FAQ

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Revision as of 04:49, 1 August 2022 by GreenDimond (talk | contribs) (Added Minclone, fps/coordinates, low fps, and UI questions. Swapped some links.)
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This is a collection of some frequently asked questions about Minetest. For technical problems, refer to Troubleshooting.

What is Minetest?

Minetest is a free software game engine desgined to create voxel-based games. A detailed description can be found at Minetest.

About the Engine

How much does Minetest cost?

Nothing. It's free.

Is Minetest a clone of Minecraft?

The very first version of Minetest was intended to replicate what Minecraft Alpha had been shown to do at the time (2010)[1]. It's goals soon diverged from Minecraft and eventually became a game engine instead.

Who created Minetest?

Perttu Ahola (also known as celeron55). It is currently developed by this random bunch of lunatics as well as the community.

What is Minetest written in?

Minetest is written in C++ using a forked version of the Irrlicht rendering engine. The game and mod API uses the Lua language.

Can I change the code myself?

Yes. Minetest is freely licensed (LGPL 2.1 and others).

When will the next version of Minetest be released?

Check the GitHub milestones for a good idea of how far along the next version is.

How do I update Minetest?

This depends on your operating system and installation method. You will usually either download the newest version or run an update command. Some systems may require you to move your worlds and mods. If you are using the Git version, simply pull and compile every time you want to update.

Where and how do I find games to install?

Check out the Minetest ContentDB for a list of games. You can easily install games (and other content) through the client in the Content tab ('Browse online content'). You may also manually install games you find on the forum or GitHub to the "games" folder in your Minetest data directory. For more information about games, see Games.

Why does the UI look so old?

A lot of the interface uses default Irrlicht styling from before form styling was introduced. It is possible to make the UI look modern, but UI design is already a pain on its own, coupled with the quirks of the formspec system Minetest uses. A proper GUI replacement may arrive in the future.

The main menu sucks!

We're working on it.

I have a technical problem, how to fix this?

See Troubleshooting.

Is Minetest multi-threaded?

Minetest's map generation has options for multi-threading, with some caveats. Multi-threading for gameplay logic isn't very useful, but asynchronous logic is already supported, with more support on the way.

Why is it called "Minetest"?

Minetest started as an experiment (a test, if you will) to replicate Minecraft Alpha. The name stuck, and no one can agree on a new one.

Terminology

Mod
A "module" or "modification" to a game. See Mods.
Game
A collection of modules configured to run on the Minetest engine. See Games.
Subgame
A legacy term for game.
Texture pack
A set of client-side textures that overwrite included game or mod textures. See Texture Packs.
Node
Technical name for a single cube or block.
Mob
A moving creature. See Mobs.

About Minetest Game

What is Minetest Game?

Minetest Game is the game currently included with Minetest, mostly intended to show features and act as a base for mods. See Minetest Game for more details.

Where is [insert Minecraft feature here]?

Minetest Game is not intended to replicate Minecraft in any way. Features from Minecraft may be found in mods or other games (try out Mineclone2 for a close analog of Minecraft). If you would like to play a game with Minecraft features, we recommend playing Minecraft.

See also Differences from Minecraft.

Which Mineclone should I play?

Mineclone2 is the more popular and usually more stable version of Mineclone. Mineclone5 is a fork of Mineclone2 with a fast and loose development process resulting in more features sooner, but more instability. Nearly all features from Mineclone5 end up in Mineclone2. It is worth noting that Mineclone5 worlds may be converted to Mineclone2, but not the reverse.

Mineclonia is a somewhat inactive fork focused on stability. Mineclone (the original) was a project from 2015 intended to replicate Minecraft in Minetest, now succeeded by Mineclone2.

Where is all the content? No mobs? No story?

Minetest Game is not designed with a story or goal in mind. It is simply a sandbox to play in. Mods or other games provide actual gameplay content. Try looking for some on the ContentDB.

You should add [insert feature here] to Minetest Game!

Minetest Game is currently in a low-development state, mostly just maintenance and bug fixes. New game features are not being considered as Minetest Game is intended to be retired from "default" status.

How does [insert item or block here] work? How do I craft it?

Refer to Blocks and Items for information on usage and crafting. You can also install a crafting guide mod to view available crafting recipes.

I was told there were dungeons. Where are they?

Make sure you enable dungeons when you create your world. They tend to spawn generally anywhere under or on the surface, you'll run into one eventually.

Community

Where can I ask questions?

You can ask in IRC (#minetest), the Forum, Discord, or Reddit. It is recommended to search history and archives first, many questions have already been answered.
Be mindful of which category (thread, channel, etc.) your question may fall under when asking on certain platforms.

