It’s a 3D block party.

The New York Hall of Science hosts Minefaire on Saturday, Nov. 2, and Sunday, Nov. 3.

Produced by Open World Events, this two-day “official Minecraft community event” promises everything that people love about the video game, but IRL (in real life). Tournaments, build battles and escape rooms will be the center of the action, but players will also take off their Acer VR Mixed Reality Headsets and participate in costume contests and watch live stage shows. For the really serious, there will be networking opportunities with famous genre YouTubers (i.e. Wizard Keen and Stampy from Wonder Quest), official ambassadors and parents of enthusiasts.

In other spots, attendees will shop at the largest official Minecraft merchandise store in the world and create plastic masterpieces in LEGO building zones. (Please click here to read a QNS post about the the world’s largest display of LEGO products, “The Art of the Brick,” which is on display at the New York Hall of Science until Jan. 26, 2020.)

Admission prices run from $19.99 to $34.99, but children under age 3 can attend for free. Operating hours are 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Released in 2011, Minecraft is a video game created by Markus Alexej Persson, a Swedish national, for Mojang AB, a Swedish subsidiary of Xbox. Microsoft purchased all intellectual property rights for a reported $2.5 billion in 2014.

There are no specific goals and no defined end or finish line. It’s in the “sandbox” genre, meaning that players collect and trade different 3-D cubes and fluids (called “blocks”) which represent materials such as lava, stone, tree trunks and water to create their own virtual worlds. Gamers then explore landscapes — ranging from forested jungles to deserts with barren plains to frozen snowfields — to gather certain resources and fight each other or deal with non-player characters such as hostile animals and chicken that can be hunted for food.

There are five modes — Adventure, Creative, Hardcore, Spectator and Survival — that can completely change scenarios. For example, players struggle to maintain their health and acquire sufficient vital resources in Survival mode.

Currently, Minecraft is the best-selling video game of all time with more than 176 million copies sold and more than 112 million players who engage monthly or more frequently. Along with the commercial success, it has received awards from industry expert groups in such categories as Best Downloadable Game, Kids Choice, Best Game to Play at Work, Video Arts, Innovation and Best Arcade Game.

The popularity has attracted a few spin-offs, such as Minecraft Dragons and Minecraft Earth. It has also led to conventions such as this one, which is actually part of a multi-month, 10-city tour. After this weekend, Open World Events takes Minefaire to The Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University in Philadelphia on Dec. 28 and Dec. 29.

The entrance to New York Hall of Science is at 47-01 111th St. at the western edge of Flushing Meadows Corona Park. A parking lot is on site and the museum is about four blocks from the 7 train’s 111th Street station.

Images: Minecraft


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