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An average three-story woodland mansion.

Woodland mansions are massive structures found in Dark Forests. They are highly anticipated to explore because they are one of the only reliable ways to find the totem of undying, and contain valuable loot in large quantities.

Exploration checklist[]

Exploring a mansion requires a lot of preparation, but not everyone has the same skills. So depending on how skilled you are, different preparations may be needed. The following is a suggested collection of equipment you might need:

  • A diamond sword at minimum. Enchantments such as Sharpness and Fire Aspect will give you an easier time fighting the illagers, while Knockback helps keep a safe distance from vindicators.
  • A bow for ranged combat against evokers. Enchantments such as Power and Flame enable quicker kills, while Punch knocks the illagers back a safe distance.
    • Crossbows are an alternative to bows, the choice depends on the player's preference.
  • One arrow with a bow or crossbow enchanted with Infinity, or a stack of 64 at minimum
  • A full set of high-durability diamond armor at minimum. Protection allows you to take less damage from evocation fangs, even though evocation fangs bypass armor, and guarantee higher survivability against a vindicator’s ambushes.
  • A iron axe or multiple gold axes for breaking through walls and revealing secret rooms.
  • Highly nutritious food, such as bread, baked potatoes or cooked meat
  • A shield for protection against vexes, as well as vindicators as they cannot disable shields ‌[Bedrock Edition only].
  • A stack of 64 cobblestone, dirt or any other expendable block for quick towering, hiding, etc.
  • A bed to set your respawn point outside the mansion in case you die
  • Several stacks of torches to light up the mansion and prevent common hostile mobs from spawning
  • A woodland explorer map to track down the mansion

Optional equipment[]

  • A pair of elytra (with firework rockets) to get to the mansion as fast as possible
  • A trident enchanted with Riptide makes travel even faster during storms
  • An anvil to repair your tools (required if doing the "Here's Johnny!" tactic)
  • A few golden apples for quick healing cover
  • Can be substituted for enchanted apples
  • Healing or regeneration potions for faster health recovery
  • A few strength potions for the upper hand in combat
  • A few shulker boxes and an ender chest for easier transportation of items
  • A few ender pearls for quick escape, if necessary
  • A few stacks of harming arrows or poisoned arrows for easier elimination of enemies
  • A few invisibility potions for unnoticed infiltration
  • A flint and steel, preferably enchanted with Unbreaking, if you want to burn down the mansion. The unbreaking enchantment increases the durability of your flint and steel since the mansion is huge.
  • A few blocks of iron and a few carved pumpkin to spawn Iron Golems which can be a distraction to the vindicators and evokers and assist you in battle. The iron golems won't attack you if you accidently hit it.
  • A few name tags to name a vindicator "Johnny" so other mobs in the mansion can distract it.
  • A sheep and a few Blue Dyes to dye the sheep blue and using it to distract the evokers.

Preparing equipment[]

It is important you grab the necessary equipment to distract and kill the illagers in the mansion, don't bring items you don't need such as all your diamonds or you might lose them forever.

Sword / Axe[]

Your sword or axe is your primary melee weapon for eliminating vindicators or cornering evokers. Although the durability of axes decreases more rapidly when used as a weapon, critical hits deal extremely heavy, if not fatal, blows to your target, and they can also be used to punch through walls for uncovering secret rooms.

Bow / Crossbow[]

Your bow, a secondary weapon, should be used for taking out enemies from a distance if there are many gathered together. When in melee combat, it is always safer to fall back to ranged combat if you’re swarmed by illagers. If you take a crossbow with you, however, make sure that an arrow has already been loaded for a faster first shot.

Armor[]

Armor is a must-have when exploring a mansion, because vindicators have one of the strongest direct attacks of any hostile mob, and vexes also have substantial melee damage. Iron armor should be worn at minimum, and Protection helps to reduce damage from evocation fangs that would otherwise completely bypass armor and shields.

Food[]

Nutritious food, such as steak, cooked porkchops, and bread are absolutely necessary for healing after a fight. The food can also heal your hunger bar so you can sprint.

