At this point in time, it pretty much feels like you can play Minecaft everywhere. Second only to Doom, which is probably playable on a Kindle at this point, Minecraft has effectively permeated through every facet of the multimedia world. It’s playable on Netflix, teachers use it in schools, and there’s also that movie which has been in development for what feels like forever.
Where did it all start though? Initially, Minecraft launched exclusively on PC, and was developed in Java. The game’s original developer launched the game in 2009, publishing it on the TIGSource forums. Minecraft was improved and developed based on the feedback from forum posters, and before long the Alpha version of the game was released.
A few years later, Minecraft was purchased by Microsoft, a major milestone in its journey to becoming the dominant property that it is today. With numerous editions available, it is now probably more difficult to find where Minecraft hasn’t been released. In case you were wondering though, here’s where you can play Minecraft in 2021. In order to make this list a little more digestible, I’m going to break it down into the different ways you can play it.
So, where can you play Minecraft in 2021?
Let’s start where it all began? There are a few different ways you can play Minecraft on PC. The original version, built in Java, is still available and supported by Microsoft. You can access this version by visiting Mojang’s site directly. Players will need to have a Microsoft account in order to access the game’s multiplayer though. Microsoft has stated its intention to continue supporting the Java edition in the future, although it’s not clear how long that support may last.
Next up there’s Minecraft on Microsoft’s store. Microsoft’s flagship version of Minecraft is known as the Bedrock Edition. Microsoft’s edition is simpler than the Java edition, running far smoother for those on lower end PCs. However, the Bedrock Edition lacks the mod support which is popular amongst long standing players of the game. However, Bedrock has one major feature which Java does not, ray-tracing support.
Outside of those editions, Minecraft is accessible in two other ways. The Bedrock Edition can be downloaded through Microsoft’s Game Pass service. Players can also stream the game using xCloud streaming. PC gamers have the best of both worlds, with a choice between both modded Minecraft and the Windows-focused version which features ray-tracing support.
Minecraft is currently available on every major console. PlayStation 4 players can purchase the game through the online store, or by popping into a local retailer and grabbing a physical copy. The PS4 edition is the same Bedrock Edition which can be found on PC and Xbox. The PS4 edition features the latest updates, including part two of the Caves and Cliffs update which was recently released. Microsoft has stated its intent to continue supporting the game, but there are no details on what the extent of that support might be. At the time of writing, there are also no specific details around a potential PS5 release. However the game is playable on the console.
It should come as no surprise that Minecraft is available across Microsoft’s Xbox platform. The game is available on Xbox One, Xbox One X, and Xbox Series S | X. Similar to the PlayStation 5, there is no version of Minecraft which has been optimised for the latest consoles yet. However, it is only a matter of time before Microsoft adapts the game, considering Minecraft is one of its biggest products. Minecraft on console is also available to Xbox Game Pass subscribers across all consoles.
Minecraft is also available on Nintendo Switch. 4J Studios developed the port in cooperation with Mojang Studios. In its current state, the game is inline with the 1.0.17 update, and features legacy console features including minigames. However, recent major updates like the Nether Update and Caves & Cliffs updates are absent.
Minecraft is also available in your pocket. Whether you have an Android or an iPhone, you can play the game in your pocket. Mobile editions are stripped down compared to console and PC counterparts. Don’t expect an experience that is on parity with the editions.However, if you want to play Minecraft while on the go, the mobile versions offer plenty of key features from the series. Minecraft is also available across a number of Android and iOS devices such as tablets. Performance will vary however, depending on the performance of your specific device.
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Featured Image Credit: Microsoft