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Old 15-01-2013, 23:20
Nessun Dorma
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HI all

When it comes to computer games, I am a bit naive and actually less than a novice. Nessun11 had been playing Minecraft trial version for some weeks, when at Christmas, after talking to a few parents, I bought him the full version to play. I was advised, sensibly so in my view, to only allow single player gaming, as I think eleven is a bit young to be entering in to the social side of things on-line and he needs to be more aware of potential risks.

But now, he is talking about joining others on-line and hooking up with other "servers," as well as downloading "mods" and such things. As I know very little about this and I want to make sure he stays safe and that my computers stay safe, I was hoping to get some "advice for dummies," so to speak, from you chaps.

For example, what is a "server?" The only servers I know of, are the type that sit in a cupboard in my office and supports all the other computers. Other mysteries I need clearing up is "mapping," "multiple players," etc. Also what are the risks involved in joining other "servers" and the like. Can anyone recommend "safe" download sites?

One of the other things he seems to be having difficulty with is transferring what he has done when using the desktop to when he uses the laptop.

Any and all help will be gratefully appreciated.

Thank you.
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Old 16-01-2013, 12:34
Ladyxxmacbeth
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My son is 9 and has MInecraft on his Xbox so I cannot comment on the PC version but I allow him to play with his friends and only his friends. There are a couple of people he knows at school that play and he goes into their games and they create things.
I would say that at the age of eleven as long as you are aware of who he is chatting to and have a pretty close relationship where if anything goes wrong or he is worried he can come to you then I think you should let him explore a little bit.
The world online especially on the xbox can be a daunting, and sometimes very rude place to be and as long as he is aware of the dangers of the intenet, ie not giving out personal details sending pictures or money and realising that people are not always who they say they are then he should be safe.
No website is 100% safe but I think the advatages of allowing your children to explore the internet far outways the dangers.
He sounds sensible and I'd much rather my son was on minecraft than Call of DUty. Explain to him your fears as a parent and trust him to make good decisions.
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Old 16-01-2013, 12:44
mred2000
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...and realising that people are not always who they say they are...
Ladyxxmacbeth is actually a burly brick-layer called Steve, he had us all fooled! See how easy it is?

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Old 16-01-2013, 14:14
cat666
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For example, what is a "server?" The only servers I know of, are the type that sit in a cupboard in my office and supports all the other computers. Other mysteries I need clearing up is "mapping," "multiple players," etc. Also what are the risks involved in joining other "servers" and the like. Can anyone recommend "safe" download sites?

One of the other things he seems to be having difficulty with is transferring what he has done when using the desktop to when he uses the laptop.

Any and all help will be gratefully appreciated.

Thank you.
A server in this sense is probably refering a realm of users. So you select a server to play on, and can usually only interact with others on your server. Some games have actual servers where all players go to play, others require 1 player to be the server and have others connect to him.

Mapping is pretty generic term. I've not played Minecraft but it usually refers to creating maps for others to play on. As this seems to be the point of Minecraft it makes sense.

Multiple players speaks for itself, you play online either against, or in co-operation with other real life players.

The final question about transfering Minecraft from machine to machine isn't something I can help with as I am not aware of how it works. If it requires files saved to your machine as opposed to running from a browser then there will a tranfering issue.

As for the safety of online gaming, you really don't have much to worry about from a security point of view. Even if you become the server, the people connected are only able to connect to play the game via what is known as a port. As long as you have a Firewall program installed, most of the other ports will be shut off. Obviously make sure anything you download comes from trusted sources. If you download a program claiming to help you hack Minecraft then the chances are it is a virus and will hack you. Just be sensible.

The only thing to watch out for are other players being idiots. Swearing and abuse are common in online games, where people feel they have a sense of anomnity. I'm not sure on Minecrafts multiplayer, but I doubt it will be voice chat enabled so it will noly be text you have to watch out for. There might be a way to disable it.
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Old 16-01-2013, 14:33
boxx
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I think as long as the computer acting as the server is switched on the world will be persistent, as in you can log your character in from anywhere and carry on. Some of the projects players undertake are pretty epic.
You're right to be concerned but maybe you can agree to supervise a couple of sessions before you decide.
Mods can be anything from a slight graphic tweak to an entire game change, this for example is really impressive! The only risks you have with mods is getting them from direct download sites (scan everything) and possibly causing crashes ingame but he sounds like he knows what he's doing

ETA: I'm sure you'll get some good recommenations for download sites.
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Old 16-01-2013, 15:08
flagpole
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i do play minecraft.

downloading mods is nothing to worry about. minecraft is pretty open, other programmers can develop mod(ification)s that change the way the game works. the scope is vast some do things like add other characters, some completely change the game.

the on line play in minecraft is a bit different to most games. normally if you play a game on line you connect to the game developer's server, the virtual world exists on their computers and you log in to it. with minecraft the developers make the server software freely available. so anyone can set up a server. i could set one up and people could log in to play in my world....

