Survival Island, Minecraft World Download
Survival Island is a wildly popular Minecraft survival world map. (Can over 300,000 downloaders be wrong? I doubt it highly. History has shown over and over again that popular opinion is always the correct one.) This probably sounds just like the rest of the Minecraft game at this point, but Survival Island is different in several respects. For starters it is only about 30 blocks wide and 45 or so long at its most extreme points. The object of the game is to survive for as long as possible on this small island with very limited resources. Even dirt is a precious and rare resource on this sandy isle. You'll never know the true joys of running into an underground stash of dirt until you've been marooned on a sandy isle with no way of making food.
With such a small plot of land, you must use all your wiles and innovative spirit to carve out a comfortable lifestyle for yourself. The creator of the map recommends playing on at least Normal difficulty, if you don't you might not experience all the joys of being assailed on all sides by creatures who loathe you.
Much of the fun is in finding your own unique way to survive and civilize the island. For a player like me, who usually uses a bunch of mods and almost always plays on peaceful mode, playing Survival Island as it was meant to be played is actually quite a breath of fresh air. I've even opted to play it with the default graphics set for a more gritty feel. If you feel that you've gotten away from the essence of Minecraft with your cat themed pixel art, or just want a new challenge, Survival Island is a well balanced survival map. It does have it's challenges, but it doesn't make you hate your life.
I'm going to put the download link here so if you want to discover Survival Island newly for yourself, go and download it and play it now. It's just a world save file that can be unzipped and added to your saves file. If you keep reading, there may be some spoilers, though I will not reveal all of Survival Island's secrets.
Though the island is small, there are dungeons where aggressive mobs spawn. Spawns on the island itself are much more rare. Frustratingly, no animal mobs at all spawn naturally on the island. One Minecraft week in, I'm undertaking a project to see if they might spawn if I extend the grassy sub island on which the original tree grew. (There is only one tree on the island, but that's really all you need. One tree can easily forest the entire place with its saplings in a surprisingly short time.)There's plenty of coal on the island, but the sand runs much deeper in some places than you might think it would.