Download and install an experimental Minecraft snapshot

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Want to test out the latest Minecraft gameplay features and mechanics? Here is a step by step guide on how to download and play an experimental snapshot of Minecraft on the Java Edition.

Minecraft receives a massive game-changing update every year, and before they are released, Mojang Studios takes several opportunities to test them. This means that you and I and all other Minecraft Java Edition players have the opportunity to test out brand new Minecraft mechanics before they are introduced to the main game. The very first iteration of a new Minecraft update is the Experimental Snapshot, so let’s see how you can access it on your PC version of Minecraft.

How to Download and Play Minecraft Experimental Snapshot

Experimental snapshots, as early builds of a new Minecraft update, should be intentionally downloaded from and installed into Minecraft folders. It’s probably because they can be finicky, and if your world is lost or corrupted, you can’t complain to Mojang because you knew the risks!

So, to start the process, you must first locate the desired snapshot download on the Minecraft website. It’s not always easy on its own, but they will usually be announced in the Latest News section on For the purposes of this article, we’ll be using 1.19 Deep Dark Experimental Snapshot 1, which can be found in the “A Very Scary Snapshot” news article from February 2022.

How to install an experimental snapshot step by step

  • When you find it, download the .zip file
  • Unzip the file and move its contents to the .minecraft/versions folder on your PC
  • Start Minecraft Launcher (if you already had it open, you’ll need to close and restart it)
  • Go to the Installations tab
  • Click on New Installation
  • Name it and choose the desired snapshot, which should now appear in the drop-down menu
New facility
  • Click Create
  • The installation now appears in the list, click on Play

And There you go ! You will be able to create a whole new Minecraft world with all the new mechanics of your chosen snapshot.

How to locate your Minecraft/versions folder

If you are unable to locate the Minecraft App Data folder on your computer, follow the steps below.

On Windows PCs

  • Type Win + R (or launch the Run application from the beginning)
  • Type %appdata%.minecraft
  • press OK

On Mac OS X

  • From the Finder’s Go menu, select “Go to Folder”
  • Enter ~/Library/Application Support/minecraft

You can also access the folder through Minecraft on any PC

  • Open Minecraft Launcher
  • Click Play
  • Select options”
  • Go to “Resource Packs” and click “Open Pack Folder”
  • This will take you to .minecraft/resourcepacks, just go back to a folder and you can see /versions
Open Pack Folder

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