Casey Burton: A craft-y magazine editor

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Casey Burton created an online publication for the Minecraft video game. Photos by B.A. Rupert. Minecraft rendering of Emerson Hall created by Burton and a friend who prefers to go by “LordRengence of Survivor Server”

When he isn’t busy studying chemistry or researching how to improve screening methods for prostate cancer, Casey Burton works on his magazine for the wildly popular video game Minecraft.

And this “fanzine” publisher isn’t even a fan of the game. A couple of his friends introduced him to Minecraft last December, during the break between semesters.

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Casey Burton’s avatar was designed by Hannah Moll

Minecraft, at its core, involves placing virtual blocks to build structures, mines, environments or anything else the player can imagine. “It’s kind of like Legos for the computer,” says Burton, a senior from Lake Ozark, Mo. Even the design is a throwback to an earlier era, with clunky, square building blocks instead of the sleek graphics of more realistic-looking games. “It looks like a game from the ’90s,” says Burton.

Even with its crude graphics, Minecraft is a hit in the gaming world. More than 35 million people have signed up to play the game at its official website, and PCMag.com recently reported that sales of the Xbox 360 version, which came out in May, had topped 3 million in July.

Burton is not one of the gaming fanatics, however. “I’m not really a gamer,” he says. “I’m usually too busy with classes and research.”

But he did see an opportunity to create an online publication for Minecraft aficionados. And so he started MCQuarterly. The first issue was published June 1 and is available in print as well as online.

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This replica of the Minecraft pickaxe is made of foam, not stone like in the game, but Joe Miner might want to borrow it anyway

“There has been a lot of support” for the publication, Burton says. His website and publication are supported through sponsorships from companies that provide server space for Minecraft gamers, and other players contribute content. One other student, Travis Tellman of Kaiser, Mo., a sophomore in English, serves as the art designer for MCQuarterly.

On his website, Burton says he started MCQuarterly “with the goal of unifying the online Minecraft community while contributing to it via donations. In our quarterly issues, we provide to you real, relevant information from the entire Minecraft spectrum — the players and server administrators — with articles pertaining to gameplay styles, predominant server trends, server highlights, and releases of new plugins and platforms.”

Burton recently teamed up with some of the game’s community leaders to create a broader online community under the MCQuarterly umbrella. Based on additional support and contributions to his effort, the quarterly publication may soon become monthly.

Burton also plans to publish a print version of the magazine. He will use proceeds from the sale of the print version to support Child’s Play, a charity supported by the gaming industry to provide toys and games to hospitals worldwide.

By Andrew Careaga

Comments

  1. Joe Minecraft says

    Sky sent me. So did the saplings, the yognauts, the family, the wolfpack, the homies, the dwellers, nearbynation, the creatures, and the champs.

  2. hellooooooooooooooooooo

  3. mathmeistro says

    What about the chaps and chap-ettes, the audience, the dudes, the ant colony, and the sexy blawks?

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