Minecraft's next major update is almost ready. Developer Mojang says that they could release patch 1.7 on PC and Mac as early as Friday.
It's been about four months since 1.6's release. However, Mojang's Nathan Adams said on the company blog that it feels like they've been working on the patch for a year. They've altered over a half million lines of code in the open-world building game.
The studio has dubbed 1.7 "the update that changed the world." That's not hyperbole. The game world of Minecraft will look very different after the patch hits. It doubles the amount of biomes in the world thanks to new types of vegetation and blocks. The new additions to the blocks collection include packed ice and red sand.
The layout of the world has been changed as well; players can expect smaller oceans and more logical placement of different biomes (i.e. no tundra next to desert). If you select the "Amplified" option, your world will have huge hills and mountains.
Here's the full list of feature changes:
New world generation!
Double the amount of biomes, with new trees/flowers/blocks.
New “Amplified” world option.
Less ocean, more awesome.
Two new types of wood.
Stained glass! With both blocks and panes.
Packed ice, red sand, podzol.
Lots of new flowers, including double-tall versions of current plants.
Portals can be bigger sizes!
Added more type of fish.
Redone the fishing mechanics. Can now catch junk and treasure too.
Fishing rod enchantments!
Put them in an item frame and hang them on your wall. They’re extra big!
Lots of new colours for lots of blocks!
Now with less lag!
Achievement & Statistics overhaul!
Now both world (or server) specific.
In multiplayer, it’s announced to everybody when you get an achievement.
You can move your mouse over this in the chat to see what it was!
Some new achievements and statistic types were added.
Zoomable achievements screen!
Servers can now put a 64×64 image called “server-icon.png” in their folder, that you will see on your server list.
You can see who’s online before joining a server; move your mouse over the player count!
Lots of hidden preparation for allowing name changes.
Resource pack changes!
You can now have multiple selected.
They can completely re-do your sounds, adding new ones or changing current ones.
Servers can now recommend a resource pack for you to use.
Chat & command improvements!
New commands to spawn mobs or blocks of any type.
Command block minecart!
Clickable links to achievements and items.
Click on somebody’s name in the chat to message them!
You can find all the bug fixes and more technical tweaks on Mojang's blog. The blog post also provides instructions on how to try out the pre-release version of the patch. Whether or not 1.7 goes live on Friday will depend on how the pre-release patch performs.