Tag Archives: The Elder

Battling The Elder in Valheim

Having set ourselves up with a portal to an outpost close to The Elder, all we had to do was get together and fight him.

Of course, having gone into the Eikthyr fight after reading some “it’s easy” comments, I was a bit paranoid.  But I had an opportunity.  Having prodded Liore, formerly of the Herding Cats blog and the Cat Context podcast, and her crew about the game, they jumped on board with it, rolling up their own server.  So I have been over there to visit and build things now and again, though Valheim is one of those games where there is always a bunch of things to do, so playing on two servers can be a bit much.

However, thanks to the youthful enthusiasm of Corr, whom some will remember from the now dormant Fantasy Movie League runs, they quickly caught up to our level of progress and they were looking to slay The Elder on Saturday, while we were not going to get together for the event until Sunday, so I had a chance for a practice run.

I put my first character, Vikund, onto their server… though again, having two characters is like having two servers at times, it just doubles the things you want to do… because he had okay equipment.  I upgraded him to a fine bow and made sure he had a stack of fire arrows and a stack of flit arrows.  I did this because Corr had done some research and came back saying that melee is bad, ranged is good for this fight.

So we got together and rolled on out to the site of The Elder, three ancient seeds in hand, the requirement to summon him.  The Cats had a base close to the alter, so it was a short run.  We setup around the place, each of us taking a pillar to shoot from as that was alleged to be solid enough to block the ranged attacks we would be facing.

Setting up with the cats

Corr threw in the seeds and the battle began.

As with Eikthyr, you get the big boss health bar on the screen so everybody can see the progress at taking them down.

The Elder shows up

Fire arrows nicely set him ablaze and put a little DOT damage on him for effect, though I wouldn’t swear to them necessarily being better than flint arrows.  I am not sure it the DOT effect stacks or not, for example.

The fight was very active, and there was a lot of running about and avoiding attacks.  He summoned some greys in the back half of the fight and I think everybody besides Corr died at least once.  But the run back was easy and you just pick up your stuff and carry on.  Victory was inevitable.  Once slain, his head was brought back to the henge to be displayed on its anointed hook.  A celebratory screen shot or three was taken.

Whatever you do, nobody look at the camera

So I came away from that with the blush of optimism.  Hell, I was nearly full on Sir Robin at the Bridge of Death declaring, “That was easy!”

When the next day came we spent a full day cycle at our main base gearing up, upgrading, grabbing food, and collecting the health potions that had been cooked in the cauldron then simmered in the fermenter.  As night fell we got into our beds for a night’s rest.

Skronk/Fergorin has invented the footlocker in Valheim

When the new day dawned we went through the portal to the outpost and ran over to the altar of The Elder.  We got a bit wet on the way because our main gate opened onto some standing water.  I have since fixed that with the hoe.

Dripping wet still on arriving

I had the seeds and had explained what I had seen the previous day.  The sun was rising and for once it didn’t look like rain.  We spread out, each taking a pillar and then I went up and put the ancient seeds in the fire, summoning The Elder.

Time for The Elder to rise and shine

The fight started off as expected.  We started peppering him with arrows and he lit up nicely when hit with fire arrows.  We dodge the tendrils he throws your was and stayed clear of the roots as well as we could.   I think we had an early death, but the run back was quick.  And then things started to derail.

First, there were the greys, who seemed to be out in force.  So there was time out to turn and take them down.

Then there was the troll.  I mentioned the troll cave near the outpost and my suspicions that its presence foretold future spawning of trolls.  Well, now was apparently that time.

So we were shooting The Elder and kiting the troll… when the second troll wandered into the fight.  So, two trolls to deal with.

Kiting a troll

I had been doing pretty well until the second troll showed up.  I tried to kite him away from the fight so I could safely set him up and kill him.  However, he had other ideas.

The troll kills me instead

Deaths began to mount and it became clear that dying by the altar was going to make getting your stuff back to resume the fight difficult.  My corpse, having kited the troll down to the water, was a relatively easy recovery.  Both Crowbar and Unna had problems at points getting to their gear.

And then the skeletons showed up.

Unbeknownst to me there was a burial chamber just over the rise from the altar and somebody got too close to it and brought the skeletons who were guarding it into the fight.  They were not a huge threat, but they just added to the chaos on the field.

We died some more, but eventually got a handle on things and managed to kill off both of the trolls and were able to return to The Elder as night fell.

The Elder, on fire, shooting his tendrils attack as the sun goes down

Then, of course, the greys came again and the battle carried on, but as night came one, it was clear we were going to take it.  We had managed to brute force our way through a variety of unexpected turns.  But this is the afterlife, so “live, die, live again” is par for the course.  I have to think this explains the trolls and the greys constantly showing up.

The Elder defeated

That was a hell of a fight.  On death The Elder dropped four swamp dungeon keys, which get you access to… dungeons in the swamp biomes.  That is important because that, as I understand it, is where one collect iron for the next layer of crafting.  We stopped and collected ourselves and bits and pieces all over the place, then took a victory shot in front of the rune tablet that gives you the vague instructions related to summoning The Elder.

Again, nobody look at the camera, it might steal your soul

I love that there is a little Crowbar death marker behind us.  I could have cropped that out, but felt it was better with it in the background.  Also, I think the death markers are pretty cool.  They sit there glowing and bubbling, waiting for your return.  They even float on water… which I will get to in another post.  It is the afterlife.  Why shouldn’t we have happy little markers?

We also got a trophy for The Elder.  We ran that back to our main base and hung it up on the appropriate hook, so now we have defeated two of the bosses that Odin set us to get.

