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Zombie.pngZombie Villager.png
Baby Zombie.PNGBaby Zombie Villager.png
Health points

20 (Heart.svg × 10)

Armor points

2 (Armor.svg)

Attack strength

Easy: 2 (Heart.svg)
Normal: 3 (Heart.svgHalf Heart.svg)
Hard: 4 (Heart.svgHeart.svg)


Light level of 7 or less and 1×2 space anywhere but blocks marked as transparent (half blocks, glass, TNT etc).

First appearance

Classic 0.24_02

Common drops

See Drops below

Rare drops

See Drops below

Natural equipment

See Drops below


Adult: 5
Baby: 12

Network ID


Savegame ID


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Zombies are undead hostile mobs.


Zombies spawn in groups of 2-6, in dark areas with light level of 7 or less. Zombies have a 5% chance to spawn as a zombie villager and a 5% chance to spawn as a baby zombie. Baby zombies have an additional 5% chance of spawning as a chicken jockey.

Monster spawners[edit]

Zombie monster spawners have a 50% chance to spawn inside dungeons.


Zombie Villagers[edit]

Zombie Villagers comprise 5% of all spawned Zombies. They generally behave as ordinary Zombies, but their character model's head and face is reminiscent of that of a villager, but shaded with a darker green hue.

Zombie Villagers can result from Zombie attacks on ordinary villagers. If any type of Zombie kills a Villager, there is a chance that the villager will transform into a Zombie Villager (100% in hard difficulty, 50% in normal, 0% in easy).

Zombie Villagers can be cured by throwing a Splash Potion of Weakness at them, then feeding them a Golden Apple by using it on the Zombie Villager. A loud hissing sound will be heard if successful, and the Zombie Villager will begin to shudder. The transformation will take 2–5 minutes, during which time the Zombie Villager behaves like other zombies. While the zombie is being cured, it will have the Strength I effect in normal difficulty, or Strength II in hard difficulty, making it more important to isolate the zombie.

  • Cured Villagers do not retain the trades they had before they became infected.
  • If the Zombie Villager is wearing any armor or wielding tools or weapons, those items disappear when the villager is cured.
  • During the curing process, keep the Zombie Villager away from any other zombies, because the other zombies will stop the curing process.
  • Conversion can be sped up by around 4% by surrounding the zombie villager with iron bars and/or bed blocks within a 9x9x9 cube centered on the zombie villager.[1]

A Zombie Villager cannot be cured by switching from Easy, Normal or Hard difficulty to Peaceful. They will just disappear, like all other monsters when switched to Peaceful.

Baby Zombies[edit]

A baby zombie.
An armored baby zombie riding a chicken.

Baby Zombies make up 5% of zombie spawns. They are the same as regular Zombies, with the following oddities:

  • They do not burn in sunlight.[2]
  • They are faster than the normal zombie.
  • The noises they make are higher-pitched than normal zombies' voices.
  • They can ride chickens.
  • They grow up if cured.
  • When they wear armor it shrinks to fit their body size.
  • If they wear a head, jack o'lantern, or pumpkin, it will float above their head.
  • They are able to climb ladders.
  • They are able to fit through 1x1 gaps.

Baby Zombie Villagers are spawned when a zombie kills a Baby Villager. The chance of infection is the same as Zombie Villagers. Baby Zombie Villagers also spawn naturally, but the combined chance (5% villagers * 5% babies) is very low at 0.25% of all newly spawned Zombies.

Armed Zombies[edit]

Along with Skeletons, some spawned Zombies can pick up dropped items from the ground. These Zombies will automatically hold any item they come across, but if those items happen to be armor, weapons, or tools, the Zombie will wear them. Some of these Zombies spawn already sporting such items, and those items may also be enchanted. The chances of that event are listed below and are taken from the game's code. Zombie villagers can spawn naturally with armor on.

Easy Normal Hard
Armor 0%-7.5%[note 1] 0%-15%[note 1] 0%-18.75%[note 1]
Weapon 1% 1% 5%
Pick up 10% 15% 45%
Weapon enchantment 0-12%[note 1] 0-25%[note 1] 0-31%[note 1]
Armor enchantment 0-25%[note 1] 0-50%[note 1] 0-62.5%[note 1]
  1. a b c d e f g h i
    Zombie armor chances are based on the "inhabited time" of the chunk it spawns in, and the current moon phase, as well as difficulty. Being in a chunk for 150 Minecraft days during a full moon will give the maximum percentage.

If a zombie does spawn with armor, it will always include a helmet, and a 10% to 25% chance of each other piece (depending only on difficulty). The chances of it being of a particular material are:

Armor Type Chance
Gold 48.6%
Leather 36.45%
Chain 13.5%
Iron 1.4%
Diamond 0.05%

Most Zombie armor has no durability score, which means it cannot "wear out" the way player armor does. Helmets on Zombies that usually wear away while on a player (meaning not a block) can wear away and break on a Zombie if the zombie is exposed to daylight and the Zombie starts burning like usual. Two points (Armor.svg) of armor give 8% damage reduction from most sources.