....the problems with playing on line are the same as anything online, a lot of people are dicks. and you can talk to each other in the game.

i don't really have a feel for the maturity of an 11 year old. but there is every chance some one will call him a ****, it depends if you think he can handle that. if not there are special family friendly minecraft servers. normal online rules apply i guess like not giving out your real name.

on the technical side of things. saves are stored in:

C:\Users\-his windows user name-\AppData\Roaming\.minecraft\saves and the files in there can be copied from one computer to another.

punchwood.com is a good family friendly forum for asking questions about minecraft that would be appropriate for him or you.
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Old 16-01-2013, 21:59
Nessun Dorma
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A server in this sense is probably refering a realm of users. So you select a server to play on, and can usually only interact with others on your server. Some games have actual servers where all players go to play, others require 1 player to be the server and have others connect to him.
So, does this mean that the computer Nessun11 will be using will actually be connected to that server? Does that mean that the security of our computer is vulnerable?

Mapping is pretty generic term. I've not played Minecraft but it usually refers to creating maps for others to play on. As this seems to be the point of Minecraft it makes sense.

Multiple players speaks for itself, you play online either against, or in co-operation with other real life players.
Is it possible to restrict who he plays with?

The final question about transfering Minecraft from machine to machine isn't something I can help with as I am not aware of how it works. If it requires files saved to your machine as opposed to running from a browser then there will a tranfering issue.
Is there anyone else who can answer this question for me. He is quite disappointed that has build up quite a bit, but can't seem to use it.

As for the safety of online gaming, you really don't have much to worry about from a security point of view. Even if you become the server, the people connected are only able to connect to play the game via what is known as a port. As long as you have a Firewall program installed, most of the other ports will be shut off. Obviously make sure anything you download comes from trusted sources. If you download a program claiming to help you hack Minecraft then the chances are it is a virus and will hack you. Just be sensible.

Aah....I think this probably answers my question above, thanks.

The only thing to watch out for are other players being idiots. Swearing and abuse are common in online games, where people feel they have a sense of anomnity. I'm not sure on Minecrafts multiplayer, but I doubt it will be voice chat enabled so it will noly be text you have to watch out for. There might be a way to disable it.
I have not given him a headset yet, so this is a bit of a moot point. My next challenge is going to X-Box live.

Thank you Cat for your helpful and detailed contribution.
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Old 16-01-2013, 22:03
Nessun Dorma
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I think as long as the computer acting as the server is switched on the world will be persistent, as in you can log your character in from anywhere and carry on. Some of the projects players undertake are pretty epic.
I know, I have seen some remarkable achievements in this world. I am allowing this particular game, as it seems to support and develop a creative and innovative side to its players.

You're right to be concerned but maybe you can agree to supervise a couple of sessions before you decide.
Mods can be anything from a slight graphic tweak to an entire game change, this for example is really impressive! The only risks you have with mods is getting them from direct download sites (scan everything) and possibly causing crashes ingame but he sounds like he knows what he's doing

ETA: I'm sure you'll get some good recommenations for download sites.
The particular mod he wants to add, is Tekkit, but we had problems with downloading it last night, it kept crashing the game; any advice?
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Old 16-01-2013, 22:05
Nessun Dorma
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My son is 9 and has MInecraft on his Xbox so I cannot comment on the PC version but I allow him to play with his friends and only his friends. There are a couple of people he knows at school that play and he goes into their games and they create things.
I would say that at the age of eleven as long as you are aware of who he is chatting to and have a pretty close relationship where if anything goes wrong or he is worried he can come to you then I think you should let him explore a little bit.
The world online especially on the xbox can be a daunting, and sometimes very rude place to be and as long as he is aware of the dangers of the intenet, ie not giving out personal details sending pictures or money and realising that people are not always who they say they are then he should be safe.
No website is 100% safe but I think the advatages of allowing your children to explore the internet far outways the dangers.
He sounds sensible and I'd much rather my son was on minecraft than Call of DUty. Explain to him your fears as a parent and trust him to make good decisions.
We do have chats about what is and what isn't suitable and the extremes are quite easy to explain, but its the more marginal issues he has difficulty with. He is eleven, so he is struggling with growing up too fast in world that wants him to stay a child.
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Old 16-01-2013, 22:55
flagpole
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Well serves me right.
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Old 16-01-2013, 23:49
Nessun Dorma
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i do play minecraft.

