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Health points

20 (Heart.svgHeart.svgHeart.svgHeart.svgHeart.svgHeart.svgHeart.svgHeart.svgHeart.svgHeart.svg)

Armor points

2 (Armor.svg)

Attack strength

Easy: 2 (Heart.svg)
Normal: 3 (Heart.svgHalf Heart.svg)
Hard: 4 (Heart.svgHeart.svg)


Light level of 7 or less and 1×2 space anywhere but transparent blocks (half blocks, glass, TNT etc).
Husks: Desert, Desert Hills, Desert M

First appearances

See History


See Drops

Natural equipment

Adult: 5
Baby: 12

Internal ID

PC: (Zombie: 54, Zombie Villager: 27, Husk: 23)
PE: (Zombie: 32, Zombie Villager: 44, Husk: 47)

Entity ID

zombie, zombie_villager, husk

Zombies are common, undead hostile mobs that come in many variants.



In the Overworld, zombies spawn in groups of 4 at a light level of 7 or less. In desert biomes, all zombies exposed to the sky will have an 80% chance to be replaced by husks, a zombie variant. Zombies that are not husks have a 5% chance to spawn as a zombie villager while all zombie variants also have a 5% chance to spawn as a baby zombie type. Baby zombies have an additional 5% chance of spawning as a chicken jockey.


If a player is in a village with at least 10 doors and 20 villagers at midnight, up to 20 zombies may be spawned near the edge of the village regardless of light level or transparent blocks. It can happen in any biome, even if it is Mushroom Island.

Monster spawners

Zombies can spawn from monster spawners inside dungeons.


Zombie villagers

A zombie villager farmer with an enchanted iron sword.
Zombie Infection! The disease is spreading! "Uuuuhh, ooohhh"...
The Pretty Scary Update Promo Poster

Zombie villagers comprise 5% of all spawned zombies (1% in desert, desert hills and desert M biomes, including husks). They behave as ordinary zombies, but their character model's head and face is reminiscent of that of a villager, shaded with a darker green hue. Zombie villagers retain their professions and clothes, which have a tattered appearance. In the Console Edition, their clothing will be the same that other zombies wear.

Zombie villagers can also result from zombie attacks on villagers. If any type of zombie kills a villager, there is a chance that the villager will transform into a zombie villager (100% on Hard difficulty, 50% on Normal, 0% on Easy).

Zombie villagers can be cured by using a golden apple on them while they are under the effects of Weakness, which can be applied using a splash potion of Weakness thrown by the player or a witch or a tipped arrow. A loud hissing sound will be heard if successful, and the zombie villager will begin to shudder. The curing process will take 2–5 minutes, during which time the zombie villager behaves as normal. While the zombie is being cured, it will have the Strength I effect in normal difficulty (or Strength II on hard difficulty), making it more important to isolate and restrain the zombie.

  • Cured villagers do not retain any trades they had before they became infected.
  • If the zombie villager is wearing any armor or wielding tools or weapons, those items disappear when the villager is cured.
  • During the curing process, it is often a good idea to keep the zombie villager away from any other zombies, because the other zombies will attack it after it is cured.
  • Conversion can be sped up by around 4% by surrounding the zombie villager with iron bars and/or bed blocks within a 9×9×9 cube centered on the zombie villager.[1]

A zombie villager cannot be cured by switching from Easy, Normal or Hard difficulty to Peaceful; they will simply despawn like all other monsters.

Baby zombies

A baby zombie.
An armored baby zombie riding a chicken.

Baby zombies make up 5% of zombie spawns. They behave similar to regular zombies, with the following oddities:

  • They do not burn in sunlight.[2]
  • They are faster than the normal zombies, yet they have the same HP as normal zombies. This makes the baby zombies more dangerous than their bigger counterparts.
  • The noises they make are higher-pitched than normal zombie sound effects.
  • They can sometimes ride chickens. On the Pocket Edition, they can ride other passive mobs, as well as other zombies and spiders.
  • Baby zombie villagers will turn into baby villagers if cured.
  • Worn armor shrinks to fit their body size.
  • They are able to fit through 1×1 block gaps.
  • They give more Experience Orbs when killed by the player than normal zombies.

Baby zombie villagers are spawned when a zombie kills a baby villager, the chance of infection being the same as adult zombie villagers. Baby zombie villagers also spawn naturally, but the combined chance (5% villagers × 5% babies) is very low at 0.25% of all newly spawned zombies. Baby husks can also spawn in warm biomes, as well as husk chicken jockeys.

