The Spawn Chunks 259: A Rebalancing Act

Aug 21, 2023 | podcast

Jonny, and Joel review Mojang’s new procedures on moderating player names, and player skins, keep new hostile mob reach at arms length, and read listener email about villager trading, controlled enchanting, and the importance of the Minecraft community.

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  • The Minecraft Survival Guide, Season 3
    • Raided and Ocean Monument, and a Piglin Bastion in the interest of filling out the new storage system.
      • No designs for a guardian farm just yet, but looking forward to having access to the prismarine block palette.
      • Bastions have a few unique blocks, but the motivation here was obtaining the netherite Upgrade smithing template, and some materials to do those upgrades.
        • Started digging for ancient debris, and upgrading some tools, and armour to netherite.
    • The storage system is (mostly) functional, so some decorative details are starting to be filled in.
      • The system has space for 128 items to be sorted, leaving a few blank for future blocks, and some manually sorted chests as well.
      • Decided on a “Neapolitan ice cream” design for the floor with stripped dark oak, birch, and cherry logs.

Minecraft News

Chunk Mail

FROM: Jud G.
DISCORD MEMBER: Landscape Artist
SUBJECT: Default Skins

Hi Joel and Johnny,

After watching Pix’s most recent episode I thought I would share that I often play Minecraft on mobile on the bus to work. I turn off my internet all the time to save data, and my custom skin is always available offline. Why have this in Bedrock but not in Java? It’s clearly a feature Mojang has thought about.

When I first started playing my default skin was Alex but recently after they added the other more diverse options, my default skin is now Kai. Maybe the way default skins function could be applied to saving custom skins for offline play

Thanks for all your work on the show. I’ve been listening since you had three stacks of episodes, and it’s awesome to see you get to four stacks. I am also a recent Landscape Artist supporter!

Jud thrives because of all he has learned from Pixelriffs and The Spawn Chunks.

FROM: Mech Morphic
SUBJECT: Aesthetic Block Interactions

Hi Joel and Pix!

Lately, I have been thinking about some aesthetic block interactions I would like to see added to Minecraft. One great example is between fence posts, and signs. I would like it if you could hang hanging signs off of fence posts, and have the fence post connect to the sign, with that connection’s block model matching seamlessly with the wooden bar of the hanging sign. I would also appreciate it if fence posts would visually connect to the back of regular signs that you place on their sides, instead of having the sign float mid-air.

Are there any minor aesthetic, block model interaction changes you would like to see changed in Minecraft?

MechMorphic traveled out of your render distance.

P.S. I’ve been tuning in to the podcast since 2019, and really enjoy it. Thanks for the work you both do producing it!

P.P.S. I’d love to see Etho on the show at some point to talk about his play style.

FROM: Iylo
SUBJECT: Mending Upgrades

Hi Jonny and Joel,

I’ve been thinking for a while that the main issue people have with the changes to the villager trading system is the mending enchantment specifically. For most players, it’s objectively required on almost every piece of gear, and I think that trivializes the survival aspects of the game. 

I believe a possible solution to this might be to make mending an upgrade template instead of an enchantment, like the netherite upgrade. Perhaps the template could be found in the End Cities, for balance? This way mending is still infinitely reproducible but at a cost, and acquiring the upgrade template will not be as easy as villager trading. Perhaps mending, and netherite could be mutually exclusive? Though that might be taking it too far.

Let me know your thoughts,

Iylo fell into the void after his elytra broke because he forgot to put mending on them.

FROM: ShadowStar13
SUBJECT: Adjusting The Grind


I was listening to a recent episode about the adjustments to villagers, and villager trading, and I had a thought about a way to help the enchanting system. What if the grind stone was more functional? Instead of just removing all enchantments on an item, what if a player could choose to remove just one enchantment. To balance this out there would be no XP returned to the player if they didn’t remove all the enchantments.  While not a fix to “broken” enchantment table it would be helpful, and perhaps give players a bit more control. 

What are your thoughts on other mechanics that could help with this?


FROM: McScrewGunn
DISCORD MEMBER: Landscape Artist
SUBJECT: Community

Good Afternoon, Good Evening, and Good Night, Joel and Pix.

I would like to speak to one of two points sparked by Episode 258.

There was a good deal of talk about community in that episode. It was all in service of how great the community is in regards to helping each other learn, pass on knowledge, and advance the game, and playing as a whole. 

I would state that it is more than just that, more than just people getting together, and playing the same game. I would stand atop a mountain, and proclaim it is more than just that.

You see, my wife and I purchased Minecraft for our son (McScrewSonn) as a reward for buckling down, and pushing through the difficulties of school, and society shutting down as it did for COVID-19. Then I started playing, and you can guess who’s videos I watched to learn how to play. That leads me to this guy with a “small” medieval town he is STILL building, and his Patreon Server. 

(Joel, please insert an ad for yourself here, you are too humble to do that yourself.)

And then I learned I had cancer.

So there I am, getting Chemo during COVID. That is a recipe for not going outside, and being in contact with anyone. My family, my D&D group which played virtually, and the online communities surrounding The Spawn Chunks, The Citadel, and Infinity Cove quite literally kept me going. I have made very dear friends who I cherish my time with, and look forward to playing with every time; you know who you are, and I know you are listening to this.

The Minecraft community is so much more than just sharing how to play, and how to manipulate the game. It is a wonderful cross continental, and cross generational gathering. I play with people as far apart as England, and Australia at the same time, and as young as my children, and older than I; because no one is as old as Elkhorn.

McScrewGunn did not die, Minecraft, and his new friends kept him going.

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