To customize the looks of Minecraft, you can download and install the best texture packs, or if you are playing the Java Edition of the game, shaders. Shaders change the looks of the entire game by modifying the lighting and various textures, adding fog, realistic natural features, etc. They are super popular in the community as they make the game look so much cleaner and more appealing. In this article, we cover the best Minecraft 1.20 shaders you should definitely check out.
List of Best Minecraft 1.20 Shaders
Note: The following shaders are all free and not arranged in any particular order. Which one is your favorite? Tell us in the comments below!
1. BSL Shaders
One of the most popular and frequently used shaders in Minecraft 1.20 and previous versions are BSL shaders. This shader offers a ton of customization and optimization options. It adds gorgeous and realistic clouds, real-time shadows, and it modifies the whole atmosphere of your world. You can feel and see the mist and air particles in your world, making Minecraft more life-like.
Water in this shader is rather transparent and sometimes even hard to see when you’re far away. However, the sunrise is quite spectacular as the sun shines bright and spreads the warm colors across the entire landscape.
During the night, this shader stands out even more in Minecraft 1.20. The world becomes fairly dark and even a little terrifying, as you can barely see your surroundings. Light blocks create a beautiful and subtle ambient light that slowly blends with the darkness. Moreover, dark fog further limits your field of vision, which will make you believe Minecraft is a horror game.
Download BSL Shaders
2. Complementary Shaders
Also a very popular shader, Complementary shaders aim to make the overall game perfect with as few issues as possible. It creates much clearer air than BSL shaders but also quite a thick fog. This shader is fairly bright and doesn’t include such realistic and prominent clouds, which could be appealing to some.
There are plenty of detailed settings you can adjust to make this shader suit you and your needs better. From settling like the distance at which fog starts to appear, light shafts, shadows, and even block outlines to the speed of the waving plants, the existence of stars during sunset/ sunrise, bloom and so much more.
This shader looks absolutely amazing during the night as well. It’s not overly dark and moody, but more pleasant to the eyes. The fog and clouds are not extreme and the ambient light created naturally draws your attention.
Download Complementary Shaders
3. SEUS Shaders
The next entry on our list is a shader whose goal is realism in Minecraft 1.20. With real-time naturalistic shadows, stunningly clear water texture, and crops and plants swaying in the wind, SEUS (Sonic Ether’s Unbelievable Shaders) is breathtaking. Every light source block provides unique ambient light with different properties, and it affects the environment in various ways. The sky is calm and clear, with convincing clouds that still keep the blocky shape.
Similarly to BSL, the SEUS shaders drastically change the scenery at night. When the darkness sets over the landscape, it overtakes it and barely lets any light through. It becomes far more different than the vanilla Minecraft and also challenging to traverse. The sky contains a variety of colors and stars are glowing bright, making the experience unforgettable.
If you’re looking for a shader that’s going to completely overhaul the Minecraft 1.20 graphics and provide you with an intense nighttime survival experience with an adrenalin rush, then this shader may just be for you.
Download SEUS Shaders
4. Chocapic13 Shaders
Chocapic13 is certainly one of the best looking shaders for Minecraft 1.20. It also strives for highly realistic lighting and visuals, and it maintains a decent quality even on the lowest preset. The clouds are realistic and the water is easily visible even when you are at a great distance. The sun is not too bright and the fog is not extreme and is easily adjustable in the settings.
Other features of this awesome shader include a dynamic time of day cycle, shadows with variable penumbra size, volumetric clouds, water shader with water fog, reflections, custom Nether and End, wavy plants and so much more.
During the night, this shader darkens the world quite a bit, making it somewhat scary. Moreover, if you’re a fan of dark and spooky nights, the Chocapic13 shader’s fog goes hand in hand with rain and the ominous red clouds, which could altogether make for the perfect horror atmosphere.
Download Chocapic13 Shaders
5. Sildurs Vibrant Shaders
As the name suggests, Sildurs Vibrant shader is rather vibrant and gorgeous. It creates a highly truthful sky as the lighting interacts naturally with the clouds changing their color. Furthermore, the fog gets fairly dense at a great distance, so you’re forced to focus on the beauty of the nearby lit landscape.
Every block the light reaches stands out and allows for great contrasting building styles. Other features include reflections, bloom, ambient occlusion, and more.
This shader takes a different turn in the nighttime, as it transforms the scenery into a magical and fantasy environment, thanks to the fog that darkens and desaturates the colors. Realistic clouds allow bright stars to stand out even more in the dark sky.
Download Sildurs Vibrant Shaders
6. MakeUp Ultra Fast Shaders
The MakeUp Ultra Fast shaders in Minecraft 1.20 focus on providing players with as beautiful graphics and effects as possible without any performance issues. It changes the sky color a lot and desaturates it. The clouds, the sun, and the moon all have an anti-aliasing effect, so they blend gradually with the sky. There are no extreme shadows or light visuals, which is rather pleasant to experience.
