Valheim News & Announcements
Greetings!

We had quite a bit of a tumultuous end to January here at Iron Gate, with our Discord server unfortunately getting hacked. The server has been built back up again and we once more invite you to join us there, though we’re sad to say that most of the chat history is now gone due to the hackers deleting almost all of the channels. Still, so many of you reached out to us to offer your support and well-wishes, and it means a lot to us to have such a caring community. You’re the best!

But now on to the fun stuff: In case you’ve missed it, we are currently collaborating with Heroic Replicas! They have created some incredible Valheim replicas, both large and small, which you can now get your hands on. Check out their Kickstarter campaign, which is live for another couple of days. Book your items before February 26th while you have the chance!

The best part about the Kickstarter is that it’s run entirely by Heroic Replicas, so it hasn’t impacted the Ashlands development at all! We’d of course like to continue to give you some sneak peeks of what we’re working on, and for that we’d like to start off with the third and final Walk & Talk episode. We hope you’ve appreciated the series!



But of course we have some good old fashioned still images for you as well! The Ashlands is a hostile place, even for the creatures that live there. You’ll be able to stumble upon the corpses of some of them on your travels. Just be careful of whatever killed them in the first place…



The skulls of the very same creatures can also be used to create this fancy-looking wreath, which is both decorative and useful. Can you guess what for?



We also want to give you a clearer view of something from the Walk & Talk episode. We go into a bit of detail about the weapon customisation you’ll be able to experiment with in the Ashlands, and how you’ll use gems to give special properties to your items. This sword, for example, is the same sword that we’ve already shown you a lightning version of, but this is what it will look like if you upgrade it with a bloodstone instead:



Build of the Month

Even though we’re yearning for spring, we couldn’t resist this dreamy winter castle by Chicken_Phobia. Well done! If you want your creation to be featured in this section, use the hashtag #ValheimBotM on Twitter, Instagram or Facebook. Due to changes in the tagging system on Facebook and Instagram, please also send us a DM with a link to your entry as well as using the hashtag if you post there! You can view previous builds in this thread on Steam.



Ready your swords!

/The Iron Gate team

If you’d like to discuss the content of this post, please visit our Discord, or our forums on Reddit and Steam, or make a comment on social media!
Hello 2024!

We hope you’ve all had a lovely yuletide and that you’re ready for another year in the tenth world, because we sure are! As we mentioned last time, we are aiming to release the Ashlands update sometime during the first half of this year, and we’re already hard at work to ensure that it happens.

We want to kick off the year right away with another episode of our Walk & Talk series; it seemed like a lot of you really appreciated episode one, and we hope you’ll enjoy listening to us chat once again:



Just like last time, this episode shows off some things we haven’t revealed previously. One such thing is a twitcher spawner, which you will encounter a lot of in the Ashlands. You’ll have to check out the video to hear what we have to say about them, but we’ll give you a peek of what they look like right here:



Something else we want to show you is an updated visual of the fallen valkyrie. She really has come a long way from where we started out with her, and you’d better keep an eye on the sky if you want to avoid a swift death!



While most things in the Ashlands are indeed out to get you, there are still places where you might find some rest and refuge (at least for a precious moment or two). This temple is one such place, though you still need to be on your guard in case the charred dead decide to return to their place of worship…



Build of the Month

For the first Build of the Month this year we want to highlight this lakehouse by JosephMavridis! It was a very hard choice this month, so we suspect many of you have had some extra time to build over the holidays! If you want your creation to be featured in this section, use the hashtag #ValheimBotM on Twitter, Instagram or Facebook. Due to changes in the tagging system on Facebook and Instagram, please also send us a DM with a link to your entry as well as using the hashtag if you post there! You can view previous builds in this thread on Steam.



May your new year be prosperous!

/The Iron Gate Team

If you’d like to discuss the content of this post, please visit our Discord, or our forums on Reddit and Steam, or make a comment on social media!
Well met, vikings!

The year is drawing to a close and we have reached the final dev blog for 2023. We know that a lot of you have been asking about when the Ashlands update is due to be released, and we now want to officially confirm that it will be released sometime during the first half of 2024! Like with all our updates, it will hit the PTB first and then the live version a short while after that.