Expendable blocks[]

Cobblestone and dirt are the go-to expendable block for building a protective cover to heal, towering or bridging your way across. Although dirt is much easier to gather, keep in mind that it’s not as tough and can be destroyed by a creeper explosion. However, if evocation fangs are coming your way, use dirt instead of cobblestone to build a barrier such that you can quickly mine and escape if the fangs pass through.

Torches[]

A few stacks of torches provide better visibility in dark corners, and prevent common mobs such as zombies, skeletons etc. from spawning.

Water bucket[]

Used to break your fall. Necessary for all missions, no matter the difficulty.

Shield[]

A shield (or two for backup) is recommended for a mansion venture because it can be used to block melee attacks. Just be more careful when using a shield against vindicators, as their axe attacks can disable itJava Edition only.

Explorer map[]

The main way to locate a woodland mansion without cheats. Woodland explorer maps can be obtained from cartographer villagers.

Elytra[]

As mansions are typically thousands of blocks away, a pair of elytra combined with firework rockets will suffice for a speedier and more efficient journey to the mansion. Just make sure you’ve packed enough phantom membranes for repair, or enchanted the elytra with Unbreaking (and possibly Mending) for it to last longer.

Healing items[]

Powerful illager attacks can bring you to a vulnerable state at times, so golden apples, healing potions and regeneration potions will come in handy for a swift healing cover. Enchanted apples can heal you more than regular ones, but since they are extremely rare, use them sparingly if you get your hands on some.

If you do obtain a Totem of Undying by killing an evoker, do place it in your left hand slot as soon as possible, as shields aren’t as useful in woodland mansions due to the illagers’ shield-piercing or shield-disabling attacks.

Helpful potions[]

Potions enhance your performance, which can be highly beneficial although not necessary. Strength potions can give you the edge in combat, while invisibility potions can allow you to sneak into loot rooms given that you’re unarmored.

Ender chest / shulker boxes[]

These make transportation of loot much easier, as mansions are sometimes very far, even thousands or millions of blocks from the spawn point. You can even pack backup gear in the ender chest, which you can place at the mansion’s entrance along with a bed, such that if you die, you’ll be able to respawn at your ender chest and quickly ready yourself for a counterattack. Bring at least 6 shulker boxes and put them in your ender chest. Bring a silk touch pickaxe to pick up the ender chest. There is a lot of loot and most of the furniture can be dismantled for additional blocks. You will want a way to store them, and you don't want to clutter your inventory. Diamond hoes, chestplates, and totems of undying are non-stackable and can take up a lot of space in your inventory.

Ender pearls[]

Ender pearls can be used for quick travel across mansion floors, or escaping from a crowd of illagers. On the journey, if your elytra breaks while you are flying, throw an ender pearl to the ground to break your fall.

Name tags[]

Using the "Here's Johnny!" tactic, you can easily distract the vindicators and kill them easier. To do this you need an anvil or if you already have an anvil back at your base, name the name tags "Johnny" before you go to the mansion. You also need a few name tags named "Johnny" to name the vindicators. Once you got the name tags, you can try to find a vindicator with hostile mobs or you can lure zombies to the vindicator. Once that is complete, be fast! Name the vindicator "Johnny" with one of your name tags it'll attack the zombie. The point of this is not to make the vindicator do your dirty work, but to distract it on another mob so you can kill it without it coming towards you.

Iron golems[]

You can bring a iron golem from a village or make your own, but it is suggested that you make the iron golem yourself since if you accidently hit it it won't retaliate like the naturally spawned golem, it is also hard to move the iron golem across rivers and trees if you decide to steal one from a village, and it might die fighting hostile mobs before it got to the mansion. Iron golems can assist you in battle against the illagers or distract the illagers, and if the iron golem survives the battle, it can be your bodyguard. It is also advised the you make the iron golem before you enter the battle since vindicators can knock you while you're placing the blocks and make you misplace the block. Use leads to move the iron golem around or lure a vindicator or an evoker into the iron golem's sight (make the vindicator or evoker follow you to the iron golem, evokers might be hard since they like to stand in the same place, best way is to stand at the edge of the evoker's line of sight and when it summons something it might move closer to you and follows you) and the iron golem will attack it, the you can lure more vindicators and evokers into the iron golem's range. Keep on repeating this process until you can't find any more illagers in the mansion. After that, you can loot the mansion, turn it into your base, or burn it down.

