The 1.9 update

Up until now, combat in Minecraft has not been one of the most streamlined aspects of the game. It has never taken any real skill or strategy to be good at combat, just a whole lot of spam clicking with your favorite weapon. Of course, this applies not only to PVE/Dungeon combat, but to PVP as well. The purpose of the new 1.9 combat update is to add variety and strategy to Minecraft’s combat system, making the game more challenging specifically at later stages, and adding some new sounds, items, particles, and abilities to make not only the combat, but the whole game more interesting and diverse.


So yes, with this update, Mojang wants for the first time since a long time to make an overhaul on a “major” aspect of their game, there’s some angry players but they’re still going because the amount of supporters is far greater than the number of angry players. And while it is true that it may take some getting used to the new combat system, players are slowly finding out that some of the benefits included in this update far outweigh the consequences.

Let’s take a look at some of the changes:



  • Dual wielding
    • Dual wielding is a huge change in modern combat, It adds a new inventory slot called the “offhand” which enables players to customize their combat builds to suit their playstyle. The most common will likely to be a weapon and a shield, but Mages could also substitute a high spell power wand for a shield, to give their spells a boost. Or, if you don’t like fighting, try caving with a torch in your offhand. This makes placing them far more convenient!
  • Weapons
    • The Sweep Attack is a new defense ability for the Sword weapon which activates when the player is moving at walking speed or slower which will knock back and damage mobs and players near the initial target. The attack speed meter must be filled for it to work.
    • Crippling strike is a new ability for Axes. When an Axe strikes a shield, it has a 25% chance to disable that shield for 5 seconds. This chance is increased to 100% if the attacker is sprinting when they strike. The attack speed meter must be filled for this to activate.
    • Attack speed
      • Weapons in Minecraft 1.9 by default have a attack speed and introduces the “attack speed meter”. The more the meter is charged, the more damage you deal to the target. Keep in mind that Swords and Axes will not activate their special abilities if this meter is not full.
      • Swords have now lost their ability to block, in lieu of the addition of Shields. The Counter socket will now activate only while blocking with a shield.
    • Shields
      • The shield is a replacement for the Sword’s blocking feature and is a Defensive tool. The shield blocks 33% of incoming melee attacks while used. While being used, It cause the player to slow to the sneaking pace. It also completely blocks any and all arrow damage. The shield blocks any attack coming from the front side of the player.
    • Other tools
      • The shovel now has an attack speed of 1 second. The pickaxe now has a attack speed of 1.2s. The Hoe now deals up to 4 base damage and has an incredibly high attack speed. In addition, Hoes now take damage when striking enemies.
  • Combat changes & additions :
    • Enchanting
      • The sharpness enchantment has been nerfed
      • The protection enchantment has been nerfed
      • Enchantments with a maximum level of 1 will no longer display their level (e.g “Infinity 1” will display “Infinity”)
      • The thorns enchantments now picks the thorn equipped armor randomly instead of always chosing the one at the bottom
      • New enchant: Mending.
        • Mending will automatically repair the tool/weapon it is on when you pick up experience. Currently it is only available on Shields and Fishing Rods on our server.
      • New Enchant: Frost Walker.
        • Turns water into ice which slowly melts away as you walk. This enchantment is currently not available to get on our server.
    • HUD (Head up-display)
      • Status effect icons now also display at the right corner along with the Inventory
    • Natural regeneration (Health)
      • The health bar will regenerate faster when the saturation is not empty and the player is not hungry. When you fill your hunger bar, if you are missing health, your saturation will be consumed to rapidly regenerate your health instead. Keep in mind that after your regen ends, your hunger bar will drop quite quickly again.


Major changes & additions

  • Mobs
    • Changes
      • All mobs now have 5% chance to spawn left-handed
      • All mobs now have both main hand and offhand slots.
      • Entities will now release brown heart particles when hurt, depending on the amount of damage dealt, the particle may be bigger or more particles might appear.
      • Mobs will no longer reset their current pathfinding when hit.
      • Mobs will now avoid Cacti & Fire.
      • Entities packed in a 1×1 hole will no longer push other entities to corners
      • The Ender Dragon can no longer be damaged by Snowballs, eggs or fishing rods
      • The hitbox of creepers has been reduced from 1.8 to 1.7 blocks tall
      • Skeletons were made smarter, once again. They now actively attempt to dodge arrows, as well as  They’re also taller now.
    • New Mob
      • Shulker: Hostile mob, when a player is nearby, it opens its shell and fires a homing projectile. If a player is hit by the projectile, they receive a Levitation Status Effect, causing them to float upwards.
    • Status Effects
      • Luck & Bad Luck: Used to increase or decrease the luck attribute which serves for the new Looting system
      • Levitation: Make an entity float involuntarily into the air: Level 128 to 254 causes the player to fall downward, at level 255 the player will not go upward nor downward, but will stay on the current layer, jumping/falling is also forbidden.
      • Glowing: Caused by spectral arrows, entities inflicted the glowing effect will be visible through walls.
    • Skeleton Horses
      • Skeleton horses now spawn naturally in the wild when a wild horse is struck by lightning. When they spawn, they spawn as something called a “skeleton trap”, when a player goes near the horse, lightning will strike and 3 more skeleton horses will appear, each bearing a skeleton on it’s back. These skeletons will adeptly maneuver their horses in the same kind of kiting pattern the new skeleton AI normally uses. Upon killing all 4 skeletons, the 4 skeleton horses that spawned are now tamed and ready to be ridden


  • Connecting to servers has been optimized to reduce memory usage
  • Artificial intelligence, mostly pathfinding has been reworked and optimized to enhance game performance.
  • Block ticking has been optimized.
  • Chunk generation, loading & sending has been improved.
  • Particles are no longer entities.
  • Redstone wire and Piston contraptions now visibly update much faster.
  • Overall performance has been improved to work better on older machines.
  • While crouching, the player is now 1.65 blocks tall instead of 1.8 blocks.
  • When flying using Elytra, the player hitbox shrinks to 0.6 blocks tall.
  • Added multiple/stackable boss health bars.
  • New sound files for chests, trapdoors, doors, witches, and more!



Minecraft 1.9 adds MANY technical changes, in addition to the changes to the Combat system. Though it will take some getting used to, we are excited about our move to 1.9, and we hope that you will stick with us and learn with us through this change. Thank you all for being such wonderful people, and making Vox Populi the amazing community that it is today.