In this shader, you can change and modify all the features to make your own shader design that you will enjoy. Some of those features include depth of field, improved ambient occlusion, motion blur, waving plants, and more. Even though the MakeUp Ultra Fast shader doesn’t change the game drastically, it is a great option for Minecraft 1.20 players with a low-end PC.
During the night, it becomes fairly dark and spooky. Unlike previously mentioned shaders, the stars and clouds are not quite outstanding here, as they mix with the sky.
Download MakeUp Ultra Fast Shaders
7. YoFPS Shaders
The YoFPS shader is a fork of the popular Chocapic13 shader that focuses on performance. If you have a low-end PC, this shader is a great option for you and will run the Minecraft 1.20 update quite well. This shader is well-optimized and provides you with beautiful aesthetics such as waving plants, water texture, and truthful sky.
Moreover, the YoFPS shader creates a realistic and gorgeous atmosphere of your world, as it changes the colors and also adds a dense fog that makes the environment quite moody. This is for sure one of the best Minecraft 1.20 shaders for low-end PCs you should try.
During the night, this shader keeps the world rather bright and makes it look like dawn. Therefore, the lights don’t stand out too much, which can be a great opportunity for players to keep their builds safe but also not overly bright. The fog also adds a blue hue to all your blocks in-game, making the landscape rather convincing and beautiful.
Download YoFPS Shaders
8. Rethinking Voxels Shaders
Rethinking Voxels shader is a relatively new shader, and it’s getting increasingly popular for a good reason. It creates absolutely stunning visuals, thanks to its voxel-based lighting system. The light can travel through the transparent blocks and also cast sharp shadows.
One of the coolest features of this shader is the colored light. The light block emits the light of the same color. For example, a redstone torch will emit red light, similar to RTX in Bedrock Edition, instead of the default one in vanilla Minecraft. Also, an interesting fact about the cool Rethinking Voxels Shader is the clouds, their shape has not been modified. They are still blocky Minecraft clouds that have been prettified and look very cute.
With this Minecraft 1.20 shader, nights are fairly dark and it allows the light to reach and stand out a lot. Moreover, the light bounces off blocks and creates prominent reflections. If you are into realistic and improved volumetric lighting, go download this shader.
Download Rethinking Voxels Shaders
9. Vanilla Plus Shaders
As the name suggests, the Vanilla Plus shader aims to keep the vanilla Minecraft feel but also improve on it. It ever so slightly changes most vanilla features and makes them more pleasant. Some of the features this shader includes are dynamic shadows, volumetric clouds, motion blur, temporal anti-aliasing, and many more.
Vanilla Plus shader adds atmosphere and mist particles, as well as desaturates the sky and makes it easier to look at. During the nighttime, the fog can change color to represent real-world conditions well. Overall, the terrain doesn’t get too dark and lights don’t pop up so much. I like how cool my cherry grove biome looks when using this shader.
If you’d like to experiment with shaders, but are uncertain which one to choose, you can start with the Vanilla Plus shaders. It’s a gradual step up from vanilla Minecraft and won’t feel burdensome.
Download Vanilla Plus Shaders
10. Nostalgia Shaders
Nostalgia shaders have been around for a while, and it’s meant to loosely replicate the look and feel of “first-gen” shaderpacks while also adding new features and visual effects like volumetric fog. Other features it provides are dynamic shadows, waving plants, custom skybox and lighting colors and so much more.
This shader enhances vanilla clouds and water, while it creates a dense volumetric fog. It also creates quite dark shadows which allows for blocks exposed to sunlight to stand out even further. This is a rather moody and beautiful shader that doesn’t stray too far from vanilla.
In the night, this shader gets even more moody, as the fog color changes drastically. This creates fairly gorgeous sceneries and lets light shine bright and draw attention.
Download Nostalgia Shaders
How to Install Shaders in Minecraft 1.20
Installing and using shaders in Minecraft 1.20 is rather straightforward. First, you will need to download and install OptiFine or Iris. Then, you can move the downloaded zip file into the shaderpacks folder in the main Minecraft folder on your computer. That is basically it.
To enable the shader in your world, pause the game, select video settings, and then shaders. Here, you will be able to find the zip files, and clicking on them will enable the required shader. When you are done using the shader, you can go back to the shaders options and select OFF at the top.
Frequently Asked Questions
That completely depends on your personal preference. If you want a great shader for your low-end PC, you should definitely try YoFPS. Moreover, if you want a unique shader, then try Rethinking Voxels. But if you’re looking for an overall functional and great shader, try BSL or Complementary. Our favorites are Chocapic13 and MakeUp Ultra Fast shaders.