In Minecraft, the crossbow is a powerful item that can be crafted using sticks, iron, and a tripwire hook, or found on one of the aggressive Pillager mobs. You can keep it pre-loaded to pull out in the middle of mob swarms, or when you just need to fire a quick shot into a skeleton on the horizon. While it can never hit the same max damage as the trusty regular bow, the crossbow is excellent for clearing out hordes of weaker enemies. Plus you can use it to shoot off fireworks! Stick around to learn about the best crossbow enchantments in Minecraft.
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6 Best Crossbow Enchantments in Minecraft: The Details
When it comes to enchanting a crossbow, you want to ensure you don’t waste your hard-earned XP on an item that will just sit around in a chest unused. You can fit three enchantments on a crossbow, but which ones should you prioritize? Let’s break it down.
Unbreaking is a very common enchantment across many classes of items. Rather than providing your items with extra durability, Unbreaking actually gives your tools a small percentage chance on each swing to not take any durability damage at all for that individual swing.
For a crossbow, this translates to the crossbow itself not taking any damage when it fires an arrow. This is an invaluable enchantment to have if your crossbow already has other, more functional enchantments on it, or you want your crossbow to last much longer than it would’ve already.
You can get the Unbreaking enchantment at the enchanting table, or find it stored in books across treasure sites like Pillager towers, Woodland mansion libraries, or desert and jungle temples.
The Multi-Shot enchantment is one of the few enchantments that are unique to the crossbow in Minecraft. It allows a single arrow to fan out into three different arrows when you fire your crossbow,, allowing you to make quick work of a room of weaker mobs.
This enchantment is excellent for overworld fighting, turning your crossbow into a makeshift shotgun. It’s especially powerful against groups of slimes or magma cubes.
Multi-Shot is mutually exclusive with the Piercing enchantment, as both are different methods of hitting multiple mobs. Multi-Shot is better for wider rooms, while Piercing is superior if the mobs are in a small chamber or walking in a straight line.
Possibly the best use for Multi-Shot is to combine the enchanted crossbow with magically tipped arrows. The extra arrows duplicated by the crossbow will still bear the power of their magical tip. That way you can use Arrows of Poison or Harming against entire groups of mobs. This can have a devastating effect in PVP situations, letting you poison entire clans of opponents right away.
You can acquire Multi-Shot at any time using an enchanting table. The biggest downside is that it does deal three points of durability damage to your crossbow with every shot, so it may be wise to already have the Unbreaking or Mending enchantment applied before use.
3. Quick Charge
The one major weakness of the crossbow is that it takes a while to pull the arrow back. The Quick Charge enchantment solves this problem by letting you notch arrows with lightning speed. Usually, it takes 1.25 seconds to draw a crossbow and ready it for firing. Each level of the enchantment reduces this draw time by 0.25 seconds, with the third maximum level of quick charge resulting in only a half second of draw time.
The Quick Charge enchantment can be fantastic for PVP, as you can take other players by surprise and out-gun them. You can also combine Quick Charge with several other enchantments here, giving you a rapid-fire long-range weapon with versatile capabilities.
You can craft the lower levels of Quick Charge on an enchanting table, but you’ll need to do a bit of work for the third and highest level. It can only be obtained through trading with villagers or by combining two Quick-Charging Level 2 crossbows on an anvil.
Mending is always one of the best enchantments you can place on any item in Minecraft. It allows the XP orbs that you find in the world to absorb directly into the durability damage of an enchanted item, rather than being absorbed by the player to eventually enchant new ones. It’s a better version of the Unbreaking enchantment, as Mending will truly allow you to keep a magical item going forever.
While there are certainly better candidates for a Mending enchantment (we’re looking at you, Netherite Silk Touch Pickaxe), a particularly well-built crossbow that already has high levels of Quick Charge and either Piercing or Multi-Shot may be deserving of Mending on top of that. This room-clearing weapon could last forever!
Mending is one of the hardest enchantments to get ahold of. It can appear as chest loot, fishing, or trading with a librarian villager. Additionally, if you’ve added the full range of bookcases around your enchanting table to be able to do Level 30 enchantments, any one of these you apply to a tool or weapon like the Crossbow comes with a 1% chance that you will also acquire Mending as a side enchantment.
Piercing is another enchantment that is exclusive to the crossbow. It allows any of the arrows that you fire from the enchanted crossbow to pass directly through any mobs they hit, continuing to hit more behind them. This can be a godsend at the bottom of a narrow tunnel or steep ravine. You’ll be able to push entire conga-lines of mobs into the dust. It’s very useful against zombies in particular, as they tend to walk forward in groups.
Each level of Piercing allows you to hit an additional enemy, with the top level bringing four whole mobs down. It’s also useful for arrow conservation, as the arrow will simply stick into the wall behind the mobs if it hasn’t hit enough of them to use up all of its piercing magic.
You can find the Piercing enchantment as common loot in chests, but you can also easily apply it using an enchantment table.
6. Curse of Vanishing
This special enchantment can be applied to every item in the game that is capable of holding enchantments. The Curse of Vanishing makes whatever item it’s applied to disappear upon the death of the player holding it. This may not sound like a benefit (it’s even called a “curse”), but it’s very useful when applied to the right crossbow.
Say you’ve made a weapon specifically for causing massive chaos in PVP, like our Multi-Shot example above. You don’t want that weapon just floating over your body if you’re downed! This is where the Curse of Vanishing comes in. If you’re killed by another player during a raid, your weapon will disappear before it can be turned against your unsuspecting teammates. This lets you attack recklessly and focus on doing as much damage as possible.
You can only find the Curse of Vanishing via chest loot at hidden locations, fishing, or trading with villagers. It can’t be added via the enchantment table.
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