The Pillowrock Caves - A Late-Game Cave Biome Inspired by Real World Geology.
I want to give the underground world different environments separated by depth and biome. The deeper you go, the more brutal the environment. With this idea in mind, I wanted to make a rarely occurring bottom section of the underground that would be a place that a player with even iron armor wouldn't feel completely safe in. Old players will enjoy some new end-game content while new players will have a new place to look forward to underground.
What I came up with was the Pillowrock Caves. This new biome was inspired by the science of Oceanic Tectonic crust and takes a lot of characteristics from the real-life geology. As a start, this new challenge awaits players under the oceans of the Minecraft world where the biome replaces 80% of the original underground. This biome also rarely shows up above ground but in a completely different form.
Blocks and Elements
- Pillowrock is the stone that makes up this new underground biome. It is a breakable variant of bedrock that requires a minimum iron pickaxe to collect. For survivalists, Pillowrock is a harder more endgame form of cobblestone with high blast resistance. It can make anything cobblestone can. Stairs and slabs, cobbled or bricked. Gone are the days of being restricted to obsidian for creating the sturdiest of builds!
- Regolith is the Pillowrock's overall more dangerous equivalent of gravel and cobblestone. Unlike gravel, it doesn't fall immediately: It's unstable. Every time a block is broken near regolith, it has a 5% chance of collapsing and updating surrounding regolith to do the same. In addition, regolith is tough and requires a pickaxe to mine. You will often find regolith making up the ceiling in caves. Using a Silk Touch pickaxe to mine will not disturb regolith.
- Fault Ravines are long, very thin ravines filled with lava. Because of their length, they can often break up the biome into sections with lava borders. They always start from Y:11 and stretch upwards to varying heights. Coming across a fault ravine can be a problem as it's basically a wall of lava and diverting your course isn't so easy. How you find your way through this natural barrier is one of the greatest challenges of this biome.
Ores and Minerals
- Ore Geodes are large clusters of lapis, gold, emerald, or redstone ore that are encapsulated in an obsidian shell. Inside there can be up to 20 blocks of ore per geode. Little jackpots here and there!
Diamond will spawn at the same levels and the same rarity in the Pillowrock Caves. However, these diamond ores require a minimum diamond pickaxe to mine and may drop two diamond items when broken.
- Magnetite is a variant of iron that spawns in Pillowrock Caves at the same levels and rarity as normal iron. This ore, however also requires a diamond pickaxe to mine but armor and pistons crafted with magnetite offer unique advantages.
Crafting a piston with a magnetite ingot makes a magnetic piston. This variant of piston is armless but can push up to 8 blocks outwards depending on the strength of the redstone signal.
Magnetite armor has the same stats as iron, but wearing at least one piece of magnetite armor will causes items to be drawn to you similar to EXP orbs.
Mobs and Entities
- Echodiles are hostile amphibious monsters that will spawn throughout the biome, whether in dry or flooded caves. These Axolotl/Crocodile hybrids will always spawn very small (around the size of fish.) But every time they hit you, they will get slightly larger and deal more damage. Also because of their amphibious nature, they will chase you on the ground and in water at equal speeds.
Model by MCvinnyq#7463 on Discord.
- Emburst Mushrooms are sporing mushrooms that can grow just about anywhere in the Pillowrocks. If you touch walk over or hit an Embust, it will puff out toxic spores that will inflict you with various debuffs, including a new Miner's Blindness debuff effect.
Miners Blindness is a new status effect that causes ores to visually disappear, rendering as normal stone. This makes mining essentially impossible because.. well you can't see the ores, to begin with.
The Sheild Island
The Sheild Island is a new biome that is composed of Pillowrock from the bottom of the world right up to the surface. This biome is modeled after Hawaii, a geologically young island formed from the constant eruptions of basaltic lava, creating new landmass.
This biome spawns as a technical biome in Oceans, essentially creating a Volcano Island. While the underground of the biome is made entirely of pillowrock, the surface of the biome is similar to an Extreme hill. There are regions of dirt and stone alike.
- Grassy Areas are green and are populated by small jungle trees and oak trees. Life is quite taken to the oasis of this volcanic landscape.
- Rocky areas show the basic anatomy of the pillowrock biome. A blanket of regolith can hide deep lava pits. You might be safer just sneaking on the patches of magma that spawn everywhere.
- Fault Ravines are allowed to reach the surface in this biome, thus creating hazardous lava rivers.
That's the Pillowrock Caves suggestion then! A fair bit of content to create a biome that even then has room for more expansion. This is a biome you would find in caves in your first few days in a world and think "eventually" as the biome is not forgiving to early and midgame players. If you manage to avoid all of the significant hazards, you will still realize your venture was pointless since all of the ores require a minimum diamond pickaxe to obtain.
Players who are familiar with the game and have become something shy of a God in their survival worlds will enjoy new treasures in this new biome. While the new player will notice black caves dotting the ocean floor, excited to see what awaits them in this new world they have yet to prepare for. And that's the kind of feelings new updates should incite in players. Thanks for reading. Hope you like it!
As a bonus, here is a link to the Original Reddit Post.
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