Minecraft: Java Edition Snapshot 21w20a includes more changes from 'Caves and Cliffs Update' and many bug fixes

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

What you need to know

  • Mojang Studios is hard at work developing the next major update for Minecraft, the 'Caves and Cliffs Update.'
  • Part of making this happening is testing features and changes with the community through betas and snapshots.
  • The latest Minecraft: Java Edition snapshot, 21w20a, includes a handful of additional changes and lots of bug fixes.
  • Players can jump into the new snapshot right now on PC to provide feedback on how the update is coming along.

The long march to the Caves and Cliffs Update for Minecraft continues inexorably forward with the arrival of Minecraft: Java Edition Snapshot 21w20a. The latest snapshot, which is now available for Minecraft players on PC, includes even more changes and a ton of bug fixes for the next major release of Minecraft, and continues to divide features for the two separate releases for the Caves and Cliffs Update. This follow's last week's test, Snapshot 21w19a, and isn't going to be the most exciting for players.

Highlights of today's snapshot include further attempts to make crystal geodes feel more scarce and minor changes to things like rooted dirt, axolotl, and llamas. There are also a hefty number of bug fixes to make the whole ordeal feel smoother and a new datapack for those who want to be on the forefront of Caves and Cliffs Update development.

Mojang Studios' commitment to involving the community when updating Minecraft is part of the reason Minecraft is absolutely one of the best PC games around. Share your love for Minecraft and all the work that has gone into it with something from our list of best Minecraft merch, toys, and gifts.

The full changelog for Minecraft: Java Edition Snapshot 21w20a includes:


  • Actually made Geodes rarer this time
  • GUI narration now includes position and usage of hovered or focused element
  • Tilling Rooted Dirt with a Hoe will now convert it into Dirt, and pop out a Hanging Roots item
  • Axolotls will now only play dead when in water
  • Llamas no longer spit at players in peaceful mode

Caves and Cliffs Update preview

Technical changes

  • Added a new NBT tag for entities - HasVisualFire – which will cause any entity with this flag to visually appear on fire, even if they are not actually on fire

Bug fixes

  • Grass / Flowers / Snow are placed incorrectly in newly created chunks
  • Barrier Blocks are not shown when "Show Invisible Blocks" is selected in Save Structure Blocks
  • Crash when loading world: java.util.ConcurrentModificationException when using Java 11 or above
  • Piglins, piglin brutes, hoglins, zoglins and axolotls can attack their own teammates
  • Catching a fish in a bucket on creative mode doesn't give player new bucket
  • Name color for Minecart with Command Block is incorrect
  • Name color for Structure Void is incorrect
  • Crash when leaving out processors in a template pool: java.lang.IllegalArgumentException: bound must be positive
  • Amethyst Geodes cause floating water / lava to generate when intersecting water / lava caves / pools
  • Amethyst geodes can overwrite bedrock
  • Lava Cauldron emits redstone signal strength 1 instead of 3
  • Dirt paths are no longer compatible with the programmer art resource pack
  • Rideable mobs are not affected by powder snow's freezing effect while being ridden
  • Freezing hearts aren't displayed properly in Programmer Art resource pack
  • Amethyst geodes can generate in a stronghold and can potentially destroy the end portal frames
  • minecraft:location_check predicate floating point imprecision
  • Parrots sitting on shoulders do not freeze in powder snow
  • Amethyst blocks are transparent / don't conduct Redstone
  • Potion particles are showing when looking through spyglass
  • Pointed dripstones cause extreme durability damage to helmets
  • Mobs and particles sometimes don't fully render behind stained or tinted glass
  • Trying to modify the world height of a world after it's already been generated gives a null pointer exception
  • Axolotls get stuck and spin constantly on top of lily pads
  • Axolotls have a swimming animation (move their body up- and downwards) when on land
  • Axolotls do not avoid lava when pathfinding
  • Axolotls sometimes twitch rapidly when adjusting their rotation
  • Axolotl movement glitch on stairs
  • Breeding axolotl with a bucket of tropical gives back a bucket instead of a water bucket
  • Collecting an axolotl with a water bucket in creative mode replaces the original bucket
  • Axolotls sometimes use walking animation when in shallow water
  • Axolotls frequently get stuck inside of waterlogged blocks
  • Axolotls play dead even when they take damage without being attacked by an entity
  • Axolotls attempt to pathfind towards unreachable water, then start spinning, eventually drying out and dying
  • Pointed Dripstone can be broken with tridents in spawn protection
  • Only one glow lichen drops when using shears on multiple in a single block space
  • Shulkers can rotate their heads up and down
  • Fire extinguishing sound doesn't play when mobs are extinguished with rain/water
  • Mob can't properly or difficult walk on big dripleaf, when the big dripleaf is 4 blocks or more from the ground
  • Top half of a small dripleaf can turn into a ghost block when placing it in water while the water is being removed
  • Amethyst Geodes can overlap with dungeons
  • netherrack_replace_blobs with water as target crashes the game
  • Comma splices in two source strings (EN_US)
  • Foxes spawned inside of powder snow sleeps
  • The big dripleaf texture is not vertically centered
  • Campfires and TNT can be lit by players using arrows shot from flame bows in spawn protection
  • F3 + L isn't sorted alphabetically in the debug screen
  • The Mojang loading screen upon start up flashes black
  • Sweet berries and glow berries sound events are named extremely differently
  • Parity Issue: Rooted dirt won't turn into the dirt and drop roots item after tilling with hoe in Java
  • Name color for knowledge book is incorrect
  • Fossils can generate through bedrock
  • Name color for light is incorrect
  • Strays do not spawn in powder snow
  • Light blocks are not shown within structure block bounds with Show Invisible Blocks on
  • Powder Snow can be broken by players on fire in spawn protection
  • Collecting an axolotl in a bucket and then placing it resets its kill cooldown
  • Light item displays the wrong level number
  • Splash water bottles doesn't extinguish candle cakes
  • Axolotl can be bred with just tropical fish items, not just bucket ones
  • Chorus flowers can be broken with projectiles in spawn protection
  • You can decrease the level of a water or powder snow cauldron, through the use of an entity on fire in spawn protection
  • minecraft.used:minecraft.potion doesn't increase when filling a partially filled cauldron with a water bottle
  • Powder snow can create ghost blocks in creative mode
  • Powder snow doesn't melt into water in cauldrons
  • Superflat presets no longer generate with decorations
  • Upgrading from 1.12.2 and below will cause items to lose enchantments
  • Dying in a nether portal softlocks the player on the "You Died!" menu
  • cave_vines_plant isn't in #bee_growables
  • Geodes have not been made "significantly rarer"
  • Cannot resolve SRV records: unknown host
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.