Sponge is really making me nervous

Sponge is scaring me as a server owner, and here’s why:

It forces me to use a modded server. I’ve never used Forge or anything like it before, because I haven’t had a need to do so before. Now we’re waiting for far too long for the Sponge team to integrate support for a mod (I think it’s a mod…?) that most server owners:

  1. don’t seem to use
  2. have no interest in using

It doesn’t make sense to me - didn’t Sponge begin as a “next step” past Bukkit/Spigot? What happened to it being its own entity, and why is it now completely reliant on the seemingly-very-slow-to-update Forge?

It’s too easy for plugins to turn into mods. With Sponge being a Forge “coremod”, I can see far too many developers choosing to include features in their plugins that require a server- or client-side mod to function. This is only going to make it significantly more difficult for my users to connect and play, since not only do they now have to figure out how to connect to my server in the first place, they also have to figure out how to mod their client. This problem is exacerbated by the fact that I run a server for kids and families - a significant portion of these people barely know how to use a computer in the first place, let alone deal with anything past extreme basic “download Minecraft, double-click, play”.

There’s little to no regard for the years of work put into the community. I can already see that I would lose functionality for most of the Bukkit plugins I run were I to switch to Sponge, given that they are completely incompatible with each other. My server model requires a very specific set of plugins and functionality - enough of which were broken in recent updates anyway - and now Sponge is trying to tell me that I’ll have to throw away almost everything I already have, and just wait along the sidelines for someone to perhaps develop a plugin I need?

Communication seems to be secondary. Past @sk89q and a couple others, I can’t actually think of anyone who is actively working on Sponge. It seems like relaying information to their primary market - server owners - isn’t even a concern, and that if you aren’t an expert Java developer who can decipher the entire API in one look, that you’re not welcome to know what’s going on with the project. How close are we to a release? What is the next thing that needs to happen in terms of making Sponge? What am I going to do as a server owner once Sponge is released? A lot of mystery and misinformation out there, and not a lot of clarification from the people who are actually working on the thing.

I don’t know. Maybe I just haven’t done my research correctly. But Sponge is already rubbing me the wrong way. What are your thoughts?

[EDIT: spelling, grammar, you know]


I don’t agree with your first point. Sponge is (without any plugin or mods installed) completely Vanilla. You are not ‘forced’ to use mods in your server. Although I agree on the other points.

I believe most of your reasons are unfounded and mostly due to lack of research.

  1. Bukkit is also a modded server, what’s your point? Are you scared of Forge? The Sponge implementation will use Forge for convenience, we could just as well have implemented it directly on top of the Minecraft source and lost hours and hours of development time. This has no connection to the Sponge API.
  2. Yes and no. Mods are not scary in themselves. Sponge is at the intersection of Bukkit and Forge, meaning it will both have Forge-like mods and Bukkit-like plugins. This is unavoidable because that is how Sponge is designed. However, you still need to do more research on this. On this very forum there is a thread where at least 400 developers have pledged to port their Bukkit plugins. Yes, BUKKIT plugins. And remember that as a server owner, you choose what sponge mods to include or not so this shouldn’t be an issue.
  3. See number 2. While sponge is a new API it is pretty similar to Bukkit and plugin porting will not be a big deal. There is active effort to build a bridge from Bukkit to Sponge as well, to reduce the effort needed in porting plugins. Sponge resolved that the best way to move forward is to construct a new API that can do what Forge and Bukkit can, and unfortunately this requires some redesigns. But this means that in the long run plugin/mod development will be easier because the API will be (arguably) better.
  4. I agree that Sponge is not very transparent, but you still need to do more research on this. There are people actively working on the API and implementation and are not just sk. And I assure you that we have not assembled an evil coalition of people bent on destroying the modding community. Running .eta in IRC will give an API release date in this month of November. I also recommend that you check the status updates.

