Valheim tips to help with crafting, building a base and defeating your first boss

Valheim tips to get your started
(Image credit: Iron Gate)

Valheim tips will be particularly useful when you first arrive in the Viking afterlife, as you'll soon be fighting for survival so any pointers for how to proceed will help. From time to time you'll receive tidbits of advice from Odin's raven, but for the most part it's up to you to figure things out for yourself in Valheim, and with so much going on this can feel somewhat overwhelming at first. You don't want to find yourself in a situation where you're simply wandering around aimlessly, so we're here to point you in the right direction so you can make a strong start.

You may be wondering what items you should begin looking for first when you spawn, or how you use them to craft an axe and other tools to aid your adventuring. There's also the tricky matter of how to place a campfire near your bed, when it can't go on the wooden floor for obvious reasons – unless you want a particularly toasty sleep. To answer any early questions you may have, follow our Valheim beginner's tips guide to get on your way.

1. Enter different worlds in Valheim to get resources you can't find

Looking for Valheim resources

(Image credit: Iron Gate AB)

Although you might prefer to stick to the first server you enter, it is very useful to know this from the beginning: you can take your character to whichever Valheim world you want, without losing stats or items.

You should definitely use this to your advantage while gathering resources later on. Can’t find any stones around your base? Or maybe there’s a shortage of deer? Then go back to the main menu, and enter another world that does have a lot of these resources.

2. Grab wood and stones to get started in Valheim

Gathering wood in Valheim

(Image credit: Iron Gate AB)

This may not come as a surprise to those familiar with the survival genre, but the first thing you need to do after spawning in the world of Valheim is gather wood and stones. See the smaller trees? Simply punch them with your bare hands until they break into wooden logs. 

Stones, on the other hand, need to be picked up. You can only get the small ones, so keep an eye out for them while walking through the woods.

While gathering these resources, it won’t be long until you encounter your first enemies; the Greylings. Don’t worry too much about them though, the Greylings are pretty weak and a few punches will kill them.

3. Craft the axe and hammer to build your first base

The Valheim crafting menu

(Image credit: Iron Gate AB)

You can open your Inventory and the Crafting menu with Tab. The first tool you need is the stone axe: use 5 pieces of wood and 4 stones to make it. This will help you chop down trees much faster. That’s a good thing, because we’re going to need lots of wood to build our first Valheim base. 

Next, use 3 wood and 2 stones to craft a hammer. Equip this tool to start building your base. Right-clicking opens up the menu with different building materials, left-clicking places a material, and the middle mouse button allows you to dismantle any piece at no cost. Check out the Valheim crafting progression path as well, to see what else you can make and when.

4. Craft a Valheim workbench and create a building area

Crafting a Valheim workbench

(Image credit: Iron Gate AB)

Once you have your basic tools, the next thing you need is a Valheim workbench. This will unlock many new crafting options, and creates an area for you to build on. Equip the hammer, and then go to the ‘crafting’ tab to find the recipe for the workbench. It requires 10 wood.

After you place the bench, you will see a large, white circle surrounding it. This is your building area. If you want to build somewhere else, either place a second workbench or simply dismantle it and place it again.

5. Build a Valheim base

A Valheim base in the woods at night

(Image credit: Iron Gate AB)

But don’t think you’re done just yet! Before you can actually use your workbench, it needs to be protected by a base. Placing a simple wall and a piece of roof will suffice, but you can just as well start on a proper Viking home. 

As the forest ground is quite uneven, most buildings in Valheim require a foundation. Use the poles and beams to support your floors and walls. Keep in mind that this base will often be under attack after defeating the first boss, so do make sure it’s sturdy. You should place your valuable loot inside.

6. Build a Valheim respawn point with a bed and campfire

A Valheim respawn point

(Image credit: Iron Gate AB)

Now that the Valheim base is finished, it’s time to place a bed. This is not just useful for skipping the night; it’s also your custom Valheim respawn point. You can find the building recipe by equipping the hammer and then clicking the ‘furniture’ tab.

There’s just one problem though: you need a campfire close to your bed, but the bed is inside your wooden base and the campfire can’t be p§laced on wood. The solution? Place the campfire next to your bed, but outside your base. It doesn’t matter if there’s a wall between them!

7. Find and eat food in Valheim

Eating food in Valheim

(Image credit: Iron Gate AB)

Your character is probably hungry by now. Luckily, the raspberry bushes, mushrooms, and animals in Valheim are not that hard to find. There is just one tricky thing that you should know about; you can’t eat the same food type twice in a row. 

Apparently Vikings care about a varied diet, so you can eat 1 raspberry and 1 mushroom at the same time, but not 2 raspberries. You will have to wait until the food icon in the lower left corner of the screen starts flickering or has disappeared. This means you can eat the food again.

8. Find and defeat the first Valheim boss Eikthyr

Taking on the Valheim boss Eikthyr

(Image credit: Iron Gate AB)
More Valheim Bosses

If you want to advance in Valheim, you need to defeat the bosses. The first boss, Eikthyr, is located near your default spawn point so isn't hard to find. After finding his location, you must offer a deer trophy to summon him.

It is not wise to battle Eikthyr right away. Make sure you have the best Valheim weapons first, such as an upgraded bow or Valheim flint knife. You should also equip the best Valheim armor before you head into battle, and killing boar and deer will get you the required materials. Finally, make sure you’re fully fed, healed, and rested. After you defeat Eikthyr, you can bring his trophy to the default spawn point to get better stats.

9. A few more essential tips before entering Valheim

Exploring in Valheim

(Image credit: Iron Gate AB)

Here are a few final things you should keep in mind when you start your Valheim adventure:

  1. Falling trees can kill you. As soon as you notice that a tree is going to fall, step away.
  2. A quick way to gather lots of wood in Valheim is by placing a workbench next to an abandoned building and dismantling the foundations. You will get a big stack by just a few clicks.
  3. Always make use of Valheim repair options to fix up your items before you leave your base. If you click on the workbench, you can repair your items for free (no additional resources required). 
  4. Using roll-dodge will help you win many difficult battles. You need to go in ‘sneak’ mode first (using Ctrl), and then press Shift. It’s a fast and easy way to avoid taking damage.
  5. Skills are upgraded by simply using the ability (running, swimming etc.) but can be diminished by dying.
  6. Boars don’t run away, but deer do. So begin by hunting boar for leather scraps with a melee weapon; then use them to make a bow and start hunting deer for their leather.
  7. Those aren’t arrows flying at you, it’s just the wind.

And that’s all. You’re as ready for the Viking world of Valheim as you’ll ever be. Eikthyr better watch out!

Marloes Valentina Stella

I’m a freelance journalist who (surprise!) kind of has a thing for videogames. When I’m not working on guides for GamesRadar, you can probably find me somewhere in Teyvat, Novigrad, or Whiterun. Unless I’m feeling competitive, in which case you should try Erangel. You can also find my words on PCGamesN, Fanbyte, PCGamer, Polygon, Esports Insider, and Game Rant.