Warhammer: End Times - Vermintide

Welcome!

Warhammer: The End Times — Vermintide, or as we're just going to call it from now on, Vermintide, is a Left 4 Dead-esque co-op first person shooter-cum-hack n' slash. You and three fellow heroes set out to defend the land of Ubershreik from hordes of giant Rat-Men called Skaven across a series of missions in three acts, plus DLC adventures. If you haven't played Left 4 Dead, as I did, then some enemy concepts and such might take a bit getting used to, but the game is pretty straightforward to pick up, if hard to master. Be warned: if the TA ratio on this game didn't tip you off, this is going to be a long completion time, and how long it takes is going to depend heavily on your teammates. Getting a competent, communicative crew of three others together will make playing this game fun instead of frustrating, as with randoms or bots even on lower difficulties it's easy for a mission to be derailed and fail, throwing 10–15 minutes of time down the drain. We'll get into some best practices in a minute.

Vermintide is pretty meaty from a TA ratio perspective. There are 46 achievements in the base game with an additional 15 achievements in the free Nightmare and Quest and Contracts updates. The remaining achievements are paid DLC. Good news for those who buy the DLC is that for the most part the achievements are easier than the base game. Additionally, you don't necessarily need to buy the DLC to get the achievements; if someone with the DLC hosts the game, you can join their games and get the associated achievement without paying.

Now, we'll get into the basics of the game, combat, gear, consumables, mission flow, and the enemies you'll be facing. Afterwards, there is a walkthrough page for each act and a text guide for each mission with the locations of collectibles and many items along the way, along with tips on how to get through most areas. Also included are videos for collectibles, for you visual learners, as well as a rough overview map of each of the main campaign's missions. Take note that the levels of Vermintide are highly complex and have a lot of nooks, crannies, and paths that these maps don't fully cover; I just wanted a better set of maps to give you rough locations of items and where you are in the level versus the Warhammer wiki's maps. Let's get started!

Vermintide features five heroes for you to pick and choose from: the Witch Hunter, Elfin Waywatcher, Dwarf Ranger, Empire Soldier, and Bright Wizard. Each one has different strengths and weaknesses and fits different play styles: the Dwarf and Soldier tend to be very good at blocking damage and knocking back swarms so that other heroes can pick them apart, for instance, while the Waywatcher is excellent for sniping dangerous enemies from long range or tearing into packs from safety.

How you play each hero is partially determined by equipped gear. Vermintide's loot system is a big part of this game. After each successfully completed mission, you'll play a dice mini game for a chance at random loot. Playing on higher difficulties and/or collecting items in the missions (more on those later) boost your chances of getting rarer loot. The loot you equip not only boost your abilities, damage, or blocking ability, but anything you equip on the characters you are not personally playing will still equip your bots, which means if you don't have a full party the effectiveness of your AI allies is highly dependent on the kit you've selected for them.

Each hero has a bunch of equipment slots: there is a slot for headgear (which is only cosmetic), a main weapon, secondary weapon, and three "trinkets" that add status effects or other bonuses. Your main weapon is your general-purpose damage dealer, while your secondary generally consumes ammo (for example, a ranged bow, crossbow, or various guns.) Managing your ammo is an important skill, and knowing when you can use it at will versus when you'll have to conserve to make it through the rest of the level is a vital benefit. You don't want to be stuck with a far-off enemy making trouble and no one on your team having the means to kill it. Later on when we're talking about specific achievements we'll talk more about specific loot that can make runs easier.

On the next few sections we'll break the entire Vermintide 101 experience down into categories.

Combat

Combat in Vermintide, especially as you go up in difficulty, is less about dealing damage than it is avoiding damage. Enemy health increases gradually as you boost the difficulty, but their damage output scales considerably more, and your ally's own attacks can hurt you on Nightmare difficulty or higher. So knowing how to avoid damage becomes key. There are two keys to surviving Vermintide: the first is to never run somewhere alone. Enemies that we'll discuss below will incapacitate lone players and quickly destroy them; making sure no one is caught out is key to keeping people alive.

Secondly, master blocking. Holding cn_LT blocks incoming damage, at the expense of your stamina (the shield icons in the middle of your screen.) If you run out of stamina you can't block any more damage. Pressing cn_RT while blocking pushes back enemies, which gets enemies out of your face, but means they will turn their attention towards you. Managing enemies focused on your allies is an important skill and will help mitigate damage—no matter your hero or loot, you can't indefinitely block a full horde of vermin.

