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Minecraft's infamous 'Herobrine' world seed has been found

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Herobrine is a legend in Minecraft, the star of a creepypasta not dissimilar to Slender Man. He was first reported in a 2010 4chan post, according to a history on the Minecraft Wiki, but went largely unnoticed until a streamer named Copeland shared several images "proving" the odd character's existence. Herobrine appears in singleplayer games, so the story went, where he does weird things like carving 2x2 tunnels in the rocks or cutting all the leaves off of trees; he looks identical to the default Minecraft skin, but with white, empty eyes.

Like all good legends, this one had a hook in the real world: Herobrine was reportedly Notch's dead brother, although to be honest I'm not sure whether the idea was that Notch coded his deceased sibling into Minecraft to preserve him for eternity, or if it was his vengeful spirit come back to haunt the game. Not that it really matters, because—spoiler alert—the whole thing was made up. Herobrine doesn't exist (Copeland explained how he got the ball rolling here) and, for the record, Notch never had a brother.

What is real, however, is the Minecraft world in which Herobrine was first seen. Unfortunately, nobody knew exactly which world it was: Specific Minecraft worlds, as we explain here, can be perfectly recreated with "seeds," but if you don't know the seed, you're pretty much out of luck. It is possible to crunch the numbers to discover specific seeds, though: The Minecraft title screen seed was discovered in July 2020, and the Pack.png seed was dug up a few months later. And now, as detailed at Minecraft@Home, the original Herobrine seed has been discovered as well.

The seed was discovered on January 16 by andrew_555 (Kminster), who said on Reddit that it took "probably about 50 hours in total for developing/writing the code back in September" followed by months of occasional debugging, until they "realised there was a wrong leaf in the recreation which had been the problem all along." 

The project page also credits Neil, BoySanic, polymetric & MC (PseudoGravity) as "major contributors."

Here are the details:

  • Seed: 478868574082066804
  • Version: Java Alpha 1.0.16_02
  • Alpha coordinates: X=5.06 Y=71 (72.62 eye pos) Z=-298.54
  • Modern coordinates: X=5.16 Y=71 Z=-298.53
  • Camera angle: RX=93.75 RY=-1.2
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Minecraft Herobrine world images

(Image credit: Mojang)
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Minecraft Herobrine world images

(Image credit: Mojang)
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Minecraft Herobrine world images

(Image credit: Mojang)
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Minecraft Herobrine world images

(Image credit: Mojang)

If you'd like to check out the original Herobrine world for yourself, you'll need to use Minecraft Java Edition with "Historical versions" enabled in the launcher. Select version a1.0.16 and then either edit the save file (that version doesn't support entering seeds) or, more easily, use this prepared world file. That'll generate a fresh version of the Herobrine world, with you standing exactly where you should be. If you run into trouble, or just want to chat about this world (or, I would guess, other interesting places to visit), hit up the Minecraft@Home Discord.

Andy covers the day-to-day happenings in the big, wide world of PC gaming—the stuff we call "news." In his off hours, he wishes he had time to play the 80-hour RPGs and immersive sims he used to love so much.