Place-Holders in Minecraft

I want to expand on this statement, so I’m de-embedding it from a wall of poetry.
Please note, I’m not trying to diss Minecraft, just venting a complicated frustration. I still love the game, even if some developments have left me wondering why they bothered. It has always struck me that it could be something very much more than it is now.

Several examples of what I mean by “Place-Holder” may be illustrative here.

Hostile Mobs: Undead, Giant Spiders and Exploding green … things. They always struck me as textbook example mobs, and I anticipated the development of more relevant creatures to the environment - like Dr. Zhark’s wildlife (Mo’ Creatures mod). They took a few steps in that direction, cats and horses and bunnies, but left us with daft undead instead of creatures more natural to the environment. Water Mobs? Fat ugly laser fish, and pretty - but largely useless squid. At least give us a graveyard sub-biome as an excuse for the plague of undead…

Villagers: At least there’s some progress here, but they aren’t really a whole lot of use game-wise, more a thing to loot and forget. I expected some kind of village-management thing as a late game feature, but maybe I’ve played with Millenaire too much.

The End: Blimey, it’s ugly. The dragon would be nice if it could be sensible implemented elsewhere, but a black dragon in a monotone dimension? Ecccchhh. A scenario where you defended villages from Red Dragons seemed somehow more reasonable.

Story: The two rather underwhelming story-lines:

  • find Stronghold - fight Dragon
  • find Nether-Fortress - make Wither - make Beacon
    leave a lot to be desired, in complexity and reason. With no in-game mention of them beyond the Achievements page, I’d expect most folk to have to consult a Wiki.

There are probably other nit-picky examples I could find, but they should suffice.

When I first saw Minecraft, I immediately saw the potential for it to expand in a number of ways. The greatest potential I saw was that of third-party modding, becoming many different games in one, some aimed around combat, some puzzle solving, some micro-management, and many more possibilities. The depth of the modding community today has exceeded my expectations despite Mojang’s side of things falling far short of what I anticipated.
At this point, I have an entirely unreasonable desire for them to stop adding new stuff and just bug-fix and complete their API. Leave the new blocks, mobs, items and WGen stuff to third parties who have more inspiration and will. (Grumbles about new features added since alpha)
For sure, the one thing that has kept me playing MC (and running a server) so long is the availability of mods and plugins that do stuff to make MC better (IMHO). I ran a Spoutplugin server with dozens of custom blocks for quite a while, and it added a whole new level of things to do and see. Weird new stuff attracted new players.

So, does anyone else feel that MC has always been waiting for something to fill the void it has inside it, the ghostly Place-Holders left behind by Notch?

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I think that by leaving the story fairly empty Minecraft opens the doors to the modding community to create story lines for Minecraft. This lets the game be as you said many games in one. Though i do feel certain aspects of the game have been waiting for a long overdue overhaul like the villagers and mobs, Minecraft in its current form gives modders plenty of room to play with. The more story line you give minecraft and the more things you do with the villagers and the mobs the less room you have to play with mods. Leaving these areas open has lead to the creation of some amazing mods and plugins.

though i would like to see them actually do something with the giants

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Zombies should have a size tag, and randomly spawn in different sizes, rangeing from tiny (1/2 a block) to the current giant in half block increments.

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