From Blocks to Bricks
Conceptualised by Swedish programmer Markus ‘Notch’ Persson, Minecraft is best known as being a massively popular video game by developer Mojang Studios. The vanilla iteration of the game was debuted in 2009, and since this pivotal moment, it has gained the title of best-selling video game in history. This success can be attributed to its unique concept, which gives players the freedom to explore a procedurally generated sandbox environment presented in the shape of blocks. The simplistic visuals lend themselves to the addition of user-created mods, including one that transforms the environment into an interactive space composed of LEGO bricks.
The two sharing a similar aesthetic, it seemed inevitable that Mojang Studios and The LEGO Group would combine their two ideas, and this presumption was soon revealed to be accurate. With the support of the gaming community, Mojang (headed by Carl Manneh) used the LEGO Ideas program to convince the brand to invest in these new toys.
The first LEGO Minecraft sets flooded the toy market in 2012, allowing players to continue their block-building journey in the real world. To guarantee that fans could immediately recognise the franchise, each set — or rather, each crafting box — included unique locations, objects, and characters (in the form of Minifigures), all of which resembled their in-game counterparts. Known as Micro Worlds, they featured a removable surface that, when exposed, would reveal caves laden with ores, minecart tracks, and rivers.
Explore the LEGO Minecraft World
Anyone who is familiar with Minecraft knows that it is a game of near-infinite possibilities. Starting their first night with nothing but a basic skin (usually that of Steve, the default mascot for the franchise), players are presented with a slew of choices. Most sensible adventurers focus on gathering readily available materials, with which they can begin constructing a basic house to protect themselves from the mobs that roam the wilderness during the night. Once the necessities have been satisfied, the world is ready to be explored, and no two players’ experiences are ever the same, as the map is populated by completely randomised landmarks: villages, dungeons, mountain caves, and fortresses.
Compared to the game itself, Minecraft LEGO sets are the next best way to immerse yourself in this sandbox world. Start by building a house, then expand your one-person shack into an entire village, complete with a farm and horse stable. Eventually, when the green-hilled landscapes lose their lustre, you might find yourself drawn to portals that lead to dimensions beyond the familiar: the End and the Nether. One is a dark void inhabited by the fearsome Ender Dragon, while the other is a fiery hellscape.
LEGO Minecraft Characters & Mobs
Every set created for this line is made to the scale of ordinary LEGO Minifigures, and in the case of the game’s many hostile NPCs featured in the early Micro Worlds sets, they are called Micromobs. In addition to this, the brand has also made what they term Bigfigs, which are larger than ordinary figures that emphasise one character.
As any long-term fan of the series would expect, LEGO Minecraft sets include the franchise’s voiceless protagonists (Steve and Alex, armed with their signature iron sword) and their enemies, the mobs. Said enemies include the creeper, zombie, skeleton, golem, wither, Enderman, and Ender Dragon. However, these aren’t the only NPCs roaming the land; there are dozens of animals, some of which are sheep, pigs, horses, bees, and even pandas.