Blue sheep[]

Bringing a sheep from a nearby village or finding one around the mansion can be good for distracting evokers. Bring some blue dyes so you can dye the sheep blue. Bring the sheep in the mansion when you see an evoker. Dyeing the sheep blue can provide a distraction to the evoker and gives it a cooldown time before it could summon anything else. To move the sheep around, either hold wheat to make it follow you or use a lead if you have one. When you see an evoker you can bring the blue sheep and your blue dyes to the evoker. Make sure you dye your sheep blue before you approach the evoker, as it sees a normal sheep it might do a fang attack instead, hurting both you and your sheep. If the evoker sees the blue sheep it will dye it red, giving you time to dye the sheep blue again and hit the evoker a couple times while it is still on its cooldown. Do this to every evoker until all the evokers in the mansion is dead, then you can take any vindicators you see in the mansion. Don't worry too much about vindicators killing your sheep, since they will attack you instead of the sheep. Make sure you know where your sheep is before you die in case if you die it wanders out of the mansion or it gets lost in a corridor.

Getting there[]

Obtaining the map[]

The woodland explorer map trade, which requires emeralds and a compass.

Players begin their mansion journey with a woodland explorer map, which can be obtained by trading with a journeyman cartographer for around 14 emeralds and a compass In Java Edition. If you are playing on hard mode, you can convert villagers to zombie villagers and convert back using a golden apple and splash potion of weakness It makes the price discount. This is totally optinal, the cartographer always sells the map, but in Bedrock Edition, they have a 13 chance to sell it. Besides a map’s regular features, the explorer map has a house-shaped icon that indicates where the mansion is.

Finding new places[]

Since the journey to the mansion is extremely long, chances are you’ll discover new places along the way, some of which contain extra loot. Do explore them before continuing on your journey as you might be able to stock up on supplies for your upcoming raid. Blacksmiths in villages and temples are among the more useful structures you’ll find. You can also find many other biomes and rare structures. If you find a ocean monument, keep the coordinates of it because ocean monuments require different equipment.

Temporary camp[]

Before you enter the mansion, you should set up a small base at its cobblestone entrance, where it is pre-lit by torches. Build a fence around the entrance to prevent hostile mobs from trespassing. Bring a bed so you can sleep at night and set your spawn point here temporary unless you want to use the mansion as your base. Make a smoker to prepare extra food and position your ender chest beside your bed. Don’t forget to bring along your shulker box if you have one, as you can store more items with it! Surround your camp with a roof to prevent hostile mobs from attacking you while you're sleeping.

Navigating the mansion[]

Stay alert as you explore. There’s nothing more awful than getting surprised by a creeper explosion and dying on the spot, losing all your experience points in the process. Vindicator ambushes are another threat as they deal hefty amounts of damage, also having a chance to kill you if you're playing on hard difficulty.

For added security, you could head to the second floor immediately to kill an evoker and get its Totem of Undying, before exploring normally afterwards floor-by-floor.

If you spot groups of illagers in the distance, use a ranged weapon to take them out one-by-one. Against lone ones, however, don’t hesitate to dispatch them with your sword or axe.

Don't bother looking in storage room chests; they contain nothing, and looking through them leaves you vulnerable to vindicator ambushes.

Always look out for solid walls where windows should be, or strange missing spaces in-between rooms; these could indicate a secret room behind. Two of them contain obsidian with a diamond block in the center, so be sure to take with you a diamond pickaxe to extract the diamonds within.

If you plan to make the mansion your base, be sure to light up every room to prevent hostile mob spawning. Be careful not to accidentally set anything on fire or let creepers sneak up on you, although having a clump of vindicators near you while the creeper is about to blow up could be an advantage.

Killing the mobs[]

Vindicator[]

Vindicators have 24♥ × 12 HP, which means they’re not the beefiest mobs out there. However, their punishing axe blows deal a maximum of 19♥ × 9.5 damage on Hard difficulty, and are especially dangerous if their axes are enchanted.

