sticks to make a hoe.
- Bake Bread (Silver): Turn wheat into bread.
- The Lie (Silver): Bake a cake using wheat, sugar, milk and eggs!
- Getting an Upgrade (Bronze): Construct a better pickaxe.
- Delicious Fish (Silver): Catch and cook a fish!
- On A Rail (Gold): Travel by minecart to a point at least 500m in a single direction from where you started.
- Time to Strike! (Bronze): Use planks and sticks to make a sword.
- Monster Hunter (Bronze): Attack and destroy a monster.
- Cow Tipper (Bronze): Harvest some leather.
- When Pigs Fly (Gold): Use a saddle to ride a pig, then have the pig get hurt from fall damage while riding it.
- Leader Of The Pack (Silver): Befriend five wolves.
- MOAR Tools (Bronze): Construct one type of each tool (one pickaxe, one spade, one axe and one hoe).
- Dispense With This (Silver): Construct a Dispenser.
- Into The Nether (Silver): Construct a Nether Portal.
- Sniper Duel (Silver): Kill a skeleton with an arrow from more than 50 meters.
- DIAMONDS! (Gold): Acquire diamonds with your iron tools.
- Return to Sender (Gold): Destroy a Ghast with a fireball.
- Into Fire (Silver): Relieve a Blaze of its rod.
- Local Brewery (Silver): Brew a potion.
- The End? (Gold): Enter an End Portal.
- The End. (Gold): Kill the Enderdragon.
- Enchanter (Silver): Construct an Enchantment Table.
- Taking Inventory (Bronze): Open your inventory.