Tutorials/Defeating the ender dragon

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The ender dragon is one of the two bosses in Minecraft, the other being the wither. It lives in the End, and is usually considered the final boss of the game, despite it being added first‌[JE only].

The dragon is a highly anticipated fight as its downfall grants the player access to the End's outer islands, via an end gateway portal. It will also activate the exit portal and allow the player to return to the Overworld.

The dragon can also destroy all blocks excluding obsidian, indestructible blocks and end stone.

Item loadout[edit]

Defeating the ender dragon can require a lot of preparation (and more than double for hardcore mode), and depending on one's own skill level, different preparations may be needed. The following is the most ideal collection of equipment for a player fighting the ender dragon for the first time might bring:

Note: All gear with durability benefits from Unbreaking.

Item roles[edit]


The sword (diamond or netherite) is used to damage the dragon on its perch as it is immune to arrows at this time.

A secondary use will be for provoked endermen. Knockback is ineffective against the dragon, but helpful against Endermen. Fire Aspect will make Enderman more difficult to deal with since they teleport upon taking damage for every fire tick. Looting will enhance ender pearl drops.


The bow will be the player's main weapon; both for destroying the end crystals, and against the dragon while it is flying through the air. (Note that if the player adds Infinity to the bow, they will not be able to add Mending. Mending allows the bow to self-repair when the player collects experience. If the player has a large supply of Arrows, they should consider using Mending instead of Infinity.)

If you get the chance to collect a some snow blocks in your travels, it's a good idea to hang on to them until you either get Infinity or the means to craft or buy a large quantity of arrows. If that doesn't pan out, you can save your arrows for the dragon, and use snowballs to destroy most if not all the End Crystals. Prior target practice is always a plus, though the rapid rate of fire can make up for inaccuracy if you brought enough. Thrown eggs, and even ender pearls, can be used the same way against end crystals, but the point is to use something easier to obtain than arrows, not harder. Pearls, though valuable, do teleport you to the top of the obsidian tower after destroying the end crystal, if that is where you want to be, assuming you don't miss and teleport to somewhere you don't want to be.

If you get the chance to collect a supply of glowstone or glowstone dust, you can craft what arrows you have into spectral arrows, which make no difference against the Ender Dragon or End Crystals, but you end up with twice as much ammo.‌[Java Edition only]


If the player does not want to use a bow, a crossbow is a great alternative. The advantages of a crossbow are that it has a longer range and can inflict more damage than a regular bow. However, a crossbow cannot be enchanted with Infinity, so it is possible to run out of arrows while using it. On the plus side, with the Piercing enchantment the arrows fired can pass through non-mob entities, so it is possible (although difficult) to destroy multiple end crystals with a single shot. Fireworks are not recommended since they do not destroy the end crystals and don't deal any damage to the ender dragon.


The ender dragon has an attack strength of 15♥ × 7.5 with its head on hard difficulty. It is the third strongest direct attack of any hostile mob, topped by the vindicator and the ravager. In Bedrock Edition, it is tied with the wither’s dash attack making it the fourth-strongest. Therefore, the player should, but doesn't have to, wear a full set of diamond or netherite armor enchanted with Protection IV. Wearing armor increases your chances of not dying, but it isn't necessary. Plus, you don't have to wear diamond or netherite armor, you could wear iron or none if you are slightly more experienced. Since the main way of taking damage during the fight is fall damage, Feather Falling IV on the player's boots is absolutely necessary. Thorns is also recommended, because it will damage any provoked endermen when they attack the player. However, Thorns has a high enchantment weight, so be sure to add Unbreaking to the armor as well. The ender dragon can also deal incredible knockback, which the knockback resistance of netherite armor can somewhat mitigate.


When the player enters the End, they might spawn underground. A pickaxe (preferably diamond or netherite) will be necessary to dig up to the surface. It is also needed to break into the cages protecting some of the end crystals. If the player doesn't bring a pickaxe, it will take a long time to break both the iron bars and end stone. Silk Touch is necessary to reclaim the ender chest.

