Tutorials/Rube Goldberg machine

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A complex redstone device might not be every miner's cup of tea, but a giant chain reaction device can be a quite entertaining thing to build and test, and you can learn a lot from it. On this page are some ideas and tips that could make your RGM one to be noticed. Who knows, maybe you could become the Sprice of Minecraft!

Ideas[edit | edit source]

Zombie Maze[edit | edit source]

Show off zombie path finding by making a small maze with a trapped villager at the end. Near the end, make the zombie step on a pressure plate. You can have multiple zombies for a zombie race.

Variation[edit | edit source]

Make one exposed to the sky so they burn, causing them to find shelter with pressure plates.

Item Flow[edit | edit source]

Droppers can be used to shoot items over ice that has water on top. Make an item slide onto a pressure plate that triggers another dropper to shoot more in a different direction. You can also use anvils to crush a mob, and make its drops fall into a hopper, with a redstone comparator next to it.

Cannonstone[edit | edit source]

Sand and gravel cannons could be used to shoot a block over to an area that has a powered repeater with a missing piece of redstone dust missing. Once the block falls in place, the redstone circuit will be electrified and will conduct power. You could also shoot mobs using pistons and slime blocks.

Greenstone[edit | edit source]

Greenstone wire

A neat type of wiring can be made with cactus, sand and torches. Place a cactus, add sand on top, add a torch in the sand, and place a sand on the torch. Right next to where the sand will fall, add another cactus. Rinse and repeat.

Bluestone[edit | edit source]

Water can knock out torches. Use a water device that knocks out a torch supporting sand/gravel, making it fall 2 blocks. This will continue the water flow.

Removing the pink wool will cause the water to create a path for itself using the torches and sand.

Sandclock[edit | edit source]

A piston pushing a solid, gravity affected block (gravel or both sands) over a hole, with a powered repeater on one side of the sand's destination, before it falls and a line of repeaters on the other side can make some short pulses, and if a lot of the block is used can be used to unlock certain circuits. The powered repeater that transmits power though sand/gravel could be replaced with an observer block.
Piston is not sticky.

Pistone[edit | edit source]

Redstone blocks are a source of power, and we'll take advantage of that in this. Make a piston push a redstone block into the rear end of another piston that will push a redstone block into another piston. Also, you could place a piston where the redstone block originally was, so when the piston pushes it, piston 2 unpowers. You could make it a sticky piston that pulls a powered block away from another piston.

You could also replace the redstone blocks with opaque blocks with a torch below, or opaque blocks that gop between a powered repeater and the next piston. Slime blocks may also be used.

See here for alternate version
Knightwise variation of pistone

Oh, shoot.[edit | edit source]

Make a dispenser shoot an arrow, snowball, egg, splash potion, or anything else that is shot as a projectile when put in a powered dispenser at a painting or item frame. This will knock it off onto a wooden pressure plate or a hopper with a comparator next to it, sending a redstone signal to the next part of the contraption.

Worth a Shot[edit | edit source]

You can kill a mob with arrows or an anvil, making its treasure fall onto wooden pressure plates and/or a hopper with a comparator next to it. This can be a funny way to add some depth into your complex device. The arrow can come from the "Oh, shoot" trick.

Variation[edit | edit source]

Projectiles can also be used, for example to knock a snow golden into water.

Hot Gravel[edit | edit source]

Placing a one tick piston, or a liquid flow, that pushes away the torch in front of it that has gravel on top can be useful. On this gravel, there will be a torch on the side holding up another gravel, etc. You could even make a message with these, by stacking gravel and sand, to write something like "THANKS FOR WATCHING". This will not be visible when in its "torches" state, but when everything falls into place, everything falls into place.

[edit | edit source]

You can added music to your Rube Goldberg devices by using note blocks. Even other blocks in Minecraft that make noises, such as droppers, can sound quite melodic when mixed in with note blocks. They could contain stuff in them to jump right into the N-ice items! trick. Also, shot arrows make a whole different sound, so you can leap straight into the "Oh, shoot" technique. You could could go with the classic "Worth a Shot" technique. Keep in mind pistons are musical as well (carry on into Pistone), and so are doors (release the zombie into a maze!)

See Tutorials/Redstone music for more.

Mine-Blowing carts[edit | edit source]

You can make minecart rails with powered rails start them and detector rails to power other things in the RGM. You could use them with activator rails to transport mobs around the RGM. For example, you could make a zombie maze and put a minecart at the end. When the zombie gets in, it is moved quickly along the rails. It might then hit an activator rail and chase after another villager. The villager could have another minecart in front of it, continuing the cycle. You could also make minecarts knock other minecarts into powered rails, shooting them down the track.

Jumps[edit | edit source]

You could make the minecart jump over other minecart tracks or other objects to look cool.

Minecart Marble Run[edit | edit source]

You can use minecarts with redstone and detector rails to change the path for every minecart that uses the rail. Each should end up at a different destination, and all of them must be there to complete the circuit.

Source-ry[edit | edit source]

You probably had that terrible moment where you were building a sink bowl in a mob farm when all the water turned into source, and then your keyboard found itself lodged halfway through the monitor. Well, you can still use the source trick as an RGM component. Make an almost-complete sink bowl, and then add a dispenser that will add water in the right way to turn the whole bit into a huge source. This will allow the water to wash away a sand-supporting torch on the other side.

It burns![edit | edit source]

You can light wood or wool on fire with a dispenser and a fire charge, and have sand above the wood/wool fall once the block disappears, causing the sand to fall activating a redstone current. However, be careful when using fire, as you don't want to burn your creation down! This technique is risky, due to the chance the fire may run out before reaching the block; however, "checkpoints" (dispensers with fire charges in the middle of the fire track) may make such occurrences less likely.

Using Minecraft as part of a machine[edit | edit source]

Although great on their own, implementing Minecraft (or indeed, any other sandbox game which allows the construction of these machines) into a real life physical Rube Goldberg machine can add much more depth into both. Using an object heavy enough, such as a big marble, to activate a button which causes an action (for example, the mouse buttons), can achieve said effect. This can be seen in DoodleChaos's 23rd Rube Goldberg How to Kill a Creeper, where a block is broken and a creeper dies as a result of this.

With more hackery involved, since some microcontroller boards like Arduino Leonardo or Teensy can take virtually any signal, electronic or otherwise with sensors, as an input and emulate a keyboard and a mouse using its USB connection, you can program it to spam some commands if triggered by an external source.

In the Minecraft Pi Edition for Raspberry Pis, since the Raspberry Pi board is, just like aforementioned microcontroller boards, takes any signal as an input, and runs a special version of Minecraft that supports scripting using Python which is a full featured programming language, on a full-blown Linux distribution, more epicness can be achieved.

Omniversial[edit | edit source]

The aforementioned microcontroller board hacks can also be used with servers - this means you can connect your CMP or SMP world with the real world! Also the aforementioned Raspberry Pi can be used as a (albeit limiting) Minecraft server and the programming which is still driven by external sources, though not through that Python interface within the game directly, is still possible.

Tips and tricks[edit | edit source]

  • On the console edition, you can exit without saving after testing the RGM so you don't need to reset it.
  • Make backup copies on the PC version by copying level folder.
  • You can reset a RGM machine with the /clone command, a copy of the RGM machine, and command blocks. You could also use the new structure blocks.