Friday, November 9, 2012

Part 24: Why does it have to be trees?

In the morning, I began my wake-up ritual, an exhilarating frenzy of breaking glass, followed by a headlong sword-waving dash for the horizon.  Today, I was brought up short in my dash when I found myself face to face with a bear.  I went into full panic mode before I realized that bears aren't dangerous to me by daylight - I seem to have internalized Boxter's neuroses during our weeks together.

Two bears, a creeper and a lion.  There are entirely too many scary things, and not enough nice things, in this world.  And by nice things I mean pegasus.
 In relief I turned back toward the shelter.

Why do I never see this coming?

Grabbed this screenshot somehow while scrabbling furiously backwards, fighting lag.
My roommate saw this screenshot and commented "It looks like you fell in a snowbank."  I couldn't explain to her why a creeper explosion isn't green and slimy.

Fortunately, in my mad scramble backwards, I had managed to draw the creeper away from the shelter, so the glass wasn't even cracked.

But there was still that bear to deal with.  It probably scented Boxter, but hadn't yet thought to look for him underground.

A brief standoff ensued.

I won.  That round, anyways.

Unfortunately, my morning progress was soon marred by the depressing sight of trees.  Lots of them.

And three more bears.

I climbed a huge mountain (pretty fun on a horse, actually), and took a look at what lay northwards.  It was not encouraging.


Northeast was looking rather dismal as well.


It wasn't any better farther along (pretty scenery, though).  I went as far as the sea in both directions.

Trees on mountains: the worst.

Shucks.  And dare I say, horsefeathers.  It was great while it lasted, but it looked like this glorious Horse Heaven territory had finally come to an end.  The sensible thing to do, of course, would be to build a home base here and range out over the territory by day, scanning vast amounts of landscape for pegasus.  With a custom-built base to return to every night, I could stay out longer each day.  I could replenish my supplies.  And, I could justifiably say that I was in the north now, since I had encountered snow.

But of course we have already well established that I am not a rational person.  I took one last farewell tour before turning northwards.

Easier to dodge lions in open territory.  That hill in the background is pretty neat.

Found a massive horse party!  No pegasus, but they did have an impending lion problem.

Two horselets!  No wings, though.  On my way back through here, I found the lion bothering a horselet, so I slew it with my mighty arrows.  The lion, that is.

Oh, the view.  That glorious open land.  Pretty impressive, considering this is the old map generator with the 256 height limit.
 Finally it was time to end the fun, and venture northward into the land of trees and bears.  At least there are no jungles in this version of Minecraft.  Can you imagine?  Trees twice as high and four times as broad, with vines and underbrush.  It would be completely impassable.

A pig banquet, but I couldn't risk dismounting to hunt, with bears so close.

It wasn't as bad as I feared, though.  A pretty cool overhang, and some expanses of open ice to race across.

The red flower is a nice touch.

Eventually I came to an all-too familiar sight: land's end. Water to the north.  Time to stop for the night.

Too wide to splash across, for sure.  If only horses fit in boats.

 I found a hole of a cave that didn't look too bad - there were no predators about, so I dismounted to take a look.
This was brave of me.

 Eventually I had ventured deep enough to convince myself that nothing was going to be coming up the cave at me - that hole looked too small for anything to climb up through.

 Keenly aware of the water over my head, and the need to very much resist taking any of the ceiling out, I chased Boxter down and rode him as far as I could into the cave, which wasn't very far, considering that when I'm on horseback, we are the largest creature in Minecraft.  (In ALL of Minecraft.  Why don't the bears show us more respect?)

I think Boxter's head qualifies as "in the cave", while my own was probably sticking out.

It took some doing, though, for me to get Boxter to stay there.  Every time I dismounted and fumbled for a haystack (which keeps him stuck happily in place until the next time I ride him, on purpose or not), Boxter would immediately spring from the hole as if it were filled with bears.  And every time, I'd have to chase him down, reenter the hole, show him that there were no bears, and then go for the haystack again.


This time it took two haystacks, because the first block of the shelter I was trying to build was the block directly over Boxter's head - and, predictably, I ended up on his back.

Now PLEASE will you stay put?

But eventually I had him settled, and began laying a luxurious glass roof as night began to fall.  You can see by the fact that there are in-progress screenshots that I was feeling, for once, relatively under control.

I don't care.  Glass makes me happy.  It is all of civilization that I have out here.

The bottom of the cave turned out to be accessible after all, so I was very lucky that it was merely a dead end down there.  I did find a block of iron, though, which I used with the other iron in my pocket to make some metal socks.


I was mining in the middle of the night when suddenly I heard a gunshot.  Yes, a gunshot.  In Minecraft.  I have no idea.  My first instinctual move was to check to see if Boxter was all right (and nothing to do with fleeing the dark and scary mine I was in).  He was all right, and nothing was amis, except for a couple of ducks on the glass ceiling.  I still don't know what that gunshot sound was... maybe the game had a bit of lag and saved up a bunch of footstep and watersplash sounds, and played them all at once?  Or had the bears armed themselves?

That scary hulk is actually Boxter facing the wall, and not some tall slavering beast that has replaced him, as heralded by the signal of the gunshot.  Maybe I need to get some sleep.

The coming of dawn revealed the slightly unsettling view of the undersides of three spiders on the roof.  There are disadvantages to glass ceilings.

Skrrrrrrrrr I've never heard a spider make a sound in real life, but they sure do in the game.  Maybe the spider sounds scale in pitch with the size of the spider, and the real-life ones make a terrible menacing racket but all in ultrasound.

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