I think this is mostly just fear about change and lack of research. Forge and Bukkit are a great projects and Sponge is a work in progress, but as a team we have every intention to continue both the Forge and Bukkit legacy in Sponge. I do agree that our biggest problem is lack of transparency, and I will personally promise to try and make Sponge more transparent. People are already very willing to have discussions in the public IRC channels, and I will try to expand the scope of discussion like this.

Please keep in mind that Sponge is an open-source project just like Bukkit and Forge and everyone can see the development and clone both repositories. This is in contrast to some projects like Husk and Rainbow which are currently closed-source, so Sponge has an advantage in transparency in this respect.


1.) Sponge itself is only an API and has nothing to do with Forge. The first implementation has always been planned to be for Forge though. However, there are 2 more implementations planned: one for Glowstone, a custom server different from Mojang’s Minecraft server, and one for the official Minecraft mod API (Whenever that rolls out). A direct implementations into the MC server is not planned since that is the very reason why Bukkit died.

2.) Sponge plugins that solely use the Sponge API (Which most of them will) will still be vanilla. Anything using NMS or Forge directly would only work with the Forge implementation for now, which would be a silly thing to do for plugin developers.

3.) Well of course Bukkit plugins aren’t compatible with Sponge since they are completely different APIs. However, a lot of Bukkit Plugin developers have alredy said they would port their plugins to Sponge, and for those who won’t be ported there will be a Sponge Plugin that will serve as a Bukkit API running on top of Sponge, allowing you to add Bukkit plugins as well.

4.) They already gave a rough release date for the API, November, and they already said that Fprge is on the way so they’ll be starting on the actual implementation soon. They themselves can’t know the release dates any better. Additionally, there is not really a need for a tutorial or wiki that explains how to set up a Spponge server since Sponge is still unfinished so a server owner knowing how to set up a Sponge server wouldn’t help him/her in any way because they wouldn’t be able to do it anyway.

All good and well. But do you think we have chosen for that? Its good to be critical. But nobody forces you to use sponge or any other API. But Bukkit is just not going to happen mate :frowning:.

Indeed a lot of work went by with bukkit. But sponge and other API’s made many devs think (included me). I am pretty sure we will come out stronger out of this :smile:. Plugin design will become more rough and better patchable to other API’s. It would be stupid as a plugin dev to focus yourself on 1 API. As nobody is sure sponge or any API will get from the ground or stay from the ground (lel).

1 Like

Yes, you will have to use a “Modded” server, however just because it’s modded does not mean that players would have to do anything special to connect to it. The only time you run into this is if you have something that changes the functionality of the core game itself. (IE: Adding new blocks, sounds, particle effects, etc) Plugins have always been limited because of this. *As a side note, Bukkit was a “modded” server!

Now I would like to say that we don’t know much about the plugin API yet, so my next few sentences may change depending on the new API. With that out of the way, plugins have always been limited to on do what the normal minecraft would be able to do on its own. I see no indications of this changing so there should be no “Plugins that turn into mods”. If such things do happen (IE: HungerGames) I’m sure the plugin version will still be updated, if not, there are many devs who would love to help out!

I would just like to say I disagree and read the above comments; they hit everything I was going to.

Does anyone else feel this way? I don’t.

Yes, some of the posts contain some pretty heavy code lingo (and I stress SOME) However, most of the information that we have received have been in layman’s terms. I would also like to point out that yes, the primary market is for server owners. But at this stage of development they are more concerned with the API. This being, the current market is geared towards plugin developers. Don’t get me wrong here… Server owner’s inputs are crucial for development; just not at this stage. As a server owner myself, I am just looking for a release data at this point. The API will be released something this month, which is a wonderful start and signals progress and the server will be ready soon™.

Sponge was built by a community for the community, never forget about that!

Anyway that’s my views on it.

This is the very first time I have ever seen most of this information, let alone in an easy-to-find location. Thanks for all of your input, everyone.

