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One of the things about Minecraft is that it doesn’t really have a story. There are all sorts of things you can do, but it doesn’t have a plot or characters, so Minecraft Dungeons was interesting because hey, we actually have a plot and characters and things happen in a sequence!

Matt Forbeck, author of Minecraft Dungeons: The Rise of the Arch-Illager[1]

Minecraft Dungeons: The Rise of the Arch-Illager, is a Minecraft Dungeons prequel novel. It is authored by Matt Forbeck and was published by Del Rey Books on July 7, 2020 in North America and July 9, 2020 in the United Kingdom.[1][2] An audiobook was also released on July 7, 2020, with narration provided by Dan Bittner.[2]

The novel expands upon the opening cinematic in the game, acting as a prequel.


Brave heroes have banded together to take a perilous journey through the war-riven overworld to defeat the Arch-Illager and his formidable army. But how did that army come to be? And just where did the Arch-Illager come from?

The terrible truth behind the Arch-Illager is that he never asked for ultimate power. Known as Archie, this little Illager is bullied by his fellow Illagers and mistrusted by fearful Villagers. Archie only ever wanted a place to call home but he finds himself shunned by all. As he wanders through deep forests and up craggy mountains, he stumbles upon a dark cavern—with a sinister secret waiting inside. Archie discovers an object which whispers to him promises of power: the Orb of Dominance. With it, Archie realizes he can wield incredible magic and reshape a world that turned its back on him. All he needs to do is exactly what it tells him.

After all, it’s called the Orb of Dominance for a reason, right? But is it named for the way Archie uses it—or is it using him?[2]


Spoiler warning
Spoiler warning! This section contains detailed information about Minecraft Dungeons: The Rise of the Arch-Illager that may spoil your enjoyment of it. Read at your own risk!

Prologue and Chapters 1–7

First Interlude and Chapters 8–14

Chapters 15–18, Second Interlude, and Chapters 19–21

Chapters 22–27 and Epilogue



Character Section
Chapter 1-7 Chapter 8-14 Chapter 15-18 Chapter 22-27
Adriene Yes Yes Yes Yes
Hal Yes Yes Yes Yes
Hex Yes Yes Yes Yes
Karl Yes Yes Yes Yes
Valorie Yes Yes Yes Yes
Evoker Fang No Yes Yes No
Orb of Dominance No Yes Yes Yes
Archie Yes Yes Yes Yes
Chandra Yes No No No
Creeper No Yes No No
Evoker Yes Yes Yes Yes
Farouk Yes No No No
Husk No Yes Yes Yes
Iron golem Yes Yes No Yes
Liam Yes No No No
Nameless One No No Yes No
Nanuq Yes No No No
Necromancer No Yes Yes No
Pillager No No Yes Yes
Redstone golem No Yes Yes Yes
Redstone Monstrosity No No No Yes
Royal guard No Yes Yes Yes
Salah Yes No No Yes
Skeleton No Yes Yes Yes
Spider No Yes No No
Thord Yes Yes Yes No
Vex No Yes Yes No
Villager Yes Yes Yes Yes
Vindicator Yes Yes Yes Yes
Wendy Yes No No No
Xu Yes No No No
Yumi Yes Yes Yes Yes
Walda Yes Yes Yes Yes
Zombie Yes Yes Yes Yes
Zuri Yes No No No