3D printers are, indisputably, super awesome
. They're boxes full of magic, hope, and lasers, which create substance from nothing and reality
. Coincidentally, Minecraft
basically does the exact same thing, by providing the user with a cuboid sandbox for their imagination to run wild in. Now, these two worlds of creation can be joined together via Mineways, a 3D model-exportation tool created by Eric Haines.
The process breaks down like this: Using Mineways, Minecraft
players can select a portion of the world they've built and export it as a texture file and 3D model, in file formats compatible with the rendering software used by 3D printers. Those files can then be printed, creating an adorable little real-life version of whatever it is you had exported.
If you're not part of the 1 percent and as such do not have access to a 3D printer, your exported files can be sent to a printing service like Shapeways
, which does exactly what a 3D printing service sounds like it would do. Based on the size and complexity of the model, getting something printed can run from 25 bucks for a small doodad to several hundred dollars for a complete landscape.
Somewhere, a very wealthy Minecraft
/model train enthusiast is extremely pleased. Click here
to grab the open source software directly from Eric, and to see an in-depth how-to guide.