Tutorials/Defeating a woodland mansion

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A woodland mansion.

Woodland mansions are quite dangerous to deal with for unprepared players, as they are inhabited by Illagers (evokers and vindicators). For prepared players, however, they can yield great bounty once explored and defeated.

Find a mansion[edit]

Locating the mansion can be difficult, as they are very rare and may generate thousands of blocks away from the spawn point. Remember they only generate in dark forest biomes, where it is dark enough for mobs to spawn. You should bring at least 3 stacks of torches with you.

As shown in the picture, the easiest way to find a woodland mansion without cheating is by using a woodland explorer map, which you can get by trading with villagers.

Aside from stumbling upon it by coincidence while exploring, there are two ways for locating Woodland Mansions.

One way is to use a woodland explorer map, which will lead you to the mansion. Explorer maps can be bought from cartographer villagers for 16-28 emeralds and one compass. This is the easiest way of finding a woodland mansion without using cheats.

Another way is to use a command if cheats are enabled. (/locate Mansion in Java Edition, /locate mansion in Pocket Edition). If cheats are not enabled, or you do not want to cheat, then the above method is the only one.

After getting the woodland explorer map, check for a small white dot on the edges of the map. If the dot is on an edge, travel the opposite direction. For example, if the dot is showing on top, travel South instead of North. It is the same with the dot on the corner; if it is in the north-east direction, move south-west. The smaller the dot, the further away the mansion is located from the player. Pay attention to the map, when your map starts getting color, you are on the map's showing area. The top of the map is always North, and you can see which direction you are facing by noting the position of the sun and remembering that it rises in the East and sets in the West.

Woodland Mansion Exploration Checklist[edit]

Finding and conquering a woodland mansion can be difficult. The following is a suggested list of equipment you might need:

  • Elytra wings
    enchanted with Unbreaking III (Mending also recommended)
  • At least six stacks of
    firework rockets
    , with no
    firework star

  • Diamond sword
    enchanted with Sharpness V, Looting III, and Fire Aspect II (Knockback also recommended)

  • Bow
    enchanted with Unbreaking III, Power V, Flame, and Infinity (Punch also recommended)
  • Full set of
    diamond armor
    enchanted with Protection IV and Thorns II or III
  • Highly nutritious food, such as
  • A few
    golden apples
  • An axe (any kind but more durable ones are recommended)
  • A shield (will come very handy for blocking most of the damage one may sustain in a fight.
  • Building blocks (to build barricades and walls); preferably they should be easy to break, even without tools (such as dirt). However, don't use blocks that follow the laws of gravity (specifically sand, gravel, and concrete powder)
  • Torches (A least three stacks or so, not only will they be needed for lighting up the mansion but also the path to it as well).
  • A few doors (optional, but it pays to be prepared, you can use them to create an improvised "safe room" by walling of a section of a larger room or corridor and adding a door to it.)
  • Wood (can be broken up into wood planks which can be further broken up into other raw materials for crafting, in emergencies, a wooden sword crafted from this material can potentially save your life).
  • Potions (optional but can be quite helpful from time to time).
    • Strength (increases damage dealt, allows you to kill enemies faster).
    • Resistance (reduces incoming damage, improves survivability, works great in tandem with armor).
    • Invisibility (Be the ghost of the mansion, sneak past enemies without them knowing you were ever there).
      • Remove all armor when in use and put it back on when the potion wears off
      • Important note for invisibility potion users. Mobs will not attack you unless you directly touch them when using the invisibility potion. Your player model will disappear, rendering you fully invisible. If you wear any one piece of armor, mobs will be able to see you if you are at most 1 block away from them. For every additional piece of armor you equip, this distance will increase by 3, for a maximum view distance of 13 blocks if you are wearing a full set[1](compared to 16 blocks for most mobs without the effect). Also, having an item in your hand will also count as "armor" in this statistic.
    • Healing (useful for patching up yourself in between or during a fight, can sometimes even be a lifesaver)
    • Regeneration (improves survivability in general, allows faster recovery from injuries)
    • Speed (increases movement speed, allows you to escape if you are overwhelmed)
  • A shulker box or two to hold and transport loot in (optional but can be a good thing to have if you like hoarding stuff you find). Chests or an ender chest could work as well but preferably ender chest or shulker box, or you can bring a llama
  • Boats or minecarts (optional) to store the evokers or the vindicators in a certain place. Then you would be comparatively safe because they can't move around and attack you, but the evoker is sometimes difficult to catch because the vex that it had summoned nearly always rides the boat. Although the evoker can attack you from a distance away, the evoker will not attack you if it doesn't see you. Boats are recommended for storing because one boat can store two mobs and can place anywhere with enough space, Minecarts are recommended to transport them because minecarts uses rails to get around.

Exploring/Defeating the mansion[edit]

Getting in[edit]

Here are some methods to get inside of a woodland mansion:

Method 1 - Gentleman's entrance

Find the side of the mansion that contains the front door, and go through it.

