How to build a house in Terraria

I’m having a blast playing Terraria, the Minecrafty sidescroller from Re-Logic. And, since it was on sale just a few days ago on Steam, I’m assuming many others are too. I had a bit of a hard time figuring out what to do at first, so I thought I’d share my findings in the hopes that it will help someone else who’s just getting started.

Similar to Minecraft, the first thing you’ll want to do once you’re in the game is start gathering wood. Your player character comes equipped with a sword, a pickaxe, and an axe right off the bat. Hopefully, you’ll initially spawn in an area with a lot of trees. If you don’t, good luck finding them. I still don’t know how to get out of a cave.

In the upper left corner of the user interface is your hotbar. These items are mapped to your keyboard keys 1-0 so they’re easy to access. Press the number three to equip the axe, then left click at the base of a tree hold the button down. In a few moments, it will explode into piles of wood for you to collect. If you don’t click at the base of the tree but somewhere in the middle, you’ll be left with a stump that you’ll have to chop down later if you’re standing where you want to build.

Chopping down a tree

You’ll want to clear out enough space to make  a small house. If the ground isn’t level, use your pickaxe in the same manner as your axe to chop away at the ground and make it level.

Once you’ve cut down a few trees and have some space on level ground, press the number four on your keyboard to equip the wood you just collected. Left click just above the ground in front of your character to place a piece of wood there. Then, holding the mouse button down, drag your cursor along the ground to place the floor of your house. You can only place objects on the ground a few feet in front of your character, so you will most likely have to move while doing this.

Placing the floor

Placing the walls works the same way as placing the floor. Just left click and drag your cursor to form a box.

Placing the walls

Next, you’ll need to place a wall behind the house in order to keep the monsters from spawning inside. To do this, you’ll need to build a work bench first. Press the escape key to enter your inventory and crafting screen. In the lower left corner of this interface, click on the work bench icon, then click on it again to craft it, then click a spot in your hotbar so you can equip it later. At this point, you can close the inventory and crafting screen by pressing the escape key again.

Equip the work bench in the same way you equipped the wood earlier (by pressing the corresponding number on the keyboard). Then, left click just above the ground in front of your character to to place the work bench there. If you go back into your inventory and crafting screen while standing near the work bench, you’ll have more crafting options available. Do this next, then click on the wood wall icon in the lower left corner. Click on it a few times to craft enough wood walls (you’ll want several dozen for a small room), then click a spot in your hotbar so you can equip it.

Next, equip the wood wall(s), left click in the top left corner of the interior of your house, and drag your cursor up and down and back and forth to fill the entire backdrop of the room with the wood wall.

Placing the wood wall background

Now you’re safe from zombies! But you’re also stuck inside your house. You’ll need to place a door and/ or a platform to enter and exit your house. Go back to your workbench, open the inventory and crafting screen, find the wooden door icon, and craft a couple of these. You might as well craft a few wood platforms while you’re at it, which will make the third entrance to our house. Don’t worry – zombies can’t get through any of them… for now.

Next, equip your axe, chop down one of the walls on the side of your house, equip the wooden door, and place it there in the same way you placed the wood walls and the work bench earlier. To open and close the door, simply right click on it with your mouse.

Placing a door

Do this to the other side of the house too, then cut a hole in the roof for the wood platform. Equip the wood platform, place your mouse cursor where the hole is, then left click and drag your cursor to seal the entrance. You can jump up out of the house this way or drop down into it by pushing the s key while standing over the platform.

Slimes can't get through the doors or the platform

The last thing you’ll need is light. Go back to your workbench, open the inventory and crafting screen, find the torch icon, and craft a couple of these. You can only place torches on walls or on the ground, and not on the background.

There! Now you can laugh as the zombies try helplessly to claw their way into your home to eat your brains. That is, until a  Blood Moon or Goblin Invasion occurs, which I imagine is a frightening thing. Let me know if you have any questions or if I left anything out.


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