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The Evolution Of Minecraft Ores Explained

"Minecraft" is one of those titles that just about everyone knows. Even for people who haven't been around video games, it's hard to ignore when a game is this successful. With constant updates and game support, "Minecraft" has manages to keep things fresh for its players. In the newest update, the game is looking to update the visuals of some of its most important blocks: ores.


What originally started off as an unassuming indie game has skyrocketed into one of the most successful games on the market. After Microsoft bought the game, it continued to grow more and more. Although there were concerns that Microsoft would somehow ruin the "independent spirit" of the game, "Minecraft" has continued to flourish, and it's now onto Version 1.17, also known as the "Caves & Cliffs: Part 1" update.

For longtime players, of the most notable alterations in "Caves & Cliffs" was the visual update for ores. To be able to do pretty much anything in "Minecraft," players have to mine ores and collect materials. These ores allow players to build and craft impressive armor sets, buildings, and even weapons as they explore the world. Now, these ores have a new look that shakes things up for devoted.


Every ore that was changed

Some of the most prominent ores in the game have seen a visual update in "Cliffs & Caves," including Redstone, Iron, Gold, and Coal. These ore blocks, prior to mining them, will look a bit different than before. A post on the r/Minecraft subreddit shows the new blocks side by side with the old versions, giving fans a clearer picture of how they will be altered.


For the most part, not too much has changed, except for the pattern of colors. Before, the only notable difference between the ores was the color. The new update has made it so that the actual patterns on each block are different, which is a huge help for fans who are colorblind. Texture packs were really the only way to solve this problem before the 1.17 update, and fans directly impacted by the retextures were beyond excited.

Gold Ore was the only ore to also have a significant change in its color. Now sporting darker reds and yellows, the ore looks very different from the original. Emerald Ore, Lapis Ore, and Blackstone were also slightly altered, according to the patch notes. However, it's not apparent enough for anyone to have struck any fans as a major change. Copper has also been added into the game, and it has some interesting properties of its own — its color will actually change as the material ages.


The one ore Minecraft doesn't want to change

Avid "Minecraft" fans might notice that one iconic ore was left off the list of changes. The ore in question, Diamond, is the only ore that's staying the same. Its original pattern and sky blue color weren't updated at all, a decision that the developer has directly explained the thought process behind.


The patch notes point out why Diamond Ore isn't being tampered with: quite simply, it's just too well-known and pretty already. "Being the most iconic ore, Diamond Ore texture is staying the same to keep that classic feel maintained," the patch notes read.

This consistency and loyalty to the look of Diamond Ore was probably a smart decision, as a lot of fans were already on the fence with the update to begin with. If Diamond Ore had gone through any changes, as Reddit user iLoveStarsInTheSky said, the "community would collectively lose its [mind]." Another user, Originalitie, mentioned that Diamond "deserves" to keep the iconic, classic look that long-time players know and love.

This isn't the first time 'Minecraft' has retextured its game

"Minecraft" is over a decade old, and so it's seen its fair share of updates. While the game isn't the most graphically intense game on the market, there's a lot of thought that goes into the visuals.

In 2018, there were several texture updates for the game, the most infamous one being a gravel update that upset players. Ores were also changed early in 2018, so 1.17 isn't the first time they've been updated. However, these latest design alterations are definitely the most noticeable.


One of the game's previous updates included a short interview with Lead Pixel Artist Jasper Boerstra. He mentioned that he made over 100 versions of cobblestone in order to find the design that felt just right — for a game made of pixel blocks, there's a lot of effort being put into the design work.

There are also a ton of user-created mods that can alter the textures for everything in "Minecraft." In fact, these mods are so popular that they've made creators a staggering amount of money. While these fan creations are not officially published by Microsoft, they're definitely one way to spice up the look of the game outside of official means.