Armed zombies

File:2012-10-04 20.04.18.png
A zombie with full golden armor and rotten flesh as held item, considered as a melee weapon.

Along with skeletons, some zombies are capable of picking up dropped items. These zombies will automatically hold any item they come across (except that jack o'lanterns, mob heads, and pumpkins will be worn on their heads), but if those items happen to be armor, weapons, or tools, the zombie will use them. If they encounter another similar item, they will pick it up and drop their previous item:

  • if the new item is armor or a sword and the old item was not (for example, zombies prefer swords to pickaxes, and helmets to pumpkins),
  • if both items are armor/swords and the new item is better damage-wise (reduces more damage for armor, or inflicts more damage for swords),
  • if both items are armor/swords with the same damage reduction/infliction, the new item has NBT tags while the old does not or the new item is more damaged than the old item, or
  • if both items are bows and the new item has NBT tags while the old does not.

Items dropped by mobs in exchange for another cannot be picked up by players or mobs for 10 game ticks (0.5 seconds, barring lag), but can be picked up by hoppers.

Armor worn by zombies is not damaged from most damage sources, which means it cannot "wear out" the way player armor does. Helmets (not blocks like pumpkins) on zombies can wear away and break if the zombie is exposed to daylight or has an anvil or other falling block dropped on its head. Zombies also have a natural armor rating of 2 (Armor.svg), which gives 8% damage reduction from most sources.

Some zombies which can pick up items spawn already in possession of such items, and those items may also be enchanted. The chances of that event are listed below. Zombie villagers can also spawn naturally with armor, weapons or tools. If a zombie spawns wearing multiple pieces of armor, the armor will never be mismatched (i.e. all pieces will be made of the same material).

Chances of zombies wearing or picking up armor, per difficulty
Easy Normal Hard
Can Pick Up Loot 0% 0%-55%[note 1] 6.875%-55%[note 1]
Armor 0% 0%-15%[note 1] 1.875%-15%[note 1]
Armor Enchantment[note 2] 0% 0-50%[note 1] 6.25%-50%[note 1]
Weapon[note 3] 1% 1% 5%
Weapon Enchantment[note 2] 0% 0%-25%[note 1] 3.125%-25%[note 1]
  1. a b c d e f g h i Value is based on the regional difficulty.
  2. a b Enchantment is the same as on an enchantment table at level 5–22.[note 1]
  3. 13 chance of an iron sword, 23 chance of an iron shovel

If a zombie does spawn with armor, the chances of specific armor are as follows:

Chances of different armor pieces, per difficulty
Armor Easy & Normal Hard
Helmet 100% 100%
Helmet & Chestplate 75% 90%
Helmet & Chestplate & Leggings 56.25% 81%
Full set 42.19% 72.9%

The chances of it being of a particular material are:

Chances of different armor types
Armor Type Chance
Leather 37.06%
Gold 48.73%
Chain 12.90%
Iron 1.27%
Diamond 0.04%

Any zombie that spawns with equipment (picked-up items don't count) will give 1–3 extra experience points per item.


A husk.
A husk and baby variant.

80% of zombies spawned directly under the sky in desert, desert hills, and desert M biomes will be husks. Like normal zombies, there is a 5% chance for baby husks to be spawned, and an additional 5% chance to spawn as a chicken jockey.

They behave similar to regular zombies, with the following differences:

  • They do not burn in sunlight.
  • They will apply
    to any player it hits. This effect lasts for 7 × floor (regional difficulty) seconds.
  • They do not have a villager counterpart.
  • They are visually 2 pixels taller than Zombies, but have the same hitbox.
  • Their voices are more raspy than their normal counterparts.
  • They avoid water.


When killed, zombies drop 0–2 pieces of rotten flesh.

Zombies will rarely drop iron ingots, carrots, potatoes, and any naturally spawned equipment. Any picked-up equipment has 100% chance of dropping and will drop with the same damage level it had when picked up, while any naturally spawned equipment has a 8.5% (9.5% with Looting I, 10.5% with Looting II and 11.5% with Looting III) chance of dropping and will drop with a random durability.

A zombie will drop its head if killed by a charged creeper's explosion.

Zombies drop 5 experience when killed by a player or tamed wolf, and an extra 1–3 experience if the zombie has equipment. If the zombie is a baby, it will drop an additional 7 experience.


If a zombie wearing a pumpkin or jack o'lantern is killed using a tool enchanted with Looting, there will be a chance equivalent to the level of Looting used to drop the pumpkin or jack o'lantern, up to a maximum of a 3% chance of a drop.


