The Lives of Darwin Blackwolf

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Wool And Lightning Don't Mix

Added: May 20th, 2017

A couple of weeks ago, it was late on Saturday night, and I had taken the night off.  WTL sent me a message around 11 p.m. to tell me the barn on the Experimental Farm had been destroyed.

Now mind you, over the course of the last year, that barn was the most hit build on the entire server.  Lightning was always the cause.  This is what you get when you build with wool.  It had red wool walls and a white wool roof.  The inside included wood and glass, plus give or take a few penned bunnies and pigs.

This time around, the barn was a total write-off.  All it had left were a few unburnt mementos of what used to stand on the lot, and the undamaged basement.

The pigs and bunnies were running rampant on the property.  Fortunately, WTL gated the exit to prevent them from escaping into the urban cityscape.

I'm not one to take someone else's build, even if the builder is gone for good, and make major changes to it.  Sure, I'll add a torch here or there to help with the lighting, and I might embellish the property a bit, but never would I tear down a build and make something new on it.

But the irony of this destruction is that I'd felt for a while like changing the roof from a white wool roof, to an iron roof.  The total destruction of the barn was a sign.  Rebuild the barn in a way that it would stand the test of time.

I chose an iron roof to go with the red hardened clay.  It was either red clay, or redstone blocks, and that would have made it the most powerful build in the city that does absolutely nothing but house animals while giving off a faint light.

At the time of typing this entry, the barn has once more been erected, and while I was at it, I switched up the silos' roofs to iron from a grey wool, and I added a shack on the property to make more sense of all the chests that have been added over the years.

I also retained the signs on the property that indicate where both Exolhar and Becassine paid the ultimate prices to creepers in the past.  A keepsake and a reminder.

At this time, I haven't switched the primary gravel path to a dirt path, and the silos remain made of red wool.  We shall see what the future brings to both.


A bit of history: The Experimental Farm was loosely based on the Ottawa landmark by the same name.  Mark did a great job on this project.  For those who don't know, the Central Experimental Farm is a heritage site that was built in 1886 in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada.  It functions as a research centre, an agricultural facility, and a working farm.

In Search Of Villages

Added: May 6th, 2017

There are several ways to get new villagers:

  1. Use a Villager spawn egg.  But that's cheating;
  2. Offer two villagers a room at Exolhar's B&B and hope for kids;
  3. Converting Zombie Villagers with a special elixir and a golden apple;
  4. Use a Command Block.  But again, that would be cheating.
  5. Find new villages and protect them for future use.  Or you can bring your new friends home with you.


Converting Zombie Villagers takes a lot of patience and skill, and there's a good chance you won't get the right villager for some time.  As I learned by getting two Cartographers instead of Librarians with the Mending enchantment.

But before working on a mating ritual, I decided to take one final chance of finding new villagers.

I headed north, and fell upon two brand new villages along the way.  Unfortunately, neither contained any villagers, which was perplexing.  I could have travelled further and hoped for a third village, but these two empty villages was enough of a sign to me that I should go back home.

So it's official: the Hive Apartment complex is now in the baby-making business.  How long it'll take to build the machine, and what it'll look like, is something for the near future.

Beetroot At The Fortress

Added: May 6th, 2017

The Epsilon Project has been around for a very long time, and with the incorporation of Triviis into our world a few years ago, it added more projects to our schedules.

Every once in a while, I subway my way to the town of Triviis, look around, and then head over to my fortress to either look around and reminisce, or make improvements.

A long time ago, I built a massive garden at the fortress, but I left a big gaping hole within it for future additions.  With the addition of beetroot to the game, it was only a matter of time before I found the time to add a section to my fortress garden.

I was originally going to gobble up the entire free space for a new garden, but I wanted to keep the pool of water for a future project.  What's interesting about this pool of water is that it passes below the perimeter walkway and joins with the bigger pool of water on the outside.

This is only one of many projects I have planned for my Triviis fortress, so stay tuned for more.

As well, with both the City of Nexus and my Triviis fortress now having beetroot gardens, both the Town of Darwinia and Castle Blackwolf will eventually require beetroot gardens as well.

A Death Like None Other

Added: April 20th, 2017

I love a good story.  Maybe this one will be as good for you as it was for me to tell WTL last night.  Albeit longer as I don't have character limitations like I did in Minecraft.

At one point, WTL stepped away from the game for a few minutes, and that's while I was climbing my makeshift diving board that's located on the DB Estate in the City of Nexus.

On me, I had all my good stuff.  Weapons, tools, armour, and ample resources.  I knew the risk even before making the boat out of five planks of birch wood.  But deep down inside, I threw all precautions in the wind.

Once at the top of my makeshift diving board (it sends me flying into Nexus Bay below), I placed the boat on the slime block and I jumped in.

At first, I couldn't reach the button that sets off the slime blocks (one throws up, and the other above it throws sideways), so I had to control the boat as if I was on water, slowly turning it so my pointer was right on the button.

