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A Crossbow is a Weapon that functions similar to a Bow, but has some additional features. It can be enchanted with multi-shot, quick shot, and piercing. They are currently available in Minecraft: Bedrock Edition, and are planned to be added to Minecraft: Java Edition as part of update 1.14.
A crossbow is an item that can be used to attack mobs, assuming a player has arrows in their inventory. To fire the bow, hold down right-click to charge the shot, then release to fire. The damage and range depend on how far back the arrow was drawn. For best results, shoot at maximum charge. A fully charged crossbow will be known by two ways. First, the crossbow is fully charged when it stops the drawing animation and begins shaking, or the bow's arrow, when shot, will leave a particle trail, much like that of a critical hit when jumping and attacking with a sword.
The crossbow is best used to take on mobs at a distance, or where sword attacks could endanger a player (such as engaging Creepers or skeletons). The crossbow, as well as the bow, is also the best weapon to attack skeletons while swimming because the skeleton's bow will ensure one has a very hard time getting to them unless one has Depth Strider on one's boots.
When fighting a creeper or another mob, try to hit the block beneath it so one can keep a distance as aiming at the torso will slow one down and allow said mob to advance. Shooting from above ledges is the most effective way to kill mobs and/or a player, However, when aiming, stay close to the edge and sneak so one doesn't fall off the ledge. Crossbows are best used when fighting range attack mobs like skeletons. The farther the bow is pulled, the farther the arrow will go.
Bow in PvP
Crossbows are an excellent initiator or full-length combat weapon if the opposing player is without one. The crossbow is also stronger than the bow. To say that the crossbow is "overpowered" is clearly a matter of opinion. A shooter atop a tower would certain seem "overpowered" because the enemies can not reach him. However, on solid ground, sword wielders would easily run him down. However, to a person trying to cross a river or other body or water, a bow is truly something to be feared. To really keep the bow significant, enchanting the bow is nearly required of it in PvP, unless it is simply a defensive weapon in the defense of towers, walls, etc.
Firework rockets can be fired by shooting the crossbow while holding the rockets in the offhand. Firework rockets with higher flight durations will launch further and also have a longer time before they explode. Launching firework rockets with multiple firework stars in them can obscure the targeted player's vision, due to the number of particles produced. Firework rockets also work with the Multi-Shot enchantment, enabling the player to shoot up to 3 rockets at a time.
As of current 1.14 snapshots, the only known enchantments are Multi-Shot, Quick Charge, and Piercing.
- Quick Charge (I–III) – Decreases the reloading time by level * 0.25 seconds. At level III it is slightly faster than bows.
- Multishot (I) – Shoots 3 arrows at once, but will only consume 1 arrow. Also works with firework rockets.
- Piercing (I–IV) – Shoots through level + 1 entity (except Armor Stands and Ender Crystals).