But for now we want to leave you with a little something over the holidays, so we’re going to share with you the first of a short series of “Walk & Talk” videos, in which community manager Josefin, artist/generalist Robin and programmer Jonathan chat about some Valheim and Ashlands topics. It’s not unlike the Fireside Chat videos we have previously made, but in a slightly different packaging:



Just in case you missed it, we have also shared another interview with one of our freelancers. This time it was Lee Williams, the writer behind a lot of Valheim’s lore, who got to introduce himself and his creative process!

And now, as usual, over to the teasers!

Since it’s almost yuletide, we wanted to show you some of the tasty-looking dishes we have cooked up in the Ashlands kitchens. May we tempt you with some Mashed Meat, a Piquant Pie, or perhaps a Spicy Marmalade?



Of course, you can’t cook without ingredients. Not much can grow in the hot and arid landscape of the Ashlands, but some plants are resilient enough to still thrive there. We thought we’d give you a glimpse of what they will look like:



And last, but the very opposite of least, we want to show you a hint of how absolutely badass you’ll be able to look in the Ashlands:



Build of the Month

The final Build of the Month for 2023 we would like to award to paddy_fr for this base in the snowy Mountains! If you want your creation to be featured in this section, use the hashtag #ValheimBotM on Twitter, Instagram or Facebook. Due to changes in the tagging system on Facebook and Instagram, please also send us a DM with a link to your entry as well as using the hashtag if you post there! You can view previous builds in this thread on Steam.



A merry yuletide and a happy new year to you all!

/The Iron Gate team

If you’d like to discuss the content of this post, please visit our Discord, or our forums on Reddit and Steam, or make a comment on social media!
Aside from some regular fixes and tweaks, this patch features two special things that we really hope you will appreciate! Firstly we have changed the seasonal items to be set to activate depending on the date. Since we're in December, that means the yuletide items will be available right now! And the second highly requested feature is that we have added keyboard/mouse support for Xbox, so that you can play the game however you prefer!

Happy holidays!


Abbreviated patch notes:
* Settings menu revamped
* Added automatic toggling of seasonal items
* Multiple bug fixes

Detailed patch notes:
Fixes & improvements:
* Fixed blurry item counters in inventory
* Fixed issue where player profile link in Player List would open multiple times
* Fixed problem where text "None" was hard coded in the build HUD to instead use localized string
* Enabled auto-size on BuildHUD amount text objects as they need to be sized down for some translations to fit
* Alleviated issue with music stuttering when playing with low FPS
* Added automatic toggling of seasonal items
* Fixed issue where the skill value UI text wouldn't update properly for bonus levels
* Added proper support for IME-input
* Added NumPad support for the Hotbar
* Fixed bug where key hints wouldn't display correctly on non-QWERTY keyboard layouts
* Implemented a system to detect low local disk space when saving
* Fixed an issue where admins couldn’t kick players via the player list UI on dedicated servers
* Tweaked boss-spawning to prevent bosses from getting stuck
* Fixed an issue where signs would be flashing with anti-aliasing on
* Fixed a bug that could cause boats to take damage due to low FPS
* Fixed bug where D-pad input was unresponsive in menus on Steam Deck
* Localization updated

Settings menu revamped:
* Split "Controls" tab into two: "Controller" and "Keyboard & Mouse"
* New tabs "Gameplay" and "Accessibility" for PC and Linux version with according settings
* Some settings can be found on multiple tabs so they can be found more easily
* Reordered some settings into other tabs
* Tool-tips for some settings to clarify their functionality
* Predefined graphic modes for PC and Linux: "Performance", "Quality", "Balanced" and "Very low"
* Added a "Keyboard & Mouse" tab for Xbox
* More graphic customization for Xbox versions
* Separate settings to invert the camera for controller and mouse
* Fixed overlapping of controller button labels

Xbox:
* Added Keyboard/Mouse support for Xbox
This update is for the Public Test branch of Valheim, and may therefore be unstable. Before we launch this update to the Default version of the game, we want to make sure to have a chance to discover bugs and adjust the balancing, to give you the best game experience possible.
Access the Public Test branch by right clicking Valheim in your Steam library, and then select ‘Properties’. In the new window, select ‘Betas’ and type in the code “yesimadebackups”. The Public Test branch should now be available for you to choose from.
Please leave any feedback you may have in the appropriate channel in our Discord, or in the appropriate forum on our website.
As always, remember to be considerate towards players not partaking in the Public Test, in case they want to avoid spoilers.
As the password indicates, please make sure to make backups of your save files before playing.


This patch features some further fixes and tweaks, but hopefully it should be ready to be moved to the live branch soon!

Detailed Patch Notes:
Fixes & improvements:
* Fixed bug where all mouse input was reset to "Mouse Back".
* Added fix for IME-input not working for first chat message.
* Fixed bug where the player can't reset keybindings if left mouse is set to switch tabs in settings
* Fixed overlapping graphic texts in settings
* Localization updated

Xbox:
* Removed render scale from all graphic presets
* Reset render scale for users on Xbox that have altered the render scale was done because the render scale is now disabled on Xbox
* Fixed issue where input wasn't validated properly on Xbox when using Keyboard/mouse input
This update is for the Public Test branch of Valheim, and may therefore be unstable. Before we launch this update to the Default version of the game, we want to make sure to have a chance to discover bugs and adjust the balancing, to give you the best game experience possible.
Access the Public Test branch by right clicking Valheim in your Steam library, and then select ‘Properties’. In the new window, select ‘Betas’ and type in the code “yesimadebackups”. The Public Test branch should now be available for you to choose from.
Please leave any feedback you may have in the appropriate channel in our Discord, or in the appropriate forum on our website.
As always, remember to be considerate towards players not partaking in the Public Test, in case they want to avoid spoilers.
As the password indicates, please make sure to make backups of your save files before playing.


Some tweaks and fixes to the PBT today!

Detailed Patch Notes:
Fixes & improvements:
* Fixed overlapping labels in the settings menu
* Fixed multiple issues connected to input and input fields
* Fixed not being able to bind keyboard keys to tab
* Removed NumPad support for hotbar

Xbox:
* Removed render scale setting on Xbox due to flickering issues
* Fixed a bug that could cause the Xbox to hang
This update is for the Public Test branch of Valheim, and may therefore be unstable. Before we launch this update to the Default version of the game, we want to make sure to have a chance to discover bugs and adjust the balancing, to give you the best game experience possible.
Access the Public Test branch by right clicking Valheim in your Steam library, and then select ‘Properties’. In the new window, select ‘Betas’ and type in the code “yesimadebackups”. The Public Test branch should now be available for you to choose from.
Please leave any feedback you may have in the appropriate channel in our Discord, or in the appropriate forum on our website.
As always, remember to be considerate towards players not partaking in the Public Test, in case they want to avoid spoilers.
As the password indicates, please make sure to make backups of your save files before playing.


Aside from some regular fixes and tweaks, this patch features two special things that we really hope you will appreciate! Firstly we have changed the seasonal items to be set to activate depending on the date. Since we're in December, that means the yuletide items will be available right now! And the second highly requested feature is that we have added keyboard/mouse support for Xbox, so that you can play the game however you prefer!

Abbreviated Patch Notes:
* Settings menu revamped
* Added automatic toggling of seasonal items
* Multiple bug fixes
* Xbox keyboard/mouse support added

Detailed Patch Notes:
Fixes & improvements:
* Fixed blurry item counters in inventory
* Fixed issue where player profile link in Player List would open multiple times
* Fixed problem where text "None" was hard coded in the build HUD to instead use localized string
* Enabled auto-size on BuildHUD amount text objects as they need to be sized down for some translations to fit
* Alleviated issue with music stuttering when playing with low FPS
* Added automatic toggling of seasonal items
* Fixed issue where the skill value UI text wouldn't update properly for bonus levels
* Added proper support for IME-input
* Added NumPad support for the Hotbar
* Fixed bug where key hints wouldn't display correctly on non-QWERTY keyboard layouts
* Implemented a system to detect low local disk space when saving
* Fixed an issue where admins couldn’t kick players via the player list UI on dedicated servers
* Tweaked boss-spawning to prevent bosses from getting stuck
* Fixed an issue where signs would be flashing with anti-aliasing on
* Fixed a bug that could cause boats to take damage due to low FPS
* Fixed bug where D-pad input was unresponsive in menus on Steam Deck

