Ever since the update I haven't been able to get a hold of an elytra for the life of me.
I bring plenty of blocks, food, ender pearls, slow fall potions, ender chest, silk touch pick, night vision potions, enchanted armor and looting sword.
I have found 4 end cities now. Every single one has not had a ship so no elytra. Four in a row. Nothing.
I make bridges or columns where I can safely ender pearl, soon I'm out of blocks and need to mine endstone. As soon as I think that I'm running through resources too fast so I decide to take a few more risks with my throws. Inevitably it hits the side of a platform, and this last time I got to die in slow motion as all my ender pearls fell short.
All I need is one elytra so I can explore easier, etc., but this is getting to be the complete opposite of fun. I've gone through this cycle about 3 times now, having giving it a rest for a few weeks since last utter failure.
Do I seriously need to make one of those fake airplane redstone contraptions and crawl my way to an endship over hours? I'm not even kidding.
I have a few SSP worlds I play and I've managed to get Elytra in all of them, but it did take awhile sometimes.
On my first trip the outer end I landed on a large island with no end city, but there was a city on the next island over, and it had a ship. In another world I landed on a small island in between 2 large islands, both of which had cities, but neither had a ship. It took me quite a long time to get an elytra in that second world. I lost count of how many end cities I raided before I found a ship (on the bright side, I have a LOT of shulker shells in that world).
There's a data pack from Xisumavoid which makes the dragon drop elytra when you kill it.
If you're this pissed-off about grind, enable Creative and give yourself one or at least use flight (you can instead go into Spectator mode for this so you don't accidentally give yourself items or break something you didn't want to break) to traverse the void quickly.
If you want to do it "legit", stop complaining and use your experience to plan better.
I find it useful to bring along blank maps on maximum-zoomed-out-scale and use this to help map out what parts of The End you've explored and which you haven't. Grab the magenta-and-black banners from an End City or two, rename a few of them on an anvil to serve as map markers. This also is helpful when trying to get back to the gateway platform to portal back to the central island.
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It's true that Random Number Generators as thresholds to get stuff that helps-defeat the "R.N.G( 's) ." later feel like a 1-time steep climb. Thresholds can be rough.
I try to have fun when being repeatedly-defeated by this Game Mechanic by enjoying the other ones, sometimes even while-attempting to get-to the next "'loot' 'box'" ("banned" in at least one "country" - or more? - now! [would this apply to MC..?]), sometimes not. So for example, we used to have to get Melon Seeds from AbMS Chests (I don't think it was Dungeons, but maybe), and often Pumpkin Seeds as well (if we just couldn't find Pumpkin patches on the Surface).
I'd make a point of just Fighting everything - get better at that - using Water Flows to move-Hostiles away, Build more-and-better, and even entertain thoughts of TNT (which might destroy Spawners) but mostly Lava. But often I couldn't find an AbMS, and /or going-through it to find - such - Chests, which might or Might Not contain such was Not going to give a soon /favorable result.
Which's why I'd do all-But that, at other times. I wouldn't make anything hinge - my sense of anything like "forward" "Progress" in a Game - on any one thing (heck, otherwise I might enjoy Hardcore more [on the flip side, ever heard of "Progress Quest"?]).