A pickaxe is perhaps the most important tool you will use in Minecraft. Pickaxes can act as offensive weapons, but their true value lies in harvesting. A good pickaxe needs to be sturdy, efficient, and fast, and while Netherite Pickaxe is definitely a valuable tool, it can be further improved upon if you use enchantments. Some of them are a waste of time, and some of them will transform your exploration efforts. Now, let’s see the best enchantments for a pickaxe in Minecraft.
Editor’s Note: This post has been updated in November 2023, to reflect the most up-to-date state of the game.
1. Efficiency saves time
Efficiency is one enchantment associated with most tools in Minecraft. In the context of the pickaxe, it will allow you to mine blocks faster, saving you time. It goes up to level 5, and even though all levels are useful, you should strive for the highest level.
Efficiency is simply essential if you want to collect materials faster. In the same amount of time, you can collect vastly more ores, stones, and other materials. You will also move through the tunnels and dungeons faster without spending too much time lingering on a single block. You can acquire efficiency through enchanting tables (except stone or diamond pickaxes) or through combining two levels of enchantment on the Anvil.
2. Fortune gives you more resources
The second best enchantment that you can apply to your pickaxe is Fortune. Fortune gives you a better yield of materials no matter the tool that it’s applied to. Fortune I gives a 33% (1⁄3) chance to multiply drops by 2 (averaging 33% (1⁄3) increase), Fortune II gives a chance to multiply drops by 2 or 3 (25% (1⁄4) chance each, averaging 75% (3⁄4) increase), and Fortune III gives a chance to multiply drops by 2, 3, or 4 (20% (1⁄5) chance each, averaging 120% (11⁄5) increase).
Fortune is sadly incompatible with Silk Touch, but it can still be applied in tandem with Efficiency.
3. Unbreaking makes your pickaxe last longer
What good is it if it is a fast tool if it breaks easily? I agree this is why Unbreaking is the third-best enchantment you can have on your pickaxe. Unbreaking increases the chances that your pickaxe won’t consume durability with each use. This means you can mine more blocks before the pickaxe needs repair, making it more efficient and cost-effective over time.
Repairing or crafting high-tier pickaxes can be resource-intensive, especially when using rare materials like diamonds. With Unbreaking, you reduce the frequency of repairs, saving resources in the long run. Pickaxe with Unbreaking will also effectively increase the duration of mining sessions because you won’t have to go to the surface as often for a new set of tools.
4. Mending makes your mining sessions longer
Mending constantly uses the experience points you collect while playing to repair the pickaxe. As you mine, kill mobs, or perform various actions that grant XP, Mending redirects those points to the pickaxe, keeping it in good condition without the need for manual repairs. Like Unbreaking, Mending has a variety of useful uses, such as durability preservation and extending mining sessions.
With Mending, you can use the pickaxe continuously without worrying about it breaking. Mending is, however, a treasure enchantment, meaning that you can only get it from jungle temple, stronghold, and ancient city chest loot, fishing, raid drops, or trading with a librarian of any level.
5. Silk Touch preserves the original block
With Silk Touch, you can mine ores like diamonds, emeralds, Redstone, and other valuable resources without the need for Fortune. Instead of getting multiple drops, you collect the ore blocks directly, preserving their original form. It’s also ideal for collecting decorative blocks like glass, ice, or grass blocks.
Silk Touch is naturally an enchantment that is incompatible with Fortune.
6. Curse of Vanishing is no good at all
Curse of Vanishing is rarely considered useful because it causes the enchanted item to disappear when the player dies. For tools like pickaxes, which are valuable and often made with rare materials like diamonds, the Curse of Vanishing can be frustrating because it means you risk losing the pickaxe permanently if you die.
In most cases, players prefer to avoid this curse on tools and armor they invest time and resources in. So this is pretty much the most straightforward answer on why the Curse of Vanishing is the worst enchantment you can have on a picaxe.
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