One of the biggest perks of playing Minecraft is the ability to play on a public server over the Internet. It’s a great tool to encourage cooperation between players, although, like most things on the Internet, there are people out there who are just out to ruin it for everyone else. Minecraft Realms is a new private service designed to allow people to easily set up private servers.

While the Pocket Realms service has always existed for players of the iOS and Android editions to play together, the Minecraft Realms service is designed for players of the PC edition. Realms provides tools to simplify server maintenance and to allow the host to whitelist players for their server. Unlike public servers, only players who have been invited by the host will be allowed to play on a Realm. This is intended for families who want to be able to control who their children play with, although it’s also good for a group of friends who want to play together without the possibility of other players joining their games. As of right now, only 10 players can play on one Realm, although it’s unknown as to whether this limit will be changed once the service becomes available to everyone.

Realms is a subscription-based service that’s expected to cost $10 to $15 per month, which pays for server space from either Amazon or Multiplay. Only the host is required to have a subscription; other players only need to have a copy of the game and an Internet connection. The service is currently only available to 100 selected players who attended Minecon, although an open beta will hopefully be coming soon.

Read the full update on Mojang’s Blog: