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In a distant land, far away from any semblance of civilization lie untamed lands, perilous depths of underground ravines, and hoards of hostile creatures. Harsh winters that would leave the greenest thumb frostbitten consume vast stretches of land. It's a constant struggle for survival in what may seem like the last circle of Hell—but some people like to call this place home.
Welcome to Smogcraft: Smogon's unofficial Minecraft homeworld. Here you'll find the homes, businesses, and farms of many members of the community. When the boys and girls take leave from the weather war, they can be found relaxing at the tropical beaches of Oho Oasis, braving the depths of the Temple of Groudon, or designing their suburban household in New Haven. However, all of us had to start in the same location. That location is Spawn.
The spawn city, more commonly referred to as Spawn, is quite the complicated situation. Creations are destroyed as quickly as they are made due to every player wanting to leave their mark on the map. Debates spanning across dozens of pages in the dedicated Minecraft thread have tried to settle what to do with Spawn. Should we work together on a blueprint for it, gather the materials, and bring the blueprint to life together? Or should we let each wandering individual transform it as they please? The result of all these debates commits to neither side, leaving both sides unsatisfied. At the end of the day, it leaves the average Smogcrafter calling Spawn "home" the same way you'd call a job flipping burgers a "career".
If the quality of Spawn hasn't made you log off, you probably want to don your Hawaiian t-shirt and cargo pants and head over to the train station. Here you'll be able to access all major settlements of Smogcraft via the minecart metro with our totally 100% authentic legit minecarts we spent hours slaving away in caves for (really, guys!!! honest!!). Depending on where you're headed you could be in for quite a long trip, so either sit back and take in the sights, or go get started on dinner. Alternatively, if you're feeling a bit more adventurous, you could travel through hell itself to get to your destination. Nether Portals lead you to a fiery, hellish dimension for the trade-off that every 1 step you take there accounts for eight in the real world, making it very efficient to get around. The idea to lay down some track for an even quicker train station has come up, but no one has dared tame the blazing rocky terrain to do so.
You've hit your first stop after taking the metro. You are likely now in New Haven, an upper middle class suburban neighborhood. Many citizens of Smogcraft have taken to living out the American dream here (minus the 2.5 kids). Ironically enough, New Haven has the highest crime rate out of all the settlments on the server. While I would be one to blame the rap musics, the likely cause is the high population of people in the community. Noteworthy sights are the home of the vault thief, Borogoves, who has an unobtainable bedrock block in plain view on his front lawn as a trophy of his conquests, and Mastadi's home which has been covered in paintings as the result of a prank that was never cleaned up. The numerous utility buildings around the neighborhood make it easy to see why so many people live at this spawn-away-from-spawn.
The next (formerly) popular destination on the metro is Oho Oasis. Oho was the first settlement on the server to feature its own restricted building code: all homes had to be made in the style of a beach house. Over time, however, the rules were extended to include all things beach-like, including sand castles and things like the wool Lotad on the coast. Unfortunately, after New Haven came into existence, the residents of Oho left as quick as they came. There is only one resident left in Oho: roaming around the sandy, abandoned beaches, Shii remains as a watchful warden. Don't let her catch you in her house or things will get violent.
Far away from the civilized world, the Australians of the server, or Aussies, have settled down into a snowy town called Pale Pass. Pale Pass boasts a very cozy-theme that conjures up thoughts of a warm night by the fire. The town uses grey stone bricks and spruce logs as their sapling building blocks. The layout of the town is just a tad messy, but the town itself is MASSIVE, sporting embassies, farms, homes, churches, and libraries across a 200 block area. In the underground section of the town, they've recreated a forest complete with a bubbling brook. The underground is locked with a golden door and is quite the adventure to find among Pale Pass's numerous buildings.
