According to Minepedia/Light, the changes that occurred in the Halloween update make torches useless for level 16 and below (incidentally, also the level where diamonds start).

Now, that's all fine and dandy, but if a Mob such as a Creeper spawns right next to the player, the player has no time to react. This is particularly bad with Creepers, because one spawning next to you is generally impossible to avoid, particularly in tunnels and such.

That doesn't seem like it would be fair at all (to make next-to-random insta-deaths-by-creeper for the player), and I would be surprised if it behaved that way, but I've not heard or seen anything that indicates that it does not operate that way.

More to the point, even in dark areas I've never had a mob spawn right in front of my face. Sometimes if I'm on top of a hill or something of that sort you can see one spawn in the distance, but never next to you. This leads me to believe that it can't happen, though again I've had no confirmation of this.

Can a mob spawn right next to you in Minecraft?

N.B. I'm referring to darkness-induced spawning. Of course a mob spawner can cause mobs that spawn right next to you ;)

  • 13
    Just as an FYI, The light-changes were reverted on Nov. 5 in the 1.2.1 patch. "Reverted mob spawning back to the old code, it was far to annoying. I have plans on what to do with this" Nov 14, 2010 at 1:51

5 Answers 5


Unless other changes have been made to the spawning code, enemy mobs can't spawn within 24 blocks of your current location. The exception to this is of course mob spawners, but that's a different story.

  • 5
    Correct - mob spawners will spawn mobs when you are next to the spawner, and put those mobs next to you.
    – Broam
    Feb 2, 2012 at 14:42

They can't spawn right next to you; you have a 24-block radius of safety. They can approach you afterwards, but that's different.


In addition to the other answers, a recent change (pre-1.6.1 13w17a) has introduced a feature where a zombie can summon more zombies when they are damaged regardless of damage source, which ignores light level or player range.

Therefore, specifically for zombies, it is possible for a new zombie to randomly spawn near players within the player immobility range if a zombie was damaged and a new one randomly spawned.


I have to disagree with the other answerers. Or at least while you are asleep, because I've recently had a skeleton who spawns right on top of me when I sleep and kills me.

  • 1
    Are you sure that it spawned there? Is it impossible that it just walked to where you slept?
    – Michael K
    Jun 27, 2011 at 14:33
  • 12
    That's a special case. Mobs that wake you up are exempt from the spawning radius.
    – a cat
    Jun 27, 2011 at 15:08
  • 1
    That Skeleton That Spawns Right On Top Of You Is What Notch Programmed In A While Ago, If There Are Any Hostile Mobs Close To You And You Are In An Unlit Area Then The Game Actually Teleports That Hostile Mob To You
    – user24858
    May 3, 2012 at 10:00
  • @fuj1n Incorrect, it's a new mob (and that doesn't happen at all in Minecraft 1.0); see this answer.
    – Kevin Reid
    May 3, 2012 at 13:21

Umm... I'm not quite sure, but I think it is possible if it meets all requirements for spawning there. If there's 2 block gap, light level below 7 it should be possible for creeper, zombie or a skeleton to spawn although it can't spawn on top of the player, because the spot where character is standing is already been taking so it's very unlikely https://minecraft.wiki/w/Spawn

  • 7
    If you read the link you provided carefully, you'll notice it says "There must be no players and no player spawn points within a 24 block distance (spherical) of the spawning block". Oct 24, 2013 at 21:07

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