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Distant Horizons mod blows past Minecraft's max render distance, pushing viewable terrain out to an unbelievable 512 chunks

 Minecraft character looks out at a view from the top of a mountain.
Minecraft character looks out at a view from the top of a mountain.

There are plenty of mods on CurseForge that will change the way you look at Minecraft. I've spent many years picking and choosing which ones I want to keep so that my world can look as beautiful as possible, and I think I've just found my next download.

Distant Horizons is one of those mods that will change the way you look at Minecraft. On paper, it may not seem like much, but by adding simple terrain past the default view distance in Minecraft, Distant Horizons will improve your performance and allow for longer draw distances.

The demo video for Distant Horizons shows off these stunning views, as well as biome blending and faster geometry rebuilding so your world doesn't look as blocky as it once did. World generator threads can now even be reduced to a number lower than one, which will slow world generation down, making the render distance easier to handle—I know so many people who play Minecraft on old gaming laptops or PCs, so having a mod that is accessible to those who don't have the latest hardware is fantastic.

However, it's important to note that the demo video is slightly out-of-date as it shows the Alpha for 1.6.3, but this mod is now available for recent versions of Minecraft up to 1.20.2, so you won't have to sacrifice too much new content to enjoy what's on offer.

For a more recent look at Distant Horizons, a video from YouTuber AsianHalfSquat shows off what this mod is capable of (thanks, TheGamer). Optifine previously allowed you to run 64-chunk render distances with shaders, but Distant Horizons clearly takes it to the next level with a 512-chunk render distance. However, if the stunning snowy mountain ranges in the distance aren't enough to convince you, then I'd highly recommend checking out some terrain generation mods like Terralith or Tectonic, which make the most of the grand open spaces that you can now enjoy, thanks to Distant Horizons.

I have a decade-long habit of building sprawling cities or blackstone castles on flat-top mountains, so this mod may actually allow me to finally enjoy the beautiful views from my spot in the clouds without having to worry about stuttering framerates. It's also just really cool to see the dramatic landscapes that now run through Minecraft post caves and cliffs update. Plus, if this mod makes finding Woodland Mansions less of a pain, then I will owe Distant Horizons a debt of gratitude.