Attacking the player

Zombies can deal damage through closed doors.

Zombies spawn in groups of 4 and will pursue the player on sight from 40 blocks away, as opposed to 16 blocks in other hostile mobs. The detection range of zombies is reduced to half of their normal range (20 blocks) when the player is wearing a zombie mob head (except in the Console or Pocket Editions). Zombies will attempt to avoid obstacles, including sheer cliffs and lava, and will try to find the shortest path towards the player.[3] Unlike skeletons, zombies do not try to avoid being hit, and continue to pursue the player even when being attacked. Zombies can sometimes deal damage through a closed door, as shown in the picture to the right. Like most mobs, zombies will always float on water, even if their target is below them.

Burning under daylight

At dawn, generally when the sun is 15 degrees or more above the ground (that is, when the moon can no longer be seen), most zombies will catch fire and burn once exposed to direct sunlight. They won't burn:

  • if they're in a sufficiently shaded area: a sunlight level of 11 or less;
  • if they're in water;
  • if they're caught in cobwebs;
  • if they're wearing head armor (but the armor will take damage);
  • if they're baby zombies;
  • or if they're husks.

Zombies may make some attempt to seek out shade during the day, or enter bodies of water to protect themselves from burning up, but will exit protective areas to chase a nearby player or villager.

If they attack an entity while burning, they may set it on fire, with a (30 × regional difficulty)% chance, and with a 2 × floor(regional difficulty) second duration. If wearing armor enchanted with Thorns while burning they may set players attacking them on fire with thorns damage alone.

Reactions to status effects

As zombies are undead mobs, they are harmed by the status effect Healing and healed by the status effect Harming. They are also unaffected by regeneration and poison.

Picking up items

A zombie holding an item it picked up will not despawn when left alone.

Attacking villagers

A zombie trying to break the door down instead of taking an alternative path.

Zombies will attack villagers within 42 blocks, and they can always see villagers through walls. Once a zombie has focused on a villager, the zombie will ignore any other villagers and the player, until its target is dead or a mob or player attacks the zombie.

Breaking doors

Zombies in pursuit of a target will bang on closed wooden doors, and on Hard (and Hardcore) difficulty, up to 14.5% of them (depending on regional difficulty) can succeed in breaking them down. Otherwise, the door will crack, but not break. Iron doors are always safe.

Attacking iron golems

Zombies will attack iron golems within 42 blocks.


On all difficulty levels, damaged zombies will also call all other zombies within a 67×67×21 to 111×111×21 area[n 1] centered on the attacked zombie to target the attacking player, like zombie pigmen.

On Hard difficulty, zombies can spawn additional zombies to “help” when damaged. Each zombie has a "likeliness to call reinforcements" statistic which ranges from 0–10%, and "leader" zombies (0–5% depending on regional difficulty) get a bonus of 50–75 percentage points to the stat. When the zombie is damaged by an entity or is damaged while targeting an entity, up to 50 attempts will be made to randomly choose a spawn location (0 or ±7–40 blocks away in all three axes) that is above a block with a solid top surface, has light level 9 or lower, has no players within 7 blocks, and has no colliding entities or blocks at which to spawn the reinforcement. Both the damaged zombie and the new zombie will have a 5 percentage point penalty to their "likeliness to call reinforcement" stat, making it less likely that an infinite number of zombies will spawn.

These effects can be negated by killing the zombie in as few hits as possible, by using environmental damage such as cactus or lava, or by avoiding them completely.

Data values

See also: Chunk format

Zombies, zombie villagers and husks have entity data associated with them that contain various properties of the mob. Their entity IDs are zombie, zombie_villager and husk respectively.

Zombie villager

  • Entity data
    • Tags common to all entities see Template:Nbt inherit/entity/template
    • Tags common to all mobs see Template:Nbt inherit/mob/template

    •  IsBaby: 1 or 0 (true/false) - true if this zombie is a baby. May be absent.

    •  CanBreakDoors: 1 or 0 (true/false) - true if the zombie can break doors (default value is 0).

    •  Profession: 0: farmer, 1: librarian, 2: priest, 3: blacksmith, 4: butcher, 5: nitwit (default value is 0).

    •  ConversionTime: -1 when not being converted back to a villager, positive for the number of ticks until conversion back into a villager. The regeneration effect will parallel this.

    •  ConversionPlayerLeast: Least significant bits of the Universally Unique IDentifier of the player who started curing the zombie, to be joined with ConversionPlayerMost to form a unique ID.

    •  ConversionPlayerMost: Most significant bits of the Universally Unique IDentifier of the player who started curing the zombie, to be joined with ConversionPlayerLeast to form a unique ID.


