Minecraft, depending on your viewpoint, is either a unique game which celebrates the awe-inspiring things you can create with some dedication and patience, or a unique game which celebrates how much stuff you can avoid doing because you’re too busy lugging hunks of sandstone around a 16-bit blocky environment. There is no actual point to the game, aside from avoiding getting yourself killed by lumbering monsters when night falls, and most of your time is invariably spent slavishly gathering resources for some comically outlandish construction project. The fun of the game is in the open-endedness and ultimately, the pointlessness of the experience; it challenges you to be creative and shape the landscape any way you choose. Most people use this freedom to build some physics-defying sky palace or a trap-littered subterranean dungeon, but some aren’t satisfied with such fickle creations, and instead spend their time on things like...
\#15 – Planet Earth
Someone building a globe-version of the entire planet Earth is a pretty impressive place to start, especially when you see the sheer scale of what has been accomplished. The continents have been painstakingly crafted onto a goliath blue globe, with sufficient detail to show the general terrain and geological details like the continental rises and mid-ocean trenches. It’s hollow too, and if you walk inside and crane your head up to the North Pole, you’ll see that somebody has etched profanity into the underside. Even when you’re spending weeks making a replica of our home planet, you’ve got to have a bit of fun.
Related: YouTube: MineCraft - Earth
\#14 – Sonic the Hedgehog mini game
Minecraft is so versatile you can even turn it into an actual ordinary game, as the 3D, Sonic the Hedgehog-inspired creation shows. The map has checkpoints, TNT-operated springs and a stopwatch powered by “redstone.”
\#13 – Space shuttle
This space shuttle created in Minecraft is a towering monument to space exploration, accurately captured and with an impressively vast scale. It’s actually found within a whole space centre complex, but stands out as particularly jaw-dropping.
\#12 – Playable guitar
Taking things to the next level, the creator of the Sonic the Hedgehog mini game also made an admittedly gigantic but actually playable guitar. Chords are programmed in to pressure plates, with ten available in total for you to play around with. Producing music means running around between pressure plates, but it’s still playable, making it a pretty impressive feat. Even though you could argue it’s just a glorified keyboard, given the method of operation.
Related: Planet Minecraft: Playable guitar
\#11 – Moment of Impact
This aptly-named creation is described by Wooraah, who made it, as “my take on a snapshot of the moment a meteorite collides with a Minecraft world.” It’s a cacophony of blocks, all centred around a stunning point of contact where the meteorite is striking the surface and burrowing its way through the terrain. This was actually made twice, because he accidently set the whole thing on fire with lava the first time around.
\#10 – Hogwarts (Harry Potter)
As part of the frequent use of Minecraft to reach new depths of uber-fandom, the Hogcraft map creates the world of Harry Potter in impressive detail. The map is full of recognisable locations from the books and films, but the recreation of Hogwarts school, complete with interior, is the standout location.
\#9 – The Bathhouse (Spirited Away)
The world of Spirited Away has also been captured in Minecraft form, with the bathhouse being the most notable recreation. It has a faithfully recreated interior and extras like working baths and even the little Sootballs from the film can be called out by stepping on a pressure pad. Walking around the world is literally like walking around the movie, and as of April 2014 the creator is still adding interiors to houses and improving the map.
Related: Spirited Away Minecraft
\#8 – City of Adamantis
The City of Adamantis is the brain-child of JamDelaney1, who spent three months building the lavish, richly-detailed palace composed of around 60 million blocks. The level of care that went into creating this is abundantly clear, and the result is something genuinely breathtaking in both scale and aesthetic appeal.
\#7 – Enterprise NCC-1701-D (Star Trek)
There’s pretty much a rule that any classic of science fiction and fantasy has been recreated in Minecraft, and Star Trek is no exception. There’s a whole map full of one to one scale ships from the series, but the Next Generation Enterprise is arguably the most impressive of the bunch; the humongous scale making you really feel like you’re staring up at a galaxy-class starship.
\#6 – Atlas
The statue of Atlas – the Greek god responsible for holding up the Earth – from Craftica is one of the most impressive statues made on Minecraft. With you spawning on top of the landscape the god-sized figure is holding up, at first you explore the landscape before curiosity leads you to jump off the edge and take a look at the wondrous creation you were idly wandering around on top of.
\#5 – The Winter Palace
The Winter Palace is the jewel in the crown of the Imperial City, which the creators describe as the “biggest and most detailed Minecraft city ever.” This level of pride is understandable after obviously putting an unholy ton of time into producing it, and when you take a look at the finely-crafted detail of the Winter Palace, no matter how much you want chastise the creators for being too big-headed, being impressed is unavoidable.
\#4 – King’s Landing (Game of Thrones)
Game of Thrones, as you may have guessed by this point, is well-served by Minecraft recreations. Many are impressive, but the version of King’s Landing is particularly astounding, made as part of Westeroscraft, a project dedicating to recreating the universe from the novel series A Song of Ice and Fire. The Great Sept of Baelor is especially well-captured, but the view of the entire city really conveys the sheer scale of the project.
\#3 – Rapture (BioShock)
The underwater city of Rapture from BioShock has been attempted by many on Minecraft, but the version of it from the builders at HungerCraft is the most well-known, having being used to recreate the iconic introduction from the game. The best thing about the recreation is that the entire thing is underwater, making the construction process all the more difficult and the finished project all the more impressive.
\#2 – Minas Tirith (The Lord of the Rings)
The recreation of the seven-level city from Lord of the Rings is stunning, immediately recognisable and truly grand in scale. With some fancy rendering applied, you almost forget you’re looking at something created in Minecraft. It was built over the course of a year, complete with the iconic White Tree of Gondor and the Citadel occupying the top level and hundreds of buildings with interiors. Just two people built this entire thing.
\#1 – A computer, with RAM
Although it isn’t a terrifyingly detailed recreation of a classic fictional location or a jaw-dropping self-designed palace, the notion of creating a computer inside Minecraft is more brain-melting than mind-blowing. It can be loaded up with up to 16 lines of code, and can perform additions, subtractions and divisions. This redstone driven creation is undeniably impressive, and although the division takes some time (it’s not exactly going to replace your calculator app), it’s still probably the most amazing thing created in Minecraft.