Minecraft: Java Edition 21w05a snapshot adds lush caves from 'Caves and Cliffs Update'

Minecraft Caves and Cliffs Update Image
Minecraft Caves and Cliffs Update Image (Image credit: Mojang Studios)

What you need to know

  • Minecraft: Java Edition tests future updates through snapshots, or temporary "slices" of larger updates.
  • The latest snapshot, 21w05a, is releasing today with a number of new changes, bug fixes, and more.
  • The largest change is the addition of blocks and plant life from lush caves, as part of the future 'Caves and Cliffs Update.'
  • There are also changes to additions made in previous snapshots, including to the sculk sensor.

The latest Minecraft: Java Edition snapshot is here, and snapshot 21w05a will certainly make a lot of Minecrafters very happy. While natural cave generation and new in-world features still aren't here, snapshot players will be able to try out a number of new blocks and plant life that will become a part of lush caves in Minecraft's Caves and Cliffs Update. There's a lot for players to look at in Creative mode, on top of a number of tweaks and changes that affect features added in earlier snapshots.

The Caves and Cliffs Update for Minecraft is planned to release sometime in Summer 2021, and will be one of the largest Minecraft updates to date. Expect new mobs, blocks, items, terrain generation, and even ore to all make their way into the Caves and Cliffs Update.

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The full changelog for Minecraft: Java Edition snapshot 21w05a includes:

New features

  • Azalea bushes as well as flowering azaela bushes!
  • Added cave vines and glow berries!
  • Added dripleaves!
  • Added decorative blocks for the upcoming lush caves: hanging roots and rooted dirt!
  • Added moss!
  • Added spore blossom!

Caves vines and glow berries

  • Cave vines grow down from the ceiling, like weeping vines
  • When they grow they have a chance of producing glow berries
  • Glow berries are a natural light source as well as a food source
  • Foxes eat glow berries
  • Use glow berries to plant new cave vines
  • Bonemealing a cave vine will create glow berries


  • Small dripleaf needs moisture, so it grows on clay or underwater
  • Small dripleaf grow into big dripleaf when bonemealed
  • Big dripleaf grows taller when bonemealed
  • If you stand on a big dripleaf, it will tilt after a while and you will fall off
  • You can crouch or jump to prevent a big dripleaf from tilting
  • A tilted big drip leaf will tilt up again after a while
  • The big dripleaf will break when hit by a projectile
  • The wandering trader will sometimes sell small dripleaf plants


  • Two new decorative blocks: moss block and moss carpet
  • Moss carpet can be crafted from moss blocks

Spore blossom

  • A beautiful large flower placed on ceilings
  • Particles drip from it


  • The stonecutter can be used to craft the different copper block variants
  • The stages of copper oxidization are now called "Copper Block," "Exposed Copper Block," "Weathered Copper Block," and "Oxidized Copper Block," in sequence of least to most oxidized
  • Drowned now have a chance of dropping a copper ingot, they no longer drop gold ingots
  • Added new sculk sensor events
  • Changes to powder snow

Sculk sensor

  • Added the following game events that the Sculk Sensor reacts to, along with corresponding frequency value:
    • Minecart Moving, Ring Bell, Block Change: 6
    • Drinking Finish, Prime Fuse: 7
    • Mob Interact: 8
    • Equip, Shear, Ravager Roar: 9
    • Entity Place: 12
    • Entity Killed: 13
    • Shulker Close: 14
    • Shulker Open: 15
  • Block Change is for when player or dispenser action has changed a block. Example: cake slice being eaten
  • Mob Interact is for specific mob interaction events that cause vibrations
  • Prime Fuse is for both TNT and Creepers

Powder snow

  • Flaming arrows now get extinguished when they collide with powder snow
  • Skeletons now convert to strays when frozen
  • Powder snow is now pushable by pistons and sticky pistons
  • Foxes can now walk on top of powder snow without falling in

Technical changes

  • Improved performance when using many overrides on an item model
  • Copper oxidization is now a random tick effect and thus affected by the randomTickSpeed game rule