  • In Java Edition shields are redundant, so quickly attack them until they die.
  • Against a group, either strike before retreating, or build a 3-block tall pillar to hit your assailants from above.
  • They drop 0-2 emeralds upon death and have a chance of dropping their iron axe as well.
  • Try not to run into a group of vindicators because if each of them attack you it's easy to lose a lot of health.
  • If there are any hostile mobs such as zombies around you or the vindicator, quickly lure the zombies to the vindicator and name the vindicator "Johnny" with your name tags so you can attack the vindicator while it's attacking the zombies. That way you can easily dispatch the vindicator without it's attention entirely on you. Skeletons aren't a good idea, unless you make them accidently shoot the vindicator instead, which require good skills.
  • Using a bow to kill them is a good idea, you can also locate a vindicator, stay away from it, and build a 3-block tall pillar so you can snipe the vindicator from the top of the pillar. If your bow is enchanted with Flame or Power, you can snipe it from far away so it can kill the vindicator in one hit. If you miss, it doesn't matter. The vindicator doesn't care if a arrow sails over its head, so you can snipe it again until it dies.
  • The best strategy is attacking and running backwards so you can knock the vindicator away while running backwards, but be careful, vindicators can ambush you from behind if you don't pay attention to your surroundings.

Evoker[]

Evokers have 24♥ × 12 HP like vindicators, but have a more unconventional fighting style. When within a 16-block radius, they summon a row of evocation fangs that bypass armor and shields, and when cornered, they summon a ring of said fangs instead. Evokers may also summon three vexes to join the fight, and flee at the player’s sprinting speed when cornered.

  • Whenever possible, kill evokers upon sight as quickly as you can so that they won't have the chance to summon vexes or their fangs. This is especially important, since evokers cast their summoning spells upon being attacked inside most areas of a woodland mansion.
  • Shooting them with a ranged weapon is the safest way to defeat an evoker, but keep your distance if the evoker senses that you're close, it has a chance to summon evoker fangs or vexes, which can be a nasty trouble for you. Try to get a Power 1-5 bow or you can enchant your bow with flame so the evoker can die in 1 hit, but if you see the evoker preparing to summon fangs or vexes, kill it immediately.
  • Melee combat is also possible; corner the evoker into a small space while dodging any fangs that come your way, before striking repeatedly until it dies.
  • Upon death, evokers drop their Totem of Undying as well as 0-1 emeralds, which can be good for later survival and trading.
  • Evokers can walk as fast as the player's sprinting speed, so be sure to keep some food in your hotbar when you see one or else it'll flee and you will lose track of it.
  • Bring a blue sheep and a few blue dyes so the evoker can focus on turning the blue sheep red, giving you time to finish the evoker. The evoker also have a cooldown before it can summon anything else.

Vex[]

Summoned by evokers, Vexes can fly through walls and floors to attack their target by surprise. Despite their low health pool, they deal up to 13♥ × 6.5 damage on Hard difficulty, meaning that they’re not to be trifled with.

  • Time your hits well against vexes, and retreat if necessary to avoid getting struck.
  • Against a swarm of vexes, just flee from the scene and ignore them; they drop nothing when killed anyway and will despawn within 2 minutes.

General Strategy[]

Most people do this strategy when raiding the woodland mansion. Bring all your things with you and don't forget your ender chest containing your shulker boxes. When you enter the mansion, start illuminating it. Kill any hostile mobs you see. When you are looting a room, kill all hostile mobs and light the room up. Take all the furniture and loot because they will be useful later. This will also remind you that you have raided this room. You can also mark the entrance if you don't want the furniture. Punch holes in the walls to check for secret rooms. If you find loot and your inventory gets full, open your ender chest and take out a shulker box to store your loot. Quickly put the shulker box in the ender chest so you don't risk losing it. Repeat for the other rooms. On the second floor and third floor, there are evokers, which summon vexes. Kill them first by sniping or cornering them. If your sword has Knockback, it is unrecommended to attack an evoker with it because you will knock it away and it can sprint as fast as the player. Once the evoker is dead, kill the vindicators and take the loot and furniture. Again, punch holes in the walls to check for secret rooms. Some rooms are more dangerous than others and the loot and furniture are different, such as the conference rooms, where five vindicators and one evoker generates within. If you take all the loot and furniture, you will gain a lot of useful resources. Aside from the woodland mansion chest loot, you will get a lot of mob drops, carpets, stairs and slabs from furniture, bookshelves, flowerpots, flowers, banners, cauldrons, chests, diamond and lapis blocks, cobblestone, redstone, iron doors, dirt, wheat, seeds, melons, pumpkins, and dark oak saplings. Even those things aren't much value, they are worth taking because they can save you some resources. There are also many alternative strategies to loot a woodland mansion, it is based on personal preference.

