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Minecraft Snapshot 21w40a brings more 1.18 features

Minecraft is set to end the year massively with the second part of the Caves and Cliffs update - Minecraft 1.18.

This update includes tons of new biomes and deeper system generation changes that weren’t quite ready for the first half of Caves and Cliffs. These changes will cap off the biggest update yet in Minecraft (though split into two parts), and will shake tons of things up.

While we won’t get Minecraft 1.18 until the holiday season, the dev team is giving players a chance to test out the upcoming features in Snapshot updates.

The latest Minecraft Snapshot update is 21w40a, and it spices things up for testers with some great additions.

Here’s everything you need to know about Minecraft 21w40a, the latest look ahead at Minecraft 1.18.

The Highlights

Minecraft Snapshot 21w40a does a lot of work to push ores and biomes toward how they'll shape up in Minecraft 1.18.

This includes adjusting spawn locations and spawn rates as well as more systematic changes - and a ton of biome name changes to what we'll know them as at launch.

But that's certainly not all.

Full Minecraft Snapshot 21w40a Patch Notes

Minecraft 1.17 axolotl - how to find, tame, or breed the new mob |  GamesRadar+
  • World generation has once again been tweaked.
  • When mined by the player, copper ores will drop 2-3 raw copper items. Before, they used to drop 2-3 items only.
  • Players can convert a block of copper to four cut copper in a stonecutter.
  • A handful of biome variants with different shapes but similar sizes have been merged into one since the shape is now controlled independently.
  • Some biome names have been renamed.

World Generation

  • The developers have updated ore distribution to make branch mining more rewarding for the players. They have added more exposed diamond ores, increased the height of iron ore (now generates above 80 and added extra gold ores below height -48.
  • Non-cave biomes no longer change with altitude.
  • The relative size of some biomes has been tweaked to match Minecraft 1.17 a bit closer.
  • The average size of most biomes has been increased.
  • Some aquifer issues have been fixed.
  • The frequency of underwater magma has been slightly increased.
  • More dungeons can be found, significantly below height 0.
  • Gravel now generates below height 0
  • Villages are slightly more spread out.
  • Water lake features have been removed. Aquifers provide local water levels.

Mob spawning

  • Axolotls can now only spawn in water above clay blocks in the lush caves.
  • Glowsquids now only spawn in water blocks, under a height of 30.
  • Cod, Salmon, Pufferfish, Tropical Fish, Squid, and Dolphins now only spawn in water from height 50 to 64.
  • Tropical Fish now also spawn in lush caves at any height.
  • Zombies in Minecraft once again spawn in dripstone caves. Drowneds can also spawn there.
  • Goats no longer spawn in stony peaks.

New Biome Names

  • Shattered savanna to Windswept savanna.
  • Lofty peaks to Jagged peaks.
  • Stone shore to Stony shore.
  • Jungle edge to Sparse jungle.
  • Tall birch forest to Old growth birch forest.
  • Giant tree taiga to Old growth pine taiga.
  • Giant spruce taiga to Old growth spruce taiga.
  • Wooded mountains to Windswept forest.
  • Gravelly hills to Windswept gravelly hills.
  • Snowcapped peaks to Frozen peaks.
  • Extreme hills to Windswept hills