Seize the Skies

Meafcraft’s build makes a frightening fish even deadlier. Er, great?

For nearly six decades, the Victorian airship – a technological marvel with the simple design of a ship and a balloon – has dominated the skies," reads the description on meafcraft's newest build. But as you can see from the image above, that’s about to change, as that teeny Victorian airship is about to be shot down by a ferociously fishy ship, a modern marvel called The Bounty.

"The Bounty is a build that depicts a tale of conflict between old and new," says meafcraft, with the name of the ship a reference to the six million bounty on the heads of its crew! Six million what though? Dollars? Pounds? Minecoins? Whatever currency it is – even if it’s yen – it’s bad news for the crew (though even the finest fisherman will struggle to catch them in the giant harpoon-shooting lionfish they call home).

"It's a depiction of a pursuit between two airships,” explains meafcraft “and how old technology, while once considered new and superior, will eventually become outdated and ultimately obsolete." The smaller airship represents the airships of the Victorian era, made with wood and canvas, and The Bounty is the newer, more powerful ship, made with innovative steampunk technology and based, unfortunately, on a real fish.

Yes, even at its normal, non-airship size, the real-world lionfish is a foe worth being afraid of. Not only is it venomous and dangerous to humans, but it also has no natural predators – which means there's nothing that can stop it. Oh goody. "Many places, such as Florida, have even placed substantial bounties on these fish to control them," says meafcraft. "That's how I came up with the project name!"

The first step of building The Bounty was to plan out the scale. Meafcraft made a rough plan using wool blocks to decide on the height, width and length of the build, and then built inside of that frame. The ship itself is largely made out of stained clay and stone bricks to represent metal, with gold and nether bricks as accents, and stained glass wings to give them a transparent look.

"I had initially used white wool," says meafcraft, but upon seeing how much of the build was covered by the wings, he switched to glass, "to expose more of the ship."

There was also the challenge of mixing the organic shape of a fish with the mechanical shape of an airship to think about. "My best plan was to build a physical fish, and then put in the steampunk elements afterwards," says meafcraft. "The most ambitious part of the build was the steampunk implementation of the airship."

Meafcraft wanted something that was designed to look like a fish, but would be instantly recognisable as an airship, and that meant integrating industrial details into the fish. Look carefully, and you'll see that the fins are the ship's sails, the mouth and eyes are windows, and the tongue is actually a harpoon gun. And if you are looking at the tongue, don’t forget to DUCK.

"I am not naturally an organics builder," meafcraft admits. "It took a lot of complex outlining and planning to get a good look." The interior might look complicated, but for meafcraft, this was much simpler than the exterior. "I have experience with building and planning interiors, but for an airship designed from a fish? It sure took some thought!"

The end product is well worth it, though, and meafcraft agrees: "it's probably one of my best!"

The Bounty might look terrifying, but it was made with players in mind. "I designed this map for people to explore," says meafcraft, "and I hope players can perhaps create a narrative for themselves!" So if you want to explore the inside of a deadly fish today (who wouldn’t?) you can check out The Bounty on Planet Minecraft. On a completely unrelated topic, accepts no legal responsibility for the wellbeing of its readers.

Have fun!

Renders by Squity, Omegafox, squarishblinkie, and iskillia

Written By
Kate Gray