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Entity

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Entities encompass all dynamic, moving objects throughout the Minecraft world.

General behavior[edit]

All entities have these properties:

  • A position, velocity, and rotation (as according to ordinary Newtonian physics).
  • A specific volume they occupy, which is a 3-dimensional box with a fixed height and width (square when viewed from the top, and not rotating).
  • Current health.
  • Whether they are on fire. Fire reduces health gradually and displays flames covering the entity.
  • Effects, caused mainly by splash potions. Spiders can also spawn with effects when playing on hard mode.

Most entities can be pushed around by water currents.

Entities cannot pass through solid blocks. Most types of entities prevent blocks from being placed in the space they occupy, except for resources (dropped items) and experience orbs, which are automatically pushed out of the block to open air. Also, if an entity does overlap a block, (due to falling sand or a door being swung), then it is free to move out of the solid block but not back in. (For example, if a door is closed on you, you can jump up and stand on top of the bottom half-door block, if there is air above the door.)

Entities are lit according to the light level of the block their position is in. For example, if a minecart runs over a non-straight track directly into a solid block, it will turn black (since solid blocks always have a light level of 0); arrows are also sometimes seen to turn black (especially if fired shallowly into the ceiling).

Types of entities[edit]

The following types of entities currently exist in Minecraft.

Type Solid Drops
when killed/destroyed
Despawns Health Width × Height ID Notes
The Player Yes Their inventory No 20 (Heart.svg × 10) (Varies with attributes) 0.6×1.8 Player Special case: Notch also drops an apple.
Mobs Yes see Drops see Spawn Varies Varies see Entity IDs
Boats Yes Sticks and wood planks if crashed, boat if hit by a player No 6 (Heart.svgHeart.svgHeart.svg) 1.5×0.6 Boat (41) Recovers health quickly over time.
Takes damage from colliding with blocks or other entities at high speed.
Minecarts Yes (to projectiles and other minecarts) 1 minecart No 6 (Heart.svgHeart.svgHeart.svg) 0.98×0.7 MinecartRideable (42), MinecartChest (43), MinecartFurnace (44), MinecartTNT (45), MinecartHopper (46), MinecartSpawner (47), MinecartCommandBlock (40) Recovers health quickly over time.
Snaps to rails if in a block occupied by them.
Items Only to boats and minecarts None 5 minutes 5 (Heart.svgHeart.svgHalf Heart.svg) 0.25×0.25 Item (1) Destroyed by explosions, fire, lava, cacti, and falling anvils, but cannot be struck.
Experience orb No None 5 minutes 5 (Heart.svgHeart.svgHalf Heart.svg) 0.3×0.3 XPOrb (2) Same behaviors as dropped items; also attracted to the player.
Projectile arrows Yes (to boats and minecarts) n/a 1 minute 0.5×0.5 Arrow (10) Damages other entities if moving; harmless when stuck in a block.
Projectile snowballs, eggs Breaks on impact n/a No 0.25×0.25 Snowball (11) Eggs may spawn a chicken on impact. (1/8 chance)
Projectile ender pearl Breaks on impact n/a No 0.25×0.25 ThrownEnderpearl (14) Teleports player on impact.
Thrown eye of ender No Eye of ender after flight (1:5 chance of shattering) No 0.25×0.25 EyeOfEnderSignal (15) Floats towards the end portal in the closest stronghold.
Launched firework rocket No n/a Varies (explodes)  ? FireworksRocketEntity (22)
Primed TNT No n/a 4 seconds or fewer
(Explodes)
0.98×0.98 PrimedTnt (20)
Falling sand No Itself as an item (unless hits ground) Once entity hits ground or ~4 seconds 0.98×0.98 FallingSand (21) Drops itself when landing in a non-solid block such as a torch.
Fishing Rod bobber Only to boats and minecarts n/a 1 minute  ?  ?
Lightning bolt No n/a 1-3 ticks  ? LightningBolt
Lead knots, paintings, item frames, and armor stands No 1 Lead, 1 painting, 1 item frame or 1 armor stand (item frames will drop item inside; armor stand will drop armor/equipment on it) No Varies LeashKnot (8), Painting (9), ItemFrame (18), ArmorStand (30) Drops as an item when struck
Ghast and blaze fireballs; wither skulls Explodes on impact/deflected on hit n/a 1 minute 1.0×1.0 (Ghast), 0.3125×0.3125 (Blaze) Fireball (12), SmallFireball (13) Only ghast fireballs can be deflected.
Ender crystal Yes n/a No 5 (Heart.svgHeart.svgHalf Heart.svg) 1.0x1.0 solid(the bedrock part) and 2.0x2.0 textured EnderCrystal (200) Explodes when struck by anything, regardless of damage inflicted

Entities listed as “solid” obstruct the passage of other entities.

