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Gateway to Gateux

Take a wander through TheRed1337’s fairytale world

I’ve never been attacked by a dragon (at time of writing) but I’m starting to think it’s something I’d like to try. Sure, being burnt alive by its flamey breath would probably be painful and my nice face doesn’t really need any dragon teeth in it, thanks – but – when it’s a red-winged beauty like the one in Gateux by TheRed1337, I’d happily lose a little thing like ‘being alive’ for a closer look!

Luckily, I don’t need to, because TheRed1337 – or Adrian, as he’s also known – was happy to answer my questions about his pretty palace, wonderful woodlands and damn-I-wish-I-could-build-something-that-good-dragon.

“I’m a spontaneous builder,” he tells me. “If something comes to my mind, I will always try to recreate it in Minecraft.” In this case, Adrian was inspired by the Walt Disney castle, and ideas just snowballed from there. He started to picture a story of a royal family holding it, using lore to bolster his creation. As he kept fleshing out ideas and making iterations, the fairytale-esque construction became more fierce in its appearance.

“I wanted to achieve the idea that when someone comes to visit my creation, they will see that the royal family is truly powerful enough to tame a dragon and hold a huge fortress for ages!“

It’s this fortress that Adrian is most proud of, but there’s more to this than just his magical stronghold. Personally, I love the composition and placement in the world of Gateux. For me, the village is a beautiful but fragile place, hidden away in the shadow of its colossal, towering counterpart – the castle fortress. The little wooden houses and fishing boats are dwarfed by the gargantuan gateway and stoney façade. The hot air balloon mirrors the spire tops, round and bulbous, but is made starkly puny by comparison.

“That castle was one of my first big creations,” he says. “I spent a lot of time making [it]. I’m least happy with the village part. I wanted to make it better. I think I placed it in the wrong spot, so it became difficult to make it look alright.”

Yet, we haven’t even mentioned the dragon or the golem that serve as the royal palace guards. I mean, imagine living in the shadow of these things! Wait, that’s terrifying. Don’t imagine that. STOP.

Adrian explains that he had some struggles creating these curious creatures. “The biggest problem for me was making organics,” he says. “I’m mainly a structural builder and sometimes I make terrain when [it’s] needed.”

Lucky for him, two members of Adrian’s current build team, Team Visionary, offered their help. “DoriFyah_ made the biggest golem that protects the island,” he tells me, “and iDragolyte made [the] huge dragon that protects the realm.”

All the smaller details that really bring this place to life, though, are the work of Adrian. The ships bobbing in the water and the small, fairytale houses make this magical map feel real, inhabited and pleasantly lived-in – and they’re all made by his hand.

“In my opinion,” says Adrian, “small details like ships, boats and other small flavours add immersion and depth.” Organics may not be his forté, but this is an aspect of world-building that Adrian really excels in. Balancing the immense presence of dragons, golems, and royal palaces with the natural beauty of the land, as well as the small signs of life dotted about it, is not an easy task.

If you want to be able to achieve a similar vibe in your next build, Adrian does have a few pointers. For instance, “look at [a lot of] concept art and images. If possible, use your own building style or [merge] different styles to compile a unique idea for your build. Add small hidden flavours to make the map [feel] alive.”

But be warned – it takes a great deal of hard work and some trial and error to make a build this impressive. “It took three months to complete everything I wanted to put in,” says Adrian. “I put a lot of effort into this map. I spent most of my time on the castle – there were a lot of previous versions, but I only liked this one.”

I guess the lesson is, find something that inspires you and then try, try and try again. You might hate your first creations, but they’ll lead you to something you love. Oh, and maybe don’t build houses of wood if you live next to a giant fire-breathing dragon. Jus’ sayin’.

Renders by: Kryiin, Iskillia, Lukasz, Kouris, TerrorQ, Cmelvard, Maaki, iDragolyte, AddictedToMC and Omegafoxx.

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