Today, Mojang announced that it has ceased development on Minecraft’s Super Duper Graphics Pack, citing technical difficulties. It’s been just over two years since the feature was announced on stage at E3 2017,
“Some of you might remember us announcing the Super Duper Graphics Pack during E3 2017,” the studio announced on its website today. “Super Duper was an ambitious initiative that brought a new look to Minecraft but, unfortunately, the pack proved too technically demanding to implement as planned.”
Mojang’s statement went on to say that the studio wasn’t happy with how the update was performing across the different platforms Minecraft on which is currently available, which range from Xbox One X to smartphones. Mojang is instead “looking into other ways for you to experience Minecraft with a new look.”
The Super Duper Graphics Pack, which was going to add new textures and visual effects to the game, including on Xbox One X where it would run in 4K, was originally slated to release in the fall of 2017, but was ultimately delayed until 2018. It didn’t arrive that year either, however, leaving Minecraft fans to wonder what had happened to the project.
While today’s announcement is the first time Mojang has addressed the issues with the Graphics Pack in an official statement from the studio at large, individual developers at the company have previously spoken out on Reddit and elsewhere, explaining the problems the development team was facing, including needing to rewrite much of the graphics portion of the game’s Bedrock Engine from scratch to accommodate the potential improvements.
Minecraft is the only first-party Microsoft game not to have Xbox One X enhancements, and it’s unclear whether this is the end of the road when it comes to that. Microsoft and Mojang did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Update: 8/12/19, 2:30 p.m. ET: “We’ve been trying to solve Super Duper for a long time,” a spokesperson for Mojang told Kotaku in an email. “We wanted to wait until we determined the path forward before officially addressing the project. We’re looking into different options with our Render Dragon graphics engine, and will have more to share soon.”