Exclusive: Interview with Jeb!

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With the recent news of Jens Bergensten, better known as Jeb, taking over Minecraft development after a year of co-developing with Notch, a lot of questions have been sent his way. I sent some of the most asked questions – like what is he working on, how does it feel to take over and others –  to Jeb in interview form, and was lucky enough to receive an answer! Here is a short interview with Jeb.


MFM: What are your feelings on taking over the development? You’ve developed a lot of fan-adored features already, but how does it feel completely be “in charge”?

Jeb: Oh, me and Notch have been working closely the last year so it doesn’t feel very much different. I’ll just continue to work as I’ve always been =)

MFM: You said in another interview you were going to work on the Mod API. I know it’s early to ask for specific details, but a lot of people are wondering do you plan on doing this through a web interface, or directly from Minecraft or the launcher?

Jeb: My plan is that you are going to find and install mods from ingame in the main menu.

MFM: How do you plan to handle it for the modders? Does the old plan of making the latest source code always available still apply?

Jeb: No, we will only release an api that you build your mods upon.

MFM: Are you going to work on the Mod API exclusively, or alongside developing new features for the coming updates?

Jeb: I’ll still add some new features, too. Currently I’m looking for a mod api team that can help me out with the modding stuff.

MFM: You’re also working on Cobalt, do you think taking over Minecraft might take time from developing Cobalt, or vice-versa?

Jeb: Yeah I work fulltime on Minecraft, so I have to work on Cobalt during weekends and evenings. Most of Cobalt’s development is done by Daniel ‘thewreck’ Brynolf and Pontus ‘Kinten’ Hammarberg, though, so I think we will be fine. I just have to help out a little this weekend to prepare for the alpha launch!


And there you have it, ladies and gentlemen. Even though Jeb is ditching the old “early source code access for modders” plan, he’s replacing it with an actual API, which is much better for old modders and people looking to learn modding as well. He’s also looking for a team to assist him, which is probably going to include the amazing folks behind Bukkit, and also means that development will go much easier, since Jeb doesn’t have to do all the work himself, and has better insight on how the modding community works.

It looks like the Minecraft modding community has a very bright future when the Mod API launcher sometime next year (Jeb said not earlier than March).
Stay tuned for more content all about mods for Minecraft and Minecraft itself, and sound off in the comments: How excited are you for the modding API, if you are, and why?

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23 Comments on "Exclusive: Interview with Jeb!"

  1. Thomas says:

    Are they planning to charge a fee for mods? Given that Mojang plans to integrate mods directly into the game, would they be planning to have some sort of “app store” like apple does, with mods available for purchase for like $0.99 etc.?

    I know a lot of modders make money of adfly links and donations so taking that method of delivery away from them (cause it’ll all be in game) would raise some complaints….

    • Troy says:

      Do you seriously think they would charge money for user-created mods?

      I’ve read statements that modders may release their mods on community modding sites and chose not to release them within the built-in system.

    • Kharon Alpua says:


      That is a good question, but it really depends on how a “walled garden” would be approached. My guess is that if Mojang is facilitating them through a store or gallery like the iOS App Store, the Mod authors would receive compensation (though not 100% of the price) through sales. It might even be a better source of income for us mod authors than Adfly.

      I also hope that Jeb is wise enough to not lock people into only acquiring their mods through the main menu. Users should be able to install their own mods through the mods directory without using the game to acquire it.

      In the end, I hope the Mod API will at least allow highly flexible modding, as close to source access as they can allow. If it doesn’t, I suspect that many, many of us modders will likely continue to mod in the way we have been so far.

    • Fenrirr says:

      They already said its free after public uproar about the paid-to-make-mod idea.

    • Jacob says:

      I think its pretty much going to work the same way it does now, except it’s going to be a lot easier for you to install the mods. They’ll probably do it just like texture packs. You’d still get the mods from the modder, and then put it in the mod folder, and then it shows up in an in-game list of installed mods

    • LittleDinamit says:

      I don’t think they will charge for mods, but I see the problem you’re pointing out. I guess we will have to wait and see. Maybe a donation option could be implemented?

