Published January 31, 2020 by Christopher Lee

Creating a Minecraft Modpack

A while back, a group of friends and I wanted to play some modded Minecraft. However, we all wanted different mods, so no off-the-shelf pack would have pleased everyone. For this reason, I decided to create our own pack, which became the pack now known as ZaperoxCraft. Recently, people have been wanting to try new mods, and it is the general consensus that we need to make the leap from ancient 1.7.10 to 1.12. Because this would essentially be the same as building a new pack from the ground-up, I thought I would document the first part of the process here. I may write another article later going into things like MineTweaker and ModTweaker.

What mods?

As a modpack author, you are essentially acting as a bit of a game designer, but you are only able to control which mechanics are accessible to players (via mods), but not exactly how they work. Before you can even think of getting the mods set up, you need to have a good idea of what mods you actually want to have. This is best done by surveying the people your planning on playing with. I asked questions like:
  • What kind of mods do you like in Minecraft? (For example, magic themed, exploration themed, technology themed, etc)
  • Are there any specific mods you want me to get?
  • What mods do you think other people would like and why?
  • Are there any mods you specifically don't like?
  • Is there any specific version you would rather play and why?
It is best to tailor the above questions to knowledge level and experience of the person you are asking them to. For example, if you are asking the questions to a person who has never played modded Minecraft, it may be more appropriate to ask them what is there favorite part of the base game. If they answer "exploration", then get mod which adds new dimentions to explore, new biomes to existing dimentions or at least a mod which requires exploration to find items required to progress in the mod.


It is importent when planning the mods to include that they both work together well from a technical perspective (in that they don't crash the game when in the same modpack), but also that mods are not too similar. For example, if you have a mod where the main focus is a new dimension which is themed around being a big dark forest, such as "The Twilight Forest", maybe consider not also including any other mods with a similar main theme, such as "The Betweenlands". To be clear, I'm not saying there is never a situation where it would be okay to have both of these mods at the same time, however consider this: It may be confusing to players to have two independent mods which on the surface seem very similar.
Also consider not including mods which do the same thing but with a different theme, for example, Mystcraft is not identical to RFTools, but they both serve a similar purpose (allowing user created dimentions) through a similar means (aquiring or creating items that define the characteristics of the dimension).


It is also importent when planning the modpack as a whole to consider the theming. To have good theming doesn't necessarily mean you need to have only high-fantasy magic mods - ZaperoxCraft has a lot of magic, but also a lot of tech mods, a lot of exploration mods, etc. What I mean by theming, is all of the mods having a logical place in the pack. An example of a mod which wouldn't make sense in the pack would be a Thanos Infinity Gauntlet mod.
Even modpacks such as "All The Mods" tend to stay away from mods which add items/mobs which are from popular media, such as the various Doctor Who and Avengers themed mods. Before including mods like these, consider yourself in the shoes of someone who doesn't get the references. Also consider what story naratives you may end up creating if anyone wants to role-play.
However, if you do choose to add any of these type of mods, consider that not all, but many of these mods are not as well designed as more commonly included mods. They may suffer from ridiculous power-creep, which you as a modpack author will have to fix.


Check the mod is avalible for the version of Minecraft that you want to play, especially before you tell everyone that you will include it! You can see this on the mod's CurseForge page. It is importent to note the difference between each version of Minecraft, as each one adds new mechanics or changes mechanics relative to the ones before. As an example of the importence of these changes, some people really really don't like the new combat system introduced in 1.9. This doesn't mean that you now can't play 1.9 with them; you can find mods which change it back to how it was before.
However, some mods are only avalible for some version of Minecraft, like "Witchery", one of my favorites. Again, this doesn't mean you can only play 1.7.10. Some people port mods to different versions, but give them different names.

Getting the mods!

Now that you have a list of all the mods you need to get, you will need to check they all work well together. To do this, you could spend ages manually downloading and unzipping mods from
you could use the Curse Twitch client, and use one button to download and install each mod. Don't worry if your mods are not on Curse, we can add special ones later. (Protip: you will need to do it this way eventually anyway, as we are going to use the Twitch client to distribute our modpack.)
Open up the Twitch app and create a "Custom Profile" Minecraft instance of the version you want to mod. Make sure you have a version of Forge selected, preferably the latest for that version of Minecraft. This will act as the first instance of our modpack-to-be.

Adding Mods

Clicking on this instance (without pressing the play button), will open up the section to add mods, resource packs and maps. Click on "mods", then "Get Mods". Search for the names of the mods that you want to add to the modpack (it won't show mods which are not compatible with your Minecraft version). When you hover over each item, an "Install" should appear. Click this to download and install this mod. Continue this until all the mods you / your friends wanted you to add to the modpack have been added. Now go back to the modpack screen, and press "Play".
Some mods are not avalible on CurseForge. For these, the installation is exactly the same as with mods before the Twitch client was a thing. Open the instance folder, and place the mod in the mods folder.


Most mod incompatablity issues will present themselfs at launch. By "present", I mean your game will crash. My only suggestion is check the log, look for anything obvious crashing it, then remove mods until it stops crashing, then add them back slowly.

General Debugging Tips

  • Make sure there are no conflicting Biome IDs.
  • Make sure there are no conflicting Dimension IDs.
Thats all the detail I can really go into without knowing your specific set-up, error logs, etc.