If any Zombie has a sword in their hand, and a sword of a better type or with better enchantments is given, they will drop the existing sword and start using the better one. Zombies capable of taking items will also take mob heads, which they will wear, and will become their new head. Any zombie that spawns with equipment (picking up items doesn't count) will give extra experience: 1-3 points per item.


When killed, Zombies drop 0–2 pieces of rotten flesh.

Zombies will rarely drop iron ingots, carrots, potatoes, and its equipment (if any).

A zombie will drop its head when it is killed by a charged creeper's explosion.


Zombies can deal damage through closed doors.
A zombie trying to break the door down instead of taking an alternative path.
A zombie with full golden armor and rotten flesh as held item, considered as a melee weapon.
The swinging arms animation.

Zombies spawn in groups of 2-6 and will pursue the player on sight. Zombies will attempt to avoid obstacles, including sheer cliffs and lava, and will try to find the shortest path towards the player.[3] Unlike Skeletons, Zombies do not try to avoid being hit, and continue to pursue the player even when being attacked. Zombies can sometimes deal damage through a closed door, as shown on the picture to the right. Like most mobs, Zombies will always float on water, even if their target is below them.

At dawn, generally when the sun is 15 degrees or more above the ground (that is, when the moon can no longer be seen), most Zombies will catch fire and burn once exposed to direct sunlight. However, Zombies with head armor are immune to sunlight, but the armor piece will take damage. They may make some attempt to seek out shade during this time, or enter bodies of water to protect themselves from burning up. Being in water, rain, or shade negates the effects of direct sunlight, preventing them from burning. Zombies will exit protective areas to chase a close player or villager, however. If they attack an entity while burning, they will set it on fire.

As zombies are undead mobs, they are harmed by potions of healing and healed by potions of harming. They are also immune to potions of regeneration and potions of poison.

Attacking villagers[edit]

Zombies will attack villagers within 42 blocks. Once a Zombie has focused on a villager, the Zombie will ignore any other villagers and the player, until its target is dead or a mob or player attacks.

Zombies will bang on closed wooden doors, and on Hard (and Hardcore) difficulty, 5% of them can succeed in breaking them down. Otherwise, the door will crack, but not break. Iron Doors are always safe. In Pocket Edition, Zombies cannot break down wooden doors at all.


On Hard difficulty, Zombies can call other Zombies in the area to "help". When a Zombie is damaged by another entity it will attempt to spawn one reinforcement Zombie nearby (within an 80x80x80 box centered on the attacked Zombie). Both the damaged Zombie and the new Zombie will have a reduced chance of summoning another reinforcement, so they cannot cause an infinite number of Zombies to spawn, but they can multiply significantly.

Damaged Zombies will also call all other nearby Zombies in the area to attack, regardless of difficulty, like Zombie Pigmen.

These effects can be negated by killing the Zombie in as few hits as possible, by using environmental damage such as falls or lava, or by ignoring them.

Console Edition[edit]

In Console Edition, most of the Zombie and villager reactions are present, however the special door-breaking tag is not present and as such all Zombies can punch doors.

Pocket Edition[edit]

Zombies do not drop rotten flesh, instead they drop between 0-2 feathers and/or more rarely a potato/carrot. As of 0.9.0 with the addition of villagers, Zombies are attracted to villagers, but can´t break down doors. Zombies unlike their counterparts on the PC version of Minecraft can not pick up armor or any kind of item. They do not spawn with them either.



