Jeb has posted some news about the upcoming 1.3 patch on the Mojang Blog.
- Smoother Multiplayer experience
- Chat window easier editing and clickable links
- Encrypted session packets
- Single player is now basically a server running underneath your game so you can invite friends to play in your world.
- Emerald ore
- Emeralds can be used to trade with Villagers
- Books can now be written to and read
- You can now start a game with “Bonus Chest” to get you started quicker
- New wooden stair colors
- New half-slabs
- Cocoa plants
- Tweaked cauldrons
- Broken boats drop boats
- Signs are stackable and craft in stacks of 3
- Experience now drops from ores that drop items
- Shift clicking support to armor slots, brewing stands & enchantment tables
- Loads and loads of bugfixes
We’ll be trying to wrap up the world we’re currently running and will be starting a new world for the server for 1.3 to take advantage of some of the new things like Cocoa plants, Emerald ores, etc.
One feature I was really hoping to see was the mod API being implemented but it looks like that won’t be making it’s debut until patch 1.4. Also you may notice a slight hit on performance for single-player mode as it’s essentially running a shell ontop of the server in the background. They have made some noticeable increases in performance for both single player and multiplayer so hopefully the single player server won’t cause too big of a hit. For a more complete list of changes to expect, check out this RedStoneHelper post over on Reddit.