If you are using a system that’s not based on Debian/Ubuntu and want to play Minecraft Java these days, you don’t install a Minecraft.jar file anymore. Instead, you use the new “Minecraft Launcher” that is available for Windows, Mac and Linux. While this launcher is nicely packaged into a .deb installer, sadly it has not been packed for other systems. However, Mojang still offers the launcher as an archive that you can extract manually and start the launcher by double-clicking minecraft-launcher. The only problem is that, unlike the Debian/Ubuntu package, this one does not come with a minecraft-launcher.desktop which means it won’t be all nicely in your start menu and/or desktop!
But fear not, I have extracted the Minecraft.deb and extracted the minecraft-launcher.desktop for you, so that you can copy, modify and install it yourself!
Just create the file ~/.local/share/applications/minecraft-launcher.desktop with your favorite text editor, for example nano in the terminal (and then make it executable with chmod+x)!
These are the contents of the official minecraft-launcher.desktop:
[Desktop Entry] Type=Application Version=1.0 Name=Minecraft Launcher Comment=Official Minecraft Launcher Exec=/opt/minecraft-launcher/minecraft-launcher Path=/opt/minecraft-launcher Icon=minecraft-launcher Terminal=false Categories=Game;Application;
Just make sure to edit the Exec= and Path= to point to where you extracted the minecraft-launcher to (better use absolute paths here)!
As for the icon, the Minecraft.deb installs minecraft-launcher.svg to /usr/share/icons/hicolor/symbolic/apps/ but I probably can’t share that icon with you for legal reasons. However, you can obtain it easily yourself or use your favorite search engine to find any icon you like! On Manjaro, I extracted the minecraft-launcher.svg to ~/.local/share/icons/hicolor/symbolic/apps/ but as it turns out, that’s completely unnecessary as Manjaro’s icon pack has its own Minecraft icon included already! It’s not the original icon, however Manjaro’s Minecraft icon is even prettier in my opinion!
That’s all there is to it!
Your system might have trouble executing the .desktop file if it contains relative paths (~) so try setting the absolute path to where you extracted it, or extract it to /opt as originally intended.
Making the .desktop file executable might not be required, but if you can’t run it, you might have to.