Healing items[edit]

Even if the player is well-protected, they will likely die at least once.

Golden apples are the most efficient healing item because they provide Absorption, which will protect the player from most damage while they are healing. Bring 20 or more.

Potent healing potions and extended regeneration potions are also recommended.

Enchanted golden apples can heal players more than regular ones, but they are extremely difficult to find, so save them only for emergencies.

The totem of undying can be used after the player explores a woodland mansion or stops a raid. Place in off-hand slot and upon fatal damage, the totem will explode and grant Regeneration with temporary Absorption. While equipped, you can't have a shield, which can be more important when blocking a charged attack.


There should never be a time when a player does not have food with them. Cooked porkchops, steak and pumpkin pie are some of the most nutritious foods possible, so bring at least a stack of either of these. Golden carrots are even better, but more expensive. A player can also bring cake in case they need to eat quickly as cake can be instantly placed down and eaten without delay. However, cake has low saturation and hunger-filling values so one is better off bringing splash healing potions for tight spots.


Potions are extremely useful in the fight to enhance the player’s performance. Because of the dragon’s knockback ability, fall damage, and the potential for being thrown off cliffs, extended slow falling potions are almost mandatory. Strength potions, leaping potions and swiftness potions can also be used to boost the player's abilities during the fight. Potions of the Turtle Master can also be used to reduce damage from end crystals, angry endermen and the dragon.

Potions can also be used for emergency healing. Golden apples can serve as a healing item, as they will allow them to regenerate while being protected by Absorption. However, they are only effective when the player takes a reasonable amount of damage. In the case of emergencies, such as the health being reduced to 4♥♥, healing potions are recommended because they will heal the player instantly. It is recommended to turn them into splash potions because they can be used faster than normal potions and will heal them as quickly as the player can throw them.

Regeneration potions can help the player regenerate faster than golden apples are able to, but they should only be used if the player takes damage over time as the dragon can inflict damage instantly.


Blocks can be useful for climbing up the towers. Harder blocks, such as cobblestone, are better than softer blocks. However, for the dragon fight, you will need dragon-proof blocks such as end stone or obsidian. It is recommended to use blocks to climb the taller towers and just shoot the end crystals on the short ones from the ground. Also, the player might need blocks to build to the top of the towers that have cages around the end crystals. Alternatively, they can throw an ender pearl to get to the top. The player can choose to use blocks or ender pearls to bridge to the central island if they spawned on an obsidian platform outside of the main island.


Ladders can be an alternative to blocks to climb the obsidian pillars as the player will not need to break the ladders to get down. Ladders are generally easier to place down unlike blocks in which case the player must jump every time.

Ender chest[edit]

An ender chest could potentially be used, because it can store items that the player will not use during the fight. It can only be reclaimed using a Silk Touch pickaxe. All ender chests in the world, including in different dimensions, are interconnected. So even if the player dies in the End, all of the items in the ender chest will be safe. If the player makes a new ender chest, all of the items that were originally in it will still be there.

Ender pearls[edit]

Ender pearls are extremely useful to have in the End. The player can use them to get up to the tops of tall towers, or if the spawn platform is away from the island, the player can use them so that they don't have to waste their blocks. Also, if they are high up in the air or get knocked off the edge, and don't have a slow falling potion, the player can use an ender pearl to teleport back to the island, (you can also use a slow falling potion to try to glide back to the edge). Unfortunately, pearls don't fall faster than the player at most velocities, so it's not a reliable method of avoiding fall damage, especially with large launches from the ender dragon. An alternative to slow falling potions is covering the main island with water or try placing the water before you hit the ground. Ender pearls can also be used to summon endermites to distract endermen.

Empty bottles[edit]

The player should bring plenty of glass bottles because they can be used to collect the dragon's breath. It can be collected from lingering purple clouds emitted when dragon fireballs slam into the ground or when the dragon breathes while perched. Since the dragon's breath inflicts magic damage, it can penetrate the player's armor, so be very careful around it.


