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Top Tips For Building Bridges in Minecraft

Posted by Jamie on March 23, 2017

As you explore your world of Minecraft, you are going to come across rivers of water or lava or canyons. While you can go around, if it is a regular route of yours, it is better to build a bridge. Here are some top tips for building bridges in Minecraft.

On paper, Minecraft should never have been the success it is. A block 8-bit game with weird monsters, limited music and no storyline. Yet it delivered the kind of sandbox we were looking for in a setting that is difficult to dislike. And that soundtrack.

You can build just about anything in Minecraft. From models of the Starship Enterprise to full recreations of entire cities. Your imagination is the only real limit and that is the real reason why Minecraft is so popular.

There are hundreds of websites showing you how to build things and they all list the recipes needed to build them. Few seem to cover bridges though.

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How to build a bridge in Minecraft

Basic bridge building is one of the trickier skills you need to a successful career in Minecraft. Here are the basics of building bridges in Minecraft. I’ll walk you through building a basic stone bridge right here.

  1. Identify the beginning and end point of your bridge. You will obviously want to join the two sides together.
  2. Prepare the ground either side. While it is much easier to have both sides at the same level, it isn’t always necessary.
  3. Create a straight span from end to end in wood. Stand on the very edge, press Shift to look back and down and add a block, rinse and repeat from one side to the other. That is a very basic bridge.

This would serve nicely as a bridge and does, but this is Minecraft so we need to take it further. In stone.

Pressing Shift allows you to look back and exposes the face of the end block to which you attach the next. You cannot fall of using this method so is a great way for beginner bridge builders to find their way.

If you don’t want to use the Shift method, you may find it easier to crouch walk as you build your bridge. As you will likely already know, it is easy to fall of such a narrow construction until you’re used to it so crouch walking can help you survive or not have to run all the way round to get back on.

Build an arch bridge from stone in Minecraft

  1. Measure the center of the bridge and mark it with another block of wood
  2. Build the center of the arch by spanning a few stone blocks either side of that center point but across one. For example, if your bridge is 20 blocks across, mark the center at 10, and lay 3 stone blocks either side of that center point which stands beside the wooden bridge not on it.
  3. Add another layer on top of those center stone blocks and two stone underneath the edge 1 overlapping. That is a basic arch.
  4. Continue adding stone while going down and across until it looks something like an arch.
  5. Add a top level running the entire length of the bridge to make it look the part.
  6. If there are empty spaces between the top layer and your arch, fill them with stone.

If you want a graphical representation of this method, check out this page on imgur. The method differs slightly but it gets the job done.

Variations on the theme can include a bridge four blocks wide with fences running along the length. Metal bridges, suspension bridges, cantilever bridges and just about anything you can think of. The main challenge is figuring out how to construct it. As all blocks except gravel are self-supporting, you can make any shape you like. If you can work out how to build it, the rest is simple.

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If you do get stuck, GrabCraft has dozens of bridge blueprints you can download to your Minecraft install to play with. You can then leave as-is or experiment with your own tweaks.

Once you become adept at building basic bridges, why not take on the mother of all. A suspension bridge. This tutorial on the Minecraft forum does just that and is an excellent way to learn how to expand your expertise. Be warned though, this project is a serious time and resource sink. A bit like the game itself really!

Have you built any bridges? Want to share them? Link to them below if you do!

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