How to Play NorthGard: Beginner’s Guide

Northgard is one of the most enjoyable real-time strategy games that you can not only play single-player but also multiplayer with friends. I have been really enjoying this game lately and the one thing that holds most people back is that there is a major learning curve, or so it seems.

Keep in mind that I won’t be able to cover everything but I am going to try and help you better understand the game and get you started out. Don’t expect this to be an extreme guide, although that may come later.

So here is your beginner’s guide on how to play Northgard.

Starting a Game in Northgard

Jumping into the very start, you have a few different game mode options to choose from. There is the story mode, multiplayer, and singleplayer. 

For single-player and multiplayer, you have full control over how the game will play out. I won’t go over everything here for sake of time but going with the Northgard game mode and everything else is self-explanatory.

The map size, type, world hostility, and generation are all personal preferences but I usually leave them at default.

For transparency’s sake, I am going to be using the Bear clan in this video, it’s a great clan to start out with and is a great clan to stick with. I recommend researching the other clans and trying them out for yourself.

Winning Conditions

Victory conditions are really important but here is a quick rundown. Domination is winning by taking your opponent’s town hall and taking them out, winning by trade is when you get enough trade experience and trade routes to be the biggest trader in the match, winning by fame is basically being able to win by collecting fame, and fame can be gathered in a lot of different ways, and the last is map special which can be a bunch of different things.

I don’t have time to get into them all that much but I recommend sticking with domination for now because some clans can’t even win by trade or fame.

Northgard HUD

Now that we are in the game, let’s do a quick rundown of the in-game HUD and what it all means.

On your top left of the screen, we have your win condition check and see the progress from each clan.

You then have your diplomacy with other clans and NPC factions.

And lastly, we have your rivalry with the other clans.

To the very top right we have your clan’s happiness meter, food supply, wood supply, krowns, stone, iron, population number and limit, military number, and lore.

The number next to your food, wood, and krowns is very important because it shows you how much you are gaining or losing in that field.

Starting Out in Northgard

When you first start out, you need to build a few essential buildings before doing anything else. You need to build:

  • A Scout Camp
  • Wood Lodge
  • House

Scout Camp

Once the scout camp is finished, go ahead and left-click on one of your villagers and right-click on the scout camp. Selecting your townspeople and assigning them is done this way for whatever job you assign them to.

Once you have done that, you can let your scout roam and uncover land on their own, or better yet, you can select them and right-click on an uncovered piece of land. This allows you to have control over what parts of land you want to uncover first.

Wood Lodge

Once the woodcutter’s lodge is finished, assign one or even two villagers to it. This is vital because you need wood in order to progress in the game and build more production buildings.

House

Once your house is built, you will notice that your overall population limit will rise. Always try your best to build more houses, even in the late games, so that you are always growing and your population is never upset because of the lack of available housing.

Clearing Areas

Now, once your scout has cleared some areas around you, you need to clear those areas. With most clans, it costs food to colonize an area. I always recommend trying to get areas with food production potential, as food is one of the most vital things to have.

Here are the types of food areas you need to look out for:

Soil

You can build farms here and they look like this.

Ponds

Ponds can have fisheries and you can only put one on a pond that has fish in it.

Deer

Deer are another great source of food and you’ll need to put a hunters lodge there.

Trading Post

Eventually, you want to build a trading post or ship dock so that you can build trade routes and earn more money. For trading posts, you will lose a small amount of whatever material you trade with other clans and factions in exchange for money.

Quick tip, if you trade with the giants in the map, you can eventually befriend them and gain a free giant to fight with your army. You will need to trade food with them.

LoreTree

Your LoreTree gives your clan specific buffs in whatever area you choose. There is no right answer here so unlock the tree how you feel is best for you and eventually, in the late game, you should be able to unlock everything.

The options at the bottom are unlocked over time when you unlock more of the LoreTree.

Defense Tower

You will also want to build Defense Towers on your borders, as those will help prevent clans and NPC’s from taking your land. They are vital to have a late game.

Upgrading

Don’t forget to build mines on stone nodes and later on iron nodes. The stone will allow you to upgrade your town hall and all other buildings. You will want to upgrade your town hall and scout camp because the entire map cannot be discovered until you upgrade your scout camp.

When you mine iron, you will need to create a forge in order to upgrade any of your types of townspeople’s skills. You can also craft relics that all have their own abilities and benefits. One I always use is Mjölnir, which does this.

Attacking Other Clans

Once your food supplies and production levels are good, you’ll want to start building an army for conquering the land. You’ll need to build training camps, the training camp is best for close combat troops, the ax thrower or archery camps are good for long-range, and the shield barriers are a great front-line group to have.

Don’t forget to get your war chief, which for most clans can be gotten through your training camp. They are vital to have as they will help you push through zones. Don’t forget to have lots of healers so you can send the wounded back to your land to get healed up.

Once you have a sizable army, you’ll need to push through each of your enemy’s tiles and once you kill all of their troops inside, you will start to conquer that tile. You will need to conquer tile by tile until you finally get to their town hall and take that tile. Once you take it, you have taken that entire clan out for the remainder of the game.

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