You’ve probably heard of the game Minecraft before and wondered why anyone would play it. Usually new players are repelled by its very simple graphics, but once they play Minecraft for a while, the engaging and creative gameplay supersede the need for fancy, high resolution graphics we see in many games today. Luckily for those who are unable to afford the game, there is a free version, which can be played at Minecraft For Free X without any gimmicks. Although the site hosts an older version, online play is still possible on older 1.5.2 servers that have online mode disabled. All the singleplayer modes work flawlessly, which is perfect for a Minecraft newbie.

Getting Wood Achievement

When many new players begin, they wonder to themselves, “What do I do now?” Well, it really depends on what you wish to do. However, in most circumstances, players will want to retrieve wood from a nearby tree. This is commonly referred to as “punching a tree.” Trees are required to craft important things, so you’ll definitely need them to progress. Once you have punched the tree, you will receive the “Getting Wood” achievement.

Crafting Table

Next, you should press ‘E’ to open your inventory. You should see several lines of boxes on top a 2×2 grid of the same boxes, and next to the grid will be another box. Click on the box where you see your wood, move your mouse over one of the boxes on the 2×2 grid, and click. This should place your wood in one of the 2×2 grid boxes, and another item called ‘wooden planks’ will show up in the box next to the grid. Click on that, and move it into your inventory. You will notice that the wood that you originally placed in the grid has disappeared, and this is totally normal. You have done your first crafting.

How to Craft

Now, you may be thinking, what about the mining? Well, you need to do some more crafting first. You now have four (or more) wooden planks, so you should use them to make a crafting table. Put one wooden plank in each box on the 2×2 grid, and you will notice an item labeled ‘crafting table’. Put it into your inventory, and place it on the ground somewhere by right clicking on a block. From now on, right clicking on the crafting table will open up a new area that look like a menu but has different contents. For example, you will see what looks like a menu but it has a 3×3 grid instead of a 2×2 grid. This is what a crafting table looks like.

You might wonder, why use a crafting table? Why can’t I just use the grid in my inventory? Well, on the full size crafting table you have more space which can be used to craft items that you can’t craft in your inventory. For example, the next item you will need cannot be crafted in your inventory. You can make a pickaxe with just wooden planks and sticks on the crafting table. Sticks can be made in your inventory, by just putting one wooden plank on top of the other. To make a pickaxe, put a stick on the bottom-center, another stick in the very center, and fill up the whole top row with wooden planks. Then, a pickaxe will appear in the lonely box. Pick it up, and you are ready to go mining! You can also make a shovel with just the center column, by putting a wooden plank on top of a stick which is on top of another stick. The shovel makes mining dirt much quicker, and the pickaxe mines cobblestone a lot quicker.

Mining

You finally can go mining. Just use your wooden pickaxe to mine the cobblestone (entirely gray) or coal (looks like cobblestone but has black spots.) If you stumble upon what looks like cobblestone but with light brown spots, than you have come across iron. You may notice that you can’t mine the iron with just your wooden pickaxe, so do what you did to make the wooden pickaxe, but instead of wooden planks put cobblestone. Now you have a stone pickaxe! You can use the stone pickaxe to mine iron and lapis lazuli (Dark blue spots). Also, make a furnace by putting cobblestone in every box in a crafting table except for the very central one. Make a chest by doing the same thing except using wooden planks instead of cobblestone. The chest can be used for storing any item, and the furnace can use wood, coal, etc. to smelt different items. Good luck, and enjoy playing Minecraft for free!

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