Minecraft newly expanded Nether biomes

[Update]: The Nether update has been pinned for a June 23, 2020 release date.

Mojang is slowly but surely trying to improve Minecraft's end-game, and what better place to start than the accursed Nether - a region with very little interesting geography or reasons to stick around. As such, I'm happy to say that the latest snapshot (beta) update has not only expanded the amount of biomes found within the Nether, but also added Hoglins as new NPCs to help spice things up a bit.

Perhaps most importantly, at least as far as gameplay is concerned, there is also a new high-level material found only in the Nether - Netherite. This new material can be used to upgrade Diamond equipment into Netherite versions which comes with higher toughness, durability, knockback resistance, and even speed. And if that wasn't enough of a reason to go and upgrade your gear, the new Netherite set also looks quite fetching!

Naturally, getting all of the new gear is not going to be as simple as hopping into the Nether. You will need to go to the lowest depths of the Nether to mine ancient debris, survive your return trip home, and then combine four of the Netherite Scrap you've found with four Gold Ingots to create a Netherite Ingot. Since the process of upgrading your gear to Netherite tier is fraught with lava-based danger, I'm sure you'll be glad to hear that Netherite items will float in lava after you take an accidental dip, so don't worry about having to constantly rebuild them!

The final thing worth mentioning is that the Hoglins, the newly added NPCs, are extremely basic in this beta update. In other words, they don't really do much other than look cute with their big floppy ears. However, according to one of the previews released a while back, once fully finished the Hoglins are likely to play a major part in the new Nether as both potential allies and enemies.

You can read more about the Nether, as well as check out the snapshot yourself, over at the Minecraft website.