Minecraft Wiki
This article is about the hostile mob in Minecraft. For the hostile mob in Minecraft Dungeons, see :MCD:Pillager.
Not to be confused with VillagerWitch or Illager.
See also: Raid captain

Pillagers are hostile mobs armed with crossbows found in wandering patrols, in pillager outposts, or as participants in raids. They attack by firing arrows at the player.


In Java Edition, a pillager spawned by a player using a spawn egg or commands can be a captain which has an ominous banner sticking out of its head.


In Java Edition, the number of pillagers spawning in each patrol varies from one to five and depends on the regional difficulty, with one spawning as a patrol captain. Patrols occur after 512 in-game days, any time and independently of structures, which means they still spawn in worlds without generated structures. A patrol spawns 24 to 48 blocks away from a random player, on the highest solid block. The individual pillagers of a patrol can spawn only at block light level less than 9, regardless of sky light.

In Bedrock Edition, each patrol spawns two to five pillagers. One of these pillagers is a patrol captain. After 512 in-game days, patrols appear 24 to 48 blocks away from the player, at a light level of 7 and below on Easy or any light level on Normal and Hard difficulty.


Pillagers continually spawn in a 72×54×72 block volume centered on the top floor in a pillager outpost. Some pillagers spawn as outpost captains. They may spawn on any valid opaque block if the block light level is less than or equal to 8.

In Java Edition, there can be unlimited pillagers that spawn in outposts naturally, limited only by the natural spawning rules.

In Bedrock Edition, pillagers continually spawn at or below a particular location in the outpost, choosing the highest opaque block with a non-solid block on top and spawning on the northwest corner. A maximum of eight pillagers spawn naturally in an outpost.


In a raid, pillagers are more common in the earlier waves and decrease in number as the waves progress. Despite this, they still constitute the majority of raiders in total.

One pillager spawns riding a ravager in the fifth wave.

In Bedrock Edition, one of the ravagers is ridden by a pillager instead of a vindicator on the seventh wave.

In Java Edition, pillagers spawn during bonus waves and have the largest chance of being the raid captain in the first wave, but in the second wave and onwards, vindicators have a greater chance than pillagers of being the raid captain.


A pillager drops upon death:

  • In Bedrock Edition, pillagers drop 0 - 2 arrows. Each level of the Looting enchantment increases the maximum number of arrows dropped for up to five.
  • There is a 8.5% chance to drop a crossbow when killed by the player or a tamed wolf. The crossbow may be loaded or unloaded depending on the crossbow's state when the pillager dies. The drop chance increases by 1% per level of Looting. The crossbow is of a random durability and has a chance of being enchanted. The chance ranges from 0% to 10% depending on the regional difficulty. The enchantment level is from 5 to 19.
  • 5 experience points and an additional 1–3 points per naturally-spawned equipment when killed by the player or a tamed wolf.
  • Its Illager Banner illager ominous banner if spawned as a captain.
  • 1Ominous Bottle JE1 BE1Ominous Bottle which gives Bad Omen I-V if spawned as a captain.

In Bedrock Edition, pillagers that were spawned by raids have a 6% chance on easy and normal or 80% chance on hard difficulties to drop these:

Special loot chances of dropping
Easy and normal modes Hard mode
An emerald: 8.32% 10.24%
2-3 emeralds: 8.32% 10.24%
4-5 emeralds: 3.33% 4.102%
An enchanted book: 3.33% 4.102%
An iron equipament: 4.16% 5.12%


Pillagers are hostile toward players, iron golems, wandering traders and adult villagers. Pillagers also aid other pillagers attacked by other mobs. In Bedrock Edition, a pillager that accidentally harms a vindicator or evoker causes it to retaliate and attack the pillager. In Java Edition, pillagers do not retaliate on vindicators or evokers that attack them.

Passive Pillager

A passive pillager holding an ominous banner in the right hand.

When a player is in Creative mode or applied with the Invisibility effect, getting near a pillager still causes it to take notice and stare at the player. If a pillager notices an enemy while staring at the player, the pillager stops staring and attacks the enemy. If a player with the invisibility effect attacks a pillager, the pillager still retaliates.

A pillager attacks by shooting arrows from its crossbows every three seconds from up to eight blocks away and pursues enemies for up to 64 blocks in Java Edition or 16 blocks in Bedrock Edition.

Pillagers move slowly when wandering or loading crossbows in Java Edition. In Bedrock Edition, pillagers move from one place to another as fast as when they're provoked, although they stop and look around, pointing their crossbows along. Pillagers point their crossbows at any player or mob they are looking at, whether their crossbows are loaded or unloaded.

A pillager creature is shown staring at a player in creative mode and pointing its crossbow toward.

