You can use a Name Tag to give a mob a name, but it also prevents them from despawning. However, they are rare, so you will have to do a lot of exploring to find a Name Tag in Minecraft.
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Can You Make a Name Tag in Minecraft?
No, you cannot make a Name Tag in Minecraft. This is one of those items that you can only find, like a Saddle. The only naturally-generated structures where you can find a Name Tag are Dungeons, Mineshafts, and Woodland Mansions. However, in the Bedrock Edition of the game, you can also potentially find a Name Tag in Buried Treasure.
Percentage Chances of Finding a Name Tag in Chests
- Dungeon Chest – 28.3% to find 1 Name Tag
- Mineshaft Chest – 42.3% to find 1 Name Tag
- Woodland Mansion Chest – 27.9% to find 1 Name Tag (Java Edition) or 28.3% to find 1 Name Tag (Bedrock Edition)
- Buried Treasure – 34.3% chance to find 1 Name Tag (Bedrock Edition)
How to Get a Name Tag From Fishing and Trading With Villagers
While you’re fishing, there is a 0.8% chance of reeling in a Name Tag instead of a fish. This is due to the treasure and junk mechanic attached to fishing, which lets you use your Fishing Rod to rarely catch unexpected items.
If you have a lot of Emeralds, you can trade with Master-level Librarian Villagers to get a Name Tag. These Villagers will sell you 1 Name Tag for 20 Emeralds.
How to Use a Name Tag
Before you can name anything with a Name Tag, you’ll first have to edit it by using an Anvil. Place the Name Tag on the left slot of an Anvil and begin typing in the brownish-yellow text field that is just below where it says “Repair & Name” on the Anvil menu screen. This process will cost you 1 level of Experience, however, that’s an amount that will be easy to come by.
After editing the text of your Name Tag, the item itself will get renamed to the text you input on the Anvil. Now, go up to the mob that you want to name with the new Name Tag in your hand and use it on them. This process will consume the Name Tag, but will also permanently name whatever mob you used it on. When you name a mob this way, you cannot remove that name by normal in-game means–you would have to use cheats.
What Naming a Mob Does
Normally, most mobs will spawn and despawn naturally as the player travels through different overworld chunks and through portals. Tamed mobs, such as Cats, Wolves, Horses, and more, are an exception to the normal despawning mechanics of Minecraft. Though, not all mobs can be tamed, and, as such, there isn’t usually a way to prevent your favorite non-tameable mobs from disappearing.
Thankfully, using a Name Tag on such untameable mobs is a guaranteed way around the despawning mechanic. When named, a mob will no longer count towards the wild mob limit. This limit is the biggest factor that makes things despawn, as it results in untamed and unnamed mobs disappearing to make room for new creatures to spawn.
Mobs That You Cannot Permanently Name With a Name Tag
You will have some issues with trying to name a few specific mobs. In addition to those that simply cannot be named at all, some have traits that break the effect of a Name Tag.
- A named Silverfish that goes into a block will always be replaced by a new Silverfish when that block is broken, making it impossible to permanently name a Silverfish
- Wandering Traders will always despawn after being named
- You cannot name the Ender Dragon, as it is a unique entity