A trident is highly recommended to have, but is difficult to obtain and not required. To obtain one the player must kill a drowned that is holding one, ideally with a Looting III sword. The trident will be damaged so you should get a second one and combine them on an anvil to fully repair it or use a mending enchantment. However, if the player throws their trident into the void it will despawn and not return to the player, even if the Loyalty enchantment is present on the item.‌[Java Edition only]

The trident can be used to boost the player up to the end crystals and easily destroy them. The player should enchant it with Riptide III so that they can boost themselves up to the end crystals. However, the player will need a bucket of water to do this, so the player should bring at least three water buckets.

Water bucket[edit]

A water bucket is extremely useful to have when the player fights the dragon, and even before the fight begins. It can be used to put out lava that is encountered while looking for the end portal. In the End, if the player falls off a tower and doesn't have enough ender pearls or slow falling potions, water can be used to break their fall. Water can also help them deal with provoked endermen. If an enderman is pursuing the player, dump the water at their feet (or yours) and the enderman will take damage and teleport away. The water will also neutralize the enderman and it will ignore the player again. Just make sure to not point the water at the Void because it will flow in that direction, pushing them into the Void.

If the ender dragon launches the player high up, then they can use the water bucket to negate fall damage. If the player has two water buckets and a pickaxe, then they can make an infinite water generator and gradually flood the end, stopping endermen and the fact that the dragon can launch the player at a high level no longer a threat the more flooded the end is, this also removes the use of pumpkins and MLG water buckets.


Beds can be extremely useful for dealing large amounts of damage to the dragon. Placing them down when the ender dragon is on the portal and blowing them up will take away up to 1/5 of the ender dragon's health. Although this is a good strategy it is extremely dangerous and you have to be careful. The main way to not take damage is going inside the ender portal, placing a bed, putting a block next to that bed and then right-clicking. Doing this will negate the damage to 0 as the explosion will not go down to hit your legs and the block you placed will block your head from being hit.

Alternatively, End Crystals may be used in place of beds. If you place several end crystals on the portal, wait for the dragon to swoop down and perch on the portal, then shoot the crystals with a bow or throw a egg/snowball at it. The dragon will take explosive damage, plus 10 extra points of damage if the crystal was destroyed while the dragon is charging from it. This is significantly safer than using beds, and end crystal explosions don't create fires that beds do. However, end crystals are more expensive than beds, and it will cause significant damage to the terrain.

The fight[edit]

Finding the portal[edit]

All players begin the ender dragon fight with eyes of ender because they are needed to locate and activate the end portal, which is found in a stronghold. To make one, the player will need one ender pearl and one blaze powder. The player will need at least 12 eyes of ender because up to 12 are needed to activate the portal and they may also need a few extra eyes to find the stronghold. This is because there is a 20% chance for an ender eye to shatter after it is thrown.


To find the stronghold, throw an eye of ender into the air, and it will float upwards in the direction of the nearest stronghold. It will then fall back to the ground and the player can pick it up and throw it again. However, the eye has a chance of breaking when the player throws it, so bring at least 15 eyes to have spares. Follow the ender eyes until they float downwards, which will indicate that the stronghold is underneath the player. If the eyes direct the player to a village, the stronghold will most likely be under the village's meeting point.‌[BE only]

Dig underground to find the stronghold. The player might dig into a cave or even a ravine, so it could be difficult to find. Use water to put out any lava that is in the way. Keep exploring the cave or keep digging until the player sees stone bricks, which will indicate that they have found the stronghold. Once the player breaks in, they should light up the area with torches.


A more efficient method for locating strongholds is to use the angles, in which eyes of ender move from two different points to mathematically calculate the coordinates of the stronghold. Given the coordinates of two points in the world, (X1, Z1) and (X2, Z2), and the exact angles at which eyes of ender move, A1 and A2 (all of which can be measured from the F3 debug screen), the stronghold is at the following coordinates:

X = (Z1 - Z2 - X2cot(A2) + X1cot(A1)) / (cot(A1) - cot(A2))

Z = (X2 - X1 - Z1tan(A1) + Z2tan(A2)) / (tan(A2) - tan(A1)),

where tan(x) is the tangent function and cot(x) is the cotangent. By using this method to find the starting point for searching, it is usually possible to find the stronghold using only three or four eyes of ender.

