Valheim can be quite the intensive game. Between building monumental structures and slaying beasts of Norse myth, it can be tough to find some downtime. Fishing gives your Viking a chance to lay down arms and kick back, while earning you a meal. Fish are an ingredient for some top-tier dishes, so it’s a pastime worth doing every now and then. In this article, I’ll be explaining the ins and outs of Valheim fishing, and you’ll be angling in no time.
Why start fishing in Valheim?
Fishing isn’t for everyone, so allow me to sell the merits of taking up a rod. In the 10th realm, your Viking will need a hearty diet in order to take on tougher enemies. With fishing, you will have access to a safe, replenishable food source quite early on. At the moment, Valheim offers two seafood dishes with fish as the key ingredient.
The first and most accessible is cooked fish. This requires a fire and cooking station, taking roughly 20 seconds to cook through. Eating it will give you a solid 45 health and 15 stamina for 1200 seconds, which is a huge boost early on in the game.
The second dish takes a bit more preparation, requiring a couple of trips. You’ll need to mine some tin in the Black Forest, then journey to the Plains for some barley. For tips on how to explore these biomes safely, check out our Valheim progression guide. Once you have the ingredients, toss two fish and four barley into the cauldron and you’ll have a fish wrap. This provides your Viking with a boost of 70 health and 23 stamina, putting it in the top three for health.
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Where to find a fishing rod and bait
Neither fishing rods nor bait can be crafted in Valheim. Instead, you’ll need to take a trip to the merchant, Haldor. He tends to spawn in a Black Forest somewhere near your starting island, though if you’re unlucky, you’ll have to make quite the voyage to find him. Head over to him with a bulging coin purse, or at least 400 gold. With it, you can buy the fishing rod for 350, and have a good stock of bait.
If you’re having trouble getting the cash, take a trip to the burial chambers or sunken crypts, if you found a swamp. Lots of valuables can be found inside, which can be sold to Haldor for a good amount. You should have enough after one or two expeditions.
How to get started with Valheim fishing
Armed with your fishing rod and a pocketful of bait, it’s time to catch your first fish. Head over to your nearest fishing hole, or take yourself out onto the deep blue. You can catch fish pretty much anywhere, but it helps to have a clear view of them. It’ll make it easier to reel in your supper.
Once you’re in position, simply equip your fishing rod and cast off with a left-click. The longer you hold it, the farther it goes. Try to aim in the general area of the fish, but not too close. If the bob lands next to them, they will flee. Otherwise, you’ll simply have to wait. A fish will get curious sooner or later, and you’ll have them hooked if they take the bait. Once this happens, right-click to start reeling it in. Be sure to pick up the fish after it’s out of the water. Wait too long and you risk it hopping back into the water, leaving you without both fish and bait.
Fishing takes a decent chunk of stamina, so be sure to eat some stamina-boosting foods before your trip. The higher your fishing skill, however, the slower the stamina drain. With enough fishing experience behind you, any catch will be a cinch.
Depending on the fish, you can earn one, two, or four pieces of raw fish. How likely you are to find them is somewhat dependent on your fishing location. The two smaller fish, being perch and pike respectively, can be found almost anywhere shallow. For best results, check out rivers and around the edge of lakes. You may also find them around the coast. The largest fish, tuna, is a little rarer. While tuna can be found in shallow waters, they seem to be much more common out in deeper areas. You won’t necessarily have to sail out into the open ocean; a simple pier should do fine for easy access. However, if you do plan on a deep-sea journey, you will be amply rewarded. Just be sure to bring a bow too.
Valheim fishing – hunting with a harpoon
There is another method of fishing, one that trades in your fishing rod for a hardy harpoon. This is considerably riskier, and you’ll likely want a longship and a good bow at hand before delving in. But, along with greater risk comes a much greater reward.
Your prey when going harpooning are serpents, a tough and damaging sea monster that drops ingredients for the best dishes currently in the game. Additionally, you can fashion their scales into a decent tower shield, and decorate your house with trophies, though they are an acquired taste.
Catching a serpent can be difficult for two reasons; spawns and damage. Serpents can only spawn in deep water, indicated by the Ocean biome. Your best bet here is to find a decent stretch of Ocean flanked by coastline. Sail up and down the stretch of Ocean until you find one, then you can begin the hunt. For best results, set sail at night and during a storm. Serpents seem to spawn more readily at these times. The second problem when hunting serpents is their damage. The farther you are from the coast, the longer the serpent will have to attack your boat. Too long, and you’ll be hunted instead.
Once you find a serpent, sail in close and harpoon it. Then, head straight for the nearest coast. You may need to use a half sail for part of the return trip, as going too fast will break your line, allowing the serpent to escape. As soon as you hit the coast, hop out and beach the serpent. Frostner is especially useful here, as the ice will freeze the serpent and kill it quickly. If not, equip your best weapon and slaughter the beast. Take your rewards and celebrate the successful hunt with some briny cuisine.