Every official jockey that can spawn in Minecraft: Java Edition
In Minecraft terminology, a “jockey” is any entity riding another entity. A number of these mobs spawn naturally in-game, though certain combinations can also be conjured through the use of console commands.
By default, Minecraft is capable of spawning three different jockey types. Some of these jockeys involve variations of different mobs, specifically pertaining to the rider.
Depending on the version of the game being played, these variations can be quite diverse. Bedrock Edition has access to additional jockey variants.
Though these enemies aren’t particularly tough to defeat, it doesn’t hurt to be aware of each official jockey type in case it’s encountered in the game. Furthermore, knowing how these opponents spawn can prevent players from being ambushed.
Skeleton Horsemen and other official jockey mob type in Minecraft: Java Edition
A standard Chicken Jockey is arguably the most common jockey encountered in Minecraft. It involves a chicken being ridden by a baby mob.
By default, the chicken is usually ridden by a Baby Zombie. However, it can also be ridden by a Baby Zombie Piglin, a Baby Zombie Villager, a Baby Drowned Zombie, or a Baby Husk Zombie.
Players can encounter a specific Chicken Jockey, depending on the locale they find themselves in. For example, if they’re near a body of water or in a dry desert, players are more likely to encounter Drowned Zombie or Husk Zombie variants of Chicken Jockeys. This is because Drowned and Husks appear in water and in deserts, respectively.
In Minecraft: Bedrock Edition, Baby Zombies are capable of riding many different mobs as a jockey, including Ocelots, cats, wolves, cows, pigs, and many more. Unfortunately, this feature isn’t available in Java Edition, though Mojang may change things in the future.
The rarest of jockey mobs, Skeleton Horsemen only appear in very specific circumstances in Minecraft.
When a Skeleton Trap Horse spawns via lightning strike and a player is 10 blocks or less away, a lightning strike will cause four Skeleton Horsemen to appear. These foes arrive with enchanted iron helmets and enchanted bows.
Skeleton Horsemen can be quite agile in combat, strafing from side to side while firing their arrows. However, there’s a large upside to defeating these jockeys. Killing one and leaving its horse alive will allow players to tame and ride the animal.
Skeleton Horses are among the fastest rideable mounts in Minecraft and can even comb the depths of the sea floor. This is because skeletal horses are not buoyant, causing them to sink (but not drown) to the bottom of a body of water.
Even better, Skeleton Horses have a five-block jump height, allowing them to clear obstacles easily.
In Minecraft: Java Edition, Spider Jockeys are mobs that consist of a skeleton riding a spider. In Bedrock Edition, the variants are expanded to include Stray Zombie and Wither Skeleton riders as well as Cave Spiders. However, Java only permits standard skeletons and spiders by default.
Whenever a skeleton spawns in Minecraft, there is a 1% chance that a skeleton will be riding atop it. In Hard Mode, spiders also have a chance to spawn with a beneficial status effect such as Speed, Strength, Regeneration, or Invisibility. These effects last nearly endlessly, making spider jockeys even more formidable.
Both the rider and the mount can attack at once, racking up damage on unprotected players.
If a Minecraft player destroys the rider or the mount, the remaining part of the duo will still actively attack them until it is defeated or its target flees the area. If the spider lands in water, the skeleton will dismount it and attempt to chase the player down. The skeleton comes equipped with a standard bow, meaning it can attack at range.
As they ride spiders, Skeleton Jockeys are also capable of scaling tall walls unless players take preventative steps. However, this tandem of spider and skeleton isn’t perfect. Occasionally, the skeleton’s arrows and the spider’s movements can cause the rider to kill itself or its mount with stray arrows.
In addition to the listed official types of jockey mobs, there are several others that have not been explicitly recognized as Minecraft jockeys by Mojang.
These foes can still appear under certain circumstances but have never been referenced as jockeys by the developers. They include:
- Hoglin Jockeys – Baby Piglins riding Hoglins.
- Hoglin Jockey Towers – Multiple Baby Piglins sitting atop each other in a tower formation while riding a Hoglin.
- Ravager Jockeys – A Pillager riding a Ravager.
- Strider Jockeys – A Baby Strider riding an adult Strider. These jockeys can also appear as Zombie Piglins riding a Strider.
Perhaps in future content releases or media drops, Mojang will dignify these creatures with the appropriate designation of being jockeys. However, for the time being, these entities are left in a semi-nebulous space between being mere mobs and being legitimized jockeys.