Minecraft is the most selling game of all time. It is a 3D survival sandbox video game developed and published by Mojang Studios. Minecraft has got a version for nearly every major platform like Bedrock Edition for gaming consoles like PlayStation 4, Xbox and Nintendo Switch, Java Edition for Windows and Mac, Education Edition for iPad, and even a Pi Edition for the Raspberry Pi.
The Raspberry Pi version of Minecraft is the only version that offers us a programmable interface, allowing the players to build codes and permits them to customize the game. Pi Edition is based on Pocket Edition Alpha v0. 6.1 an older version of the Pocket Edition for Android with some withdrawn features for running the game smoothly on the Pi board. It is the Minecraft: Java Edition 1.15.1 provided with a Python API and wrapped up in the Raspbian OS. This edition is free to download and can be installed very easily by anyone. You can even install the full version(Java edition) on your Raspberry Pi 4 which will be mentioned at the end of this article.
Let us now have a look at the requirements which you will be requiring to turn your Raspberry Pi board into a portable Minecraft game that can be played on any suitable monitor.
To play Minecraft: Java Edition on your Raspberry Pi, you will be needing the following requirements:
- A Raspberry Pi 1,2,3 or 4 (Preferably Pi 4) with Raspbian Operating System installed in it.
- A power cable that is compatible with your Raspberry Pi board.
- An Ethernet cable or active Wi-Fi connection.
- A Micro SD card.
- An external keyboard that can be connected to your Pi board.
- An external monitor to display the game.
Now, Since you have all the required tools, let’s get started with installing Minecraft on your Pi board but before installing it on your Raspberry Pi, you need to first update the board.
1. Updating The Raspberry Pi
You need to check if your Raspberry Pi system has the latest version installed in it before installing Minecraft. If not, then you can update your Raspberry Pi by entering the following command:
sudo apt-get update && sudo apt-get -y upgrade
2. Setting Up The Raspberry Pi
You need to ensure that Java and java compiler is installed in your Raspberry Pi because Microsoft works on java. There to check if your Raspberry Pi has a java compiler, you need to enter the following commands:
Java versions may differ from person to person but if it is not showing you any version then you will have to install Java SDK.
3. Installing Minecraft On Raspberry Pi With Raspbian
You will need to run commands on the command terminal of Raspbian, the default OS for Raspberry Pi. Fortunately, Raspbian comes with a Pre-installed Minecraft Pi edition so you may already have it.
But, if due to some reason your system does not contain pre-installed Minecraft, then you just have to run the following command at the command prompt in the terminal window which will be the 4th icon from the left. The following command will install Minecraft Pi Edition and the Python libraries required to interact with it:
sudo apt install minecraft-pi
You can run the Minecraft Pi by simply clicking on its Desktop icon or by entering the following command line:
4. Launching The Minecraft Server
There are many Minecraft server mods available that allow you to customize and add features to your server. Craftbukkit, Spigot, and Mojang’s Vanilla are some of the best Minecraft servers to modify the settings. We will be using Spigot Minecraft server since it is considered to be the most optimized plugin for small Minecraft servers.
STEP 1: Creating the Minecraft Folder.
For Creating the Minecraft folder, these are the steps to be followed:
STEP 2: Downloading the build tools.
The tools that are required for launching the server can be downloaded by clicking on the following link.
STEP 3: Building the Server Package.
The Server Package can be downloaded by entering the following commands:
sudo java -jar BuildTools.jar
File building is the most time-consuming task overall. It may take around one to two hours depending on your internet speed.
When the downloading will be completed, you will be able to see a spigot-[version].jar file created in your system’s Minecraft folder.
Now, after the folder is created, you need to follow the further steps very carefully to launch your server.
STEP 4: Launch the Server.
Enter the following code to launch the server also make sure that you enter the correct version number of Spigot that you’ve downloaded.
sudo java -Xms512M -Xmx1008M -jar /home/minecraft/spigot- [version].jar nogui
Once you launch the server it will automatically stop to confirm the license agreement. This will happen only once in the beginning.
STEP 5: Opening the End-User License Agreement (EULA).
You need to open the EULA file by entering the following command:
sudo nano eula.txt
To accept the EULA you need to change ‘False’ to ‘True’. After changing this, press Ctrl > X to save this change and exit the window.
STEP 6: Re-launch the Server once again.
Once the above procedure is completed, you are required to re-launch the server by entering the same command:
sudo java -Xms512M -Xmx1008M -jar /home/minecraft/spigot-[version].jar nogui
This step will take time like around half an hour since the procedure of building the map will take place.
