there is a new commons game on github. it is all the basic mods and the minetest_game uses them. this is so other gamemodes can be created like you said
That's fine! Even when it's fully implemented, we'll still have to see which mods we want to recommend for which type of gameplay.
minimal is for testing mods
Minimal uses diffrent textures and is diffrent in other aspects. It may sometimes be well suited for testing, but not always. The default minetest_game is what everything else ought to be able to work with.
Something you can rely on to exist everywhere.
called default, besides some "games" won't even need that (I do beleave that is what Celeron55 was trying to do way back when he split the engine and game up)
Yes, that might have been what Celeron55 intended in the first place, but how many diffrent "games" do you actaully see around? I don't think the game/engine is used much in that direction. Most players may consider minetest_game to be Minetest.
I don't think minetest_game is boring, for one thing.
Well, maybe not boring if you don't know that there are mods out there. But even for building (which is a lot of fun as well!), there are a lot of nodes that make the game special and more loveable (e.g. those nice chairs and tables from 3dforniture, or those great doors from homedecor). Or plants that enrich the landscape. But of course you're entitled to prefer the vanilla/minimal game.
Adding everything might only be an option for players with extremly fast computers who don't want to bother to select what they want first. It might be a bit overwhelming.
I like that you point out that creative mode isn't always best for build servers. Any time someone brings up something about additions to the game being bad for build servers, people jump on them saying "that's what creative mode is for!" But that simply isn't true. Building is more fun for many people when they can't just pull whatever material they want from thin air.
That's true. Gathering material and then building something out of it is definitely fun. And: When people build with gathered ressources, they'll put up locked chests by which you can find out who built a house. In creative, there's just the house and no idea who built that impressive structure :-( Plus, the creative inventory is not optimal. Without worldedit, all you gain in creative is infinite blocks.
Maybe we ought to introduce diffrent regions in a game world where you can do diffrent things. Not these parallel dimensions Minecraft has, but areas where players on a server can follow diffrent styles of gameplay. In one part, you might be in creative mode and just build. In another, there might be mobs that are after you, a third one mgiht be totally diffrent...