The massive Caves and Cliffs update for Minecraft that was revealed earlier this year has been partially delayed.
Developer Mojang says update 1.17 for the sandbox game will now arrive in two parts, with the first arriving this summer as originally planned, and the second being pushed back for the holiday season.
Mojang says it has decided to split the update into two parts to ensure quality, manage technical complexity, and maintain the health of the development team.
Overall, players can expect to see some new blocks and monsters in the summer portion of the update, while more complex portions that change the way the world is created will arrive in the portion scheduled for the holiday season.
“This update is huge, we’re changing what the world looks like in Minecraft,” explains Henrik Kniberg, a vanilla game designer.
The new mountain and cave systems planned for the update require a change in global elevation, and this presents new problems to solve when it comes to Minecraft’s performance.
“There’s more happening when the world is higher,” Kniberg says.
Fortunately, not everything in the Caves and Cliffs update requires fundamental changes to how the world is created. New mobs, such as adorable sea urchins and feisty goats, will be included in the summer update, along with several new biomes and building blocks.
These include things like drip leaves, glowing berries, and deep plate.
While most of the world’s generation will be returning to the holiday update, the summer update will at least include a taste — you can expect to see copper and geodes when the summer half of the update arrives.
New caves and mountains, as well as an ever increasing global elevation, will arrive with the holiday update.
Mojang says splitting the update into two parts means he won’t have to ask his team for extra work, which was necessary to ship the update as originally planned.
Before the release, you’ll still be able to test some of the upcoming features in beta form – in the Bedrock version, you can switch to the “Caves & Cliffs” option in trials, while the Java version will be downloadable for screenshots with some demo features available.