Guide:Hardcore

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A ground enemy-proof main base.

Welcome to Hardcore! With only one life, your trusty tools, and the environment around you, you are ready to embark on a dangerous journey. Only two things are different, a special item, and you only have one life. Those are the only changes. However, you are now playing a much harder game. With only one life, you have to be more careful when it comes to traps, bosses, events, and just plain exploring. But do not worry. This guide will tell you many tips and tricks for surviving in the mortal plane.

  • This is a very hard difficulty, and if you make any mistakes, it could end the save permanently!

Shelter[edit | edit source]

Right away, build a shelter. You can use this to hide from enemies during the night. It is recommended to make multiple shelters so you always have a place nearby to restore health, manage your inventory and store your items. A good shelter should not have doors. During a Blood Moon, mobs can open doors and kill you very quickly. Instead, make a trapdoor (or platform) exit at the top of your base 2 blocks wide. This is big enough for you to get through but keeps almost all Demon Eyes out of your house. Also to make sure to have 1 block wide stubs at the top of your roof to prevent Zombies and other fighters from jumping into your house. If you put platforms against the inner part of your walls and hammer them once, you can make a 1-way door that you and projectiles can go out of the house, and enemies and other things can't get into it unless they can go through blocks. For the final base tip, a good way to keep all of your things in order is to name your chests. Keep potion ingredients and potions near your alchemy setup, and ores, bars, and gems near your anvil and furnace.

General Tips[edit | edit source]

  • Until you are geared up, do your early game errands at the time of day. Do not go out during the first few nights, especially not during a Blood Moon. In cases of a Blood Moon, make sure to block the entrances, so enemies cannot get in.
  • Get some health and mana restoring items. With just one life, you do not want to die out there.
  • Use Recall Potions to quickly get home if you are far from shelter, or if you are on low health and need to heal safely. Also, use a Magic Mirror if you have one. However, this does have a slight delay, so remember to allow for it.
  • Try to obtain armor, Mana Crystals and Life Crystals as soon as possible. They can be vital to your survival. However, try to keep your health below 200 until you are ready to fight the Eye of Cthulhu, due to the fact that it can spawn naturally after you reach 200 HP. If you get the 'Evil Presence' message and you're not ready, log out and log back in to prevent the Eye of Cthulhu from spawning, or to despawn it.
  • Use your NPCs! They all have helpful functions that you can use like shopping, helping with crafting, and healing. Additionally, since 1.3.0.1Desktop VersionConsole VersionMobile Version, NPCs also attack nearby enemies.
  • Play with friends! There is nothing better than someone to help you out and keep you company. They can also be in Hardcore mode for an even better experience.
  • Dangersense Potions can be vital for avoiding fatal traps.
  • Even if you don't plan to use a yoyo, using early game cobwebs to make a warding white string can significantly increase your defense.
  • Even if you have a Magic Mirror it's a good idea to carry a few Recall Potions, because their low teleportation delay can sometimes save your life!

Beginning Steps[edit | edit source]

  • Chop down trees to craft a Workbench and a Wooden Sword and/or a Wooden Bow. You may also might want to craft Wood armor if you are not confident.
  • Go left or right until you find a Desert or Tundra Biome. Chop down enough trees/cacti to craft full Cactus gear. Loot all chests you may find along the way.
  • Return to Forest biome and chop down trees until night. During the night, start constructing your NPC homes. Make sure you are completely enclosed in wood blocks while building, as it is very easy to die early on.
  • When it is day again, keep walking until you find a cave to explore. You should have torches from killing Slimes the previous day. Explore these caves for minerals and chests.

Early Milestone Goals[edit | edit source]

Class-specific tips[edit | edit source]

  • For the ranged class, Frostburn Arrows are your best friend. They deal 9 damage, 4 more damage than normal arrows, and cause a debuff that does 2 damage per tick that most mobs and bosses are vulnerable to.
  • For gunslingers, you have 2 main options. Your first option is to go to the Corruption or Crimson and smash a Shadow Orb or Crimson Heart to get the Musket or The Undertaker. These guns aren't very powerful but can give you access to the Arms Dealer, where, if you can farm up 35 Gold Coin, you can buy the Minishark. The second option is to go into the Jungle and search for Ivy Chests until you find a Boomstick, a powerful weapon that also gives you access to the Arms Dealer.
  • For melee users, you have a few options. One of them is to explore the surface and try to find an Enchanted Sword Shrine. This gives you access to the Enchanted Sword or the Arkhalis. A second option is to use Gravitation Potions and look for a Floating Island, which could give you a Starfury. You could also search in Underground Snow to look for an Ice Blade, but it is the lesser of the three. The last option is to use Boomerangs or Yoyos instead of swords, which could give you better range if you are unsuccessful in finding any of the swords listed earlier.
  • If you are going for the mage class, try to go out each night and collect Fallen Stars to get you to 200 mana before you take on any challenges. If you are careful, you can get some bombs, break a Shadow Orb or Crimson Heart, and wait for a Meteorite to spawn, and then blow it up to get Meteor armor and the Space Gun (which won’t consume mana while wearing the aforementioned armor). This gives you a very strong mage weapon and set of armor before fighting any bosses. Another option is to go to the Dungeon and look on the surface for a possibility for a Water Bolt. A Depth Meter (tells if the player is 0 feet underground) and Recall Potion (faster than the Magic Mirror) can help the player, avoid a death by Dungeon Guardians.
  • You should, at the the start of the game, go destroy trees and craft wooden swords, until you get a great modifier on it. It will give you a massive boost at the start.

Late Milestone Goals[edit | edit source]

  • When setting up an area for the Mechanical bosses, it is a good idea to make sure that it does not reach heights where Wyverns will start spawning.
  • Having Suspicious Looking Eyes can help greatly with defeating nighttime bosses due to the high amount of Hearts the Eye of Cthulhu drops. When fighting Plantera, Queen Bee can be used as an additional source of Hearts.
  • Due to the incredibly dangerous enemies in the post-Plantera Dungeon, it is best to achieve maximum health with Life Crystals and Life Fruits (start generating after the defeat of one Mechanical boss). Summoner builds may wish to wait until they have all of the accessories purchaseable from the Witch Doctor before entering the Dungeon or Jungle Temple.
  • After defeating Plantera, players can build a Truffle Worm farm to more quickly obtain one and summon Duke Fishron. Be careful, though; if you're not brave enough, try sticking Duke Fishron after you have some Martian Saucer gear from the Martian Madness event.
  • If manageable, the player can investigate and uncover as much of the map as they can during pre-Hardmode in order to pinpoint underground areas converted into Underground Hallow, Crimson, or Corruption Biomes upon Hardmode conversion. Stopping the rapid spread of these biomes helps preserve the Cavern layer from being altered (and can, as a result, prevent more difficult enemies from spawning and allow easier fishing). Unhindered, these can affect other Surface biomes such as the Snow biome if they spread far enough.