Minecraft: Java Edition Snapshot 22w42a introduces Minecraft 1.20 features

Early image of Minecraft 1.20.
(Image credit: Xbox Game Studios)

What you need to know

  • Minecraft 1.20 is the next major content update for the ongoing survival game, revealed during Minecraft Live 2022.
  • As part of its renewed committment to transparency, Mojang Studios only announced four features.
  • It was announced that all four of the features were far along in development and almost ready for testing.
  • Less than a week later, all the initial Minecraft 1.20 features are available in Minecraft: Java Edition Snapshot 22w42a.

Players have been waiting with bated breath for news of the next named content update for Minecraft, the never-ending creative-survival title from Mojang Studios and Xbox Game Studios. Less than a week ago, the silence was finally broken and the first handful of features from the upcoming update was revealed. On Wednesday, Mojang Studios released the first Minecraft: Java Edition snapshot testing these nascent features.

Minecraft players will be able to get their hands on four brand-new features from the 1.20 update as part of an experimental toggle within the new snapshot. This quick turnaround is part of Mojang Studios' efforts to improve its communication and transparency with the community, and to only show off or announce features that are far along in development. This shift allows the Minecraft team to rapidly release new content for testing shortly after its reveal.

Minecraft 1.20 was initially revealed as a part of Minecraft Live 2022, although many details are not available at the moment. We know that the future Minecraft update is centered around player expression, creativity, and representation, and that Mojang Studios will continue to announce and co-develop new features with the community as they're ready. The finished Minecraft 1.20 update should release sometime in 2023.

Thanks to its far-reaching community and deeply-rooted mod support, Minecraft: Java Edition is an indelible part of the best games on PC. Now, players of the legacy Minecraft version can be among the first to test new Minecraft 1.20 features in Minecraft: Java Edition Snapshot 22w42a, available now. Even if you don't own this edition, Minecraft: Java Edition is now offered through PC Game Pass and Xbox Game Pass Ultimate.

The full changelog for Minecraft: Java Edition Snapshot 22w42a includes:

Experimental 1.20 features

General

  • Some experimental features now need to be enabled to appear in worlds
  • Such features are enabled by adding a built-in datapack when creating a world
  • Feature toggles are meant to hide unfinished or experimental features, to make sure your existing worlds remain unaffected
  • Worlds that are using experimental features will be marked as “Experimental” in world selection list
  • Experimental features cannot be toggled for existing worlds

Bamboo wood set

  • A new set of Bamboo wood blocks are now available when Update 1.20 experimental features are enabled
  • New wood blocks:
    • Bamboo Planks
    • Bamboo Door
    • Bamboo Trapdoor
    • Bamboo Sign
    • Bamboo Stairs
    • Bamboo Slab
    • Bamboo Fence
    • Bamboo Fence Gate
    • Bamboo Button
    • Bamboo Pressure Plate
  • Bamboo Planks can be crafted with 2x2 Bamboo items
  • Added a new “Mosaic” plank variant that is unique to Bamboo called Bamboo Mosaic
    • It can be crafted with 1x2 Bamboo Slabs in a vertical strip
    • You can craft Stair and Slab variants of Bamboo Mosaic
  • Added a unique Bamboo Raft and Bamboo Chest Raft which can be crafted like normal boats, but with Bamboo Planks
    • They function the same as ordinary boats, but have a unique look to them

Camels

  • Camels are now available when Update 1.20 experimental features are enabled
  • Camels can be equipped with a saddle and ridden by two players
  • Camels spawn naturally in Desert Villages
  • Camels are tall
    • Most hostile mobs will not be able to reach you when you are on a Camel
    • They can walk over fences without a sweat
  • Camels are very graceful, but grumpy mobs
    • They randomly sit down
    • While sitting, it is difficult to convince them to move
  • Camels can either walk slowly or sprint quickly
  • They can also dash forward but will lose stamina for a while when doing so

