The Axodile is a prehistoric shark-like creature created by me as u/Axoladdy on the r/Minecraft and r/minecraftsuggestions subreddits. The creation of this creature came amidst the controversy over the announcement by Community Manager Helen that sharks would never be added to Minecraft.
The purpose of the Axodile was to fill a space in Minecraft's oceans that without sharks would mostly be untouched by Update Aquatic. You see, the Drowned was a hostile ocean creature. It's an undead purely fantasy mob, clearly serving to be an underwater warrior judging from its trident. What a shark or Axodile would accomplish is the presence of a predator. A living breathing animal that kills for survival, not to protect something or just for the sake of doing so.
The purpose of my post on Reddit was partially in order to pitch the Axodile itself and hope it sparks an interest with the developers. But I also wanted to prove an idea that in situations where adding an animal to Minecraft would cause controversy, adding a fantasy creature based on the same idea alleviates a lot of potential backlashes. This is where the Axodile is superior to the shark.
- Sharks as real animals are misunderstood. Adding a shark would cause Mojang to face a balancing challenge PR-wise, trying to send a message somewhere between "Sharks are interesting creatures" and "Sharks will bite my face off." Both are true, but if they accidentally enforce one idea too much, people may undermine the other.
- The Axodile is a fantasy creature. With the body of a turtle, the tail of a shark, and the skin of a crocodile, this creature doesn't perfectly represent any real-life animal. It only exists in the world of Minecraft just like creepers or shulkers. Mojang can give a fantasy character any personality they want. The Axodile isn't a shark. It is the idea of a shark.
The Axodile is also superior to the shark in its abilities. Sharks are known for killing you in the water... and... well it's just a big predator that doesn't really do anything special. It bites and swims. That is its only significant abilities. What could it really do in-game? The Axodile, however, poses a significant threat if you're in a frozen ocean whether in or out of the water. Axodiles have hardened beaks, allowing them to bore through ice sheets and chase you as if they're chasing you on foot. They will even breach through ice completely, leaping into the air and body slamming you, crushing a large area of ice as they reenter the frozen depths. With the Axodiles, you play a horrifying game of Spleef which you will inevitably lose unless you find yourself on solid land or an iceberg. Or maybe you just got Frost Walker on your boots and you want to take their challenge. And if that's not enough, frozen oceans are the only ocean biome dolphins won't spawn in. There is no reason this particular area has to suffer that emptiness too.
And what is very important is that the community agrees with the idea. Over 1200 points on r/Minecraft and over 340 on r/minecraftsuggestions, multiple pings to devs and employees, and conversation of the topic almost two months after the initial posts make it undeniably clear that the community would welcome the Axodile into the Minecraft world. And I'd hope you would too, Mojang. Thank you.
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