Portal room[edit]

Keep exploring the stronghold's hallways until the player finds the end portal room. Collect any chest loot that is found. As soon as the player sees the portal room, run in as quick as the player can, as an active silverfish spawner sits in the broken staircase that leads up to the portal. Kill all the silverfish in the room and destroy the spawner. Place a bed and set your spawn in case you die mid-fight, and a chest with extra gear. Block the entrance from the hallway so no mobs get in.

To activate the portal, simply insert an eye of ender into each portal frame. Some of the portal frames may already contain an eye of ender. Once all of the portal frames have been filled, the portal will activate and let out a loud, dragon-like roar, "reminding" that the player is about to fight the ender dragon.

The end portal room in a stronghold, with the portal activated.

Since the trip to the End is one-way, don't even think about jumping into the portal until the Hotbar contains the following:

  • Sword
  • Bow or crossbow
  • Pickaxe
  • Golden apples
  • A slow falling potion
  • Ender pearls
  • Food (a full-stack)
  • Dragon proof blocks
  • Empty bottles

Put all of the items that the player will not use in the fight, such as the loot found in the stronghold, into the ender chest. Pick up the ender chest using a Silk Touch pickaxe. Make sure the player is wearing all of the armor, but instead of the helmet, wear the carved pumpkin. Holding the ender pearls, enter the portal when ready.

Entering the End[edit]

When the player jumps into the portal, they will instantly get teleported to the End, giving them no time to escape. When they arrive in the End, they will spawn on a 5×5 obsidian platform. The platform usually generates on the surface of the island, so the player can just walk off. If it generates underground, dig up to the surface using a pickaxe. If it is away from the island, throw an ender pearl to the island to save extra blocks.

Get to the center of the island as quickly as possible, and if they see the dragon diving at them, quickly jump out of its way. Drink a slow falling potion in case of getting knocked off. Before fighting, they will need to do a few things.


Because falling into the void will kill the player and destroy their gear, the player should stay as close to the center of the island as possible, or at least inside the circle of towers. The player should also avoid any holes on the island. Due to the dragon's knockback ability, they should stay at least 30 blocks away from any edge. If they get knocked off, they should immediately throw an ender pearl back up. If they are quick enough, it is possible for them to teleport out of the void and back onto the island. Chances are better if the ender pearls are held in a slot of the Hotbar that the player can instantly access, or if the player has drunk a slow falling potion.


It is recommended to bring backups with the player because they will deal with the endermen while they are taking on the dragon. They may also clear the area in the middle of the island so that the player will have more space to move around. Snow golems or iron golems make the best backup because they have stronger and more effective attacks than tamed wolves. The only difference between the two is that iron golems will actually attack the endermen, while snow golems will only chase them away. Bring enough materials to spawn at least five golems.

Until they have spawned their golems, the player is recommended to wear a carved pumpkin to avoid the endermen. The best time to spawn them is when the dragon is resting on its perch, as it will not attack the player or their golems. The player should also spawn them to the sides, in case it releases the dragon's breath.

After the reinforcements are spawned, reorganize the inventory so that the Hotbar contains the following:

  • Sword
  • Bow or crossbow
  • Pickaxe
  • Golden apples
  • A slow falling potion
  • Ender pearls
  • Blocks (a full-stack)
  • Food (a full-stack)
  • Empty bottles

As soon as the hotbar is organized properly, quickly take off the pumpkin mask and put on the helmet. Now the player can begin the showdown with the dragon.

Destroying the end crystals[edit]

Destroying the end crystals is a key part of the battle, because they heal the dragon. With all of the crystals active, the dragon will recover faster than the player could ever hope to damage it under normal conditions. Nevertheless it is possible to kill the dragon with all the crystals left with a technique known as one-cycling, consisting of repeatedly exploding beds while the dragon comes down for her perch, as few as 4 beds can be used but killing the dragon in such way requires a lot of training. It is possible to defeat the dragon while some crystals remain, provided the dragon spends enough time away from them, but it is best to destroy all of them. One end crystal sits atop each obsidian pillar. There are usually eight to ten towers of different heights arranged in a circle around the empty exit portal. The crystals on the tallest towers may be difficult to see, but the healing beam they emit when the dragon is nearby will give away their location. Try to destroy a crystal while it is healing the dragon because the dragon will take 10♥♥♥♥♥ damage if the player does this.

The ender dragon being healed by an end crystal.


The easiest way to destroy the crystals is to shoot them with the bow or crossbow. The player should position themselves so that they can see one at least partially, aim their shot just above the crystal from their view, and adjust their aim if needed. When destroyed the crystal will generate a massive explosion. Be aware that the player might have destroyed the crystal even if they did not see the explosion. The player can know that it has been destroyed by the explosion sound. If the bow does not have the Infinity enchantment, snowballs could be used to save on arrows. The player should always shoot the crystals on the shortest towers because they are the easiest to shoot, and if they are using a crossbow they should check how many arrows they have every now and then.


Attempting to climb to the tops of the towers is extremely dangerous. Even if the player builds up using a dragon-proof material, such as end stone, the dragon can easily knock the player off while they are climbing. Because of this, it is recommended to use Potions of Slow Falling if you plan to climb the towers. It is necessary to get up to the top of the caged towers somehow, because shooting them from the ground is ineffective. If you choose to use the method of pillaring up with blocks, place water below so that in the event of you getting knocked off the platform, you can land safely in the water. However, you can shoot them from the ground through the iron bars. ‌[JE only]

One way to climb the towers is to use twisting vines. The dragon can destroy these, but you can easily replace them. Bring multiple stacks of bone meal if you plan to use twisting vines.

It is quicker and safer to use ender pearls than the player's extra blocks because the dragon may knock them off while building up. One trick to measure the ender pearl shot is to fully charge the bow or crossbow and shoot an arrow just over the top edge of the cage. If the player throws an ender pearl at the exact same angle it will strike one block below the arrow's trajectory, teleporting the player to the side of the cage. Break into the cage with a pickaxe. If the player has strong enough armor and is affected by Absorption, hit the caged crystal with the sword. Otherwise, build a few blocks away from the crystal and shoot it with the bow or crossbow.

Once the caged crystal has been destroyed, don't go back down because some towers are taller than the caged ones. Build a few blocks above the caged tower and shoot the taller ones with the bow or crossbow. If the dragon knocks the player off, and they are not affected by Slow Falling, they should use water or an ender pearl to break their fall. Throw an ender pearl back to the top of the caged tower and try to shoot the taller ones again. The player could also throw a pearl to the tops of the tall towers and destroy the crystals with their sword. If the player is on the tallest tower, they can check how many crystals have been destroyed and how many remain. It is also a good spot to snipe the dragon.

One of the, if not the best way to climb to the top of a pillar is to use a Riptide trident, the higher level the better. It's recommended to have a trident enchanted with Riptide (preferably level 3), a few buckets of water (about 3-6 depending on the level of Riptide on your trident and the height of the pillar) and a Potion of Slow Falling. Using the block of water, you can propel yourself into the air, and as you begin to fall, place another bucket of water and propel yourself further. Having Slow Falling will make this much safer and easier, as not only does it prevent you from falling and taking damage, it also gives you more time to place your water bucket down when in the middle of the pillar, which will decrease the overall distance and time you take to travel to the top of the pillar. After climbing to the top of the pillar, simply break the crystal and fall back down, collecting the water as you go. If you have more water, you can propel yourself to nearby pillars as well, although you will have to eventually return to the initial pillar to collect your water. One downside of using this method, however, is how expensive it is to obtain a Riptide III trident, and in addition to that, water buckets take up a lot of space in your inventory.