However, I don’t believe that info like this should be as hard to find as it was for me - what’s preventing someone from making an announcement, sticky, whatever-it’s-called-on-Discourse, with all of the great information that has been provided in this thread? That seems like it would almost instantaneously prevent all of the “do your research or go away” threads. Honestly that attitude is what tends to drive me away - seems like the community isn’t helpful unless they believe they’re talking to a smart person.

1 Like

Well, there is something thats called about. It pretty much givey you the gist. Also there is a FAQ kind of thing here:

Also, concerning the thing that you said about knowing how to coede and there being lots of code, yes, obviously thats the case, because the main focus right now is development of the API, and thats what is being discussed.

I do apologize if I offended you in any way. I didn’t mean to have the attitude of:

Now as to find where most* of this information is?

The rest can be found on the FAQ Here

most*: By most I mean the general information about what’s going on, however some of the information given here is found in other threads. To make finding this stuff easy, use the search function! For example, you were worried about the compatibility of bukkit plugins. So lets look up that!:

1st lets get the search function by clicking here:

Now lets search for compatibility and see what it turns up:

Well we have a few choices to choose here. We will take a look two of them.

Current Bukkit Plugins - Make Sponge Compatible The 1st response takes you to Pore - A Bukkit-Sponge Bridge.

Now we see that there is a plugin for Sponge that will do some heavy lifting until developers can port their plugin(s)! Which brings us to the second search result: Plugins to be ported!

The “Plugins to be ported” thread is a great place to see which plugin developers are willing to port their plugins! Here is a direct link to the list. As you can see, it is an very extensive list of 470+ plugins registered!

Now please do not take this post as “Do you think i’m to stupid to do this with out pictures”, but simply as a simple guide for those who may need visuals!


@Kodfod you need way more likes for this. Actually I think we need a sticky thread with this information.


@thomas15v I’m thinking of making a huge thread that contains a bunch of Helpful tips for the site and a sorta guide as to where to find everything. But that only helps so much. If you (or anyone else) have/has any suggestions on what to put in that thread, please feel free to PM me, or post in the thread that I make.


This is the single most helpful post that anybody has ever made on this forum. Thank you so much Kodfod. I really hope you’re able to get this seen by more people, because I believe it will be incredibly helpful for the entire Minecraft community.

Do it well and I will be quite happy to sticky it


@tmad40blue @disconsented @thomas15v What do you guys think it should be called and be about?

I was thinking of the title being something along the lines of: “Hitchhikers Guide Around The Sponge Universe” or something of the sort. And being inside of it would have Different guides such as: How to use the search function (basic and advanced), How to find crucial information (latest, and past official updates), etc.

However, ideas as to what the post should contain (other than the ones listed above) I have a problem thinking of. (mainly because I haven’t had a hard time using the site, so some insight from someone who is/has would be wonderfully helpful)

@disconsented @Kodfod

I’ve made a topic along these lines here:

Let me know what you guys think, what I should add, etc. @Kodfod, I’m going to transplant your “how to search for info” stuff in there if that’s okay with you, because that is really really helpful for those who haven’t used Discourse before.

Glad we’re able to do this for the masses :smile:

@tmad40blue Go for it!!

I will also add more in replies there. (just suggestions and different formatting ideas of the post.)

I can understand your feelings of not being able to answer your questions, but this is already an impressive community project with a lot of people watching and hoping for success. The key implementors are working hard at their highest priorities, which involve getting something out there for everyone to see and hammer on, and not so much the end user communications. At this point the work at hand is largely technical, so it follows that the progress reports and information are still largely technical. As the groundwork is laid, there will be more readily accessible documentation to help people get up to speed, but for now I think the Sponge team is completely heads down on crafting something to show instead of just talk about.

Can I just add to reassure you more. Sponge is not forcing anyone one use a forge server; Sponge is just simply the API. Granite is also now using the Sponge API instead of its own so we are the total Vanilla option. I will be in IRC tonight at 6PM GMT if you have ay questions.