Trophies in the night

Having that gives us access to the next buff, which for The Elder is enhanced speed at cutting down trees… which seems like something from the ironic punishments division of hell.  I don’t know.  Eikthyr’s buff gave us enhanced stamina for swiftness, like a deer, while The Edler gave us the ability to murder his children more efficiently.  Go figure.

Anyway, with keys in hand, we now needed to go find a swamp biome, as we had, so far, not seen one.  Time for more exploration.

Addendum:

Bhagpuss beat me to a post about defeating The Elder, but I’ve done it twice now!

Getting to The Elder in Valheim

Valheim has its sandbox, base building, and maintenance task elements.  I think Skronk and I spent a good four hours in the game on Friday night just pottering around and doing “things” that were not exactly epic, but which kept us busy and engaged until the clock had gone past midnight.

But there is still a story and a through line that the game expects you to eventually follow, holding back on crafting upgrades by way of incentive to get you to leave your base tweaking and look for something besides more copper nodes.

Previously we defeated Eikthyr, the lightning horned stag, which got us the antler pickaxe and opened the way to the bronze age for us and our obsession with copper nodes.

The trophy hung

Now, as we have begun to sate our thirst for bronze… there are only so many items to make and upgrade… iron is the next item on the list.  But to gain access to iron you need to defeat The Elder, the next boss on the list.

Which means you have to find his altar.

Fortunately, that is pretty easy.  At the end of some of the burial chambers you will find a rune that, when activated, marks the location of The Elder on you map.  Our map… in this case Skronk’s map… showed about the limits of our exploration on the island where we started, with our main base being at the southern tip, and the Black Forest base about a day’s sail on a raft to the south.

Skronk map

The marker for The Elder was across the water from the northernmost tip of the west coast of our island and at least as far over the water as our Black Forest base was to the south.  That was something of a journey.

However, we had not been wasting all that tin and copper on cauldrons and knives.  80 bronze nails, 30 fine wood, and some resin and deer hides will get you the Karve, the upgraded water craft.  This is a real boat, not a few logs strapped together like the raft.

Sailing the Karve into Dieppe base in the Black Forest

The Karve actually sails much faster than the raft and has four inventory slots to carry cargo.  I did some coastal raiding for tin ore with it, and we’ve all used it for some exploration.

We had decided that our instance group dungeon for the week was going to be The Elder.  But the afternoon before Crowbar (Moronae from the WoW Classic group) were on and decided to go get things setup for the event in advance.  Planning!

Well, sort of planning, in a half-assed kind of way.  We decided to sail north around the western side of our island, up the coast and as far as we could to get as close as we could to the site of The Elder.  Our idea was to get up there, build a secure compound, then put up a portal so we wouldn’t have to muck about with all that sailing just to get to the fight.  Not that I don’t enjoy sailing… the Karve is a delight… but it does take time.

So off we went, a few supplies… mostly a couple of surtling cores for the portal… in hand.

On the sea in the rain

Of course the weather was bad and it was raining most of the time and the wind seemed set against us, as it always seems to be when you’re actually traveling to a destination.  But we pressed on and found that The Elder’s site was pretty close to the shore when we finally spotted land.

We actually found a nice little cove to come ashore.  There was even a stone tower there to mark the place.  I am always optimistic about such landing sites, even if I have no basis in fact or history for being so.

The landing cove, our little Drake’s Bay

It was there that we discovered that we ought to have packed more supplies… like a lot of wood.  You think you’re going to the Black Forest so that wood won’t be an issue.  But once we knocked down a few nearby fir trees to start a building, we found we were in an area heavily made up of pine trees, which yields a bit of regular wood, but mostly core wood.  Core wood is good, but for basic building you need plain wood.

Meanwhile, the greys were showing up constantly, so our progress was slowed by fighting.  As it turned out there was a greydwarf nest on either side of the camp, just out of line of sight.

Time to take the axe to this

Eventually we took those out, but it was a long running fight before we had a building standing.

A house to stage from

There was also a troll cave just up the hill from us, so we had to kill a troll along the way as well.  No end of problems… and recurring ones too.  My current operating theory is that troll caves are troll spawners, since they clearly respawn.

You can see our camp from the troll cave

It was then that we found ourselves shy of fine wood.  We actually could have found some… there were some birch trees in a Meadows biome not too far from us, but we had other issues.  All the combat had made my copper knife and bronze axe useless, and you need a forge to repair those.  So we had to sail back to a base to get supplies.

Fortunately, about a third of the way up the west coast of our main island is a base with a portal to our main base, so we did not have as far to go and the sailing was a straight shot, without need to navigate the shallows that we had to slip through to go north.

So we sailed, made it to the portal, got back to our main base and repaired.  We also grabbed supplies and built a portal at that end with the tag “Elder” so once we built the portal near The Elder we would be hooked up for travel.

The trip back on the boat was uneventful, though we spotted an abandoned raft on the way.  Somebody left that behind while exploring.

Back at The Elder outpost the greys were there to greet us, so we had to fight to clear the area.  With plenty or core wood around I built some pointed stakes around the house, which the greys have a knack for impaling themselves on.

The portal went up, once I found some space for it in the house.  Houses fill up with junk quickly, just as in real life, as we had a workbench and beds and chests already there.

Once the portal was in place, we were able to jump back and forth with supplies.  I brought back wood and built a palisade wall around our outpost, moving the sharpened stakes outside of that.  Our outpost was set.  Then I felt the need to sail the Karve back to one of our bases with a harbor.

But, with this outpost connected to the main base via a portal, we were all set for the Elder.  His altar was just a short walk.

The site of the coming fight

We just had to take him out.  But with all four of us, how hard could that be?