Mining can be lengthy and time-consuming if not done correctly. This guide will show you how to efficiently mine and make your gaming life more manageable.
Ever since Minecraft was first released, it has become a big part of the gaming community—racking up tons of fans worldwide. Beloved by newbies and veterans alike, Mojang has continued improving the game and introducing new content each year. For sure, not a single day goes by where players don’t start a new world and experience the world of Minecraft with their friends.
One of these experiences is mining. Mining is one of the most important aspects of the game, and it should not be overlooked. A lot of players already know how to mine, but most don’t know how to do it effectively. After all, the major Minecraft rule goes: never dig straight down. This guide will tackle tips and tricks that can help you efficiently mine in order to quickly find resources such as gold, diamonds, and more.
Prepare the Necessary Equipment for Mining
Before you set out on your mining journey, you need to prepare a few things first in order to successfully mine and prevent yourself from running out of materials—or worse, dying in the process. It is always helpful to bring some basic materials for crafting, such as wood, coal, a crafting table, and a furnace. Other important materials that should be in your inventory at all times are food, torches, weapons, tools, and armor.
A useful item to have is a bed if you plan on staying for more than a day underground. You should also bring at least one stack of sticks to craft these into tools if you need to. An optional item to have is a clock to quickly tell the time when it is daytime or night as you probably won’t know when you’re deep underground. A clock will also help you tell when it is safe to go up to the surface, so bringing one is extremely useful.
Although you may obtain iron while mining, it is better to bring a few iron ingots in your inventory as these can be crafted into iron pickaxes later. Always remember that using an iron pickaxe is better than using a stone pickaxe as these have stronger durability and efficiency in mining, plus iron pickaxes can mine diamonds.
If you plan on mining obsidian, you can either mine them directly using a diamond pickaxe or bring a stack of empty buckets to gather lava and turn them into obsidian back in the surface. It is also important to note the coordinates of your base before leaving as this can allow you to easily navigate your way back.
You should never leave without bringing a few stacks of food items in your inventory and some weapons. Food is essential in healing back health points and staving off hunger points. In hard mode, starvation can definitely kill you so keep this in mind and make sure to bring a ton of food items. Weapons are essential in protecting yourself from hostile mobs underground. Your primary weapon underground should always be a sword as this weapon has the fastest swing speed and second highest damage output—second only to an ax. Choosing other weapons such as crossbows and tridents isn’t optimal to use underground, so it’s better not to waste your inventory space by bringing these. For your offhand slot, you can use a shield to protect yourself from direct attacks from hostile mobs as it negates damage when timed correctly.
Lastly, you must bring your number one mining tool: the pickaxe. Your pickaxe should preferably be an iron pickaxe as it is the go-to pickaxe tier for effective mining. Bringing at least 2 to 3 iron pickaxes will help save you the trouble of having to craft one again when they break and this is especially important when you plan to continue mining for more than a few days.
Effective and Efficient Mining Methods
1. Staircase Mining Method
The staircase mining method, as its name suggests, allows you to create a staircase leading down to the bottom until you reach your desired layer. This method also allows you to quickly dig deep and lessen the risk of falling from great heights or into a pit of lava below. The staircase method starts out by digging from the surface, creating a stair-like pattern when digging, and eventually finding a suitable layer for mining. Since you should never dig straight down, using the staircase method is the best and most effective way of reaching your desired layer underground while also collecting common resources such as iron and coal along the way.
To start the staircase method, first, you need to find a good spot for digging. The overworld’s surface is usually covered with dirt blocks so make sure you bring your shovel with you when digging to make it easier. Then, once you’ve chosen a location, start digging with your shovel.
To do the staircase method, you need to dig at least one-block deep and two blocks in front of you, then move forward and repeat the process. Following through the 45°digging angle should eventually create a stair-like pattern behind you, and continue to dig or mine your path until you reach your preferred layer underground. Generally, you can still do this while collecting any resources and minerals you can find.
2. Branch Mining Method
The branch mining method allows new players to efficiently mine without needing to tackle an entire cavern by themselves. This also applies to veterans who plan to create a mining area near their base. Branch mining is effective because players can acquire more resources quickly using this method. However, this method also consumes a lot of pickaxes as you will generally mine a large area so be sure to bring a few extra tools for this method. Make sure that you are deep enough underground to start branch mining since this method is most effective when done in deeper layers.
To start branch mining, first, you need to dig a straight two-block tall main tunnel facing a certain direction. The length of the tunnel will depend on your preference. Then dig two more tunnels facing the left and right side of your main tunnel. Again, the length of each sub-tunnel will depend on what you prefer. And do the last step repeatedly and alternating every 2 blocks in order to thoroughly mine any resources that you pass by. This method creates “branch tunnels” from your main tunnel and it is the best way to look for diamonds if you are mining for one.
3. Quarry Mining Method
The quarry mining method is different from branch mining as this method is pretty straightforward. This method will also consume a lot of pickaxes—perhaps even more so than branch mining—so you need to come prepared. However, quarry mining has its perks as it allows you to thoroughly mine an area without missing any hidden resources. All you need to do is to dig around yourself until you create a room-like structure, then dig the floor of the room one block deep at a time until you reach the lowest layer. Then build a ladder to climb back up to the surface afterward. This method will likely reward you with more cobblestones than minerals so if you need to collect a lot of stones, then this method should work for you.