Icon Achievement In-game description Actual requirements (if different) Availability Xbox points earned Trophy type (PS)
Xbox PS Bedrock Nintendo

Zombie DoctorCure a zombie villager.Throw a splash potion of weakness at a zombie villager and give it a golden apple (by facing the zombie and pressing the use key with a golden apple in your hand)Xbox OneYesYesYes40GGold
Xbox 360Alt20G



0.24_02 Zombies were the second mob to be added to Minecraft after humans. They could run as fast as the player. Zombies would occasionally appear wearing armor, but this had no protective effect on their health. When killed, zombies gave 80 points each to the player, but they did not drop their armor. They also had arm swinging animations when they attacked.[4]
?Zombies' armor was removed, as well as their arm swinging attack animations.
February 19, 2010 Zombies dropped 0–2 feathers upon death. Before chickens were added in Minecraft, Notch confessed[5] that he made zombies drop feathers because he had no idea what they should have dropped when killed.
1.8 Zombies now drop rotten flesh instead of feathers.
Official release
1.0.0 Beta 1.9-pre4 Zombies could now be harmed by splash potions of healing, and healed by splash potions of harming. They also became immune to poison and regeneration.
1.2.1 12w03a The zombies' AI was improved, giving them a much better sense of direction when pursuing the player, allowing them to navigate obstacles, and even small mazes if constructed, to get to the player. They were also given the ability to 'see' through windows, the first mob able to do so intelligently (not counting spiders, who were able to see through all blocks at the time).
12w04a The zombies' AI was improved again to cope with catching fire in sunlight. If a zombie is exposed to sunlight and bursts into flames, it will search for a body of water to douse the flames, or at least a shelter to hide from sun.
12w06a Zombies now chase and attack villagers, attack doors (breaking them on Hard and Hardcore difficulties), and sometimes drop iron ingots, helmets, shovels and swords as a rare drop. Sometimes zombies attacked villagers in preference to the player, and always chose the shortest way to the target, even if there was a door in the way.
12w07a The drop rate of rare drops was reduced.
1.4.2 12w32a Zombie armor was added back into the game, and they could wear any type of armor. Zombies could now also hold an iron sword or iron shovel. They had a chance of dropping these items if they had them. Iron helmets, swords and shovels were removed as rare drops.
Zombies use their attack animation like they did in Classic 0.24. This only shows when a zombie is holding a weapon. When a zombie holds a weapon the damage it does is equal to the damage the player would do with the weapon added to the normal damage of the zombie.
Armor worn by zombies works the same as it does for the player, each piece gives a certain amount of armor points, where each 1 (Half Armor.svg) gives 4% damage reduction, but total damage reduction is limited to 80%.
Zombie villagers could now also spawn, and villagers now become infected when killed by a zombie. 5% of zombies spawned are zombie villagers. Infecting a baby villager creates a baby zombie villager which is faster than a normal zombie and does not age. Zombie villagers under the effects of a potion of weakness can be cured by using a golden apple on them.
12w34a Zombies have two new rare drops – carrots and potatoes.
12w34b Zombies can pick up and equip dropped items.[7][8] If killed, the zombie drops the item it is holding.
Zombies can survive sunlight if they are wearing a helmet or a pumpkin.[6]
12w36a The zombie and zombie pigmen models and texture layouts have changed (no visual change, but breaks texture packs).
12w38a Zombies were given new sounds.
?On Halloween, zombies can spawn wearing pumpkins or jack o'lanterns.
1.5 13w03a Zombies are now able to set the player on fire if they are on fire and they attack the player.
Zombies can call other zombies from the nearby area (radius dependent on difficulty) to attack the player, making packs of zombies approach shortly after damaging the zombie.
Zombies cause more damage when their health is lower.
1.6.1 13w17a When damaged, zombies have a low chance to spawn more zombies.
13w21a Zombie damage increasing with decreasing health was removed.
13w23b Zombie AI and mechanics changed – this made them much more horde-like.
Zombies are now able to detect the player up to 40 blocks.
1.6.2 1.6.2-pre Baby zombies spawn among regular ones. They have the same percentage of spawning as zombie villagers.
1.7.4 13w49a Added chicken jockeys – A rare version of the baby zombie.
1.8 14w11a Now run away from creepers that are about to explode.
14w30a Drops head when killed by a charged creeper.
