As you may be aware, Minecraft Legends is a spin-off strategy game that looks and feels like the original blocky game we all know and love. However, despite its stunning beauty and unusual gameplay, the game could have done better, with a significant drop in player base. As a result, Mojang has chosen to cancel Minecraft Legends just nine months after its launch. So, what went wrong? Why was the game that was supposed to make you feel like a hero defending the Overworld from piglins so poorly received? That is precisely what we shall address today. With that stated, let’s examine why Minecraft Legends failed.
Top Reasons Why Minecraft Legends Failed
1. Repetitive & Shallow Gameplay
The first and most crucial reason Minecraft Legends failed to attract an audience was the mediocre, repetitive gaming experience. The game begins with a fun and exciting introduction. Your goal is to protect a village from a pigling attack. After that, you’ll need to knock down a modest piglin outpost. Then, a more difficult combat begins, which most players like. However, the entire process keeps repeating itself. To avoid such conflicts, you need to go to other places.
Same Cause, Same Fight Experience
However, your goal remains constant throughout time. Go to a pigling outpost and destroy the portal. The end. This repetitiveness is exhausting since players enjoy a different adrenaline rush than during the early encounters. Furthermore, the fact that players have just one attack, the slicing sword attack, is somewhat dull. Yes, it’s enticing and fulfilling to fast-dispatch piggins, but not enough to make players want to hang around. The player’s involvement with the enemies invading the Overworld must have depth. Minecraft could have simply included some weapon advancement, enabling players to use crossbows, tridents, and other weapons that currently exist in the Minecraft world.
True Strategy Aspect Missing
Furthermore, the goal of a strategy game should be to carefully analyze the present scenario, devise an appropriate plan, and then effectively execute it. Minecraft Legends does not provide this since all the fights are linear and identical. Therefore, the plan is always the same. If you’ve figured out a technique that works for you, you can easily apply it to all Piglin outpost encounters without making any major adjustments.
This game isn’t like the original Minecraft and is shallow. After defeating the last boss in Minecraft, your game experience grows to include new possibilities. However, the game ends in Legends when you defeat the last boss. Depending on the complexity, the campaign or solo mode lasts around 8-16 hours. After that, there are no more pigling outposts to destroy, no new exciting tasks to face, and no new game elements to experiment with. The only option left is the multiplayer mode, which is a letdown in and of itself, but we’ll get into that later.
2. No Consequences for a Defeat
Aside from penetrating pigling strongholds and destroying their portals, the hero must safeguard the Overworld species from malevolent Nether piggies. These attacks are aimed against villages, and it is up to you to defend them. However, if you cannot defeat the piglins, do not worry. Nothing major will occur. There is no consequence for defeat. This is alright in certain games, but not in Minecraft Legends.
The consequences should make you want to protect a village. You should realize that if you lose, you will lose something priceless or may not get something useful, motivating you to give your all in a struggle. Currently, you may walk away from a village attack in the game. There is no feeling of urgency, which does not make you feel like a hero.
3. No Active Player Participation
Minecraft Legends enables you to build an army of golems, creepers, and other creatures and order them to go to a specified spot or attack a construction. Fighting for you, your army must destroy pigling portals and towers. Thus, it is in your best interest to improve them. However, after you’ve built a powerful army, you’re done playing the game. You may hang about and wait for your golems to defeat the pigling bases or the ultimate monster.
This lessens the significance of the player’s presence, which is surely not a pleasant experience. Regarding significant activities, the player should be the primary executioner, with all other friendly mobs serving as optional backup. However, Minecraft Legends is different. As a result, the game gradually grows uninteresting over time, and players eventually quit.
4. Directionless Multiplayer Mode
Before its launch in April 2023, Minecraft Legends’ PvP multiplayer mode received a lot of interest. This mode aims to destroy the opponent team’s base while defending your own. However, just like the campaign, the fights rapidly grew repetitive. The multiplayer mode should have been more exciting due to the one easy and dull attack and the same goal of destroying the other player’s base with golems and creepers.
The game lacked a competitive mechanism like scoreboards and a communication system. You and your buddy might blindly attack one other’s bases in the game without using a communication channel like a chat or proximity voice. There was also no support for local multiplayer, which is included in later Minecraft games. The online ‘Versus Mode’ was fairly shallow, which was a huge disappointment, given how short and mediocre the campaign mode was.
5. Mojang’s Negligence
Minecraft Legends was a huge hit initially, selling over three million copies in just two weeks. However, the game’s player base quickly dwindled. Only one week after launch, 80% of active players had quit, and by two weeks, 92% of the active player population had left. And now, over nine months later, 99.9% of players have quit playing the game. As of December 2023, an average of 30 players were playing Minecraft Legends.
Mojang, the game firm that produced Minecraft and its spin-off games like Minecraft Legends, should have acted quickly after seeing the rapid degradation and lack of interest in their game. Unfortunately, they didn’t. The game had just a few updates after its initial release, and they needed to concentrate on addressing the problems in the main gameplay mechanics. Furthermore, the game was released with certain bothersome problems and glitches that turned players off from the start. Not only that, but the first update to the game was late (August 2023), so players had already quit by then.
The surviving players anxiously awaited fresh news and updates for Minecraft Legends, which were supposed to be discussed at Minecraft Live 2023. However, Mojang merely spoke about this game for 3 minutes and 30 seconds out of a 50-minute event, noting nothing particularly exciting. This effectively shattered players’ interest even more. While the game was steadily dying (or was already dead, based on the player chart above), Mojang did not engage with players or attempt to prevent them from abandoning it entirely.
Furthermore, a stream with two Minecraft Legends devs occurred lately. They spoke about the game for almost an hour. However, has anybody ever heard of this stream? Or did anybody join the stream? Well, not really. There was only indication that the event was going place once it had ended. Due to its fast failure, Mojang began handling Legends as if it did not exist. However, we must give credit where it is due. Mojang needed help to develop this RTS game; they had assistance from another game company named BlackBird Interactive (BBI). BBI performed a considerably better job of communicating with players. They published frequent community updates informing people about upcoming changes and news. However, it should have been Mojang’s responsibility, which they may not have taken seriously.
6. Too Expensive
Finally, as the title suggests, one of the most commonly cited reasons for bad reviews for Minecraft Legends across platforms is its excessive pricing. This game costs $40, but the original Minecraft game is $30. When you compare these two games, you’ll see that Minecraft is indefinitely replayable, gives you much more creative flexibility, and is more fun overall. Legends has a brief single campaign and a somewhat shallow multiplayer mode. Because of this, Minecraft Legends is not worth the $40 asking price. To summarize, Minecraft Legends failed to deliver on its great promises due to poor implementation, unfair pricing, uninspired gameplay, and poor communication from the creators. This game was heavily advertised, and it’s frustrating for a die-hard MC fan like me to watch it fail so miserably.
We were optimistic about it, but Mojang has confirmed that Minecraft Legends would no longer get updates. What are your thoughts on the game expiring after only nine months? Did you play Minecraft Legends when it was first released? What other reasons did Minecraft Legends fail so badly? Please leave a remark below.