Settings menu revamped:
* Split "Controls" tab into two: "Controller" and "Keyboard & Mouse"
* New tabs "Gameplay" and "Accessibility" for PC and Linux version with according settings
* some settings can be found on multiple tabs so they can be found more easily
* Reordered some settings into other tabs
* Tool-tips for some settings to clarify their functionality
* Predefined graphic modes for PC and Linux: "Performance", "Quality", "Balanced" and "Very low"
* Added a "Keyboard & Mouse" tab for Xbox
* More graphic customization for Xbox versions
* Separate settings to invert the camera for controller and mouse
* Fixed overlapping of controller button labels

Xbox:
* Added Keyboard/Mouse support for Xbox
Greetings, vikings!

November is pretty dark and dreary, but we hope to brighten the darkness with this blog post!

As you may have noticed, we released a patch earlier this month which both featured a Unity upgrade as well as some seasonal items for autumn. Unfortunately it was released from the Public Test Branch a bit later than we had hoped, which meant that you didn’t get the jack-o-turnip and the pointy hat until after Halloween was over. We’re sorry about this, but we will make sure to switch this system to an automatic one in the future, so that you will always have the seasonal content available during certain times of the year!

But as always, on to the teasers!

We want to start off this post by showing off one of the new armour designs for the Ashlands, now fully modelled and textured. Since fire is not only a symbol of destruction, but also of rebirth and new beginnings, we have named this set after one of the two first humans in Norse mythology: Embla.



And as you may recall, we have said that Fortress time! will be a central part of the Ashlands. This is still the case, and we wanted to show you a current peek of one of the eponymous fortresses. Of course, it will not just be the wall on its own that you have to get past…



Last time we showed you some weapons that will be added to the game with the Ashlands update. Many of you pointed out that they didn’t look particularly magical or special compared to the earlier concept art, and you are correct. We won’t tell you just yet how you will be achieving the extra power boosts for these weapons, but we wanted to show you one of them in a more final form:



Build of the month

For this month, we want to show off this massive castle by aGurkis1! It was technically posted in October, but after we had already made our selection for that month. Since it was so impressive, we wanted to show it off now instead! If you want your creation to be featured in this section, use the hashtag #ValheimBotM on Twitter, Instagram or Facebook. Due to changes in the tagging system on Facebook and Instagram, please also send us a DM with a link to your entry as well as using the hashtag if you post there! You can view previous builds in this thread on Steam.



May your swords be sharp!

/The Iron Gate team

If you’d like to discuss the content of this post, please visit our Discord, or our forums on Reddit and Steam, or make a comment on social media!
Some small, but still very much important, fixes for this patch!

Patch Notes:
* Fixed a loading order issue for ObjectTypes, so now items/creatures won’t load before terrain is finished
* 'Use item' hints on objects for the hotbar are now visible again when playing with a controller
This update is for the Public Test branch of Valheim, and may therefore be unstable. Before we launch this update to the Default version of the game, we want to make sure to have a chance to discover bugs and adjust the balancing, to give you the best game experience possible.
Access the Public Test branch by right clicking Valheim in your Steam library, and then select ‘Properties’. In the new window, select ‘Betas’ and type in the code “yesimadebackups”. The Public Test branch should now be available for you to choose from.
Please leave any feedback you may have in the appropriate channel in our Discord, or in the appropriate forum on our website.
As always, remember to be considerate towards players not partaking in the Public Test, in case they want to avoid spoilers.
As the password indicates, please make sure to make backups of your save files before playing.


Some small, but still very much important, fixes for this patch!

Patch Notes:
* Fixed a loading order issue for ObjectTypes, so now items/creatures won’t load before terrain is finished
* 'Use item' hints on objects for the hotbar are now visible again when playing with a controller
We have a further list of hotfixes for you today!

