A little bit of backstory: I’ve been playing on a vanilla SMP with some people I know, and my brother has become power ridden, due to achieving the best maxed out gear. He will kill anyone he finds, for no apparent reason, and enjoys destroying and stealing their bases to make his own. Unfortunately, he has become more powerful then me, and I can’t defeat him with PVP. But, he isn’t the smartest in recognizing traps that look like normal builds. Are there any traps that will instantly kill him, and look persuading enough to be a normal building? They don’t need to collect his items, as he would find a way to collect them again.
Trap design in Minecraft is nearly as complex as it is IRL. It's about presentation, and the mechanism. All traps will require you to prepare the field in advance, and to be able to do so undetected. Given that you're looking to destroy him and his items, I'd recommend being the bait, yourself.
Here's a recent article with some ideas for reference: https://www.sportskeeda.com/minecraft/top-5-minecraft-traps-fool-friends
What Minecraft traps have in common is fairly simple:
- A Trigger of some sort.
- A damage-dealing element (TNT is classic, but puffer fish, arrow dispensers, and lava are all viable - as is straight-up fall damage in many cases.)
- A lure to draw the victim in.
#3 is probably going to be your issue, unless your brother is hunting you the moment you login - in which case gathering enough materials to prepare the trap without getting killed first is the problem. I recommend logging in when he's offline for the preparation phase.
The good news is, you know one thing he loves to do: PvP combat.
Most traps based on a structure will be defeated by the likelihood that he will simply enter the base by making his own door, since destruction of the base is a goal of his. So offer him something else to focus on: a PvP kill that will get away.
A dark cave that already exists on the map is a good venue for a simple "all the TNT" trap. Hollow out the ceiling and fill it with sand and gravel. Place a button or pressure plate trigger connected with redstone to the TNT cluster under the floor (ideally the entrance-end of it, so that the explosion propagates from behind him, towards him, making him more likely to jump directly into it if he hears the fuse.
With a 1-tile-thick destructable ceiling (like dirt which occurs naturally in caves), and a large volume of sand/gravel above it the process goes like this:
- TNT goes off, hopefully several blocks of it get him in their direct damage radius killing him instantly.
- If that doesn't kill him, the ceiling above has been destroyed now as well, and he's in a crater beneath it, wounded. Being caught in falling sand/gravel will inflict further damage, and if he's caught in it he'll start drowning.
- If you used a naturally occurring cave and he survives 1 and 2, he'll be pretty well softened up and hopefully dropped into a natural cave and be picked off by mobs - or you, if you didn't die during the triggering of the trap.
This will be most effective if you're in the trap with him. You will also die, and lose all of your stuff, but that's part of selling the trap.
If you survive and he doesn't, you can either grab his stuff, or get a bucket of lava and simply incinerate everything. But plan to die in your own trap.
If he's truly paranoid about traps, then he'll wear a full set of blast resistant armor and the TNT won't soften him up as much as you'd hope, you'll need thicker sand-fall to finish the job.
If you want to go FULL ACME, and don't mind the mining/smelting necessary.... anvils fall like sand does. Bonus points if you say "Meep! Meep!" in chat after he gets flattened by one.
There's a number of delayed trigger mechanisms you can use to add layers of falling TNT into the mix, five sets of delayed TNT of four blocks of more will absolutely kill anything dead, but the wiring for that is so elaborate you're unlikely to finish before being detected.
If he likes to kill with a Bow, simply place the beginning of your trap a few blocks before a 90-degree corner in the cave. Flee from him around that corner. Now, to get the shot angle he needs to follow you around. Trigger as soon as he comes around the corner and begin attacking him in melee. In all the fuss he may not even hear the TNT fuse.
Trap design is a dense field. Good luck.
In addition to the excellent suggestions by William Walker III about the setup, something else I'd recommend is TNT Minecarts.
The main weakness of a TNT trap is that the amount of time required to actually detonate may allow your target to escape by blocking it off or by shielding in time.
However, TNT Minecarts explode the instant they hit the ground if they fall enough. If you have a tunnel in a dark area, you can place leaves along the roof and put rails on top of the leaves, then put TNT Minecarts on top of the leaves (leave at least a 3 block gap from the floor to the ceiling, 4 is safer so you don't blow yourself up).
Now, all you need to do is lure your target to follow you into the tunnel, and then take a pair of shears and break the leaves directly above you as you run. Make sure you aren't sprint-jumping since jumping decreases your mining speed; if you just run, this will instantly break the leaves and drop a bunch of TNT Minecarts on top of your target, who will probably have a very bad time :)
I would recommend testing this out in a separate world single-player first just to make sure it works properly.
This idea is taken from a video by Dream where he used the same trap under a tree to kill a few of his hunters
Another fun trap you could try is the good old nether portal trap. If you can bait your target into following you or someone into a nether portal, and then block off the portal with obsidian after your bait enters, your target will have a hard time getting out. If they carry a high efficiency pickaxe on them, they can still dig out, but they must dig at least two blocks (if you block both faces entirely) and you can replace one in the time it takes them to dig out the other. This is mostly just really annoying because of the Nausea effect.
I don't remember if it's annoying to get out, or literally impossible; if I'm wrong, could someone correct me? Thanks.
What if you got your friends to help you jump him? Or what about this- right on the other side of your nether portal, uses lots of obsidian to create an inescapable box right on the other side of your portal with an almost completed wither and lots of TNT, bait him through the portal by wearing enchanted diamond armor, (netherite would to too expensive)then once he comes through, destroy the portal and place obsidian in it to keep him from relighting it, light the TNT, then place the last wither skull to spawn the wither and hopefully, the blasts would kill him. *Potion of the Turtle Master would help *Wither Roses on the ground would help but they may kill you before he does