The Diamond Hammer: Minecraft creations from the host of the Hammer Of Retribution Ogg-Cast

 

PROJECT 27: THE BLAZE FARM OF FIRETOP MOUNTAIN

   
Nether coordinates: NX +69 : NY +45 : NZ -132
Date completed: 12 October 2015
Minecraft day completed: 3772

The Nether in this world has always had one huge bonus hiding in its closest Fortress, waiting to be exploited: two blaze spawners, right next to each other. Making a blaze farm had never been a priority until now - which was when the 1.9 snapshots had started rolling out, and worrying reports came in of their behaviour being changed so that they were always aggressive, which they weren't in 1.8. I thought I had to build the farm now and stockpile as many blaze rods as I could get hold of; by the time I'd finished, the blaze behaviour had been flagged as a bug and was reverted to type, the upshot being I now had a fully working blaze farm that would continue into 1.9 unhindered. It was perfect as a source of fuel - 12 smelts per blaze rod - and also to make a much more efficient XP farm than the single zombie spawner in the base, which has been effectively decommissioned now.

Ever since Nether Fortresses were first introduced back in Beta 1.9 (i.e. the pre-releases for 1.0), there have been attempts to farm them, none more successful than Etho's piston-pusher design which was still the undisputed champion as far as 1.7.

But come version 1.8, NimsTV had other ideas.

This version introduced slime blocks, which could be placed in a line to shove a whole row of mobs into place; Nims' design used these extensively, first arranging the blazes in a line, then compressing the line into the space of a single block, where they fall down, and when it's time to kill them, pull a lever to block them in place and stop them flying upwards, crush them until they're within an inch of their lives, fling a Harming potion at them and they die en masse with a whole load of rods scattered everywhere. Switch to a Looting III sword mid-fling and they'll drop even more rods.

I was initially sceptical of Nims' design; I thought if a blaze was made aggressive while inside the farm, it'd start throwing out fireballs everywhere which would smash the slime blocks, seeing as they have the blast resistance of a wet paper bag. But it seems, even when I screw up and don't quite kill all the blazes so the ones above get mad at me, their fireballs don't destroy anything, they just set the obsidian floor on fire and the slime blocks stay intact. Having ascertained this in a test world, I then tried to build two of these farms side by side to use both spawners in my world. The redstone wouldn't fit that way, but if I built them face to face - i.e. the "face" is where the glass is in Nims' video - the two could be merged (they overlap by four blocks), and the new widescreen "face" could be cut in the side of the new setup.

Typical production rate in 20 minutes (which is near the hostile mob cap):
83 blaze rods with no Looting effect; 328 blaze rods with Looting III.
Experience gained: up to level 31-32, starting from zero.