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Minecraft Snapshot Download Released! How To Farm Minecraft Sheep For Wool

Updated on December 8, 2011

Minecraft snapshots are small pre-releases that occur ahead of official version changes. They enable savvy players to download a new minecraft.jar and test new features. The first Minecraft snapshot, released post Minecraft 1.0 was just released on the 8th / 9th of December (depending on where you are in the world.)

The most notable change in this release was the addition of the wool regrowth mechanic. This article will deal heavily with how wool regrowth works in minecraft, and also delve into the heady matter of keeping your sheep well stocked with grass.

A shorn minecraft sheep eating grass.
A shorn minecraft sheep eating grass.

A Guide To Farming Minecraft Sheep For Wool And Profit

The image above might not look like much, but what you're observing there is a new 'grass eating' animation, which a sheared sheep will do. Why? Because minecraft sheep will now 'eat' grass and regrow their wool. This means that you'll no longer be left with sheep that are for all intents and purposes useless once they've been sheared. The regrowth rate is pretty quick too, I tested it a few times and most sheep with access to grass managed to regrow their wool within 30 seconds or so. I can imagine this rate being nerfed in the future because at the moment all you need is one or two sheep and you pretty much have infinite wool.

Sheep can eat tall grass, or they can eat the 'normal' grass, turning a grass block into a dirt block. Suddenly we have the capacity for fields to be over grazed! Fertilizer will be needed! I'm not sure why I'm using so many exclamation marks, it's probably out of sheer joy at the fact that we're finally seeing older features being fleshed out in ways that not only make sense, but add challenge to the game. Would be sheep farmers should keep in mind the fact that all sheep eat grass, not just the ones that have been shorn. At one time you could just ring some sheep in with a fence and breed them to your heart's content. Now you're going to need to work out the capacity of your fields and possibly build more paddocks if you want a larger flock of sheep. If that's not exciting, then I don't know what is.

Sheep regrow the color of wool they had when they were shorn, this means you can dye a sheep purple, shear it and let it feed and it will grow purple wool back the next time it grows wool. Obtaining colored wool isn't going to be much of a challenge anymore thanks to this change. One wonders how the CTM (complete the monument) survival map makers, who have traditionally relied upon coloured wool being difficulty to come by, will adjust to the change.

This 'wool regrowth' feature is a logical change consistent with real world farming practices and will no doubt serve to hush up critics who have been nattering on about the fact that 1.0 was released with a bunch of unfinished features. I'm impressed, actually I'm more than impressed, I'm downright pleased.

Minecraft Language Settings

A 'language' option has been added to the game, so you can now play Minecraft in a variety of languages, including ones you've probably never heard of before. Educational and very globally aware!


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