Elder Guardian

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Elder Guardian
Elder Guardian.gif
Elder Guardian (Retracted).png
Health points

80♥ × 40



Attack strength

Easy: 5♥♥♥
Normal: 8♥♥♥♥
Hard: 12♥ × 6


Height: 1.9975 Blocks
Width: 1.9975 Blocks

Internal ID

JE: 4
BE: 50

Namespaced ID


The elder guardian is a stronger, larger variant of the guardian that can inflict Mining Fatigue.


Three elder guardians spawn naturally during the generation of each monument: one in the top room of the monument and the other two in each wing section of the monument. They do not respawn after their initial spawn, thus there are a limited number of them per world. Elder guardians spawned with monuments do not naturally despawn, although they are removed along with other hostile mobs in peaceful difficulty.


Elder guardians drop the following items:

  • 0–2 prismarine shards – always. Affected by Looting: 1 more drop per level, for a maximum of 5.
  • 1 wet sponge – when killed by the player. Not affected by Looting.
  • One of the following:
    • 12 chance: a raw cod (cooked cod if killed by fire‌[JE only]). Affected by Looting: 0–1 more drops per level, for a maximum of 4.
    • 13 chance: prismarine crystals. Affected by Looting: 0–1 more drops per level, for a maximum of 4.
    • 16 chance: no drop.
  • 2.5% chance: a random fish. Affected by Looting: 1% more chance per level, for a maximum of 5.5% with Looting III. This drop uses the same chances that fishing uses, resulting in a 60% chance for raw cod, a 25% chance for raw salmon, a 13% chance for pufferfish, and a 2% chance for tropical fish.
  • 10 – when killed by a player or tamed wolf.


Elder guardians do not swim around as much as normal guardians. Elder guardians do not swim away when approached by a player it is targeting, unlike regular guardians. Like normal guardians, elder guardians attempt to attack both the player and squid.

The elder guardian's eye follows and stares at any nearby players, and always looks directly at its target. The eye still follows a player under the effects of a potion of invisibility or in spectator mode, but doesn't attack.

The elder guardian has three methods of attacking, including firing its laser, inflicting mining fatigue, and a defensive thorn-like attack.


The laser takes several seconds to charge, doing no damage and allowing the player to move away in the meantime. As it charges it turns from purple to bright yellow (thus acting as a warning indicator). Once charged, the beam flashes green, abruptly ends, and deals 8♥♥♥♥ damage on normal difficulty. The elder guardian swims around for a few seconds before firing again. The beam cannot be dodged and has a maximum range of approximately 14 blocks. Once the player is out of range, or if the beam is obstructed by solid blocks, the guardian's beam disengages from the player and deals no damage.

Inflicting Mining Fatigue[edit]

Once each minute, the elder guardian searches for any player within 50 blocks to afflict with Mining Fatigue III. When afflicted, the player sees a ghostly image of the elder guardian and hears a ghastly noise. The effect decreases a player's attack speed by 30% and decreases mining speed even more, for 5 minutes. The attack targets players through blocks, even underground, and a potion of Invisibility offers no defense.

The image of the elder guardian is a particle effect that can be recreated by issuing the command /particle minecraft:elder_guardian.‌[Java Edition only]

Spike attack[edit]

An elder guardian deals 2♥ of damage every time it is hit while its spikes are extended. If cornered, the elder guardian usually extends its spikes and fires at the player, even at point-blank range.


SoundSubtitleSourceDescriptionNamespaced IDTranslation keyVolumePitchAttenuation distance
Elder Guardian moansHostile Creatures? entity.elder_guardian.ambientsubtitles.entity.elder_guardian.ambient? ? 16
Elder Guardian flapsHostile Creatures? entity.elder_guardian.ambient_landsubtitles.entity.elder_guardian.ambient.land? ? 16
Elder Guardian cursesHostile Creatures? entity.elder_guardian.cursesubtitles.entity.elder_guardian.curse? ? 16
Elder Guardian diesHostile Creatures? Elder guardian death.oggsubtitles.entity.elder_guardian.death? ? 16
Elder Guardian diesHostile Creatures? entity.elder_guardian.death_landsubtitles.entity.elder_guardian.death? ? 16
Elder Guardian flopsHostile Creatures? entity.elder_guardian.flopsubtitles.entity.elder_guardian.flop? ? 16
Elder Guardian hurtsHostile Creatures? entity.elder_guardian.hurtsubtitles.entity.elder_guardian.hurt? ? 16
Elder Guardian hurtsHostile Creatures? entity.elder_guardian.hurt_landsubtitles.entity.elder_guardian.hurt? ? 16
Guardian shootsHostile Creatures? entity.guardian.attacksubtitles.entity,guardian.attack? ? 16

Data values[edit]

Elder guardians have entity data associated with them that contain various properties of the mob.


Icon Achievement In-game description Actual requirements (if different) Gamerscore earned Trophy type (PS)
Monster HunterAttack and destroy a monster.Kill a hostile mob or one of the following neutral mobs: enderman, zombie pigman, spider, cave spider.15GBronze
OverkillDeal nine hearts of damage in a single hit.Damage can be dealt to any mob, even those that do not have nine hearts of health overall.30GBronze
The Deep EndDefeat an Elder Guardian30GSilver


Icon Advancement In-game description Parent Actual requirements (if different) Namespaced ID


Monster Hunter
Kill any hostile monsterAdventureKill one of these 33 mobs. ‌In Java Edition 1.16.2[upcoming], piglin brutes can also be killed for this advancement. Other mobs, if any, may be killed, but are ignored for this advancement.adventure/kill_a_mob


Monsters Hunted
Kill one of every hostile monsterMonster HunterKill each of these 33 mobs. ‌In Java Edition 1.16.2[upcoming], piglin brutes are also required for this advancement. Other mobs, if any, may be killed, but are ignored for this advancement.adventure/kill_all_mobs



Java Edition
1.814w25aElder Guardian Revision 1.png Added elder guardians.
14w26aGuardians and elder guardians are no longer immune to lava and fire.
1.915w43aThe drop chances for raw fish and prismarine crystals have been changed for elder guardians. Instead of a 33% chance of fish then a 33% chance of crystals only if the fish drop failed with both percentages adjusted by Looting, it's 40% fish, 40% crystals, and 20% neither, with the amount increased by Looting.
Elder guardians drop dry sponges (on any kill).
15w43bThe drop chances for raw fish and prismarine crystals have been changed again for guardians. Now it's 50% fish, 33% crystals, and 16.7% neither.
15w43cSponge drop restored to requiring a player kill, but is still dry rather than wet.
1.1016w20aAdded elder guardian spawn egg.
pre2Removed elder guardian spawn egg.
1.1116w32aRe-added elder guardian spawn egg.
The entity ID has been changed from Guardian to elder_guardian. Removed Elder tag.
Their in-game name is now "Elder Guardian" instead of "Guardian".
16w33aElder guardians now drop wet sponges on player kills, rather than dry sponges.[1]
16w38aElder guardian's common drop of raw fish now drop as cooked fish, if killed while on fire.
1.1418w43aElder Guardian.png The texture of elder guardians has been changed.
Pocket Edition Alpha
0.16.0build 1Elder Guardian Revision 1.png Added elder guardians. They are considered boss mobs in the blog post for this update,[2] but in-game they behave the same as their Java counterparts.
build 5Added elder guardian spawn egg.
Pocket Edition
1.1.0alpha entity ID has been changed from guardian.elder to elder_guardian.
Bedrock Edition
1.10.0beta Guardian.png The texture of elder guardians has been changed.
Legacy Console Edition
TU31CU191.22Patch 31.0.1Elder Guardian Revision 1.png Added elder guardians.
1.90Elder Guardian.png The texture of elder guardians has been changed.
New Nintendo 3DS Edition
1.3.12Elder Guardian Revision 1.png Added elder guardians.


Issues relating to "Elder Guardian" are maintained on the bug tracker. Report issues there.


  • The elder guardian's eye is the "head" part of the mob's model, giving the illusion of a dynamic eye.
  • The elder guardian texture has the name "jeb" on it.
  • According to Jeb, elder guardians were introduced to encourage players to solve the temple maze rather than dig through it easily. He acknowledges there are ways around it, but players still have to solve the challenge in a different way.[3]
  • Also according to Jeb, the "jump scare" by an elder guardian is unintentional, instead, he added it to provide a visual cue as to why players get slowed down by mining fatigue.[3]
  • In Java Edition 3D Shareware v1.34, elder guardians drop blue keys.
  • In Bedrock Edition, elder guardians make their underwater death sounds if killed on land. They also, like guardians don't make the flopping sounds on Bedrock Edition.