When progressing through Terraria, many players can be unsure of what they should do next and where they can go. Terraria is a open-ended game, where areas are only locked by your level of equipment. This progression guide is designed to provide a loose idea of where they should go for these players.
Also you should learn one important thing: Weapons > Armor. This means that the player should focus more on getting better offense than defense. Because of this, the early-game biomes do not have the "Recommended Armor" tab and have only recommended weaponry for Melee, Ranged and Magic.
 The Surface
New players should refer to this guide: Getting Started
The most important thing to do when starting a new world is building a shelter. Begin by collecting building materials, such as wood or stone. It is recommended that the shelter includes a Work Bench, a Chair, a Torch, and walls. This will ensure that the Guide makes this shelter his house, and will not wander out at night. Make a Wooden Sword, a Wooden Bow, a Wooden Hammer and some flaming arrows so that you have the means to survive the night. Alternatively, just stay inside and focus on building or digging.
If you decide to travel elsewhere rather than settle on your spawn, build a small shelter around your original spawn. When you die and respawn during the night, you can wait until morning for the monsters to despawn. While looking for the right place, you will usually find surface veins, mostly copper/tin and iron/lead. If you find enough of these metals, you can make an anvil and then a Copper/Tin Broadsword and a Copper/Tin Bow. Copper/Tin armor is completely skippable, as you will find better ores underground that you can make into better armor. Return to the shelter before the sun goes down.
It is recommended to stay inside at night. The monsters that come out at night can be very difficult for a new character. A bold player may be able to make a substantial amount of money by killing these monsters. This can be a very high risk, however, as it is easy to get overwhelmed. Zombies can "stack" on top of each other, making it look as if three or four zombies are only one. Unsuspecting players may try to kill the "single" zombie at their door, only to find that there are actually several more than they can handle. To prevent that, when a single zombie starts banging on the door, open the door and slay the zombie with your broadsword.
Many players will find it boring to sit still in a shelter for the whole night. Mining in a cave can be a viable alternative. Fewer monsters will be able to find their way into caves, and they tend to be easier to deal with inside. Mining at night can still be risky, however. Monsters can sometimes drop down on the player's head in caves, which can be very difficult to get out of. Avoid mining under off-screen ledges. It is recommended to start building a hellevator, and you will encounter some caves and veins on your way. But remember to put rope or platforms along the shaft, so that you can easily go up and down.
 Build a Base
For a more in-depth guide on building bases: Bases
A base can take anywhere from a single in-game day to more than an in-game week to complete, depending on the player's tastes. It is not necessary, however, to build the entire base right away. Waiting to build the majority of the base can be advantageous, as it will allow the player to use the large stock of stone they will end up gathering as a by-product of mining. Regardless of when or what the player builds, it is recommended to build houses for the Guide, Merchant and Nurse, a campfire below or above the base, and a space for storage and crafting before progressing.
 Surface Exploration
The surface has sparsely distributed iron/lead and copper/tin deposits. It is advantageous to the player to search for these ores. Chests can sometimes be found in the entrances of caves. The items they contain can be very useful for a new character. These chests will spawn in any surface biome but the treasures they contain are listed with the forest biome. A Spear is a perfect find, since it can hit an enemy multiple times and keep it away from you at any angle.
It is highly recommended to be cautious in snow and deserts, and STAY THE HECK AWAY from jungle, corruption and crimson. The Corruption, Jungle and Crimson surface biomes are mid-game biomes, and will be too difficult for a new character. The Ice Biome is just a slightly more dangerous surface biome and if you jump over the slimes, nothing will happen to you. But these biomes don't contain any special items. The more useful of the two is definitely Desert, where you can sometimes find the Pyramid, especially in large worlds. Grenades are very useful here so that you are able to kill the two monsters, Vulture and Antlion, in one hit.
 The Underground
For a more in-depth guide on mining: Mining Techniques
Once a satisfactory shelter has been completed, the player should begin mining. There are multiple methods of mining, each with its own advantages and disadvantages. Digging a hellevator can allow the player easy access to the deeper areas of their mine. Another popular method is to explore the caves and tunnels that generate naturally. When a player reaches a dead end in a cave, they can find other caves using light from torches or other tools, a technique called "cave hopping". This method can yield more rewards than the shaft method, but it can be harder to enter and exit this type of mine. Many players will use a combination of the two methods to suit their current needs. Optimally you should dig a shaft beneath your house, then explore all caves you come across.
