Minecraft developer Mojang and graphics company Nvidia today announced that a Minecraft RTX beta for Windows 10 will officially launch on Thursday, April 16th. This comes after the announcement last August that ray-tracing support would be added to the popular video game, which basically significantly improves lighting options like shadows and reflections to ultimately make for a far prettier version of the game. There's seemingly no official timeline for how long this beta might last, or when exactly it will appear as a free update -- which was previously announced -- to the Bedrock Edition of the game.
"The results of Minecraft with ray tracing are astounding," Nvidia's blog post announcing the RTX beta for Windows 10 reads in part, "realistic hard and soft shadows are seen everywhere; global illumination realistically lights the world, with that light filling interiors through windows and gaps in the terrain; illuminated blocks and other light sources cast pixel-perfect lighting; reflections are seen on all reflective surfaces and blocks, with a level of fidelity far surpassing that of screen space reflections; light reflects, refracts and scatters through water, ice, stained glass, and other transparencies; and atmospheric effects occur naturally, resulting in high quality volumetric fog, and pixel-perfect god rays."
As for how to access all of this, it's a bit involved, as 1) it's available to folks with the Windows 10 version of the game, 2) requires an Nvidia RTX GPU as well as 3) several specific steps to join Minecraft betas in general, and 4) players will need to toggle it on or off inside worlds that support it. At launch, there will be six different RTX Creator Worlds, all of which Nvidia details in its announcement.
What do you think of Minecraft with ray-traced graphics? Are you excited to check out the new beta? Let us know in the comments, or hit me up directly on Twitter at @rollinbishop to talk all things gaming!
Minecraft is currently available on... just about every possible electronic gadget it can fit on. This specific graphical update, however, is exclusive to PC, however, as the Minecraft with RTX beta for Windows 10 is set to launch on April 16th. You can check out all of our previous coverage of the Microsoft-owned title right here. Keep reading to check out what various worlds from the beta look like in a new trailer and screenshots!