Locked away by the complex coding of Wyverii lies the Groudon temple. For any of those brave enough to face the temple's challenges, you will need to pack quite the bit of supplies to scale the steep cliffs of the mountain it resides in. Inside the temple, you will find combination locks, timed platforming events, and the shrine of Groudon himself. Should you fail to meet any of the challenges, your death will be made swift by a thematically appropriate death by lava. The view of the shrine, however, is well worth the possible price of your life (and all of your items!).
If you didn't know any better, you'd think this town was the resting spot of a Regigigas. While that would be extremely cool, you and the citizens of Smogcraft will have to settle for Kansopolis. This town looks like the zebra striped interior of a 1970s car. While composition of the city is quite questionable, the city itself has some of the best architecture on the server. Once inside the city, walking to the left will put you in the marketplace, filled with quality store names like Baker Gaijin (a bakery), Wood Ye Kindly (a logging site), and Voluptuous Melons (a fruit shack). On the right you'll find all the utilities that you would in any settlement. The underground portion of the city, the Bizarre Bazaar, is reserved for more shops.
Perhaps the most awe-inspiring site on the entire server is Ber Durad. Not only is the structure itself arguably the most detailed and jaw-dropping in all of Smogcraft, Ber Durad was created by one user: thursdaypostal. thursday, known to the community as Oli, can often be found high up on the scaffolding in his underground fortress. This location is easily one of the most fun to show off during a tour, as nothing can top the sight of a newbie walking up from Oli's railway station and gazing up at the carvings in the ceiling. Expect to see a lot of death notifications as Oli attempts to maintain balance on the scaffolding and tame the darkness that is Ber Durad.
Our final stop on Smogcraft is something out of a licked stamp of LSD. Ludibrium is a town composed of four glass domes with their contents constructed entirely out of colored wool. It takes on a childlike theme, an example being the dog with a police cap to represent The Department of Domeland Security or the use of a scholarly owl to invite you to read the books inside at the library. The painstaking work it takes to build underwater makes this a site that causes many Minecraft players to cringe with sympathy pains of diving, getting trapped in currents, and coming up for air all while trying to build. While it may seem that the founders of Ludibrium would had to have been a very well-prepared, well determined bunch, this is the work of just one well-prepared, determined user. The founding father of which is none other than yours truly.
When the monotony of gathering supplies and starting yet another project begins to lose its charm, it's easy to round up a group of players from the community for one of our alternate activities. One of the most frequent is our anarchy raids, where we'll take a dozen of our players and join one of the lawless servers that can be found on the Mincraft Forums. From the very beginning we use our numbers to spread the good word of Smogcraft, razing entire cities and homes of those who dare cross us. Eventually, this too will bore us, and the remnants of whatever factions we've crushed fight for the scraps of our by then abandoned base. Other, less time consuming mini-games are also a good alternative for many Smogcrafters. Bomberman is a really quick and personal favorite of many players. Contestants enter an arena armed with TNT and lay it on the floor while simultaneously trying to escape. Over time the mistakes of players eager for a kill and those quick to jump on those mistakes will whittle the numbers down to two—and that's when it really gets intense.
Our most popular alternative activity to building on Smogcraft is Onslaught Orbs: Spheres of Strife. In OO:SOS, two teams have to defend their home planet against each other. Each team has a cube of TNT at the center of the planet with a switch that can be flipped by the opposing team. While it may sound simple enough, the fact that there are up to 10 different people to keep track of turns one mistake into "gg". There are smaller planets between the two planets that encourage players to build out to one another. Eventually the bridges that are made to conquer the smaller planets meet, and that's when the battle begins. One of the best times for any Smogcrafter is breaking into the core on the enemy planet and feeling your heart beat a mile a minute as you wonder if anyone saw you.
Hanging out with the Smogcrafters is quite the experience. Playing on the server is a great way to get to know many of the newer and older users of Smogon. For anyone interested in joining us on the server, a quick trip to the Minecraft thread will get you whitelisted. From there, you can get to work on leaving your mark on the server or exploring. Who knows what you might find out there?
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