5. Connecting to the Raspberry Pi Minecraft Server
After following the above steps, your Minecraft server is online on your local network. To access the server, you need to launch Minecraft on your computer then click on Play > Servers > Add server. Enter the new server details, along with its new name and the IP address.
To know the IP address of your server you can enter the following command in the command terminal:
sudo hostname -I
After entering the IP address you can select the server to start playing.
You can even connect another Raspberry Pi to this new server so you can play local Minecraft. For this, you will need to follow these steps:
1. Open the Minecraft pi in the Game option.
2. Start the game on the server Raspberry Pi.
3. From another Raspberry Pi, click on the Join game option, and then your server IP will be displayed, select it, and voilà! You have it.
6. Configuring Your Server
You will need to configure your Minecraft server once it is working well on your Raspberry Pi computer. If it has no further issues, you will have to edit the server properties. To set the properties of your server, use the following command:
sudo nano /home/minecraft/server.properties
You can find the details of the server properties by clicking here.
While editing the properties of your server remember that Raspberry Pi isn’t powered by any high-speed processor, therefore the changes should be made keeping this point in mind.
7. Installing A Plugin (Optional)
Once you have completed the configuration, you can install a plugin so that Minecraft does not consume too much of your Raspberry Pi’s RAM. NoSpawnChunks is the best plugin to prevent high RAM consumption by the Minecraft server.
Before installing the plugin, you first need to open the plugin subdirectory by entering the following command:
After this, you can download the NoSpwanChunks.jar file by using this command:
sudo wget -O NoSpawnChunks.jar http://ci.dmulloy2.net/job/NoSpawnChunks/
Congratulations! You have successfully created your own custom Minecraft server on Raspberry Pi and now you can enjoy this game.
Installing Minecraft Java Edition
The full version of Minecraft i.e. the Java Edition can also be installed on your Raspberry Pi (2 or above). Whichever Pi you are using remember that it should be overclocked 2.1 GHz and GPU at 750 MHz. This edition is not free to play, you will need to have a Minecraft account or login through your existing Minecraft account in order to play this version on your Raspberry Pi. Raspberry Pi supports Minecraft: Java Edition 1.14.4 version.
As I had mentioned earlier, now I’ll be providing you the steps installing Minecraft Java Edition on your Raspberry Pi.
STEP 1: Installing Pi Apps:
Pi Apps is basically an app store for Open Source Projects on the Raspberry Pi. It makes the installation of applications on Raspberry Pi very straightforward. For installing Pi-Apps you need to enter the following command in the command terminal:
wget -qO- https://raw.githubusercontent.com/Botspot/pi-apps/master/instal
You can even install other useful applications available on Pi Apps.
STEP 2: Installing Java:
To install Java, you simply need to go to the official website of Java or click here. After reaching to the official website, click on the big red button to install java.
STEP 3: Select Minecraft Java:
Once you open the Pi Apps, you will be able to see various other applications available on the store. Select Minecraft Java and click on install, the remaining task will be done by itself. This step is pretty quick, hence won’t consume much of your time.
STEP 4: Sign in/log in to your Minecraft Account:
After the installation is completed, the Minecraft launcher will appear in the games section of your dropdown menu. Open the Minecraft Launcher and log in/sign up to your Minecraft Account. After this is done, you will need to open the Profile Editor which will be the third option on the top bar of the new window.
Under the Version Selection which will be the second option, click on the drop down beside the Use Version sub-option and change it to the latest version.
STEP 5: Modify The Java Settings.
Now come to the third option which is Java Settings (Advance). Under this, click on the box left to JVM Arguments sub-option. On the right, you will see a line that mentions Xmx 1G. What you have to do is change the 1G to 2G, this will assign 2 GB of RAM instead of the default 1GB to the Java Edition and will improve its performance.
Now you can experience a complete version of Minecraft edition which you get on a pc. Though there will be visible frame drops seen and will work on the lowest graphic settings, the gameplay is tolerable.
Wrapping It Up
The Minecraft Pi Edition is free to download and can be installed easily but it does not provide the complete Minecraft experience. Some of its drawbacks are :
1. The world will have a maximum size of 256 x 256 x 128 blocks since it works on the old game world format.
2. Mobs are not present in the Pi Edition.
3. The Pi Edition supports only one game mode this is creative. Therefore you would not be able to play survival or hardcore modes in this version.
In spite of its drawbacks, this version is very interesting to work on using Raspberry Pi. You can also interact with the game world using Python, which is a very fascinating way to explore programming.
If you want to play on Minecraft a small LAN network with your friends or family then the Raspberry Pi Edition is totally made for you. Although the graphics of the game are quite manageable, it is still fun to play this game on a network with other people.
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