So, this might be a kind of blog I do every so often-- one that is more like a retrospective of a fandom/thing I liked a lot before but don't keep up with now... I love all the fandoms I used to be into, I still hold a lot of love for the time I had and sometimes my thoughts about them are triggered again. This is one of those times.

Minecraft is.... timeless, it seems. And alongside the game itself being timeless? It seems Minecraft Youtubers are also timeless. Many are likely familiar with the popularity of a group like Dream SMP.... and perhaps all the discourse surrounding it and its members. I'm not going to focus on that though- what I mean to bring is that its so so weird... but kind of nice? To see the rise of 'minecraft SMP' groups after having spent some of my most involved fandom years watching what was a SMP (but no one called them SMPs back then nor did they treat them with more formal RP like many are now).

Back in the day (2010) I was obviously watching youtube quite a lot. On my first gen ipod touch. Around 2012-2013 I started watching minecraft youtubers more and more and eventually stumbled across a group called Mindcrack. I believe I started watching because of the “prank wars” series they had gotten to on the server, and VinetageBeef was one of the first ones I watched. Or, it was “Team Canada” (featuring pauseunpause, vintagebeef, and ethoslab) I know for a fact, as they had numerous videos together. From then on, I was watching them all the time... My favorite members to watch were vintagebeef, bdoubleo100, and kurtjmac but I got especially into Bdubs and his 'B Team' shenanigans with GenerikB in the later seasons. Alongside their multiplayer server stuff, I fell hard for the UHC series when Kurtjmac and Zisteau teamed up for 'Team Single Malt Scotch'. If youre aware of my past aliases... that was one of them, for this exact reason. At this point in time I was watching them as my main minecraft youtubers, but I used to watch a few people like AntVenom, Uberhaxornova, Yogscast, and Captain Sparkles before I fell head first into Mindcrack.

Its funny how long ago this was now... ten years? Crazy. But the fact that they just kinda... faded into obscurity and people act like its a new thing for 13 year olds to ship dudes playing games and draw fan art, etc. is funny to me as someone who was actively doing this at age 13 as well. I will be the first to fully admit I did the same thing when I watched Mindcrack. Yes I was drawing them, shipping them, and writing fan fiction of them. I can admit to that “cringe” as it was ten years ago... I think no matter how much you try to tell 13 years olds to not do that, the thing will return in some new wave, and it'll happen all over again. You just can't stop fate, I guess? Are we bound to make minecraft RPF fan fics every ten years? Anyways.

I have a lot of nostalgia for the Mindcrack group and I guess its still around, technically. But I recall starting to fall out of it towards... I think the middle or end of season 4? I just remember the reset of the server after a lot of the big B team stuff had happened, and things started to slow down a bit. Up to that point the server had lots of random little things going on that i enjoyed following and I just dont recall it as much later in. The thing that was fun looking back at these videos was there wasn't really any deep planning for any of this and the “role play” that occurred was very on the spot. Most players were minding their own business and just playing as normal, but if RP came up theyd indulge. The B Team was one of those strong RP bits, and when they started the Death Games within the server, that also had loads of fun moments with more tension than usual. I always loved seeing that because it was all so fun and natural- it was something I watched and often thought “I want to be in a server like that”.

The community was also a big part of keeping me here. I mentioned i made fan fiction, fan art, etc. My place of activity was tumblr, and for something like Mindcrack, the fandom was incredibly tiny on tumblr. It made it into a nice, homey little place where that kind of content was easily acceptable. I made all kinds of connections in my years on tumblr with that fandom and i still look at it fondly after all this time.

As far as I am aware the server is still going, but I have no idea who makes videos actively anymore and most of the guys I watched either moved on to different games or joined another server called Hermitcraft (which i still havent watched to this day). But I didn't stop with Mindcrack, actually. As my interest in the server was shifting I was aware of a public game focused minecraft server that Mindcrack had (PlayMindcrack)... While playing a lot of Dwarves VS Zombies, they opened up a roleplay game within it called Lords of Minecraft. I got quite involved in it, as I loved watching the videos and seeing the roleplay from the mindcrack members. But something...happened, there was a falling out between the creator of the game (Rob) and the owner of Mindcrack (Guude) and to be honest- I have no idea what it was anymore and I have no drive to dig up negative videos describing the fallout... I know it was some kind of issue with rights/permissions and ownership of his games on the server, i think. This was kind of the moment I drifted from Mindcrack because alongside the wavering videos from people I liked, that situation alone soured my impression of Guude enough to not want to watch mindcrack as much. It didn't matter when most of the people I liked did other things anyways, and so from there I moved on to.... Buffalo Wizards, the group of people playing Lord of Minecraft.

I wrote another blog a while ago about Yotube role play and LoM certainly comes up on that blog too. It was a public minecraft server with a system for players to RP as kingdom peasants while the content creators RPed as Lords who owned the land. It was certainly one of my favorite minecraft youtube series, as it was basically constant roleplaying... while also involving the viewers if they were on the server. That was the part that kept me going- I jumped on that server and was eager to get involved. Admittedly I do feel like I was chasing the attention of the youtubers I was fond of buuut I wasn't annoying about it nor did I have a bad time just because I didn't get to see them. I mostly just hoped to be apart of something bigger, and any time the Lords were on it wasn't just exciting but also anxiety inducing! Because of the RP, they'd often mess around and kill people for whatever reasons they pleased, and with the perma death system it actually created a lot fo tension. Even if you wanted to see what they were up to, you risked the RP aspect of potentially being killed or jailed by them. For a good while I was involved in the Dwarven District, running a hospital next to the city hall plot. While I may not have been on any video directly interacting with the youtubers, there were loads of fun and tense moments I remember playing through with random members and the stress added in dying made it all the more fun. Sadly, the server fizzled out in time and while I kept watching the members for their DnD RPG streams, I will always carry lots of memories from LoM itself. It was truly a unique minecraft series with creators who really cared about the community part of it.

Ah well, those memories are still soft and nice in my head... It is weird to realize it started ten years ago. I was reminded of them recently due to the fact that some of those people I watched (Bdubs specifically) are in some new minecraft SMP, and it was such a weird feeling to get on tumblr and see a text post about bdubs that had a whopping 3k notes... Mindcrack was never that popular on a place like tumblr, I couldn't even dream it! And now people are back to shipping these dudes, making headcanons, writing fics... about the guy I watched ten years ago. Wild. (also, this isn't to say RPF is ok, mostly when i did it at age 13... i would not touch RPF anything with a ten foot pole now) This whole resurgence, particularly with various youtubers I used to watch ten years ago, keeps making me think “should I give them a watch?”. I think I hesitate after the sour impressions left by the massive DSMP fanbase and how it quickly gave minecraft youtube a "cringe" impression... But I was cringe in the past, its just that no one cared or noticed because fandoms were so tiny compared to now. While there may be more specific reasons to dislike a group like Dream's, minecraft youtube as a whole isn't... bad. If anything its been one of my favorite kinds of gamers to watch. Its just people playing minecraft! People my age watched them a decade ago so why should my impression change when there's still good guys out there? So maybe I will see what these guys are up to again, it might be nice. Its been at least 7 years since I watched them... And nostalgia is hitting me hard for some reason after all this time. It makes me kinda happy at least, to still see these people I watched going strong.