Minecraft is truly the gaming phenomenon of our age, and its success shows no signs of abating. China is the latest market to embrace Mojang’s sandbox universe.

According to Minecraft’s local publisher NetEase Games, players have downloaded more than 25,000 Minecraft mods over 1.36 billion times in China. The number of domestic registered players has passed the milestone of 200 million, making China one of the biggest markets for the sandbox phenomenon.

When attempting to navigate the world’s fastest-growing game market, many western games encounter cultural barriers.

Minecraft has faced no such problems, however. This is largely thanks to a dynamic and creative community, deeply rooted in the local culture, who are busily recreating ancient Chinese architecture in the game.

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The Meridian Gate of the Forbidden City built with Minecraft blocks

Minecraft China is being used to revive historic icons, such as the Forbidden City, giving the public an interactive way to cherish them on mobile devices or PCs.

For instance, the National Architect & Cthuwork Studio spent over three years recreating the Imperial Palace within the Forbidden city, which used over 100 million Minecraft blocks in its construction.

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The Gate of Supreme Harmony of the Forbidden City built with Minecraft blocks

The team carried out extensive research before building the city in the game. They went into painstaking detail to accurately recreate the palace interior, allowing players to truly explore the city in depth.

And thanks to another modern marvel, 3D printing, they were able to display a model of their creation within the real Imperial Palace for locals and tourists to see.

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Notre-Dame in Paris under sunlight built with Minecraft blocks

This isn’t the first time Minecraft has been used to pay tribute to a world heritage site. Before the terrible fire at Notre-Dame in Paris, an independent development studio named Huanling built a cyber version of the famous cathedral in high detail using digital technology.

The team’s breathtaking replica of the original even recreated natural light passing through the building in gorgeous, meticulous detail.

A virtual house created in Minecraft by a Chinese boy to remember his old home

Speaking of bringing precious memories to life, Minecraft China was recognized last month at the International Advertising Awards (IAI) for its 2019 Mother’s Day video, which depicts a group of Chinese children rebuilding their childhood memories with their mothers in Minecraft China.

Watch the award-winning video below.