'Minecraft Earth' builds out US coverage, begins public events

The number of "Minecraft Earth" territories grows to 10 as the augmented reality version of "Minecraft" is made available across the USA on iOS and Android mobile devices, while three global public events are planned for three global cities -- New York, London, and Australia -- starting this weekend on November 16.

[Trailer - How Would You Minecraft Your World? - youtu.be/tzCBCoC2bjs]

"Minecraft Earth" is now ready to play across the USA thanks to the AR mobile game's November 12 update.

Players in the United States can play an early access version of the game on iOS and Android, joining a growing worldwide community that's officially supported in Canada, Mexico, Iceland, the UK, Sweden, the Philippines, South Korea, Australia, and New Zealand.

The iOS game is distributed through Apple's App Store via apps.apple.com/app/id1467316099, while the Android equivalent is hosted on Google Play at play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.mojang.minecraftearth.

Its players can create and superimpose interactive "Minecraft" scenes on top of real-world surroundings using the familiar cuboid blocks from the original computer, console and mobile game.

Viewing the world through their mobile device's screen and using its geolocation features, they can collect virtual materials and creatures by interacting with "Minecraft Earth" when they are out and about, then combine resources to make impressive virtual constructions -- preferably with the help of other players.

Microsoft, which owns "Minecraft" developer Mojang, is planning on having demonstration versions of "Minecraft Earth" installed in its US, Canada, London and Sydney retail stores at some point in the near future.

More immediately, a series of pop-up events has been scheduled for specific public spaces in three global cities.

Called Mobs in the Park, a reference to the generic term for "Minecraft" creatures known as mobs, the free experiences are planned for Hudson Yards in New York City, USA, The Queen's Walk in London, UK, and Campbell's Cove in Sydney, Australia.

They're to run 10am to 7pm local time over the weekends of November 16 and 17, November 23 and 24, November 30 and December 1, with a bonus New York City day on Friday, November 29.

Life-size "Minecraft" statues will let players access a customized "Minecraft Earth" adventure, through which they can obtain a wintry Jolly Llama mob in advance of more general availability in December.

While "Minecraft Earth" expands its focus to building rather than virtual creature collection and territory control, as with "Pokémon Go," the Mobs in the Park events further strengthen similarities between the two.

The enormously popular "Pokémon Go" has been holding Pokémon Go Fest events in public parks since June 2017 and Safari Zone shopping mall events since September the same year.

"Pokémon Go" developer Niantic launched another licensed AR game, "Harry Potter: Wizards Unite," in June 2019.