The block diagram in Minecraft will look even prettier in the future – at least for PC players with current Nvidia graphics cards. Nvidia announced a collaboration with Minecraft developer, Mojang, to integrate real-time raytracing into the game. The free update will appear next year for the Windows 10 version of the game.

After Mojang recently announced that the Super Duper Graphics Pack for “Minecraft” was officially phased out, owners of Nvidia’s RTX graphics cards can at least enjoy cool new lighting effects that take pixel graphics to a whole new level Rock Paper Shotgun . A first preview video shows that raytracing can not only be meaningfully used in AAA titles.

Game world comes to life thanks to raytracing

At the moment, a gold block in Minecraft is just yellow. With raytracing enabled, however, the block starts to shine and even the reflections of opponents can be seen on it, explains franchise creative director Saxs Persson. When light falls on ores, they start to sparkle and the glow of glowing lava will radiate to other nearby blocks in the future.

The beautiful effects are to be made possible by a method called “path tracing”. This method is also used in Quake 2 RTX. According to Nvidia, this technique combines all light effects (shadows, reflections, etc.) into a single “pure raytracing algorithm”. In other words: raytracing is applied to all effects in the game, there are no other lighting techniques or other visual effects used.

Fancy graphics only for owners of premium RTX cards?

It’s possible that only owners of the more powerful RTX graphics cards will enjoy the pretty lighting effects. As Polygon reports, even “Quake 2 RTX” was not stable with 60 FPS at a resolution of 1920 x 1080 pixels on Nvidia’s cheapest raytracing graphics card, the RTX 2060.

An exact date for the update is not yet known. Besides Minecraft, Dying Light 2, Synched: Off Planet and the Metro Exodus DLC: The Two Colonels will get support for raytracing and DLSS, according to Nvidia.