- 1 Summary
- 2 Getting Started
- 3 First Steps
- 4 Heading Onward
- 5 Final Steps
- 6 Hardmode
- 7 Jungle Temple
- 8 World Farming
- 9 Cave Running
- First, go hunting for Pots and Chests on the surface, or in caves. Gear up with the loot, but save at least one grenade in your inventory.
- Acquire at least 20 Bombs or more. You can do this by looting, or building houses for at least 4 NPCs: one of these must be a Demolitionist.
- Find a Corruption/Crimson biome and bomb your way to two of the Shadow Orbs/Crimson Hearts for a bit of good loot. This will allow the Goblin Army event to happen if you have at least 200 health or more.
- Choose any combination of the following to do:
- Wait for a Goblin Army and defeat the army to get a bit of loot (like the Harpoon and Spiky Balls), and the Goblin Tinkerer.
- Loot the Jungle, and possibly take on Queen Bee. You need Beenades to rapidly damage the Wall of Flesh.
- Defeat the Eater of Worlds/Brain of Cthulhu to gain access to Corruption/Crimson gear and allow Meteorite Crashes to happen.
- Defeat Skeletron and loot the dungeon. This will also allow the Mechanic to move in.
- Dig to The Underworld and clear a long passage for the fight against the Wall of Flesh.
- Taking time to loot the Shadow Chests, get a Hellforge, and mine Hellstone is an optional advantage.
- Defeat the Wall of Flesh.
- You might find it worthwhile to farm in Space for some time until you get enough materials to craft a pair of Harpy Wings.
- It isn't possible to skip the Mechanical Bosses, Plantera and Golem since their deaths directly trigger the next respective phases of the game, so instead gear up and defeat them.
- At any time, you can fight Duke Fishron and the Pirate Invasion for extra loot.
- The Solar Eclipse is fully unlocked post-Plantera (and before Plantera if you can glitch into the Jungle Temple and survive farming the enemies for the Solar Tablet Fragments). The Hardmode Dungeon is post-Plantera, as are the Pumpkin Moon and Frost Moon events. Martian Madness is post-Golem.
Note: With 1.4, a number of exploits have been fixed:
- The Reaver Shark has been nerfed to lower pickaxe power, no longer representing a leap to the end of the pre-Hardmode pickaxes. If you are in 1.3, this still is a good pickaxe.
- Fished Crates now come in pre-Hardmode and post-Hardmode versions, so stocking up before Hardmode no longer allows starting off Hardmode with a stock of Hardmode metal.
- In 1.3.5, breaking a third orb (and every third orb afterwards) could directly cause Meteors to spawn. In 1.4, this now requires actually fighting the boss.
If you wish to rush into high tiers of equipment as soon as possible, you may choose to simply not build any houses, although, it may take only two minutes or less to build an apartment with minimum NPC requirements. You don't have to build a house for the Guide, Goblin Tinkerer, Mechanic, Tax Collector, or Wizard, as they will initially appear even when no houses are available. Keep in mind though, unless you have houses, these NPCs will not respawn after they die for the first time. In 1.4, the Party Girl, Merchant, and Demolitionist will appear instead of the Guide in worlds generated with the special Drunk World, Not The Bees!, and For The Worthy seeds (respectively), making those NPCs accessible without needing houses for them. This does remove the Guide, however. Additionally, certain items that can prove invaluable later on, such as the Clentaminator or Autohammer, or even Bombs are bought from NPCs that require a house to move in. If you do choose to build houses, make sure they are grouped together and secure from attacks from enemies. However, take note that many bosses can go through walls. Fight bosses away from your NPCs if you don't want to risk their lives, but keep in mind that their attacks may be useful during battles.
Assuming you're starting with a fresh character in a newly generated world, you have a few options on the first day. Your starting Copper Pickaxe will probably do for now, but the tiny hitbox, slow speed and negligible damage of the Copper Shortsword leaves you under armed for even the most basic of enemies. Exploring the surface will eventually lead to the discovery of Chests, usually surrounded by Pots. These will provide you with Ropes and Torches, which are essential to exploring further underground earlier. However, what you're really looking for in these chests is one of these weapons:
- Spear, a powerful melee weapon that can hit enemies multiple times with a single stab.
- Wooden Boomerang, a "ranged" melee weapon that can be thrown as often as you can catch it. It can be upgraded into the enchanted boomerang with a single fallen star.
