Minecraft isn't exactly a great-looking game. While its block visuals are definitely iconic and make it stand out from the crowd, few would go so far to call Minecraft's cube-based world "gorgeous."
That's Minecraft as it is now. When recreated using the power of the Unreal Engine 4, Minecraft truly can become a great-looking game. That's exactly what John Alcatraz has done, in a post detailed on the Minecraft subreddit.
At first, his goal was to create a voxel-based game in Unreal Engine 4. However, he quickly realized that using the plethora of free Minecraft texture packs across the Web would be the most efficient way to get his project off the ground. So, that's exactly what he did.
"The Minecraft look then later came when I searched for textures, and actually the whole Internet is filled with public domain texture packs for Minecraft," Alcatraz writes. "So it was the best way for me to get textures for a voxel based project, since I am no artist. And let's be honest, it does not look bad like this, having the graphical power of UE4 combined with the pixel look of textures which were intended to be used in Minecraft."
Anybody who has spent any time in Mojang's blocky world will immediately be able to see the difference. Using the power of Unreal Engine 4, the game's lighting is far superior to that of regular Minecraft. Just look at the sunlight shining in through the trees! The textures themselves look much improved, and there is also more ambient noise in the background that isn't to be found in Mojang's version.
That being said, Alcatraz's project isn't a 100 percent Minecraft replica. Instead, it plays like a much simpler building game. Players begin by generating a world with a seed, and from there, can dig and chop wood just like in Minecraft. As this is a very basic version of the game, there aren't any animals to kill or crafting involved, but it's still impressive, to say the least. Judging from the comments on the YouTube video, more than a few players would be interested in trying out this graphically-improved version of Mojang's phenomenon.