It is recommended to have at least an iron sword or a bow before proceeding to the next layer. An upgraded pickaxe is also handy because of the small range of Copper Pickaxe. The player should try to find some Life Crystals while at this layer. Be sure to pack a lot of Torches and Glowsticks, if you already found some. You can also use Shine Potions and Night Owl Potions.
In this layer, the player should focus on finding Underground Cabins, golden chests, Gold, Platinum, Silver, Tungsten. Gems are very important too, as they allow you to make grappling hooks and staffs, which are powerful for this tier. Also you should search for as manyLife Crystals as possible. This layer is full of caves, so focus on spelunking rather than shaft-digging. In addition to collecting valuable ores and gems, Silt can be also good to collect. You can get gems from the Extracinator, which will greatly help you make a grappling hook.
The biggest threat here is not the monsters, but the traps: boulders and explosive traps can easily maul you if you are not careful. When you disarm a trap, hold on to the pressure plate: holding it will allow you to see wiring and thus automatically spot the traps. Also, you can easily plummet down to your death if you make a wrong move. Hold the Umbrella in your hand to safely descend long falls. Rope and Rope Coils may also be used to quickly and safely descend and ascend large caves.
When the player reaches the cavern layer, they should build a fourth NPC house. This should allow you to get the Demolitionist as soon as you find some Bombs or a Dynamite. A player may wish to opt out of getting the mining helmet, however, if they found an early source of Glowing Mushrooms, and they wish to use Shine Potions instead.
Avoid mining too deeply in this layer at this point in the game, the next layer after the caverns is the Underworld. If the player mines too closely to the Underworld, Underworld monsters will begin to spawn. Underworld monsters can be very difficult to deal with. If the player finds themselves being attacked by Fire Imps, it is highly recommended to turn back. As a rule of thumb, avoid mining down any further when the first lava pools are found.
 The Surface Revisited
Once the player obtains strong enough weapons many mid-tier biomes open up. These biomes contain crafting materials as well as other treasures. It is recommended to build any NPC houses that have not been built yet. There should be at least ten NPC houses at this time.
 Eye of Cthulhu
If the player meets all three of the following requirements, Eye of Cthulhu has a 1:3 chance of spawning each night:
- Eye of Cthulhu has not been defeated in the current world
- At least one player in the world has ten or more hearts
- Three NPCs are present in the world
Shortly before Eye of Cthulhu appears, the player receives the message "You feel an evil presence watching you". Note that leaving the game and reopening it at this point will cancel the fight. Many players prefer to fight Eye of Cthulhu on their own terms by using a Suspicious Looking Eye to summon it at the beginning of the night as the Eye has to be defeated by dawn. Ranged weapons such as Shuriken or a Bow and an arena (see the Terrain preparation section in the Guide: Eye of Cthulhu strategies) will make the fight a lot easier.
For more information, refer to Guide:Eye of Cthulhu strategies
 Eater of Worlds / Brain of Cthulhu
After Eye of Cthulhu is defeated, the player should fight either the Eater of Worlds or the Brain of Cthulhu, depending on whether the world has Corruption or Crimson respectively.
Either boss will spawn upon smashing every third Shadow Orb or Demon Heart in a world. It is also possible to spawn them using Worm Food or the Bloody Spine. However smashing orbs/hearts will drop treasures like Vilethorn and Ball O' Hurt that can help defeat the boss.
For more information, refer to Guide:Eater of Worlds strategies
For more information, refer to Guide:Brain of Cthulhu strategies
Once you have progressed far enough, two different events will start to trigger randomly.
 The Dungeon
After obtaining some combination of shadow, crimson, and meteor equipment, the player should explore either the underground jungle or the dungeon. The dungeon is preferred, as it contains more weapons and offensive items than the Jungle. The Dungeon can be found near the right or left edge of the map. To gain entrance to the dungeon, Skeletron must be defeated. To summon Skeletron, talk to the Old Man in front of the dungeon at night.
