What Parents Need to Know About Minecraft: Parents Guide to Safety

Minecraft is the video game that has sold the most copies of any other game ever. Over a decade after it was made available to the public, it remains one of the most popular games, especially among younger players. On the other hand, many parents have limited or nonexistent awareness of what the game entails, its potential risks, and the time they should allow their children to play it. There are even parents who wonder whether or not Minecraft is suitable for children.

The ability that Minecraft has to teach and enhance the learning growth of youngsters is something that FunTech is well aware of. We have previously written a blog post discussing how Minecraft might help a youngster prepare for a future job and identified eleven reasons why it has educational value.

We also have summer camps specifically designed to educate youngsters on how to code using the Minecraft video game (you can find all of the camp dates here).

Despite this, we acknowledge that Minecraft may be a challenging topic to discuss due to the worries over the amount of time spent in front of a screen and on the internet. In light of this, it was necessary to compile this guide, which explains the information parents need about Minecraft.

Read More: Is Minecraft Safe for Kids: What Every Parent Needs to Know in 2024

Minecraft parent’s guide (is Minecraft good for kids)

With millions of players, spin-off games, and even an annual conference, Minecraft is widely considered one of the most influential games ever. It was developed by Mojang in 2011, and it has since enjoyed widespread popularity. However, in a world where video games are integral to daily life, how can you ensure your kid is secure when playing Minecraft?

This comprehensive guide will provide you with all the information you want on the video game, allowing you to have the assurance that you are aware of everything your kid is doing online, that they are secure, and that they are having fun, whether they are playing it by themselves or with their friends online.

What is Minecraft about?

Most video games have some storyline or even a goal, such as rescuing a princess in Mario, battling the “bad guys,” or even managing a farm in more serene games, such as Stardew Valley. However, Minecraft is one of a kind since it does not have a storyline.

Instead of providing the player with any cue, such as “go to this location” or “find this,” the game does not give directions. Instead, it lets you decide what to do in its environment.

Minecraft, referred to as a “sandbox game,” gives the user unlimited opportunity to express their creative side. In Minecraft, the world is made up of 1×1 3D bricks. These blocks include grass blocks, which are used to create the ground; trunk pieces, which are stacked to create trees; and even water blocks, which flow into rivers and seas.

Breaking and picking up these blocks allows the player to reposition them anywhere in the environment to construct homes, castles, and other constructions. These blocks may be broken and picked up by the player. This is where the term “mining” originates, which includes the laborious mining process for resources like coal, gold, and iron.

What do kids do in Minecraft?

Minecraft is a game that does not have a plot or a purpose. The children are left to their own devices as much as possible. There are two options available: either you may construct the enormous tower you can, or you can make a tiny homestead where you can cultivate and trade with villagers, who are computer-controlled individuals who populate the area.

Your character has a primary health meter that may take damage by falling, being assaulted by monsters produced at random, or even forgetting to eat. The game is a survival experience; your character has this health bar.

You maintain your health bar by being aware of your surroundings and consuming food (including apples from trees, veggies you’ve grown from seeds, meals you have created from wheat, or even meat from the animals you come across in the environment).

Players must often choose between creative and survival options while playing a game. Some children disregard the game’s survival aspects (which can be managed via the game settings, such as turning off enemies and the health meter) and instead play the game for the sole purpose of constructing things.

You may have seen pictures of enormous buildings built using the game on the internet. These constructions might be recreations of well-known locations, imaginary settings, or designs developed solely based on the builder’s imagination.

On the other hand, some children concentrate on the aspects of the game that involve survival. This is the path that the majority of players choose when they first begin the game. They use the resources they find in the region they are placed in to construct a makeshift shelter before the first night falls.

For those just starting with Minecraft, the official website for the game has helpful “How To” instructions that can be found on the website.

What age is appropriate for Minecraft?

Minecraft is a game commonly suggested for children aged eight and older since it is not excessively violent and is not even that tough to learn. In fact, for many youngsters, it was one of their first experiences playing video games online.

You do not need to provide evidence of your age when creating an account; nevertheless, you will be asked for your birthdate when creating an account. If the game determines that you are under 13 years old, some features, such as the ability to make purchases inside the game, will be disabled.

On the other hand, it is relatively simple for a youngster to become aware of these limitations and decide to input a birth year that gives them complete access to all of the functions.

You can manage various parameters to create a pleasant experience for your kid. These options include changing the difficulty level to prevent creatures from producing in the environment and even the ability to turn off the health bar that stops you from dying.

