On the left is a cobblestone tower with a platform on top and on the right is the bottom of the tower, where you can see the feet of many mobs.

How to Make an XP Farm in Minecraft

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Reyadh is a writer of fantasy, horror, and science fiction who loves to play video games full of monsters and magic. When he's not scribing unique and unrelenting speculative fiction or slaying demons in virtual worlds, he is writing strategy guides to help others reach their gaming goals.

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The most efficient way to gain XP in Minecraft is to build something that gathers and weakens mobs. These are appropriately called “XP farms” and can take many forms. However, they all follow the same principles.

Table Of Contents

    How to Make the Easiest Efficient XP Farm

    A tower of cobblestone with a cross-shaped platform at the top.

    This kind of XP farm is a classic building design that’s been used a lot over the last 10 years of Minecraft. It involves making a tower with a platform on the top. On this upper platform, you will need to use water to push the mobs that spawn here into the central part of the tower. Here is where the mobs will fall and take damage. The last part is quite simple: stand at the bottom of the tower and hit the mobs after they take fall damage. This way, you can slay many monsters quickly for a ton of XP.

    Step 1 – How High to Build the Tower

    The height you need to build the tower is 22 blocks. If you build the tower portion of your XP farm too high, the mobs will die from fall damage. This is not what you want, as you only get XP from landing the killing blow yourself. However, if you don’t build the tower portion high enough, you’ll have to hit mobs multiple times. This would not be good either, as it means the XP farm is not as efficient as it could be.

    Furthermore, you need to keep in mind that 22 blocks is the distance from the ground to the upper platform. In other words, mobs who drop down the tower part of the XP farm should travel 22 blocks before hitting the ground. Falling this far will leave regular Zombies and Skeletons alive–but just barely. As such, you’ll be able to take them out in 1 hit with even a Wooden Sword. You need to make the central part of the tower 2 by 2 blocks wide for maximum efficiency.

    Step 2 – Make the Cross for the Upper Platform

    When the tower is 22 blocks high, you will then need to build 4 thin walkways leading away from the central shaft. Build these walkways 8 blocks out and make them 2 blocks wide. Next, build walls 2 blocks high to enclose these walkways. These hallways are where your mob prey will be pushed into the central shaft.

    By using some Water Buckets, place down 2 source blocks of water at the ends of each hallway. The water flowing towards the central shaft will be enough to reach the hole, but will not travel far enough to create a waterfall in the tower’s central part. Mobs that stand in this flowing water will be pushed into the hole and will fall 22 blocks.

    Step 3 – Make Surfaces for Mobs to Spawn

    Right now, the upper platform looks like a cross. However, you want to have more surface area for mobs to spawn, and there’s an easy way to add this. Between each ‘arm’ of the cross, build a floor. This should turn your cross into a square—just make sure not to cover the hallways filled with water.

    You should also place Trapdoors around the inner edges of this new floor (so that they cover the water hallways), as this will mess up the ledge detection of mobs. After placing the Trapdoors, open them so that they are pressed against the walls of the water hallways, allowing mobs to fall into them. The mobs won’t be able to detect these areas as ledges, and, as such, will fall into the water hallways more frequently.

    Afterward, build walls 2 blocks high and then create the ceiling to completely close off the area. Finally, got onto the roof and light it up with Torches so that mobs do not spawn on top. Be careful not to leave the inside lit up, as this will prevent mobs from spawning.

    Step 4 – Wait at the Bottom to Harvest XP From the Weakened Mobs

    At the bottom of the tower, you will need some way to hit the mobs that fall to the ground. Simply make a 1-block large opening around the tower at foot height. This will allow you to strike the mobs within the central shaft from any side of the tower but won’t let them hit or see you. The 2 by 2 space within the shaft will also pack the mobs together tightly enough for you to get double-kills and triple-kills frequently.

    Keep in mind that mobs only spawn around your location, so you will need to be somewhat close to this structure for monsters to actually appear within it. As such, you should build this XP farm around places you usually spend a lot of time. For example, building this XP farm around your actual farms so that mobs spawn while you harvest and plant crops could be an optimal setup.