Patch notes:
* Fixed an issue where text would not load correctly if computer name uses non-english characters
* Fixed and issue where the character orientation does not update when interacting with objects
* Fixed an issue where the touchpad on PS controllers sometimes opens pause and map menu at the same time
* Fixed an issue with custom keybinds for build menu can’t close the build menu
* Fixed an issue where the Steam Deck D-pad/left trackpad does not not always registering input in GUI
* Fixed an issue when exiting pause menu, characters may jump depending on controller layout
* Fixed an issue where merchant shield stops functioning after re-logging
We have just a small hotfix for you today!

Patch notes:
* Fixed an issue where text would not load correctly if computer name uses non-english characters
* Fixed an issue with the player list having no background graphic
* Fixed an issue with click sounds in the build menu
* Fixed an issue with sleeping Ulvs would fill the player log with warnings
We know it's a bit late, but this patch finally brings the Jack-o-turnip and the new pointy hat to the default branch of the game! Hopefully we will be able to change our system for this fairly soon, so that the seasonal content can simply be tied to specific dates in the future, instead of having to pass through the Public Test Branch before being released.

Aside from the autumn items, this patch also entails an engine upgrade to Unity 2022. Because of this Unity upgrade, please note that worlds used in this update will not be backwards compatible with earlier versions of the game.

Patch notes:

Fixes & Improvements:
* Jack-o-turnip enabled. Spooky season!
* New seasonal item: Pointy hat
* Added a new “Render scale” graphics setting that enables the main camera to be rendered at a lower resolution than the viewport and UI
* Improved automatic input switching so that connected gamepads with stick drift no longer take over control when playing with keyboard and mouse
* Optimized code that determines which objects in the world to instantiate, lowering the baseline CPU time by up to 5%
* Optimized structural integrity calculations, massively decreasing CPU time in areas with large builds
* Optimized enemy AI
* Optimized underwater logic
* Re-enabled objects to have more than 255 KVPs of arbitrary data of the same value type (important for some mods)
* Fixed a bug that could cause traps to trigger multiple times in multiplayer depending on how many players were near it
* Engine upgraded to Unity 2022
* Upgraded Steamworks.NET and PlayFab Party libraries to newer versions
* Engine-side optimizations for dedicated servers
* Tweaked boss spawning to prevent them from occasionally getting stuck when spawning
* Fixed bug that caused clicking sounds when selecting building pieces via controller
* Localization updated
This update is for the Public Test branch of Valheim, and may therefore be unstable. Before we launch this update to the Default version of the game, we want to make sure to have a chance to discover bugs and adjust the balancing, to give you the best game experience possible.
Access the Public Test branch by right clicking Valheim in your Steam library, and then select ‘Properties’. In the new window, select ‘Betas’ and type in the code “yesimadebackups”. The Public Test branch should now be available for you to choose from.
Please leave any feedback you may have in the appropriate channel in our Discord, or in the appropriate forum on our website.
As always, remember to be considerate towards players not partaking in the Public Test, in case they want to avoid spoilers.
As the password indicates, please make sure to make backups of your save files before playing.


Some minor fixes to the PTB! If all is well, it should soon be moved over to the default branch.

Patch notes:
Fixes & Improvements:
* Fixed issue with Steam Dedicated servers not running properly
* Upgraded Unity engine from 2022.3.9f to 2022.3.12f
* Change the default render scale setting to be "Native"
* Cleanup of the WearNTear code
* Fixed particle system indicating build-piece orientation not being visible
* Fixed boat no longer being detected as being underwater anymore
* Localization updated
Hello, vikings!

It’s time for another monthly check-in! As you may have noticed, there is currently a patch out on the Public Test Branch, which we as always invite you to play! It features an engine update – but also some seasonal content like the Jack-O-Turnip and a brand new witch hat!

Since our last blog post, we have also announced the winners of the Trial of Tyr, and we have teased you a little bit about our internal Ashlands playtesting on social media. After that playtesting post, we got a lot of questions about whether or not you will need to start a new world when the Ashlands update is eventually released. The answer to that is that it won’t be strictly necessary to get the new content, but it will be something we strongly recommend in order for you to get the best experience. The same has been true for previous large updates as well, and will most likely be the case for the rest of Valheim’s Early Access period. You can of course still bring your current characters with you into your new worlds!

