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Minecraft update 1.9 has completely changed combat

Shields! Dual-wielding! Beetroot! More.

Minecraft's PC version has finally hit version 1.9, which developer Mojang has named the Combat Update.

As you might expect, the game's rather basic fighting mechanics have seen the biggest changes.

Players can now craft shields to defend themselves from enemy attacks.

And, for the first time in more than six years of Minecrafting, players can now officially dual-wield items in the game.

This extends outside of combat, too - meaning you can dig with a spade and hold open your map, or plant torches down at the same time.

New types of arrow and new attacks for your sword and axe have also been added, along with new enemies and other blocks.

You can now cook up a nice beetroot stew, for example, or settle down for the night in one of the game's igloos.

Newly-added End Cities house the Shulker enemy, along with the elytra item for flying.
Elytra and shield equipped.

The full list of changes, per Mojang.com, lies below:

  • Added shields
  • Attacking now has a "cool-down" delay, making it more important to time your attacks
  • You can now hold items in both hands (default quick key to swap items is 'F')
  • Swords have a special sweep attack
  • Axes have a special crushing blow attack
  • Added the elytra
  • New mob: Shulker
  • Expanded The End
  • Added Chorus plants
  • New Purpur blocks
  • New End Rod block
  • Added dragon head block
  • Ender Dragon can be resummoned
  • Added beetroot and beetroot soup (from MC:PE)
  • Added grass path block
  • Added igloos
  • Armor protection values have been lowered
  • Added tipped arrows
  • Added spectral arrows
  • Added Frost Walker enchantment and frosted ice block
  • Added a whole bunch of new sound effects
  • Added sound effect subtitles
  • Brewing Stand now requires Blaze Powder to activate
  • Added skeleton riders
  • We believe we've fixed MC-10 and a whole bunch of other issues
  • Removed Herobrine

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Tom Phillips

Deputy Editor

Tom is Eurogamer's deputy editor. He writes lots of news, some of the puns and makes sure we put the accent on Pokémon.

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