13 December, 2022
Minecraft existed long before the metaverse was the preferred destination for tech companies and newlyweds. It started as a videogame about avoiding explosions from hissing cactus creatures. It became the blank canvas on a platform where millions of people create and upload their content and generate trillions of views. YouTube today celebrated a record-breaking trillionth view in collaboration with Minecraft developer Mojang. Below is a snapshot of YouTube's unique and transformative history.
Minecraft's chief storyteller Lydia Winters credits the game's trillion views and respect for the many ways Minecraft players tell their stories to Minecraft.
She tells The Verge that there are people who are on an adventure, people who build, and people who play together. All of these ways of playing are important to her. Her job as Minecraft's chief storyteller is to create and maintain a world that players love. This has been a key factor in the game's popularity.
She explains that YouTube videos are a great way to tell stories and Minecraft has been so successful on YouTube. “So now that Minecraft is available, you can tell any story in a Minecraft world. That's why so many people are creating Minecraft content.
According to the numbers, Minecraft's YouTube channel has more than 35,000 creators representing over 150 countries. YouTube's content ranges from simple role-playing videos called “Let's Plays”, to videos that don't even feature any Minecraft gameplay at all.
Earnest Pettie is the YouTube culture and trends insights leader. He keeps track of all the crazy and wonderful ways that Minecraft users use the site. He is fascinated by a particular creator who uses the Minecraft aesthetic, and is well-known within the Minecraft community even though he has never played the game.
Petite says that animation is one of the most popular trends in Minecraft. It can be made with Minecraft or derived from the Minecraft aesthetic. “Jake Fellman is a YouTube creator who creates shorts. He has created over 100 Minecraft-inspired shorts, which are actually computer animation. He is one of the most popular Minecraft creators this year.
Fellman's videos feature 15-second bursts hyper-realistic, “What If Minecraft Graphics were rendered with Unreal Engine 5” shorts. They feature cute interactions between monsters and sheep and have over 1,000,000 views each.
YouTube provides a fascinating breakdown of YouTube's history over the past 11 years. It includes stats, graphs, and facts about how YouTube was able to reach 1 trillion views.
It's fascinating to see how Minecraft videos evolve over time and fade in popularity. The multi-million views hits for Minecraft in its early years were music videos parodies by Minecraft household names like CaptainSparklez. Dream, who recently won the Game Award for content creators of the year, is now the top-rated Minecraft player with his Minecraft manhunt series. This shows his friends trying to stop Dream's progress.
Minecraft is the most-watched YouTube video ever. It was viewed over 200 billion times in 2020. Second place, which was curiously Roblox (another sandbox-style video game), earned less than half of that. Minecraft's natural beauty is a major reason for its seemingly untouchable popularity. It's a vast open space that allows for endless creation and iteration. This is something no other video game can claim. Pettie also mentions the community as another reason.
He says, “One trillion views isn't possible without the creative ingenuity and all the creators that have uploaded Minecraft videos over time.”