Have any of you ever felt like bookshelves need a proper function over for an enchanting room? I for one feel like they need to be made more functional. If bookshelves could actually store books inside the then storage systems would become so much simpler and the books would have their own storage block.
If you mean making bookshelves like chests, meh. We don't actually have any exclusive storage containers in Minecraft and I don't think we need to create one in the form of a bookshelf. The glitched minecart with chest is a popular hack, however, so perhaps we could make such a concept official by providing a container variant (an actual bookshelf you can put items into and pull items out of).
If you mean in terms of a compression block (ie, netherwarts --> netherwart block), the bookshelf is basically already that way so strictly making just this change seems pointless to me. that said, if enchanted books or written books or book and quills cannot currently be used to make bookshelves then I agree they should be oredicted in the recipe. I know that texturepacks currently include a way to provide alternate textures, so perhaps more recipes could be included to create bookshelves using more books and less planks (ie, alternate recipes for alternate textures).
That said, perhaps making bookshelves a compression block could come with additional changes to the enchanting system:
1)the number of enchanted books determines the level of contribution by the bookshelf so that while the basic requirement is the same you don't necessarily need to have 15 whole blocks. If we assume the same recipe (3 books) and that each enchanted book represents a single bookshelf then the usual 15 bookshelves surrounding the enchanting table can be reduced down to just 5. If we change the recipe (or do something nifty like the above alternate textures), we could reduce it even further down to say just 2 bookshelves. Being that we're only counting (enchanted) books and not paying attention to the specific book's data, the resource impact for even absurdly-large aesthetic builds shouldn't be too noticeable.
2)the specific enchanted book determines the type of contribution the bookshelf provides. Base enchanting mechanics can stay randomized, but if you wanted to increase your chances of getting a particular enchant then you need to craft bookshelves using (more of) those enchanted books. In this case, rather than counting the number of books we'd be counting the types of enchants and therefore we could stuff more enchants into our bookshelves using the enchanted books that had multiple enchants on them. This could be far more expensive, so perhaps this would be in a coded format (ie letter-number such as A12) rather than a long list of clear-text tags (ie, fortune=12)
I'd be okay with this change. Even if it doesn't affect enchanting like DuhDerp suggested, it would be nice if Bookshelves stored only books, but perhaps had as many slots as a double chest does. Then you would have double the storage space compared to a normal chest, which could be useful for people who write a lot of books or pick up a bunch of lower tier enchanted books in normal gameplay.
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Bookshelves are pretty useful in the mechanics they have already. There isn't really much use of making them like a chest as the bookshelf is more of a decorative block than a storage container. However, perhaps an additional block called a "book cabinet" could be added which has a small inventry like the inventry of a donkey and it should really only allow books or written books in it. Having alternative storage contains is a great idea but, it shouldn't really take focus off the chest. I mean, a book cabinet could be used with the new villagers too, with the librarians in some way shape or form.