[Update] Dec. 24th, 2013:
Crafting Azeroth version 1.0 has been released!
Download Now: CraftingAzeroth-v1.0-release.torrent (6.8 GB)
For more recent updates, please read this post on the Minecraft forums.
Crafting Azeroth v1.0 includes over twice the content of the original beta version, including the new continents of Outland, Northrend and the Great Sea, as well as the original continents of Kalimdor and the Eastern Kingdoms. Additionally, many zones that first appeared in the beta version have been re-generated using newly added blocks and features. To learn more about v1.0, you can view screenshots in the updated image gallery, read the included readme file, or explore the interactive map in your browser.
About this project:
The Crafting Azeroth project is a full-scale reproduction of the World of Warcraft environment for Minecraft. The creation of the map is heavily automated, assisted by custom software that I have developed. The best way to explore the map is inside Minecraft, but you can also view the map in your browser by clicking the link below:
Screenshots of the map can be seen in the galleries below, including all new screenshots of Outland and Northrend. If you are unfamiliar with World of Warcraft, the "Before and After" gallery will show comparison screenshots between World of Warcraft and Minecraft:
Additional information about the map and many older screenshots are available in this this archived post.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ):
Q. How does the conversion process work?
A. Custom software converts the continents of World of Warcraft into Minecraft blocks using a process known as voxelization. This software converts everything in the game, including all the buildings and natural details, down to the individual tree stump. Once the parameters for the software have been set, the conversion process takes approximately 48 hours and requires no human intervention.
Prior to the conversion process, I needed to match textures from World of Warcraft to the appropriate material in Minecraft. For example, an object with a wooden texture might be converted into wooden planks, while an object with a mossy texture might be converted into mossy cobblestone. I created a special software tool to help perform this assignment, but selecting materials for all 10,000+ textures in the game still required many hours of work.
Q. How large is the world?
A. The current version of the map spans approximately 500 square kilometers and contains over 100 billion blocks. The highest part of the world, the peak of Mt. Hyjal, stands more than a kilometer above sea level. Since the map exceeds the Minecraft height limit, the world had to be divided into seven altitude layers, each connected via a server-side plugin that teleports players as they approach the height limit. To be played locally, the map requires 22 gigabytes of available hard-drive space.
Q. Does the world include underground areas, like dungeons and caves?
A. Yes, the map includes all caves and dungeons that are not part of a separate instance. So, areas like Blackrock Mountain are freely accessible, but dungeons like Blackrock Depths or Molten Core are not. The map also includes many randomly generated caves similar to those found in Minecraft.
Q. Do you plan to convert any other zones, such as Pandaria?
A. Yes, work has already started on Pandaria, but it will take a bit more time before the zone is ready to be released. The conversion process can also be used on dungeons and battlegrounds, so they may appear at a later date, but they are not top priority right now.
Q. Where can I download a copy of the map?
A. The full map is available to download right now, just click the BitTorrent link at the top of this post. If you don't want to download, you can also explore a read-only version of the map by adding wow.cursecraft.com to your in-game server listing.
(new) Q. I downloaded the map, but now I'm stuck in Outland. What do I do?
A. Entering the Dark Portal in Hellfire Peninsula should return you to the Blasted Lands in Azeroth, just as it does in World of Warcraft. If the portal takes you to the Nether instead, you may not be using the correct plugins. Check the readme file for instructions on how to download and install a Bukkit server with the required plugins. The readme also lists some useful /tp commands for teleporting to key locations.
(new) Q. The game runs really slow when I'm near a jungle. How can I fix this?
A. There are two important things you can do. First, set your graphics in Minecraft to "fast", so that leaf blocks are opaque rather than transparent. Second, make sure that you are running the map on a Bukkit server with CA-Static-1.0 plugin correctly installed. Doing both of these things will greatly improve performance in large jungles and forests and should also help preserve the map from damage.
(new) Q. Can your software convert games other than WoW?
A. In principle, the same technique could be used on other games. In practice, it would be a tremendous amount of work, almost equal in difficulty to writing new software. The converter would need to be adapted to handle new file formats and a new data set, which is the majority of the "hard work" involved in the project. As a result, I have no plans to use the software to convert other games.
Q. Who is involved in this project?
A. All major software and documentation for this project was written by Rumsey (RamsesA), including the voxelization software used to generate the map and the related plugins included in the download. Hosting support for the Minecraft server is provided by Cursecraft, and in particular Martin Benjamins (Marlamin), who helps manage the server directly. The mapping software used to generate the Google Maps view of the project was provided by the Minecraft Overviewer team.
For a more detailed list of credits, please consult the readme file. Special thanks also goes to Alan J. Lee for offering to redirect the craftingazeroth.com domain to this page.
Q. Who can I contact if I have more questions?
A. In addition to posting here, you can contact me via email or Twitter, or send a private message through this website. If I do not respond right away, check if it's something covered in the readme or this FAQ.