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Enchanting

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Enchantment table interface. Top: Without item. Bottom: With item, hovering over the second line.
Notch-twitter.png How does enchanting work in Minecraft? Well, you open a magical book and pick a random spell, not quite sure knowing what it will do. MAGIC!
Notch [1]


Enchanting is a mechanic that augments armor, tools, weapons (swords and bows), and books with one or more of a variety of "enchantments" that improve an item's existing abilities or imbue them with additional abilities and uses.

Enchanting methods[edit | edit source]

There are three methods of enchanting items in Survival mode:

  • Through an enchantment table in exchange for experience points and lapis lazuli. Only unenchanted items may be enchanted this way.
  • Through an anvil, combining an enchanted book with an item, which also costs experience points.
  • Through an anvil, combining two of the same item with different existing enchantments into a single item that has the enchantments of both.

There are also an additional three methods of obtaining enchanted items:

  • Through a villager, who may trade some enchanted items for emeralds.
  • Through fishing, which gives a chance of obtaining enchanted items.
  • Through a zombie or a skeleton, if they have enchanted items and you kill them, there is a chance of getting enchanted items.

Items can also be enchanted using commands such as /enchant for OPs on a server, or in a singleplayer world with cheats enabled. In creative mode, items can be enchanted via an anvil and enchanted books, with no experience or lapis lazuli required. Enchanted books are available in the creative mode inventory, with individual book displays for the highest level of each enchantment and other levels available via the "Search" tab.

Enchantment table[edit | edit source]

An item can be enchanted by using an enchantment table and placing the item and 1–3 lapis lazuli in the input slots. Upon placing the item, three randomized options will appear on the right of the GUI. The glyphs here are meaningless, but hovering over a presented enchantment will show one enchantment that will be applied. Only choices with a level requirement equal to or below the player's current level and a lapis lazuli requirement equal to or below the number of lapis lazuli placed in the table can be chosen. Each option will imbue the item with a randomized set of enchantments that are dependent on the number of experience levels required (e.g.: a level 1 enchantment can give a pickaxe the "Efficiency I" enchantment); the actual level cost and the number of lapis lazuli required has no effect.

The level requirement influences the quantity, type, and level of enchantments instilled in the item, with a higher experience level generally resulting in more and/or higher-level enchantments. Nevertheless, there is a heavy random factor, and even a level 30 enchantment (the maximum) doesn't guarantee more than one enchantment, nor even that enchantments will be "maximum strength" — a level 30 enchantment can still yield Fortune II or Efficiency III alone, for example.

Enchanting a book will produce an enchanted book, which does nothing on its own, but effectively "saves" the enchantment for later application to another item with an anvil.

Unlike with an anvil, using the enchanting table while on creative will still cost XP. However if the player doesn't have enough XP they will just be reduced to level zero and the enchantment will work as if they had paid the full amount. This includes attempts to use the enchanting table while already at level zero.

Affecting offered enchantments[edit | edit source]

The possible enchantments depend only on the player's enchantment seed, the item type and material, and the enchantment level (1–30). Removing the item and putting it back in, clicking on the item slot with a different item, using a different item of the same type and material, replacing or moving the table (but keeping the same number of bookshelves), using a different table with the same number of bookshelves, or replacing or rearranging the bookshelves without changing their total number has no effect on the possible enchantments.

Changing the enchantment levels offered by adding, removing, or blocking bookshelves will alter the enchantments shown, but will not change possible enchantments, using another enchanting table with the previous bookshelf number will show the previous enchantments. The enchantments for a particular enchantment level (with the same seed and item) do also differ depending on which row it appears in, but they are no "better" or "worse" based on the row despite the different resource costs.

Enchanting any item at any enchantment level changes the player's enchantment seed, which will change the possible enchantments for every item at every enchantment level. Thus, if none of the available enchantments for a tool are desired, 1 lapis lazuli and 1 level could be spent to enchant a book or a different tool to refresh the list.

Strategy[edit | edit source]

Since not all levels require the same amount of experience, the cost of an enchantment in terms of time and effort increases as your current level increases.