For more information, refer to Guide:Skeletron strategies
After Skeletron has been defeated in a world, players should be able to enter the dungeon unimpeded.
It is recommended to get all of the treasures in the dungeon, as they are all useful for further progression. Water Bolt can also be found on bookshelves (pictured).
 The Underground Jungle
After completing the Dungeon, the player should next go to the Underground Jungle. The Underground Jungle can be found by mining directly downward from the surface jungle.
 The Underworld
After exploring the Underground Jungle, the player should go to the Underworld (also referred to as "hell"). The Underworld can be found covering the entire bottom of the map. It is reached by digging down from the caverns.
Although the Underworld is theoretically the most difficult biome in pre-hardmode Terraria, mining Hellstone is reasonably easy and safe and can be done with relatively low-level equipment, especially with the aid of Obsidian Skin potions and Obsidian Skull. Water Walking potions are also very helpful, allowing you to walk on lava, and Night Owl potions do a great job of lighting up hell.
 Before Summoning the Wall of Flesh
Defeating the Wall of Flesh will activate hardmode. Once a world has entered hardmode, there is no way to change the world back to normal mode. There is no turning back once the Wall of Flesh has been defeated. Hardmode is very difficult and will make what were once menial tasks very difficult and tedious. It is highly recommended that the player make as many preparations as possible before they summon the Wall of Flesh.
The following is a checklist of things to be done before the Wall of Flesh is summoned:
- Obtain Maximum Health. If the player has not already done so, gather Crystal Hearts until the Life Bar has 20 hearts (400HP).
- (Magic Users only) Obtain Maximum Mana. Any player that uses spells (other than the Magic Mirror) should gather Fallen Stars until the Mana Bar has 10 Stars. Note: Magic-user oriented gear will often add Mana Stars to the player's maximum mana. Ensure that the mana bar has 10 stars without any magic enhancing items equipped.
- Gather Underworld-Tier Equipment. This must include a Molten Pickaxe. Other equipment will depend on personal tastes and can include but is not limited to: Molten Armor, Fiery Greatsword, Flamarang, Molten Fury, Phoenix Blaster, Sunfury, Flower of Fire, Flamelash, Demon Scythe and Dark Lance. Certain characters may opt to use Shadow Armor, Meteor Armor, Necro Armor, or Jungle Armor instead of Molten Armor. The Night's Edge is recommended over the other pre-hardmode swords if one has the resources to obtain it.
- Gather useful accessories and miscellaneous items, such as: Hermes Boots, Lucky Horseshoe, Cobalt Shield, Band of Regeneration, Band of Starpower, Nature's Gift, Feral Claws, Ivy Whip, and Magic Mirror. Many of these accessories can be combined at the Tinkerer's Workshop.
- Gather materials. Materials such as Copper and Iron will be needed to craft the items that summon mechanical bosses. Iron Ore and Gold Ore are used in Ironskin Potions and Spelunker Potions, respectively. Other materials, such as Wood, Stone, and Sand, should be stockpiled.
- Gather potion ingredients. In hardmode, potions like Healing Potions, Ironskin Potions, and Regeneration Potions can be essential to survival. Other potions can also be useful, depending on the equipment setup the player is using. Gather a large stock of potion ingredients. Consider creating "farms" for more important ingredients. For more information on farming, see Guide:Gardening.
- Search for Demon Altars. Many Demon Altars can be found in the corruption, so explore each corruption in the world. Dig tunnels to visible Demon Altars. They need to be easily accessible when hardmode begins.
- Consider creating quarantines. Corruption and Hallow biomes are very dangerous, and can spread and "ruin" natural biomes. Quarantining the natural biomes can protect them from the corruption/hallow. For more information on how to do this, read Guide: Containing the Hallow/Corruption
- Pick out a set of weapons and accessories, and reforge them. Defense is arguably the most valuable accessory stat for hardmode. Look for weapon stats that increase weapon damage and speed, or decrease mana cost. For more information about item prefixes, see Reforge.
- Consider farming money. Reforging Hardmode weapons is prohibitively expensive. Some vendors sell new, more expensive items in Hardmode. For more information on farming money, see Guide:Making money.
Ensure that all of the necessary preparations are made. Again, there will be no turning back once the Wall of Flesh is defeated. Anything that is not finished now will be much harder to do later.