Bug fixes

  • Mobs suffocate / go through blocks when growing up near a solid block
  • Debug world spawns player at y=2 instead at y=70 where all the blocks are
  • Baby turtles take damage when pushed against ceiling
  • Sound spam while in water and lava at the same time
  • Pufferfish triggers tripwire without colliding with it upon reloading the game
  • Starting server outputs "unable to resolve BlockEntity for ItemStack" errors
  • Baby zombies / piglins take damage when pushed against ceiling by bubble columns
  • Baby husks, piglins, zombies, zombie villagers, and zombified piglins take damage when jumping into a space with a solid block above it
  • Standing in fire and water spams the extinguish sound
  • Player is dismounted when standing on farmland while riding a horse/boat while the farmland turns to dirt, causing a desync
  • Pufferfish phases through blocks after reloading world
  • chatDelay in "options.txt" has a space between the colon and the value
  • Pufferfish hitbox incorrect when reloading world
  • Large amounts of copper blocks lag the server and causes the worldsave to take forever
  • Cauldrons don't fill with powder snow in some biomes
  • "Fire extinguishes" Sound repeatedly plays when a mob that burns in daylight is in powder snow
  • Occasional desync when trying to enter / exit a boat while the server is lagging
  • Baby cows can suffocate on stairs
  • Powder Snow causes Z-Fighting with Falling Blocks
  • Sculk sensors do not react to minecarts being driven
  • Bell ringing event is not considered a vibration
  • Drinking potions or milk doesn't cause vibrations even though eating does
  • Inconsistency: Filling cauldrons with liquids or powder snow is not detected by sculk sensors
  • Sculk sensor can't detect setting a fire with fire charge
  • Extinguishing a campfire is not detected by sculk sensor
  • Blocks being placed or picked up by an enderman are not detected by sculk sensors
  • Sculk sensors don't properly detect eating from other mobs
  • Sculk sensors do not detect buckets of fish being emptied
  • Sculk sensors don't detect shulkers opening and closing
  • Flame arrows repeatedly trigger sculk sensors
  • Sculk sensors can sense players sneaking in water when they move, even when they're not swimming
  • Sculk sensors don't detect certain flying mobs
  • The fire extinguish sound plays every tick when the player is on fire and freezing
  • Villages will always generate at least on y=0
  • Directly breaking fire does not alert sculk sensors, but removing its supporting block correctly does
  • Breaking paintings / item frames / glow item frames does not alert sculk sensors, even though placing them does
  • Sculk sensor doesn't detect squids swimming
  • Sculk sensors do not detect when ghasts shoot
  • Sculk sensors don't react to ravager roars
  • Ocelots and cats can still emit vibrations while sneaking
  • Shooting bow with flame enchantment while sneaking triggers sculk sensor
  • Sculk sensor detects wrong sound for fishing rod
  • Sculk sensors do not detect the placement of boats and minecarts
  • Sculk sensors do not detect candles being placed into cakes
  • Sculk sensors do not detect when creepers are set off with flint and steel
  • Sculk sensors do not detect lighting TNT with flint and steel
  • Sculk sensors do not detect placing things in flower pots
  • Sculk sensors do not detect books being placed onto lecterns
  • Sculk sensors do not detect collecting water with bottles
  • Sculk sensors do not detect collecting honey bottles
  • Sculk sensors do not detect the breaking of bee nests and beehives in Creative mode
  • Sculk sensors do not detect when ender dragons shoot fireballs
  • Sculk sensors do not detect removing things from flower pots
  • Sculk sensors do not detect when candle cakes are eaten
  • Going into a dimension that has height higher than the maximum height crashes the game
  • Game crashes upon instantly click-replacing the block underneath a bamboo sapling with another bamboo
  • Baby llamas suffocate when below a solid block while standing on top of a carpet
  • Placing glow lichen in lava creates waterlogged glow lichen
  • Shulkers get rotated when upgrading to 21w03a
  • Shulker is sometimes mis-rotated when player teleports through a nether portal and reloading an active chunk with Shulker
  • Crammed enitities pushed through blocks when growing to adults
  • Commands setblock and fill don't work at or above height 1024 in some cases
  • Client can dismount vehicles independently from the server, causing a de-sync
  • Boats dismount you in the direction the boat is facing instead of the direction of the player
  • Importing custom world file height is limited to 2047 instead of 2048
  • Game crashes when generating a world with increased height limit
  • Shulkers are spawned slightly mis-rotated after a shulker was hit by another shulker's shulker bullet
  • Standing near a shulker slightly lifts you when they open
  • Shulkers are often incorrectly rotated upon generation
  • Copper blocks are named differently from bedrock edition



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.