A pillager stares at the player and points its crossbow toward the player when the player is in creative mode or when the player has the invisibility status effect.

The patrol captain wears an ominous banner, known as the illager banner in Bedrock and Education Editions, on its head. The other illagers follow the captain around. The pillagers that are part of a patrol do not attack immediately. The patrol members' heads turn to follow the player or mob who attracted their attention. If the player or villager-like mob attacks or approaches within ten blocks of the patrol members, then this provokes them into loading their crossbows and attacking.[1]

If raiding pillagers kill all the villagers in a village, they celebrate their victory by jumping and laughing. Unarmed pillagers also cheer. In Bedrock Edition, pillagers wave their arms while holding their crossbows in their main hand when cheering.

Pillagers can take and equip illager banners within 3 blocks, but non-raider pillagers do not search for ominous banners.

In Java Edition, if a pillager gets attacked by a mob (excluding illagers and goats) or player, it will alert other pillagers to target the attacker unless the pillager was killed in one hit.

Crossbow usage[]

Java Edition[]

Pillagers can also use crossbows in their off-hand. When a pillager finds a target, the pillager chases the target, then locks the target in its attack range and loads its crossbow.

Pillagers with their crossbows loaded can attack at any blocks away if the target is out of their attack range.

Pillagers, unlike evokers or vindicators, attack on sight, not regarding distance, although attacking a pillager, vindicator or evoker far away causes the attacked illager and the same type of illagers around the attacked illager to attack the player regardless of distance.

The command /summon pillager ~ ~ ~ {} summons a passive pillager that does not attack.

A pillager's crossbow eventually breaks with repeated use, unlike weapons wielded by other mobs.[2] Unarmed pillagers are passive toward the player, iron golems and villagers, but they still frighten villagers and iron golems are still hostile toward them. This also includes pillagers that don't have a crossbow, which means any pillagers with a sword or any weapon other than a crossbow are still passive. An unarmed pillager always faces any player in its field of view or any mob that attacks it.

A pillager spawned with arrows or firework rockets in its off-hand slot will use them, depleting the stack over time and switching to regular arrows once running out of ammo.[3] When firing firework rockets, pillagers will aim above the target as when using arrows, despite rockets being unaffected by gravity.[4]

If a pillager's arrow hits a neutral or hostile mob by accident, the mob attacks the pillager.

Bedrock Edition[]

Pillagers cannot use their crossbows in their off-hand, as mobs cannot use weapons in their off-hand, just like players.

Java Pillager and Bedrock Pillager texture

The different of the pillagers texture in Java (left) and Bedrock (right) Edition.

Pillagers use an outdated behavior.[5][6] They also have different arm textures.[7] Pillagers load their crossbows upon spawning or if their crossbows are unloaded. When a pillager finds a target, it loads its crossbow first, chases the target and attacks upon in range. Pillagers are not hostile to players before their crossbows are loaded, so sometimes they don't look at players or run around while loading their crossbows.

A dispenser can equip a pillager with armor. However, an armor item isn't rendered on pillagers.

If a player summons a pillager without a crossbow by spawn event command, it still shoots arrows to attack targets, like other arrow-shooting ranged mobs. This is due to the fact that in the pillager.json and ranged piglin.json files, the component_groups have both minecraft:behavior.ranged_attack and minecraft:behavior.charge_held_item, so if a pillager does not have a crossbow, the charge_held_item behavior cannot trigger and it continuously shoots arrows due to the ranged_attack behavior.

Unlike in Java Edition, the crossbows of pillagers in Bedrock Edition don't break.[8]

Pillagers use a melee attack while underwater, unlike pillagers in Java Edition that maintain using crossbows underwater, although the shot arrows travel slower underwater and sink after a short distance.

Bad Omen[]

A player receives the Bad Omen status effect by drinking an Ominous Potion. The effect lasts for 100 minutes (five in-game days) and can be removed by drinking milk. When a player afflicted with Bad Omen enters a village, a raid commences in that village, bringing about waves of illagers that seek and try to kill all villagers.

Each patrol spawns one pillager captain. While outposts can continually spawn pillager captains, each captain inflicts the player who killed it with one level of Bad Omen upon death.

Raid captains do not inflict Bad Omen when defeated in a raid.

In Java Edition, killing multiple captains in succession raises the Bad Omen level to a maximum of V, increasing the chance of pillagers and vindicators in the resulting raid wielding enchanted weapons. As long as the Bad Omen level is higher than I, the resulting raid includes an additional wave with a raider composition identical to that of the last wave.


Java Edition:
Pillagers use the Hostile Creatures sound category for entity-dependent sound events.

