Minecraft is a game open to—and enjoyed by—individuals of all ages around the globe. Offering infinite worlds, adventures, weather, and landscapes to explore, Minecraft was created by Swedish designer Markus Persson and released in 2009. Maintained by Mojang AB and serving as part of Microsoft Studios, Minecraft is a first-person game based on blocks, and continued manipulation of an infinite number of structures. While the original intent was not to create a ‘video game giant,’ undeniably that has been the result.
Recently, one of the leaders in inkjet printers and cutting systems, Mimaki Europe, partnered with both Minecraft and the administration of the government in France to launch a competition centered around both social and environmental awareness for the younger generations. ‘Villes et Territoires de demain’ was the name of the competition, prompted as the Mimaki team realized how many younger users and gamers are involved in Minecraft, navigating the challenges of the platform’s intense landscape, along with expressing interest in using new technology like 3D printing.
There were over 1200 entries for ‘Villes et Territoires de demain,’ and some were even as young as 13 years old:
“Mimaki’s 3DUJ-553 full-colour 3D printer enabled the winning design to be brought to life in vivid detail in an intricate 3D printed model gifted to the victor this October, marking a year since the competition originally began,” explains the Mimaki team in a recent press release sent to 3DPrint.com.
Judges hailed from Microsoft, IGN, and also included a variety of professionals such as architects, social media influencers, and even French government officials from ‘Ministère de la Cohésion des Territoires et des Relations avec les Collectivités Territoriales.’
Those entering the contest were asked to design original solutions for a range of critical social and environmental problems, with ‘entry criteria’ for each virtual town including:
- Encouragement of biodiversity
- Optimization of water and energy management
- Refining quality of life
- Fighting climate change
Entrants in the contest were also asked to publish summaries of their work on YouTube, with their presentation playing a part in the judges’ decision-making process.
“As a company which has long been committed to preserving the environment and finding solutions for greener products, this competition was an absolute honour to be a part of,” said Thierry Lim, Area Sales Manager, Mimaki. “It has been very inspiring to see so many conscientious and visionary young people engaging with technology to explore environmental solutions and imagine living spaces with sustainability at the core.
“To be able to push technology even further and actually bring the participants’ designs to life in front of their eyes is a real privilege – and that is entirely down to the capabilities of the 3DUJ-553. With these young people already imagining the kinds of innovations which might shape their futures, it is exciting to be able to share with them the cutting-edge advances in 3D printing technology and provide an insight into the immeasurable possibilities that it might hold for them in years to come.”
While Louis Varin, 16, was the overall winner, there were nine in total, rewarded in the following categories:
- Young individuals
- Young teams
- Adult and professional teams
- Educational projects
- Audience prize
- Special jury prize
“This competition was about giving people the opportunity to think about our society’s challenges,” said Agnès Petit, Chef de projet digital, Ministère de la Cohésion des territoires. “Part of the key to its success has been the fact that Minecraft is a fun platform which is widely enjoyed, particularly by young people, and it has provided an engaging way for them to share their visions about the future of their cities.”
The Mimaki team went to great lengths to fabricate a final model of the winning virtual map set as part of the grand prize—dedicating over 19 hours to translating the design in full-color detail. According to Mimaki, the 3DUJ-553 allows for even the most intricate elements of the design, like wind turbines in a virtual town, to be replicated with true accuracy. In October, Louis Varin, was presented with Mimaki’s 3D printed model as part of his grand prize.
Find out more about Mimaki here.
Over the years, 3D printing has been connected with Minecraft, from virtual reality to holiday hoopla, encouraging kids to learn more about coding, and plenty more. What do you think of this news? Let us know your thoughts! Join the discussion of this and other 3D printing topics at 3DPrintBoard.com.
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