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CategoryGame CategoryGame | CategoryGameSimulation

Translation(s): English - Français


Recently a new game is available in the Debian repositories: Minetest (minetest - c55) under GPL v2 (or later) license.



Minetest is inspired by the game Minecraft but unlike the latter, it is developed in C++. It currently has two modes:

  • Survival: with a inventory and the possibility of building.
  • Creative: all with unlimited blocks

Note that the package also includes a server version.



With the package in the repositories, nothing is simpler:

   1 aptitude install minetest

Compiling sources

Because it is a game in constant development, the version in the repository will not be the latest. But fortunately it is possible to get the latest sources and to compile.

  • Start by installing the dependencies:
       1 aptitude install build-essential cmake libbz2-dev libirrlicht-dev libpng12-dev libjpeg8 libxxf86vm-dev libgl1-mesa-dev libsqlite3-dev
  • Get the latest archive:
       1 wget https://github.com/minetest/minetest/tarball/master -O master.tar.gz
       2 tar xf master.tar.gz
       3 rm -f master.tar.gz
       4 cd celeron55-minetest-*
  • Compile:
       1 cmake . -DRUN_IN_PLACE=1
       2 make -j2
  • Launch the game :
       1 cd bin
       2 ./minetest

For problems or more compiler options, see readme.


To start the game, just run Applications/Games/Minetest (Gnome) or run:

   1 minetest


The location of the configuration files is ~/.minetest (created during the first start of the game).

The configuration file contains minetest.conf player preferences (key, name, server address, ...), it is possible to change these settings in the file or directly from the game.

More details on the page on the minetest wiki.


At the moment only textures are customizable. We can find more on the official forum. To apply a new texture, you must modify the configuration file and add the following variable:

   1 texture_path = /path/to/textures


Minetest also offers a server version to experience the immense number of maps. To start, run in a shell:

   1 minetestserver

For a web server, it is necessary that the specified port (30000 UDP by default) is open on the internet box/gateway.


The file ~/.minetest/world/auth.txt defines the privileges of each player.

List of privileges:

  • Build - build/dig
  • Teleport - allow command /#teleport to teleport
  • Settime - authorize the /#time command to set the time
  • Privs - allow commands /#grant and /#revoke to add and remove privileges
  • Shout - to talk with other players.

The file looks like this:

   1 test::build,shout

The file auth.txt is frequently written by the server and also during shutdown. It is better to edit when the server is down or use the commands /#grant and /#revoke privileges to change players.

It is also possible to define the default privileges by modifying the configuration file with the parameter:

   1 default_privs = build, shout


The available in-game commands are:

  • /#status - Get the status of the server: roster, message of the day.

  • /#privs - View privileges.

  • /#privs <player> - See privileges 'player'. Requires privilege 'privs'.

  • /#grant <player> <priv> - Leave a privilege to 'player'. Requires privilege 'privs'.

  • /#revoke <player> <priv> - Remove a privilege to 'player'. Requires privilege 'privs'.

  • /#time <time> - Set the time of day. 0 and 24000 correspond to midnight, 12000 and 5000 at noon at dawn. (time * 1000) . Requires privilege 'time'.

  • /#shutdown - Turn off the server.

  • /#setting <name> = <value> - Adds or replaces a parameter in the configuration file. The parameter can not be applied properly before restarting the server.

  • /#teleport <x>,<y>,<z> - Teleport to the indicated position. Requires privilege 'teleport'.


Given the current video game right now, it's pretty easy to compare Minetest to Minecraft. Without going in to details (which are available on the wiki/blog/forum of Minetest), we can try to include the advantages and disadvantages of current Minetest:

  • Benefits:
    • GPL V2 License
    • C++ language
    • Literally huge Map
    • Multi-platform
  • Cons:
    • Community fairly small (for now!)
    • No sound yet

See also

CategoryGame | CategoryGameSimulation