How to play Minecraft with friends

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Minecraft is an engaging game in itself. But it can be even more fun when you invite your friends to play with you. You can easily set up a local or server multiplayer game and play with your friends.

It can be difficult to start playing multiplayer if you are a beginner and new to the servers. But don’t worry because we bring you a simple guide on how to play Minecraft with your friends.

How to play Minecraft with friends?

There are several ways to play Minecraft in multiplayer mode. Here are some of the official methods for all versions of Minecraft.

Using LAN Multiplayer

Minecraft has an option to turn your single player world into multiplayer in one click. In short, you can enable LAN for your world and your friends from the same network can join your world.

Starting the LAN World

  1. Launch the game and start the world you want to play. You can create a new world if you want to start a new game with your friends.
  2. During the game, press Esc and go to Open to local network.
  3. You can then switch the game mode for multiplayer and cheat before starting the LAN world.
  4. Tap Start LAN World in the bottom left and your world will now be open to other players on the same network.open to LAN 2

You can manually enable LAN multiplayer in the Java edition of the game. However, it is already enabled by default in the Bedrock edition. But if not, you can follow the steps below to ensure that LAN visibility is active by following the steps below.

  1. Launch the game and create a world or modify an existing world.
  2. Make sure Visible to LAN players is enabled in the multiplayer section.
  3. Play or create the same world and launch the game.

Join the LAN world

  1. Open Minecraft and go to Multiplayer.
  2. Your game will search for games on your local network.
  3. Once it finds the game, you can select it and press Join Server.
  4. You will be loaded into the game which is open for LAN.LAN scan

Joining a LAN game in Bedrock Edition is also a different process.

  1. Press the Play button in game.
  2. Go to the Friends tab and select the LAN game you want to play.
  3. You will then spawn in the LAN visible world.

If you are the host, the save world file you opened on the local network will be on your PC. You can still play offline in the same world. Your friends can join the world where you as the host will leave the game.

Configuring your server

Before setting up your server, it’s best to know about the command line, general networking, and setting up your PC. If you’re not sure, it’s best to skip this part.

You can download the default server provided by Minecraft for JAVA edition. The file is a dedicated server file (.jar) that helps you host a server. Next, run the file you downloaded, creating an EULA file that allows you to configure your server. Once you’ve configured the server and saved the changes, you’ll need to port forward through your router so your friends can play on it.

When you are done with the process, you can run the server and your friends can join using the IP address you gave them. You can also find and follow the detailed wiki article on setting up your server for a detailed tutorial on setting up the server.

Also, you can only configure the server in Minecraft Java Edition. But people with Minecraft Bedrock Edition can join and play on the servers.

It’s best to keep in mind that you need a fairly high-end PC to set up a server and play the game at the same time. Indeed, both operations require enough resources of your system.

Using Minecraft Realms

Minecraft Realms is an easy to use Minecraft server hosting platform that allows you to host and play on your private servers. However, this is Mojang’s subscription service. You can also play a list of minigames in Minecraft Realms or play pre-made world maps, adventure maps, and more.

minecraft realms

Minecraft Realms is very easy to use as it allows people without hosting experience to host their own game. But the paid service may not be suitable for everyone.

Use hosting platforms

You can also use hosting platforms found on the internet to host your Minecraft multiplayer world. You can search for websites like Apex Hosting or Minehut and use their features to host the world.

The major drawback of using such services is that these hosting platforms operate on a subscription basis. Some websites offer free server hosting services, but give you very limited functionality.

Join online servers

Some servers are publicly available for everyone to enjoy for free. You can search for the ones you like best, get the information you need, and join the server. Plus, your friends can join in and meet up at one location in the game and play together.

  1. Collect the server address for the server you want. It’s best to keep in mind that servers can be configured differently, so you might also need more information about them. Please read the instructions on the server page to find out what you need to do.
  2. Launch the game and go to Multiplayer.
  3. Tap Add server.
  4. Fill in the server address in the designated space. You can also name the server whatever you want. It will not affect the game.
  5. Tap Join Server and you will enter the server world if the server is online.

You can easily tell if the server is online or not by looking at the left side of the list. There will be a network icon with blue bars if your PC can get a ping from the server.

It is best to know that you can only join the official dedicated servers via PC as this feature is not available for console players.

Play in split screen

Just because you’re a console gamer and can’t join the official servers doesn’t mean you can’t play with friends. Console players have the unique ability to play split-screen with their friends.

split screen
Credit: YouTube (Minecraft)
  1. Launch the game and select the world you want to play.
  2. Disable multiplayer in settings.
  3. Start the world.
  4. Turn on the second controller and press Start on it. Press it again to join player two.
  5. Use another account or press cancel so player 2 can join you as a guest.
  6. You can then play split-screen with three other friends, assuming you even have them.

These are the ways you can play Minecraft with your friends. You can try the options mentioned above and find out which one works best for you and your friends.

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