Infiniminer is commonly associated with Minecraft for giving Notch an idea on where to go with Minecraft, sometimes as a forerunner. It was developed by Zachtronics Industries, and released in steps of incremental updates during April–May 2009. It quickly garnered a following on message boards around the internet, and inspired Notch to start working on Minecraft several weeks after it was discontinued. Like Minecraft, Infiniminer is a block-based digging/building game. It was originally intended to be played as a team-based competitive game, where the goal is to locate and excavate precious metals, and bring your findings to the surface to earn points for your team. However, as the game gained popularity, players decided it was much more fun to build things than to compete for points. Zachtronics discontinued development of the game less than a month after its first release. The source code was un-obfuscated, which resulted in many hackers creating hacked clients, and others who were unhappy with balancing to fork, causing it to fatally lose coherence.
Note: To play, you’ll need the installer below, the XNA 3.0 runtime, and maybe the .NET 2.0 runtime , although you probably have it.