  • As you level up, each level requires more XP than the last; the XP required to progress from 30 to 31 could equivalently progress you from 0 to 8, or from 10 to just shy of 14. Try to enchant using a level as close to yours as possible to make the high XP cost worthwhile.
  • Note that in time the anvil will be competing for your levels. It has similar logic, but it has a maximum requirement and cost of 39 levels, rather than a maximum requirement of 30 and maximum cost of 3.

Console Edition[edit | edit source]

In the Console Edition, enchanting has the following differences:

  • No tooltips are displayed on enchantments, causing it to be impossible to tell what enchantments will be gotten before selecting it.
  • Enchanting does not require lapis lazuli, but each enchantment removes all the required levels, instead of just 1 to 3 levels.
  • Removing the item will change the available enchantments.

Anvil combinations[edit | edit source]

An anvil can be used to combine the enchantments of two items, sacrificing one of them and repairing the other. The items must be of the same type (for example, an iron pickaxe and a diamond pickaxe cannot be combined), and there are limits to what enchantments can be combined and how much work can be done in one operation.

To combine items, the player places the target item in the first slot of an anvil, and the sacrifice item in the second slot. If the combination is allowed, the resulting enchanted item will appear in the anvil's output slot and an experience level cost appears below (green if the player has enough experience levels, red if they don't). To complete the enchanting, the player removes the enchanted item from the anvil's output slot, and their experience level is reduced accordingly.

The cost in levels depends on the enchantments, with highly enchanted items costing more. If the target item is also being repaired, that costs more as well. The target item can also be renamed, at additional cost. There is also an accumulating surcharge for prior work done on the anvil. In survival mode, there is a limit of 39 levels for any work performed on the anvil—if a job would cost more, it will be refused (though it might be do-able in steps: repair and then combine enchantments).

Enchanted books[edit | edit source]

Enchanted books can be made by using an enchanting table to enchant a book. (They can also be found in generated chests, or purchased with emeralds from a villager librarian or looted by fishing rod.) The book can receive multiple enchantments of any type, but only enchantments appropriate to a given item type may be applied to that item. For example, the same book may receive Respiration and Power enchantments, but the Respiration enchantment will be lost if the book is applied to anything but a helmet, and the Power enchantment will be lost if the book is applied to anything but a bow.

Enchanted books are used on an anvil to add enchantments to items. They can apply some enchantments to items which cannot be enchanted from an enchantment table, e.g., Silk Touch on shears, Thorns on boots. (In creative mode, books can enchant any item with any enchantment, such as a Knockback II Stick.)

The experience costs for using books are considerably less than for combining items with similar enchantments, since the books themselves cost levels to create. However, it's still an extra cost, and enchanting items directly has a chance to get multiple enchantments. The big advantage of books is that they can be stockpiled for use on an item of choice, and allow for controlled combinations. For example, a Silk Touch book could be used on shears, axe, pickaxe, or shovel, and you can decide which at your leisure—perhaps something that already has Unbreaking? An Unbreaking book might be used to preserve your Looting sword, Fortune pickaxe, or Thorns armor.

Books can receive multiple enchantments from the enchanting table. However, the enchantments may not all apply to a given item, and only the enchantments which do apply will be transferred.

Enchantments[edit | edit source]

The table below describes the enchantments that are possible for the player to acquire legitimately in Survival mode. Other combinations are possible in Creative mode or with cheats, mods, or third-party software.

ID
The identification number of the enchantment, can be used on data tags of items to add enchantments. See item format.
Name
The enchantment's name will appear under the item's name when the player hovers the mouse over the item along with its level.
Max Level
The maximum level that can be received legitimately. Higher levels are possible using commands.
Primary Items
The items that can receive the enchantment legitimately in Survival mode by any of the four possible enchanting methods. Items of any material can be enchanted (some more easily than others).
Secondary Items
Items which, in Survival mode, cannot receive the enchantment from an enchanting table but can from an enchanted book with an anvil.
Effect
A description of the capability improved or added by the enchantment.
ID Name Max Level Primary Items Secondary Items Effect
0 Protection
[note 1]
IV



Reduces most damage[note 2]

Exceptions: doesn't reduce damage from the Void, the /kill command, and hunger damage.