In addition to blocking, you also have the ability to strafe by holding A and moving the left stick left, right, or back. Smart strafes will allow you to avoid damage and keep out of the range of groups of Skaven. Situational awareness is key—while you can often strafe huge amounts of enemies indefinitely, if you get caught on some geometry or cornered you'll die incredibly fast.

You can attack enemies with regular attacks (a normal pull of cn_RT) or "charged" attacks (by holding and then releasing the trigger.) Depending on your gear, different attacks have different attributes, but generally charged attacks often do more damage or affect a wider range of damage. They are often the only way to take down armored enemies, which can generally shrug off normal attacks (more on that later.) By aiming for the head you can also get bonus 'headshot' damage.

If any ally goes down, you can "revive" them for a limited time by running over to them and holding cn_X when prompted. If their red health goes to zero while they are down, they will die and respawn a short time later somewhere further along the level, where you'll have to rescue them. In some cases, this can be a long period of playtime from your current location, and playing a hero or more down makes things much harder. The most important thing to remember: if you hold the block button before you go to revive a player, you'll block incoming damage and thus have a much greater chance of not being interrupted when reviving, making sure you both stay alive.

When you've been revived, your health bar will go white: this means that you will slowly lose health until you stabilize yourself with some healing. You can't die from bleeding out, however you can be left with only enough health that one hit from any enemy will kill you, and you won't have a chance to be revived a second time. On higher difficulties, you may want to save healing items for when you're bleeding out to avoid deaths and maximize your life gauge.

Vermintide is designed as a co-op experience, which means players calling out items or enemies makes the game easier and more fun. Just as important as talking is listening—the game gives ample audio cues about incoming enemies or positioning, and it's vital that you pay attention to them (especially as the game's low field of view means that it's easy for enemies to sneak up on you.) Of particular note is a "schwup" sound that plays when an enemies is about to strike you from behind—listen for it to time your block and you won't get stabbed in the back! If you're playing with randoms or friends, another important and oft-ignored feature is the ability to paint enemy targets and items on the map with cn_RB—this makes them flash on your allies' screens with an audio cue, even through walls, making them much easier to keep track of.

Now that we've gone over the basics of combat, let's introduce you to the rat-men you'll be dicing up in droves.

Enemies

The basic enemies you'll be fighting are Skaven infantry and Skaven slaves. These are unarmored or lightly armored enemies that will fall in just a few hits, and are mostly only dangerous if you haven't mastered blocking their strikes, or if they attack in numbers. On occasion in the levels you might be ambushed by these critters, or a horn will sound (which means reinforcement waves of normal infantry and/or specials.)

Specials are various types of more armored or difficult enemies that pose the biggest threat to your team—prioritize killing these enemies first (use the target painting liberally so everyone knows where they are; the game's audio will often announce these enemies before you have visual confirmation.)

