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Two For the Price of One

We’re covering two Minecraft snapshot updates again this week; the last snapshots of 2018. These updates continue focusing on the village aspect of “Pillage and Village.”

Snapshot 18W49A focuses on changes to Savannah villages and snow biome villages, while 18W50A refines that a little further. We see some of the new blocks getting functionality and more.  Let’s dive right in!

18W49A: A Wintery Update

One of the big changes in this update is the addition of snow biome villages. These villages are primarily made of spruce wood, the type that dominates snowy biomes. You might even see a few igloos around town. Due to the cold, the well seems to have become a frozen fountain.

A berry bush with sweet berries. It looks a lot like a short rose bush. Image courtesy of Gamepedia.

The second biggest addition is a much-anticipated food source (at least for me): berries. When I play modded Minecraft, berries are usually my first main source of food due to my hurry to get my Tinker’s Construct going. And like modded Minecraft, these vanilla-Minecraft berries aren’t very filling. However, unlike the mods, berry bushes are much smaller, only taking up the size of one block.

A berry bush has four stages. During its young stage it will drop 1-2 berries and when it is fully grown it will drop 2-3. Its growth can be affected by bonemeal. You can find berry bushes commonly in Taiga and its hills and mountain variants, but they are rarer in Snowy Taiga and its variants. Probably because of the cold and snow, I would think.

And lastly, 18W49A changes raids. Bad Omen levels now have two waves per level and you have to complete each wave before another one starts.

18W50A: New Blocks Are Working

Several of the new blocks that were introduced, but not functioning, now have a purpose. The barrel, blast furnace, and smoker now work. The new block, the bell, now has sound. Breaking it down:

  • The barrel is a storage space which can fit in tight spaces.
  • The blast furnace smelts ores and melts metals faster than the standard furnace. It’s more expensive at 3 smooth stone, 1 furnace, and 5 iron ingots.
  • A smoker melts foods faster than your standard furnace. It also takes a furnace to craft, as well as 4 logs.
Desert villages got a redesign, as well as villager skins. Image courtesy of

Villagers received a major update. Both villagers and villager zombies have new skins. Aww, look, they have little hats, isn’t that adorable! If that wasn’t enough, a new profession has been added as well: the mason.

Lastly, raids got another tweak in 18W50A. Captains will now spawn at outposts. Patrol captains now give 1-3 bad omen levels when killed, though outpost captains will always give only 1. When you trigger a bad omen, different wave levels will spawn different enemies. Beasts will spawn starting at wave 2, witches at wave 4, and evokers at wave 10. Good luck. Sounds like you’ll need it.

And One More Thing

The official Minecraft textures received another update. The previous update was given some feedback that it was too blurry, according to the latest announcement. I would have to agree. Wooden planks didn’t look like wood anymore with defined grain and knots. From what I’ve seen of this new update, I’m liking the textures much more than the previous one.

How about you guys over there at Microsoft make official 32x and 64x versions of Minecraft textures? I like using Better Than Default 64x texture pack for mine because it looks like vanilla Minecraft but with a higher resolution. However, downloading texture packs is super sketchy and I’m always afraid will give me a virus. Make it happen, Microsoft!

The original texture pack vs the 3.1 update. Image courtesy of
For more details on the bug fixes and command updates, read the snapshot announcements on 18W49A and 18W50A on the official Minecraft website.