The Rise of Minecraft Bedrock

First thing first, what is Minecraft?

Minecraft Bedrock

Minecraft is one of the most successful sandbox game that emphasize on mining and crafting. But then you might ask, what is a "sandbox game"? To summarise it in few words, a sandbox game puts minimal restrictions on the player. So in other words, a sandbox game is an open world game where you're allowed to roam around anywhere you like and complete the goals/missions in your own style, ie, there are multiple ways to get the job done. 

Minecraft: Java Edition, the original game

Minecraft started as a small project by Markus 'Notch' Persson(a video game programmer and designer from Sweden who is also the founder Mojang Studio, the Swedish game development studio known for Minecraft) in 2009, he used Java programming language, hence the suffix "Java edition". But after positive reception on TIGSource(The Independent Game Source) forum, he started adding features according to feedback. As the game started to grow, he added more and more developers to the team. And today the game is one of the biggest video game ever(over 200 million copies sold), it is even speculated that soon it will take the number one spot for most selling video game ever.

Minecraft Bedrock, the beginning

The first instance of Bedrock engine(the reason of referring it as Bedrock Edition) can be backtracked to 2011, it was originally launched exclusively for Xperia Play under the name Pocket Edition. But soon(within few months) it was made available to other mobile platforms. Unlike the original game, Bedrock engine is programmed in C++, so even though it appears to look the same at first glance, there are some subtle differences that only the veteran players will notice if they play the other edition.
There were many more versions based on Bedrock Engine but in 2017, Microsoft released the "Better Together" update, merging all the Bedrock versions under the same name, Minecraft(no suffix). So now if you want to play Bedrock edition, you'll need Microsoft account.

Minecraft Java vs Minecraft Bedrock

There are two categories of differences 


Minecraft Java is available only on PC. It supports all three Major OS; Windows, MacOS and Linux. 
Minecraft Bedrock is available on all major gaming devices, Xbox, Playstation, Smartphone, Nintendo Switch, Tablets, Amazon Fire(TV, Phone, Tablet), etc. So if you're playing on one of these devices, you're playing Bedrock version. 
If you are playing on your Windows PC, then you'll have to differentiate on basis of experience. 


Like I mentioned, both versions have similar looks and playing experience, so new players probably won't even notice any differences. But there are some key differences that you can notice yourself.
1. Login/Launcher : Minecraft Java requires you to have a Mojang Account(Now it requires Microsoft account for new buyers, old Mojang accounts will be migrated soon). Bedrock will ask you to login to your Microsoft account.
Minecraft Java
Java Launcher
Minecraft Bedrock

Bedrock Launcher

2. Title/Home Screen : Java Edition will clearly say Java edition.
Minecraft Java
Minecraft Java
Minecraft Bedrock
Minecraft Bedrock
3. Game mechanics : Some mob mechanics change slightly in Bedrock, for example, Drowned will spawn any 2 deep water block if it's dark enough. And they have higher chances of dropping a trident even though they're not wielding it. But in Java, the Drowned must be wielding the trident to drop it. Similarly, some Redstone mechanism behave differently.
4. World generation : Even though both games are made identical, their entire codebase is different. So if you enter the same seed(world ID) in both versions, you'll get two entirely different worlds. If you saw an awesome seed in a YouTube video but when you entered in your game and it looks different, then you are playing a different version than that video. Another thing to note is even though people claim that Java edition is more optimised in terms of world generation, Bedrock will appear to be running smoother if you own a low end PC.

Why Minecraft Bedrock is trending more than Java/legacy?

If you were reading carefully so far then you already know the answer. Bedrock version support cross platform gameplay. What that means is if you have a PC and your friend has a Playstation and your another friend only has a smartphone, you all can still play together thanks to Microsoft's better together update. And we all know that any game is more fun if we play together with our friend. On top of that, more people own a smartphone than a PC. And smartphone version of Minecraft costs much less(somewhere between one fourth to one third). So it is attracting many new players in smartphone. And let's not forget the fact that Microsoft store lists Bedrock version of Minecraft. So anyone purchasing from there ends up getting Bedrock version.
So that's my analysis of why Minecraft Bedrock is in trend even though majority of Minecraft YouTubers and streamers are Java edition players. 

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