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How to make an automatic snow farm in Minecraft

A snow golem with their pumpkin sheared off (Image via Minecraft)
A snow golem with their pumpkin sheared off (Image via Minecraft)
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Jacob Burkett

Snow is an interesting Minecraft phenomenon. It only occurs naturally in Minecraft’s colder biomes, such as ice spikes, taiga, and old-growth taiga. It has also had many changes over the years. Various snow parts have been in the game, ranging from Java’s alpha to the game's full release.

While many attributes of snow have changed over the years, there has been one relative constant: how to farm for it. Since the addition of the snow golem in the game’s full release, players have been able to use the snow they generate for a permanent supply of good winter powder.


Uses of Minecraft snow and how to farm it

Uses

Snowballs

A player throwing a snowball at a sheep (Image via Minecraft)
A player throwing a snowball at a sheep (Image via Minecraft)

The easiest and most well-known use for snow is as a thrown projectile. These snowballs deal no damage to any mob in the game, but there is one edge use case for them as a weapon: blazes. Against blazes, they deal 1.5 hearts of damage.

While the damage seems low, and it is, this is effectively free damage, as it is a way to kill blazes without degrading the durability of a player’s weapons.

For all the other mobs, the snowballs knock them back as if they had been hit but deal no damage. It is interesting to note. However, that zombified piglins will become hostile as if they had been hurt.


Snow blocks

A player crafting snow blocks with snowballs (Image via Minecraft)
A player crafting snow blocks with snowballs (Image via Minecraft)

Players can get snow blocks by crafting them with snowballs or mining them with a silk-touch tool. As odd as they may seem, snow blocks do not melt under any lighting or heat conditions, making them useful building blocks should the player carry around the pieces needed to craft a snow farm wherever they may need one.


Snow Golems

A pair of snow golems (Image via Minecraft)
A pair of snow golems (Image via Minecraft)

Two snow blocks can be combined with a carved pumpkin or jack-o'-lantern to create a snow golem. These beings are neutral mobs that will wander around, creating a trail of snow behind them, and throwing snowballs at hostile mobs. They are one of the keys to farming snow effectively in-game.


Craftable layer snow

A player crafting layers of snow (Image via Minecraft)
A player crafting layers of snow (Image via Minecraft)

Snow layers can be picked up by breaking them with a silk touch tool. However, outside of this, any attempts to break the snow will instead result in one snowball dropper per layer of snow being destroyed. There is a utility to these layers in that layers of snow from two to seven deep will stop various hostile mobs from being able to spawn.


Piston based snowball farm

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This farm type is exclusive to the Bedrock version of the game, as only that game features the ability for pistons to break snow layers, causing them to drop snowballs. This means it is possible to create a pretty simple designed farm that breaks snow layers created by golems as they are made with a piston, dropping snowballs into a waiting hopper connected to a chest.

Players will need to collect enough snowballs to craft the blocks necessary for whatever they need them. While having to craft the snow blocks by hand is annoying, unfortunately, it is the only way to do it for both designs of the snow farm.


Manual snowball farm

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These snow farms are the kind much more widely known in the community. They feature the same general concept: using a snow golem to create snow layers that are broken to collect snowballs. Where they differ is in the execution.

Instead of being able to use pistons for these farms, players will need to, as the name implies, manually break the snow layers, preferably with a shovel.

These farms can be quite simple in design, needing nothing more than an area for the snow golem to stand and a cover to keep the golem safe from mobs and the rain.

The minimal snow farm design requires only two snow blocks, a carved pumpkin, a block for the golem to stand on, and nine other blocks to encase the golem.

First, place down the block where the golem will stand. Then place the two snow blocks on top of this block. Then place two blocks on each side of the snow blocks. After this, place the pumpkin on the snow, spawning the golem. Then place a block over the golem to stop rain from killing it.

Players only need to mine the snow with a tool to receive snowballs. Since the golem is stuck on one block, it will continually regrow the snow layer as the player destroys it.


Edited by Srijan Sen
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