It's been a busy week for "Minecraft" fans, with new "Minecraft" Xbox 360 Update 9 details emerging, new bug fixes for "Minecraft Pocket Edition," and now a new "Minecraft" 1.5 Redstone Update preview snapshot for PC gamers.
While development of "Minecraft" is handled by handled by a different studio on each platform, this week was apparently a perfect storm of development and bug correction for the ultra-popular sandbox title. Following minor updates to the Xbox 360 and mobile versions of "Minecraft," PC gamers have been treated to a new "Minecraft" 1.5 Redstone Update preview snapshot complete with new bug fixes and lighting engine optimizations. A title update was also released for the "Minecraft" Xbox 360 late last month; however, this week's "Minecraft" snapshot is the first game update to include more than bug fixes in several weeks.
(Update: As some Redditors have noted, the latest snapshot appears to have introduced a rather hilarious new bug. Many players have noticed that, when attempting to place regular minecarts, pig-spawning minecarts (which aren't typically available in the Survival Mode) are appearing instead. While it's leading to some rather comical situations, we suspect that a "Minecraft" snapshot 13w06b is likely on the way to fix the issue.)
Much like last week's preview snapshot, "Minecraft" snapshot 13w016a is primarily a new batch of bug fixes to be included in the "Minecraft" 1.5 Redstone Update; however, Mojang dev Nathan "Dinnerbone" Adams did include a few lighting engine tweaks for good measure. Unfortunately, there weren't any new blocks included in this week's snapshot, but "Minecraft" players still have access to the Dropper and Hopper minecarts introduced with previous snapshots.
In addition to the lighting engine tweaks, "Minecraft" snapshot 13w016a fixes issues with name duplication on the recently introduced scoreboards, missing sounds on trapped chests, cloud transparency issues, a bug that causes saddled pigs to jump continuously in certain situations, and a handful of additional "Minecraft" bugs. It's currently available for download directly from Mojang, with a server build available for those who prefer playing "Minecraft" in a multiplayer environment.
The inclusion of new lighting engine tweaks also has many players wondering if this could be the final "Minecraft" snapshot released before the "Minecraft" 1.5 Redstone Update goes live. With the lighting engine changes expected to make up the bulk of the Redstone Update, their introduction on this week's snapshot certainly suggests that Mojang could be in the final testing stages of the complete "Minecraft" 1.5 Redstone Update.
To download both the server and client builds of "Minecraft" snapshot 13w06a, head over to the official Mojang blog.