 Wall of Flesh
Once Wall of Flesh is defeated you will receive a message which says "The ancient spirits of light and dark have been released." You have now entered Hardmode.
Destroying the Wall of Flesh causes drastic changes in the world. A new biome, called the Hallow, covers a significant portion of the surface, and reaches deep underground. A large area has also been covered with corruption and extends deep below the surface. New, stronger monsters inhabit many of the biomes in the world, making them much more dangerous than before. The most dangerous monsters are those that live in the Underground Corruption, Underground Crimson, and Underground Hallow. Extreme caution is advised when exploring this new world. Enemy health goes up drastically, attack skyrockets, and even Demon Scythes may only do 10-20 damage to enemies with +100 health. YOU WILL DIE (unless you are a seasoned player, but in that case you wouldn't be reading this guide ;). It's not called hardmode for nothing. As stated before, use extreme caution.
Consider fighting the Wall of Flesh multiple times before proceeding. Many of the Wall of Flesh's drops can be useful for Hardmode.
The next main objective is to kill the three mechanical bosses: The Twins, The Destroyer, and Skeletron Prime. However, a player with equipment from normal mode will find themselves significantly outclassed by these mechanical bosses. Any player who wishes to fight these bosses should take time to gather Hardmode gear and accessories. Most of this gear is crafted from the new Hardmode ores, Cobalt / Palladium, Mythril / Orichalcum, and Adamantite / Titanium. However, these ores do not initially exist in a Hardmode world. They must be spawned by destroying Demon Altars or Crimson Altars with the Pwnhammer.
 Smashing Altars
The easiest place to find altars is in the original Corruption or Crimson biomes, at the bottom of chasms. Be prepared for new enemies in the desert and at night. The Hallow will need to be crossed in order to reach some of the biomes on the map. In rare cases, a Corruption biome can be converted to Hallow upon initiation of hardmode. These biomes still contain Demon Altars.
Once the player reaches the corruption or crimson, they should enter the correct chasm quickly. The chasms are much less exposed than the surface. Destroy altars methodically. Each time an altar is destroyed, wraiths will spawn and attack the player. Take time to kill the Wraiths after breaking each altar to avoid getting overwhelmed, or quickly smash a few and teleport back home (not recommended).
Each altar destroyed will spawn ore in various places throughout the world, spawning them more densely deeper down. The first altar destroyed will spawn Cobalt / Palladium. The second altar destroyed will spawn Mythril / Orichalcum. The third altar destroyed will spawn Adamantite / Titanium. The pattern will repeat with additional altars destroyed, spawning more Cobalt, then more Mythril, then more Adamantite. It is advantageous to destroy as many altars as possible before proceeding to mine the new ores. Take time to explore the chasms and destroy any altars found in them. Note, however, that each altar destroyed may spawn a new block of Ebonstone, Crimstone, or Pearlstone somewhere in the world, causing the respective biomes to spread from another location.
 Mining Hardmode Ores
Once enough ore has been spawned, the player should begin mining Cobalt/Palladium with a Molten Pickaxe. Mythril/Orichalcum and Adamantite/Titanium can not be mined with normal mode pickaxes. Proceed with extreme caution. The most difficult biomes in Hardmode are found underground. The player should bring a stock of Ironskin potions, Regeneration potions, and Spelunker potions to use as they mine. If the player created a hellevator in normal mode, they should use it to access the lower layers quickly. Hardmode ores are more abundant deeper underground.
It can be very difficult to survive long enough in Hardmode biomes to mine enough ore. If the player finds they are having difficulty mining, they should consider mining in the Underground Jungle or look for ores on the ceiling of the Underworld. Both of these biomes have the same mobs as they did pre-Hardmode, making them considerably safer than almost anywhere else in the world.
Aim to upgrade to a Cobalt Drill or Palladium Drill as quickly as possible. The Cobalt Drill can mine Mythril/Orichalcum. The first 100 Mythril/Orichalcum ore mined should be used to craft a Mythril Anvil and then a Mythril Drill (or their Orichalcum counterparts). The Mythril Drill can mine Adamantite/Titanium (as can the Palladium Drill, letting you get a head start if you had Palladium instead of Cobalt). The first 30 Adamantite ore mined should be used to create an Adamantite Forge. Upgrading to an Adamantite Drill or Titanium Drill isn't crucial, as it does not grant access to any new ores.
