Terraria Beginner’s Guide, Part 2- Venture, into the darkness!

This guide is the second part of our Terraria guide (read more).

It has been  a long while, but here we are. The next part of our Terraria Guide. In the previous part we ended our day with exploring the local area, building our house, and happily locking away our load into chests we found, or created. Today, we should focus on something key to surviving, and prospering in Terraria, ores.

You can find most common ores in the surface. Copper, Iron, and sometimes Silver and Gold, have from time to time very small desposits where you start from. If you entered some of the caves or caverns littered around the map you would find some of the deposits within arm’s reach. But the surface is not where the big stuff is. You have to venture down! In order to succeed in your lengthy trip you need a healthy supply of three things. Wood, for platforms, torches and glowing sticks. At first, having 99 platforms will seem like a lot, but trust me, once you start digging down you will find the number insufficient.

A chaotic looking mineshaft.

It might look like a complete mess, but take note that with such a spread of platforms, I can get anywhere I want with ease. In addition, torches tell me where I have explored, or where I have I headed. It's order in chaos.

Now, that you have your tools, and necessities, you can begin digging!Of course, it is helpful if you found enough ore to make slightly better weapons, tools or armour. Healing potions would keep you alive, while other countless special potions would help in your exploration. Once you feel you are ready to take on the world, find a spot near your house, and start digging. Your mine shaft should have a width of two squares, with torches placed on the walls once in a while (so that you do not get lost, or fall down), meanwhile platforms should be placed on “jumping” height. Placing them on every square will be a waste of platforms, and with such a thin tunnel you need only one platform on either side.

So you dig… you dig, and you dig, and you dig. Do not throw away the dirt and stone, you might need it later on! On the way you will see caverns to the sides of you. Blinkroot will also light some areas, giving you a good guess as to where you can find an open area. When you find a vein up in the ceiling place a few platforms to reach it, then take them down. When you end up in a cavern with a very big drop, play it safe, place a few platform under you, so that you can steadilly go down. As time passes and you gather more and more ores, you will reach what is called the Stone layer. The music will change, but also the background image and enemies will differ. Now you will start meeting Black Slimes, Skeletons and Cave Bats. With your copper weapons they will be true horrors to behold… but if you had enough ore, make yourself an Iron Broadsword. Problem solved!

Iron Broadsword killing zombies.

Iron Broadsword in action. These zombies are no longer any threat. After all, it does double damage, compared to your starting short sword.

Some of you might had noticed that there are shortswords and broadswords. The key difference is how the weapons attacks. Broadswords swing (just like axes, picks and hammers), while shortswords stab. In the vast majority of cases you will want the broadsword over the shortsword, due to its arc and range. It is worth your while sacrificing your first few iron ingots for an iron sword, it will make life much simpler. In order to get all your basic crafting station you will also need an iron chain. Once you have that built a sawmill (that is what you needed the chain for), and then a Loom you have all you need to make yourself a bed. In order to make the bed you need wood (plenty of that around), but you will also need silk, which is made of cobwebs. If you gathered enough cobwebs to fill two inventory slots, you have more than enough. Turn it all into Silk at the loom, get some wood and place your bed. If you built your house properly (with a back wall) you will be able to set your spawn on the bed, rather than somewhere outside. All the excess silk can be used to decorate your house with flags! On the other hand, you might as well save it to make yourself some vanity items.

Wooden house, more and more looking like a tower.

My wooden residence, with an added bedroom.

If you cannot set your spawn to the bed, that means your house is incomplete somewhere… there is no real cure for that, other than checking the entire house for leaks (check behind the floors/walls/ceiling). Now, you have your spawn set. Venture back down for more ores! But, take note of any golden chests. These hold much better treasure, and items, than ordinary chests. They can also hold one item of great importance to you. The Magic Mirror, an item which will allow you to port back to your spawn, and costs you nothing, except mana. To get the necessary mana, gather ten fallen stars, turn them into a Mana Crystal and consume it. Voila, 20 permanent mana points. These will recharge when used. With the Magic Mirror you can now venture as deep as you want, and teleport back, risk free, if you are overloaded, or are in a dire situation.

Finding a Magic Mirror


With some magical items in place, as well as plenty of different ores your main focus should be getting a full set of golden armor, weapons and tools. Once you are fully equipped and ready you will be as ready, as you can be, to explore the rest of the map. Although you cannot feel entirely safe, you will notice you will lose less hp, and do more damage to the enemies. Take note, if you bump up your hp to 200, the eye of Cthulhu will spawn. If you have a quality bow, with plenty of arrows, it should pose no real problem. If you summoned it, and you feel completely unprepared… it is just plain bad luck!

Strange plants, the deeper you go.

Once you dig deep enough you will find glowing mushrooms. It does not only mean you are very far from the surface, but these mushrooms can be used in creating greater healing potions. Cut the big mushrooms (and the small ones) and you will get enough of them to make a number of highly useful and powerful potions.

Other potions and items which will be of great use in your journey… well, to be honest, all the items and potions are in some way useful. But, to name a few personal faveourites, let’s start with the grappling hook. All you need is a chain (which you can make) and a hook (which skeletons and piranhas drop). No more need for platforms to reach the ceiling, just press E, and a hook will shoot out, allowing you to connect to any surface. You can play around with being tarzan, but, to be honest, it is an excellent tool for exploring big caverns, and making sure you do not die horribly. The enchanted boomerang is a way of making sure that you always have a ranged weapon. It never gets used up, deals decent damage, and if you throw it right, can hit a few enemies at the same time. Among the potions, the featherfall potion is incredibly useful, when you run out of wood for platforms, and you want to explore just that one more cavern. The shine potion will allow you to work without the need for torches or glowing sticks. The Spelunker potion, is a must have, if you feel you have been out of luck for the past few kilometers of digging (it lightens up all ores, chests and vases).

Forging new armour for my character.

End of my second gaming session. I have a nice house, some decent gear... and terrible fashion. (here, I am wearing a silver helmet, iron chestplate and copper greaves)

During this stage, when you have to obtain all the gold you need for your armour, tools and weapons all you can do is remain patient. Once you have all of these tools, and gathered a number of different magical items will you be ready to move on… That means one of two things: Exploring further into the land, or fighting the Eye of Cthulhu.

Alex “WriterX” Bielski

This guide is the second part of our Terraria guide (read more).

You can't go any more "sandbox" than this.
Cons:Can get boring quickly.
Best with friends.
Game producer's website:RE-Logic
Official website:Terraria Website
Game available at:

About The Author

Aleksander "WriterX" Bielski
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Student of Psychology, he was identified as a Nut-Job even before he started the course. Having done some small work as a Modder for a number of titles, and worked as a Game Designer part-time, Alex now writes in third person. As Co-Owner and Editor of AlterGamer.com he aims high, while being armed only with a sling. In the future, he hopes to become a fully qualified Newspaper Editor, and purchase Google.

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