Minecraft is going mobile, and you can play now. Well, as long as you fit certain criteria. Minecraft Earth takes the iconic building game into the real world with a system much like Pokémon GO's. A map matching the geography of the real world appears on your phone's screen, and you can interact with certain locations in Minecraft's signature blocky form. Minecraft Earth is in closed beta right now and is sure to be in-demand. If you want to get in on the action, read on.
How To Sign Up For Minecraft Earth Beta
The current beta for Minecraft Earth has some limitations. First and foremost, you have to live in one of five cities to take part– London, Mexico City, Seattle, Stockholm, and Tokyo. Second, you have to have access to iOS 10 or Android 7.0 Nougat. Finally, you have to have a Microsoft or Xbox Live account to attach your profile to. If you can meet all of those requirements... you're still not guaranteed a spot. But you can sign up for the beta by following this link.
How Minecraft Earth Plays
As you might expect, Minecraft Earth tracks your location via GPS and puts you a map of your surrounding location. The map is rendered in the style of Minecraft, and nearby points of interest become activities. Tapables are one of the more common ones. Much like Pokéstops in Pokémon GO or the Inns of Harry Potter: Wizards Unite, Tapables give you items when you tap on them.
The more meaty interactions are called Adventures. These are tied to specific real-world landmarks and let you play various mini-games. Things like fighting monsters or interacting with blocky animals.
The main attraction is Build Plates. This function lets you do what Minecraft does best. You collect blocks throughout the game as rewards for Tapables or Adventures. The Build Plate is where you go to use these blocks and build whatever your heart desires. But kids will probably play this game, so we're sure developer Mojang has put some kind of censor on certain shapes.
Mojang has said that Minecraft Earth will be free-to-play come when it fully releases, reports Digital Trends. There will be in-app purchases, but only to speed things up. That's where the next part comes in.
Rubies, And How To Get Them
The Android beta is finally here! We’re hard at work rolling out the update in five cities: Seattle, London, Tokyo, Stockholm, and Mexico City. Happy crafting everyone!— Minecraft Earth (@minecraftearth) August 30, 2019
↣ https://t.co/H3Ye8o64JV ↢ pic.twitter.com/z575yKmYXV
Rubies are the name of Minecraft Earth's currency. Like with many mobile games, you can earn them through playing or buy them with real-world money. Or rather, you will be able to when the full game launches. For most of the beta period, Rubies have been disabled. The feature has only just been added in with the launch of the Android version of Minecraft Earth.
Rubies can be used to purchase Build Plates. As said before, Build Plates are where you can use blocks to build. So by having more Build Plates, you can spread your creations all throughout the world. Or at least throughout London, Mexico City, Seattle, Stockholm, and Tokyo during the beta. The nice thing is that Rubies are tied to your Xbox/Microsoft account, not the app, so they'll stick with you through the beta and beyond.
At the moment, Rubies are only available in the Android version. Mojang prioritized this because the Android version of Minecraft Earth came out later than the iOS one. So now it's Apple users' turn to wait. Mojang says iOS beta players will get Rubies "soon" but gave no specific date.
Minecraft Takes Time
Just like building something great in actual Minecraft, waiting for Minecraft Earth will take time and patience. The beta looks promising but is also quite exclusive. Good luck getting in, and to those who did: build some cool stuff for the rest of us to see when the game fully releases!