Valheim: How To Cook Your Way Through The Cold Nights
You may have heard of Valheim, a Viking survival game that’s currently available on Steam in early access. Well, if you want to have a fighting chance at living through the many encounters you’ll face, you’ll want to go in armed with the knowledge of how to cook and eat the many foods available to you. The game is a challenging take on surviving in frigid lands swarming with trolls, skeletons, leeches, slimes, and more. You can even summon up huge bosses and take them on! If you’re just getting started, you should check out our guide to the early game here, and something a little deeper into the experience here.
Once you get the hang of the basics of cooking and eating in Valheim, the more advanced fare falls into place easily as you advance through your tech tree and base. At the beginning of the game, it’s likely your only experience with food at all will be from raspberries that you’ve pulled off of nearby bushes. In the game’s opening hour, you can probably expect to take on boars, deer, and necks (lizards). So, you’ve got some raw meat. What’s next?
First, you need to make a campfire. You probably already have one of those since you’re going to need one to place your bed down and have any kind of encampment. After that, you have to place a cooking rack on top of the fire. Easy enough, right? Clicking on the fire with raw meats and other cookables in your inventory will place them hanging above the fire. Now you need to make sure that you don’t leave the food on the fire for too long. There is an audio and visual cue when the meat is cooked, so be ready to pull it off when it’s done. If you want too long, your meat will become coal. There’s a few specific scenarios where you may actually want to convert your meat to coal, but in general you’re going to want it for eating.
Your character can have three different kinds of food buffs going simultaneously and you should strive to achieve that. Food buffs raise your max hit points, stamina, and regeneration, so you want to have the maximum amount possible to combine with your weapons and armor to enhance your survivability.
Early on, your survivability is going to be at its best with two different kinds of cooked meat (neck and raw) and some berries or mushrooms. As you continue to advance past the Meadow into the Black Forest and the Swamp, you can start making more potent foods like sausages. Before you can, you should absolutely consider making a cauldron once you have access to metals. With the cauldron, you can create the foundations for powerful mead. Before you get too deep into the systems that are going to offer up next tier of foods, you want to take advantage of one of the most potent offerings that can come from the cauldron, Queens Jam. With just a few handfuls of blueberries and raspberries, you will be the king of the lower tier zones!
After you get the hang of cooking, you’ll be whipping up powerful sausage in no time. Unlike many other survival games, you don’t actually *need* to eat in Valheim to survive, but wandering around with your base HP pool is incredibly risky and dangerous, so eating is basically only an upside and not a hunger meter that you need to frantically manage.