Method 2 - Breaking and entering

Make your own door:

Use an axe to get in through a wall (or if you are feeling sneaky, go in through the floor or the window, and if you are feeling bold, try cutting your way in through the roof!).

Navigating the Mansion[edit]

Once inside, create a small shelter with a crafting table and chest, preferably an ender chest. Every piece of treasure you find will go into the chest. If you want enchantments you find on your armor or anything, bring an anvil.

When inside a mansion, always watch yourself and stay on guard. If you can, take two players. The mobs spawning in a mansion will quickly kill a player who is not paying attention, even with good equipment. Vindicators deal hefty amounts of damage, Evoker's fangs are not affected by armor, and creepers are a common problem in the poorly lit structure. This makes awareness extremely important.

There are two styles of advancing through the mansion, both of which are founded on good philosophy. The first method is to take the mansion floor-by-floor, killing all mobs and looting the chests, lighting up the way as you go. This method will reduce the spawning of hostile mobs in the first floor, which has no windows and therefore is subject to greater levels of darkness than other floors. Another good method is to immediately enter the second floor and find an evoker. Killing it will give you a totem of undying, and provide you with a bit more security.

The best way to be prepared in a mansion is to look at each room before entering - what does it contain? The most dangerous room, by far, in a mansion is the conference room, a room with a U-shaped table. This room always spawns 5 vindicators and an evoker. The second is a map room, which consists of a large carpet art piece on a table resembling a map, surrounded by chairs. This room spawns 2 vindicators and an evoker. The two rooms previously mentioned only occur on the second and third floors.

  • Focus on the most dangerous mobs first. Kill "very dangerous" mobs first (vindicators and evokers etc.), then target "semi-dangerous" mobs (skeletons, creepers and witches etc.) then kill all "less dangerous" mobs (zombies and spiders etc.).
  • Don't bother looking in the chests in storage rooms: they have nothing in them and looking through them leaves you vulnerable to ambushes.
  • If you plan to make the mansion your home, make sure to light up every room to prevent hostile mob spawning. Be particularly careful not to accidentally set anything on fire or let any creepers sneak up on you.
  • If you can, bring parrots, cats and tamed wolves with you. Parrots can indicate what mobs are around you by imitating their sounds, cats can scare away creepers, wolves can attack skeletons and defend you. Don't scare away when a parrot imitates the creeper's fizz sound!

Defeating the mansion[edit]

There are two safe systems to defeat the creatures inside without damaging valuable objects and drops (like TNT could do):

  • Building 3 or 4 or more iron golems in the hall, in front of the stairs, locking the entrance from outside, and waiting for the end of their dirty work. You may repeat the whole operation on every floor. There can be up to 3 floors, so you will need a good supply of iron.
  • Setting fire to the whole structure. The majority of mobs will die, illagers will receive fall damage (and sometimes they will burn to death); evokers will drop their totem and valuable blocks like diamond and lapis lazuli blocks will be revealed. For a uniform arson, we recommend to dig under the birch floor, to set up a system of tunnels whose ceiling must be that birch floor (4 or 5 are sufficient); for an even more accurate work, dark oaks all around the mansion should be cut; after that you can burn the floor from under with a flint and steel.

However, those systems are not totally safe: iron golems cannot come in secret rooms (or, in general rooms not connected with the main corridor). On the other hand, rooms like jails or blacksmith labs are not affected by fire, because they are made of stone.

Killing the mobs[edit]


Vindicators have 24 HP, slightly higher than that of most other mobs, but they hit hard, dealing a total of 19 damage on Hard difficulty. Their fighting style is the most simplistic out of all Illagers, they simply pull out an axe and try to run up to the player and hit them.

  • It is advised to attack them with a sword/axe and a shield. However, it is impossible to defend damage from an axe after 1.11.1.
  • Quickly attack them until they die.
  • They drop emeralds and have a chance of dropping their axe as well. In such a case, the dropped axe can also be used as a weapon.
    • However, if renamed to "Johnny", they will attack any mob in sight, making them useful for mob farms.
  • You can shoot them from a distance(highly recommend)


Evokers have the same amount of health as Vindicators (24 HP) but inflict far less damage, at just six damage at any difficulty. This doesn't mean, however, that they are less dangerous.

Evokers have a more unconventional fighting style. Upon seeing a player, they will run towards them until they are within 16 blocks of them. On getting within this radius they will most likely summon their offensive fang attack, summoning 16 fangs in a line towards the player. If the player moves towards them, they will cast a defensive fang spell, summoning a ring of fangs around them to repel attackers, assuming they have not attacked recently, otherwise they will run from the player. For this reason, it is best to use a bow in open space, and use a sword only if the evoker is cornered.

