The Minecraft Live recap: Caves and Cliffs update

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Mojang Studios

Miyako Grundler, staff writer

Mojang Studios

Minecraft fans have long awaited this update; being one of the most anticipated updates to ever come to the 11-year-old game. On October 3, 2020, Mojang Studios announced their newest project through Minecraft Live. Minecraft Live is a yearly event which usually occurs in the month of October; this is where Mojang announces the next year’s big update and the mob vote. The mob vote is where they present three new potential mobs to be added and the fans vote through Twitter. The mob with the least amount of votes in the first round is eliminated. There then is a final vote, and the mob that wins that vote will be added into the game. This year’s update was announced as the The Caves & Cliff update. It includes various new aspects including new cliff generations, new biomes, new cave generations and a few new mobs.  

There are tons of new updates to talk about, but to start: mobs. There are three confirmed mobs announced that will be added in the upcoming update. The warden, axolotl, goat and the glow squid. It has not been confirmed what update the glow squid is going to be released in. The first mob to be announced was the warden. The warden is a blind mob that is sensitive to sounds and vibrations. Along with the warden, a new biome was introduced; the deep dark. The warden is incredibly strong, being able to kill a player with two hits when the player is wearing full netherite. It is a great addition to the game that gives even more advanced players something to worry about. The next mob announced was the axolotl, a small and friendly mob that is able to heal players. The axolotl protects players and is capable of killing guardians and drowned. The drowned is an underwater zombie that spawns in oceans, lakes or rivers. The axolotl will spawn in one of the new biomes, lush caves. The spawn conditions of the axolotl and their drop items have not been confirmed as of yet. The next mob announced was the goat who was the winner of last year’s mob vote. The long awaited goat will be an addition to the updated cliffs and is able to jump high and headbutt other mobs. Finally, the last mob that was announced was the glow squid. This year’s mob vote was between the moobloom, the glow squid and the iceologer. In the first vote, the moobloom was eliminated to many people’s dismay. The next vote was between the iceologer and the glow squid. It was a close vote, with the glow squid narrowly winning the majority vote. 53 percent of people voted for the glow squid compared to a close 47 percent. There has not been much confirmation on what the glow squid can do but it is suspected that it has a hypnotising ability. The glow squid may come out in the Cave & Cliffs update, a sooner update or an update in the future.

Two axolotls swim freely underwater. (Mojang Studios)

Many new biomes were announced as well: lush caves, dripstone caves, the deep dark, unnamed crystal caves and other unnamed cave biomes. With the lush caves, a new tree appears called the azalea tree. The azalea tree grows above the lush caves and presumably gives the caves life. Down below the azalea tree, flowers, vines and new blocks grow. These blocks are presumed to be exclusive to the lush caves making them rare. From what was shown in the demonstration video it is believed that the azalea tree’s roots seep down into the cave and give the cave its lushness. This cave is also home to the adorable creatures, axolotls, mentioned earlier. The axolotls live in water ponds that are spawned across the lush caves.The next confirmed biome is the dripstone caves, new large caves with stalactites and stalagmites covering the ceilings and the floors. Apparently, some can fall and damage the player, but nothing further has been confirmed. The next biome update announced was overall improved cave generation. These caves are much bigger than the old caves, giving players more room to build and explore. They are more open and have more advanced generation, with pillars and even underwater lakes that span as far as you can see. The old cave generation will not go away as it was confirmed that the old caves will still generate but the new caves give more variation, space and life to join the old caves. Cave crystals were also announced but little info was provided regarding their nature. However, the release of these new crystal caves certainly means new blocks and items. Another thing that was announced was improved cliff generation. Not much was announced but there were images of different and larger generated mountains. Finally, there is the deep dark, a biome in the deepest parts of the world. The mob, the warden, spawns there and it is home to a new group of blocks, the sculk blocks. Sculk blocks are vibration sensitive and noise sensitive blocks that can help the warden find you and they also introduce a new feature, wireless redstone. The topic was not covered much, but more information will come soon. 

Lastly, additional relevant updates that will be added include the telescope, archeology, lighting rod, bundles and copper. The telescope is a new tool that will allow players to zoom in and it will be very helpful in scouting out mobs or other players. This item will most likely be crafted with the new addition crystals, but nothing has been confirmed as of now. Copper is a new block and ore that oxidizes over time. It changes from its wonderful copper color to a teal green. Copper is found in caves or underground and is presumably smelted into an ingot using a furnace which then can be crafted into a block. A new item that will likely be crafted with copper is the lightning rod. It will attract lightning to it during a thunderstorm and can be extremely useful to players; specifically for getting charged creepers or skeleton horses that can usually only be found at random lightning strikes with a rare chance. Another new feature is the addition of archeology sites. Spontaneous structures will spawn which will allow players to examine some gravel with a brush, uncovering more items as they go. One of these items is confirmed to be an emerald block, but not much else has been confirmed about archaeology. Lastly, a new item that will be added is the bundle, a backpack-like item that is used to carry more items. It is a rather simple addition but has been long awaited by many Minecraft fans. This is because all Minecraft players used to be stuck with the same amount of inventory space. Even though shulker boxes are already in the game, they are a late game item and rare. Shulker boxes are similar to bundles, they give more inventory space, however, they are hard to get and you need a pickaxe to pick them up. Another issue is, you cannot use them in your main inventory, they must be placed to be used. Also, they are hard to get because the player has to defeat the Ender Dragon and make their way to an end city for them to finally kill shulkers with the off chance that they drop a shell. The bundles will be a great and long awaited addition to the game. As of now, that is everything that has been announced for the update. It is going to be great!