Microsoft makes education version of ‘Minecraft’ harder

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SEATTLE — Microsoft has 2 million licensed users across 115 countries playing the education version of “Minecraft.” But it turns out that students in kindergarten through 12th grade are just too good at playing computer games.

So Microsoft had to develop a tougher version of its one-hour “Minecraft” tutorial that helps students learn to code.

The company released “Hero’s Journey” this week, to line up with the upcoming Hour of Code event, which will encourage students across the world to complete a free coding tutorial in December.

Microsoft last year released an education version of the popular “Minecraft” game, which allows players to build and explore virtual worlds using block-shaped materials.

The game lets students create avatars and learn to solve problems one step at a time, said Deirdre Quarnstrom, general manager of Minecraft’s education edition at Microsoft.

“Something we’ve heard from students in the past is ‘This is just too easy,'” Quarnstrom said.