Chiseled Bookshelves

  • A new, chiseled variation of the Bookshelf is now available when Update 1.20 experimental features are enabled
  • Crafted with 6 planks and 3 wooden slabs
  • Can store Books, Book and Quills, Written Books, and Enchanted Books
    • Holds up to 6 books
    • Keeps the stories and lore of your world safe
  • Comparators can detect the last book placed / removed
    • Perfect for hiding secrets in your spooky library

Hanging Signs

  • Ever wanted to hang up your signs? Fetch a few chains, strip some logs, and now you can! Hanging signs are now available when Update 1.20 experimental features are enabled
  • Hanging Signs are a more expensive version of normal Signs
    • Crafted with 2 chains and 6 stripped logs of your preferred wood type
    • Crafting results in 6 Hanging Signs
  • Can be hung up in the following ways:
    • Underneath a block that can provide support in the center, like a full block or a fence
    • Attached to the solid side of a block
    • Attached to the side or underneath another Hanging Sign
  • Unlike normal Signs, they cannot be placed directly on the ground without support from the side or above
    • However, Hanging Signs that have a horizontal bar will not pop when the supporting block is removed

Sounds

  • Various wood types now have unique sounds when placed, broken, or walked on
    • There are three sets of unique sounds: Overworld wood types, Nether wood types, and Bamboo

Features & bug fixes

Features

  • Some experimental features are now available through built-in experimental datapacks
  • Bundles are now available as an experimental feature
  • Added a new “Panorama Scroll Speed” accessibility option

Changes

  • Reworked the Creative Inventory tabs
  • Changes to chat
  • The Realms News button will now show a confirmation screen before opening the link
  • Stronghold placement code has been changed to be more efficient, causing stronghold positions to shift
    • They are still placed in concentric rings, but their positions in the rings may change by a few degrees

Chat

  • Removed Chat Preview
  • Chat messages deleted by server moderators will no longer be completely hidden, but rather replaced with text stating “This chat message has been deleted by the server.”
  • Deleted chat messages will now be displayed in the chat window for at least 3 total seconds before being hidden
  • The Chat Trust Status indicators have been tweaked:
    • The ‘Modified’ tag will no longer display for server-modified messages where only style has been changed
    • The ‘Modified’ tag icon and indicator is now dark gray
    • The ‘Not Secure’ tag is now light gray and does not have an icon
  • Partially filtered chat messages now show the filtered text as gray hashes with a hover text saying that it was filtered

Creative inventory

  • The ordering of tabs and the contents in the Creative Inventory have been tweaked to make the experience of finding relevant blocks and items easier
  • Blocks and items have been moved into categories that fit them better
  • Blocks are now ordered by their material as much as possible
    • For example, all Oak blocks and variants are now next to each other
  • Some items can now be found in more than one tab
  • Various tabs have been renamed or collapsed into others
  • The search tab now lists items sequentially grouped by the other tabs
    • For example, items found in Building Blocks will always appear before items in Redstone Blocks
  • Petrified Oak Slab has been removed from the Creative Inventory
    • It can still be accessed through commands
  • This is a first iteration to bring a better experience to the Creative Inventory, and we will look closely at the feedback for these changes to iterate as needed

