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Beacon Block.png

Tile Entity






Yes, 15

Blast resistance





Any tool




Yes (64)



First appearances

See History

Block Entity ID


Data value

dec: 138 hex: 8A bin: 10001010



Beacons! No, not "bacon" but a beam of light to pimp your castle with!
The Pretty Scary Update Promo Poster

A beacon is a unique block that projects a light beam skyward and can provide status effects to players in the vicinity.


A beacon can be mined successfully with any tool, or with bare hands.

Hardness 3
Breaking time (seconds)
Hand 4.5


Ingredients Crafting recipe

Glass +
Nether Star +

Glass Glass Glass Grid layout Arrow (small).png Beacon
Glass Nether Star Glass
Obsidian Obsidian Obsidian


Beacon blocks provide two unique functions:

  • An aesthetic landmark beam reaching into the sky, which can be visible from far away, only when placed atop a pyramid of specific mineral blocks.
  • Powers, which give players status effects within a certain radius (the visual beam must first be active)

Beacon blocks can also function as ordinary light sources, as they emit a light level 15 and can emit light while submerged underwater. Like other light sources, they will melt snow and ice.


A beam appears from a beacon if the beam is activated. The beam is visible from roughly the same distance as a single ordinary stack of blocks. If a render distance of 16 chunks is set, the beam of light is visible from up to 255 blocks away.

The color of the beam may be changed by placing up to 4 blocks of stained glass (or stained glass panes) anywhere above the beacon block. The beam will change colors according to the color of glass placed above it. Unlike other colored/dyed items, the beam color will change to match all of the colored glass above it. Also adding normal glass above the beacon will not change the default color, but will make other colors lighter.


See also: status effect

The five primary powers are:

The only secondary power is:

Level 4 pyramids can also select a secondary power. This can either be regeneration or a tier II variation of the selected primary power. When selecting the tier II variant, regeneration is no longer provided by the beacon. When selecting regeneration, the tier II variant is no longer provided by the beacon, and will change into a tier I version.

  • Level 1 pyramid - (speed or haste)
  • Level 2 pyramid - (speed, haste, resistance, or jump boost)
  • Level 3 pyramid - (speed, haste, resistance, jump boost, or strength)
  • Level 4 pyramid - (speed, haste, resistance, jump boost, or strength, and regeneration)

Powers will always be reactivated within the vicinity of the pyramid. The effective radius depends on the number of pyramid levels. When a player travels outside the area-of-effect, the powers will persist for 4–8 seconds.


In order to activate a beacon, the beacon must adhere to the following requirements

  • Beacons in the Overworld and the End require an unobstructed view of the sky, though transparent blocks (including other beacon blocks) and water will not count as obstruction. Beacons can function in the Nether, but this requires that all terrain above them be naturally generated or transparent. Also, the beam will not appear.
  • The beacon is on top of a pyramid constructed from iron blocks, gold blocks, emerald blocks, and/or diamond blocks.
  • An iron ingot, gold ingot, emerald, or diamond is used to activate the powers (status effects) to players who remain within a certain radius.


The four possible pyramid arrangements when using the beacon block. From left to right the pyramid structure decreases in complexity.

Pyramids are the structures required to activate beacons. The more levels a pyramid has, the more powers will be available to choose from, and the wider its affected vicinity will be. The type of mineral block used to build the pyramid is entirely cosmetic and has no functional effect. Several different block types can be mixed without affecting functionality. There are four possible pyramid heights. If the pyramid is damaged so that the beacon is deactivated, it will "remember" the powers it was set for, and will reactivate once the pyramid is repaired with no additional resource cost. This applies to piston-altered pyramids as well.

Level Mineral Blocks Stacks of Blocks Minerals Stacks of Minerals Layers
1 9 blocks 81 minerals 1 stack + 17 minerals 3×3, Beacon
2 34 blocks 306 minerals 4 stacks + 50 minerals 5×5, 3×3, Beacon
3 83 blocks 1 stack + 19 blocks 747 minerals 11 stacks + 43 minerals 7×7, 5×5, 3×3, Beacon
4 164 blocks 2 stacks + 36 blocks 1,476 minerals 23 stacks + 4 minerals 9×9, 7×7, 5×5, 3×3, Beacon
This six-Beacon pyramid provides all six effects from a single structure using the fewest possible mineral blocks.

