For Valheim players, this is a fishing guide and the Mistlands update included, as the Mistlands update has just dropped and I still need to find all the bait recipes.
What you will need to start
In order to consistently catch fish in Valheim, you will need to acquire a few different items. It is possible to catch the odd fish that has been washed ashore, but this is not a reliable source of fish.
The first thing you will need, of course, is a fishing pole. These are most commonly bartered from Haldor (350 coins), but may also be found at the bottom of Frost Caves if you are lucky. You will also need some bait. To begin with, this will also be bartered from Haldor (10 coins per stack of 50). Lastly, you will want lots of stamina for fishing, so be sure to have at least a couple types of good stamina-boosting food.
Where to start fishing
Now that you have a fishing rod, some bait, and stamina food you are ready to start fishing! As of the Mistlands update, the bait bartered from Haldor will not work to catch all fish types, so you’ll need to start in a Meadows biome.
You may choose to fish from aboard a raft/boat or from shore. If fishing from shore, be sure that a) you are able to handle the odd mob sneaking up on you and b) you are on a rock or dock high enough from the water’s surface that high swells will not cause you to start swimming and waste your cast.
Note that fish in Valheim do not appear on your line out of nowhere. The fish you see swimming in the water are the fish you will (hopefully) catch. If you don’t see any fish in the water, you’re not likely to catch anything from that spot. Move on a little ways until you see at least 1 or 2 fish jumping/swimming about. Some guides suggest searching until you find a spot with 4 or 5 fish congregated, but I find that takes more time than you end up saving.
Found yourself a nice spot in the Meadows with some fish waiting to be caught? Time to make your first cast! Don’t forget to eat your stamina food first, though.
You do not need to attach the bait manually; this will be done for you as long as you have bait in your inventory when you cast. To make a cast, equip the fishing rod as you would a weapon or tool, then click and hold the left mouse button. The longer you hold the button, the further your cast will go. To begin with, hold for only a brief time. If you cast your line too far, you will run out of stamina trying to reel in your catch. I find something between 8 and 16 meters is about right. This is also close enough to see the fish approaching your line, which I find helpful for timing my reeling in.
Now, wait for a fish to bite. Fish in the area will circle the bait if they are close enough to notice it. Sometimes they will only pass nearby – wait to be sure they’re nibbling before reeling in. How can you be sure, you ask? A spherical, yellow pulse will come from the bait when a fish bites. When you see that pulse, immediately click the right mouse button and hold for a split second. If you’re successful, a message will display in the middle of the screen saying HOOKED. Should you fail to hook your fish on the first try, don’t worry. Stop reeling in and wait for another yellow pulse.
Once you have hooked a fish, you must continue reeling it in using the right mouse button. This is where that stamina food is important. Reeling in a fish costs stamina, and you will lose the fish if you run out. This can take a bit of practice, especially if you’re like me and know nothing about fishing irl. Try not to waste all your stamina reeling in constantly while the fish is swimming directly away from you. Instead, hold the right mouse button down while the fish is swimming towards or orthagonally to you. When the fish swims directly away, spam clicking the right mouse button but do not hold it down.
Keep an eye on your stamina bar as you finish reeling in. If you think you might run out before the game officially considers the fish caught, you can try to grab the fish in mid-air using E. However, I’m not sure what effect this has on experience gain towards the new fishing skill, so I recommend only using this option when you risk losing the fish altogether if you don’t.
Also of note regarding levelling your fishing skill: reeling in an empty line appears to grant some experience all on its own. If you really wanted to, I guess you could just buy a bunch of bait and practice fishing without bothering to find a spot that actually has fish.
Bait, Breeds, and Biomes
As mentioned earlier, the bait bartered from Haldor is no longer sufficient to catch all the fish that now exist in Valheim. Advanced bait types are made using a cauldron and the listed ingredients.
I haven’t had much time to experiment with bait types in every biome, nor have I unlocked all the bait recipes yet, so this section is a work in progress.
- Valheim Full Guide to Fish & Fishing
- Valheim Enemy Proof Houses Guide
- Valheim FPS Fix Picture Guide
- Valheim Simple Commands for FPS Boost
- Valheim How to Fix Multiplayer Lag