Gamer compiles and runs BASIC code in Minecraft

A coder successfully runs the BASIC programming language inside the world of Minecraft, all in real-time.

Published Tue, Jan 19 2016 12:07 PM CST   |   Updated Tue, Nov 3 2020 12:02 PM CST

The smash indie hit Minecraft is more than just a game: it's a learning tool that's been used to teach Japanese and JavaScript code, but how about writing and executing programs while in-game? Yeah, that's possible, too.

Minecraft modder SethBling has built an interpreter in the BASIC programming language, which essentially lets gamers compile and run scripts while in-game. So you're using Minecraft's voxel world to make and run small, simple little programs. Users can do a variety of nifty things with SethBling's BASIC interpreter, including solving everyday calculations or counting prime numbers to infinity.

For a more practical solution, users can write simple scripts to programming automated mining turtles--basically little bots--to do various tasks. These mining turtles can dig holes and collect materials all day while you're AFK, making for a nifty little addition that can save you quite a bit of time.

Of course, the BASIC commands are a bit tricky and require some know-how to use. The game's low-res voxel-based world also resists this kind of computational input: thanks to Minecraft's 20hz clock, you can never perform more than 20 commands a second, making some scripts rather slow.

Even still, it's just amazing to see someone write and execute programs within a game like Minecraft, and we can only guess what these talented coders will turn up next.

Gamer compiles and runs BASIC code in Minecraft 5 |

Derek joined the TweakTown team in 2015 and has since reviewed and played 1000s of hours of new games. Derek is absorbed with the intersection of technology and gaming, and is always looking forward to new advancements. With over six years in games journalism under his belt, Derek aims to further engage the gaming sector while taking a peek under the tech that powers it. He hopes to one day explore the stars in No Man's Sky with the magic of VR.

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