Getting Started

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Welcome to Minetest! This page explains what Minetest is all about, how to get it, and how to start playing your first games alone or online.

“What is this strange ‘Minetest’ thing I keep hearing about?”

Welcome to Minetest (Minetest Game, Coniferous Forest)
  • Minetest is a platform on which you can play many games which are set in a world entirely made out of blocks, voxels.
  • You can play offline or online, in singleplayer or multiplayer.
  • Most games (but not all!) have a sandbox gameplay focused on construction, mining and creativity.
  • You can browse the list of games available on ContentDB.
  • You can install mods to modify certain aspects of gameplay. Mods are an inherent part of Minetest, it is even what games consist of.
  • Mods work out of the box when playing on servers, no additional installations required. Mods are server-side, everything is handled automatically.
  • The name "Minetest" only refers to the game engine. The name "Minetest Game" only refers to a game of that name.

Getting Minetest


  • Download Minetest.
    • The 64-bit build is extremely recommended. Always use this unless you are absolutely sure you're on an old machine that doesn't have a 64-bit processor.
  • Minetest on Windows is distributed in a portable archive. Extract it as a whole where you want, whether it be on your desktop or in your documents folder.
    • Keep in mind you need write permissions to the folder. Do NOT save to C:\Program Files\ or similar, as it will cause problems (no write access).
  • To run Minetest, open the extracted directory and look for the bin (binary) directory. Inside the bin directory is the Minetest executable, minetest.exe.
    • If you want a desktop shortcut or the like, just make create a shortcut to this executable.



If you are on a distribution with up to date enough repositories (e.g. Arch), you can install Minetest from your package manager.

Otherwise it is recommended to obtain Minetest through other means, such as the Flatpak package. For Ubuntu and similar, there is the Minetest PPA.

If all else fails, you can build from source by cloning the engine repository and following the build instructions.


Now that you have it installed you can either; play singleplayer, play on a local server or play online by connecting to a server.

Play Singleplayer

When first booting up Minetest, it will ask you to install a game. The button that shows up will direct you to the content browser which will list the games that are available. You can also browse the available games in your browser.

To install mods or texture packs, go to the "Content" tab, press "Browse Online Content" and pick the type of package you want to browse. To enable a texture pack select it in the content tab, and to enable mods you have installed, you need to select the world you want to play with mods in, press "Select mods", and enable the wanted mods.

For an interactive introduction to common Minetest gameplay elements, there is the Tutorial game.

Play Online

Joining multiplayer server is done in the "Join game" tab. To select a server, click on its name in the server list. If you know of a server from e.g. a friend that's not listed in the server list, you can manually input the address and port to the right. You do not need to install any mods to play on a server, everything provided by the server is sent to the client during connect!

When you are new to a server, you need to first register. Press the register button and input the username and password you want to use. Next time you log in with this username and password.

Accounts in Minetest are not centralised. This means that accounts are stored on each server, rather than on a central server. You do not have to use the same username, but using different passwords are recommended (however servers cannot see your password, it is one-way hashed during transit). Some servers allow a blank password but using a password is strongly recommended to stop others stealing your player and causing damage. You can change your password by clicking 'change password' on pause menu (ESC).

Basic Controls

Most of these can be changed in the “Change Keys” menu. For a more complete list of keyboard controls, see Controls.

The default and most important controls are:

  • W/A/S/D: move
  • Space: jump
  • Left mouse button: Punch, mine blocks, move an item stack in an inventory
  • Right mouse button: use (e.g. open chest or furnace), place blocks, move one item or split items in an inventory
  • Shift+Right mouse button: place blocks
  • Middle mouse button: move 10 items in an inventory
  • Mouse wheel: select item in the hotbar
  • 0-9: select item in the hotbar
  • Q: drop block, item or tool in hand
  • I: open or close the inventory menu
  • T: open the chat window
  • Shift: descend on ladders or sneak (walk slower, prevents falling off ledges)


The common Minetest gameplay is taught in the Tutorial game which is aimed towards complete newbies, it can be installed from the content browser.

A very brief but outdated introduction into Minetest can be seen in this video.

The following wiki pages explain some basic common Minetest concepts more or less in-depth:

As soon as you grasped the basics, you may want to look up which blocks and items are available and get an overview about farming. Just want to build? Try creative mode! If you want more, consider trying new mods and games. If you want to play online, you should read the gameplay notes for multiplayer servers.

Advanced topics: