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This article is about the normal guardian. For its larger gray variant, see Elder Guardian.
Guardian (Retracted).png
Health points

30♥ × 15



Attack strength

Easy: 4♥♥
Normal: 6♥♥♥
Hard: 9♥♥♥♥♥
Easy and Normal: 2♥
Hard: 3♥♥

Hitbox size

Height: 0.85 Blocks
Width: 0.85 Blocks


Ocean Monument

Guardians are pufferfish-like hostile mobs found in ocean monuments.


Guardians spawn naturally in ocean monuments. They require water to spawn. Specifically, they can spawn only if the spawning block and the block below the spawning block are both water (regardless of stationary water or flowing water), and the block above the spawning block is transparent (air, water, sign, slab, ice, etc.).

In Java Edition guardians spawn less often in ocean open to the sky than they do in covered areas (i.e. inside the monument). Specifically, spawning fails 95% of the time if the spawning water block is below sea level (Y=63 by default), all blocks between the spawning water block and sea level are liquid or fully transparent, and the block at sea level has a view of the sky. Above sea level, spawning fails 95% of the time if the spawning water block has a view of the sky.

In Bedrock Edition, guardians are structure spawns, spawning on 25 pre-determined spawning spots. The x-coordinate of each spawning spot is X+2, X+13, X+29, X+45, or X+55, where X is the western edge of the monument. Similarly, the z-coordinate is Z+2, Z+13, Z+29, Z+45, or Z+55. They spawn on the northwest corner of the spawning spot block, meaning they can spawn inside of a portal and get instantly sent to the nether. If their sky access is obstructed by a solid block, the guardians spawn significantly faster. Like all structure spawns, guardians belong to the cave cap.

Guardians spawn in between Y=39 (floor of the ocean monument) to Y=61 (1 block higher than the topmost block of the monument).


See also: Guardian farming

When killed, guardians always drop 0-2 prismarine shards. Looting increases the maximum prismarine shard drop by one per level, for a maximum of 5.

They also drop one of the following:

  • 40% chance of dropping a raw cod (cooked cod if killed by fire‌[JE only]). An additional 0-1 drops are added per level of Looting for a maximum of 4 cod with Looting III.
  • 40% chance of dropping prismarine crystals. An additional 0-1 drops are added per level of Looting for a maximum of 4 prismarine crystals with Looting III.
  • 20% chance of dropping neither.

Guardians also have a 2.5% chance of dropping a random fish as an extra drop in addition to the normal fish drop, when they are killed by the player. This chance is increased by 1% per Looting 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. A guardian on fire drops cooked fish.

Guardians also drop 10 when killed by a player or tamed wolf.


Guardians swim around in water, attacking any players or squid that come into sight. They swim in abrupt charges, moving their tail rapidly when doing so. When swimming, their spikes retract. When not swimming they sink slowly and their spikes extend and quiver.

The guardian's eye follows and stares at any nearby players, and always looks directly at its target. The eye does not follow completely unarmored players under the effects of a potion of invisibility, and the guardians cannot attack them.‌[Java Edition only] A player can wear a helmet or boots while under the effects of potion of invisibility and still not be targeted by the guardians.

Stationary guardians can be pushed by flowing water, but swimming guardians cannot. When pushed horizontally they move significantly faster than other mobs pushed by water.

When out of water, guardians squeak at the player while flopping about. They do not suffocate in air and can live indefinitely out of water. Their spikes are always extended when out of water.

Guardians, as aquatic mobs, are affected by the Impaling enchantment.


Guardians have two methods of attack: a laser and a defensive attack analogous to the Thorns enchantment. Unlike most other hostile mobs, a guardian does not follow a player who moves out of sight. Instead, it simply continues swimming until the player becomes visible again, and then starts charging its laser to attack.


The laser takes 2 seconds to charge, doing no damage in the meantime. Once charged, the beam deals 6♥♥♥ regular attack damage and additional 1♥ magic damage on normal difficulty. The latter can penetrate armor. Guardians swim around for a few seconds before firing again. If the target approaches while the guardian is firing its beam, it stops firing and swims away until it is at a comfortable range, at which point it continues attacking. The beam cannot be dodged or blocked by a shield. The laser has a maximum range of approximately 15 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.

Thorn-like attack[edit]

Guardians deal 2♥ damage each time it is hit when spikes are extended. If cornered, the guardian usually extends its spikes and fires at the player, even at point-blank range.


