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Sponge-mob: Minecraft snapshot 14w25a does hostile cephalopods and submerged temples

Underwater temples in Minecraft: gold-laden, but deadly.

If you like mystery in your Minecraft, turn away now. If you want some of the stones in Survival mode to remain unturned, then this post isn’t for you.

If, however, you’d rather not be surprised by angry sea creatures or huge underwater constructs when out for a dip, then read on.

The new hostile mob is the Guardian. Roughly the size of a squid but more closely resembling a naval mine, she fires beams at range – and early anthropologists have observed that she can survive without water.

The lava-resistant Guardian spawns in and around large, Aztec-ian stone structures now found in oceans.

The temples are buried deep enough they’ll likely only be accessible with recource to a Potion of Water Breathing, or via the new Death Strider boot enchantment which makes travel faster underwater. They’re built from a new block type, prismarine, and lit dimly by sea lanterns.

Jeb recommends diamond armour if you intend to face the waterborne creatures within – but intrepid (and wet) adventurers have discovered gold blocks as their reward at the core of the temple.

A larger variant of the Guardian drops wet sponges on death – items which can be made dry again by smelting in a furnace, and then used to suck up water. But you needn’t necessarily delve below the surface of the sea to find them: they can also be found occasionally in dungeons.

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The new snapshot also contains a “few months worth” of rewrites for the Minecraft engine.

“It is very likely that this snapshot may be more unstable than usual, slower than usual, slightly more sentient than usual or just generally unusual,” writes Mojang’s Dinnerbone. “Please help us to fix all these issues by reporting anything you find to the bug tracker!”

I smell a major update coming. Salty. Until then, you can access the latest snapshot by creating a new profile in the Minecraft launcher named ‘snapshots’, and ticking the box to enable experimental updates. Back up your worlds first, though, yeah?