Game Guides

Valheim – How to Get the Pickaxe

If you want to mine metals you'll need this tool in hand.

by Brandon Adams


Valheim is similar to other survival games in many ways, such as your need to craft a pickaxe to gather stones and minerals from rocks. Thing is, your Viking will be unable to craft a pickaxe at the start, and you can’t punch stones out of boulders in Valheim. Thankfully, crafting your first pickaxe is a task you will accomplish in the early game. You just have to beat Valheim’s first boss to grab the requisite material. No pressure . . .

Defeat Eikthyr to collect his antlers and unlock the pickaxe recipe in Valheim.

Your first pickaxe in Valheim cannot be crafted until you learn the recipe, and the only way to do that is to defeat the game’s first boss, Eikthyr. We have a full guide detailing how to summon and defeat him here, but for the sake of brevity: you need to craft leather armor, a shield, and a flint axe before you even consider confronting this mighty stag. You’ll need deer pelts, leather scraps (from boars), flint, stone, wood, and two deer heads. All said you should be able to take down Eikthyr within an hour or two of starting Valheim.

Once you’ve slain the mighty beast, it will drop its head and a pair of antlers. Looting these antlers will unlock the pickaxe recipe in Valheim, and you can combine one of these antlers with some wood at your workbench to create the pickaxe. This tool is crucial, since the next biome you’ll visit – the Black Forest – is where you’ll find both copper and tin. You’ll need these to unlock your Forge and some of Valheim’s more complex recipes, meaning you’re about to put your new pickaxe to heavy use.

Some advice: the starting pickaxe is pretty fragile, and the ores you’ll harvest are heavy. Save yourself some grief and establish an outpost within the Black Forest. You’ll be able to store your ores there, repair your pickaxe, and rest your head at night instead of hauling ass back to your main base. It behooves you to create multiple outposts as your progress through Valheim, and you’ll swiftly learn why should you head out into the Black Forest and find yourself encumbered with ore and wielding a broken pickaxe.

- This article was updated on:February 9th, 2021

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