How to find Diamonds in Minecraft 1.18+
Get your pickaxes ready as we answer the single most important question in Minecraft
Minecraft’s Caves and Caves Part 2 update finally released on November 30th, 2021. It brought with it a complete overhaul to the mechanics of the Minecraft overworld, including, most-crucially, a change to the level on which diamonds and other ores spawn in 1.18. This is a direct result of the change to the world height, now 382 blocks from bedrock to build height.
According to Slicedlime, one of the developers at Minecraft’s Mojang Studios, the emphasis is now being put much more firmly on strategy over luck when it comes to mining in Minecraft, so you need to think much more carefully about where and how you mine than you used to. Now, on which level to find diamonds is probably the most important question to any Minecraft player, so we’re going to look into that right here. I’ll try and leave out as much of the technical stuff as possible as there’s quite a lot to take in, but here’s the best level for mining diamonds – and the other crucial ores – in Minecraft 1.18.
Some technical terminology before we get started
What does “Triangular” formation mean?
Before we get into the locations of each ore, it’s best to just go over some of the terminology that you’re going to see below.
First off, and probably the most important one, is the triangular formation of ores. In 1.18, most ores generate this way, and its name is actually a bit confusing. Rather than being triangular, the generation is actually more of a diamond. When you read that an ore is generated in a “triangular formation” between Y=A and Y=B, imagine a diamond shape between these levels. While you may find the ore anywhere in that space, the likelihood increases right in the middle, i.e. where the diamond is widest.
What are buried ores?
Some ores are now “buried” ores in 1.18. This means they have a chance of not spawning if exposed to air. If an ore is a “50% buried ore,” this means that when generating, if it is trying to generate in an exposed area, there is a 50% chance that it will just not spawn. The reason for this is that the cave systems are now so much more open in Caves and Cliffs part 2, that the chance of finding lots of exposed ores would be greater if ore generation remained as it was.
Minecraft lava level in 1.18?
You might be asking what this has to do with mining for Ore. Well, have you ever been merrily digging away just to be surprised by the bright orange stuff and burnt to a crisp, all those diamonds burning along with you? There’s your answer. As we’ll address specifically in the diamonds section, it’s worth keeping the lava level in mind, but it’s also relevant to some of the other Ores below, as well. So, to answer the question, the new lava table in Minecraft 1.18 is at -54, so try and mine at level -53 and above. Unless you enjoy the risk of a deadly, red-hot shower.
Now, if you’re still with us, let’s get into the good stuff and take a look at which levels are best to mine at to find specific ores. Pickaxes at the ready…
How to mine for each Ore in Minecraft Caves and Cliffs Part 2
Best level for Coal in 1.18
Coal. Very useful, but also not that difficult to find… Right? Well actually, that all changes in Caves and Cliffs part 2. Coal is still quite a common ore, with triangular distribution centered around Y-level 96, so you’ll mostly find it above ground and higher up underground. It’s 50% buried, so it’s best to mine for it, and you won’t find quite so much exposed coal as you might be used to.
The most crucial thing to note about the change to Coal generation, though, is that it does not spawn beneath level 0. This mean that you will not find any coal while mining in the bottom 64 levels of the world. So make sure you’re fully stocked up on torches before you go delving into the deep.
Best level to find Copper in Minecraft 1.18
While Copper ore is quite readily available above Y=0 in large veins mixed with Granite, Dripstone Caves are one of the easiest places to go caving for large quantities of Raw Copper.
Alternatively, Copper ore is generated in a triangular formation between levels -16 and 112, making Y=48 the best place to find Copper by mining.
Which Minecraft level to find Iron in 1.18
There are quite a few different methods of Iron Ore generation, giving you plenty of opportunities to find the useful material.
Firstly, Iron ore is largely available in massive veins mixed in with Tuff below level zero. As such, coming across any Tuff while caving below Y-level 0 could be an indication there is a lot of Iron nearby.
Higher up, Iron ore is generated frequently in a triangular formation between Y-levels 80 and 384, meaning that Iron will be most common in the mountains the higher up you go. However, because a lot of the chunk space up here is, of course, just air, there actually won’t be all that much iron to be had. But worth a look if you happen to be digging around in the mountain tops anyway.
A similar, while less frequent, triangular formation attempt takes place in every chunk between levels -24 and 56, leaving Y=level 16 as the best place to mine for Iron above 0. Then finally, an additional triangular generation attempt will take place for smaller blobs of Iron Ore between levels -64 and 72, with the greatest chance of finding these veins around Y=4.
Best level to mine for Gold in Minecraft 1.18
With Gold Ore having more uses than ever since the Nether Update, you might be desperate to get your hands on plenty of Gold Ingots for bartering. So let’s find out where is best to find it in 1.18.
Gold Ore will try to generate in a triangular formation between levels -64 and 32, with the center of that being Y=-16. Gold Ore here will be 50% buried, so while it can be found exposed, your best chance of coming across Gold is branch mining for it.
There is also a very small chance of finding Gold in uniform blobs between levels -64 and -46, but as this is rare, probably don’t go actively seeking Gold here, just let it be a nice surprise when you’re mining for something else. (HINT: This might be where Diamonds spawn.)
Of course, the Badlands remain the best place to find Gold in large quantities. Gold Ore will attempt to generate here uniformly – i.e. not in a triangular formation – and frequently between levels 32 and 256.
Best level for Lapis in 1.18
Lapis will generate most commonly in uniform blobs, as opposed to triangles. There is one triangular formation attempt between centering around level 0, so that’s the best level to go mining for Lapis Ore. Then, uniform, buried blobs of Lapis can form anywhere between -64 and 64, so you can come across Lapis while you’re mining pretty much anywhere.
Best level to find Minecraft Diamonds in 1.18
OK, the big one. And thankfully, the simplest one. Diamond will try to generate in a triangular formation between -144 and 16, meaning that the most populated level for diamond is actually -60. This is just above Bedrock. As such, this is quite a dangerous area to mine in with the impending threat of Lava above your head. Instead, the recommended level is to mine for Diamond Ore at Y=-53 in Minecraft 1.18. This is where you should find the most frequent diamond whilst also staying mostly safe from lava.
Diamond is all buried to some extent, so your best bet is to strip mine. This being said, you may be lucky enough to find the occasional vein peeking out of the walls around you.
Best level for Diamond and other ores in Minecraft 1.18
|Coal Ore||Y = 96||Branch mining|
|Copper Ore||Y = 48||Mining or caving|
|Iron Ore||Y = 16||Mining or caving|
|Gold||Y = -16||Branch mining|
|Gold (Badlands)||Y = 32 and up||Mining or caving|
|Lapis||Y = 0||Branch Mining|
|Redstone||Y = as low as possible!||Caving|
|Diamond||Y = -53||Branch mining|
|Emerald (Mountains)||Y = as high as possible!||Mountain climbing!|
More Minecraft Block and Item guides
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- How to make Concrete and Concrete Powder in Minecraft
- How to get Blue Ice in Minecraft
- Everything you need to know about the Minecraft Crafting Table
And head over to our Minecraft hub for even more news, guides and how-tos!
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