Sea Lanterns[edit]

Guardians are attracted to sea lanterns. They swim toward one and flock around it.


Guardians move toward a powered conduit, and stay around it, getting attacked by it, and can even be killed by it.


SoundSubtitleSourceDescriptionNamespaced IDTranslation keyVolumePitchAttenuation
Guardian moansHostile Creatures?
Guardian squeaksHostile Creatures?
Guardian diesHostile Creatures?
Guardian diesHostile Creatures?
Guardian flopsHostile Creatures?
Guardian hurtsHostile Creatures?
Guardian hurtsHostile Creatures?
Guardian shootsHostile Creatures?

Data values[edit]


Java Edition:

NameNamespaced IDTranslation key

Bedrock Edition:

NameNamespaced IDNumeric ID Translation key

Entity data[edit]

See also: Chunk format

Guardians have entity data associated with them that contains various properties.


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, zombified piglin, 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


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


Adventure, exploration, and combatKill any entity, or be killed by any entity.adventure/root


Monster Hunter
Kill any hostile monsterAdventureKill one of these 34 mobs. Other mobs, if any, may be killed, but are ignored for this advancement.adventure/kill_a_mob


Take Aim
Shoot something with an arrowMonster HunterUsing a bow or a crossbow, shoot an entity with an arrow, tipped arrow, or spectral arrow.adventure/shoot_arrow


Monsters Hunted
Kill one of every hostile monsterMonster HunterKill each of these 34 mobs. Other mobs, if any, may be killed, but are ignored for this advancement.adventure/kill_all_mobs


Note: This video is outdated in Java Edition, as raw fish, cooked fish and clownfish are now called raw cod, cooked cod, and tropical fish as of 1.13.


Java Edition
1.8June 3, 2014Jeb announces he is working on a hostile mob that lives underwater, though currently doesn't do much.
June 8, 2014Jeb provides more details into the upcoming mob - it has a ranged attack and is hostile to squid as well as the player. He recommended using a full set of diamond armor, potion of water breathing and respiration enchantment on Hard difficulty.
June 9, 2014Jeb posted a stylized guardian image to Reddit for use as a user flair. This was the first indication of how the guardian would look.
14w25aGuardian Revision 1.png Added guardians.
1.915w43aThe drop chances of guardians for raw fish and prismarine crystals have been changed. Instead of a 33% chance of fish and a 33% chance of crystals (only if the fish drop failed with both percentages adjusted by Looting), the percentages have been changed to 40% fish, 40% crystals, and 20% neither, with the amount increased by Looting.
15w47bSounds for guardians' defensive Thorns attack have now been added.
1.1116w32aThe entity ID has been changed from Guardian to guardian. The Elder tag has been removed.
16w38aThe common drop of guardians, raw fish, now drops as cooked fish, if killed while on fire.
1.1418w43aGuardian.png The texture of guardians has been changed.
Pocket Edition Alpha
0.16.0build 1Guardian Revision 1.png Added guardians.
Bedrock Edition
1.4.0?Guardians now attack fish.
1.6.0beta no longer attack fish.
1.10.0beta The texture of guardians has been changed.
Legacy Console Edition
TU31CU19 1.22 Patch 3Guardian Revision 1.png Added guardians.
PlayStation 4 Edition
1.90Guardian.png The texture of guardians has been changed.
New Nintendo 3DS Edition
1.3.12Guardian Revision 1.png Added guardians.


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


  • A guardian's eye is actually the "head" part of the mob's model. This gives the illusion of a dynamic eye.
  • Underwater, guardians emit deep, growl-like sounds, but on land, they emit high-pitched squeaks.
  • Guardians' laser-beam attacks are affected by the potion of strength, which normally affects only melee attacks.
  • When placed or spawned on a slime block, guardians start bouncing and continue and each bounce higher than the last, until each bounce brings the guardian to 17 blocks height.
  • In the texture file for the guardian, "jeb" is written in the bottom right corner.
  • If summoned with {NoAI:1}, the guardian's eye still follows the player.
  • In Bedrock Edition, guardians do not make the flopping sounds while on land.
  • If a guardian is placed in a 1.5 block tall area a top slab on the 2nd block, it flops faster.
  • Similarly to how piglin brutes and piglins are found in bastion remnants, elder guardians and guardians are found in ocean monuments.
  • World corruption can cause guardians to turn into Elder Guardians.