Killing the dragon[edit]

If the player is not sure that they have destroyed all of the crystals, let the dragon fly away. If the player sees a healing beam, they will know that there is a crystal left. Once the last crystals have been destroyed the player can start to attack the dragon. The player can also swap out the extra blocks with the water bucket because they will not need the blocks anymore. There are many ways to attack the dragon, but there are many things to watch out for, too.


The dragon has three types of attacks: body attacks, the breath attack, and dragon fireballs. The more crystals the player has destroyed, the more often the dragon will attack them. It will inflict 15♥ × 7.5 damage if it hits the player with its head, but its wings will only inflict 5♥♥♥ damage. The dragon's breath will inflict 3♥♥ damage per second. The dragon has an extremely high knockback ability and can throw the player into the air to fatal heights, so they should keep drinking their slow falling potions when they run out. They will make the player immune to all fall damage.

Keep track of health at all times. If the player takes at least 6♥♥♥ damage at a time, hide behind a tower and eat a golden apple. They should use their healing potions if they are on the brink of death to recover instantly. If the totem of undying in their hand goes off, and they have another totem, quickly throw it in the off-hand and resume fighting immediately.

Dragon's breath[edit]

The ender dragon perching and releasing the dragon's breath.

It is extremely useful to collect the dragon's breath during the fight because it can be used to make lingering potions, which are recommended to have if the player wants to fight the dragon again, or if they want to fight the wither (if you chose to fight the dragon first).

To collect the dragon's breath, wait for the dragon to perch and do its breath attack or shoot a dragon fireball, either of which will puff out into lingering purple clouds. The only difference is that the dragon's breath comes instantly from the breath attack, whereas the player must wait for the fireball to slam into the ground. To collect it, simply hold out an empty bottle and scoop up the clouds in the same way the player would fill a bottle with water. However, the player should avoid making contact with the clouds, because the clouds will hurt them. Armor cannot protect the player from damage from the dragon's breath, because it counts as magic damage. However, enchantments such as Protection will. The dragon's breath is stackable, so the player should collect as much as possible.


While the dragon is flying the player can shoot it with their bow or crossbow. However, the dragon is difficult to shoot because it can fly fast, and shots will miss if they don't line up properly. It is recommended to shoot at a spot in the dragon's flight trajectory, which is the area in front of it. Try to mainly shoot it in the head because the dragon takes the most damage on its head.

The more crystals the player has destroyed, the more often the dragon will dive at the portal. When it's hovering over the portal, it is immune to arrow damage, and the player will be forced to use their sword. It is recommended to get as many critical hits as possible because the player can inflict more damage this way. It is also suggested to drink a strength potion because the player will inflict more damage using the strength the potion provides.

The player will begin to notice a pattern in the dragon's behavior after a few minutes. It will dive at the portal once for every circle, so they should make sure that they always have the strength from the potions when the dragon perches. Remember the pattern of the dragon’s attacks, so that they will be efficient for the rest of the battle.

After you have gotten rid of all the ender crystals, ender pearl to the ender portal. If you stay in the un-activated portal every time the dragon charges you can go behind the center pillar, the dragon will hit the center pillar and you'll be safe. Just wait until the dragon comes and hit it with your sword. Beds are also useful, but can deal explosion damage to the player. Since you cannot sleep in the end, if you try to sleep, the bed will explode. It is possible to use this to your advantage, and provides an efficient way to kill the ender dragon.

Once 200♥ × 100 damage has been inflicted, the dragon will die and drop four un-matchable rewards.

The rewards[edit]

When killed, the dragon will float upwards and disintegrate, with bright purple beams of light erupting from its body. It will then explode and cause a sound effect to play that gradually fades away into the infinite darkness of the End, leaving almost no trace that it was ever there. Four rewards will then appear.


What the ender dragon looks like a few seconds after being killed.