      • Thomas says:

        Everyone makes a lot of good points – and yes – we have to wait to see what will happen. For sure I would absolutely prefer to have modding stay free (in the spirit of minecraft and where it came from).

        As far as I see it, the in game downloading should only facilitate mod installation etc., and make it easier to run several mods together, which has been a problem for people who dont have the patience and or skill to install several and have them work (although we need more block ID’s and item sprites!!!!!).

        However a good point is to allow donations from in game – a lot of these modders spend a lot of time and effort on their creations, and to be honest, some of these mods are just amazing… I would love to have an easy way to give $1 here and $1 there for my favorite mods. Modders would undoubtedly earn more for their creations that way than by getting $5 for every 10,000 downloads with adfly. Not to mention that it would encourage higher quality mods to be created.

        • LittleDinamit says:

          I always imagined it as a part of a big Minecraft social network as a part of minecraft.net, and release source code to the modders.
          Modders would upload mods to the online database, and they would be organized in a similar way BukkitDev does. Users could queue up mods, then turn on Minecraft to download them as an update. The API would just be the in-game menu that solves incompatibilities and toggles mods on and off, and the rest would be up to the community to deal with the source code. Modders could earn money on AdSense, which they would be able to inject as a part of their mod post.

      • Ana says:

        I’m not sure why but this westibe is loading extremely slow for me. Is anyone else having this issue or is it a issue on my end? I’ll check back later on and see if the problem still exists.

  2. Minecraft Guy says:

    I would NOT want to be charged for mods. That would e the worst possible thing for minecraft, especially since EVERYTHING related to mine craft except merch and the game are free. mods. skins. texture packs. most servers. people would strongly object to paying for mods, and it would be the worst move mojang could make. Even if they did do it, people would continue to make mods for minecraft free, they would find a way, the same way they will also get their ands on the source code somehow.

  3. deane says:

    finally mods in game with no need for mod loader 😉

  4. jtl999 says:

    I want source! Not a API!

  5. Google says:

    Im learning the coding for stuff like this and to know that minecraft is adding a more user-learning-friendly system is awesome!

  6. tomahawk232 says:

    Of course modding is free. The donation sites are for if people feel generous, they donate a bit, which gives the modder inspiration to put in more time in the mod.
    Mojang cannot claim the rights to sell a product that isn’t theirs. The mod coding is supposed to not include a single bit of coding from the main minecraft source code, maybe references or changes, so it is not mojang’s code, and not their product.

  7. tomahawk232 says:

    Also, the mod can’t work without minecraft (without breaking laws), so they allready get money for the mods in a way. (afterall, mods make people more interested in minecraft. more interest=more people=$$$$)

  8. Kyle_9100 says:

    You forgot to ask when this feature will be here.

  9. Chris says:

    I am just as exited for this as anybody else, but I hope there is an option to create, release, and install mods as was done before the API. Modding is about creativity and making choices, and i hope that the choice will always be there.

  10. Ihatecreepers1 says:

    Mod creation should be as simple as possible. So ANYBODY can make minecraft what THEY like so THEY can have fun. Hopefully someone is good with AI and can make bad@$$ boss battles and mobs. WITH THE LEMO- wait. This isn’t Aperture!

  11. Ihatecreepers1 says:

    Soon I can make that Mo’ Achievements mod I always dreamed about!!!

  12. Ihatecreepers1 says:

    Or a mod that makes your player 1/720th of a block and makes it so you also place and destroy blocks 1/720th of a block so you can make super small tunnels mobs can’t get through.

  13. Arrok says:

    If a pay to install option is implemented,I will continue to install mods the old fashioned “go to here and put these there” method as long as its still around.charging for user generated material would take away some of the freedom our current system of modding

  14. Miguel says:

    I?m not that much of a inretnet reader to be honest but your sites really nice, keep it up! I’ll go ahead and bookmark your website to come back in the future. Cheers

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