Introducing, the camp fire. Image courtesy of Microsoft.

A Safe Way to Build Your Fireplace – Finally

The safe radius around a fire block, and also a good example of the checker pattern I use in my builds. Image courtesy of Gamepedia.

One of the first things I do when I build a Minecraft house is to build a fireplace and a chimney. Unfortunately, I also like to make my house out of wood. Checker patterned wood, to be exact, with each room a different combination of colors of wood.

Needless to say, fire and wood don’t mix very well in Minecraft. A fire block can catch the wood, or other flammable objects, on fire up to four blocks away from the fire block. When I typically build my ceilings three blocks high, it’s a problem.

That problem is now one in the past, thanks to the campfire block.


The first Minecraft snapshot of the year, 19W02A, adds the new campfire block. Not only is the campfire a safe fire (it will not catch anything else on fire), it’s pretty as well. Your fireplace can now be built safely and also has some actual firewood to make it look even more rustic.

If you’re into creating smoke that comes out of the chimney, you’re also in luck. Putting a hay bale underneath of the campfire makes a long smoke signal that can be seen from far away.

The campfire can also cook food. However, it will cook it slowly. Last but not least, the campfire can be lit and unlit. Pretty darn nifty if you ask me.

I can confirm that standing on a campfire will deal damage to you a half a heart at a time, but it won’t set you on fire. I was going to provide a picture of a working fireplace, but I couldn’t seem to get the smoke signal effect no matter how I placed the hay bale. Bug?

Lecterns and Cartography

Snapshot 19W02A also added lecterns. A lectern is a type of podium that holds books. In order to use it in Minecraft, right-click to add a book to it. Right-click again to open the book. The exposed page’s contents will be able to be viewed by all players.

To read the book on the lectern, right-click on it. Screen of Minecraft.

For you redstone geniuses out there, a lectern will also send out a redstone pulse when the page is changed. Sounds like a good booby trap to me.

The cartography table also sees an upgrade in this update. The UI was changed to better represent what the recipes are doing. This allows for ease in copying, extending, and locking your maps. Locking a map puts a glass pane over it so it can no longer be modified.

In conclusion, I like to pick out a funny bug fix for each snapshot. Several villagers suddenly had a thigh gap and it’s been resolved. You’re welcome.

For more information on the snapshot and the various bug fixes and command changes, read the announcement on the Minecraft website.