Creeper. Notch. Enderman. Griefers. Mobs. Mods. If you have a Minecrafter in your house, you've likely heard these words shouted -- like a foreign language -- from the computer room. Minecraft is EVERYWHERE. If you have an Internet connection and a 7- to... well... 45-year-old, good luck escaping it.
But if you can't escape it, you might as well become fluent in the idiom. I did some extensive field research (aka asking my 9-year-old) to discover what the hell kids are talking about when they're talking "in Minecraft"; what they want us to say in response; and what we will probably say instead. Here's a rundown on how these convos are likely to go:
"Oh no! I just got blown up by a Creeper!"
Huh? This means that your child just lost everything he/she had.
What your kid wants you to say: Oh, sweetie! That's terrible! Creepers are THE WORST. Can I get you a cookie? Five cookies?? Of course!
What YOU want to say: Perfect. Now go start your math homework.
"Gah!! An Enderman just stole a block from my house!"
Huh? Endermen are the minor bullies of Minecraft. They can take single blocks from your child's creations, one at a time. Not really a big deal.
What your kid wants you to say: (nothing)
What YOU want to say: Well, now you know how your little brother feels when you take his Hot Wheels, don't you?
"Hey Dad! Did you know that Ghasts can't blow up cobblestone?"
Huh? Apparently cobblestone is the only thing Ghasts (some sort of white creature thingy) can't blow up.
What your kid wants you to say: Cool!
What YOU want to say: My head is going to blow up if you don't start your goddamn math homework! Seriously, if you paid this much attention to your schoolwork, you could have skipped a grade by now...
"Mom! Did you know you can milk moo-shrooms to make soup?"
Huh? Yep. Cow/mushroom things can be milked to make mushroom soup.
What your kid wants you to say: Wow!
What YOU want to say: I can make mushroom soup tonight for dinner! (Warning: Do not mistake your child's in-game enthusiasm for a desire to actually try mushroom soup.)
"I just found the ENDERPORTAL!!!"
Huh? Your child basically just won the game.
What your kid wants you to say: OMG!!! Hooray! This calls for a celebratory trip for ice cream! I am sooo proud of you.
What YOU want to say: Why are you still up?? Go to sleep!! It's 11 p.m.!