Multiple beacons can make use of the same specific mineral blocks below them. Combined pyramids do not need to be symmetrical. The image to the right shows a 6-beacon (2 by 3) pyramid. It requires a total of 244 mineral blocks, with a base layer of 10 by 11.


The beacon forms a squared affected area around itself, the size of which depends on the pyramid type. The affected area extends the same number of blocks below the beacon as it does on the sides, but it travels up to the height limit (256) along the light beam, which makes it optimal to place beacons near the bottom of the map. This serves for a better volume of coverage (making beacon powers available in your mine, for example).

Pyramid Type Radius size
Level 1 20
Level 2 30
Level 3 40
Level 4 50

Since these squares are centered from the beacon, the radius indicates the distance from the beacon to 5 directions, excluding top.

Requirements for powers[edit]

The GUI shown when pressing use on the block.

Once the beacon is emitting a beam, it can then be fed 1 iron ingot, 1 gold ingot, 1 emerald, or 1 diamond, in order to provide powers (status effects) to players who remain within a certain radius. This is done through the beacon's GUI, which is displayed by pressing use while looking at the beacon block.

In the GUI, place the item to be fed in the empty slot shown, and choose a primary power by clicking one of the choices displayed. Beacons sitting atop 4-level pyramids will also display secondary power choices, one of which can be clicked to provide a second simultaneous boost. When the Done button (green check mark) is clicked, the item will be consumed and the power will be activated. To set a beacon to different powers, another gem/ingot must be consumed.

Block entity[edit]

  • Tile entity data

    •  Levels: The number of levels available from the pyramid.

    •  Primary: The primary power selected, see Potion effects for IDs. 0 means none.

    •  Secondary: The secondary power selected, see Potion effects for IDs. 0 means none.

    •  Lock: Optional. When not blank, prevents the beacon from being accessed unless the opener is holding an item whose name matches this string.



Icon Achievement In-game description Prerequisites Actual requirements (if different) Version restriction Xbox points earned Trophy type (PS)
Grid Beacon.png
Beaconator Create a full beacon The Beginning. Place a beacon block with a 4-level pyramid. PC N/A N/A


Official release
1.4.2 12w32a Beacon Block old.png Added the "Work in Progress" block, now called the Beacon.
12w34a Removed the beacon from the creative menu.
12w36a The "Work in Progress" block is now called "Beacon", can be found in the creative menu, and is craftable.
Beacon Block old2.png The texture was changed.
12w38a Beacon Block old3.png The texture was changed again. The beacon beam changed from a semi-transparent smooth beam (which conflicted with water transparency), to a pattern with 0% transparency.
12w40a Beacon Block.png The texture was changed again, and the beacon beam changed again.
1.5 13w05a Effect radius increased from 16/24/32/40 blocks to 20/30/40/50 blocks.
1.6.1 13w23a With the regeneration effect being nerfed slightly, the same effect produced from the beacon did too.
1.7.2 13w36a Added the achievement Beaconator, achieved by placing a beacon on a level-4 pyramid of specific mineral blocks.
1.8 14w29a Now displays the cracking animation.
August 5, 2014 Dinnerbone tweets a screenshot containing a colored beacon beam. The color appears to change when the beam passes through stained glass.
14w32a Beacon light changes as it goes through stained glass.
August 7, 2014 Dinnerbone tweets that blocks that only block light slightly the beacon beam can now pass through.
14w32b Beacon beams show if going through a block that doesn't completely block light rather than partially block light. This allows beacon beams to go through water and lava.
Console Edition
TU19 Added beacons.


Issues relating to "Beacon" are maintained on the issue tracker. Report issues there.


  • The player can leave a resource in the beacon block without clicking "Done".
  • The beam is 255 blocks tall, relative to the height where the beacon block itself was placed, so several beacon beams can stop at different heights.
  • If the player flies more than one block above the top of the light beam, the beam will disappear until the player moves five blocks below it.
  • A beacon's light beam does not extend all the way up to the block limit, and becomes increasingly more difficult to see if you are not looking directly at it in higher levels.
  • The texture of the beacon is 16×16, but only renders the 10×10 area in the center.
  • In the Nether a beacon's beam starts severely darkening at y127 making it almost invisible at the build limit y255.



Official release[edit]