Is Minecraft safe for kids?

The idea of letting your kid play video games without supervision is one that many parents are concerned about, particularly if they are not acquainted with the software in question. Given that the game ratings on the boxes do not provide any precise information regarding the level of violence in the game, this is acceptable.

However, there is a deliberate effort to make Minecraft suitable for children, both in terms of its visual design and gameplay. Even the monsters are more adorable than they are frightening.

The fighting you engage in inside the game is relatively straightforward, with damage being deducted from your health bar whenever you are struck by a monster or their weapon (and vice versa if you assault a creature). If you decide to engage in combat with the beast, hearts will appear around it to indicate that damage is being received, rather than any apparent injuries or blood.

One may argue that the only genuinely “scary” aspect of the game is the nighttime and the audio of creatures that are not visible to the player (with zombies making the customary groans and skeletons rattling), but this is something that can be easily remedied by adjusting the settings to reduce the volume of the monsters’ audio.

Ultimately, every kid has unique boundaries and experiences various things that they find challenging or frightening. You still know your kid’s limits better than anyone else, and you should be able to estimate whether your child would find Minecraft too terrifying or brutal. Even though Minecraft is not regarded as scary or particularly violent, you still know your child’s limits.

If you are still hesitant, you may play Minecraft for yourself or be there with your kid when they first begin the game to see how they respond.

Does Minecraft cost anything?

Purchase is required to play Minecraft, just as it is with most other video games. It is possible to play Minecraft on various platforms, including your computer, gaming consoles, mobile devices, tablets, and even your Amazon Fire TV. This is one of the many reasons Minecraft is such a popular game.

You will be allowed to choose the platform on which you would like to play Minecraft. Once you have selected, you will be sent to the particular purchase page for the applicable version of Minecraft.

The price of Minecraft is determined by the platform on which it is purchased, with specific platforms having a higher price than others and some platforms having more than one version of Minecraft available for purchase.

In most versions, the core game is essentially the same; however, key components are altered depending on the system.

Are there any additional costs to Minecraft?

After you have purchased Minecraft, you can play the game without paying any further fees or hidden expenses, such as membership fees or secret prices. With that being said, there are a few more features that may be bought separately.

  • Texture and skin packs: Texture packs are purchased “packs” that alter the appearance of your Minecraft blocks. These packs change the physical textures of the world, making them brighter, darker, or even other colors. Texture packs may be purchased or downloaded. There are hundreds of texture packs accessible on the internet, some of which may be downloaded for free on platforms such as personal computers. In contrast, others can be purchased directly from Minecraft users. The sole difference between skin packs and other packs is that they alter the look of your character.
  • Minecraft Realms: The Minecraft Realms membership is an online subscription for Minecraft that allows you to run your gaming servers for multiplayer players. Realms for Minecraft enables numerous people to participate in the same game regardless of where they are located in the world, in contrast to the standard version of Minecraft, which only allows for one person per world. This means that you have entire control over these worlds, which will enable you to alter the level of difficulty and the appearance and atmosphere of the game.
  • Online Multiplayer: Individuals who have a subscription to the online service can only participate in online multiplayer for specific consoles, such as the Nintendo Switch. Certain versions of Minecraft do not adhere to this rule.

Is Minecraft violent?

Violence in video games is a frequent source of concern for parents. Although it has not been shown that video games are directly responsible for violent acts in real life, there are still some aspects that you may be concerned about regarding what your kid sees and participates in when playing video games.

It is possible for some video games, such as Doom and other famous shoot-em-ups, to include a significant amount of blood and violence, which may be unpleasant for children of a particular age.

However, although Minecraft has some somewhat violent features, the game’s look is incredibly lighthearted and comical. The monsters that arise may be easily defeated with swords, bows, and arrows. Once they are “killed,” they vanish in a cloud of smoke, and the only indications that they have been harmed are the red hearts that appear on their bodies when they are struck.

In Minecraft, the violence is entirely discretionary and can be simply altered via the settings. The difficulty level determines the number of monsters generated into the world if any whatsoever is generated at all.

You need to change the difficulty setting to “Peaceful” if you do not want monsters or foes to emerge in your game.

Nevertheless, even without monsters, there are still ways to become a victim of the game. It is possible to murder non-playable characters like villagers and merchants by swinging swords at them, although there is no reward. Additionally, sheep and chickens may be assaulted for their flesh, wool, and feathers, which are essential for making equipment (although sheers can be created to collect wool later on).

