Minecraft Forge is an application library for Minecraft. Essentially, it is a set of tools for developers who wish to mod the game. If a developer’s mod makes use of the tools provided by Forge you must have Forge installed to use it. Many mods are built on top of Minecraft Forge, so having it installed gives you access to a wide array of new Minecraft experiences.
Downloading and using Forge is painless. First, download it from this page: http://files.minecraftforge.net/. Under “Promotions” go to the “Recommended” row and then all the way to the right there will be a link labeled “Installer”. Click on this link and begin your download.
Install Minecraft Forge
Once you have your Minecraft Forge download you’ll have to install it. Find the downloaded file, right click on it and select the option to run it with Java. From there you’ll want to click “Install Client” and “Continue”. Open the Minecraft launcher and create a new profile using the Forge version.
At this point Forge is ready to go, but to get any use out of it you’ll want to install some mods. To do this first download the mod you wish to play with. It will likely come as a compressed file, but don’t worry about decompressing it. Now click the Windows start button and in the search bar type %appdata%. You should see your .minecraft folder pop up. From your .minecraft folder navigate to the .minecraft/mods folder and drop you’re mod file into there. Again, you don’t need to decompress the mod file, just drop the compressed version into the folder. Now run Minecraft, select your newly created forge profile and create a world. You’re now free to explore you’re new modified world!
Minecraft Forge Mods
So exactly what kind of new experiences does Minecraft Forge make possible? Try Railcraft. Railcraft is a mod that allows you to build an entire railroad network in your Minecraft world. With Railcraft you can build high-speed rails, junctions, steam locomotives and even tunnel boring locomotives! Or how about the Mutant Creatures mod? Imbue your Minecraft world with all sorts of new, strange and dangerous creatures. These buffed up mobs provide an interesting new challenge and special item drops. Or if you’ve ever wanted a more realistic looking character check out the Animated Player Mod. This mod gives your character a much more realistic feel with better animation, including new displays for walking, running, swimming, jumping, sneaking and eating. These are only a few examples of the mods made available by Forge, there are literally thousands more out there for you to try out!
The bottom line is this: If you haven’t installed Minecraft Forge you’re missing out on a lot the game has to offer. The Minecraft community is an endless source of creative activity and much of that activity ends up getting built on top of Forge. If Minecraft is a blank canvas, Minecraft Forge is the paint with which developers create their masterpieces. With Forge you have access to all the greatest works of the community, without Forge you’re left with a blank canvas. Download Forge and explore!