Netherrack is one of the less useful blocks in vanilla Minecraft. Sure, it can sustain a fire for eternity, and it is arguably the most abundant block in the game, but beyond that it is rather useless. The Betterrack mod by VGDT implements a number of useful features focused around netherrack.
A total of five new blocks are added to the game with Betterrack. The following three are the building blocks for the recipes in the mod, and become sequentially more durable as placed (decorative) blocks:
Hardened Netherrack, crafted from nine netherrack pieces;
Durable Netherrack, crafted from nine hardened netherrack pieces;
Reinforced Netherrack, crafted from nine durable netherrack pieces.
Two new machine blocks are added as well. The first is the Netherrack Grinder, which is used to create Nether Powder. It is fueled by coal and grinds one hardened netherrack into one netherrack powder. Netherrack Grinders are crafted using flint and durable netherrack:
The second machine is the Netherrack Furnace. This furnace uses nether powder as fuel and smelts items at quadruple the rate of a standard furnace. It is also crafted using durable netherrack:
Each tier of netherrack can also be used to craft new tools. These tools become successively more powerful and durable with each tier.
Hardened netherrack is used in the same way as other materials for tool crafting – one to two sticks and one to three pieces in the same positions. Durable and reinforced netherrack, on the other hand, are crafted using Nether Bricks:
Since netherrack tools are crafted with materials found in the underworld, they cannot be enchanted.
How to install Betterrack for Minecraft 1.7.2
Download and install Minecraft Forge mod loader
Download the latest version of Betterrack.
Hold Windows key and press R to open the Run… dialog, or go to Start > Run.
Enter %appdata% and navigate to your .minecraft/mods folder.
Drag and drop the .zip file downloaded in step 2 into this folder.
This mod turns netherrack into an extremely useful material. Whether you are using it for tools, building, or smelting, there is finally a reason to actually mine this block. What other uses for netherrack do you think would be good to implement? Leave your ideas in the comments below.