If you love neon, you'll love AutomailED's latest build!
You know, we used to think "cyberpunk" was when you gave your computer a cool mohawk and lots of tattoos. We have since learned that that is not the case, which means we have to figure out what to do with all these tiny leather jackets we bought for our monitors. That'll teach us to look things up, won't it?
It turns out that cyberpunk – at least in the year 2021 – is a genre of fiction that's all about a near future with lots of grungey, half-robotic people with a lot of tattoos who have very strong opinions about pink neon signs. What's even better is that it makes for a very cool aesthetic, with all the glowing lights, huge holograms, and flying cars that usually come with a cyberpunk city.
AutomailED is no stranger to Minecraft.net – we've covered their builds twice before, with their lovely woodland build that tells the story of Red Riding Hood, and their rather cool Interstellar-inspired Moon Destruction build. The AutomailED team, made up of Indonesian pairing, Maggie Go (AKA AutomailED) and Archanee (AKA BlackWooz) have just released their newest build, Cyberpunk City, and guess what? It's just as good as the last two they made. Maybe even better, in fact! No wonder they've been featured here so many times.
But it turns out that BlackWooz and AutomailED didn't actually reciprocate our feelings at first. "To be honest," says AutomailED, "I thought Minecraft wasn't a good game because of the graphics. Please don't feel offended!" Well, we'll try, but these tears seem to have a mind of their own. Sob.
BlackWooz didn't even know what Minecraft was until 2013, apparently – "until my friend asked me to play with him." It might have been a rocky start for both, but what's important is that we're all here now, and we're all friends.
But enough about us! What about that fantastic build? Well, Cyber City itself took four months to build between the two of them, which is made even more impressive by the fact that AutomailED is in her final year of studying architecture at university. Does that mean we could be seeing Minecraft-inspired skyscrapers some time soon?
The difficulty of organising time to build was the team's biggest hurdle. "It's hard to find a day to work together at the same time," says AutomailED. Although they weren't in a hurry with this build in particular, since it wasn't a commission or needed for any particular project, they want to ensure that their work continues to inspire others. "We believe that Minecraft is more than just a game," says AutomailED. "It's a tool with unlimited potential." They found themselves inspired by a quote from Steve Jobs, former CEO of Apple:
“Your work is going to fill a large part of your life, and the only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work. And the only way to do great work is to love what you do.”
With that in mind, they tried to make Cyber City represent more than just a cool, neon look. "Cyber City signifies our hope for humanity," says AutomailED. "2020 was a hard year. A lot of things have happened. But despite that, each of us still have our future." They both also found inspiration in Cyberpunk 2077, a recent game that drew from similar aesthetics. Although neither of them played the game, they "fell in love with the artwork", and wanted to make their own version of what the future might look like.
Unlike a lot of builds that we feature on here, Cyber City doesn't have a specific colour theme – and that's sort of the point. A city is usually a big mess of colours and textures, and the team tried to replicate that by using as many blocks as possible. "The most influential thing is the lights," says AutomailED. "We use various types of glass to make the city look alive and colourful."
It definitely seems like it's paid off – AutomailED says that Cyber City is one of their favourite builds ever. Their next build, in fact, is an "oriental-themed architecture" that's based on a bunch of stuff they had to cut from Cyber City, with the addition of "legendary creatures".
There are a lot of really neat little details in Cyber City's streets, alleys, and train tracks – but we can't see a single computer wearing a leather jacket. Are we sure that's not what cyberpunk is all about?