E3 is happening this week and this means there have been a ton of new game announcements. Most of these have been about console and PC games, but there are some that involve the mobile market too (such as the upcoming South Park game). Microsoft and Mojang also announced a new update for Minecraft that will be coming later this year. This is called the Better Together Update and the big focus is the ability for console, PC and mobile users to play together.
Such cross-platform support hasn’t been possible in the past because of how things were setup, but Mojang has been hard at work on this for a while. Minecraft on the smartphone has been known as Minecraft Pocket Edition, but with this new focus on cross-platform support, they’re going to unify them all. So all three versions of the game (console, Windows 10 and mobile) will simply be known as Minecraft as soon as the update rolls out later this year.
This big update also comes with support for in-game servers. The ability for someone to host and control their own independent server for Minecraft has been around for ages, but this update will add in a server browser within the game’s start menu. You’ll have the ability to search for servers right in the game so you’re just a few clicks away from joining one of these listed servers. The company says they’ll be launching with 4 servers this year including Lifeboat, Mineplex, InPVP, and CubeCraft.
The last big announcement in Minecraft’s Better Together Update consists of some major enhancements to the graphics of the game. This free update adds optional 4K HDR support and it also comes with improved lighting, shadows, water effects. There will also be some new DLC with one of them being called the Super Duper Graphics Pack for Xbox and Windows 10 customers. This pack includes dynamic shadows, movement in leaves and grass, new textures for mobs and villagers, directional lighting, edge highlighting and more. If you wonder why it seems that PS4 users are left out, that’s likely because they intentionally want Minecraft to play the best on Microsoft hardware and software, and mobile platforms which are a massive market too.