1 Fire Protection
[note 1]
IV



Reduces fire damage[note 2]

Also reduces burn time when set on fire. Every Level will reduce the initiated Burn time by 15%.

At Level VII for example you can't be lit on fire through Fire Aspect Enchantments. The only way to burn is staying in Lava or a Firesource. The initiated Fireticks (Lava=300, Fire=150) will be canceled, and only the remaining time in the firesource will be added to the Fireticktimer. However, this Level can not be achieved without editing.

2 Feather Falling IV
Reduces fall damage[note 2]

Also reduces the damage from ender pearl teleportations.

3 Blast Protection
[note 1]
IV



Reduces explosion damage[note 2]

Also reduces explosion knockback.

4 Projectile Protection
[note 1]
IV



Reduces projectile damage[note 2]

Includes damage from arrows, ghast/blaze fire charges, etc.

5 Respiration III
Extends underwater breathing time
  • Increases underwater breathing time by +15 seconds per level
  • Increases time between suffocation damage by +1 second per level
  • Improves underwater vision
  • Levels above III (which require editing to achieve) don't work, as they increase visibility over 100% which resembles swimming in ice slush.
6 Aqua Affinity I
Increases underwater mining rate

Breaking blocks underwater is allowed at regular speed, though the player cannot be floating to get the full effect. Different levels (through editing) are no different from lvl 1.

7 Thorns III
[note 3]




Damages attackers

(Level × 15)% chance of inflicting 1 (Half Heart.svg)-4 (Heart.svgHeart.svg) (or Level - 10 if Level > 10) damage on anyone who attacks wearer. In addition to the normal durability reduction for being hit, reduces durability by 3 points when inflicting damage and 1 point otherwise. If present on multiple pieces of armor, only the "bottommost" piece of armor counts.

8 Depth Strider III
Increases underwater movement speed
  • Every level reduces the amount water slows you by ⅓.
  • Level 3 will make you swim as fast as you walk on land. (Any level beyond that will have no effect on speed.)
  • Speed potions will affect your swimming the same way as your walking at level 3.
  • Does not increase vertical speed.
  • If editing is used to put it on other pieces of armor (such as a helmet) it works normally.
  • Not currently in console versions
ID Name Max Level Primary Items Secondary Items Effect
16 Sharpness
[note 4]
V
[note 5]


Increases damage

Each level separately adds 1.25 extra damage (Half Heart.svg × 1 1/4) to each hit.

17 Smite
[note 4]
V

Increases damage to "undead" mobs (skeletons, zombies, withers, wither skeletons, and zombie pigmen)

Each level separately adds 2.5 (Half Heart.svg × 2 1/2) extra damage to each hit, to "undead" mobs only

18 Bane of Arthropods
[note 4]
V

Increases damage to "arthropod" mobs (spiders, cave spiders, silverfish and endermites)

Each level separately adds 2.5 (Half Heart.svg × 2 1/2) extra damage to each hit, to "arthropods" only. The enchantment will also cause "arthropods" to have the Slowness IV effect when hit. The duration of the effect is a random value between 1 and 1.5 seconds at level I, increasing the max duration by 0.5 seconds each level, up to 3.5s with Bane of Arthropods V.

  • Notably, the slowness effect applies not only to "arthropod" kills with the sword itself, but to any "arthropod" kills while simply holding the sword.
19 Knockback II
Increases knockback

Increases knockback by 3 blocks at level I, and +3 blocks with every additional level. Does combine slightly with knockback caused by attacking while sprinting.

20 Fire Aspect
[note 6]
II
Sets the target on fire

Fire Aspect adds 80 Fireticks (4 seconds of burning) per Level to the target. Because the first hit is caused by the item with this enchantment, the 1st second of Fire damage will not be recognized. Targets will be dealt 3 (Heart.svgHalf Heart.svg)/ 7 (Heart.svgHeart.svgHeart.svgHalf Heart.svg) damage on level I/II.

You can use this formula to calculate the Fire damage: Fire damage in 1 (Half Heart.svg) = (Level*4)-1

When possible, dropped meat will be cooked if the mob is killed while on fire. XP will only be dropped if non-fire damage was dealt by the player within 5 seconds of the death.

