The Best Way to Prune Any Minecraft World in 2023

In this guide, we'll cover the best way to prune your world in today's modern Minecraft landscape.

First we'll cover why pruning is useful, then which tool is the best, and lastly how to use it effectively.


Table of Contents:

The Need For Pruning

No one doubts the extreme usefulness of world pruning.

Pruning can be used to:

  • Breathe new life into heavily-explored worlds
  • Improve performance and fix issues
  • Reduce file size prior to sharing
  • Remove common eye-sores or griefer attacks

New Adventures

Every time Minecraft releases an update, the community clamors to experience the new features within their current worlds.

If you've already explored your world, then you may have to travel very far to start seeing the new terrain, let alone somewhere convenient!

By pruning terrain and letting Minecraft regenerate it, you can experience all the new features conveniently next to your base.

Improved Performance

An oversized world can lead to lag and can sometimes leave your world unplayable.

Server-owners tell us large worlds can crash often which leads to data loss, all because too many chunks were visited.

This is especially bad for Bedrock edition which uses LevelDB to store data. When a crash occurs during LevelDB processing, the database can become corrupted.

Servers run a repairing step to reset all key organization which usually recovers most of the data, but at the cost of a completely non-compacted world. This means your world moves at a snails pace!

Thankfully, the Universal Minecraft Tool's Pruner fixes this by optimizing your worlds, ensuring they run at top speed again.

Map Maker's Best Friend

Most map makers will prune their worlds before sharing or selling.

It reduces file size, improves performance, and limits the parts of their worlds they want to share while keeping other areas private.

Pruning is an essential step before releasing your hard-work unto the community!

Current Pruning Tools

At the time of writing this guide, the available tools for pruning are few and far between.

Let's discuss which one is right for both the average and hardcore Minecrafter alike.

Every good pruning tool in 2023 should:

  • Support all editions of Minecraft
  • Have a good chunk selection process
  • Be able to prune large worlds (this is the point of pruning, isn't it?)
  • Not require a beefy computer
  • Work on a backup (just in case)
  • Not harm world performance

These are all reasonable things to expect from a pruner. You might think that every pruning tool already has at least these as a baseline, right?

Believe it or not, only the Universal Minecraft Tool checks all of these boxes!

Let's dive deeper:

The 3D Tools...

It's honestly questionable to include 3D terrain editors in this discussion at all.

Pruning should be quick! Select. Prune. Done!

3D editors can suffer from a slow chunk selection process, especially for large or uniquely shaped areas. Plus there are performance concerns when trying to view large worlds. Or even small worlds on a low-end computer. If the 3D rendering isn't optimized well, this could be a dealbreaker.

They may be great tools, but it's honest to say that 3D is not the best environment for strictly world pruning.

We've also heard from the community that tools like Amulet can leave behind junk data and don't perform this important LevelDB optimization step mentioned earlier.


Given these reasons, it's hard to recommend 3D editors as a reasonable solution for most real-world pruning tasks.

The 2D Tools...

2D tools can make selecting chunks faster and easier. However, at the time of writing this guide, none of them support more than one edition.

Java edition only pruners:

MCA Selector is a popular pruning tool for Java edition. It's older which is why it's so widespread, but it doesn't check all the boxes mentioned earlier of a good pruning tool in 2023.

Firstly, when zoomed out (not even that far) you can only select big 512x512 square areas at a time. This makes complex shape selection out of the question. You have to zoom way in if you want to select anything on the chunk-level.

Second, it uses a ton of RAM. In fact, a YouTuber in a tutorial video linked by the official MCA Selector website recommended only selecting around 5,000 chunks at a time since anything higher would crash his computer. He also had to type coordinates and do multiple passes, limiting the range by entering comparison logic against NBT tags within the chunk. What a mess!

Third, it doesn't operate on a backup of the world. You have to make a copy of the world yourself to protect against mistakes.

Bedrock edition only pruners:

At the time of writing this guide, there is only one that comes to mind, and it doesn't have a 2D world view.

It's a CLI program, which means everything is done in a command-line window. It was later given a GUI to make it more usable, but you still had to type out coordinates without seeing the world, all to only be able to select a single rectangular area and that's it. Incredibly limiting and not fit for most pruning tasks.

Legacy Console edition pruners:

There are none! Only the Universal Minecraft Tool supports Legacy Console editions like Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, and Wii U.

The Right Solution

The Universal Minecraft Tool is equipped with hands-down the most user-friendly, flexible, performant, and safe pruner ever developed.

The Universal Minecraft Tool:

  • Supports all editions. Java, Bedrock, and even Legacy Console!
  • Can create complex selections of any shape on a large-scale quickly.
  • Stays low on RAM usage.
  • Deletes unlimited chunks in a single pass.
  • Has an optimizer to improve performance.
  • Works on a copy of your world automatically.

Not to mention it also comes with an NBT Editor and Converter too.

One glance at the Universal Minecraft Tool's Pruner and you'll quickly agree, it's the best way to prune any Minecraft world.

Plus, it's fun to use!

How to Prune Any Minecraft World

Step 1: Open the World

When you first open the Pruner app in the Universal Minecraft Tool, you'll be asked to select a world.

Follow this guide to Open Any World in the Universal Minecraft Tool

Step 2: The Interface

Start by familiarizing yourself with the interface. The Pruner is split into two sections. The selection controls on the left and the 2D world viewer on the right.


At the top of the left sidebar are six selection tools. Using these, we can make complex chunk selections super easily.

Box: Select a rectangular areas of chunks. Left-click and drag to set the position and size.


Circle: Select a circular areas of chunks. Left-click and drag to set the center and radius.


Polygon: Select a polygonal area of chunks in any shape you'd like. Left-click to create new points, right-click to close the polygon early.


Split: Select chunks infinitely in any direction. Left-click and drag to set the position and angle.


Time: Select chunks based on an NBT tag called InhabitedTime. This tracks how long players have spent in each chunk. Originally used for zombie spawn reinforcements, we can hijack it for pruning. (Java and Legacy Console only)


Optimize: Optimize the LevelDB database of your world to clean up deleted keys and improve performance. (Bedrock only)

Step 3: Create Your Selection

Click to select one of the tools. Box, Circle, Polygon, and Split all require you to 'draw' on the 2D world viewer to make your selection. Time requires you to choose between >, =, or < and a numerical value representing ticks to compare against InhabitedTime.

Each time you create a selection, a new layer appears. Their order doesn't matter.


You can also invert your selection by changing to Inverted mode.


Your selected chunks will appear red.

To change the dimension, use the dimension switcher in the 2D world viewer. You can only prune one dimension at a time (whichever dimension you're currently viewing).

Step 4: Prune

When you're happy with your selection, hold the Prune button for 5 seconds.


Depending on the selection layer types and the edition of the world, the chunk deleting could take some time.

If you Abort a pruning job early, the already deleted chunks won't come back, but your selection layers will stay so you can run it again without needing to remake them.

Step 5: Save the World

Unlike other pruning tools, the Universal Minecraft Tool operates on a copy of your world. This means your original world is safe until you decide to manually save the world.

If you made a mistake or changed your mind, you can simply Close the world and your world will be unchanged.

If you're 100% happy with your pruned world, then just click Save to finalize your changes and overwrite the original world.



That's all there is to it!


You can see how easy and stress-free it is to prune a world, no matter where you play, with the Universal Minecraft Tool.

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