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For the status effect, see Wither (Status Effect).

The Wither is a floating three-headed, demonic boss mob with a skeletal appearance. Its parts (soul sand and wither skulls) originate from the Nether and is the second boss mob introduced and added to the game after the Ender Dragon in 1.4.2 the Pretty Scary Update. It can only be encountered and battled by being summoned by a player. It's also the only way to obtain the Nether star, which is used for crafting the beacon. The Ender Dragon had the most health out of any mob in the game until the Wither was implemented.


The Wither looks like a 'demon' creature, and it is a black, skeletal beast with 3 Wither skulls as heads along with a body that consists of a skeletal spike and three prehensile ribcages. It also has white eyes and white mouths. Also, the sky will turn darker when you are within a certain range. The wither will spin white while loading health, at this mode it is invulnerable, but will not move or attack, only slowly fall down. When it is at full health it will explode, and send a noise heard all across the world.

If the Wither's health goes below 151 ( x 75.5) [JE] or 301 ( x 150.5) [BE], The wither will turn blue and will become invulnerable to arrows.


The Wither is an extremely aggressive demon that is hostile to a player and all mobs except other Withers and "undead" mobs. Upon noticing non-undead mobs, the Wither will attack them with a projectile called the “Wither skull”. If a wither shoots a skull at a non-undead mob, but the skull hits an undead mob, the undead mob will become hostile to the Wither, but cannot deal damage. Each of the 3 heads fires heads, allowing a Wither to attack up to three different entities at the same time. If no mobs are around, the Wither will teleport behind the player.

If shot by another Wither, it will shoot each other and rise indefinitely. If it is spawned in the End, it will prefer to attack any nearby Endermen, but it will also attempt to pursue and attack the Ender Dragon if there are no other nearby targets, but only extremely rarely that it will actually shoot the Ender Dragon. It will also attack the Ender Dragon in the Overworld and the Nether.

In the 1.14 - Village and Pillage update, if the Wither successfully kills a mob, there is a chance a Wither rose may spawn.


The Wither can move insanely fast. Upon noticing a mob, the Wither will attack them with a projectile called the “Wither Skull”

File:Wither Skull.png
Normal Wither Attack

. Wither Skulls inflict a status effect called "Wither II" on normal and hard difficulties for about 10 and 40 seconds, respectively. This effect turns their health bar black, which makes it difficult to tell at a glance how many hearts are still full. The Wither can destroy any block except bedrock, portal blocks (not obsidian), and End portal frames. It can also destroy obsidian, which is well known for its immunity to TNT and long mining time.

Blue Wither Attack

Each head is fired individually, allowing a Wither to attack up to three different entities at the same time or fire very quickly on a single mob. The middle-head Wither shoots a blue Wither skull, which will give a player the Wither effect while its other heads shoot their skulls. Withers need at least a 5 block high airspace to fit. Regardless, they can't be trapped and suffocated in smaller rooms. When attacked, the Wither will break any block that comes into contact with it except bedrock, portal blocks, air, End portal frames, barrier blocks, jigsaw blocks, structure blocks, structure voids, and command blocks.

The Wither can destroy blocks similar to the Ender Dragon. When near any block that can be destroyed by a player, it will produce an audible smashing sound. For example, this could happen by having the Wither on one side of a wall and a player on the other, so the Wither would have to make a path through the wall to attack. The Wither will then instantly destroy a 3x3 hole in the wall to pass through it.

The Wither's boss health bar is only shown when a player is near a Wither, and it can also be seen through walls when a player is near the Wither's direction. When it reaches half health, the Wither will gain the "Wither Armor" effect, which makes it immune to projectiles, such as arrows, and potions, but not melee attacks. This will cause it to have a visual effect surrounding it, similar to that of a charged creeper. While in this state, the Wither cannot fly. The Wither, when calm, cannot fly, and instead, it simply hovers above the ground, but it cannot "jump" up one block. When angered by a player, the Wither will fly at the same height as a player. Like other undead mobs, such as zombies, skeletons, etc., the Wither is harmed by potions of healing and healed by potions of harming. It also regenerates health over time (about a per second). The Wither will explode when it is done powering up when it is summoned, so a player should steer clear of it when it's spawned.

Summoning the Wither

To create the Wither, a player must arrange four soul sand blocks in a capital "T" shape (place a block on the ground, place one on top of it, then put a block on the left and right of the top block), and place three wither skeleton skulls on the top blocks. The Wither will appear instantly, staying still, while beginning charging its health and cannot be damaged in this time. Once fully charged, a large explosion happens in around it, and it begins attacking anything in sight aside from other undead monsters (Zombies, skeletons, etc.).

The Wither can destroy any block except bedrock and command blocks, and therefore cannot be contained. Once a player has worn it down to half health, it forms "Wither Armor" that protects it from arrows. A player must then finish it off at close range with a melee weapon. When killed, it drops the Nether star, an ingredient to the beacon, a powerful block that gives a player enhanced powers when built in a pyramid or placed in the center of a 3x3 'grid' made from either iron, diamond, gold, emerald, or netherite blocks.

Note: The Wither is not created in a crafting table. Instead, the components of the wither must be placed/stacked in a particular shape (similar to an Iron Golem), following the shape outlined in the table below.

*The last block placed MUST be a Wither Skeleton head, or this will not work.

