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Blocking is a gameplay mechanic which allows players to block attacks.


Computer edition[]

A player holding a custom shield while blocking.

Shields are used for blocking incoming attacks. Using one causes the player to slow to a sneaking pace, and blockable attacks coming from the front of the player will be negated. Knockback from projectiles is prevented, but not from melee attacks. Any effects from the attacker (e.g. Wither or fire) will not be placed on the defender. A successful block is indicated by a sound and the shield taking damage.

Blockable attacks include mob melee attacks, arrows, fireballs, thrown items such as snowballs, damage from Thorns, and some explosions (e.g. creeper explosions or TNT ignited by another player are blockable, but not TNT ignited by yourself or by a redstone mechanism).

Console edition[]

Swords are used for blocking incoming attacks. Blocking can decrease damage from arrows and explosions, by holding down the respective button for the console used (ex. Left Trigger on Xbox 360) while wielding any type of sword. Blocked attacks deal only half the normal damage they normally would. Blocking does not decrease the sword's durability.

While blocking, the player moves at a speed slower than if they were sneaking.



1.81.8-pre1Added blocking.
1.8-pre2Prior to this version, blocking didn't block any damage in multiplayer.
Official release
1.0.0Beta 1.9-pre1Prior to this version, the player only changed the position of their sword. This was changed in said update, where the player also moved their hand outwards. Players used to be able to rise faster when blocking while swimming underwater, and attacking while blocking used to only register when the player stopped blocking.
Blocking no longer decreases fall damage. Blocking previously allowed the player to fall 42 blocks without dying, instead of 22.
1.915w33cThe blocking functionality of swords was removed and is replaced with the functionality of shields.
15w34cWhen an attack is blocked by a shield, the attacker may be knocked back.
Being attacked with an axe may disable the shield for 5 seconds.
15w37aCooldown reduced from 0.5 seconds to 0.25 seconds.
Blocking now prevents some side effects.
Arrows now rickochet off shields.
15w47bAdded shield blocking sounds.
16w07aAdded more variation of shield blocking sounds.
1.1116w35aShields now block 100% of the damage.
Console Edition
TU5CU11.0Patch 1Added the ability to block with swords.
TU57CU491.56Patch 27Blocking damage with a sword now plays the sound for blocking with a shield.


Issues relating to “Blocking” are maintained on the issue tracker. Report issues there.


  • Blocking allows for the slowest movements possible. This can occur when the player blocks, sneaks, and moves backward while under the effect of the slowness potion while going through cobwebs placed above still water on top of Soul Sand that is placed on top of ice. This causes the player to move at about 1/32 blocks a second,(needs recalculation after new additions) or 1/2 pixel a second (1 Pixel every 12-13s w/ new calculations) on a default 16x16 texture pack. Blocking while sneaking and with the additional events (but without slowness potion) allows the player go at roughly 0.023854961832 blocks per second (1 block every 41.92 seconds).

See also[]