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'Minecraft' Update 1.13: New Aquatic Mobs Have Arrived

Updated on March 3, 2018

Creatures of the Deep

Minecraft’s oceans are looking lively and lovely after three snapshot builds that introduced a metaphorical ton of new features. Among the additions came four new, water-dwelling, creatures and the community selected mob from last year’s Minecon: the Phantom.

Turtles: Sublime, Majestic and “Totes adorbs”

The first 1.13 mob to grace Minecraft with its presence was the Turtle. These gentle creatures have several unique mechanics.

-All turtles have a home beach that they will return to, no matter how far away they roam.

-Also, they lay eggs! Although chickens have been laying eggs for awhile, chicken eggs only drop as an item and don’t hatch; Turtle eggs, on the other hand, do hatch, are laid in little clusters that take up a block and can be collected using a tool enchanted with “Silk Touch.”

-Turtles can be encouraged to breed by feeding them seagrass.

-Eggs hatch at night, and the babies will have their home beach set to the location that their egg was first laid.

-Once born, these tiny turtles will run toward the nearest body of water as quickly as they can. Rightly so, too, baby turtles and turtle eggs will be attacked by hostile mobs, so players may need to help protect the clutch.

-When the baby turtles grow into adults, they drop a piece of turtle shell called “Scute.”

Pufferfish: It's a little nervous because I'm too close.
Pufferfish: It's a little nervous because I'm too close.

Fishy Business in the Briney Deep, and the Other Deeps too

In the 18w08b snapshot, released following the introduction of turtles, Mojang sank their coding talent into underwater creatures once again. This time they added actual fish that spawn in the depths. Better start brainstorming aquarium designs, because these fish can easily be moved with a water bucket!

-So far only three of the four varieties of Minecraft’s fish have been added. These three are Pufferfish, Salmon, and Cod which seems to replace the previously extremely generic “fish” item. Clownfish are the only fish that haven’t been added, although it seems likely that they will be soon.

-Fish now spawn in specific biomes. Cod spawn in cold, normal, and lukewarm ocean biomes. Pufferfish spawn in lukewarm and warm ocean biomes. And Salmon spawn in frozen and cold ocean biomes, and in rivers.

-The different types of fish have different behaviors. Cod and Salmon swim towards other fish of the same type and form small schools. Pufferfish have multiple different startled animations, swelling up if the player gets to close.

-If a player is stung by a pufferfish they will gain the “poison” debuff.

-Fish can be picked up and moved by right-clicking on them with a water bucket, and once moved won’t despawn.

-Fish drop their item variant when they die.

-If a fish finds itself out of water it will flop around on its side, moving toward any water nearby. However, if it doesn’t make it back to water fast enough, it will asphyxiate and drop its item.

-It is unclear how these fish mobs will affect existing fishing mechanics going forward. However, it is a reasonable guess that fish caught will be dependant on biome.


Another thing of note: Although squid have been in the game for several years, they got some attention in snapshot 18w07a. Squid now ink when attacked, creating black particles in the water. Possibly in the future, this will tie into the new underwater visibility mechanics.

A Phantom swooping down from the inky black to administer punishment.
A Phantom swooping down from the inky black to administer punishment.

Children Better Go to Bed on Time or the Phantom will Swoop Down and Get Them!

Although the limelight for snapshot 18w07c was mostly stolen by turtles, Phantoms can’t be forgotten. This mob earned a spot in the game during Minecon Earth, where players voted live on four different mob concepts. Initially teased as “Mob B: Terror of the Night Skies,” the Phantom spawns to attack players suffering from insomnia.

-The Phantom spawns after five consecutive nights (three days) without sleeping in a bed. This is approximately one hour of gameplay. The time since a player has last slept is reset if a player dies.

-Phantoms spawns at night when player’s y coordinates are greater than 64 (commonly known as sea level in-game) and they have a clear view of the sky. Initially, Phantoms spawned in both the overworld and the end, although attempting to sleep in the end will cause the player’s bed to explode; As of snapshot 18w09a however, Phantoms only spawn in the overworld.

-Phantoms have bright green eyes and a dark texture, reminiscent of the enderman mob.

-Phantoms attack by swooping down, out of the sky, to strike players before swooping back up and out of reach.

-Phantoms hit for three hearts of damage on unarmored targets and have a large pool of health themselves. This makes fighting a pack of them very challenging.

-When a Phantom dies it drops leather, however, Mojang’s official snapshot news states that “...this may change”.

-Phantoms already have sound effects, which is unusual for such a recently added mob.


Minecraft’s oceans are already starting to teeming with new creatures and even more, have been teased for the future (Will we be able to saddle dolphins? These are the important questions in life, after all.). Players stay tuned and don’t forget to check out this article about 1.13’s upcoming gameplay additions.

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    • profile image

      Nicci 7 weeks ago

      It's kinda crazy that we will actually finally have aquariums!

    • Isaac Wren profile image
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      Isaac Wren 7 weeks ago from United States

      Yeah, the pufferfish are really adorable! They're definitely going to be the stars, in a lot of aquariums.

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      Have You Seen 7 weeks ago

      OMG...the pufferfish is so cute!

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