But now on to the teasers, which we know you are all waiting for! First off, we want to go ahead and show you a small selection of the new weapons you’ll be able to craft in the Ashlands. Pictured below is a greatsword, a regular sword, a mace and yes, dual wielding axes.



We also want to show you this mysterious contraption… It looks a bit like the Obliterator, but it does something quite different. What do you think this might be used for?



We’ve previously shown you a bit of the Ashlands and what they look like where you will first set foot. But let’s also take a new peek at what they’re like further inland, where the lava can dominate pretty large areas! Crossing these lakes of molten rock will be a challenge of its own, we assure you…



Build of the Month

Since it’s properly autumn now, we couldn’t not choose this Swamps based stave church by splash_opain for this Build of the Month! Nicely done! If you want your creation to be featured in this section, use the hashtag #ValheimBotM on Twitter, Instagram or Facebook. Due to changes in the tagging system on Facebook and Instagram, please also send us a DM with a link to your entry as well as using the hashtag if you post there! You can view previous builds in this thread on Steam.



Skål!

/The Iron Gate team

If you’d like to discuss the content of this post, please visit our Discord, or our forums on Reddit and Steam, or make a comment on social media!
This update is for the Public Test branch of Valheim, and may therefore be unstable. Before we launch this update to the Default version of the game, we want to make sure to have a chance to discover bugs and adjust the balancing, to give you the best game experience possible.
Access the Public Test branch by right clicking Valheim in your Steam library, and then select ‘Properties’. In the new window, select ‘Betas’ and type in the code “yesimadebackups”. The Public Test branch should now be available for you to choose from.
Please leave any feedback you may have in the appropriate channel in our Discord, or in the appropriate forum on our website.
As always, remember to be considerate towards players not partaking in the Public Test, in case they want to avoid spoilers.
As the password indicates, please make sure to make backups of your save files before playing.



You have been asking for the jack-o-turnip, and here it is! We have also added a new seasonal item this year, in the form of a very stylish and pointy hat, which we really hope you'll enjoy.

Aside from the seasonal content, we have a couple of fixes for you, and this patch also entails an engine upgrade to Unity 2022. Because of this Unity upgrade, please note that worlds used in this update will not be backwards compatible with earlier versions of the game. Therefore, be extra sure to make backups this time.

Patch Notes:
Fixes & Improvements:
* Jack-o-turnip enabled. Spooky season!
* New seasonal item: Pointy hat
* Added a new “Render scale” graphics setting that enables the main camera to be rendered at a lower resolution than the viewport and UI
* Improved automatic input switching so that connected gamepads with stick drift no longer take over control when playing with keyboard and mouse
* Optimized code that determines which objects in the world to instantiate, lowering the baseline CPU time by up to 5%
* Optimized structural integrity calculations, massively decreasing CPU time in areas with large builds
* Optimized enemy AI
* Optimized underwater logic
* Re-enabled objects to have more than 255 KVPs of arbitrary data of the same value type (important for some mods)
* Fixed a bug that could cause traps to trigger multiple times in multiplayer depending on how many players were near it
* Engine upgraded to Unity 2022
* Upgraded Steamworks.NET and PlayFab Party libraries to newer versions
* Engine-side optimizations for dedicated servers
* Tweaked boss spawning to prevent them from occasionally getting stuck when spawning
* Fixed a bug that caused clicking sounds when selecting building pieces via controller
Just a small bunch of fixes this time around!

Patch Notes
Fixes & Improvements
* Fixed an issue with double dungeon compendium entry, could cause corrupted character save file
* Controller fix: Player has to press the "B" button twice in order to cancel pin naming
* Zooming on the map is now blocked while entering pin name
* Fixed click sounds that kept being played while navigating certain menus
We have a small set of fixes for you to test out today!

