Valheim Mistlands update makes the biome safer – but not the ballista

Valheim Mistlands update 0.212.9 is out now on the public test branch, and patch notes detail balancing aimed at making the mountainous biome safer to explore

Valheim Mistlands update 0.212.9 - a bearded figure grimaces, his eyes glowing bright blue

Valheim Mistlands update 0.212.9 has arrived on the public test branch for the viking survival game, and it aims to make the dangerous biome a little safer to explore – though it won’t make ballistas any less dangerous to be around, despite some player outcry. The Valheim Mistlands update arrived on public servers on December 6 after several weeks in public testing, and players have been terrorised by the region’s Seekers and flying Gjalls ever since.

Firstly, let’s get the bad news out the way. There’s some helpful ballista tweaks – they’ll now fire faster, the ammo is cheaper to make, and sound effects have been added to more easily tell when they are shooting and when they lose sight of targets. However, despite “tweaked targeting behaviour” the devs confirm that it will still target friendly creatures and players – something that has led to much consternation from community members who say they simply don’t bother using the auto-turrets as a result.

This has been a point of contention since release, with a Twitter poll from senior developer Jonathan Smårs concluding that 57.5% of those who responded thought that ballistas should never shoot players. Smårs himself is very much in favour of the potential danger, however, pointing out that all other defences such as traps affect players and monsters similarly and saying, “if it only shoots monsters wouldn’t it feel a bit less exciting somehow?”

Also a little disappointingly, comfort provided by different carpets no longer stacks, meaning you’ll be less able to make your home ultra-cosy by laying down a raft of rugs. This will roughly translate to five minutes fewer of max comfort, which is probably a fair balance change, though players remark that the idea of having a bevy of beautiful blankets felt very on-theme for the game’s whole vibe.

There’s lots to look forward to in these latest Valheim Mistlands patch notes, however. Armour and shield recipes from the Mistlands have had their durability increased, making exploration a little easier. The Seeker Soldiers and Gjalls, two of the most dangerous recurring creatures in the new biome, have had their spawn rate nerfed to something “similar to Troll spawns in Black Forest.”

Not only should you see fewer Gjalls floating into view as a result, they’ll also be slightly less able to wreak complete havoc on your base – they now shoot just one projectile at a time, rather than two. As for the Seekers, they’ve all had their AI adjusted slightly to make them a little less relentlessly aggressive, which should give players a moment to catch their breath mid-fight.

If you’ve run into issues with the new Seeker event overwhelming you with the ant-like troublemakers in places you might not expect them to appear, you’re also in luck. The event will no longer occur in the Meadows, Swamps, Mountains, or Ocean biomes. In addition to this, you won’t see Seeker Soldiers, so it should be somewhat easier to deal with them before they overrun your base.

Valheim Mistlands update 0.212.9 patch notes – public test branch

Balancing and Tweaks

  • Mistlands armour and shield recipes rebalanced and durability increased.
  • Staffs have rebalanced recipes and stats.
  • Ballista tweaks (Increased fire rate, sound effects added when shooting and losing sight of targets, tweaked targeting behaviour).
  • Ballista ammo recipes made cheaper.
  • Mistlands Seeker event tweaked (It will no longer trigger in Meadows, Swamps, Mountains or Ocean. It will no longer spawn Seeker Soldiers and the amount of Seekers & Broods has been rebalanced).
  • Seeker AI tweaks (They should now circulate a bit and not be on the player constantly to give them some time to catch their breath).
  • Seeker Soldier and Gjall spawn rate tweaked (Was spawning quite frequently earlier. It’s now much similar to Troll spawns in Black Forest).
  • Comfort from different carpets no longer stacks.
  • Gjall will now only shoot 1 projectile at a time instead of 2.
  • Hare running speed slightly decreased.
  • Tetra bait uses Fenring trophy instead of Ulv trophy.
  • Fish in mountain caves will respawn correctly, and small additional lake added.
  • Tuna also always takes ocean bait since it is in ocean as well.

Fixes and Improvements

  • Stutter fix when walking left with hoe or hammer equipped.
  • Fixed animation issues on dual knives idle and block idle.
  • Fixed a lighting issue with fog in black forest.
  • Fixed an error while viewing a character in the main menu that has a fish in its inventory.
  • Fixed an issue that could cause the Mistlands boss to escape (Sorry, Your Grace).
  • Spawned skeletons will unsummon correctly after rejoining a network game.
  • Find console command shows absolute position rather than offset.
  • Mating hens no longer sound like boars.
  • Correct effects will now be shown when placing marble bench and table.
  • Music will fade out correctly for dungeons and locations when continuous music is turned off.
  • Some locations that had looping music will now only be played once.
  • Various networking changes to solve connectivity issues when using crossplay.
  • Sounds, music, animations and textures have been optimised to save around 485 Mb of RAM and to decrease the download size of Valheim by approximately 420 Mb.

If you’ve yet to explore the newest biome, check out our Valheim Mistlands preview to find out what awaits you among the mists. Meanwhile, if you’re a newcomer to one of the best co-op games on PC, then take a glance at our Valheim progression guide to learn what you need to do at each stage of the game, as well as some Valheim building tips to help you get a lovely base up and running.