Fixed bugs

  • Mobs build up fall damage when dangling on a lead
  • Rabbits sometimes don’t drop any raw rabbit upon being killed
  • Jumping on farmland pushes the player a bit
  • Can’t hold "Q" to drop items rapidly from container inventories
  • Clicking a settings button when there’s a slider under the mouse in the next screen plays the click sound twice
  • The “Programmer Art” resource pack is internally called “programer_art”
  • Mobs can spawn on scaffolding
  • Jukebox music sound originates from north-west edge of the block
  • Mobs are able to spawn on Chorus Flowers
  • Chest latch doesn’t rotate properly
  • Click sound of sliders in the video settings noticeably louder than anywhere else
  • Composter filling sounds originate from the bottom northwest corner of the block
  • Spawnpoint set on respawn anchor using `/spawnpoint` depletes glowstone charge, and doesn’t stay on respawn anchor if its charge is depleted
  • Nether and warped wart blocks do not come after leaves in the Creative inventory
  • Donkeys, mules and undead horses cannot be saddled by right-clicking
  • The sounds for collecting honey in a bottle and collecting honeycomb with shears is categorised under friendly creatures
  • Villagers breed when not standing up
  • You can set your spawn point inside an end portal, causing the player to become stuck in the End
  • Horse armor and carpets cannot be equipped onto horses or llamas by right-clicking them whilst having these items held in your hand
  • One farmland block in `plains_large_farm_1` has moisture level `0`
  • Torches and soul torches aren’t grouped together in the creative inventory
  • Obsidians aren’t grouped together in Creative
  • Cat can get off lead by teleporting when it gives a gift after sleeping
  • Multiplayer warning and Chat Preview warning are off center
  • Basalt and blackstone are not grouped together with other “polishable” stone types in the Creative inventory
  • Wart blocks and shroomlights are in different Creative tabs
  • Blackstone stairs & slabs are not grouped with the other stone type stairs & slabs
  • Beds and respawn anchors are not grouped in the Creative inventory
  • Inconsistency: Barriers and structure voids produce particles when broken, but light blocks do not
  • Netherite scrap comes after netherite ingot in the creative inventory
  • Mob pathfinding fails under certain circumstances / mobs fall on closed turns
  • Axolotls pathfinding to water can sometimes fall in wide holes
  • Inconsistency: Blocks are not placed correctly in Creative inventory
  • Pointed dripstone is not grouped with dripstone blocks in the creative inventory
  • Moss Block appears in the wrong creative inventory tab
  • Emerald block in creative inventory looks out of place
  • Melons can generate underwater
  • Worldgen data packs don’t work on servers at first launch
  • Pressure plates don’t activate even though visually they should
  • Water rendering incorrectly through frogspawn hitbox / model
  • Frogs can sometimes fall into deep holes when pathfinding to entities
  • The sounds of splashing when creating mud aren’t controlled by the “Blocks” sound slider
  • Rabbits ignore the `MoreCarrotTicks` value, causing them to always try to eat carrots
  • Map color for mud brick slab is no longer consistent with map color for other mud brick blocks
  • Shulkers in boats with chests are lowered
  • Frogspawn is not grouped with turtle eggs in the Creative inventory
  • Allay’s wings are not attached to its body
  • Allays don’t render semi-transparent when invisible where appropriate
  • Allay renders too low in boat, boat with chest, minecart and entities
  • Allays attempt to pathfind to items that are outside of the world border
  • Parity Issue: Allays hesitate for a few seconds before following, throwing items, or doing other actions in Java
  • New advancement “Birthday Song” grants no experience
  • Parity Issue: Allays pick up arrow / potion items with other effects than the ones they’re holding
  • The `minecraft:entity.tadpole.grow_up` sound event doesn’t have a translation key
  • Frog frequently fails to long jump to small blocks
  • `minecraft.used:minecraft.goat_horn` doesn’t increase when using goat horns
  • Allay has a transparent texture but it is not transparent in game
  • Allay’s poses, flying animations, and dancing animations for duping differ from Bedrock’s, causing intense clipping, inconsistencies, choppy movements, and strange item positioning
  • Chat preview can overlap chat contents if the message is long enough
  • The chat preview warning menu is forcibly closed when the player dies or changes dimensions
  • Bedrock Edition’s new 1.19.10 splash text is not available on Java 1.19
  • Allay duplicates Items when its NBT data is updated every tick
  • Allays can dance while panicking
  • Allays with NoAI can dance
  • The screen is sometimes flashed with the “Loading terrain…” screen after proceeding with the chat preview warning when all nearby chunks are loaded
  • Vibration particle faces at a constant pitch of about 60 degrees, not pointing towards the target
  • Breeding a Screaming Goat and a Regular Goat never results in a screaming goat
  • Command suggestions can overlap the chat preview field when the chat preview option is set to “When Sending”
  • Secure Chat warning toast can appear on singleplayer worlds
  • Nether portals cannot replace snow layers
  • “Narrator Disabled” pop-up doesn’t render fully
  • Crash when a villager with a gossip of value 0 shares gossips
  • `net.minecraft.client.Camera#getMaxZoom(double)` issue
  • Sculk Shrieker warning level resets to 0 after player’s death
  • Menu panorama stops spinning after several days
  • Explosions create ghost blocks on servers at high coordinates

