Minecraft Survival Island Maps
What's the difference between a Survival Island map and simply playing single player survival mode? It's simple really. A user generated Minecraft world (that is to say, a world generated when the user elects to 'start a new world' is a vast place full of resources. If one doesn't find what one wants in one location, one simply keeps moving. A Survival Island map is an entirely different kettle of fish. For one, it is usually put together using MC Edit or a similar Minecraft world editing program and it is designed with limited resources.
The most popular Survival Island map of recent times, a map that coined the term 'Survival Island' with its name, consists largely of sand, though it does boast few blocks of surface grass. It is an incredibly small island and there is only one tree in the entire place. From this one tree you must begin to carve out a passage to security and safety. The sandy terrain makes that more difficult than one might imagine as it has a tendency to collapse on top of one with devastating results.
Survival on Survival Island is further complicated by the fact that animals do not naturally spawn there. This is because (spoiler alert for people who want to work out why there are no tasty piggies about the place) animals don't spawn within a 24 block radius or so of the player and they require both light and grass to spawn on. You'll notice that it is pretty difficult to get 24 blocks away from a lit patch of grass on Survival Island, and that's your problem. For a time your only food will be the wheat you manage to grow on the few patches of grass, until you finally (really big spoiler / hint here) mine dirt out from underground and enlarge your island with it, thereby creating pastures for animals to spawn on.
Once they start spawning, boy do they spawn. It would seem that Minecraft has its own ideas about how many animals should be in the world, and because you're stuck out on a little island all the way out in the middle of nowhere, the program forces large numbers of animals to spawn. Within two Minecraft days of getting my little patch of pasture up and running, I had a chest full of pork chops, eggs, leather and feathers. Can you do the same? Find out...