They looked in the direction that the robot was pointing and saw lights in the distance. Dad started in that direction, but they quickly saw a glass and stone structure that extended deep into the ocean.
“That looks like a high-level dungeon. I think we should go back and check out that hut that was by the statue.”
Dad grunted in agreement. Dad rowed to the mysterious hut and got off his boat. Dean stayed in the boat, his crossbow ready in case any drowned came out from the ocean. Seeing him ready, Dad opened the door and entered.
It was a ruined hut. So ruined, in fact, that the roof was leaking rainwater. Dad was impressed. This game did not skimp on the details.
At the end of the hut sat a nice, juicy chest that looked like it might be stuffed with treasure. Stepping forward cautiously, Dad went up to the chest. This all seemed too easy.
No traps anywhere?
Dad waited then sighed, taking a leap of faith and flipping the chest open. Inside of it, he found a spyglass and two books.
Excited, Dad picked up the books and checked out their covers.
“Ye Olde Diary,” it read. This was the first book and Dad could feel his blocky gametime heart beat faster. This was super interesting. He opened up the book, reading the lines within.
“This is yer captain Black Beard speaking. Something sunk my ye olde ship! I made a ye olde statue pointing at ship wreck. Me gonna get my Ol Mates and sail to find them treasures!” it read.
“That’s what the statue is!” Dad exclaimed aloud. “That statue leads to Captain Black Beard’s ship wreck!”
With a hop in his step, Dad kept the items from the chest and turned, exiting the hut. Dean watched him from the boat.
“Find anything good?” he asked.
Dad beamed a blocky, jovial smile. “You mean besides this hut? Yeah, I found a spy glass . . . and some pirate books. I think I found us a quest!”
Dean clapped his hands. “Cool. What’d it say?”
“It’s a book from Black Beard himself!” Dad said, opening the book and showing it to him. “It also appears that his ship sunk by some unknown monster. I’m going to look at the next book.”
Dad paged through the book, and then his eyes went wide. “There’s something else here! Some numbers.” Dad held up the book again to show Dean the page. “What does this mean?” he asked.
“Hold on, Let me check.” Dean took the book from Dad and traced the writing with his fingerless Minecraft hand. “Wait, this isn’t just weird writing. There are coordinates!” Dean shouted.
Dad nodded. “The weird statue. The book says that Black Beard made a statue and it looks like that’s the statue he made. It points to his ship wreck.”
“Oh wow,” Dean said. “I’m going to go to the ship wreck to scout the area. Explore the area here. I’ll be back soon.
Dean headed off into the distance while Dad explored outside of the hut.
Dad finished and decided that maybe he should go back to the hut. It was night time and things were looking dangerous. And just as he was going to go back into the hut, he found something big. Bigger then big. It was a light!
Dad swam over to the light.
And what he saw was a city. Dad had found a city!
He paddled into the harbor, noticing a number of villagers fishing from boats. The place was quite grand — above him spanned bridges through the air, homes dug into the sides of the mountain and placed atop tremendously tall pillars.
He stared at it all, gaping. Then he heard a chuckle and turned in the direction of the chuckler.
“Hello there traveler!” the villager said. He wore the regular robes of a common citizen and was accompanied by another villager of the same stock. “Welcome to Sky City. Is there anything we could help you with?”
Dad smiled and nodded. “Hi there and thanks for having me. I don’t suppose there is a place I could get a room and maybe stay for the night?”
The villager laughed. “Of course there is. This is an Open City! It means that there is lot of zoned but undeveloped land, so any citizen can build their own home here for free! Lots of us villagers have been coming in from all over on account of the free land. It’s quite the city. Hundreds strong and growing every day!”
“Thanks for the information,” Dad said, and he set off to find a nice empty plot in which to build a home. Looking around the village, he saw that much of it was level stone plots carved into the land, with the grassy parts being cultivated and set aside for use by the farmers. There was a large boat in the middle of the harbor, laid to anchor, and for the first time he saw something about the game that he didn’t like.
The large galleon seemed to be immobile.
He sighed, wondering if future versions might let them be Minecraft Pirates sailing the high seas. Then he thought of Dean, heading out to look for the ship wreck.
And as if by magic, there Dean was, paddling through the waters of the city to land right near to where Dad stood.
“Hey Dad,” he said, pulling up against the shore.
“Hey Dean. You find anything?”
Dean shrugged, clambering out and onto the stony plot. “Remember that big high-level dungeon we saw before? Well, it’s next to that. I think that whole zone is going to have to wait for when we have better items and potions.”
Dad smiled. “Well, that’s good news anyways because the reality of things is that we have a permit to build a house here . . .”
Dean laughed. “Yeah, yeah. You and houses. Looks like a good place for it anyways. I mean look at all of this! This whole city is shaped like a cube.”
Dad cocked his head, peering about. “Yeah, it really is! Okay, well, how about we explore. I’m going to mine some coal for torches and for furnace fuel, then I’ll cook up some meat. And when that’s all done, let’s make the best house this town has ever seen!”
The sun was coming up and it would soon be day. Dean and Dad split up, with Dad heading straight for the clumps of coal apparent in the sides of the mountain.
Dean, though, was more curious as to the homes and occupations of the people of the village. What sorts of trades did they offer? Were there any good secrets or quests?
He rubbed his blocky hands together in anticipation. He couldn’t wait to find out!
Dean headed through the village, past a small farm and lots of villager fishermen, up a series of stone steps and some rough unhewn stones, getting up higher so he could get a good picture of the city. In the center of the valley’s lake there was a raised tower structure filled with villagers and beds.
It seemed like an important place. A place worth visiting.
A place with quests!
Dean headed over and went inside. The many villagers babbled and gossiped happily, trading wares and eating good food.
And in the corner of the apparent central marketplace stood two farmers. They were arguing loudly over some grain. Dean went over to them.
“What seems to be the problem, gentlemen?” he asked.
“We’ve got all of these people here now, and we’re growing all of this grain, but nobody knows how to bake it into bread!” the first farmer groused.
The second one glowered. “Fanny, listen to me. All you need to do is cook it over a fire. Anybody can do that.”
“Martin, no, that isn’t right,” the first farmer said. I tried it already. Nothing happens.”
Martin growled and grumped. “I think you just didn’t do it right. Anyways, we need to learn how to make bread. I don’t suppose you can help us out, can you?”
QUEST – MAKE BREAD FOR THE SKY CITY VILLAGERS AND TELL THEM HOW IT WAS DONE.
Dean laughed, accepting the quest. “Okay, where’s your crafting table?”
The two of them gave him an odd look. Other villagers crowded over. “What you’ve got to do is array the wheat in a pattern, see? One after the other in one big conga line.”
Dean did so as they watched, putting together loaf after loaf of bread. One of the villagers began to clap, then all of them were. At the bottom of his vision a ticker read, QUEST COMPLETE and he smiled.
“Thanks for your help, stranger!” Martin and Fanny said. They handed over five of the bread loaves. “Keep these in appreciation of your work. Now we can make delicious bread for all of the citizens of Sky City!”
Dean took the bread and thanked the villagers, then walked off in search of more quests. If they were fast and easy like that one had been, then this city was going to be a cake walk!
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