Technical changes

General

  • Added Feature Flags — world options to enable or disable some experimental or unfinished features (like blocks, entities and items)
  • Network protocol changes
  • Instances of recipe types that have recipe books now have field `category` to determine placement

Network protocol

  • The network protocol now supports adding player entities to the world without being added to the `tab` player list
  • Servers can now lazily distribute players’ profile public keys along with their first chat packet
  • Message `headers` within the Secure Chat protocol no longer need to be distributed when private messages are sent
  • Contextual message references are now deduplicated for efficiency within the Secure Chat network protocol

Recipes

  • Crafting book categories / tabs can now be controlled by recipe definitions
  • Categories available for `shaped` / `shapeless` and various special crafting recipes:
    • `building`
    • `redstone`
    • `equipment`
    • `misc` (default)
  • Categories available for `smelting`, `blasting`, `smoking`, `campfire_cooking`
    • `food`
    • `blocks`
    • `misc` (default)
  • Some crafting books collapse multiple categories into a single tab
  • The exact mappings might change in the future

Resource packs

  • The Resource Pack version is now 11
  • Removed “fixers” for resource packs with versions 3 and 4 (pre-flattening)
    • The game will no longer try to adapt packs with those versions to the current version

Feature Flags

General

  • Feature flags are options that enable or disable certain groups of game elements (like blocks, entities and items), later called “features”
  • Game elements controlled by flags are hardcoded
  • Feature flags are stored in world

Configuration & datapack changes

  • Feature flags are enabled by datapacks
    • New pack metadata section called `features` is added, containing enabled feature flags in list named `enabled`
  • The game now contains built-in datapacks (similar to the “Programmer Art” resource pack) that enable features and provide associated recipes, advancements, loot tables, etcetera
  • Added new fields to `server.properties` to allow initial selection of packs (works only during world creation)
    • `initial-enabled-packs` — comma-separated list of packs to be enabled (feature packs need to be explicitly enabled)
    • `initial-disabled-packs` — comma-separated list of packs to not auto-enable
  • Datapacks discovered after world creation will be disabled if they require features that are not enabled for loaded world

Effects

  • Blocks
    • Disabled block ids are not recognized by commands that can create new blocks
    • Block items for disabled blocks are disabled
    • Disabled blocks won’t spawn in structures
    • Disabled blocks won’t be loaded as part of entities (for example as falling sand or blocks carried by Endermen)
    • Players can’t interact with disabled blocks
  • Entities
    • Disabled entity ids are not recognized by commands that can summon new entities
    • Disabled entities will not spawn or load
    • Spawn egg items for disabled entities are disabled
  • Items
    • Disabled items are hidden from creative menu
    • Recipes and loot tables are prevented from creating disabled items
    • Disabled item ids are not recognized by commands that can create new items
    • Disabled items can’t be used for interactions or attacking
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Xbox Game Pass Ultimate

Mere days after first being revealed during Minecraft Live 2022, the first Minecraft 1.20 snapshot is now available to players with the initial four features in tow. Minecraft: Java Edition is available through PC Game Pass and Xbox Game Pass Ultimate.

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Zachary Boddy
Staff Writer

Zachary Boddy (They / Them) is a Staff Writer primarily focused on covering the latest news, the best Xbox and PC games, and the most interesting hardware. They have been gaming and writing for most of their life, and have been with Windows Central and its sister sites since 2019. While originally brought on to write about all things Minecraft, Zachary has since expanded to write about practically everything that Windows Central covers. You can find Zachary on Twitter @BoddyZachary.