As we reported, there have been horses running around since the 1.6 update of Minecraft. These animals are not only for decoration; you can tame and breed them. Horses are the fastest form of transportation in Minecraft 1.6 and therefore very handy to have. They also jump very high, so mountains are no longer a problem when you have your own best friend. But how does it work?
To tame horses in Minecraft 1.6, you will have to find a horse first. Horses almost always spawn on the 'Plains' or close to it. They usually appear in groups of four. To tame a wild horse, you need to jump on it. You do this by approaching the beast with empty hands (there are skeletal and zombie horses, so "beast" is appropriate here), and press the right mouse button.
In all likelihood, the horse will start bucking and you'll fly straight off of it. If you do this about 5 times, the horse will let you sit on its back, and is then tamed. To speed up the process up, you can feed wild horses. Below is a list of foods and their effects on the animal.
It's nice to have a tamed horse, but you won't be able to do anything useful with it yet. You'll notice when you're sitting on its back that you can't control the animal. For this, you need a saddle. This is quite a problem for some, because you cannot craft a saddle. You only find them in chests found in caves. If you don't have a saddle, I recommend you find it first, otherwise, you're wasting valuable time with useless taming.
To lead your horse without a saddle, you need a lead. Here, beginners may encounter a problem. To craft a lead, you need rope (string) and a slimeball. You get rope by killing spiders, while you'll get slimeballs by defeating slimes (green jumping blocks). These creatures appear only in swamps–depending on the moon–or the lowest 40 layers of your world. You'll probably notice that getting the right tools requires much work.
Once you've obtained saddles and leads, it's time to breed. Give horses golden apples or golden roots, and "love mode" will be activated. If you have two horses in this state it, won't take long before a foal is born. This colt will be taller, jump higher or have more health points than his parents and eventually, will be faster. The foal is not tame at birth, despite both parents being in your possession. You'll have to wait until it is mature (about 20 minutes) to tame. If you don't want to wait long, you can speed up the growth process by feeding the foal.
Besides regular horses, you have some other equines in Minecraft. You have the foal, which eventually grows into an adult horse, and the donkeys, which you can pack with chests. If you breed a donkey with a horse, you get a mule, which can also be used for transporting goods. And of course, Minecraft would not be Minecraft if there were no zombie horses. These cannot be tamed, similar to the last ones on this list, the skeleton horse. The zombie and skeleton horse are probably introduced to serve as enemies.
To ride a horse, stand next to it and click the right mouse button. Now, you control the animal as if you're walking. The bottom of the screen displays a bar when you're on the back of your riding horse, which is the jump bar. The longer you hold down the space bar, the higher the jump. To step off a horse, press the left Shift button.
Horses for everyone
The 1.6 update adds more than just horses, like new coal and clay blocks for materials, but adding another mode of transportation is great for players. It will be interesting to see how players experiment with the new update and add horses into their cities.
[Image Credit: Minecraftwiki.net]
For even more Minecraft, check out our comparison of Minecraft Realms vs Minecraft Servers.