Minecraft has tons of enchantments, but Piercing can make a player’s stock of arrows even more economical.

The Piercing enchantment can currently only be applied to crossbows in Vanilla Minecraft. Still, the enchantment benefits the weapon considerably, giving arrows the ability to pierce entities and strike others behind them. This effect applies not only to monsters but also to shields that attempt to block an arrow. The number of entities that a fired arrow can pass through depends on the weapon’s enchantment level (entities allowed to pierce are equal to enchantment level +1). Fired arrows can even be picked up after piercing multiple targets.


Minecraft: More info on the Piercing enchantment

While Piercing can only be placed on crossbows, it still allows for ammo conservation, which is a big help (Image via Mojang)
While Piercing can only be placed on crossbows, it still allows ammo conservation, which is a big help (Image via Mojang)

Announced at Minecon 2018 and introduced in Minecraft in the game’s “Village & Pillage” update 1.14, Piercing as Enchantment has spent a few years within the game’s growing collection. It is also featured in Minecraft: Bedrock Edition and was included in the same Village & Pillage update released in version 1.8.0 of the Bedrock platform.

There are three total advancements players can gain by enchanting and using a crossbow with Piercing, including:

  • Enchanting – Enchant an item on an enchantment table.
  • Two birds, one arrow – Kill two ghosts with a piercing arrow.
  • Arbalistic – Kill five unique monsters with a single crossbow strike.

The crossbows themselves are only available since the Village & Pillage update and can be enchanted with a host of other effects. However, Piercing and Multishot are specifically not compatible with the exterior console controls, in which the crossbow will function normally and fire arrows that both pierce and fire in a spread of three projectiles at a time. Otherwise, the two are mutually exclusive in Vanilla Minecraft and cannot be added to the same crossbow.

In all, crossbows are capable of possessing three unique enchantments in total. Quick Charge, Multishot, and Piercing are unique enchantments specifically for crossbows and do not apply to other weapons are tools without the aid of mods or exterior modifications. Finally, while crossbows can be loaded with fireworks rockets, Piercing does not affect these projectiles when fired and they will not work the same in flight as arrows.


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