Minecraft Aether Mod Review
The Minecraft Aether mod is the largest and most comprehensive mod ever made for Minecraft, it adds an entirely new dimension of sky islands and a whole host of new block types, items and mobs as well. This is a review of the mod and will contain spoilers. If you want to be surprised, just scroll down and download the mod. If you want to know what you'd be letting yourself in for first, read on.
The Aether appears at first to be something of a heaven dimension, and in a heaven dimension populated by pretty golden flying pigs, surely nothing could go wrong, right? Wrong. The Aether is by far the most dangerous place I've ever set Minecraft foot in.
Let's begin by cataloging a few of the dangers:
Even on peaceful mode, there are clouds that spit snowballs at you. This means that you're always in danger. Always. The Aether does not respect your peace treaty. In addition to the cloud monsters (my term, not the official one) there are yellow slime type creatures that can bounce you waaayy up into the air and giggle silently to themselves as you take massive fall damage.
Golden sandy beaches, that seem pretty to walk on, have the opposite effect of soul sand, which you'll remember from Minecraft 101, slows you down. The golden sand in the Aether speeds you up unexpectedly to the point where you'll hurl yourself off the edge of your sky island without a second thought. One probably shouldn't complain about this feature too much, as it probably has very useful applications back in the 'real' Minecraft world, but in the Aether, it is hazardous indeed.
Fortunately if you fall whilst playing in the Aether, you will simply land near the portal you arrived in the Aether with. You can just go back through and resume play. If you fly a flying pig off a cliff in the Aether and misjudge the next ledge (because flying a flying pig is actually more like riding a pig with a pretty big jump) then you'll fly your flying pig right back to the normal Minecraft world, which is sort of fun, but puts you in a completely new place. The probability of getting lost due to falls is very high when you're wandering about in a sky dimension.
Other dangers in the Aether include poison (which can be collected by the bucketful) although there's also remedy. I therefore got the poison, I got the remedy, I got the poison and the lyrical remedy. Scratch the last part.
On the upside, the Aether isn't just a place where dangers lurk around every pastel bend. Being in the Aether offers you the possibility of becoming more dangerous yourself. It's possible to propell poisoned darts at your enemies, for instance, which is quite a step up from the old flint bow and arrows. There are plenty of other similar upgrades due to the new ores including Zanite and Gravitite, which produce very strong tools indeed.
Normal torches cannot be placed in the Aether, but glowstone works fine (probably because that's what the portals are made of.) If you want the torch aesthetic, you'll need to craft an ambrosium torch.
The Aether is amazing, but in a cruel twist of irony, the thing that makes the Aether amazing is also the thing that makes it rather annoying. Sure, endless sky islands sound like a good idea on paper, but when you realize that getting between them is incredibly difficult and you're stuck on a hunk of dirt, the appeal fades somewhat. To get around effectively, you need a Moa. Much like pigs, Moas are really jumping more than flying, but unlike pigs, Moas can jump mid-air, making for a longer flight time. The best Moa is a black Moa, which can make eight consecutive mid-air jumps. Moas can be incubated from eggs, or tamed with the petals of the Aechor plant. Unfortunately for you, neither Moa eggs nor Aechor plants are all that easy to come by.
There's more to the Aether mod of course there are dungeons which can be explored for loot and treasures, and there's also the acessories system, which gives you more slots for more stat boosting gear. I won't spoil it all, because the joy of discovery is the greatest joy known to man. Suffice to say, the Aether mod is a must have, must download, must play Minecraft mod.