21 Looting III
Mobs can drop more loot
  • Increases maximum loot drop by +1 per level.
  • Increases chance of rare drops by +1 percentage points per level (i.e., 3.5% at level I, 4.5% at level II, and 5.5% at level III).
  • Notably, this applies not only to kills with the sword but to any kills while holding the sword. For example, a player can fire an arrow at a target and then switch to a looting sword before the arrow hits to get the looting effect.
  • The exact drop chances depend on the type of drop.
  • Using codes to get higher levels than 3 works as expected, adding higher numbers with a weight of 1. High enough numbers however (like level 1000) may crash the game due to too many dropped item entities.
ID Name Max Level Primary Items Secondary Items Effect
32 Efficiency V
[note 5]




Increases mining speed

Increases mining speed +30% over the previous level: I=130%, II=169%, III=220%, IV=286%, V=371%. One must use the proper tool for a block in order to receive the speed. Does not matter if you mine it with the incorrect tier. The speed increase applies to all blocks that when mined, will drop an item.

33 Silk Touch
[note 7]
I



Mined blocks drop themselves instead of the usual items

Allows collection of blocks that are normally unobtainable.

Items which can be obtained legitimately only through use of Silk Touch: coal ore, cobweb, diamond ore, emerald ore, grass block, huge mushrooms, ice, lapis lazuli ore, mycelium, podzol, packed ice, nether quartz ore and redstone ore.

Doesn't work on: cake, carrots, cocoa pod, double slabs, fire, farmland, melon stems, monster spawner, nether wart, potatoes, pumpkin stems, snow layers, sugar cane, wheat and inverted daylight sensors.

34 Unbreaking III















Increases durability

For most items, (100/(Level+1))% chance a use reduces durability. On average, lifetime is (Level+1) times as long.

For armor, (60 + (40/(Level+1)))% chance a use reduces durability. (In other words, each durability hit against “unbreaking” armor has a 20%/27%/30% chance of being ignored.) Thus, on average, armor lasts 25%/36%/43% longer.

When durability is reduced by multiple points (e.g. hooking a mob with a fishing rods or Thorns armor), Unbreaking is applied for each point of reduction.

35 Fortune
[note 7]
III


Increases block drops

For coal, diamond, emerald, nether quartz, and lapis lazuli, level I gives a 33% chance to multiply drops by 2 (averaging 33% increase), level II gives a chance to multiply drops by 2 or 3 (25% chance each, averaging 75% increase), and level III gives a chance to multiply drops by 2, 3, or 4 (20% chance each, averaging 120% increase). 1 drop has a weight of 2, and each number of extra drops has a weight of 1.

For redstone, carrots, glowstone, sea lanterns, melons, nether wart, potatoes, and wheat (seeds only), each level increases the drop maximum by +1 (maximum 4 for glowstone, 5 for sea lanterns, and 9 for melons). For tall grass, each level increases the drop maximum by +2.

Fortune increases the probability of flint dropping from gravel, and saplings dropping from leaves, and apples dropping from oak and dark oak leaves.

Drops unenchanted level I level II level III
Flint 10% 14% 25% 100%
Jungle saplings 2.5% 2.78% 3.125% 4.17%
Other saplings 5% 6.25% 8.33% 10%
Apples 0.5% 0.556% 0.625% 0.833%
ID Name Max Level Primary Items Secondary Items Effect
48 Power V
[note 5]

Increases damage

Increases arrow damage by 25% × (level + 1), rounded up to nearest half-heart.

Arrow entities have an NBT tag damage, which for an unenchanted bow is 2, and increments by 0.5 per enchantment level.

49 Punch II
Increases knockback

Mobs and players are knocked back further.

50 Flame
[note 6]
I
Flaming arrows

Arrows are on fire when shot and deal 5 (Heart.svgHeart.svgHalf Heart.svg) fire damage over 5 seconds. Unlike flint and steel, flaming arrows only affect players, mobs, and TNT. No other blocks catch fire, and they do not produce light. Fire damage applies after initial damage, similar to Fire Aspect. Creatures killed by fire only drop XP if a player dealt non-fire damage to it within the past 5 seconds.

51 Infinity I
Shooting consumes no arrows

Allows user to fire infinite arrows as long as they have 1 arrow in their inventory. Fired arrows cannot be retrieved except in creative mode (where they are erased instead of added to your arrows).

