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Food and hunger

« Death | Play-by-play »

Once you have tools and shelter, your next priority will be food. Hunger will take a while to hit, so it shouldn't be a problem on your first day, but you'll try to pick up some food for when it does. However, after you've been moving around for a while, your food bar will begin rippling and start to decrease. If your food bar drops below 90%, you will not regenerate health, and if it gets to 30%, you can't sprint. If the hunger bar goes down to empty, you will begin losing health. Unless you're in Hard mode (and a beginning player shouldn't be), you can't actually starve to death, but you will go down to 1 health point () in Normal mode or half your health () in Easy mode, and that leaves you quite vulnerable. You don't lose hunger in Peaceful mode, so it's the least of your concern there.

 
Walking, mining blocks, and even placing blocks all cost some hunger, but all of those are minimal compared to the items below. These are the things that cause the most hunger, in order of cost.
 
  • Healing damage of any sort. Avoid taking falls of more than 3 blocks, drowning yourself, or otherwise taking damage, as healing damage costs a lot of hunger. Especially avoid…
  • Fighting: Both attacking mobs and receiving damage cost hunger, even before you start trying to heal damage. (10 blows either way matches healing Half Heart.svg, one health point.) You will need to slaughter a few animals, but pick your fights carefully.
  • Sprinting. If you double-tap the forward movement key (W by default), or press your sprint key (Left Ctrl by default), you will sprint. This moves somewhat faster, but it also uses a lot of food, especially if you go any distance. (30 meters matches healing Half Heart.svg.)
  • Jumping. Obviously, you'll need to jump some just to get around, but don't bounce around randomly or unnecessarily. (15 jumps matches healing Half Heart.svg) Sprinting jumps are especially costly, 4 times as much as a regular jump, although they are the fastest mode of transportation early in the game.
Note that if you're (staying) at full health, and not moving, fighting, mining or placing blocks, then you will use no food. Thus if your character has a secure place to stay, you can just stay put to conserve food while waiting out the night, a storm, or crop/animal growth.