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Type Item
Uses Ammunition for a
Dropped by Skeletons
Data Values Hex: 262


Arrows are the projectile ammunition required to properly use a bow weapon. They can be both crafted and gathered as loot.


Fired arrows stick into any object they come in contact with, and will remain there for exactly one minute before disappearing. When firing arrows, the distance from the object and the angle determine how far into the target the arrow will go, and the direction which the shaft will protrude out of the object. Arrows that have been fired by the player and stuck into terrain are retrievable and never break. Arrows that hit a target, such as a mob, cannot be recovered and vanish. Skeleton-fired arrows and arrows fired by a bow with the Infinity enchantment are special entities and cannot be collected, either.

Arrows can bounce off entities like Minecarts or Shields and damage immune mobs. It is also possible for players to damage themselves with their own arrows by firing one directly up and standing still. Arrows fired directly upward using a fully charged bow will fly so high that they disappear from view, but eventually fall. If that arrow lands on a block, and the player is directly beneath that block, then the player breaks that block, the arrow will fall and do one heart of damage to the player. If the block in which an arrow is stuck is destroyed or disappears (e.g. leaves), the arrow will fall and can injure the player or a mob.

Arrows shot through Lava or Fire will catch aflame and show an appropriate animation. They can set other entities they hit on fire. Arrows shot at Minecart tracks will stop the minecart from passing over that block until the arrow Despawns or is collected. An Arrow shot at a Storage Minecart will cause the minecart to break, dropping a Minecart, Chest, and the contents of the Storage Minecart. Before the Beta version 1.2, Skeletons would only drop arrows when killed. They now have a chance of dropping both bones and arrows when killed.

Arrows and Circuits

While arrows shot at Switches or Pressure Plates will not trigger said inputs directly (unless fired from a Dispenser onto a pressure plate), workarounds can be used to trigger circuits from a distance. For instance, a minecart can be used in such a way that destroying it with arrows releases the wooden pressure plate it is resting on, or a painting can be shot off a wall and fall onto a wooden pressure plate to activate it. As of Minecraft 1.8 and the increase of arrow damage, Boats can be used as targets since a fully charged bow will break the boat in one shot.




During Survival Test, skeleton arrows were purple. The purple arrow texture can still be found in the Minecraft.jar file, in the same image as the normal arrows, but it is not in use.

Before release 1.1, arrows could be on fire (like other entities), but they did not set what they hit on fire, and there was no enchantment to fire flaming arrows.

"Tipped" arrows

Minecraft 1.9 added many different types of arrows. Each tipped arrow generally has a Status Effect corresponding to the name of the arrow, which is applied with a Potion. One way to tip an arrow is to shoot it through a lingering potion cloud.

Arrow of Fire Resistance

Arrow of Harming

  • Deals instant, additional damage to the target on impact. Heals undead mobs.

Arrow of Healing

  • Heals the target on impact. Harms undead mobs.

Arrow of Invisibility

Arrow of Leaping

Arrow of Luck

  • Grants the target a Luck effect.

Arrow of Night Vision

Arrow of Poison

Arrow of Regeneration

Arrow of Slowness

Arrow of Strength

Arrow of Swiftness

  • Grants the target a Speed effect.

Arrow of Water Breathing

Arrow of Weakness

Spectral Arrow

  • This arrow has a gold-tip. When it hits a mob or player, an outline will appear around it for a short time. The outline is visible through Blocks.

Water Bottle Arrow

  • The purpose/effect of this arrow is unknown.


  • Firing several arrows into a door and then opening it will cause a very odd multi-arrow sound to play.
  • If an arrow is shot at a Painting, it will turn into a drop item.
  • If an arrow is fired at a Creeper that explodes just before being hit, it will continue to fly through the air towards the target, but may slow down drastically and may appear to become a row of arrows. It will return to normal if the arrow is touched.
  • Before Alpha, Iron Ingots were required to make arrows.

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