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Helifino! If it was something I needed to know, I usually bought a manual. Having moved just a couple of years ago, I'd guess that I still have over 200 pounds of books and manuals that I'll probably never use again...but I can't bear to just throw them away. I still prefer manuals over screen reading.
I, on the other hand, recommend curse.com and their launcher. It can download FTB modpacks (FTB is feed the beast, a well know team that put's modpacks togheter) AND it allows you to create a instance and install mods directly from the website.
As most authors use curseforge.com to host their mods those days, it's really easy to download and install mods and it's dependencies. For most mods is a simple 1 click install.
Most mods aren't updated for nor will update to 1.8, they will likely skip to 1.9, as they depend on the decompiled source of the game, each time mojang changes too much there's a gap between versions.
If you're really keen on 1.8 features, there's mods for that too. Et Futurum ports back most 1.8 features and some 1.9 too.
It adds Chocobos to the game. Lovely, adorable, Chocobos (Wark!)
Last I played it was pretty fleshed-out. Tame wild Chocobos, then breed them together to get all different flavors (blue, green, white, black, and gold; all with the appropriate special abilities.) Having a huge farm of Chocobos of all different colors... Well it gives you those warm and fuzzies that you can only get from a huge dose of nostalgia.