The Sniffer from Minecraft 1.20 is coming in the next preview snapshot

Screenshot of the Sniffer in Minecraft 1.20.
(Image credit: Xbox Game Studios)

What you need to know

  • Minecraft 1.20 is the next major update for the ongoing survival crafting game, arriving later this year.
  • On Monday, Mojang Studios announced that one feature included in the update is about to become playable.
  • The Sniffer, winner of the Minecraft Live Mob Vote 2022, is heading to Minecraft in the next snapshot and preview builds.
  • From Feb. 15, 2023, players will be able to find Sniffer eggs via archeology, hatch Snifflets, and use full-grown Sniffers to sniff out ancient seeds.

Minecraft players are already very aware of the Sniffer, a new friendly mob heading to Minecraft in this year's major content update. While the Sniffer has made appearances on Minecraft channels since its announcement and subsequent Minecraft Live Mob Vote win, however, players haven't actually been able to play with the Sniffer. That's about to change.

On Monday, Mojang Studios announced that the Sniffer is finally arriving in Minecraft as part of the next Minecraft: Java Edition snapshot and Minecraft Preview build. That's right, the Sniffer is landing in the hands of players at the same time as the archeology feature set recently announced for Minecraft 1.20. The two features go hand-in-hand, giving players plenty to test ahead of Minecraft 1.20's actual release later this year.

Screenshot of the Sniffer in Minecraft 1.20.

There's no other way to say it — the Sniffer is a CHONK. (Image credit: Xbox Game Studios)

The initial feature set for Minecraft 1.20 was admittedly light, as Mojang Studios wants to only announce features when they're ready to be shared with players. That was the case with archeology, which is bringing new blocks and mechanics to the game in the upcoming feature update. It's also how players will be able to find Sniffer eggs, which can be buried near desert temples and revealed via the archeology brush.

Once players have Sniffer eggs, they can hatch them into Snifflets, adorable babies that can grow into chunky, nosey Sniffers with enough nourishment. Sniffers can then use their incredible sense of smell to sniff out ancient seeds, which players can grow into unique decorative plants. The Sniffer handily won the Minecraft Live Mob Vote 2022, and it's easy to see why. Bring the Sniffers back from extinction, and decorate your home at the same time!

The Sniffer and archeology features are releasing to players on Feb. 15, 2023, through a Minecraft: Java Edition Snapshot and Minecraft Preview build. The features aren't officially releasing for the best Xbox game until Minecraft 1.20 arrives later in 2023. In case you missed it, however, Minecraft: Bedrock Edition 1.19.60 just released on all platforms with over 70 bug fixes in tow.

Windows Central's take

I happily voted for the Sniffer in the Minecraft Live Mob Vote 2022, and I'm ecstatic that we'll finally be able to play with it in the next round of preview Minecraft builds. I love how large and adorable the Sniffer is, and I'm interested to see what the ancient plants look like when they're fully grown. It's also nice that the Sniffer and archeology features go together, bringing a sense of much-needed synergy to the Minecraft 1.20 update.

Still, as I mentioned when archeology was announced, I do feel that Minecraft's next major content update may still be evolving at a slower-than-wanted pace. The arrival of the Sniffer certainly helps, but Minecraft 1.20 will likely arrive a full year after The Wild Update dropped. I'm hoping we see even more new features added to the update before it's finished later this year.

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.