This article is about the craftable map. A map is an item used to view explored terrain. In the New Nintendo 3DS Edition, the map is not an item, and custom map minecraft instead always displayed on the Touch Screen. When you first create a map, it is blank.
Maps crafted without a compass will not show location markers. Markers can be added later by combining the map with a compass on an anvil or crafting table. This variation is called an «empty map». Empty maps can be found in 7.
In Bedrock Edition they can be found in 10. In the Legacy Console Edition, the player spawns with a map in their inventory upon creating a new world. Maps also contain the player’s current coordinates at the top. In Bedrock Edition, the player can enable the option to spawn with a map when creating a new world. 11 emeralds, as their only tier 3 trade.
Crafting a map creates an empty map. This map can then be adjusted to different zoom levels. After conversion to a drawn map item, it starts to draw a top-down view of the player’s surroundings, with North pointing to the top of the map. A pointed oval pointer indicates the player’s position on the map, and will move in real time as the player moves across the terrain shown on the map. To record the world on a map, that specific map item must be held in the player’s hands while the player moves around the world. The world will be recorded as-is during exploration, meaning that if the world is modified, a player must revisit the area while holding the map in order to update the map’s view.
A map’s parameters are fixed when the map is first used, meaning the map does not remain centered on the player—the drawing snaps to a pre-set grid. Other players will only be displayed on the map if they have a map in their inventory cloned from the one being looked at. When placing a map into an item frame, the map will display with a green pointer shown at the location of the item frame. This is to help the player see where they are in relation to the area that the map is showing. When the player leaves the area shown on a specific map, the player pointer will transform into a white dot on that map. The marker will shrink to a smaller white dot if the player is very far from the map’s center: the radius is 320 blocks per level of zoom. The dot will move along the edge of the map to show the relative location of the player.
While maps in the Nether work, all that will be shown is a red and gray pattern. Additionally, the player pointer rapidly spins and is not a good indicator of direction. A player can make a large piece of pixel art facing upwards, center a map on it, and place that map in an item frame to create a custom picture. Each pixel of a map corresponds to a variably-sized area of the world, and is always aligned to X and Z coordinates that are multiples of 8.
Generally, the color of a map pixel matches the color of the most common opaque block in the corresponding area, as seen from the sky. Grass, foliage and water colors that are biome-dependent are represented accurately on a map. Maps will also show ground up to about 15 blocks below the surface of the water in oceans as slightly lighter blue, so you can see where the ground rises. This is not true with land above water.