I took a deep breath and pushed the button.  It sent me up, but the slime block that throws me sideways came out too quickly, so my head was sticking out the slime block for a second before it retracted and I landed on the slime block again, still sitting in the boat.  I tried again several times, and failed as miserably.  For some odd reason, somewhere between 1.08 and 1.11, something happened to the timing where the diving board only works once in a while.

After about seven or eight failed attempts (maybe more), something weird happened with the diving board.  Instead of my head sticking out from the above slime block, everything went black.  The heads-up display (HUD) was still there, and my health bar was going down fast.

I quit the game quickly, hoping by coming back in, I'd be saved.  That was not the case.  I was down to three hearts, and all I had as a tool on me was an iron axe that didn't want to break whatever block I was stuck inside.  Suddenly, I died.  My first death in, oh, eons?

I re-spawned at the bed near the Nether portal inside Warehouse Prime, and within a minute, without weapons, armour, or anything else, I braved running through purposefully darkened beach filled with trigger-happy skeletons, deep-throated zombies, and crazy exploding creepers to get to my loot.

After looking around, I managed to recover everything but one thing: 50 levels of experience out of the 58 I had before dying.  Where they went, who knows.  When I was up on the diving board, I noticed the boat had become a part of the furnace (see image below).  Ouch.  That answers why my axe didn't break it.  The official message was that I had suffocated in a wall, but I'd rather say "Darwin Blackwolf suffocated in a furnace while sitting in a wooden boat."  Somewhere out there, Herobrine is laughing.  And so am I.  After all, it's just a game, and games are meant to be fun.  And while painful on some level, this death was fun.

I hope if you've had a death in Minecraft, that you've at least had one or two of them you were able to laugh off afterward.

Lightning Strikes Spark End To WTL Tower

Added: April 20th, 2017

Another victim of the increase in lightning strikes is WTL Tower, located across the DB Estate in the City of Nexus.  At least two lightning strikes later, WTL decided it would be a better idea to just remove the building from the face of the city and figure out his next move for the property.

Considering the deep pool of water beneath WTL Tower, I volunteered to build him a slime-powered diving board.

It was perfect timing that I happened to be in the area when I noticed WTL taking down his building.  But it would have been nice to have noticed him doing so long before he was almost done taking it down.

Once WTL starts work on his next project here, I will include a gallery for it as well.  In the meanwhile, enjoy these snapshots.

Here are some interesting bits of information about this site over the years:

It was December 1st, 2011, when WTL first claimed the spot as his.

On December 5th 2011, he built a glass dome atop a shallow hole he had dug out.

The hole down to the bedrock was dug by January 12th, 2012.

Construction on WTL Tower began on January 24th, 2012.

On January 25th, 2012, WTL Tower was open for business.

And finally, on April 8th, 2017, WTL Tower was decommissioned.

RIP WTL Tower: 2012-2017.

Gold Farm Somewhat Broken

Added: April 20th, 2017

Sometime after 1.8 was updated, Impulse's X97 Gold Farm broke.  It would appear the fault lies in the changed aggravated attitude of zombie pigmen, and the inability to hit a zombie pigman through a half-slab of space with a snowball.  So that snowball's chance in hell now has a smaller chance than ever.

I also noticed the power that goes to the starting powered rail turns off too quickly now.

When last I looked at the comments to the X97 Gold Farm on YouTube, I saw no news on a fix.  I'm hoping to fix it, and if I succeed or fail, I will mention it.  Either as a gallery, or on the main page.

In the meanwhile, I'm thankful I had set up an emergency manual button to turn on the crushers when I first built the machine.  While I can't just step away from the keyboard to let it run on its own anymore, by adding trapdoors instead of glass by the crushers, I can at least keep the machine going manually.

The reduced aggravation of zombie pigmen remains, but one good punch over a trapdoor on a zombie pigman allows even more zombie pigmen to join them in the crushers.  Experience abounds, albeit in a manual fashion, which isn't what the machine was meant to be in the first place, but what's worse?  That it just doesn't work at all, or that it at least still works manually?

On a related note, back when I first built Impulse's machine, the gold swords went to a lava pool.  Now that we can recycle gold swords, I switched it over to a furnace that recycles the swords.  Instead of using coal or wood as fuel, I decided to use mushroom blocks.  The reason?  Zombie pigmen don't drop as many swords as they used to, and while coal can smelt eight swords per piece of coal,  it's a waste of fuel when you only get 2-5 swords every few minutes.  A mushroom block smelts closer to one item per block, so there's less waste.

WTL's Castle Renovations, Part One

Added: April 20th, 2017

If you're not playing on the Easy level, then you have to worry that sooner or later, lightning will cause damage to your builds if you're using flammable materials, such as wood and wool.

Each game night, WTL and I find ourselves looking over our builds, as well as others', to check on lightning damage.  Sometimes, we're lucky and it's just fencing that needs replacing.  Other times, half a tree grove or half the roof of a building is gone.

When WTL realized lightning was causing more and more in-city damage, he started work on renovating his high atop the mountain castle to fire-proof it.

In part one, I include four snapshots of the exterior of the castle from all four sides.  I'm not sure how many parts there will be, but I have noticed WTL still has a lot of work ahead of him.

Copyright 2012-2017