news\ Oct 11, 2011 at 10:08 am

Minecraft: The End, Ender Dragons, and Goop Portal All Explained


It's all beginning to make sense...I think. Solving Notch's hints is like solving a Rubik's Cube, it just seems like a bunch of nonsense. But with a little over a month left before the official release of Minecraft, all of Notch's tweets, photos, hints, and leaked details may finally be coming together. I've spent countless hours looking through screenshots and videos, and recent tweets by Notch in an attempt to figure out just what the heck is going on. After hours of sorting through it all, I may have reached a conclusion for what fans can expect in the November release of Minecraft. To better convey these thoughts, I have created a list of events to help you better understand Notch's logic. See if you can keep up.

October 5: Notch announces him and Jens are working on “something epic”. Along with this announcement, came the following screenshot:

What the hell are we looking at? "As usual, it doesn't work too great in screenshots,” said Notch. He later Tweeted,"Well, that effect ended up being a LOT of work for something you will almost never see, and it doesn't even stand out that much. ;D"

Ok, so nobody really knew what Notch was talking about. We just brushed it off, but it was still in the back of our mind.

October 6, morning: Minecraft Update 1.9 Pre-Release Version 3 was released, bringing players item enchantments, baby animals, and a basic potion brewing system. While it definitely added a lot to Minecraft, I don't think anything “epic” was introduced. At least something unexpected.

October 6, afternoon: Shortly after the pre-release of 1.9 Version 3, Notch took to Twitter again. Apparently fans encountered “weird black stuff in 1.9 pre 3”. Notch retweeted a fan's YouTube video where the player encounters a “goo portal” of some sort. The video (seen below) , “Minecraft Goop? 1.9 PR3”, shows a player investigating this “weird black stuff”. Some dismissed it as a bug in the game, some said it resembled the bottom of the world, others just congratulated YouTube user Fetter22 for getting “Notch'd”.

However, if you look closely at the “goop”. Now look at the screenshot above. Does it look familiar? Could that be what was in the hole in the image that Notch tweeted a day earlier? It sure does look the same. But what is that goop/portal?

October 7: Notch announces dragons are coming to Minecraft. This announcement came as a bit of a shock, especially considering the lawsuit going on between Bethesda/Zenimax and Mojang over the “Scrolls” trademark. While dragons have been brought up in previous Minecraft plans, everyone wrote this off as Notch being Notch and trying to stick it to Bethesda. Everyone, including myself, figured he was releasing this simply to piss Bethesda off by creating something so heavily focused on in the upcoming Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim.

This is where things get interesting. When I saw this my eye was so drawn to the new dragon model. I didn't even notice the endermen standing around the big obelisk-like pillars. Notice the plain green ground texture and black sky. I thought it was simply the modeling mode Notch uses for Minecraft. Silly did I miss this...? Are you starting to figure it out yet? If not continue.

October 10, morning: Notch successfully deploys a “surprise”. No one really knows what it was. The surprise is overshadowed by new screenshots of the textured Minecraft dragon, dubbed Ender Dragon. Once again, I looked over something pretty revealing. The word Ender before dragon. Of course I dismissed this as Notch using a play on words with the Endermen.

October 10, afternoon: This is when it all clicked. Notch released a video of the Ender Dragon animated with the words “The End!”. Congratulation, Notch finished the dragon animations. That's what he meant by the end, right? WRONG! Oh, Notch you tricky fellow. If there's one thing I learned it's that each of Notch's tweets are carefully crated and always contain some type of subtle hint. From the original video it was pretty dark and hard to make out what was in it. It wasn't until a lightened version of the video popped up that it all became clear.

In the lightened video you can clearly see the Ender dragon fly overhead. In the background you can also see the Endermen (introduced in Minecraft 1.8) walking around constructing black towers.

Do you get it yet!? Ender Dragons, Endermen, Gooey black portals.....The End!

Notch is creating a new dimension! “The End” dimension, which looks to be the newest place players can adventure into, is home to the Endermen and Ender Dragons. Now that's not to say dragons won't exist in the normal Minecraft world. Notch did show some screenshots of the dragons flying above the normal dimension. So how do players get to this “End” dimension? If you haven't guess by now, it's using those “black goop portals” that were shown in the video. They may not work now, but I bet come the official Minecraft release in November, those portals will lead adventurers to “The End”, where they will encounter Endermen and Ender Dragons.


Keep in mind, none of this is actually confirmed. I could be completely off-base here, as I am with most of my looks into the mind of creative genius Markus “Notch” Persson. Regardless, Notch should have some big plans for Minecraft players come the November launch.

Do you think that “goop portal” actually leads to “The End” or am I just off my rocker?

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