1.8.1 1.8.1-pre1 No longer run away from creepers that are about to explode.
1.9 15w32a The detection range of zombies is halved when the player is wearing a zombie mob head.
15w33c The detection range for players wearing the zombie mob head is adjusted, now 37.5% of the normal range.
15w34a Zombies now have an attack animation similar to the one they had in Classic 0.24–0.30,even without weapons
15w35a Zombie villagers retain their professions and clothes, which have a tattered appearance.
New VillagerProfession tag that determines what profession the zombie villager is, as well as what profession it will be when cured.
15w36a The detection range for players wearing the zombie mob head is again 50% of the normal range.
15w43a A zombie villager priest can be found caged in an igloo basement.
1.10 16w20a Added husk variant, including baby form.
Added husk spawn egg.
"Generic" green-robed zombie villager removed due to the new ZombieType tag not allowing invalid villager professions.
1.10-pre1 Chance of setting the target on fire when burning, and the duration of the effect, now depends on raw regional difficulty.
Husk hunger effect duration now depends on raw regional difficulty.
1.10-pre2 Removed husk spawn egg.
1.10 Added exclusive sounds for a Husk, their sounds would be a more raspy sound of a regular Zombie, before this Husks used to sound like regular zombies.
1.11 16w32a Re-added the husk spawn egg, added a Zombie Villager spawn egg.
Entity ID Zombie is now zombie, zombie_villager and husk for those respective mobs.
Removed the ZombieType tag, added the Profession tag to zombie_villager only, and made ConversionTime apply to zombie_villager only.
Setting the Profession tag to 5 will make green-robed villagers.
Zombie villagers' in-game name is now "Zombie Villager" instead of entity.Zombie.name.
Husks now avoid water.
16w32b Re-added Zombie Generic Villagers, along with its normal counterpart.
16w39a Zombie villagers now have their own sounds.
Pocket Edition Alpha
0.2.0 Added zombies.
0.4.0 Zombies can drop feathers.
0.5.0 Zombies have new animations.
0.8.0 build 2 Zombies spawn more frequently and have rare drops of carrots and potatoes.
0.9.0 build 1 Zombie AI and mechanics changed – this made them much smarter.
0.9.4 Zombies now have 2 (Armor.svg) armor points, preventing 8% of damage.
0.11.0 build 1 Added baby zombies and chicken jockeys.
Zombies now drop rotten flesh.
0.12.1 build 1 Added zombie villagers.
Zombie villagers retain their professions and clothes, which have a tattered appearance.
Zombies can now spawn wearing armor.
Zombies now have the ability to pick up items.
Zombies will now break down doors.
Zombies are now able to detect the player up to 40 blocks.
0.14.0 build 1 Baby zombies will have a 15% chance to want to be a jockey. If they want to be a jockey, upon nearing the player they will check for one of the following to mount prior attacking: adult chickens, adult ocelots, adult wolves, adult zombies, cows, pigs, sheep, or spiders.
0.15.0 build 1 Added husks.
Baby zombies can now ride husks.
Added husk spawn egg.
0.16.0 build 5 Husks now have their own sounds.
Legacy Console Edition
TU1CU11.00Patch 1Added zombies.
TU5Zombies now drop rotten flesh instead of feathers.
TU12The zombies' AI was improved, giving them a much better sense of direction when pursuing the player, allowing them to navigate obstacles, and even small mazes if constructed, to get to the player. They were also given the ability to 'see' through windows. If a zombie is exposed to sunlight and bursts into flames, it will search for a body of water to douse the flames.
Zombies chased and attacked villagers, attacked doors (breaking them on Hard difficulty)Sometimes zombies attacked villagers in preference to the player, and always chose the shortest way to the target, even if there was a door in the way.
Zombies sometimes dropped iron ingots, helmets, shovels and swords as a rare drop.
TU141.04Added zombie villagers.
Added Baby Zombie Villagers. However, they can only be obtained by having a zombie kill a baby villager, as a Zombie spawn egg will not spawn them due to baby zombies not being in game.
TU151.05Changed zombies' rare loot drop to be carrots, potatoes or iron ingots.
TU19CU71.12Zombies can now pick up items and occasionally spawn with armor and/or weapons.
Added baby zombies.
Baby zombie villagers can now be spawned with a zombie spawn egg.
TU31CU191.22Patch 3Baby zombies now drop xp.
Drops skull when killed by a charged creeper.
TU46CU361.38Patch 15Added husks.


Issues relating to “Zombie” are maintained on the issue tracker. Report issues there.





In Other Media


  1. The inradius is based on the followRange stat: base value is 35, ±5% random spawn bonus, then plus 0–50% random zombie-spawn bonus