In this blog post we’ll talk about how to code Minecraft mods, and the different types of mods that you can create. As well as what programs and websites are available - including a fun Minecraft Coding Quest class, and we’ll even give you step-by-step instructions on how to create a very simple Minecraft mod.
Before we go into too many details, let's first address what a mod is. The word mod is short for modification. In this case, a Minecraft mod will modify the game’s behavior. Meaning that you can make things happen in the game that wouldn’t normally happen. Let’s briefly overview three different examples to better understand this concept.
First, imagine your character is running low on health and it’s surrounded by enemies. You could run a mod that replenishes your health and gives you weapons to defend yourself. Another example could be that you want to build a house, or any structure instantly. You could run a mod to build that structure anywhere in your world with a click of a button, instead of spending hours building it by hand. Finally, we could go up several levels of complexity and run a mod that creates a mini-game inside of Minecraft. This mini-game could be a multiplayer game where you and your friends have to go through several levels, collecting items, or fighting enemies.
All of these examples are possible thanks to the power of code, and with all the different resources available on the internet it’s becoming easier than ever for anybody to code mods. Now, before you can run all of these cool mods in Minecraft we first have to learn how to create them!
Where do I get mods, how much are they?
Let’s first answer the most common questions people often ask themselves when trying to get mods. One important thing to note is that you have to be extremely careful when visiting pages on the internet, and even more so when you’re downloading files and installing them in your computer.
How do I get Minecraft mods?
There are probably thousands of websites that host Minecraft mods. One of the most popular sites is minecraftmods.com. It is important to note that the great majority of mods need forge. Forge is a program that allows users to install and run mods in Minecraft.
As a side note, before you start downloading and installing things on your computer, make sure that you have an antivirus installed and that it is up to date. Also, when browsing for mods always choose the ones that have good reviews.
Are mods in Minecraft free?
Yes. Most of the mods out there are made by other players that want to share their creations. There’s a lot of free content out there, so you shouldn’t need to pay anything to download mods or install them.
What if I want to create my own mods?
With today’s technology coding your own mods is pretty simple. One option is to use Java and Forge. You’ll need to install several things. First you’ll need to install Java - to be able to run and test your code, Forge - to run the mods in Minecraft, a text editor - to create the code, and obviously Minecraft. For more information about that you can visit this Tutorials/Creating Forge mods Gamepedia page.
The other option is to use a website that does most of the work. LearnToMod is a website that sends the mods directly to your own server without the need to install anything extra. These mods run in a multiplayer server that you can start from within the website. This is the website we use to run our Minecraft modding classes.
How does LearnToMod work?
Even though this website does require a subscription it will balance out once you get to experience how easy it is to use. After creating an account you can immediately start creating mods. If you’re a first time user, they have hundreds of coding assignments and tutorials that will help you get up to speed.
Let’s first start our server, join it, and then create a very simple mod!
1. Start and Join Your Server
Click on the green box in the home page, or go to Play > My Server. Then, click on Start Server.
This will start one of LearnToMod’s servers, build a world, and then return the I.P. address of that server. It will take anywhere from 5 to 10 minutes. While this is loading open Minecraft - specifically the 1.9.2 Java version for PC or MacOS.
In Minecraft go to Multiplayer > Direct Connect, and enter the I.P. address in that text field. Then, click Join Server.
Once inside your server, pause your game and go code your mod!
2. Create a Mod
Next, we’ll create a mod. From the top navigation menu click Play > Mods. To create a mod, we simply need to give it a name, choose Blockly (Multiplayer), and then click Code on the tile that appears on the right side.
LearnToMod uses Blockly code. The same type of drag and drop blocks that Scratch coding uses. There are different menus and all of them have different types of blocks. These blocks connect to each other like puzzle pieces
3. Start Coding
In this example we’ll code a simple mod that sends a message, spawns a mob, and gives the player a weapon. We first need a main function. This function is the starting point of our code.
First open the Functions menu. Then, drag the first block to your white canvas. Finally, rename the function main.
4. Code the rest of the mod
We’ll speed up a little bit and show you what the final code looks like. Don’t worry, the blocks are color coded it should be very easy for you to find the menus where they’re located.
The first line of blocks in the main function will simply send a message to the player. The second line will spawn a zombie in front of the player. And, the third line will give the player a diamond sword.
5. Run your mod!
After you finish coding your mod, you simply have to click the green Mod button at the top of the page.
This will send a mod book and place it inside your mods chest. Open the chest and grab the book. Once in your hand simply left or right-click to run your mod. This mod sends a message, spawns a Zombie, and gives the player a Diamond Sword.
It’s that easy!
Try our free Minecraft Modding class
We’re currently offering a free trial for our Minecraft Modding class using LearnToMod. In this free intro class, we’ll introduce students to the LearnToMod platform. They’ll also start building their very first mod! This class is intended for students in grades 4th - 6th.
In the intro class, students will use a simulator that is built into the website, and not actual Minecraft since we’ll mainly focus on the website features. However, once students enroll in the Level 1 class, they’ll get access to a Minecraft account for the duration of the class - if they don’t have one or don’t want to purchase one. As a reminder, students in Levels 1 - 3 will be using the Minecraft 1.9.2 Java version for PC or MacOS. Chromebooks, tablets, and smart phones will not work in this class.
Written by Sonny Najar, a Create & Learn instructor. After earning a BS in Computer Science, he began creating software and curriculum in 2015 that made learning Computer Science fun and engaging for K -12 students.