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I see a lot of questions which (implicitly or explicitly) are about making Minecraft (Infiniminer, Ace of Spades, Cube World, whatever) style games — to be more specific, let's say games where the game mechanics include modifying a voxel terrain. I am personally interested in the topic, so I would like there to be a tag for such questions.

What should the name of such a tag be?

I figure is inappropriate since the questions are not about Minecraft per se; I mention Minecraft merely as the most notable example of such games (and likely the cause of people being interested in the topic). Furthermore, Minecraft is a trademark which we should not use generically, and some might be annoyed by effectively lumping all such games to “Minecraft clones”.

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    \$\begingroup\$ Can't we just ban every "minecraft clone" question? I'm not serious, but the number of these things (not just here) is really absurd. Somedays it makes me wish Minecraft had never come into being, just to not have to deal with, "I'm trying to draw a bunch of cubes" questions. \$\endgroup\$ – Nicol Bolas Apr 18 '12 at 0:27
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The existing tag seems to be mostly used this way, and it seems like a reasonable tag. The question is then whether we wish to avoid conflating “chunky voxels” like Minecraft with small detail-less ones like Voxatron.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ As far as I'm concerned, what you're looking for is the minecraft tag. It's the most succinct way of expressing what you're looking for (large open worlds made up of boxes that are procedurally generated) without getting too nitpicky about what the tag actually is. \$\endgroup\$ – Tetrad Apr 15 '12 at 16:58
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    \$\begingroup\$ @Tetrad: I don't want to suggest the oversimplification of “everything here is a Minecraft clone”, which I'm sure will annoy some people — and using someone's trademark generically isn't especially great either. \$\endgroup\$ – Kevin Reid Apr 15 '12 at 17:02
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Tetrad I don't really agree since, well, Minecraft didn't invent the genre (although it clearly popularized it.) I would keep minecraft, but for Minecraft-related questions (plugins and such, which we seem to get a lot.) \$\endgroup\$ – kaoD Apr 15 '12 at 17:04
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    \$\begingroup\$ While I don't necessarily disagree with those points, you have to remember that if a random person off the street (who is somewhat versed in game development) wants to come in and ask a question about these types of topics, and can't find an appropriate tag because it isn't obvious enough, then the tag isn't very useful. I don't think it's worth getting too pedantic over the outcome of folksonomy en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Folksonomy The only place to really crack down is when tags are overused/overloaded (within the context of the community) or are "meta" tags. \$\endgroup\$ – Tetrad Apr 15 '12 at 17:14
  • \$\begingroup\$ That said if you want to suggest synonyms for the existing minecraft tag, or retag some minecraft-specific tags to something like minecraft-mods, feel free. \$\endgroup\$ – Tetrad Apr 15 '12 at 17:17
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    \$\begingroup\$ I notice now that the tag wiki for voxels already mentions games-like-Minecraft. I'm thinking that pretty much settles my issue — there is no reason to take any action (other than maybe adding the tag where applicable). \$\endgroup\$ – Kevin Reid Apr 15 '12 at 21:12
  • \$\begingroup\$ The problem is just that Minecraft does not use voxels. Unlike Minecraft blocks a voxel is not textured. Apart from that the actual technological problems of voxel engines are vastly different from those of a Minecraft-clone. I know that this is a really common misconception, but does that really mean that we should encourage its continued use? \$\endgroup\$ – aaaaaaaaaaaa May 4 '12 at 10:09
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Previous discussion: In The “these tags are useless” thread, Jonathan Dickinson suggested “ or ”, in the context of eliminating entirely.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ Arising because minecraft would have to do with modding Minecraft and not actually a game that looks like it (I didn't really want to eliminate it, I think I suggested renaming it to minecraft-mod; or neglected/forgot to suggest that). \$\endgroup\$ – Jonathan Dickinson Apr 17 '12 at 13:15
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    \$\begingroup\$ Boxel actually sounds quite nice. \$\endgroup\$ – Derek Apr 19 '12 at 17:24
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I don't see that there's a common phrase used for this. Browsing through the "minecraft" tag gives two common questions: "how do I generate/render a voxel landscape," and "how do I do this minecraft mod?" With a few questions of the sort "Minecraft has this game mechanic, how do I clone it?"

I think it'd be useful to have a tag to refer to a voxel landscape, ie to distinguish between sparse voxels (eg Qubicle models) and full landscapes (eg Minecraft). Yet "voxel-terrain" and "voxel-landscape" seem like too many syllables to me, especially for the audience that typically asks these questions.

I think "minecraft" is still a useful tag, in that sometimes people really do mean "like in Minecraft".

I suggest: minecraft-mod, minecraft, and ... uh... boxworld? And leave voxel to sparse-voxel and cellular-automata questions.

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