Around the Block: Eroded Badlands

Actually the bestlands!

When we wrote about the Badlands biome last year, we firmly established that it’s actually one of the nicest places to set up home, in part because of the stunning views. But there’s a particular variation that’s even more impressive – so impressive, in fact, that we’ve made it our biome of the month. Welcome, friends, to the eroded badlands.

Where the standard badlands biome features flat-topped mesas cut through by deep river valleys, the eroded badlands inverts things – most of the terrain is flat, but you’ll find it packed with steep-sided, skyward-stretching spires called “hoodoos”.

How do these hoodoos form? Well, the sandy rock that makes up mesa biomes is pretty soft, and the endless winds and fearsome rivers that roar through these biomes will eat it away over the years, bit by bit. After many centuries of this, only the very centers of the old mesas are left.

Mojang’s physical geography department tells us that this process is called “erosion”, and that it happens in the real world too – in places like Utah, Alberta, Turkey, Armenia, Taiwan, and Serbia. Perhaps the most famous example is Utah’s Bryce Canyon, which became a national park in 1928.

Back in Minecraft, eroded badlands contain most of the same resources as regular badlands: plenty of cacti and dead bushes, and a lot of gold. You won’t find a lot of passive mobs living there, but you’ll find plenty of spiders, skeletons, zombies, and creepers to keep away from.

Nonetheless, if you bring along some water and a few saplings and seeds, then it’s very possible to build yourself a beautiful orchard and garden full of flowers. From there, you’ll easily be able to carve out an idyllic existence in this stunning, ancient landscape.

Duncan Geere
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Duncan Geere
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