From Minecraft Wiki
First Appearance Classic 0.28 (Java)

0.1.0 (Bedrock)

Type of Block Solid Block
Stackable Yes 64

Obsidian is the fourth-strongest block in Minecraft after bedrock, barriers and command Blocks and Obsidian is the strongest block that can be mined by players, as bedrock and barriers can be placed but can't be mined once it's placed.


Obsidian can only be found naturally near lava beds that are below sea level. It is created when flowing water touches a lava source block, causing the lava block to turn into an obsidian block. For this reason, it is usually found very deep underground, around layer 10. However, it can still be found anywhere where water and lava meet. It also can be found in the end's obsidian pillars and a woodland mansion, encasing a diamond block.

To collect obsidian, a diamond pickaxe or better must be used. It takes 250 seconds to break an obsidian block by hand, and 21.85-125 seconds to break it with a pickaxe weaker than diamond or netherite, although neither will yield any obsidian.

Obsidian is a renewable resource, as the spawning platform and Ender Crystal pillars in the End (which are made of obsidian) are regenerated when a player re-enters the dimension or re-spawns the Ender Dragon. Obsidian is also spawned when Nether Portals are created, as portal frames are also made of obsidian. The four extra corner blocks of a nether portal can be mined and used to create other nether portals, without deactivating the portal.

Players can create obsidian themselves by pouring water from a bucket over a pool of stationary lava. If the lava is flowing, it will create cobblestone, instead of obsidian.

When an Ender Chest is mined without a pickaxe that's not enchanted with Silk Touch, 8 obsidian will be dropped instead.


Obsidian is required to make the frame of a Nether Portal. Before update 1.7, a portal could be built in either a 4x1x5 or a 2x1x3 frame of obsidian without any blocks in the middle of the portal. Currently, the maximum size a portal can be is a 23x23x23 frame, with the middle left open. The corner blocks do not have to be included in the portal. After the portal is complete, lighting one of the bottom obsidian blocks on fire with a fire charge or a flint and steel (lava will not work unless it is used to light a nearby block on fire) will activate the portal, and it will grant access to the Nether.

Obsidian is very resistant to explosions (except a Wither's skeleton skull attack). It is therefore useful for players interested in building near-indestructible rooms, which can either be used for protection against explosions outside, or as a trap for other players caught in an explosion within the room. Obsidian is therefore a common building material for defensive structures on multiplayer servers.


Obsidian requires a diamond pickaxe or better to harvest, otherwise, it will drop nothing.

Java Edition

Tool File:DiamondPickaxe.png File:NetheritePickaxe.png
Hardness 50
Breaking time[note 1]
  1. Times are for unenchanted tools in seconds.

Bedrock Edition

Tool File:DiamondPickaxe.png
Hardness 35
Breaking time[note 1]
  1. Times are for unenchanted tools in seconds.


Enchantment Table Ender Chest
None Book None Obsidian Obsidian Obsidian
Diamond Obsidian Diamond Obsidian Eye of Ender Obsidian
Obsidian Obsidian Obsidian Obsidian Obsidian Obsidian
Glass Glass Glass
Glass Nether Star Glass
Obsidian Obsidian Obsidian


  • While obsidian is a strong block in Minecraft, obsidian in the real world is a fragile volcanic glass which actually was made by water and lava. However, it's capable of reaching a sharpness equal to (if not, higher) diamond. It was for this reason that obsidian was a popular material used for arrowheads throughout the earth's history (Most notably Native Americans).
  • Changing the in-game language to "Pirate" will rename obsidian to "Rock o' Tears", possibly a reference to Crying Obsidian.
  • Village blacksmiths and Nether Fortress Chests can rarely contain obsidian, although, between the two, it is three times as likely to be offered by a blacksmith.
  • In Minecraft: Pocket Edition, Glowing Obsidian (a red-glowing variant), could be created when activating a Nether Reactor Core. However, it cannot be mined or obtained.
  • Obsidian is one of only a few blocks that cannot be destroyed by an ender dragon (the others being end stone, air, bedrock, Command Blocks, Barrier Blocks, and jigsaw blocks.) Instead, the dragon will phase through it, and knockback any player hiding behind one of the obsidian pillars, causing damage to the player.
  • Despite being one of the most durable blocks, the Wither can still break it with its attacks.
  • The Wither being able to break obsidian is an exception, otherwise, its blue skull has the same strength as a black skull.
  • There is a myth that enough TNT can break obsidian. Even though obsidian has a blast resistance of 6,000, TNT (minimum required blast resistance is 77.67), cannot destroy Obsidian, no matter how many are used. This myth may come from the fact that if enough TNT is used, the game will lag, and in the lag spikes, the game will glitch causing normally unbreakable blocks to be broken.
  • Obsidian is one of the few blocks that can naturally generate in all 3 dimensions.


Click for full Obsidian gallery.