Jeb has stated that he will remove emerald ore. This is because he has received too many complaints that it is too rare. So it is currency only now. How ever the ore will still be available in creative mode.
Joking aside, I actually liked this feature, because I was able to find emerald ore after a while, and it gave me that feeling I've not had since I started playing and diamond was still hard to find. This is as bad as when Jeb removed the cauldron brewing system.
2Latee is confused. He thinks the actual cauldron block has been removed. No, it hasn't. It's a leftover from what GorgeousTaylor is talking about.
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I know emeralds are supposed to be rare, and might be impossible to find if someone does not know what biome and levels they are in. But I set out to find some in extreme hills, and so far just in caves around an abandoned mine I found 21 emeralds. Actually I might have found 4 more, but I think I broke them with a stone pickaxe. Seems a shame to do away with something because people don't take the time to find out where to find them.
Pfft. I tried to warn you all in at least 5 different threads about your misconceptions of emerald ore. It was only in existence to give history/lore to the existence of the emeralds. The primary way to obtain emeralds was always intended to be via trading. But too many people just didn't get it, and complained so much that it had to be removed from the game because they perceived emeralds as rare. Now we have a currency which has no background or grounding in the world because of QQ. Still.. its removal does not really effect me because just as before I will obtain emeralds in the intended way. From trade.