Patch Notes
Fixes & Improvements
* Fixed an issue with double dungeon compendium entry, could cause corrupted character save file
* Controller fix: Player has to press the "B" button twice in order to cancel pin naming
* Zooming on the map is now blocked while entering pin name
* Fixed click sounds that kept being played while navigating certain menus
The time has come to announce the winners of the very first Valheim speedrun competition – The Trial of Tyr! We're so impressed by everyone who attempted this difficult challenge and we want to thank everyone who gave it a go. But now, without further ado, we present to you our three champions:

Third Place

With the total playtime of 13 hours, 4 minutes and 7 seconds, the third prize goes to "Mr ADEL". You can watch the run in this YouTube playlist.

Second Place

The second place is claimed by "ThreadMenace", who completed the run in 10 hours, 52 minutes and 1 second. You can watch the entry on YouTube:



First Place

And finally, with a total playtime of only 7 hours, 54 minutes and 22 seconds, the grand victory goes to "Time Traveler" (or 时空旅行人, in the player's native Chinese). You can watch the full run on YouTube:



Interview with the Winner

Because we suspect you might all be a little bit curious about how one manages to kill all of Valheim's bosses in less than eight hours, we have asked Time Traveler some questions about the entry:

Q: Could you please tell us a little bit about yourself? Who are you and how long have you been playing Valheim?

A:
Hello guys, I'm Zhengyuan, a Valheim player from China, also known as "the Time Traveler" (时空旅行人), which is the ID I use on Bilibili, a Chinese video site, or 森罗万象 ("the all-inclusive") on Youtube. I primarily post my Valheim streams and guides on Bilibili. I added Valheim to my steam library on February 7 2021, when it was released into Early Access on Steam. My adventure as a viking started there and since then I have spent circa 4500h in Valheim -- almost all of my spare time is dedicated to it. It has become my favourite game ever.

Q: You're pretty active in the community with making guides and videos. What motivates you to speedrun the game and why do you enjoy it?

A:
Oh, that's a long story. The first 50 hours I spent in Valheim were really tough. The ores cannot be teleported. I had to retrieve my items by corpse run, not to mention all the skill loss. And some mobs at the moment were so tricky to deal with, like the troll, bonemass, the stone golem... All these mechanisms made Valheim extremely hardcore and challenging. And I was definitely not alone. When Valheim was just released, players from all over the world should have similar experience of struggling that I had. Many would say it was extremely difficult to play Valheim solo, if not impossible. And I did it. After my first solo "completion" playthrough, I began to delve into my research on Valheim, like the items, the mobs, the mechanisms, and so on. I kept wondering how to turn some crisis into triumph efficiently, how to defeat the bosses without taking damage from them, or how to improve the efficiency in my solo gameplay, and had experimental or actual games through numerous characters and world saves.

At some moment, I figured out I could set up temporary bases in the current biome, so as to save time from massive ore transfer. I understood different mobs have different damage resistances, which means it is more efficient to use spears on trolls or hammers on Bonemass to deal massive damage to their weak points. I studied the pattern of enemies and figured out what their flaws are and when they are vulnerable, which indicates when I could dodge and when I could fight back. As I have developed some useful survival techniques and accumulated some combat experience, finally I could complete Valheim  without any death, or 一命通关, which means one-life completion in Chinese. At that moment I had played Valheim for circa 300 hours.

Then I started posting my gameplay videos on Bilibili to share my gaming experience with my viewers. In China I am thought to be the first player to complete Valheim with one life, and have received some recognition and encouragement from the community. I am very grateful to that, and motivated to further refine my gameplay. Therefore, after my "one-life completion", I have achieved "one-life speedruns", breaking my own records, and focusing on both not dying and completing the game as fast as possible. As such, my videos gradually evolved into something about hardcore combat, extreme challenges, and breaking limits.Through my speedrun recordings, I want my viewers to understand and master my skills from a first-person perspective, so that they can improve themselves and have better combat in Valheim. I feel a great sense of accomplishment, willing to put a lot of passion into one-life speedrun. So I continuously challenge myself, surpass myself, and the contest is a great opportunity for me to prove all of it.

Q: You managed to complete the game in under eight hours. How did you prepare for it? How many times did you attempt it before you were satisfied with your final submission?

