Desert pyramid

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Desert pyramid
Desert pyramid.png


Consists of

See Blocks

Can generate in
existing chunks


Desert pyramids are pyramid-shaped sandstone structures naturally generated in deserts. Each pyramid contains valuable loot protected by a TNT trap.


Desert pyramids naturally generate in desert and desert hills[BE only] biomes. They always generate with their floor at y=64, this may cause them to be partially buried.


Inside view of a desert pyramid.

Desert pyramids are constructed from normal, chiseled and cut sandstone, orange and blue terracotta, sandstone slabs, and sandstone stairs.

In the center of the pyramid's ground floor is a single block of blue terracotta. Underneath this terracotta is a 'booby-trapped' hidden chamber with four chests that can each contain valuable loot. The trap consists of a stone pressure plate (located directly under the blue terracotta), connected to a 3x3x1 grid of TNT. Setting off the TNT destroys the chests and their loot.

Preview of the 4 hidden chests with the TNT Trap under the desert pyramid.

Desert pyramids look yellow on maps, similar to sand and sandstone, but with a distinctive shape.


In Java Edition, each desert pyramid chest contains items drawn from 2 pools, with the following distribution:

Stack Size Weight # Items Chance # Chests
2–4× 2–4×
Bone 4–61–82523210505.21670.8%1.4
Rotten Flesh 3–71–82523210505.21670.8%1.4
Gunpowder 1–810503.60059.0%1.7
Sand 1–810503.60059.0%1.7
String 1–810503.60059.0%1.7
Spider Eye 1–3252320.64728.7%3.5
Enchanted Book[note 1] 1202320.25923.5%4.3
Saddle 1202320.25923.5%4.3
Golden Apple 1202320.25923.5%4.3
Gold Ingot 2–7152320.87318.0%5.5
Iron Ingot 1–5152320.58218.0%5.5
Emerald 1–3152320.38818.0%5.5
Nothing[note 2] 1152320.19418.0%5.5
Iron Horse Armor 1152320.19418.0%5.5
Golden Horse Armor 1102320.12912.3%8.1
Diamond 1–352320.1296.3%15.8
Diamond Horse Armor 152320.0656.3%15.8
Enchanted Golden Apple 122320.0262.6%39.0
  1. All enchantments are equally probable, except treasure enchantments, and any level of the enchantment is equally probable.
  2. 'Nothing' does not refer to the chance of an empty chest. Instead, it refers to the chance that the random loot generator will not add any loot on a single roll.



Java Edition
1.3.112w21aAdded desert pyramids.
1.4.612w50aEnchanted books now generate in desert pyramid chests.
1.814w03aDesert pyramids now generate with terracotta (at that time called "hardened clay") instead of wool.
1.915w44aChest loot is changed.
Added gunpowder, sand, string, spider eye, and normal and enchanted golden apples.
Average yields of diamonds, gold ingots and iron ingots are decreased.
Average yields of horse armor, enchanted books, rotten flesh, saddles and emeralds are increased.
Pocket Edition Alpha
0.13.0build 1Added desert temples.
0.15.0build 1Enchanted books now generate in desert pyramid chests.
Legacy Console Edition
TU14CU11.05Patch 11.0.1Added desert pyramids.
TU31CU191.22Patch 3Desert pyramids now generate with stained clay (now terracotta) instead of wool.
New Nintendo 3DS Edition
0.1.0Added desert pyramids.


Issues relating to "Desert pyramid" are maintained on the bug tracker. Report issues there.


  • The desert pyramid's basement measures 21 blocks by 21 blocks.
  • The orange symbols on the outside resemble the Ancient Egyptian symbol for life,[1] an Ankh.[2]
  • Desert pyramids have a rare chance of generating improperly causing some blocks to be lost or added.
  • As there is no light in the lower chamber, mobs can spawn inside and trigger the TNT trap, destroying the chests and loot before any player can reach it. Also, rarely a lava lake might generate next to TNT, potentially setting the trap off as well.
  • A desert pyramid does not generate fully if generated partially on water. When generated on lakes, they are only half-generated.
  • The top hole in the pyramid's ceiling is almost always generated above ground, so buried temples are accessible, but fall damage is likely.
  • When a desert pyramid generates above a ravine, it has a deeper foundation like the village houses prior to the Village & Pillage update.


See also[edit]