Hardcore Ender Expansion 2 has been in the works for a while — the first design document entry is from July 2015 — but proper development only started in March 2018. It is now roughly two years later, and although I've been posting an occasional screenshot on my Twitter, it is time to give the sneak peeks more structure. Here's the plan!
Every other Sunday, I will be posting a preview — short introduction to one or more features, with screenshots or animations — to my Patreon page.
If you are a patron, you will get early access to all previews for $1/month. If you cannot or do not want to donate, don't worry! All previews will become public 14 days after their publication.
The first preview introduces the new End dimension, you can read about it below. The second preview, which showcases 2 items found in the new Stronghold, is available now for patrons and will be made public in 14 days.
Preview - The End Dimension
The very first idea about the direction of HEE 2 was about the dimension itself. I wanted to solve the old issue of visiting the End in multiplayer for the first time, only to find the place utterly ravaged (especially with the Ender Dragon's block destroying ability).
I wrote down many of the early ideas on an internet-less vacation — the same week when Mojang announced Minecraft 1.9 and its new End dimension to the world. Coming home to the news felt pretty funny.
HEE 1 added a Temple Caller — an item that reset the End dimension, and occasionally broke servers. Not making that mistake again. Vanilla now lets you respawn just the Dragon and venture out from the main island. Decent solution, but the HEE Dragon might not leave much of the main island left for others.
After coming up with a few options, I landed on a system I call Sub-World Grid. The dimension is made of an infinite amount of small worlds – territories – connected by portals, similar to the one leading into the End itself. The twist is – every territory is fully surrounded by deadly void. Sorry to say, but the days of building Cobblestone bridges are over.
If you want to go sightseeing in the End, you need Portal Tokens. You will come across these in boss battles, secret passages, or just in the wild.
Want an entire territory to yourself? Hide the Token away from your nosy friends. Need help with a boss? Line up your friends in front of an activated portal, and tell them you found cool loot inside.
Unlike Mystcraft's completely random worlds, HEE 2 territories follow a set path, with occasional branching and optional areas. Every territory has a name, theme, and purpose in the overall progression system.
The most important change though, is that the End is no longer an end-game dimension – there be no dragons in the first territory. In fact, the new End is a good place to find some decent loot very early on, as long as you don't arrive completely unprepared. Go ahead, jump in!