ID Name Max Level Primary Items Secondary Items Effect
61 Luck of the Sea III
Decreases odds of catching worthless junk

Lowers chance of "junk" catches by 2.5% per level, and increases chance of "treasure" catches by 1% per level.

62 Lure III
Increases rate of fish biting your hook

Decreases wait time until a catch by 5 seconds per level. Also decreases chances of both "junk" and "treasure" catches by 1% per level. At Level VIII, the fish-catching particle effects start almost instantly. At Level IX, you are not able to catch anything. Neither level can be achieved without editing.

Notes
  1. a b c d
    Protection, Fire Protection, Blast Protection, and Projectile Protection are mutually exclusive.
  2. a b c d e
    Damage reduction from Protection, Fire Protection, Feather Falling, Blast Protection, and Projectile Protection stacks up to an upper limit cap (see Armor).
  3. Anvil required to create Thorns III by combining two Thorns II enchantments.
  4. a b c
    Sharpness, Smite, and Bane of Arthropods are mutually exclusive.
  5. a b c
    Anvil required for level V on bow, diamond weapon, tool, or book.
  6. a b
    Both the Fire Aspect and Flame enchantments are nullified on all Nether mobs, except normal skeletons, because nether mobs are immune to fire and lava.
  7. a b
    Silk Touch and Fortune are mutually exclusive. If commands are used to apply both Silk Touch and Fortune to an item, the Silk Touch enchantment will take precedence over the Fortune enchantment for blocks affected by both enchantments.

Data values[edit | edit source]

Enchantment Name ID
Protection protection 0
Fire Protection fire_protection 1
Feather Falling feather_falling 2
Blast Protection blast_protection 3
Projectile Protection projectile_protection 4
Respiration respiration 5
Aqua Affinity aqua_affinity 6
Thorns thorns 7
Depth Strider depth_strider 8
Sharpness sharpness 16
Smite smite 17
Bane of Arthropods bane_of_arthropods 18
Knockback knockback 19
Fire Aspect fire_aspect 20
Looting looting 21
Efficiency efficiency 32
Silk Touch silk_touch 33
Unbreaking unbreaking 34
Fortune fortune 35
Power power 48
Punch punch 49
Flame flame 50
Infinity infinity 51
Luck of the Sea luck_of_the_sea 61
Lure lure 62

Videos

[edit]

History[edit | edit source]