SoundSubtitlesSourceDescriptionResource locationTranslation keyVolumePitchAttenuation
Pillager murmursHostile CreaturesRandomlyentity.pillager.ambientsubtitles.entity.pillager.ambient1.00.8-1.216
Pillager cheersHostile CreaturesWhen a pillager has won a raidentity.pillager.celebratesubtitles.entity.pillager.celebrate1.00.8-1.216
Pillager diesHostile CreaturesWhen a pillager diesentity.pillager.deathsubtitles.entity.pillager.death1.00.8-1.216
Pillager hurtsHostile CreaturesWhen a pillager is damagedentity.pillager.hurtsubtitles.entity.pillager.hurt1.00.8-1.216

Bedrock Edition:

SoundSourceDescriptionResource locationVolumePitch
Hostile CreaturesRandomlymob.pillager.idle1.00.8-1.2
Hostile CreaturesRandomly while in a raidmob.pillager.idle3.00.8-1.2
Hostile CreaturesWhen a pillager has won a raidmob.pllager.celebrate[sound 1]1.00.8-1.2
Hostile CreaturesWhen a pillager diesmob.pillager.death1.00.8-1.2
Hostile CreaturesWhen a pillager is damagedmob.pillager.hurt1.00.8-1.2
  1. Due to a typo, the third sound for pillager celebrating is unused. See MCPE-121058.

Data values[]


Java Edition:

NameIdentifierEntity tags (JE)Translation key

Bedrock Edition:

NameIdentifierNumeric ID Translation key

Entity data[]

Pillagers have entity data associated with them that contains various properties.

Java Edition:

Main article: Entity format
  • Entity data
    • Tags common to all entities
    • Tags common to all mobs
    • Tags common to all mobs spawnable in raids
    •  Inventory: Each compound tag in this list is an item in the pillager's inventory, up to a maximum of 5 slots. Items in two or more slots that can be stacked together are automatically be condensed into one slot. Pillagers don't change their inventory automatically or drop items from it upon death. The inventory is currently unused.[more information needed]
      • An item in the inventory, excluding the Slot tag.
        • Tags common to all items

Bedrock Edition:

See Bedrock Edition level format/Entity format.


Icon Achievement In-game description Actual requirements (if different) Gamerscore earned Trophy type (PS4)
PS4 Other
Monster HunterAttack and destroy a monster.Kill a hostile mob or one of the following neutral mobs: an enderman, a piglin, a zombified piglin, a spider, or a cave spider.15GBronze


Icon Advancement In-game description Parent Actual requirements (if different) Resource location
Advancement-plain-rawNot Today, Thank You
Deflect a projectile with a Shield Suit UpBlock any projectile with a shield.story/deflect_arrow
Adventure, exploration and combat Kill any entity, or be killed by any entity.adventure/root
Advancement-plain-rawVoluntary Exile
Kill a raid captain.
Maybe consider staying away from villages for the time being...
AdventureKill an entity in the #raiders entity tag wearing an ominous banner.
This is a hidden advancement, meaning that it can be viewed by the player only after completing it, regardless of if its child advancement(s), if any, have been completed.
Advancement-plain-rawMonster Hunter
Kill any hostile monster AdventureKill one of these 34 mobs: Only the riders of the chicken jockeys and skeleton horsemen are counted in this advancement. Other mobs may be killed, but are ignored for this advancement.adventure/kill_a_mob
Advancement-fancy-rawIt Spreads
Kill a mob near a Sculk Catalyst Monster HunterKill one of these 70 mobs near a sculk catalyst: Mobs that drop no experience are ignored for this advancement.adventure/kill_mob_near_sculk_catalyst
Advancement-fancy-rawMonsters Hunted
Kill one of every hostile monster Monster HunterKill each of these 34 mobs: Other mobs may be killed, but are ignored for this advancement. Only the riders of the chicken jockeys and skeleton horsemen are counted in this advancement.adventure/kill_all_mobs
Advancement-plain-rawWho's the Pillager Now?
Give a Pillager a taste of their own medicine Ol' BetsyKill a pillager with a crossbow.adventure/whos_the_pillager_now