Alternative strategies for defeat[]

Melee Warfare[]

Required Items:

  • Fairly good fighting skills

Procedure: Using a sword or bow, attack the illagers head on. Take down the mansion room by room, and punch holes in the walls to look for secret rooms.

Water Defense[]

Required Items:

Procedure: When a vindicator spots you, apply the water bucket right underneath you to make a water pool. Stand in the water and hit the vindicators with your sword, as they will have a very hard time getting to you, since they cannot go to you while the water is flowing towards them.

Arrows from Above[]

Required Items:

Procedure: Climb to the top of the mansion where you’ll set up camp. From there, destroy the roof and whip out your ranged weapon of choice to shoot any illagers from above, room-by-room. After clearing a loot room containing illagers, use your water bucket to head downwards, extract the loot and head to the roof again for more shooting. This method is great in the sense that all secret rooms are guaranteed to be uncovered.

Infiltration[]

Required Items

Procedure:

A vindicator trapped with dirt blocks by the player under the effects of invisibility.

Enter the mansion invisible. Trap illagers you see in blocks, making sure that you don’t come too close as they might notice you.

Raid Squad[]

Required Items

  • Other players with regular supplies

Procedure: There are many different ways to raid a mansion in a group. It’s easiest to go full-on “Melee Warfare” with a team, though more organized players might assign roles for each teammate (e.g. melee fighter, sniper, potion lobber, etc.) before heading in.

Wolf Army[]

Required Items

  • A pack of tamed wolves (the more the better)
  • Extra meat to heal the wolves, preferably a stack of cooked meat of any type.

Procedure: Use regular stategies to go about raiding the mansion. Your wolves will serve as your guardians and increase your survivability. Make sure you heal them after defeating an illager or some illagers in a room.

Here’s Johnny![]

Required Items

Procedure: Name vindicators "Johnny" such that they attack other hostile mobs in the mansion, which will make your raid much more pleasant. Invisibility potions reduce the likelihood of the vindicators noticing you as you name them.

Mass destruction[]

Equipment

Procedure: It’s simple as blowing up parts of the mansion to destroy illagers, or burning everything away to reveal hidden chests. Just stay away from fires and explosion, of course!

Dangerous rooms[]

  • Spider room - There is a spider spawner in the center of the room. Kill all spiders in the room and light up the spawner. Take all the cobwebs with shears because they are strictly limited in a minecraft world.
  • Obsidian room - There is a diamond block in the middle of a obsidian pile. Mine the obsidian with a diamond or better pickaxe and take the diamond block.
  • Jails - There are many vindicators in the jails. Kill all of them and break the iron doors. Take the cauldron and brown carpets because cauldrons are expensive to make.
  • Bedrooms - There are many vindicators, except in the master bedroom. Kill all of them and take the wool and carpet from the beds. The loft on one of the bedrooms has a chest next to the bed.
  • Fake End Portal room - There is a trapped chest next to two tnt. Destroy the tnt and take the trapped chest and the ender pearls. Destroy the wool end portal because you cannot use it as a real one. The stone blocks are infested, so be careful. If you want to remove them, break one and kill all silverfish, or use silk touch to mine them.
  • Illager statue room - There is a large illager statue with a lapis lazuli block. Destroy the statue and collect the wool and the lapis block.
  • Dining rooms - The small and medium don't have illagers. Take all the furniture. The large dining room has an evoker and 2 vindicators. Kill the evoker by sniping it to avoid vexes. Kill the vindicators using a sword or by shooting them.
  • Conference room - This is the most dangerous room, containing 5 vindicators and an evoker. Kill the evoker as fast as possible before killing the vindicators. Take the furniture when you are done.
  • Map room - This room has 2 vindicators and an evoker. Fight them using the methods described in the conference room. Take the illagers' map, table and bookshelves.
  • Arena room - This room has no illagers, but it is dangerous because you can be surprised by monsters from the top loft. Start by destroying the center arena and killing the mobs. Then, pillar up a few blocks to snipe at the monsters in the loft. Be careful of skeletons and have your shield ready. Build a bridge to the loft or climb the ladder. There is a loot chest.
  • Lava room - This room has lava surrounding a diamond block and the lava is in a glass cage surround partially by obsidian. Loot this room last because there is high risk of fire. Start by mining the top obsidian. Break one piece of glass on the top of the cage and quickly pour water to cover the lava. Extinguish any fires you set. Break all the glass and convert the first layer of lava to obsidian. Lower the water source and mine the obsidian. The next layer would have turned to obsidian. Repeat for the other layers. Take the diamond block when you are done removing the lava and extinguish all fires.