Be mindful when opening chests. A seemingly innocuous treasure chest may be a Mimic posing as a chest. Mimics will chase the player when they approach or when attacked. A good approach is to shoot any chests with a ranged weapon before opening them. This will cause any Mimics to break their ruse and attack.
Use any leftover ore to upgrade armor, then weapons, and the chainsaw last. Keep mining until enough Adamantite or Titanium is collected to craft a full set of armor, and any weapons or tools the player may want.
 Collecting Souls
Collecting souls (and other miscellaneous items) is the last task the player should complete before fighting the mechanical bosses. There are three types of souls dropped by normal monsters: Soul of Light, Soul of Night, and Soul of Flight. Soul of Light can be obtained from any monster found in the Underground Hallow. Soul of Night can be obtained from any monster found in the Underground Corruption or Crimson. Soul of Flight can be obtained from Wyverns. The order in which the player obtains these souls does not matter. However, it can be advantageous to gather Souls of Flight first, as the Wings can be very useful when navigating the Underground Hallow or Underground Corruption.
 Soul of Flight
Wyverns can be found at very high altitudes, at around the same level as Floating Islands. Look for Wyverns on Floating Islands, as it is much easier to fight them this way. Another popular method is to fight them in the air using Gravitation potions.
Souls of Light can be found by killing enemies in the Underground Hallow. Underworld Enemies spawned below the Underground Hallow will also drop Souls of Light. Keep a stock of Regeneration potions and Ironskin potions when exploring this biome. The easiest way to deal with hallowed enemies is to grapple to the ceiling and shoot at them with a ranged weapon. The opposite is true when dealing with Illuminant Bats. Drop to the ground and swing a melee weapon to deal with them. Try to gather crystal shards while looking for souls. Try to gather at least 50 souls, although more is better. If the Hallow in your world went through a Spider Nest, you can also farm the spiders, taking advantage of their fast spawn rate, for Souls of Light.
Souls of Night can be found by killing enemies in the Underground Corruption and Crimson. Underworld Enemies will also drop Souls of Night if they spawn below the Underground Corruption or Crimson. Much of the same rules apply with this biome. Use Ironskin and Regeneration potions when exploring. Try not to stay in one place for too long in this biome. Clingers and Corruptors can both shoot projectiles, and World Feeders can easily attack a stationary player. Make use of the Rocket Boots and/or Wings to dodge projectiles and keep moving around. Gather at least 50 souls, more is better. Look for Cursed Flames or Ichor while gathering souls. Also, the spider nest farming method works well for Souls of Night too.
 Miscellaneous Items
There are a few other important items not mentioned above.
- Pixies from the surface Hallow will drop Pixie Dust, which is needed to make Greater Healing Potions, or combined with Unicorn Horns to make Holy Arrows.
- Mummies from Corrupted Desert will drop Dark Shards; Mummies from Hallowed Desert will drop Light Shards. Collect these to craft the Dao of Pow.
- Molds have an extremely rare chance to drop from enemies in the five main biomes (Hallow, Corruption, Crimson, Jungle, and Snow). They cannot be used just yet, but should be held onto due to their extreme rarity.
- Mimics can appear in just about any biome. Look for Mimics using Hunter Potions. Hunt for mimics until one drops a Philosopher's Stone.
 The Three Mechanical Bosses
Once you have a stockpile of the various hardmode resources, it's time to begin preparing to defeat the first three hardmode bosses. Each must be summoned with an item that can be crafted or dropped by enemies. It's also possible for one to spawn on its own at sunset, though the player will probably not be able to defeat it unless they are well prepared.
 Recommended Equipment for Mechanical Bosses
Following is a list of equipment recommendations for use against the mechanical bosses. This is not an exhaustive list; other items may prove to be effective. This list assumes no Hardmode bosses have been defeated yet:
Recommended Armor: Titanium armor with Titanium Helmet
Recommended Weapons: Laser Rifle, Flamelash,or Crystal Storm/Golden Shower. (Golden Shower works extremely well against the Destroyer when you aim the arc at the arc of the Destroyer.) Also, the Crystal Storm being the Mana Megashark of the game works very well against all hardmode bosses.