0.24_02 Zombies were the second mob to be added to Minecraft, after humans. They were the fastest mob in the game before Spiders were added in 0.26 and 0.27, and could run as fast as the player. They would occasionally appear wearing armor, but this had no protective effect on their health. When killed, zombies gave 80 points each to the player, but they did not drop their armor. Zombies also had arm swinging animations when they attacked.[4]
Zombies' armor was removed, as well as their arm swinging attack animations.
February 19, 2010 Zombies dropped 0-2 feathers upon death. Before chickens were added in Minecraft, Notch confessed[5] that he made zombies drop feathers because he had no idea what they should have dropped when killed.
1.8 Zombies now drop Rotten Flesh instead of Feathers.
Official release
1.0.0 Beta 1.9-pre4 Zombies could now be harmed by Splash Potions of Healing, and healed by Splash Potions of Harming. They also became immune to poison, although Splash Potions of Regeneration did not affect them.
1.2.1 12w03a The zombies' AI was improved, giving them a much better sense of direction when pursuing the player, allowing them to navigate obstacles, and even small mazes if constructed, to get to the player. They were also given the ability to 'see' through windows, the first mob able to do so intelligently, not counting spiders, who were able to see through all blocks at the time.
12w04a The zombies' AI was improved again to cope with catching fire in sunlight. If a zombie is exposed to sunlight and bursts into flames, it will search for a body of water to douse the flames, or at least a shelter to hide from sun.
12w06a Zombies now chase and attack villagers, attack doors (breaking them on Hard and Hardcore difficulties), and sometimes drop iron ingots, helmets, shovels and swords as a rare drop. Sometimes zombies attacked villagers in preference to the player, and always chose the shortest way to the target, even if there was a door in the way.
12w07a The drop rate of rare drops was reduced.
1.4.2 12w32a Zombie armor was added back into the game, and they could wear any type of armor. Zombies could now also hold an iron sword or iron shovel. They had a chance of dropping these items if they had them. Iron helmets, swords and shovels were removed as rare drops.
Zombies use their attack animation like they did in Classic 0.24. This only shows when a zombie is holding a weapon. When a zombie holds a weapon the damage it does is equal to the damage the player would do with the weapon added to the normal damage of the zombie.
Armor worn by zombies works the same as it does for the player, each piece gives a certain amount of armor points, where each 1 (Half Armor.svg) gives 4% damage reduction, but total damage reduction is limited to 80%.
Zombie villagers could now also spawn, and villagers now become infected when killed by a zombie. 5% of zombies spawned are zombie villagers. Infecting a baby villager creates a baby zombie villager which is faster than a normal zombie and does not age. Zombie villagers under the effects of a Potion of Weakness can be cured by using a Golden Apple on them. There is also a bug where zombies don't burn up in the sun.
12w34a Zombies have two new rare drops - carrots and potatoes.
12w34b Zombies can pick up and equip dropped items.[7][8] If killed, the zombie drops the item it is holding.
Zombies can survive sunlight if they are wearing a helmet or a pumpkin.[6]
12w36a The zombie and Zombie Pigmen models and textures have changed (no visual change, but breaks texture packs).
1.5 13w03a Zombies are now able to set the player on fire if they are on fire and they attack the player.
Zombies can call other zombies from the nearby area (radius dependent on difficulty) to attack the player, making packs of zombies approach shortly after damaging the zombie.
Zombies cause more damage when their health is lower.
1.6.1 13w17a When damaged, zombies have a low chance to spawn more zombies.
13w21a Zombie damage increasing with decreasing health was removed.
13w23b Zombie AI and mechanics changed - this made them much more horde-like.
1.6.2 1.6.2-pre Baby zombies spawn among regular ones. They have the same percentage of spawning as the Zombie Villagers'.
1.7.2 13w36a Fixed a bug where Baby Zombies would always drop nothing (even if they had picked up items).
1.7.4 13w49a Added Chicken Jockeys - A rare version of the baby zombie.
1.8 14w11a Now run away from creepers that are about to explode.
14w30a Drops head when killed by a charged creeper.
1.8.1 1.8.1-pre1 No longer run away from creepers that are about to explode.
Pocket Edition Alpha
0.2.0 Sheep and zombies were added, making them the first mobs in the Pocket Edition.
0.4.0 Zombies can drop feathers.
0.5.0 Zombies, skeletons and zombie pigmen have new animations.
0.8.0 Zombies spawn more frequently and have rare drops of Carrots and Potatoes.
0.9.0 Zombie AI and mechanics changed - this made them much smarter.
0.9.4 Zombies now have 2 (Armor.svg) armor points, preventing 8% of damage.
Console Edition
TU1 Added zombies.
TU5 Zombies now drop Rotten Flesh instead of Feathers.
TU12 The zombies' AI was improved, giving them a much better sense of direction when pursuing the player, allowing them to navigate obstacles, and even small mazes if constructed, to get to the player. They were also given the ability to 'see' through windows. If a zombie is exposed to sunlight and bursts into flames, it will search for a body of water to douse the flames.
Zombies chased and attacked villagers, attacked doors (breaking them on Hard and Hardcore difficulties) Sometimes zombies attacked villagers in preference to the player, and always chose the shortest way to the target, even if there was a door in the way.
Zombies sometimes dropped Iron Ingots, Helmets, Shovels and Swords as a rare drop.
TU14 Added zombie villagers.
TU15 Changed zombies' rare loot drop to be carrots, potatoes or iron ingots.


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


Zombie texture
  • Both the Zombie and the Player skins share the same model, thus the Zombie skin can be used as the player's skin and vice versa.
    • Zombies do have an additional 32 pixels of white space below the skin though, thus using a regular player skin for the zombie texture results in the zombie's face being on the back of its legs.
    • This is not true as of 14w03a. The zombies still use the old skin system.
  • Zombies can climb ladders, but will only do so if their path finding runs them into one.
  • Zombies can frighten villagers from behind walls of glass. Villagers will even run into a fire to "escape" from zombies behind glass.
  • Zombies attack range is a bit higher in the Console Editions than the PC version.
  • If a zombie spawns wearing multiple pieces of armor, the armor will never be mismatched (i.e. all pieces will be made of the same material); the same applies for skeletons.
  • The hat part of zombie texture can be used for zombie villagers, but it will be cubic instead of a parallelepiped.
  • Zombies will not catch fire if they are caught in cobwebs.
  • A Zombie holding an item given by a player will not despawn when left alone.
  • Killing a Baby Zombie will not give the player the "Monster Hunter" achievement.
  • Currently, zombies have the most subtypes of all the mobs:
    • This is because zombies can be zombie villagers, baby zombies, armed, armored, or any combination of the above.
    • Baby zombies can also rarely be chicken jockeys.
  • Zombie villagers will drop normal zombie heads when killed by a charged creeper.