Official release
1.0.0 September 30, 2011 First mention of the enchantment table.
September 30, 2011 According to a picture Notch posted of the enchantment table, they were originally crafted with cobblestone instead of obsidian.
October 1, 2011 The first images of the enchantment screen are revealed, with enchantments written in the Standard Galactic Alphabet. The first enchantment translates onto "Well Played Internets You Are Good", the second translated into "These Names Will Be Random And Confusing", and the third translates to "Each Spell Costs Experience Levels". The Standard Galactic Alphabet or SGA was originally created by Tom Hall for use in the Commander Keen series of computer games.
Beta 1.9-pre3 Basics of enchanting added, along with the enchanting table. It did not require bookshelves to get maximum enchantments. Many enchantments were not yet in the game. Enchantments were and continue to be labeled in the enchanting table as random words written in the Standard Galactic Alphabet.
Beta 1.9-pre4 Fixed a bug where all enchantments would show up as Feather Falling I.
Properly enabled enchanting on SMP. Previously, if a player attempted to enchant an item, it appeared enchanted for the client, but updated with the un-enchanted status once the player logged out and then back in again.
? Enchantment tables drop the block only when mined by a pickaxe.
1.1 Added four bow enchantments: Power, Flame, Punch, and Infinity.
1.2.1 12w05a Enchanting no longer requires experience in Creative mode.
12w06a Bows and Golden Swords now have a small chance of being already enchanted when dropped by their respective mobs.
1.3.1 12w17a Ice and glass panes can again be collected with a Silk Touch-enchanted tool.
12w22a The maximum enchantment power was lowered from 50 to 30.
Experience is collectable with mining and cooking in furnace.
12w23a Glow on Enchanted tools and armor is now visible on multiplayer.
1.4.2 12w34b Flame enchanted bows now ignite TNT blocks.
12w41a Enchantments can now be combined using anvils, allowing some high level enchantments to be applied where they were not previously possible.
1.4.4 1.4.4-pre Enchantments can now be applied using /enchant, however Protection is unavailable due to a bug.
1.4.6 12w49a /enchant now works with ID 0, meaning it can be used to apply protection.
You can enchant books to then be used to enchant a tool.
12w50a Added a new armor enchantment: Thorns.
You can now add the Silk Touch enchantment to shears and the Unbreaking enchantment to anything that has durability.
Efficiency is nerfed a bit so that enchanted tools that don't match the block you're breaking will no longer work as quickly as before (e.g. Efficiency V Pickaxes no longer instantly break dirt or wood logs).
1.5 Efficiency is completely nerfed when using tools on the wrong block types - they now break the block at the same rate as your bare fists.
1.7.2 13w36a Added two fishing rod enchantments: Luck of the Sea and Lure. The fishing rod can now be enchanted without the use of books. Armor can now receive unbreaking without the use of books.
1.8 14w02a Enchanting receives a major overhaul where there is now a secondary cost, which is lapis lazuli.
When enchanting an item, one enchantment will now appear in the tooltip when selecting an enchantment (e.g Looting III?...).
Levels are hard to obtain again (like pre-1.3 settings.)
Level 5 enchants (Sharpness, Power, Smite & Bane of Arthropods) can be applied without the use of an anvil.
Villager trading was revamped, causing clerics to no longer enchant items, while black apron villagers will trade enchanted items.
14w04a Looting now gives a 1 percentage point increase per level to the chance of getting rare drops.
14w25a Added a new enchantment for boots: Depth Strider.
Upcoming Pocket Edition
0.12.1 build 1 Added the enchanting system and enchanting tables.
build 11 Enchanting tables are now craftable in the crafting table instead of the stonecutter.
Console Edition
TU7 Added the enchanting system and enchanting tables.


Issues[edit | edit source]

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

Trivia[edit | edit source]

  • Repairing an enchanted item by crafting will remove the enchantment on it. This happens with any enchantment on any tool.
  • All enchantments that are normally available for a sword will also work on any object held while attacking. As well, enchantments that are normally available for armor will also work for other items worn by a player, zombie, skeleton or zombie pigman (but not for saddles or horse armor or to "protect" an armor stand). Other enchantments generally have no effect on items they aren't designed for, and blocks lose their enchantments when placed.
  • Items that are enchanted will receive a glowing aura around them. Using a custom enchanted_item_glint.png in a resource pack under assets\minecraft\textures\misc will change the glow accordingly. On past versions of Minecraft and only on certain graphics cards, enchanted items would cause the hotbar to become semi-transparent whilst they were the selected item.
  • On the enchantment screen, captions in the Standard Galactic Alphabet[2] includes several in-jokes:
    • On October 1, 2011, Notch tweeted an image of the enchantment screen, with enchantments .[3] The first enchantment translates into "Well Played Internets You Are Good", the second translated into "These Names Will Be Random And Confusing", and the third translates to "Each Spell Costs Experience Levels".
    • Three of the possible words for enchantments are "the elder scrolls," likely a joke at Bethesda, creator of "The Elder Scrolls" series and whose parent company, Zenimax, attempted to sue Mojang for the name of their game Scrolls.
    • The words "klaatu berata niktu" are a (misspelled) reference to "Klaatu barada nikto", a phrase that originates from the 1951 movie The Day the Earth Stood Still and has been since used as a reference in many other movies, cartoons and games.
    • Similarly, "Xyzzy" is a magic spell in the game "Colossal Cave Adventure" and has been used in several other games as an Easter Egg or cheat code.
  • Enchanted items still pulsate while you pause the game.
  • Enchanting with gold gives you the best enchants, despite it being the material with the least durability.
  • Using the /enchant command only allows you to enchant items up to levels on an enchantment table. However, if you summon a villager, with the proper tags you can cause him to sell any item with limitless enchantments.

Gallery[edit | edit source]

See also[edit | edit source]

References[edit | edit source]

External links[edit | edit source]