  • Try to keep a fair distance between the player and the evoker. The evoker has a defensive fang attack that deals damage in a small radius around the evoker.
  • The evoker has a second offensive fang attack, where it summons a line of fangs out of the ground to attack the player.
  • It can also summon vexes as support enemies, which makes killing him quickly important.
  • For a safer way of fighting evokers, you can try shooting them with a bow ( highly recommended. )


  • The vexes are summoned by evokers and act as support enemies. To prevent them from possibly swarming you, quickly kill the evoker before it can summon any, preferably from a distance in order to avoid the evoker's other attacks.
  • Vexes should be killed first if dealing with evokers from a distance as they can pass through walls and attack you from unexpected angles.
  • If in close contact with an evoker, kill the evoker first and then the vexes, the evoker's death will prevent any more vexes from being summoned.
  • It is best to attack when they are charging toward you, as their movements are otherwise very unpredictable.
  • If the vex disappears, do not worry, as it will despawn within 2 minutes of its summoning.

Common Strategies[edit]

There are some common methods used to raid mansions. The list below is in no way complete, so feel free to add your own ideas.

Melee Warfare[edit]

To a beginner player, rushing into a woodland mansion and killing mobs by hand might seem insane. However, to an end-game player with enchanted swords and armor, this might just be the easiest and fastest way to conquer one.

Required Items:

  • Enchanted diamond sword (highly recommended)
  • Armor ( at least iron)
  • Food
  • Golden apples ( recommended)
  • Axe and pickaxe
  • Fairly good fighting skills

Procedure: Using a sword or bow, attack the illagers head on. Take the mansion room by room, and punch holes in the walls to look for hidden rooms.

Water Defense[edit]

Required Items:

  • Sword
  • Bucket of Water
  • Bow and Arrows

Carry your water bucket in your hand. When you see a Vindicator, apply the water bucket to the floor right underneath you to make a water pool. Stand in the water and hit the Vindicators with your sword. Shoot any Evokers with your bow.

  • Tip: Dig up the carpet as you walk so you can see where you have been.

The Peaceful Raid[edit]

To some people, illagers might seem terrifying. With their brutal axe-slaying, and despicable magic, peaceful mode might seem a good idea. Warning: Once in peaceful mode, the illagers will never respawn.

Required Items:

  • Axe
  • Pickaxe

Procedure: Walk in, take what you want, and don't forget to check for secret rooms

Foolproof Attack[edit]

If those illagers are scaring you, then try this method! Based on the idea that all illagers can be hit with arrows, this strategy relies on raiding the mansion from above, clearing one room at a time.

Required Items:

  • Iron sword
  • Bow ( preferably enchanted)
  • Arrows ( bring a lot, or use infinity)
  • Gravel or Sand ( a few stacks should do)
  • Food
  • Axe and Pickaxe

Procedure: Climb to the top of the mansion. From there, build a small base with a bed and a few chests. Next, mine out the ceiling of a room. Using your bow, shoot the mobs from above. Drop gravel over the doorways to prevent more mobs from entering, collect the drops, then proceed to the next room. Soon, you will have raided the entire top floor. There can be up to 3 floors. Because the entire ceiling is broken off, you will easily find all of the secret rooms. In rooms with lots of illagers, drop gravel or sand around the vindicators and shoot the evoker. Then, kill the vindicators after collecting the drops from the evokers. This way, you won't lose drops while killing other mobs.


The mansion is made up of several rooms and some of them contain chests with loot in them.

The majority of the chests found in the mansion contain the same loot as chests found in a Dungeon would contain, however, there are some exceptions to this rule.

  • The chest generated in the "Allium room" will contain 8 Alliums.
  • The chest generated in the "Sapling farm room" will contain 28 Dark Oak Saplings.
  • The trapped chest generated in the "Fake End portal room" will contain 2 Ender Pearls (Note that this chest is linked to two blocks of TNT which will ignite if the trap is sprung).
  • The chest generated in the "Tree chopping room" will contain an Iron Axe enchanted with Efficiency I.

Two of the rooms that can generate in the mansion are the large and small storage rooms. These rooms contain shelves which house either 42 single chests in the Small storage room or 13 double chests (26 single chests) in the Large storage room. Despite the amount of chests present, they are all empty. Pay attention to walls, some have secret rooms which can have enchanted golden apples if your version of Minecraft still has them.

Aside from chests, there are also several valuable blocks that the player can scavenge from the mansion's rooms, for example: the "Obsidian room" and the "Lava room" both contain a Diamond Block, the "Illager statue room" contains a hidden Lapis Lazuli block, a lot of the furniture can dismantled into loot and the Jail rooms contain Redstone circuitry, just to name a few.


After the mansion is looted, there are a number of things you can do with it. You can turn it into a home, burn it down, systematically dismantle it to get extra resources, or just leave it as it is.

If you are planning on turning it into a home, make sure to light up all rooms and clear out any residual hostile mobs (if there are any left).

If you are planning on leaving it as it is, the illagers will respawn, making the mansion an excellent source of emeralds (vindicators might drop emeralds).

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