How do I download and play the Minecraft 1.18.3 experimental snapshot?

Minecraft 1.18 is right around the corner, bringing sprawling mountain ranges, brand new biomes and spectacular new terrain generation. The update is slated to release late 2021, but who wants to wait that long? The Minecraft 1.18.3 experimental snapshot can give you all the features (with none of the stability…) – find out how to download it and play with this guide!

Which platforms can I play the 1.18.3 experimental snapshot on?

Bad news for… well, anyone not playing on PC, as the 1.18.3 experimental snapshot is currently only available for Java Edition. If you’re a Minecraft Bedrock player, you’ll have to make do with the 1.18.1 snapshot, which is available as a toggle in the “Game” menu when creating a new world.

How do I download and install the experimental snapshot?

If you’re familiar with Minecraft snapshots, you’d be forgiven for wondering why you need this guide at all – past snapshots are easily accessible in the Minecraft launcher, in a little dropdown menu where you select the version you want to play. This time however, it’s not so easy – the only snapshot you’ll find there is 1.17. So, what do you need to do?

  1. The first step to installing the experimental snapshot is to, well, download the experimental snapshot. To do so, head over to this article on and scroll down until you see “Download this zip file”. Alternatively, just click here to access the download directly!
  2. Next, you’re going to want to locate the “versions” folder in your Minecraft files. This just requires a bit of digging through Windows explorer (or Finder, if you’re on MacOS). Here’s how to find it easily:

Windows: Hold Windows+R to open Run, and type


MacOS: Open Finder and hold Shift+Command+G to open Spotlight search, and type

~/Library/Application Support/minecraft./versions

Make sure you keep the versions window open, you’ll need it later!

  1. Now that you’ve got the versions directory, go to where you downloaded the experimental snapshot and extract the files.
  2. Next, take that newly extracted folder, and copy it into the versions folder you’ve got open.

Now, how do you install it in the launcher?

  1. In the Minecraft Launcher, go the “Installations” tab, and click on “New installation“.
download play Minecraft 1.18.2 experimental snapshot
  1. In the window that pops up, change the version from 1.17.1 to “pending 1.18_experimental-snapshot-3”, and hit save.

That’s it! All that’s left to do is head back to the main screen, change the version dropdown to your newly created snapshot, and quite literally experience a whole new world in Minecraft!

READ NEXT: Where are Minecraft screenshots saved?

About the author

Fraser Campbell

Fraser co-created a website called when he was still at school, and is now an undergraduate at the University of Plymouth.

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