The shape of the Wither to summon it.
Wither Skeleton Head Wither Skeleton Head Wither Skeleton Head
Soul Sand Soul Sand Soul Sand
None Soul Sand None


  • The Wither will start destroying the terrain as soon as it spawns, so a player should spawn it in a barren place such as a desert.
  • When killing the Wither, a player should shoot at it with a bow & arrows at long range as the player will stay out of the Wither's sight.
  • One method for killing the Wither with a minimum of terrain damage is to fight it deep underground. It's best to do this in a chamber the player dug, as the Wither will have less of an area to go through.
  • Iron Golems will distract the Wither and attack it if the Wither is trapped in a confined space underground. The Wither can be defeated very easily if Iron Golems can attack it.
  • Blast Protection is advised, as the Wither's attacks are based on explosives. Placing such enchantments on Netherite armor will significantly increase survivability.


  • During two April Fool's updates, there was a passive pink Wither.
  • If a Wither is killed with Strength 100, its health bar will glitch and say its at half health, while the Wither does its death animation.
  • The name 'Wither' means dead, and it refers to the materials needed to create one which comes from Minecraft's "Hell" (the nether), where dead souls supposedly go.
  • The Wither had a glitch where it would spin around in circles while shooting Wither skulls.
  • There was a glitch where the Wither couldn't fly in Superflat worlds.
  • Withers cannot be trapped inside any material excluding bedrock (in creative mode).
  • There is a 2×2 painting that is named "Wither".
  • It is possible to change the Wither's size using commands which is similar to that of the slime and the magma cube. It can become up to 256 blocks tall, but it won't attack.
  • There was a fixed glitch where the Wither could destroy the End portal even though the End portal is indestructible.
  • If a player attempts to spawn the Wither in peaceful mode, the blocks will stay there and not turn into the actual Wither. If the difficulty is switched to peaceful after the Wither has spawned, it will despawn but blocks dropped and the evidence of its destruction will remain.
  • In the Minecraft 1.4 Update, the Wither can ride a minecart.
  • A player can spawn the Wither horizontally, but it will always spawn vertically.
  • The Wither can see a player even if they have an invisibility potion effect.
  • The Wither appears on all the faces of the red chiseled sandstone.
  • If a player is playing on Easy difficulty, then the Wither will not shoot the blue Wither skulls which give the Wither effect to a player.
  • If the Wither is given a name tag, then the text that appears on the top of the screen will change to the name of the name tag given.
  • The Wither has the most health of any mob in Minecraft, with 300 HP.
  • In console or Bedrock Edition, the wither will spawn wither skeletons when on half health on normal or hard mode
  • In the Bedrock Edition, the wither has 600 HP.
  • In Bedrock Edition, at half health, The Wither will fire bursts of 3 skulls, dash at the player, and do a shockwave attack.
  • The Wither fires black skulls and blue skulls. The black skulls are faster, but the blue skulls destroy anything but bedrock, command blocks, barrier blocks, and end portal frames.
  • In the Nether Wastes and Soul Sand Valley, a reversed version of the Withers death sound sometimes erupts amongst the Biomes normal ambiece.
  • In the Java Edition of Minecraft, there is currently a bug with the central head of a Wither being passive to the player until it is attacked, while the other two heads will fire wither skulls as intended.


Click for full Wither gallery.

Mobs in Minecraft
Passive Mobs
File:BatFace.png Bat File:OcelotFace.png Cat File:ChickenFace.png Chicken File:CowFace.png Cow
File:CodBody.png Fish (various) Link=Fox Fox File:Glow Squid Face.png Glow Squid File:HorseHead.png Horse
File:MooshroomFace.png Mooshroom File:BrownMooshroomFace.png Brown Mooshroom File:OcelotFace.png Ocelot File:ParrotFace.pngParrot
File:PigFace.png Pig File:Big-rabbit-face.png Rabbit File:SheepFace.png Sheep File:Snowgolemhead.png Snow Golem
File:Squidface.png Squid File:StriderFace.png Strider File:TurtleFace.pngTurtle File:Villagerhead.png Villager
File:WanderingTraderFace.png Wandering Trader
Neutral Mobs
File:AxolotlFace.png Axolotl File:BeeFace.png Bee File:DolphinHead.png Dolphin File:EndermanFace.png Enderman
File:GoatFace.png Goat File:Vg face.png Iron Golem File:Big-llama-face.png Llama File:Panda FaceZ.png Panda
File:PiglinFace.png Piglin File:PolarBearFace.png Polar Bear File:SpiderFace.png Spider File:CaveSpiderFace.png Cave Spider
File:BetterWolfFace.png Wolf File:ZombifiedPiglinFace.png Zombified Piglin
Hostile Mobs
File:Blaze Face.png Blaze File:CreeperFace.png Creeper File:Drownedheaad.png Drowned File:Enderdragon Face.png Ender Dragon
File:EndermiteFace.png Endermite File:EvokerFace.png Evoker Link=Evoker Fang Evoker Fang File:GhastFace.png Ghast
Link=Guardian Guardian File:Big-elder-guardian-face.png Elder Guardian File:Hoglin face.pngHoglin File:HuskFace.png Husk
File:Magma Cube Face.png Magma Cube File:PhantomFace.png Phantom File:PiglinBruteFace.png Piglin Brute File:PillagerFace.png Pillager
File:RavagerFace.png Ravager File:Big-shulker-face.png Shulker File:SilverfishFace.png Silverfish File:SkeletonFace.png Skeleton
File:SlimeFace.png Slime File:Spider SkeletonFace.png Spider Jockey File:StrayFace.png Stray File:VexFace.png Vex
File:VindicatorFace.png Vindicator File:Warden Face.png Warden File:50px-WitchFace.png Witch File:Wither face.png Wither
File:WitherSkeletonHead.png Wither Skeleton File:Spider WitherSkeleton.png Wither Skeleton Jockey File:ZoglinFace.pngZoglin File:ZombieFace.png Zombie
File:ZombieVillagerFace.png Zombie Villager