Missing Model JE3
This section would benefit from the addition of more images. 
Please remove this notice once you've added suitable images to the article.
The specific instructions are:
  • Pillagers before Bedrock Edition Beta
  • Renders of unarmed pillagers before and after 20w29a (MC-158735)
March 27, 2017Jeb replies to a Reddit post suggesting to add pillagers, saying that they were already planned to be added in the future.
September 29, 2018Pillagers are announced at MINECON Earth 2018.
Java Edition
1.1418w43aPillager JE1 Added pillagers.
18w45aPillagers can now spawn naturally during illager patrols.
18w46aThe pillager's AI has been improved.
Pillagers no longer drop emeralds.
18w47aPillagers now spawn as part of raids.
Pillagers now spawn around pillager outposts.
18w47bPillagers now spawn less often around pillager outposts.
Pillagers no longer cross their arms when not equipped with a crossbow, which has changed the poses from Pillager (unarmed) Revision 1 to Pillager (unarmed) Revision 2.
19w09aPillagers can now use tipped arrows and fireworks in their offhand when shooting their crossbow.
19w13aPillagers can now open doors during raids.
Pillager celebrating If raiding pillagers killed all the villagers in the village or the beds were destroyed, pillagers celebrate their victory by laughing and jumping.
19w14aPillagers no longer open doors during raids.
1.14.4pre4Pillager JE2 The pillager's arm texture has been changed.
1.1519w39aPillager (unarmed) Revision 3 Pillagers no longer have arms when they're not armed with a crossbow.
19w45aPillager (unarmed) Revision 4 Both of the arms of pillagers now display correctly even if the pillager does not have an armed crossbow.
1.16.220w29aThe attack animation of unarmed pillagers has been changed.
1.1821w37aPillagers no longer attack baby villagers.
Pre-release 1Pillagers can now spawn on snow blocks.
1.1922w17aPillager JE3 Changed its model, slightly shortened its coat to match its actual texture.
Bedrock Edition
1.9.0beta Added pillagers.
Pillagers do not have sounds or animations.
beta now have the crossbow animations and reloading sounds.
beta crossbow held in the pillager's hand is now larger.
1.10.0beta now have their own sounds.
Pillagers are no longer available only through Experimental Gameplay.
Pillagers now spawn around pillager outposts.
1.11.0beta now spawn as part of illager patrols and during raids.
Pillagers can now spawn as a raid captain.
Pillagers no longer attack baby villagers.
Pillagers can now ride ravagers.
beta in raids may now drop special items when killed.
1.13.0beta celebrating BE If raiding pillagers killed all the villagers in the village or the beds were destroyed, pillagers celebrate their victory by laughing and raising their arms in the air.
releaseLooting now increases the crossbow drop chance for pillagers by 1% per level, rather than 12%, to bring parity with Java Edition.
1.16.0beta no longer load their crossbows after spawning, and now load their crossbows only when they find their target.
The unloaded crossbow pose of pillagers has been changed to Pillager BE1, the same pose as a piglin with a crossbow.
Pillagers now pick up illager banners within 3 distances from it.
PlayStation 4 Edition
1.90Pillager Added pillagers.
Pillagers are available only in creative mode.
1.91Pillagers now spawn in raids, illager patrols and around pillager outposts.
Pillagers can now spawn as a raid captain.
Pillagers can now ride ravagers.


Issues relating to "Pillager" are maintained on the bug tracker. Report issues there.


  • Alongside crossbows, pillagers were taken from Minecraft Dungeons, even though they were added to the base game first.[9]
  • Pillagers were added in Village & Pillage as a means to give villagers a "true" adversary in order to balance the new village mechanics.[10]
  • An original design of the pillager appeared like a pirate wearing an orange vest. However, Mojang Studios' mob designers changed the mob's design to look more like brigandine armor.
  • In Bedrock Edition, a running pillager uses the player's running animation rather than that of other illagers.
  • Summoning an unarmed pillager in Java Edition that is invulnerable (/summon pillager ~ ~ ~ {Invulnerable:1b}) does not cause villagers to run away from the pillager.
  • Typing /summon pillager ~ ~ ~ minecraft:calm in Bedrock Edition cause the summoned pillager to not attack players.
  • A pillager has a 116,000 chance of dropping a crossbow enchanted with two Piercing I enchantments, a 1409,000 chance of dropping one with Piercing I and Multishot and a 13,500,000 chance of dropping one with Piercing I, Multishot, Unbreaking III and Quick Charge I. These probabilities were calculated with pillagers spawned from patrols or outposts, because pillagers spawned from higher levels of raids have an increased chance of dropping enchanted crossbows. Also with maximum regional difficulty, as this affects the chance of a dropped crossbow being enchanted.





Concept Art[]

In other media[]


  1. MC-148387
  2. MC-163960 — resolved as "Works As Intended".
  3. MC-145121
  4. MC-145114
  5. MCPE-143949 — Pillager Outdate AI
  6. MC-137755 — "Pillagers are near enemies when attacking" — resolved as "Fixed".
  7. MCPE-48628 — Pillager has broken arm texture in BE
  8. MCPE-67489 — Pillager doesn't break their crossbow
  9. "March 2021 developper Q&A" – discord.com, March 11, 2021.
  10. Meet the Pillagers