The Minecraft community is calling for an end to the annual Mob Vote — And they may be right

Image of the Minecraft Live 2023 Mob Vote, but with the Mob Vote logo crossed out.
(Image credit: Xbox Game Studios | Windows Central)

Minecraft is one of the largest and most successful video game franchises of all time, and its community numbers in the hundreds of millions. Each year, Mojang Studios' Minecraft-centric event (now known as Minecraft Live) attracts a substantial amount of attention, as it's the place to be to discover all the upcoming announcements, updates, and reveals for the Minecraft universe and some of the best Xbox games.

It's also when the annual Minecraft Mob Vote occurs, during which the Minecraft community votes on one of three brand-new mobs to be added to Minecraft in a future update. The Mob Vote regularly sees considerable participation (last year's Mob Vote saw 3.5 million unique voters), but controversy surrounding the yearly event has been steadily growing. This year, calls from the Minecraft community to put a permanent end to the Mob Vote seem to be outweighing the Mob Vote itself, and there's a good reason for it.

The Minecraft community doesn't want to have to choose between great mobs.

Summarizing the Minecraft Live Mob Vote

In past years, Mojang Studios hosted community-wide votes to help guide future updates, such as choosing which biome the studio should focus on updating. With the advent of Minecraft Live (replacing the in-person Minecon), Mojang Studios shifted to an annual Mob Vote. Every year, the company would announce three exciting new mobs, and then ask the community to vote on which one should actually be added to Minecraft. Previously, the vote was held through Twitter (X), but is now held through Minecraft: Bedrock Edition, the Minecraft Launcher, and the official Minecraft website.

Only one mob can actually win the vote, though, with the remaining two being carted away to the infamous Minecraft vaults, never to be seen again in vanilla Minecraft. In the first iteration of the Mob Vote, the Glow Squid bested the Moobloom and Iceologer. The next year, the Allay vanquished the Glare and Copper Golem. Last year, the Sniffer annihilated the Glare and Tuff Golem. Now, the Minecraft community is being asked to choose between the Crab, the Armadillo, and the Penguin.

For more information, be sure to read our full guide on the Minecraft Live Mob Vote.

The yearly controversy surrounding the Mob Vote

The Allay may have one its Mob Vote, but many players are still looking for the Glare and Copper Golem. (Image credit: Xbox Game Studios | Twitter)

The annual Minecraft Mob Vote never fails to spark a mass, community-wide debate regarding the proposed options. After all, there are three mobs, but each player only gets one vote. It's inevitable that many players will be disappointed when their mob of choice doesn't win, especially when it basically means that mob will never be seen in vanilla Minecraft (with the lone exception of the frog).

However, frustrations surrounding the Mob Vote have been steadily growing year-over-year, to the point where I regularly see posts calling for an end to the Minecraft Mob Vote getting more engagement than Minecraft's official posts. Many players are tired of needing to choose, instead demanding that Mojang Studios add all three mobs to Minecraft.

The below Twitter X post from user @mufflekip brings together a variety of propaganda-style art made by the Minecraft community decrying the Mob Vote, and has over twice the likes and three times the reposts of Minecraft's most recent Mob Vote post. The comments on that aforementioned post and YouTube video are filled with people also adding their voice to the cause. There's even "#StopTheMobVote" on X, with over 16,000 posts at the time of writing.

There is even a petition that is rapidly gaining traction, with over 129,000 new signatures on the day I'm writing this. The Minecraft community is serious about this, even when you consider that negativity is often far more vocal than positivity, whether or not it's the minority. It's not often that I see Minecraft players unite so completely over a topic, but I'm seeing it here.

I'm also inclined to agree that the Mob Vote feels unfair, but it's not as simple as demanding Mojang Studios add all three mobs each year.

We shouldn't have to choose, but it also isn't simple

It's a lot of work to add anything to Minecraft, but is the community frustration worth the marketing power of the Mob Vote? (Image credit: Mojang Studios)

Before I go any further, I just want to make one thing clear: Do not use your grievances regarding the Minecraft Live Mob Vote to make hateful, crude, or disrespectful comments to Mojang Studios employees, Minecraft developers, or fellow members of the Minecraft community. Frustrations when something isn't working are entirely understandable, but simply making your voice heard and requesting a change is all that's necessary. These are human beings, and they are just as passionate about Minecraft as you are. Most of them also have nothing to do with the Mob Vote.

Okay, back to the task at hand — I agree that the Mob Vote feels unfair and intentionally limiting. I don't enjoy getting excited about new mobs only for most to never make it to Minecraft, nor do I enjoy having to choose between multiple mobs I like. I loved the Moobloom, Iceologer, Copper Golem, Rascal, and Tuff Golem, but I may never see any of them in Minecraft. It's undeniable that the Mob Vote is a very effective marketing tool for attracting engagement from the Minecraft community around Minecraft Live, but is that really worth the frustration and disappointment it also brings every year?

That being said, it's not as simple as demanding Mojang Studios announce three new mobs a year to add to Minecraft. Adding any feature, mob, block, or mechanic to vanilla Minecraft requires a huge amount of planning, development, and testing to ensure that the added content works seamlessly with the rest of Minecraft, doesn't upset the balance of the game, is accessible for players of all ages, and doesn't introduce new bugs or issues. These are things that many modders may not take into consideration when adding their own new mobs to Minecraft, but Mojang simply cannot take that approach with vanilla Minecraft.

The Sniffer was my first choice, but I genuinely loved all three of these mobs, and it's sad that two had to lose. (Image credit: Xbox Game Studios | Twitter)

I wrote well over a year ago that Minecraft's slow update cycle doesn't need to change, and I stand by that today. Still, I wholly understand the outrage surrounding the Mob Vote, and I empathize with it, too. I don't think the Mob Vote is healthy for the Minecraft community, as it only sets us up for disappointment. Mojang Studios teases the possibility of new, official Minecraft mobs, only to take two out of three away from us. Something needs to change, but the answer also isn't "make Mojang add all three mobs every year," because it's not sustainable given the way Minecraft has to be updated with so many factors (and players) in mind.

Hopefully, Mojang Studios is listening to community feedback and considering how to approach future Minecraft Live events. Perhaps making the Mob Vote more vague would be a good way to go, instead letting players vote on a theme or idea that the Minecraft team can then take and design new Minecraft content around. Or, keep the Mob Vote as is, but make it so that players are instead deciding the order in which those mobs will be added to Minecraft, providing more time for ample development and testing.

Whatever the solution, transparency is key. Mojang Studios has been doing better on this front every year, ensuring that it only announces features and updates when they're already nearing public testing, but there's always more work to be done. The Minecraft community has made it clear that the current Minecraft Live Mob Vote needs to be changed, it just remains to be seen if and how that will happen.

Zachary Boddy
Staff Writer

Zachary Boddy (They / Them) is a Staff Writer for Windows Central, primarily focused on covering the latest news in tech and gaming, the best Xbox and PC games, and the most interesting Windows and Xbox hardware. They have been gaming and writing for most of their life starting with the original Xbox, and started out as a freelancer for Windows Central and its sister sites in 2019. Now a full-fledged Staff Writer, Zachary has expanded from only writing about all things Minecraft to covering practically everything on which Windows Central is an expert, especially when it comes to Microsoft. You can find Zachary on Twitter @BoddyZachary.

  • fdruid
    Call me naive, but let's be honest, is it such a development burden for Mojang Studios to just create THREE new mobs in a whole year? Three, not 15. And mobs.