Loot[]

Many mansion rooms contain chests with “dungeon loot” in them.

  • "Checkerboard room" - the loot chest is located above the entrance.
  • "X room" - there’s a loot chest at the corner.
  • "Gray banner room" - the loot chest is found behind the cobblestone construction.
  • "Wood arch hallway" - the loot chest is located the end of the room.
  • "Winding stairway room" - the loot chest is located at the end of the winding passageway.
  • “Bedroom with loft” - the loot chest is found at the loft.
  • “Lone chest room” - the loot chest sits in plain sight at the center.
  • "Attic room" - there are two loot chests positioned at each end of the upper attic of this room.
  • "Arena room" - the loot chest resides on the loft.
  • "Fake End portal room" - the trapped chest, which contains 2 Ender pearls, sits on the woolen “End portal”, and is flanked by two TNT on each side.
  • “Allium room” - the chest at the entrance is full of alliums.
  • "Sapling farm" - the chest at the entrance holds 28 dark oak saplings.
  • "Tree-chopping room" - the loot chest at the foot of the tree contains an iron axe enchanted with Efficiency I.
  • “Storage rooms”, “mushroom farm” - the chests are empty.

Aside from loot chests, there are several valuable blocks that the player can scavenge from the mansion's rooms: the secret “obsidian room" and "lava room" both contain a diamond block in the center of the structures, and the "illager statue room" contains a hidden lapis lazuli block in the illager’s head, to name a few.

For further information, please see the page woodland mansion/loot.

Post-Exploration[]

After the mansion is looted, there are a number of things you can do with it. You can turn it into a home, burn it down, systematically dismantle it to get extra resources, or just leave it as it is.

Turn it into a home[]

The woodland mansion is a nice looking structure. Turn the mansion into your base. Light it up and clear out all hostile mobs. Fix all creeper holes and fire damage. You can use the original rooms, or tear down the inner walls and build them how you want. You can take all the furniture to add your own. Make sure to change the beds in the bedrooms so you can sleep in them. Add a kitchen, bathroom, better bedrooms, anything you want. You can even redesign the whole mansion, but it will take a long time to do so. Putting farms on top of the mansion's roof can be effective for food. Don't worry about Illagers as long as you've explored all the rooms and killed all of them.

A Woodland Mansion turned into a base with farms on the rooftop. A few villagers and an iron golem is visible from here.

Expanding it[]

Since the mansion is in a dark forest, you can make a giant basement and carve windows if it's on a cobblestone foundation that is taller than one level. The dark oak wood from the trees around it blends nicely with the rest of the mansion. You can also chop down trees and use the logs to expand the mansion to that area too.

Turning it into a village[]

Making houses with the dark oak wood from the nearby trees around the mansion can turn the area into a nice looking village. Be sure to make a villager breeder consisting of at least 2 villagers (you can bring villagers from another village or cure any zombie villagers you find) to populate the mansion. Make job sites for the villagers and put beds in the upper rooms of the mansion. After you get lots of villagers and claimed beds, iron golems can spawn and protect you and the villagers from hostile mobs such as zombies and skeletons.

Make a villager breeder or any type of mob farm inside[]

You can build some type of farm(s) inside. You can make a spider farm with the spider spawner, bring in villagers for villager trading halls, or make the building a giant crop farm, which works best on the roof, as crops uproot if not connected with sunlight. An animal farm works too, but you need some food to breed them.

Build a community building[]

Use the woodland mansion for a community building. Redo the inner walls and move it to the location you want using mods. Some ideas are making a hotel, town hall, or factory.