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I've been at my automatic mob grinder waiting for hours for a zombie to drop iron for a cauldron (This is on a Skyblock map by the way), but no armor, potatoes, carrots, equipment, or even iron has dropped. Then, I manually killed a zombie and it dropped an iron ingot.

I couldn't find any information on the wiki, so can someone help me?

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Unfortunately, no they will not drop rare drops without player intervention.


According to the wiki, in order for a zombie to drop an iron ingot, it must be slain by a player or tamed wolf:

They can also drop one of the following when killed by a player or tamed wolf:

  • Iron Ingot
  • Carrot
  • Potato (baked potato when killed with fire)

However, the odds are low, and baby zombies don't drop them at all:

Baby zombies cannot drop the three items mentioned above when killed by a player or tamed wolf, but they still drop 0–2 rotten flesh after dying.

This drop has a 2.5% chance of occurring, increasing by 1% per level of looting. Individual items have the following chances of dropping:

  • 1⁄120 (about 0.83%)
  • 7⁄600 (about 1.17%) with Looting I
  • 3⁄200 (1.5%) with Looting II
  • 11⁄600 (about 1.83%) with Looting III

Similarly, equipment also has a low chance of being dropped:

Zombies have an 8.5% chance of dropping their naturally-spawned equipment and drop it with a random durability. Each level of Looting increases the chance by 1 percentage point (11.5% with Looting III).

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    Thank you very much. Looks like I'll have to remodel my farm on Skyblock 😅
    – Pigg
    Aug 6 at 18:47
  • @Pigg no worries! Glad to help! Aug 6 at 19:17

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