Recommended Armor: Titanium armor with Titanium Headgear
Melee characters tend to be less effective against Hardmode bosses. Players who wish to use melee weapons against Hardmode bosses should fight the Destroyer first. After killing the Destroyer, they should farm it for a while to maximize the chance for a Solar Eclipse to happen, then when it happens use the Battle Potion and a Water Candle to maximize the mob spawns and therefore, chances for the Death Sickle, which does well against all hardmode bosses. Melee users also should craft Cursed or Ichor flasks to help with the bosses.
Recommended Armor: Titanium armor with Titanium Mask
 Building a Hardmode Arena
Proper terrain preparation is almost completely essential to successfully defeat all three mechanical bosses. Players who intend to solo the hardmode bosses will find the task very challenging without an adequate arena.
For solo players, build a very long bridge out of wood platforms. The bridge should be at least 1000 platforms long, but 2500 is recommended. Build the bridge a large distance from the ground; the ground should not be visible from any part of the bridge. Place blocks at each end of the bridge to prevent running off of the sides.
For team players, the arena can be much shorter. A team arena can be between 250-500 platforms long, but should also have 2-3 separate rows. Space the rows so they are not too close together, but are reachable with rocket boots.
 Fighting the Mechanical Bosses
The Destroyer is arguably the easiest of the three bosses, and should be fought first. The Destroyer has a chance of spawning naturally at sunset with the message "You feel vibrations deep below..." It can also be summoned by using a Mechanical Worm at night.
As of 1.2, hallowed equipment doesn't require boss souls, only Hallowed Bars, which you can farm up from the Destroyer. This means that the next 2 hardmode bosses can be easily skipped - especially considering that the Flamethrower and Magical Harp are seemingly underpowered compared to something like Death Sickle. Rainbow Rod is useful, though.
The next 2 bosses are roughly the same at the level of difficulty, so you it's up to you to decide who to fight now. It's recommended to fight the Twins before Skeletron Prime, since they yield a very useful magic weapon called the Rainbow Rod, and, as said before, Flamethrower is underpowered compared to other weapons of this tier.
The last of the three hardmode bosses are the Twins. This boss is the hardest of the three for most players, and should be defeated last. The Twins have a chance of spawning at sunset with the message "This is going to be a terrible night..." They can also be summoned by using a Mechanical Eye at night.
 Return to the Underground Jungle
Once any mechanical boss has been defeated, new challenges unlock, and the player gains access to new materials to work with, starting with the souls and bars dropped by the boss. Hallowed Bars can be used to craft Hallowed Armor and several melee weapons, but most importantly the Drax or Pickaxe Axe which will be used to harvest the next tier of ore. The new souls (Might, Fright, and Sight) are used to craft 2-3 new weapons and tools each.
Once any mechanical boss is defeated, changes are made to the Underworld and the Underground Jungle, and a new event has a chance of occuring.
When a Pirate Invasion spawns or is summoned using a Pirate Map, a message will appear saying "Pirates are approaching from the (East/West)!" When the Pirates' initial wave reaches the spawn, their arrival is announced with "The Pirates have arrived!" See Pirate Invasion for more info and tips.
Also found in the underground jungle is a mysterious purple bulb. Destroying this bulb with a drill or pickaxe summons the boss Plantera.
Upon defeating Plantera, the message "Screams are echoing from the dungeon..." appears, and powerful new enemies are added to the dungeon. The boss also drops the Temple Key, which is used to open the Jungle Temple.
 Lihzahrd Temple
At the bottom of the Lihzahrd there is a boss room with a lihzahrd altar. Using a lihzahrd power cell on it summons the Golem.
 Return to the Dungeon
 The Pumpkin Moon
 The Frost Moon
|Getting Started • Crafting 101 • Mining Techniques • Bases • Wiring|
Ideas • Gardening • Travel • Making Money • Making Liquid • Arenas • PvP
Eater of Worlds • Brain of Cthulhu • Eye of Cthulhu • Queen Bee • Skeletron • Wall of Flesh
The Destroyer • The Twins • Skeletron Prime • Plantera • Golem