|Drops||End Portal Exit and Dragon Egg|
|Experience||Enough to get you to level 78|
The Ender Dragon is the first official boss mob to appear in Minecraft (with the second being the Wither). It only naturally spawns in The End. This mob uses the dragon model Notch created, but utilizes a texture more reminiscent of an Enderman, being black and scaly with purple eyes. It is widely acknowledged as the main antagonist of the game.
The Ender Dragon is a large, black dragon with purple eyes and 4 big, black paws with 3 toes on each one. It is by far the largest and most detailed mob in the game, about 20 times as long as a pig, and is made up 61 cuboids, more than any other model. It has a few light gray features, such as the wings and various other parts of its body. Similar to Endermen and Spiders, the Ender Dragon's eyes are visible through darkness, so you can see it coming from anywhere in the End. (Note its eyes won't glow if you have consumed the potion of night vision, instead its whole body will glow light gray.) The black parts of its body (which is nearly all of its body) is a top layer, however there is a gray bottom layer with the eyes in the front. This is revealed in the "dragon" folder in the mob skin files.
The Ender Dragon will destroy any block it comes into contact with, except Obsidian, End Stone, and Bedrock. Instead of destroying them, the Ender Dragon passes through them. When hit, an Ender Dragon makes roaring, growling and snarling noises. The flapping of its wings can also be heard as the dragon moves.
The Ender Dragon has a purple boss bar that appears at the top of the player's screen. This bar indicates the remaining health of the resident Ender Dragon. Each End dimension houses a single Ender Dragon whose health is periodically charged by nearby Ender Crystals. Destroying an Ender Crystal while the Ender Dragon is being charged by it (indicated by a series of circles appearing between the Ender Crystal and the Ender Dragon) will cause the Ender Dragon to take additional damage instead of being healed.
Once killed, the Ender Dragon will appear to have beams of light spontaneously erupting from its body. It will then explode, dropping enough experience to bring a player from no experience to level 78 (12000 - 10 drops of 1000 experience, one drop of 2000 experience).
It will also spawn an exit portal with a Dragon Egg on top. Entering the portal will activate a text cutscene that lasts for an average of 8 minutes, 30 seconds. After the cutscene, the player will be teleported to their spawn point/Bed in The Overworld. The cutscene can be skipped by pressing the Esc key, and will instantly send the player to their spawn point/Bed in The Overworld. The player may return to the End after defeating the Ender Dragon, however there will be no new dragon.
When spawned in the Overworld, using the new /summon command, as of snapshot 13w38c, the Ender Dragon exhibits the same behavior when killed, however, the End Portal spawned leads to the End, where another Ender Dragon still resides, and no text cutscene plays. Also, it seems to orbit around the origin (0 x 0) when not attacking a player.
The Ender Dragon will only attack the player, however it can attack an Enderman causing it to turn hostile towards the Ender Dragon, chase after it, and attack it, akin to when it is attacked by a player.
On both the Xbox 360 and the PlayStation 3 Editions, the Ender Dragon's behavior is slightly different. While flying, the Ender Dragon fires projectiles at the player. After flying for approximately 30 seconds, the Ender Dragon will come down and hover over the unfinished bedrock portal, and remain there for another 30 seconds. The Ender Dragon will spew out "Ender acid" on nearby players, which deals damage. Players may continually strike it with a weapon at this time. The Ender Dragon also fights Endermen during this time, implying the reason for returning to the "nest" is to stop the growing clusters of Endermen from stealing the egg.
The Ender Dragon's most common strategy is to attempt to splat the character. It creates a big crater when landing. The Ender Dragon can also be healed by Ender Crystals as mentioned before and will not be damaged by water, fire, or lava, unlike the Endermen
The most common and easiest strategy to defeat the Ender Dragon is to destroy all of the Ender Crystals before attempting to fight the Ender Dragon, as any damage done to the dragon can be quickly undone by the crystals.
After attacking, the Ender Dragon will get a knockback. Make usage of this to run back. It's recommended using the bow to damage the Ender Dragon from really long distances, because it will get a knockback every time it attempts to fly to attack you.
When the Ender Dragon charges the player, it is directly facing the player. This gives the player a good chance of attacking its head to deal the most damage; attacks that hit any other part of its body cause only one-quarter (plus one point) of their normal damage. But if the player decides to attack it, he/she will have less time to try to avoid its attack. The impact of the Ender Dragon's body and wings cause damage to the player, as well as knockback. The highest armor and weapons (preferably all enchanted) are recommended. Because of the Ender Dragon's speed and flight, projectiles are favored over melee approaches. The Ender Dragon's immense health and evasive nature require a large ammunition stockpile. At least 2 full stacks of arrows are recommended since most will miss.
Lava is useless, as it is immune to fire damage. Water is also useless, as it will take no damage from water and will destroy the block; however, it can be used to make a "safe zone" which Endermen will teleport out of. Knockback enchantments are useless unless the enchantment is on grade 8 or higher (this is possible in SMP with modifications). Snowballs have the potential to stun-lock an Ender Dragon as its recovery time is slower than the firing rate of snowballs. Due to a quirk of how it reduces damage taken, snowballs and other projectiles, such as Ender Pearls and Eggs, that normally cause no damage to entities will deal one point (1 ()) of damage to the Ender Dragon. Beds, which explode in the End, can be detonated when the Ender Dragon is nearby, causing considerable damage to it. Snow and iron golems are some what ineffective and rarely attack the dragon if at all.
Negative splash potions do not seem to affect the Ender Dragon. The potion hits and detonates as per normal, but the dragon does not flash red like when hurt and no apparent effect is seen on it. (Tested in SSP, and with Splash Potions of Poison, Instant Harming, Slowness and Weakness.)
To avoid fighting the Endermen, do not look at them with your crosshair. Alternatively equip a pumpkin in the head gear slot which covers up your cross hair allowing you to look where ever you want. This strategy's downfall is that it obstructs your vision making it hard to keep an eye on the dragon. Invisibility will also prevent aggression by Endermen. However, since you have to remove your armor in order for invisibility to be effective, and the Ender Dragon itself ignores invisibility, this is a dangerous strategy. A large force of snow golems can serve as a distraction for the surrounding endermen: the sheer amount of snowballs fired at them will make them teleport constantly, lessening their threat potential. The Ender Dragon may kill or knock back many of them, so a large army and replacement golems are recommended if this strategy is used. Iron golems can also be used in the same way, and as a bonus actually kill endermen instead of making them teleport; however, they are much more expensive and hard to replace if knocked back or killed.
In the TU9 Update, the Ender Dragon spits out "Ender Acid". The Ender Acid is purple, much like the particles around the Enderman. They also fire a type of Acid Ball similar to Ghasts, Blazes and Fire Charges, but with a more purple texture, which cannot be deflected. Like the PC version, they can also destroy/grief blocks placed by the player.
Also, instead of the portal being spawned underneath the Ender Dragon's death, it is spawned in the middle of the island as soon as you enter the End. However until the Ender Dragon is defeated, it will remain deactivated, and the Dragon Egg will not be on its podium. Until it has been killed, this is used by the Ender Dragon as a nest, where it will hover over it and attack the player with "ender acid".
One final difference between the Xbox/PS3 and PC versions is that some of the Obsidian Pillars have iron bars surrounding the crystal. This prevents the player from shooting it from a distance with a bow, ensuring the player has to climb some of the Pillars.