- Blowpipe, an early ranged weapon that can shoot seeds and darts.
- Wand of Sparking, an early magic weapon that shoots piercing sparks.
You may also find Shuriken and Throwing Knives which, while limited, will allow you to do some damage from a distance if needed. Grenades are also pretty common, but their use in combat is limited compared to gaining early access to the Demolitionist, which is essential to getting better weapons, potentially before the sun even goes down. If you do manage to find a grenade (or other explosive) build a house for the Demolitionist. Outside of offensive items, the following items may also be found.
- Bars of Copper, Tin, Iron or Lead that can be used to upgrade tools or weapons.
- The Umbrella, which negates fall damage while held. This can be used to go deep underground with little equipment, though getting back up will still be complicated. It will also allow using a Gravitation Potion to search for and loot Floating Islands, which will offer much better fall-protection equipment.
- Climbing Claws, which can ease the task of getting out of a deep hole you've fallen into and remain useful into Hardmode, both alone and combined with the Shoe Spikes.
- Potions, especially Lesser Healing Potions and Recall Potions.
- Arrows, which are useful if you've built a Wooden Bow.
If you can gather twenty Cobwebs, a Wooden Yoyo can prove to be very invaluable in your early exploration, as it has more range than any Wooden Sword and can be maneuvered around corners and through small holes.
If you're expedient then you can begin building shelter. Try to finish two houses, one for the Guide you start with and another for the Merchant to move into. Buying an Iron Anvil for 50 is much more efficient than building a work bench and a furnace to ultimately burn through fifteen Iron Ore (however, you can find an Iron/Lead Anvil inside a ruined house underground). The Merchant can also sell you a Bug Net, which lets you catch bait for fishing. While fishing takes a few minutes from your day, there are a number of places where it can help you skip ahead.
All in all, spending the first day exploring and treasure hunting is far more productive than digging holes or chopping wood. A bit of fishing can also get you some Bomb Fish, which will come in handy when you go underground the next day.
You can opt for staying up all night fighting. Bear in mind that your gear and health at this point might make this a daunting task. Zombies drop Shackles, which both increase defense and carry modifiers. What you're really after in this is the Zombie Arm, a powerful early melee weapon comparable to the Tungsten Broadsword.
Even the surface has better options than just regular wooden armor. If you're still on the first or second day, you're unlikely to have the several dozen Bars required to craft metal armors, but "high-tier" wooden armors made from Cactus, Ebonwood, or Shadewood are comparable. (If you happen to be playing during the Halloween season, Pumpkin armor is even better and offers a damage bonus.) While you'll have to deal with attacks from Eaters of Souls, Crimeras and even Face Monsters, it shouldn't take long to chop down a few trees and toss together some armor. If you're feeling daring, or if you've got an Accessory with a particularly good Modifier, you may even choose to skip armor outright: almost all enemies at this stage in the game are melee based and susceptible to knockback, so if you don't get hit then your damage resistance doesn't matter.
If your world generated with corruption, and you're feeling particularly patient, you can farm Eaters of Souls to get Ancient Shadow armor, which can provide a nice boost in defense and speed.
Going Underground (the hard way)
Now, on day two, it's time to get a gun.
By now, you should have scouted out where the Corruption or Crimson is located, and now it's time to go there. No pickaxe able to be crafted at this stage has the ability to break Ebonstone or Crimstone and allow the player to reach the Shadow Orbs or Crimson Hearts. Ironically, you have to break them in order to reach them- breaking three hearts or orbs causes Eater of Worlds/Brain of Cthulhu to appear, which drops Shadow Scales/Tissue Samples used to craft the Nightmare Pickaxe/Deathbringer Pickaxe that can mine through these harder materials. In some sense, every player has to skip a step in this way, but the earliest way to get to the next prize is to use Bombs or Bomb Fish or Dynamite to break through the tainted stone. Admittedly, this requires a bit of luck to start out - one of those chests or pots you found earlier has to have had some Grenades in it, and hopefully you didn't use them. If you're holding it in your inventory and have a free house, then the Demolitionist will move in, ready to sell you the much more important Bombs (as well as the more destructive but expensive Dynamite, if that's more your speed). These will destroy terrain, including the impenetrable tainted stone of a chasm. Lacking the Demolitionist, you can fish for the fairly common Bomb Fish, which are equivalent to Sticky Bombs and will suffice to break the stone.