downloading mods is nothing to worry about. minecraft is pretty open, other programmers can develop mod(ification)s that change the way the game works. the scope is vast some do things like add other characters, some completely change the game.

the on line play in minecraft is a bit different to most games. normally if you play a game on line you connect to the game developer's server, the virtual world exists on their computers and you log in to it. with minecraft the developers make the server software freely available. so anyone can set up a server. i could set one up and people could log in to play in my world....

....the problems with playing on line are the same as anything online, a lot of people are dicks. and you can talk to each other in the game.

i don't really have a feel for the maturity of an 11 year old. but there is every chance some one will call him a ****, it depends if you think he can handle that. if not there are special family friendly minecraft servers. normal online rules apply i guess like not giving out your real name.

on the technical side of things. saves are stored in:

C:\Users\-his windows user name-\AppData\Roaming\.minecraft\saves and the files in there can be copied from one computer to another.

punchwood.com is a good family friendly forum for asking questions about minecraft that would be appropriate for him or you.
Sorry Flagpole, I completely missed your contribution. Do you mind if I wait until tomorrow to respond.
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Old 16-01-2013, 23:59
Glowbot
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Downloading mods at 11? Good luck with that one! I'm 29 years old and I am a nerd and I can't do it.

I've only been able to change the texture pack and add a map so far, then I updated and it doesn't work anymore.

One thing you need to know with downloading the mods, if everything breaks (which it will) you just take out your save game world, delete the minecraft folder and redownload it from the site.

I wanted to download tekkit too, it looks amazing. The thing is I think, it is only designed to work with older versions of mine craft, so you have to rollback. Also if you notice, every time you want to add Tekkit you require another mod to be added first, then to make that mod you need another one and soforth.

IMO it's too complicated for an 11 year old anyway. For those who don't know, Tekkit adds machines and some other materials to the game, all good but you no longer have to mine, which is the fun part. Yogscast do a hilarious series of YouTube vids on it.
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Old 17-01-2013, 02:43
He4rt
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My 9 year old also plays Minecraft on the xbox. I often play in local games with him but iv'e asked him to keep games private as he uses my tag and often players from my fireds list will join him thinking its me.

I wouldn't mind at all if he was to join a party with people he knew but as i know what the community on xbox live can be like i won't let him join random games yet.

He's very impressive on Mincraft and sometimes spends over 3 days on some of his 'projects' that in honesty look really good. The other day he showed me a huge statue of a spider he had made over a few days which was very creative of him.
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Old 17-01-2013, 10:56
cat666
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So, does this mean that the computer Nessun11 will be using will actually be connected to that server? Does that mean that the security of our computer is vulnerable?.
I'm not sure how Minecraft's multiplayer works, but any multiplayer game requires a connection to a server somewhere. Sometimes it's a specific server owned/leased by the games owner, other times a player will act as a server for other players. If you host the game, your the server, but as long as you have a firewall software installed it is perfectly safe.

Is it possible to restrict who he plays with?
That would be a Minecraft specific question, which I can't answer. Most games offer a block feature for users who are idiots, but you have to see them be an idiot first.

I have not given him a headset yet, so this is a bit of a moot point. My next challenge is going to X-Box live.
For an 11yr old, my opinion is a headset is a big no. Text is one thing, but voice really rams home impact of words. Xbox live is also riddled with idiots and a lot of what is said on there you wouldn't want a 16yr old hearing!
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Old 17-01-2013, 12:46
boxx
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I know, I have seen some remarkable achievements in this world. I am allowing this particular game, as it seems to support and develop a creative and innovative side to its players.
Indeed. As a learning tool, Minecraft is amazing. I've never played the game, but I'm one of those who looks on in awe when I read things like this(part 2 here if you're interested) and see some of the creations online. It makes me think that some of the risks present in other public games won't show up as much in MC. More an air of intense concentration than 'smack talking bout yo mum' That said, like flagpole stated, if someone wants to be offensive online, there's not much in place to stop them, chat filters notwithstanding. Teach him to ignore rather than bite and he'll be fine

The particular mod he wants to add, is Tekkit, but we had problems with downloading it last night, it kept crashing the game; any advice?
Not on modding MC in particular. A common one in other games is dropping the folder in the wrong place ie in with the data folder rather than in the data folder, Minecraft also seems to have a lot of 'versions'. A mod may become out of date when the game is updated and the author may need to update it before it works again. If you have multiple mods, load order can become an issue, causing conflicts. This must sound complicated, honestly the best way to go about mods is get a few good guides (added some below) make a copy of your game folder (for when you break something) familiarise yourself with the folders in the install, and get stuck in. Start off with one or two and anytime you add something or make a change, TEST! The basics are easy to learn (really!) and then it'll start to make sense.

