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How to Build an Archery Competition Mini-Game in Minecraft

One of the more obvious mini games is an archery competition. They can be set up easily and can be fun for the whole server by holding a competition and finding who’s the best “Robin Hood”.

The targets can be made easily, though the targets themselves can be hard to hit. Some can be as simple as a block or a ring of blocks, while others can be as difficult as a moving target or just a small opening through which the arrow can go.


This is the easiest target to create. A simple block, surrounded by other blocks of a different colour (and so on and so on) will form a perfect target which can act as a qualifier in competitions.

A simple setup of 3 or more of these targets, at different distances, will make for an easy way to trim down the number of players by setting a minimum amount of points they have to hit in order to advance to the next round.

Of course, the whole competition can also be made out of just these targets, but it’ll get boring quite fast.

“Hole in the Wall”

This target requires a little more skill. Players will have to shoot through a 1 block hole (or perhaps larger) and hit a painting on the other side. The painting will fall if it is hit by an arrow, so it’s easy to see if somebody has hit the target.

You can also set up about 5 of these holes next to each other, with small 1 block paintings behind them. Then see who can shoot the paintings off the fastest, but by only using 5 arrows.

Odd Angles

Arrows are affected by gravity, which is perfect to setup our next target.

We’ve created 2 different versions, the first requires you to fire over a fence by standing in a specific area. Where you stand in this area and the angle you use will determine how far and how low the arrow will land. This means the archers will need a good amount of bow skills the hit the target. Make sure you use at least a few blocks through which the archers can see the target, don’t make it an impossible shot.

In the second version we’ve placed a painting 1 block under the surface with a small gap in the ground. It’s only slightly visible from the right angle, but it’s a lot easier to hit it than our first version as the angle you need can be guessed easier.

“The Windmill”

Anybody who has ever played miniature golf will have most likely encountered the windmill challenge. For those of you who have no idea what I’m talking about, the windmill’s blades will rotate and constantly block off the whole through which the ball has to be shot. This means you need to time your shot (or by lucky) in order to get the golf ball into the hole.

This can easily be recreated in minecraft, though obviously without a rotating windmill. A simply system of sticky pistons with a redstone clock will allow you to block the only hole through which the arrow can be fired on a constant rythm.

The archers will have to time their shot perfectly or they’ll miss their target. Assigning points to the amount of used arrows or giving the archest only a few arrows makes this target a nice way to further trim the group and get one step closer to a winner.

Rapid Fire

Rapid fire targets are all about hitting the targets in the shortest amount of time. You could either limit the amount of arrows or let the players fire until they’ve hit every target.

The targets could be anything, though the best targets are usually mobs on fence posts or painting, as they can be shot down easily, which makes it easier to see if you’ve actually hit the target.

Lucky Shot

These targets are often used last and will determine the winner. The target is suposed to be nearly impossible, though it could be done by either skilled or lucky players.

The target could be a simple block placed very far away, perhaps at the bottom of a mountain from which the players have to fire.

It could also be a target which is almost constantly blocked by various pistons, like an extreme version of “the Windmill”.

“Horseback Archers”

The archers will have to enter a minecart, which will either pass the target once or it could keep going round or back and forth to give the archers several chances to hit the target.

Boats could be used, but their movements are affected by the player’s mouse angle, so the water would have to flow down towards the target for the player to have any chance of hitting it.

Saddles pigs could also be used. Players will have to wait patiently for the pig to stop moving before firing their shot, any sudden movement by the pig could ruin the shot and cause the player to lose the competition.