- In version 1.4, the Scarab Bomb was added that can serve as a decent substitute for normal bombs, provided you're confident enough to venture into the Underground Desert for some pot smashing and chest looting. You may also fish them from Oasis Crates, though note that this method may take quite a bit more time than exploration and you'd most likely fish up multiple Bomb Fish by that point, rendering the crates irrelevant.
Note that no boss is going to be fought here yet. You are after something much more interesting. While destroying three of these will cause the biome's representative boss to spawn, each individual one drops a useful item. Most importantly, the first of either, when broken, has a 100% chance to drop as a specific type of Gun, along with 100 Musket Balls for ammunition:
- Musket, found in the Corruption. High damage, low fire rate.
- The Undertaker, found in the Crimson. High fire rate, low damage.
While there are differences that may affect an individual's preference, either of these guns supersedes any bow available until the moments just before hardmode in terms of raw damage, as well as Musket Balls dealing more damage as ammunition than Arrows while still being cheaper. While they won't be competitive with weapons you'll find later, they'll allow you to prevail over the Goblin Invasion that is certainly coming after you break your first orb or heart. Either will also allow the Arms Dealer to arrive.
Descending into the chasm itself is easy if you've found an Umbrella or plan to slide down with Climbing Claws, though getting out may still be hard. Using Rope to make a quick way in and out is optimal. Once inside, find one of the hearts or orbs - they glow with the biome's color, making them hard to miss in the dark underground - and blast a hole to it with bombs. Another bomb will destroy it as well, giving you an ominous system message and a loot drop. If you break a second orb/heart, you may find the following:
From Shadow Orbs:
- A different type of Shadow Orb that, when used, creates a light-emitting orb that follows you.
- The Vilethorn is fittingly, very effective against the multi-segmented Eater of Worlds you'll eventually fight in this same biome.
- The Ball O' Hurt can be handy for fighting large groups of enemies or attacking from range.
- The Band of Starpower may be less useful than other treasures, but it can still be combined with other accessories later in the game.
From Crimson Hearts:
- A different type of Crimson Heart that, when used, creates a light-emitting heart that bounces after you.
- The Crimson Rod is very efficient for dealing with stronger enemies, as it will continue dealing damage after you flee the spot. It is also effective against the biome's boss, the Brain of Cthulhu, though it's a bit less of a hard counter.
- The Rotted Fork is a lifesaver, as it is the strongest spear-type weapon you'll get your hands on before The Underworld.
- The Panic Necklace, while limited in use, can allow for faster escape from dangerous monsters.
Feel free to break a second orb if you can, but avoid breaking a third one unless you want to battle the boss. While you're down here, you may choose to open up paths to other orbs or hearts as well, in preparation for eventually finishing these biomes. Otherwise, you can go home.
In 1.3.5, breaking a third orb (and every third orb afterwards) could directly cause Meteors to spawn. In 1.4, this now requires actually fighting the boss.
An Idea For Corruption Players
In Classic mode a few well placed sticks of dynamite can easily kill the Eater of Worlds or get enough Shadow Scales to craft the Nightmare Pickaxe, which allows you to mine Hellstone. Once you get Hellstone, Obsidian, and a Hellforge you can craft Molten equipment out of Hellstone Bars and completely forget about the Eater of Worlds.
To the Jungle
After getting geared up a bit more (or maybe not, if you're feeling confident), you could head to the Jungle. A ranged weapon is heavily recommended here, as the Hornets can be deadly if taken on with a weak sword. Gather as many Stingers, Jungle Spores, and Vines as you can. The Jungle Hat is arguably the easiest piece of high tier armor to get, requiring no mobs, no pickaxe, and only eight spores required, and will give an easy five defense, as well as mana. Stingers can be crafted into Poison Darts, useful if you're still hanging on to that Blowpipe from earlier. Because of the Jungle's large caves, this is the best place to quickly find more gear, such as the Cloud in a Bottle, Magic Mirror, Shoe Spikes and if you're lucky, a Lava Charm. If your expedition is a success, you should make a Blade of Grass, Thorn Chakram, Ivy Whip or an Amazon. You're almost set for Hardmode already! If you come across a Beehive, it can be a good idea to snag some Honey, or even battle Queen Bee herself. But if you can't seem to find success in the Jungle, or simply want to make your start somewhere else, there are plenty of other options.