  • Pack Master—weak enemies with a long grip, these guys are distinguished by their frantic vocalizations and long hooks. They will charge at a player and, if they grab them, drag the helpless hero back, away from teammates, eventually leaving them to choke on a pole. It's easy to misjudge distance and get grabbed by these enemies while trying to kill them, so always backpedal and use your secondary.
  • Gutter Runner—These enemies whisper creepily and move quickly, trying to pounce on heroes. These guys will launch themselves from literally halfway across a map, so they are incredible hard to avoid, but if you see one you can sidestep their launches with a quick dodge. If they find their target, they'll knock everyone else back while they go to stabbing the helpless hero like they're a pincushion; you can knock them off with a quick push, but they can often quickly recover and use smoke to disappear, to harass you at a later time. Taking them out quickly with charged attacks or at range is your best option. The good news is that if they miss dives they can often drown themselves or fall off cliffs, so the problem can take care of itself.
  • Gas Rats—These guys have tanks on their backs and WWI-looking gas masks. They will chuck globes of poison at you, creating a cloud that will quickly whittle down your health while making you screen look hazy and distorted. While they are immune to their own toxins, their poor rat friends aren't, so if you're feeling cocky you can use gas rats to clear out enemies before you choose to kill them yourself. They can sometimes bezerk and charge at you in a kamikaze run, so like all other specials, ranged kills are best.
  • Ratling Gunner—(Get it? Gatling gunner, but with rats?) These guys are (IMO) the worst special. Unlike gutter runners or pack masters, they don't incapacitate heroes directly, but once they've spun up their gun they will unleash a torrential volley of suppressive fire on the hero they've targeted. Even with the best defensive gear you'll be ripped to shreds if you're caught in the open, and you're essentially incapacitated if they're hitting you. The best option to deal with them is have the targeted hero get behind cover immediately, while your teammates flank the gunner. These guys will shoot from extremely long distances, on rooftops, and in corners, making them serious threats as they can melt your block gauge and stop you from defending against other enemies.
  • Rat Ogre—the requisite "giant tank abomination enemy" of this genre. Big, fast, and tough. They have a number of attacks, including a damaging double-fist beatdown, but the good news is that its damage is fairly easy to avoid; blocking reduces all damage from its launch attack (although it can still send you flying) and you can carefully strafe to avoid its blows. The best idea is to take turns aggroing the enemy while the other three enemies attack him from behind. You'll know an ogre is coming because of the controller rumble and its roar; when one is coming, the best idea is to make sure you're in an open area where you can't get cornered, or a place where you aren't likely to get knocked off a cliff and insta-ko'd. Against a team that knocks how to block, more threatening than the rat ogre is any other rats that will deplete your block and take shots at you while you're trying to deal with the ogre, so it's often a good idea to have one player focused on cleaning up other enemies.
  • Stormvermin—These are tall, armored versions of regular rats, and the guys you either need to headshot or use armor-piercing attacks on if you want to deal damage. Individually, they aren't much more threatening than regular rats, although they can both push you back, interfering with your attack, or use a powerful overhead chop move that can be seriously harmful on higher difficulties and can drain your stamina if blocked. They become incredibly threatening in groups, and will sometimes spawn in patrols (recognized by their marching sounds and shouts) that will wander along a route of the level. If at all possible, avoid these patrols entirely. You don't have to fight them, and they can quickly take down allies with combined attacks. If you must kill them, using special ammo and bombs to soften up the clustered enemies is your best bet.
  • Sack Rat—Rare and non-hostile, sack rats are small rats with, you guessed it, a sack on their backs. When they spot you they'll hoof it away as fast as possible. If you kill them, the contents of their sack will spill open. "A rat that doesn't attack me and drops loot" sounds innocuous enough, but if your team lacks discipline it's easy to get separated and exposed to enemy fire in the mad dash to kill one, so don't go crazy when a sack rat is spotted.

A useful thing to keep in mind is that enemies have a rather small acquisition radius—if you see an enemy in the distance, if it's not a special it's not likely to attack you unless you waltz up to it. So paying attention to when you can avoid a fight—and avoid damage—is a key part of getting through levels unscathed.

Next, we'll move onto the useful items you'll find scattered through the levels.

Items and Collectibles

There are a number of valuable resources and items found throughout the levels of Vermintide. Exploring levels for hidden loot is a good way of making sure you're always prepared—just make sure not to run off alone!

First off is ammunition, found in either single-use consumable form, or in a reusable ammo box. Either will completely fill up your secondary weapon ammo no matter if you've only used one arrow or used them all, so try and be strategic about keeping everyone topped off. If you know there's an ammo box coming, that means that you can safely go wild with your secondary weapons and deal a lot more damage safely.

In the bottom right of your screen is your hero's consumable items—healing items, bombs, or potions. Each is selectable with a corresponding D-pad press. On lower difficulties you'll start with some of these supplies for free at the beginning of the mission, but otherwise you'll have to scavenge them from chests or out-of-the-way places across the levels. Medical supplies and healing draughts both heal, but have different attributes: medical supplies take a period of time to be applied, so they can't normally be used in combat, but you can use them on your allies. Healing draughts are fast-to-drink but can only be used by yourself (you can however give them and other items to other players by selecting the item and using cn_LT when prompted, if they have the room.)

There are two types of bombs: regular explosive ones deal burst damage, while Incendiary bombs deal less damage but leave an area of flames that will continually damage additional enemies that come into contact. Use bombs when you have to defend strategic locations or when you're close to being overrun by enemies; they will make a huge difference.

Finally, potions of strength or speed either make you hit harder (strength) or move and hit faster (speed). You can use them to carve up tough enemies faster, to skip encounters entirely, or to speed recovering objectives.

