Do you dig exploring epic fantasy castles, floating asteroid cities, and vast "Lord of the Rings"-style mountain strongholds? Then grab your pickaxe and come with us on a journey into some of the immense creations to be found in Minecraft.
To celebrate the launch of the "Minecraft Construction Handbook" and "Minecraft Combat Handbook" from Egmont, we met up with top Minecraft builders Fyre UK and explored a variety of fantastical lands and real-world communities all rendered from blocks in the hugely popular digging and building game.
Fyre UK is a band of British builders who share their tips in the "Construction" and "Combat" handbooks for building amazing creations -- and defending them against ghasts, creepers, and other Minecraft beasties. Teams of up to 150 players join forces to create giant digital dioramas in Minecraft for the FyreUK YouTube channel, and their incredible creations are shown off in these stunning time-lapse videos -- read on for our favourites.
This giant train station, inspired by the architectural style of the famous Penn Station, was built over three days and includes a huge underground area full of trains pulling in and out, all heading to different destinations across Fyre's Minecraft server.
Built over two days, the Dwarven City is a jaw-droppingly city carved into a hollowed-out mountain, crossed by a suitably gargantuan bridge and packed with incandescent lava-falls. Gandalf would be impressed.
Laenadur: City of Mages
Inspired by "Lord of the Rings", "The Elder Scrolls" and many other fantasy epics, the magical metropolis of Laenadur is a city of magical majesty and arcane districts, complete with details from enormous airships all the way down to floating lanterns.
Red Rock City
Digging into the environment, the spectacular Red Rock City is inspired by real-world locations like Australia's Uluru -- also known as Ayers Rock -- and the city of Petra in Jordan, as seen in the film "Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade".
Ancient Egyptian City
It may have taken the ancient Egyptians years to build the pyramids with an army of slaves, but this Minecraft walled city and palace is no less intricate. It was probably more fun to build, too.
Floating Steampunk City
This floating steampunk city, built over four days, is divided into four islands, each with a different purposes: One is a cathedral and train station, another is a housing district, another is for commerce, and the last district is for leisure and relaxation.
ASTRON : Asteroid Complex
You don't need to stay on the ground to make the most of Minecraft. Astron is a complex network of asteroids grouped around a central, with different purposes for each asteroid. Cosmic stuff!
Block by Block: Kirtipur, Kathmandu
It's not all messing around with blocks -- Fyre and Mojang, the creators of Minecraft, join forces with the United Nations Human Settlements Programme (UN-Habitat), the UN agency promoting sustainable towns and cities, for the Block by Block project. That involves young people planning new public spaces in Minecraft before they're recreated in real life. This is Kirtipur, Kathmandu.
The Land of Akane
The Land of Akane is Fyre's biggest ever build. Inspired by the aesthetics of Japan, the sprawling build includes a city, villages, temples, and even underwater building. It took more than 25 hours to create, and the video consists of a massive 2.8TB of raw footage.