A Nether Fortress is a naturally-generated structure found in The Nether.
Nether fortresses were first introduced in the Beta 1.9 pre-release and 0.12.0 for the Pocket Edition. They include bridge structures constructed of Nether Brick, Nether Brick Fences, and Nether Brick Stairs. They are the only place that Nether Wart can be naturally found in most cases (the exception being the Legacy Console Edition, in which case nether wart is found randomly scattered about the Nether). They often contain many Blaze spawners. They are also the only place where Wither Skeletons spawn naturally. They are very big, and will make a good base in the Nether because of nether brick's blast damage resistance.
Nether fortresses often contain:
- Lava well rooms which separate inside and outside areas.
- Rooms with nether brick Stairs in the center and Soul Sand at sides of the stairways with nether wart growing on it.
- Rooms with blaze spawners, nether brick stairs can lead up to them. The rooms have nether brick fences.
- Rooms with four exits. Some of them could lead only to Netherrack.
- Rooms with a "stairway" of nether brick placed against a wall, leading up to the floor above.
- Windows with fences to look like bars.
- Netherrack tunnels.
- Random chest sitting in certain corners, containing loot.
- Small balconies in the side of the structure.
- Collapsed bridges, usually a dead end.
- The easiest way to find nether fortresses is to proceed either north or south of one's original position.
- Nether fortresses are useful for more than just defensive positions. The blaze spawners, which are unique to nether fortresses, can provide blaze rods for fuel or brewing potions. Wither skeletons can provide their heads and coal, the soul sand can be used to cultivate the already present nether wart, and there's the odd chance that a skeleton could spawn instead of a wither skeleton. Also, the nearby area could be used for harvesting zombie pigmen for their gold nuggets and Rotten Flesh.
- It is possible for nether fortresses to spawn without blaze spawners or nether wart areas. However, it is still possible to find small quantities of nether wart in chests found within the fortress. Blazes are more likely to be found, however, as they naturally spawn in nether fortresses, whether or not there's a spawner present.