A guide to help players who are up for a challenge play against the stepping stones of Terraria. Indulge in the fact that you hit hardmode before you did any real spelunking! Complete Pre-Hardmode in less than 3 hours!
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This guide is for experienced players who thought expert mode was easy. You'll be spending a lot of time jumping into situations you aren't equipped for, and will likely be easily overpowered. Don't try this if you can't take it.
Hopping into your world, you must act immediately. You have 15 precious minutes until the sun goes down, so spend your time exploring. smash pots and loot chests, but don't travel into any caves. Try to get one of the powerful early game weapons: the Spear, the Boomerang, the Blowpipe, or the Wand of Sparking. these all do about 8 damage, and can are definetly better options than a copper shortsword or wooden broadsword.
Now, night has come.
If you're playing in expert, your best option may be to put yourself in a box. however, you may want to make a shelter, including some NPC houses. You should build 3-4 now, for the most important NPCs. (Guide, Merchant, Demolitionist) or, maybe you can try to survive the night. This can be a very beneficial endeavor, often earning you multiple gold coins. Not only that, but zombies can drop shackles, a helpful accesory, and more importantly, the Zombie Arm. this weapon does high damage with high speed, and is comparable to even the silve/tungsten Broadsword.
Hopefully you found some grenades (and didn't use them), because with enough luck the demolitionist will show up. buy about 20 bombs, put your gold somewhere safe, and dive into the Corruptions / Crimsons chasms. Blow up 1-2 Shadow Orbs/Crimson Hearts, to obtain a gun and one of the other useful weapons or accesories. Now that you have a gun, you can do a lot of damage to your enemies. you'll want the Arms Dealer to move in, so make sure you have an open house. Consider buying the Minishark, and definetly buy at least a stack of bullets. Now that you've destroyed some of those big orbs/hearts, it's time to do some real progression. Not all of these things need to happen, and not in this order, but they are your best options.
- Wait for a meteorite to fall and mine it out with bombs/dynamite.
- Challenge the EoW/BoC and make some armor and maybe a pickaxe out of their drops.
- Dive into the Jungle, and consider taking on the Queen Bee.
- Fight off the inevitable Goblin Army attack, and find the Goblin Tinkerer.
- Fight Skeletron and loot the dungeon. (Honestly the Dungeon is totally optional!)
- Dig (or bomb) a hellavator.
- Explore hell, loot Shadow Chests, and build a looooooonnnnnnng bridge for the WoF fight.
- Fish for a Reaver Shark, and save the crates for later.
Now, your Pre-Hardmode journey has come to its end. The Wall of Flesh awaits you! You should have Hermes Boots (or a minecart track) that go a decent length. Some of your best bets for this fight include:
- Meteorite Armor and the Space Gun.
- Necro Armor and the Minishark/Phoenix Blaster.
- Molten Armor.
- Molotov Cocktails / Grenades (Bouncy grenades have higher damage!)
- Water Bolt.
As much as I'd love to say that Hardmode is an expansive and option-filled stage of the game, it's quite linear. You're forced to fight the Mechanical Bosses so you can fight Plantera so you can fight Golem so you can trigger the Celestial Events, fight the Moon Lord, etc.
However, sometimes, you can get into the Lihzard Temple without defeating the Mechanical bosses or Plantera. You can look this up yourself, because I'm lazy however it can be extremely dangerous. Of course, that's what this guide is about, but keep in mind if you skip Plantera and you skip the Mechanical bosses, you have no chance to get Spectre armor, no way to get anything made of Hallowed Bars, and limited weapon options. However, Golem can be an easy fight. If you succeed, 1. You're really good at the game, nice job. 2. The real challenge is over.
Consider fighting the Pirate Invasion or Duke Fishron at this time, and advance to the Moon Lord. Defeat it, and claim its heart for a prize!