How do I play multiplayer?

When playing Minecraft, you can play a singleplayer or multiplayer game. If you'd like to play with other people, there are three options:
 
A player's game version must be the same as the server version to play on that server, whether it's LAN or hosted online.
 
On the PC/Java Edition, you change game version by selecting New Profile from the game launcher, then selecting the desired game version. Switching between profiles is an easy way to quickly switch your game version.
 
On the Pocket/Windows 10 Edition you can update to the latest version by going to your app store. 
 

Playing on a local are network (LAN)

You play by opening your home or local area network (LAN) to others who are also connected to that network.
            
PC/Java Edition
To play with someone on your network first, choose a host computer. This computer should be fast enough to play Minecraft, while running a server for other players as well. That player can create a new world, or select an existing one. Once inside that world, the host can push the Esc key, then click the Open to LAN button. Here, you can choose which game mode to set for the other players: survival is the default Minecraft, with life points and hunger, creative mode allows you to fly and place an infinite amount of blocks, and adventure mode is similar to survival, but players cannot place or destroy blocks. You can also choose whether or not to turn cheats (commands) off or on.

Once you have set these options, click Start LAN World, and you'll see a message that a local game has been hosted. Other players on the same network who wish to join can now start their game, select Multiplayer, and in a few moments, their computer should automatically detect the game.

Pocket Edition/Windows 10 Edition
First, make sure every player that wants to join is connected to the same network, then choose a host device that will run the world, and see to that everyone joining is running the same version of the game as the host.
 
Start a LAN game:
1. Go to the Options menu
2. Turn on Multiplayer Game and Broadcast to LAN
3. Start the world you want to play
 

Join a LAN game:
1. Go to the Play menu
2. Click the Friends tab and look for available LAN Games

Playing on an online server

You play on an online server by locating and connecting to the IP address of a multiplayer server. 

A multiplayer server allows two or more players to play Minecraft together. You can either download the server file needed to set up your own server from Minecraft.net or connect to another person’s server.

To connect to another player's server, log into Minecraft, select Multiplayer from the main menu, click the Add Server button, and enter the IP or web address of that server. If you don't know the IP of a server, thousands of public servers can be located by doing a web search for something that suits your style of play.

Note that to access a server you need to run the same version of Minecraft as the server. If you need help with this, you can learn more in our article on Changing game version

For general information about servers, see the Minecraft Wiki's server page. For more detailed information on setting up your own server, check out the wiki's Server Tutorials.
 

Playing on Minecraft Realms

Minecraft Realms is a multiplayer service developed by Mojang. Setup is quick and through the game client and allows for you and up to ten friends to play simultaneously.
 
PC/Java Edition
You can learn more about Minecraft Realms for PC/Java Edition at Minecraft.net/realms, or browse through our Realms help section.
 
Pocket/Windows 10 Edition
Take a look at Minecraft Realms for Pocket Edition/Windows 10 Edition Beta or head over to Minecraft.net/realms

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