Find out where you can get involved here.

How do I install third-party content?

You can find all kinds of community-made content on the Minetest ContentDB. You can find and install content from this database using "Browse online content" found in the Content tab in the main menu.

For manually installing content, see Installing Games, Installing Mods, Installing Maps, and Installing Texture Packs.

How do I connect to servers? Do I need a multiplayer account?

There is no globally valid multiplayer account in Minetest. For each server, you can use a different name and password. The "account" is created at first login. This way, only you can access your player and inventory on that particular server. You can always play singleplayer with no need for any username and password.

How do I make my own server?

Read Setting up a server and Server. See Server commands for a list of usual included chat commands.

How do I get an account for the Minetest Wiki?

By requesting one at https://forum.minetest.net/viewtopic.php?f=3&t=10473.

Gameplay

What are the controls?

See Controls.

How big is the map?

The map is a cube with a side length of 61840 node (blocks) lengths. The map has thus a volume equal to the volume of 618403 nodes = 236,487,637,504,000 nodes. The coordinates range from −30912 to 30927 in all dimensions.

See also Coordinates and World boundaries.

How do I enable full-screen?

On many systems your OS fullscreen key (such as alt+F11 on Ubuntu) should work just fine. Otherwise, navigate to Advanced Settings in the Settings tab in the main menu, and go to Graphics > In-Game > Advanced > Fullscreen, where you can double-click to change the value or use the Edit button. You will need to restart Minetest for this to take effect.

How do I see my coordinates or check my FPS?

Use the F5 key to toggle debug info (available info may differ per game or server). The top of your screen may display your FPS and coordinates, among other information. Pressing F5 again will toggle the profiler, and then wireframe mode if the debug privilege is possessed. A final press will toggle debug info off.

Why is my FPS so low?

There are many reasons your FPS could be low. A common culprit is having infinite viewing range enabled. Toggle it with R by default. You can also try decreasing your regular view range using the - by default (+ to increase). Render distance is measured in nodes.

How do I find my house again?

You can keep track of your coordinates (depending on the game) using debug info (F5). If you want, you can teleport to coordinates using

/teleport x y z

See Server commands#Teleportation. Requires "teleport" privilege.

In Minetest Game, you can avoid getting lost again if use /sethome at home to save your home position and /home to teleport back to it.

How do I set my spawn point?

If you play Minetest Game, you can build a bed and sleep at night. On your next life, you will spawn on the bed.

Otherwise, you can find a mod (such as this one) or set your spawn point for all worlds using static_spawnpoint = (x,y,z) in your minetest.conf file.

How do I increase the brightness?

See Troubleshooting#The_screen_is_too_dark.

How do I fly?

To fly, you first need the "fly" privilege. Use the K key to toggle flying. Ascend with the jump key (default: space bar) and descend with the sneak key (default: shift).

See also: Controls/Movement modes#Fly mode

How do I sprint?

With default Minetest behavior you can "go fast" using the "fast" privilege (toggled with the J key) and your auxilary key (default: E). This is a lot faster than natural sprinting. There are some mods and games that implement conventional sprinting.

See Controls/Movement modes#Fast mode.

Why can't I find the mod default or [insert mod here]?

Some mods are part of games. Mods like default and wool are usually part of Minetest Game and are not meant to be installed as seperate mods. For a mod depending on e.g. default to work, you will need to use Minetest Game. Good game design practice is to prefix game-specific mods with the game name. Minetest Game is a particularly confusing case, unfortunately.

Game and Mod Development

See Modding FAQ on the Minetest Development Wiki.

What language are games and mods written in?

Minetest uses the Lua language for games and mods. It is simple, light, and fast. You can find plenty of tutorials online.

Can I write games or mods in [insert language here]?

If it can transpile to Lua or you connect your own interpreter, yes. Loria is written in Fennel. Otherwise, support for other languages will not be made first-class. Lua is designed for embedding and we will stick to it.

Why can't I use modern Lua features?

Minetest uses LuaJIT which is based on Lua 5.1. In the future if PUC Lua ever matches JIT performance, Minetest could change to a newer version of Lua.

What is the Minetest API?

The Minetest API gives you access to everything the engine currently has to offer. You can find the latest API reference here. A ReadTheDocs version can be read here.

How can I learn to make games and mods?

We recommend the Minetest Modding Book to start.

I get an error or warning message, what does it mean?

See Troubleshooting#Error messages without crashes.

Can I sell games I make with Minetest?

As long as you comply with the license, sure.