I'm sure he's got a Steam account and the Minecraft group is really good

http://steamcommunity.com/groups/MinecraftCommunity

Absolute beginners guide to modding MC

http://www.minecraftforum.net/topic/...beginner-9311/

Tips and tricks

http://www.minecraftforum.net/topic/...ps-and-tricks/

Have fun
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Old 18-01-2013, 00:18
Nessun Dorma
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i do play minecraft.

downloading mods is nothing to worry about. minecraft is pretty open, other programmers can develop mod(ification)s that change the way the game works. the scope is vast some do things like add other characters, some completely change the game.

the on line play in minecraft is a bit different to most games. normally if you play a game on line you connect to the game developer's server, the virtual world exists on their computers and you log in to it. with minecraft the developers make the server software freely available. so anyone can set up a server. i could set one up and people could log in to play in my world....

....the problems with playing on line are the same as anything online, a lot of people are dicks. and you can talk to each other in the game.

i don't really have a feel for the maturity of an 11 year old. but there is every chance some one will call him a ****, it depends if you think he can handle that. if not there are special family friendly minecraft servers. normal online rules apply i guess like not giving out your real name.

on the technical side of things. saves are stored in:

C:\Users\-his windows user name-\AppData\Roaming\.minecraft\saves and the files in there can be copied from one computer to another.

punchwood.com is a good family friendly forum for asking questions about minecraft that would be appropriate for him or you.
Thanks Flagpole, how do I find what his windows user name is? It was set up some time ago and I think it wasn't quite his actual name.

In terms of security, do I have anything to worry about when he hooks up to other's servers?

Have you any advice on downloading Tekkit, as we seem to be having issues?

Thank you for your patience in my response.
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Old 18-01-2013, 09:21
flagpole
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Thanks Flagpole, how do I find what his windows user name is? It was set up some time ago and I think it wasn't quite his actual name.

In terms of security, do I have anything to worry about when he hooks up to other's servers?

Have you any advice on downloading Tekkit, as we seem to be having issues?

Thank you for your patience in my response.
when you are connected to this website your computer is connected as a client to the digital spy server. playing an online game is not inherently more dangerous than that. minecraft uses java, so you need to make sure that is up to date.

but there is no specific danger.

your kid probably knows how to get to C:\Users\-his windows user name-\AppData\Roaming\.minecraft\saves

but id you get as far as C:\Users\ there is a list of user names. to open app data you will have to enable viewing of hidden files.

tekkit is like a meta mod, it's a collection of popular mods all strung together. you don't actually have to do much to use it because it comes with it's own launcher. just make sure minecraft is up to date.
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Old 19-01-2013, 11:14
Nessun Dorma
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when you are connected to this website your computer is connected as a client to the digital spy server. playing an online game is not inherently more dangerous than that. minecraft uses java, so you need to make sure that is up to date.

but there is no specific danger.

your kid probably knows how to get to C:\Users\-his windows user name-\AppData\Roaming\.minecraft\saves
He is not that computer savvy, I'm afraid.

but id you get as far as C:\Users\ there is a list of user names. to open app data you will have to enable viewing of hidden files.

tekkit is like a meta mod, it's a collection of popular mods all strung together. you don't actually have to do much to use it because it comes with it's own launcher. just make sure minecraft is up to date.
If you don't mind, I'll make sure Minecraft is up to date and re-try and get back to you.

Thanks.

P.S. I really am this useless when it comes to techie things.
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Old 02-02-2013, 17:32
Glowbot
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Not sure if you are still having problems, but

http://www.technicpack.net/

is working for me and it's VERY simple.

It gives you a bunch of the best mods, (redstone, Industrial Craft, notenough items, rei'smap) and it doesn't crash you!
you can also switch from Voltz (more reality based electrical) and tekkit (redstone/railcraft) and Hack/Mine!

the only thing you need, is the textures.
I can advise if you want.
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