Fans of AR games like Pokemon Go have a new AR game entering beta to try out called Minecraft Earth. Microsoft began to talk up Minecraft Earth in May, and for those who liked what Microsoft was cooking up, the beta for the game is now available. The beta is closed, so only a limited number of participants can get in on the action.
The closed beta registration page is here, and to be able to play, you need a smartphone that runs at least Android 7 or iOS 10. You also need a Microsoft or Xbox Live account, and an app store log-in. Microsoft says you'll need to answer a few questions to participate and be at least 18-years-old. Reports indicate that Microsoft plans for the closed beta to be a huge endeavor with hundreds of thousands of players allowed to participate.
You can bet there will be a lot of parents who register for the beta so their kids can check it out. Minecraft traditionally skews towards a younger crowd, so the game is very focused on safety. Microsoft has already announced that it will have a full team of moderators who will work 24/7 to ensure that the environment is safe to play in. iOS users will be able to create their build projects in the game, and the game leverages ARKit's People Occlusion to show the builder directly inside their life-size builds.
Minecraft Earth is free to play, and Microsoft promises that there will be lots to do. Gameplay includes:
- Collect blocks and rare items from Tappables.
- Experience the world of Minecraft in the real world with augmented reality at Adventures.
- Use Build Plates to create your latest masterpiece on a tabletop.
- Experience your builds in life-size AR.