The Goblin Invasion
The Goblin Invasion can be skipped as well, but doing so can be a very large mistake, as beating the invasion will allow the Goblin Tinkerer to appear, and he is needed for combining accessories and improving your gear. He also sells the Rocket Boots, which are very handy for the treacherous lava pits of the underworld that you'll soon be facing. On top of that, the Invasion can drop 2 very useful items: the Shadowflame Knife and the Shadowflame Bow. These can remain effective until mid-hardmode.
To the Dungeon... or not
The Dungeon has many items that can prove invaluable... but it's by no means required to go in. If you're planning on fighting with magical weapons, though, you may want to take a peek at the entrance and see if you can find a Water Bolt [only post-Skeletron in 1.4.X] . Leaving Skeletron is also a good way to save the Dungeon Guardians for when you have Hardmode gear, to get yourself a Bone Key. Eventually however, you will want to kill Skeletron and delve into the Dungeon, as items such as the Muramasa and Cobalt Shield can almost be too good to give up, and a Shadow Key lets you get at Underworld loot from the Shadow Chests. Also, Skeletron is required to be killed to spawn the Cultists, because the Old Man overrides the Cultists spawns, so Skeletron will have to be fought. However, he doesn't have to be defeated right away.
By now you should have a set of Jungle armor, Shadow armor, Crimson armor, or Necro armor. If any meteorites fell, now is a good time to decide if you want Meteor armor and the Space Gun or not. If you want meteor gear, but haven't had any luck with meteorites, smash Orbs/Hearts between 12:00am and 4:30am for maximum meteor landings, or, if you have a Shadow Key you can try your luck on the many Shadow Chests of the Underworld, as they can contain Meteorite Bars. By now you need a pickaxe strong enough to mine hellstone, as the Hardmode ores are practically impossible to skip, and can't be mined without a Molten Pickaxe or dynamite after defeating the wall of flesh.
Tying Up Loose Ends
There's absolutely no way to skip the Wall of Flesh, so the skipping frenzy will have to end here. Make sure to get the Terraspark Boots (or Frostspark boots and Lava Waders if you don't play in 1.4), collect the last of your NPCs. You should also get 400 health and make a surface Glowing Mushroom biome before you go any farther. In the Underworld, you should hunt down and collect a Hellforge and mine a lot of Hellstone. You need enough to make a Molten Pickaxe, and (for melee players) a Fiery Greatsword. Anything more is optional. Once you have the Fiery Greatsword, use it to craft Night's Edge. If you're lucky and find an Obsidian Rose or Magma Stone while in the Underworld, they will be of great help in the next battle. Again if you play in 1.4 you can craft them into a Molten Skull Rose to save accessory slots.
The Wall of Flesh
If you're unprepared and extremely confident, you can choose to battle the Wall of Flesh right away. Death is very, very likely, as the Wall of Flesh is very difficult to defeat (especially in Expert Mode), so as to deter the unprepared from going into Hardmode. However, it is possible to kill Wall of Flesh with only dynamites, as done before. If you aren't extremely confident, you should spend a bit more time gearing up. (See the Guide about class setups)
The Wall of Flesh is both the metaphorical and literal wall in the way of advancing your world into Hardmode, so you'll have to give this battle everything you've got. If you have Lava Waders or an Obsidian Skin Potion, and Rocket Boots, a bridge will be unnecessary; otherwise, it can be a lifesaver. Now, gather your courage, and drop the voodoo doll into the lava... but not before you make sure your Guide is still alive. If he has died and not respawned, the voodoo doll will be completely wasted and you'll have to start looking for another Voodoo Demon. If you can't find a Voodoo Demon, you can make a house for the Guide in the underworld and drop the Guide into lava. This also spawns the Wall of Flesh.
After you have won, Hardmode will begin. Although Hardmode may seem far more nonlinear, this is an illusion, as you must fight the bosses in a specific order: Plantera's bulbs will not spawn without first defeating the Mechanical Bosses, the Lihzahrd Altar is nonfunctional prior to defeating Plantera, the Lunatic Cultist will not spawn until defeating Golem, and Moon Lord has no method of summoning other than the Lunar Pillars or an item crafted from their drops.
- A Living Mahogany Tree grows above the Temple, extending its roots into the Temple.
- The locked Lihzahrd Door generates on top of a trap or is surrounded by Wooden Spikes, which can be mined with lower-tier pickaxes or drills, effectively removing the door as well.