The size is in block lengths (usually considered to be 1 meter), and is the size of an axis-aligned bounding box with the specified width in both horizontal dimensions (X and Z) and the specified height in the Y dimension. This box does not rotate as the object rotates visually.

For a listing of numeric entity IDs, see Data values.

Motion of entities[edit]

Gravity works differently in Minecraft than the real world, as not everything is subject to the same acceleration. Additionally, there is a drag force proportional to velocity, again dependent on the entity.

Kind Acceleration
blocks/tick2
Acceleration
m/s2
Drag
1/tick
Terminal velocity
blocks/tick
Terminal velocity
m/s
Players and other living entities 0.08 32 0.02 3.92 78.4
Items, falling blocks, TNT 0.04 16 0.02 1.96 39.2
Boats and Minecarts 0.04 16 0.05 0.76 15.2
Thrown Eggs, Snowballs, Potions, and Ender Pearls 0.03 12 0.01 3.00 60.0
Fired Arrows 0.05 20 0.01 5.00 100.0
Blaze/Ghast Fireballs, Wither Skulls 0 0 0 1.90 38.0

Note that when thrown objects and arrows are simulated, the drag is applied before the acceleration, rather than after; this is why their terminal velocities are whole numbers where the others aren't.

Further notes[edit]

Item frames, paintings, armor stands, Ender Crystals and lead knots are entities, but they are unusual in that they are aligned to the block grid and are completely immobile. Doors, portals, double chests, and beds, the other objects larger than a single block, are actually groups of adjacent blocks.

Arrows, TNT and falling sand (and its variants) are assumed to have infinite health because they are not destroyed by explosions (they can be fired out of TNT cannons), nor by being on fire for long periods.

Boats and Minecarts[edit]

See also: Transportation (contains information about speed)

Boats and minecarts appear to recover health over time. For example, they can be broken by hitting them quickly, but cannot be destroyed by hits with unarmed hand with a pause after each hit. The amount of wobbling displayed by boats and minecarts when struck appears to indicate their current health.

Falling Blocks[edit]

The following description refers to sand for brevity, but gravel, anvils, and dragon eggs behave in exactly the same way.

Sand normally exists as a block. When a sand block's support is removed, it turns into a falling sand entity and falls down until it hits another object, at which point it places itself as a block in the nearest on-grid position, or turns into a sand resource if that position is occupied. While sand ordinarily falls straight down, it can be redirected by explosions and pistons. It is also possible to modify the velocity and direction of falling sand by using third party programs.

If, when the world is created, a cave is generated underneath sand, Minecraft will fail to update the block (as said in the code to not make sand fall when it is generated) and the sand will remain floating until a block is changed under, above, or beside it. This latter fact means that a single falling sand block can trigger the collapse of an entire region of sand; therefore, sand ceilings should not be disturbed unless one is outside the area, standing over a torch, or prepared to dig out quickly once the sand has fallen.

Right-clicking[edit]

Entities with right-click actions (boats, minecarts, ocelots, villagers and wolves), unlike blocks with right-click actions (such as chests), do not stop the right-click action of a tool you are holding. For example, if you right-click on a tamed wolf with a water bucket in your hand, the wolf will sit, but you will also empty the bucket at the wolf.

Riding[edit]

Entities may be riding on, or attached to, other entities. When this is the case, only the lower/"outer" entity's volume collides with other things, and only that entity can control movement. The currently possible combinations in vanilla survival are:

It is possible to have multiple levels, such as a player on a pig in a minecart.

Entities can also be stacked on top of each other with the /summon command.

If an entity is riding another entity, the top entity cannot teleport because as soon as the teleport is made, the entity is teleported back to riding the other entity. Since Minecraft smooths out movements by showing entities at locations between new and old positions, this may result in seeing the entity at several locations between riding the other entity and their teleport location.

Common NBT data

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Video[edit]

History[edit]

Official release
1.1 Players can not interact with entities from far away in Creative mode.
1.4.2 12w34a Entities can use portals.

See also[edit]


Entities