A:
My previous answer explains a lot. I have some succeeded Valheim one-life speedruns before, and the trial of Tyr is also a one-life speedrun contest. Though it seems like I don't have to do something special to prepare for the trial, which is just something I have done before, there's still something significantly different. I regularly play Valheim "unseeded". The map is always randomized, so I won't depend on something too lucky or RNG-dependent, which means the merchant is not the guy I would seek, some fancy equipment is not the thing I would craft, in order that the most parts of gameplay are under control.

However, the trial of Tyr is seeded, every contestant can scout the fixed world in advance, so I reconsider the importance of Haldor and the Frostner in this trial. The Frostner is insane, available in mid-game, but one can even use it in the Mistlands, so it is what I would happily have on my hands in this trial, thanks to Haldor. Since the map is seeded, the route of progression can be well determined, like where to sail, which dungeons to sneak into. For example, I already know the locations of the Moder and the silver veins, so I can finish the Moder and the silver mining on the Mountain in less than a hour. And that's why 6 anti-frost mead for me is enough, and I don't necessarily need anti-frost capes when I'm on the Mountain.

I have submitted three complete runs in the trial, which were finished in 11h31m, 8h07m and 7h54m, respectively. However I have circa 15 actual attempts. A few of them obviously ended due to deaths, and others mainly because the route I chose was too suboptimal, some result are not expected, or so on. It is fair enough though, without errors the "trial" won't be a trial.

Q: Which part of the run was the most challenging? Was it a specific boss fight, or another tricky situation?

A:
Always the Mountain, to be honest. The harsh terrain (similar to but not easier than the Mistlands), the blizzards to disrupt the player's vision and hearing, the starred wolves at night... It is always the toughest part. After we can set the game's difficulty, every mob can be quicker and tougher, and I just find out one single wolf bite is mostly fatal in hard or hardcore mode, not to mention that they are quick enough to have another. Moreover, I personally don't use bows, so I basically must not fail to retrieve my spear each time I aimed to the drakes. Every mistake can be a point of no return. Although the Mountain is challenging, it is also beautiful, solemn, full of dangers, which is intensely immersive. Each time I succeed in the Mountain calmly and efficiently I believe my Viking's skills are checked again.

Q: We noticed you only use the spear and never a bow, why is that?

A:
The reason I fight with a spear is mostly for efficiency. The key to a speedrun is efficiency: cost-effectiveness of food, armours, and weapons chosen. The difficulty of using bows is lower compared to spears. It works well against a few flying units in the game, especially the drakes. Very error-tolerant. However, they are more expensive to craft. Also the skill of bow levels up slowly. Spears, on the other hand, deal high damage with low crafting cost. They also have the potential of fighting against flying units. The skill of spears levels up quickly, which is more important because it is much easier to have a high level of spear, making it excellent for speedrunning.

However, it is demanding and difficult for many to master their spears, since the trajectory should be accurately calculated. Additionally, you have to reach and pick up the spear after throwing it, which is error-prone because after the throwing the spear might be lost forever. In general the spear is high risk, high reward. I always choose the spear as my "flying unit solution", because I have achieved high throwing accuracy and I always believe in my accumulated skills from thousands of hours of gameplay. Therefore, for me, using spears instead of bows in speedrun is the best option.

Q: How did you come up with the cart technique you used to rob the dvergr in the Mistlands?

A:
After the Mistlands update, I have started my research on everything from there. When I tried to deal with the dvergr and their settlements, I found out if the dvergr mages become hostile, their ice or fire magic can easily overwhelm the player at the current progression, based on its high attack frequency and high damage. As usual there are more than four dvergr in one settlement, so the mage should be included in most cases. Therefore I thought it might not be the intended way to fight against dvergr and rob them by brute force. Although getting "help" from the spawned seekers is an option, waiting for the seekers and dvergr consuming each other is slow, and the player would play a rather passive role, which is not a very effective solution in speedrun.

At the moment I have noticed the cart, which can bypass the ward in the dvergr settlement and nullify it by dealing "neutral" damage, without making the dvergr hostile. After the ward is destroyed this way, the dvergr will simply give up protecting their settlement, and the player can get the loot from there. Therefore I came up with the idea of using a cart to play pranks on the dvergr.
Just a small hotfix!

Patch notes:

* Fixed an issue that caused languages to not be displayed properly while changing language in-game
* Fixed character limit in chat window