While stone and flint gear will get you through the early game of Valheim, you're going to need metal tools, weapons, and armor when setting out to tackle the game's more difficult areas. Not only is metal more durable than stone and flint, but it also does more damage to enemies and stands up better to attacks from strong foes. However, getting metal ore and smelting it into usable ingots isn't as easy as it often is in other survival games. Don't worry, though, because we're here with a handy guide on everything you need to know about metal ores, including how to find ore, mine it, smelt it, and (in some cases) craft new metals by mixing some metals with others.
Valheim ore guide: What you'll need
Before you set out to find metal ore, make sure you're prepared with the necessary equipment to explore for ore as well as mine and transport it. We recommend the following:
- A pickaxe. The first one you can obtain is the Antler Pickaxe, which requires 10x Wood and 1x Hard Antler from the Eikthyr boss.
- Plenty of food. Most areas with ore have enemies, so you'll want to keep your health topped up.
- A wooden shield and a weapon of some kind. You never want to be unable to defend yourself!
- A set of basic leather armor. This includes a helmet, tunic, and pants. Each armor piece requires x6 Deer Hide.
- If you want to search for ore in lands overseas, you can make a raft with 20x Wood, 8x Leather Scraps, and 10x Resin. You can put ore on the raft for transport.
Once you start to obtain some metals, you can create more advanced transports for ore transportation. These include the following:
- Carts (20x Wood, 10x Bronze Nails)
- Karve boats (x30 Fine Wood, x10 Deer Hide, x20 Resin, x80 Bronze Nails)
- Longship boats (Iron Nails x100, x10 Deer Hide, x40 Fine Wood, x40 Ancient Bark)
Valheim ore guide: How to find and mine ores
Each ore type is found in specific areas and locations in Valheim's different biomes. Here's where you can find all of the different ores in Valheim:
- Copper ore: Found in Black Forest biomes. Deposits look like massive mossy boulders with distinct streaks of copper in them. You can dig underground beneath the topmost deposit to find an additional deposit.
- Tin ore: Found in Black Forest biomes near bodies of water. Look for small rocks that have black gash-like marks in them to find deposits. There are usually several deposits clumped near one another.
- Iron scraps: Found in the Swamp biome within Sunken Crypts dungeons. The iron is obtained from muddy scrap pile obstructions in these dungeons. To enter Sunken Crypts, you'll need to kill The Elder boss in the Black Forest and take his Swamp Key. Additionally, iron scraps can rarely be obtained from killing Oozer enemies.
- Silver ore: Can be found in Mountains biomes underneath the ground. To find them, you'll need to obtain the Wishbone from the Bonemass boss in the Swamp and then equip it. As you travel the Mountains, dig below the ground whenever you see lots of green particles swirling around you and hear a dinging sound. The ore will be located here.
- Black metal scraps: These have a chance to drop from slain Fulings in the Plains biome. These enemies are very tough, so we recommend avoiding them until you have the other metals readily available.
To mine copper, tin, iron, and silver, you'll need a pickaxe. Just walk up to the source of the ore and whack it with your pickaxe until it breaks. When this happens, the ore will pop out and go into your inventory (assuming you have the appropriate space and carry weight). Silver ore requires the use of an iron pickaxe (3x Core Wood, 20x Iron), so don't try to mine it without one.
Valheim ore guide: How to smelt ores
To smelt the ore you collect, you're going to need to create two structures: a Charcoal Kiln and a Smelter. The former can be used to make coal for the Smelter, and the latter is what melts down the ore and turns it into bars for use in crafting. Both structures require the following:
- 20x Stone
- 5x Surtling Cores
Stone can be found on the ground or by hitting rocks with a pickaxe, while Surtling Cores are found in Black Forest dungeons and chests and can also be found by killing Surtlings in the Swamp biome.
Once you've placed both structures, start by making some coal by putting wood into the Charcoal Kiln. Take the coal and put it into one side of the Smelter, and then take the ore that you have and put it into the other side. Wait a bit for the Smelter to work its magic, and voila — you now have a usable bar of the ore that you put in!
Something important to note is that black metal scraps can't be smelted in the Smelter. Instead, you'll need a Blast Furnace, which is essentially a level two Smelter. You can make it with 20x Stone, 5x Surtling Cores, 40x Iron, and 40x Fine Wood.
Valheim ore guide: How to craft bronze
While every other metal in Valheim is obtainable right from the Smelter or Blast Furnace, bronze is a unique case since you can only get it by combining two other metals, copper and tin. To do this, you'll first need to make a Forge. To make a Forge, you'll need the following:
- 4x Stone
- 4x Coal
- 10x Wood
- 6x Copper
Once you've done that, place it in a sheltered area, similar to how you normally place a workbench you want to use. Then, walk up to the Forge and activate it to open the crafting menu. From here, you can make a bar of bronze with the following:
- 2x Copper
- 1x Tin
Notably, you can also make five bronze bars at once if you have the necessary amount of copper and tin. Once you've crafted your bronze, it can then be used to make tools, weapons, and armors like every other metal in Valheim.
Do you have any further questions about ore mining, smelting, and crafting in Valheim? Let me know if you do, and I'll be happy to answer them. Also, don't miss our guide on how to find, summon, and defeat every boss since you'll need to kill a few of them to get all of the ores in Valheim. Also, if you'd like some general basic tips, check out our beginner's guide to your first days and beyond in Valheim.
Valheim is available now in Early Access on Steam for $20. If you haven't checked it out yet, I highly recommend that you do. It's one of the best survival games on PC right now, and it's only going to get better as the developers add more features and content to it over time.
Survive and thrive
Norse-themed survival FTW
Valheim is a challenging yet incredibly fun survival game set in a world heavily inspired by Norse mythology. Build, craft, scavenge, and hunt your way to success.
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Brendan Lowry is a Windows Central writer and Oakland University graduate with a burning passion for video games, of which he's been an avid fan since childhood. You'll find him doing reviews, editorials, and general coverage on everything Xbox and PC. Follow him on Twitter.