If you’re tired of playing Minecraft on the same old setting and want to spice things up, you might consider installing shaders in Minecraft 1.18.
Shaders, like those found in games like Fortnite, make your Minecraft world look completely different than what you’re used to seeing by adding new color filters and shading, allowing the whole experience to look more realistic.
You might have heard of shaders before but don’t know how to install them, or where to find shaders for Minecraft 1.18 – but luckily this article will give you all the information you need!
Choosing Your Shader Pack
There are a lot of shader packs to choose from and you’ll probably find them on websites like GLSL Shaders, Minecraft Forum, or PlanetMinecraft (just to name a few).
Each site has its own method for rating shader packs, but you’ll want to look for one that is relatively up-to-date (1.12 and above) and has an average rating of 3 stars or higher. If a shader pack gets terrible ratings, there may be something wrong with it – so don’t risk it! Also, make sure that it supports your video card if you have any doubts.
There are a few things you should keep in mind when it comes to selecting one. The easiest way is by searching for [name of shader pack] PC on YouTube (or by using something like ShaderBoards).
There will be at least one video that shows you how to download and use it, but if not – Google will help you out with some searches such as [name of shader pack] pc download or [name of shader pack] setup.
You’ll want to pay attention to information about installation, system requirements, and maybe even an FPS test once you have everything installed.
Downloading the files
To get started, you’ll need to download a .jar file that contains all of Forge’s core functionality. The Forge downloads page contains links to all of them, and it will be updated with new releases as they become available.
In your web browser, simply click on whichever version of Forge is compatible with your system (e.g., Windows users can download it from here).
Then, save the file into a convenient location—such as your desktop or downloads folder—and run it by double-clicking its icon; if you’re using Windows 7 or later, you may have to run it with administrative privileges enabled.
Do note that these downloads only contain all of Forge’s core functionality; add-ons are handled through an entirely separate process.
Installing The Optifine Mod
The initial step is downloading and installing Optifine, which is a third-party mod that lets you do things like run at high frame rates, turn on Anti-Aliasing, and play with a wider range of resolutions.
Downloading and installing Optifine is pretty easy: Just search for it on CurseForge or click here, download it, double-click it and then launch Minecraft once you’ve installed it. If you don’t see an OptiFine button in your title screen’s bottom right corner, close out of Minecraft, relaunch, and check again!
There’s one other thing you’ll need: a shader pack. You’re probably familiar with shaders because they let you run at high frame rates and increased visual fidelity, but a shader pack is what lets Optifine load those features into your game without any issues (without them, it can be pretty unstable).
To get started, head over to Shader Packs Forge, which hosts loads of different packs like Improved Vanilla Textures (which adds more detailed textures) and Smooth Realistic (which turns everything into smooth and realistic shades of grey). There are tons of packs to choose from!
Installing The Resource Packs
To use a shader pack, you’ll need to add it as a resource pack. In order to do that, press F1 (or Fn+F1 for Mac users) on your keyboard and then click on Options. A window should pop up with some different tabs along the top of it, so look for Resource Packs under Other Settings and click on it.
Now that you’re on that page, click on Open Resource Packs Folder, and a new window will pop up. This is where you’ll place all of your resource packs, so go ahead and open it now by pressing Ok on your keyboard or by clicking OK with your mouse.
Setting Up The ShaderMod Client
Shader Mod is a small Java-based application, so you’ll need to make sure you have java installed first, before downloading it.
To download ShaderMod Client simply head over to their site and follow their instructions on how to get started with Java on your PC/Mac, as well as how to use it with your browser of choice.
The website should provide enough information for you so that installing it won’t be an issue. You should also know that ShaderMod doesn’t support all Minecraft versions, specifically; 1.5 (no longer supported), 1.6 – 1.12.
When using Shader Mod for servers instead of clients there will be additional steps involved and so keep that in mind if you’re running a server instead of just playing from home!
Adding a custom resource pack
Some custom resource packs require you to add a few of your own files. For example, the GLSL Shaders mod requires that you add a small program file (.exe) along with some shader code (.fsh/.vsh) into your Minecraft’s bin folder so it knows how to apply those shaders on certain blocks when rendering them.
You could skip writing these files yourself and use an external app like Shader Forge or OmegaCam, but adding these resources manually is a great way for newcomers to learn more about how PC games work under the hood.