An Ore is a type of Block naturally found in Minecraft. Ore is primarily collected for crafting purposes, to make items such as Tools, Armor, and more. Redstone Ore is used as a type of wiring which can be used to create redstone circuits, Compasses, Clocks and other items. Coal Ore can be used to smelt other Ores, such as Gold and Iron for storage purposes or building. Since layer 0 is the lowest layer and consists of Bedrock, no Ore can be found there. It can, however, be spawned very close to the bottom of the map, at layer 1. Certain Ores have the habit of spawning at any layer.
An Ore Block looks like a usual Stone block with different coloured shards or gems embedded into it. They are always the same colour on each Ore, though some Ores, like Glowstone, are different in that respect.
In order to get a drop from an Ore, the player must have the right type of Pickaxe. If they do not, the mining will take ridiculously long and the player won't get the Ore drop.
Overworld Ore is Ore embedded within Stone. The majority of Ores in-game have real-life equivalents. All Ore has realistic depths in which they can be found. However, generation per-biome is not completely as truthful to reality.
- Main article: Coal Ore
Coal Ore is a very common Ore that can be found underground or in rock formations such as mountains, in relatively large deposits. Coal is mined from Coal Ore and can be used as Furnace fuel, or crafted with a Stick to create Torches. Coal Ore can be successfully mined using any type of Pickaxe.
- Main article: Iron Ore
Iron Ore is most commonly found underground in small veins. It can be smelted into Iron Ingots, which can be used to craft many useful items, including Armor, Weapons, Tools and Minecarts, as well as their Rails. Iron Ore can be found between layers 64 and 1. Iron can only be mined with a Stone, Iron, or Diamond Pickaxe, otherwise a drop will not be obtained.
- Main article: Redstone Ore
Redstone Ore is a type of Ore found less than 16 levels above the bedrock layer. Added in the third Secret Friday Update, Redstone Ore is more common than Coal if at the correct layer. Redstone Ore must be mined with an Iron Pickaxe or better. When destroyed, several piles of Redstone Dust will appear, a property unique to Redstone.
Redstone Dust is currently used in the construction of various traps, mechanisms, and contraptions dependent on simple circuits. After the 1.9. Pre-Release 3, Redstone Dust can be used for brewing.
If there is a block or entity update adjacent to a Redstone Ore block, this Ore will transform into a technical block called Glowing Redstone Ore, which emits 9 light level and some particle effects, similar to that of a Nether Portal, only red.
- Main article: Gold Ore
Gold Ore can be found deep underground in small veins. It can be smelted to make Gold Ingots which can make a variety of Tools and Weapons. Gold is a very soft material, similar to in real life, and is generally considered a bad choice for crafting due to its low durability. A Gold Tool only has the strength of a wooden Tool. It wears out much quicker, despite mining at a rapid speed.
Gold is mainly used in decorations and the crafting of Powered Rails. Nine Gold Ingots can be placed in a crafting square to make a Gold Block, and the Gold Block can turn back into nine Ingots, making for a practical "storage unit". Otherwise, Gold Ore is somewhat overshadowed by other ores. It can only be successfully mined with an Iron or Diamond Pickaxe. A Gold Pickaxe can't even mine it's own Ore.
Lapis Lazuli Ore
- Main article: Lapis Lazuli (Ore)
Lapis Lazuli Ore (sometimes called Lapis or Lazuli) is a rare Ore Block that can be found in Abandoned Mine Shafts, or in areas between levels 13 and 14. When mined, it turns into four Lapis Lazuli dyes, which can be used to dye dog collars, Wool or a Sheep to turn it blue, or create a decorative Lapis Lazuli Block. For a drop, the player must mine the Ore with a Stone, Iron or Diamond Pickaxe.
- Main article: Diamond Ore
Diamond Ore is an extremely rare, valuable Ore only found very deep underground and in sparse veins, which can spawn diagonally. In order to drop a Diamond, this Ore can be mined by using an Iron or Diamond Pickaxe.
Diamonds can be used to create Diamond Tools, which have the strongest durability and most possible uses in the game. A Diamond Pickaxe is the only Pickaxe which can mine Obsidian.
- Main article: Emerald Ore
Emerald Ore is the rarest ore to date in Minecraft, 25 times more so than Diamond Ore. It almost always spawns in only one-block veins. When mined with an Iron Pickaxe or higher, it drops an Emerald; the only implemented use of Emeralds to date is for trading with Villagers. An easier way to get Emeralds is to create a Cow or Pig farm, collect the drops, and go to the nearest butcher. Butcher Villagers only accept them raw, though.
- Main article: Emerald Ore#History
Ruby Ore was added during the 1.3 snapshots, but was shortly replaced by Emerald Ore. It was scrapped because Dinnerbone was colorblind at the time, and Ruby and Emerald have too similar an appearance. This Ore is currently nonexistant. However, some mods use this old texture.
- Main article: Glowstone
Glowstone is a material that can only be found in The Nether. When mining Glowstone, it drops Glowstone Dust, which can be used to recreate Glowstone Blocks at a ratio of 9:1 (dust to block). Glowstone Blocks, when placed, emit light - Glowstone Blocks will emit a light level slightly higher than torches, equal to that of sunlight. It can be successfully with any item, including bare fists.
A more efficient way to mine this Ore is to use a tool with the Silk Touch enchantment, allowing collection of the whole Glowstone Block, which is worth 4 Glowstone Dust. This also prevents the bother of crafting it.
No Tools or Items can be made with Glowstone as of yet.
Nether Quartz Ore
- Main article: Nether Quartz Ore
Nether Quartz is a crystal Ore found in The Nether, appearing in the 13w01a snapshot for the 1.5 update. Nether Quartz is used in making the Redstone Comparator.
An Ore Vein is a naturally generated structure found underground that is almost always encased in Stone Blocks. Ore Veins look like block structures with bulbous bits randomly coming out along it. Sometimes they are just cube shaped, and some of them look extremely odd.
- Smelting Ores without a Pickaxe with Silk Touch will always yield Ingots.
- Gold is the only Pickaxe that can't mine its own Ore.
- Ores of Minecraft Wiki - A wiki about Minecraft's Ores (mostly talking about modded ones).