After the dragon disappears, experience orbs will rain from the sky. These orbs can take the player from level 0 to level 68, which is worth 12,000 experience points. Some of the orbs may fall into the portal, so run a few laps around the portal and then sneak on the rim of the portal to grab some more. Since it takes progressively more experience to gain a level at higher levels, they will have enough to make over ten level 30 enchantments. The player doesn't have to get enchantments that they will use; they can simply enchant extra equipment to use as a backup set. The best time for the player to enchant extra equipment is as soon as they go back home, in case they die and lose all of the precious levels they have earned (unless you have a lot of experience farms to get more levels than that).

Dragon egg[edit]

The second reward is the dragon egg. It sits on top of the portal when it first appears. However, it cannot be broken directly, as the egg will teleport if the player attempts to do so.

Instead, touch the egg once and let it teleport to a block of end stone. If the player can't find it, follow the purple teleportation particles. To pick up the egg, place a torch two blocks underneath it, and break the end stone block it is sitting on. Since the egg obeys the law of gravity, it will fall onto the torch and break as a collectible item. If you forget to bring a torch with you, take one from the exit portal frame.

Alternatively, if the player has a piston and a source of redstone (such as a lever), place the piston facing the egg and power it with the redstone source. The egg will still break as a collectible item. To prevent the egg from falling into the portal, cover the portal with blocks.

If the player uses either of these strategies, they will get the dragon egg successfully. It currently has no use other than as a trophy to show that the player has defeated the ender dragon, but it can serve as a beautiful decoration or an addition to a trophy room at the player’s base.

End gateway portal[edit]

Perhaps the biggest reward of defeating the ender dragon is the end gateway portal, which generates after the dragon dies. The player cannot walk through it normally because it is too narrow to walk through. The easiest way to enter it is to throw an ender pearl through it, but it is also possible to sprint-swim through it in if the player has a water bucket or fly through it with an elytra if the player already has one. In Village and Pillage, the player can also use trapdoors to crawl through the portal. This portal is sometimes considered the only reason to need to fight the dragon, because it gives the player easy access to the End's outer islands, which is the only place where the player can find end cities, shulkers, chorus trees, the elytra and the dragon head. Without the end gateway, they are about 1,000 blocks away from the main fighting area against the dragon (in any direction). Note that you can live in the outer islands and just wander around, and you can find a lot of treasure. If you go too far and you want to get back, you can jump into the void as long as you have "keep inventory" on.

Exit portal[edit]

Since the fight takes place in the End, the most important reward is the exit portal, which is the only way back home. It appears as soon as the player enters the End, but only activates when the dragon is killed. The portal looks like a fountain made of bedrock, with torches on the sides, and the "water" of the fountain is made of the portal blocks that will take the player back home.

When the player jumps into the portal, they will be treated to the end poem, which will tell them that they have basically "completed" the game. Even though it can be skipped, it is still highly recommended to read it. They will then respawn in the Overworld at their respawn point, which can be the world spawn point, a respawn anchor, or the last bed the player had slept in. The player can then safely return to their base.

The rematch[edit]

To have a rematch with the ender dragon, the player must respawn it using end crystals. To make one, the player will need seven pieces of glass, an eye of ender and a ghast tear. The player will need to go to the Nether to get some of these materials.

To respawn the dragon, place four end crystals one on each side of the exit portal. The crystals that are placed will instantly deactivate the portal, shoot beams at the tops of the towers, and reset the crystals and cages on the towers. Afterward, all of the crystals will shoot beams into the sky in harmony. The player will hear an extremely loud roar and see a massive explosion, which will resurrect the dragon and begin the fight again.

To respawn the dragon, place the end crystals in the configuration shown in the image below.

The positions of end crystals on the exit portal needed to respawn the ender dragon.

Subsequent dragons will drop less experience and will not drop another dragon egg, but it is still useful because it is the only way to obtain more dragon's breath. Also, it will create another end gateway, which can be used to find more end cities more easily, but the player will need to prepare the same equipment all over again. However, if the player does want to fight again, the player can use new equipment that cannot be used in the first battle.