hueCraft – A Minecraft Mod for Philips hue

Bring the colours of Minecraft to life.

Minecraft is the most popular (and addictive) game in history. I for one have spent countless hours saying… “just one more block…”! Hardly serious stuff, but we are all allowed our guilty pleasures in life, aren’t we?

In this blog post I am going to show you how you can add another dimension to your Minecraft experience – dynamic, colourful lighting that changes as you make your way through the Minecraft world (with a few other surprises that I won't spoil for you). To do this, we will use the Philips hue lighting system along with a few tweaks to Minecraft.

I am not for a moment suggesting you buy Philips hue just for Minecraft - after all… hue is not cheap. However, I have been living with hue now for about two months – and I must say… long after the price is forgotten I am finding hue just keeps on giving. There are so many things you can do with hue… I’m hooked. When I find some time (in-between Minecraft sessions) I will delve into some of the more serious uses for hue in other blog posts, but for the moment, it’s time to have some fun.

Watch the video below and then we’ll get started…

Video used with permission – hueCraft_mod.

hueCraft - What you’ll need…

  • Philips hue Starter Pack
  • Minecraft
  • Minecraft Forge
  • hueCraft Mod

Instructions...

Follow these instructions exactly and the setup process shouldn’t be too painful (famous last words). Let’s start with the easy part…

Philips hue Starter Pack

If you already own the Philips hue Starter Pack (which includes the hue Bridge), then you're good to go. If not, you can get it here < shameless, I know!

Minecraft

Naturally, you will also need a working version of Minecraft (if you are one of the 326 people in Australia who don't own a copy, you can download it here).

Forge Minecraft Launcher

This is where things get a bit trickier… I will try to make this as painless as possible. We need to add the Forge Minecraft Launcher to Minecraft. Forge makes it easy to add custom Mods (modifications) to Minecraft and turn them on and off. Don't worry, you will still be able to play Minecraft "normally" even after installing Forge.

The hueCraft Mod (discussed below) requires Forge version 1.7.10 - this is not the latest version of Forge – however hueCraft will only work with this version (it will mean that you can only run version 1.7.10 of Minecraft... not a deal breaker for me). So let's download and install Forge...

Windows

For Windows users, click the link below and then click on the Installer-win button under “Download Recommended” in the page that opens.

Apple

Everyone else (including OS X users), click the link below and then click on the Installer button under “Download Recommended”.

Download Minecraft Forge here

Now locate and “double-click” the file you just downloaded - either forge-1.7.10-10.13.4.1448-1.7.10-installer-win.exe (Windows users) or forge-1.7.10-10.13.4.1448-1.7.10-installer.jar (non Windows users).

This will activate the Forge installer. You should be able to just leave all of the defaults and click OK to install.

Forge installer

That’s it… Forge should now be installed.

To make sure all has gone to plan, launch Minecraft. From the Minecraft Launcher, click on the Profile drop down list and select Forge.

Forge profile

Now click on the Play button (Minecraft needs to be run at least once with Forge installed before we proceed to the next step). If all has gone well, you should notice that Minecraft now starts up a little differently…

Forge

Once Minecraft has loaded, you should see something like this…

Minecraft with Forge

Great, we are almost done. While we are still in Minecraft, let’s open the Minecraft folder where the game is stored.

  • Click on "Options".
  • Click on "Resource Packs".
  • Click on "Open resource pack folder".

This is just an easier way to find where your copy of Minecraft lives on your computer… We need to know this in order to copy the hueCraft Mod into the correct location. You can now quit Minecraft.

hueCraft Mod

Download the hueCraft Mod here.

Now we need to copy the hueCraft Mod into the "mods" folder of Minecraft - this is why we opened the resource pack folder of Minecraft earlier – however we are currently in the wrong folder… we need to go up one level to the minecraft folder… we should now see a folder called “mods” – open this folder. Copy the hueCraft Mod we downloaded into this “mods” folder (do not decompress the downloaded hueCraft Mod file – leave it as a .zip file).

We are almost done.

Launch Minecraft again… From the Minecraft Launcher, make sure our Profile is still set to Forge – click the Play button.

Now create a new Minecraft world – I do not recommend loading a world you have already created… because we are possibly using an earlier version of Minecraft (1.7.10), you may lose some items (or worse) if you play a world that was created in a later version of Minecraft. It's up to you, but I learnt this the hard way ;)

Once your new Minecraft world has been created, you should see a message in the top left corner of the screen that says “[hueCraft] found your bridge, please press the pushlink button”. Now we do exactly what it says – push the link button on your hue Bridge.

Minecraft search for Bridge

If all has gone well, you should now see the message “[hueCraft] Connected and ready to go!”

Minecraft found Bridge

We are done (hopefully).

That’s it, we are done. Now when you move through biomes in Minecraft, your hue lights should change colours.

hueCraft is configured by default to use your first three hue Bulbs – this can be changed… simply click on the Mods button when you open Minecraft – then click on hueCraft and Config – here you can change your lights and a few other settings.

It is also possible to change (or add) Minecraft biome colours and saturation - however this is beyond the scope of this blog… Google is your friend!

The hueCraft mod along with some Philips hue lights will also provide some other nice surprises for you as you play Minecraft (just wait until you get your first thunderstorm), but I am not going to reveal all here... much better you discover them yourself.

As always, please leave a comment below if you have enjoyed this blog or if you run into any issues – particularly if you find a mistake in the instructions above.

Enjoy.

All the best,

Brad Arthur.