However, you are not required to kill anything in the game since meat is not a resource that is needed to restore health. There are a lot of other meals, such as carrots, bread, and potatoes that your character may prepare and consume instead of meat.

Can Minecraft make you smarter?

The video game Minecraft is often praised for its educational value, but is this claim genuinely accurate? Can playing Minecraft make you smarter?

As a result of the game’s wide variety of features, such as survival and creative modes, you can modify the experience of playing your game to be more focused on creative problem-solving.

The following is a condensed version of the comments that we made in a previous blog post dealing with the educational benefits of Minecraft:

  • Children may acquire skills for problem-solving with its assistance.
  • Reading and writing abilities may be improved with its help.
  • A curious mind is supported by it.
  • Math problems are more accessible to solve for children.
  • It educates children on how to handle resources properly.
  • In this way, children learn the value of working together.
  • The self-assurance of a youngster may be boosted as a result.
  • A child’s education in history may benefit from this.
  • The child’s creative abilities and imagination may be enhanced as a result.
  • For a youngster, it might help them learn how to code.
  • It provides abilities that will be useful in the future.

One of the many beautiful aspects of Minecraft is that, in the years since its initial release, it has evolved into a game that is far more complicated than just stacking blocks.

A variety of pistons and rail tracks can be powered by the substance known as “Redstone,” which enables the construction of entirely automated circuits (you may have read stories about people developing fully functional hard drives inside their Minecraft servers).

Is there online chat in Minecraft?

Even though a single person often plays the first Minecraft game, it does support multiplayer. This may be local (in the sense of playing alongside a nearby computer or console) or far-reaching (in the mind that players from all over the globe can play concurrently).

When your kid joins a multiplayer server in Minecraft, a notice will appear on the screen informing them that they may be exposed to open chatrooms that have not been rated (and thus include language or material appropriate for all ages). The sole way for players to speak with one another inside Minecraft is via text chats. However, other programs like Skype or Discord may enable your youngster to have audible conversations with their pals.

You should not be worried about your kid’s safety if they are playing a solo game since the only method for someone to communicate with your child via Minecraft is to join a server that supports multiplayer.

Suppose you are still unclear about whether or not you should let your kid play on multiplayer servers. In that case, you can check out the helpful advice for online safety while playing Minecraft that is available on the official Minecraft website.

How long should your child play Minecraft for?

Even while spending time online or playing games isn’t inherently a negative thing, parents should be mindful of how much time their kid is spending online in comparison to the amount of time they spend outdoors or even engaged in activities that do not involve a screen (such reading a book, playing a board game, or arguing with their siblings).

Minecraft is a game that is quite captivating, and it is straightforward to get engrossed in it for a significant amount of time at a time. When you are having a good time, time seems to fly by, and before you know it, you realize that you have spent the previous four hours creating the ideal Minecraft block home without having any intention of doing so.

Children under 12 years old should be limited to no more than two hours of screen time each day, according to the recommendations of various specialists regarding the amount of time children should spend.

However, in today’s digital world, this is easier to say than it is to do, and it may be difficult for your kid to refrain from engaging in something that their peers also spend all of their time doing. In such a scenario, you can likely choose the amount of time spent with your kid.

Too much of anything is harmful. Therefore, it is essential to track how much time your kid spends on video games each day compared to the amount of time they spend on other activities. Ensure that they are engaging in a sufficient amount of activities that do not include using a screen.

For example, you might take them out for walks during their free time, or you could encourage them to participate in extracurricular activities inside and outside school. Some examples of these activities are football, dancing, or more creative hobbies such as painting or music courses.

What can you build in Minecraft?

The options are essentially unlimited regarding the possibilities of what may be constructed in Minecraft. Although it may seem that the only thing that can be built with 1×1 cubes is a square home, it is worth noting that both adults and children have successfully constructed highly intricate constructions and sometimes even wholly functional.

Additionally, whole websites are devoted to providing blueprints and photographs of other people’s Minecraft creations that are reasonably easy to construct. You may use these websites if you are still at a loss for ideas about what to create.

For example, if you want to create a vehicle to place in your garage, a realistic-looking old oak tree to finish off your yard, or even a block-form recreation of your favorite character, you can do all these things.

Many Sites provide users access to hundreds of free blueprints, ranging from sculptures and buildings to characters and even machinery in operation.

What parents should know about Minecraft?

Although Minecraft is a game that is typically safe for children, they might be exposed to unacceptable language and material. When children can engage with other players from around the globe in multiplayer modes, this might be a significant worry.

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