In the new snapshot mobs avoid walking on railroads unless necessary, which some people complain will allow an unrealistic form of monster defense. Just surround your property with rails, and most monsters will avoid idly wandering in (although they'll still chase you if you get too close).
"Why should rails repel monsters?" some people ask. "This makes no sense and is an overpowered exploit."
But this kind of protection actually makes perfect sense against magical creatures. Why? Because you're surrounding your property with cold iron. Folklore has long maintained that iron can repel supernatural creatures, including undead, witches, and fay.
Curiously enough, rails seem not be effective against spiders, which makes sense since they're not supernatural, just oversized arachnids.
And since rails work against creepers, that would indicate that creepers are in fact supernatural. I am going to be so bold as to suggest that creepers are actually some kind of fay, as faeries are rumored have strong connections to the plant world and are particularly vulnerable to iron. If I had to guess I would say that creepers are dryads, tree spirits that can become very hostile towards humans that harm trees. Hamadryads in particular die if their tree is cut down, which could explain the creeper's miserable expression and suicidal behavior. They might be the doomed spirits of the trees Steve has destroyed, trying to get vengeance before they perish.
As for normal animals, wild creatures are notoriously skittish and might avoid rail simply because it's unfamiliar and frightening.
I realize you're attempting to be positive and have some fun with your post, but I have to say that this isn't logical at all. Not only is the folklore connection you made innately illogical, but the fact that you're stretching it into Minecraft's universe simply doesn't work, as iron swords are weaker than diamond. Nor do iron blocks scare away mobs. It 'makes sense' under gameplay context, and that's it. It's far from "perfectly logical".
They aren't "scared" of rails, this is a myth. Standing behind rails wont prevent a zombie from removing your appendix, it only helps mobs randomly derping around on tracks, causing minecarts to jam up.
So no these rails are useless as a defense, zombies even cross without provocation now and then. Its just so they wont come to a STOP on the tracks, causing accidents.
I think it's a funny post and you guys are taking it too seriously if you are actually trying to dispute its logicality. I think it's meant to be a statement on how silly some people are over the change, especially the ones who haven't even tried it in the snapshot.
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You say spiders are not supernatural, just (magically?) oversized arachnids.
Zombies also are not supernatural, just Steves that died while infected by a unknown disease... therefore they should not care about iron or sh*t.
I found the original post quite interesting from a folklore standpoint, even if it is more of an attempt at ex post facto explanation. However, there is one flaw in this reasoning: if mobs are "afraid" of minecart tracks because of the iron in them, why do they not similarly avoid iron bars?
I think the best way to see why they are afraid of it is to get inside their head.
Zombie:Player. Me eat brain
Player: BACK, abomination
Zombie: Player hurt Thog. Thog hate talkie man
Zombie: Thog follow. Thog eat brain of talkie man
*Players goes inside, there is a rail outside the door*
Zombie: *has a flashback*
Thog's Dad: Son, today is a great day. Us villagers have created many things. We've created wheat farms we don't tend. We've built churches nobody prays to, and we've created houses who's doors are inaccessible because of terrible civic engineering, but today a stranger came to the village, and he has powers that are extraordinary
Thog: What powers?
Thog's Dad: Well, he can use crafting tables, and he has arms. Also, he is building a railway of some sort. He didn't explain what it was. Also he harvested and took all our wheat and carrots, but we were fine with it, because we don't have arms.
Thog: What's it for?
Thog's Dad: It seems to move things. He demonstrated it with that pig that had been in our well for 5 generations.
*Suddenly the mysterious stranger comes inside, and starts pushing him out the door*
Thog's Dad: I Have been chosen! I love you son! I will see you in the paradise I am being sent to!
*stranger pushes Thog into a cart, goes back and goes to push thog*
Thog: Ahh, Father, he is invading my personal space! STRANGER DANGER!
Thog's Dad: It's OK son. Just let it happen.
*Thog get's pushed into a cart as well, mysterious stranger sends them off*
Thog's Dad: This is the happiest day of my life!
*the two carts bump, and thog's cart slows down*
*Thog's dad's cart hits a detector rail, then a powered rail that stops him. the TNT next to it activate. It explodes*
So you see, zombies are afraid of railway tracks because their fathers were all killed in terrible player-caused 'accidents' involving railway systems as a child.
Also, brownie points if you get the reference I made.