- A Jungle Shrine spawns in the wall.
- The Temple protrudes into The Underworld, where the Wall of Flesh can pull the player into the Temple. It is crucial to immediately kill the boss afterwards.
- The Temple spawns with an opening in the roof.
Otherwise, several methods exist to circumvent the requirement:
- Teleporting into the Temple is possible using a Rod of Discord or Teleporters. However, the target location needs to be free of Lihzahrd Brick Walls, which can be achieved by using any Hardmode hammer or hamaxe.
- Multiple hoik variations can be used to enter the Temple:
- Place three platforms, stacked, in front of either sides of the door and hammer each of them once will allow you to simply walk through the door if the ▼ Down key is held.
- By hammering the block under the outside of the door, and placing Rope on the outside of the door, it is possible to glitch through the door by swinging a sword toward the door.
- Make a line of 5 blocks with the block below the door being the center. Make the 4 blocks on the outside slabs. Use a hook to grapple the slab closest to the door. Hammer the slab furthest from the door, on the outside of the Temple. The fourth hammering should send the player through. The process can be repeated on the inside to go back outside.
- Hammer the blocks so they are facing inwards,[clarification needed] then use the Unicorn Mount and fall down into the blocks; dismount afterwards.
- Creating vertical passages (the bigger the better) from the top of the Temple to the surface allows meteorites to crash into it. This will replace Lihzahrd Bricks with Meteorite ore, letting the player dig into the Temple prior to getting the Picksaw. The chance of this happening is somewhat slim, though, but can be increased by placing Chests all over the world. As meteorites cannot land on Chests, the meteorite is bound to crash into the Temple, as it would be the only place it could land.
- Place 4 Minecart Tracks on both sides of the door and ride a Minecart into the door.
World Farming is a strategy employed by players wishing to get an early head start on the game. They do this by creating new worlds, and running across the surface of the world and occasionally cave running. This allows the gathering of materials from chests at a much higher rate than normal, and grants an early lead, especially if an ice biome spawns nearby. Some consider it cheating, others consider it the only way, especially for items like the Inferno Potion.
How To World Farm
- Create a new world
- Walk/run in one direction until you find a chest
- Loot and mine said chest and continue to look for more chests
- Once all chests have been explored, cave running is another option
Is a world worth farming?
- A world is bad for farming if
- To access the snow biome one must traverse the crimson/corruption
- The world is difficult to traverse (Lots of hills, etc.)
- There are no or very few caves to loot
- There are very few chests
- A world is good for farming if
- The ice biome is near spawn
- The world is relatively flat
- There are easily accessible caves
- There are lots of chests relatively close to spawn
It is easier to world farm if you know a specific world seed and world layout you have memorized (or at least know where everything is). All updates prior to 1.3.4 do not allow this, and for 1.3.4 and onwards until 1.4, you had to get lucky with a world seed because you could only copy seeds, not type them in manually. 1.4 is free to do this.
Similar to World Farming, Cave running is a strategy employed by players to get ahead in certain aspects of the game. However, unlike world farming, this does not require new worlds to be created each time, although it might be useful if you've exhausted your world's resources. Most notably, this strategy gets you ahead in chest resources and Life Crystals. However, there are some cons to this strategy.
How to cave run
This is a lot easier with minecart tracks, as these can be ridden until a cavern system appears. If you do find minecart tracks, and are planning to get the Terra Blade (this applies to all platforms EXCEPT PC), Cave running is when a player runs through cavern systems, mostly ignoring ore and doing little actual mining. They do this to spend time looking for chest resources from underground cabins and life crystals.
Pros and Cons
- Lots of life crystals (Up to 100 Health can be obtained in one run, sometimes even more with Spelunker Potions)
- Possibility of valuable early game weapons such as the Ice Boomerang
- Explores most of the underground
- Relies on world having an abundance of underground cabins
- Worlds with few underground cabins may struggle to grant any weapons
- Gaining hearts quickly can often lead to the necessary requirements for the Eye of Cthulhu to spawn
- If no weapons have been gained this can lead to a very underprepared boss fight, unless the player did not use the Life Crystals which will effectively block the spawn.
- Spawn can be prevented by unequipping any defense-boosting items before dusk as having 10 or more defense is also a requirement, but this can be rather vexing.
- Will often put the player behind in terms of weaponry and ore.