In addition to potions and bombs, there are collectibles littering the maps of Vermintide. The first are lore book entries, which appear in semi-randomized locations. These unlock entries in the lore book, which is interesting if you're into Warhammer but pretty irrelevant otherwise. Also randomly appearing in chests or in the sacks of sack rats are loot die, which boost your chances with the Ranald's Bones minigame. More important are tomes and grimoires. These spawn in the same locations every time (a maximum of three tomes and two grimoires per level), and picking them up uses a consumable slot—tomes occupy the healing slot, while grimoires occupy the potion slot. The fact that you can't carry extra healing or potions makes the game harder, but each collectible you carry to the end of the level boosts your chances with Ranald's Bones and gives you a nice XP bonus. The majority of your XP gains are going to be gotten through keeping your teammates alive at the end of a level and gathering collectibles, not the level difficulty alone.

Tomes themselves don't have any deleterious effects, and while they occupy a healing slot you can safely drop them and pick them back up, meaning that you can easily heal yourself with available supplies, pick up a tome, and then continue on. Grimoires, meanwhile, drop the max health of everyone on the team, not just the person who picks it up, to a maximum of 50% for two tomes. Even worse, you can't drop a Grimoire without it disappearing, which means once you pick it up, you're committed to carrying it, and if you get killed it's gone forever. What makes it worth it, you ask? Why, Ranald's Bones! Which, speaking of…

Ranald's Bones & Gear

So what is this gear we're talking about? As mentioned, it's either cosmetics, new primary or secondary weapons, or trinkets. Items are classified as common (white), uncommon (green), rare (blue), exotic (orange), or veteran (red). Each color save veteran has a corresponding color-coded Upgrade Token, which is required for upgrading or making new gear. You'll receive supplies of tokens as rewards for Last Stand, as consolation prizes from failing missions, or through items at The Inn.

After every successful mission you'll play Ranald's Bones, which looks like this:

Ranald's Bones Minigame

The minigame consists of hitting a button and seeing what RNG gets you. Certain trinkets will boost your chances of getting items for certain heroes, but otherwise the potential rewards is random, with the rarities on display a function of your difficulty. You start with seven die, which have a 2/6 chance for a "hit"—the more "hits" you get, the higher up you go and greater chance for rarer loot. You can swap the basic 2/6 dice with the collectibles you found in the mission: loot die give you a 3/6 die, tomes a 4/6 die, and grimoires a guaranteed hit.

The Inn

Image 1

In between missions, you'll be spending a lot of time at the inn, a tiny level where you'll spend downtime between missions. Here, there's a spot to change your equipment on your heroes and choose new missions, as well as three other important spots with a bunch of different functions: the Quest and Contracts Board, where you can accept quests for additional bonuses in addition to normal completion rewards; the Forge, where you can unlock additional gear functionality or create new gear; and the Shrine of Solace, which lets you "pray" for new gear, modify your existing gear, and adjust its attributes. Let's go through the tabs on each spot (navigable using the triggers) one by one:

Forge:

Fuse—Merge equipment of the same rarity together. You either fill up the slots with five pieces of gear, or make up the difference with upgrade tokens. When the fusion is complete, you'll get a new item of a higher rarity, partially determined by what items you fed into the Forge.

Upgrade—Here, you can unlock weapon traits for your gear. Uncommon weapons have one trait, Rare have two, and Exotic and Veteran have three. You'll have to pay an escalating number of upgrade tokens to unlock every slot.

Salvage—This is where you trash gear you absolutely don't need, generating upgrade tokens of that item's rarity. Salvaging should be considered a last-ditch choice, because especially early on in the game you're probably better off saving items to fuse together.

Shrine of Solace:

Pray—Here you offer upgrade tokens and use a class token trinket to choose either a random weapon or primary or secondary weapon for the hero whose token you used. You can get common to exotic weapons this way, with fewer tokens paid for getting a random weapon or for a lower-rarity item.

Offer—Got an item you like, but don't like its attributes? By dumping tokens in here you can change the weapon traits. Luckily, you get to preview the changes, so if you get a set of attributes you don't like you're out the upgrade tokens but don't lose your existing attributes.

Invocate—Once you've got your gear's ideal weapon traits, the next thing to do is boost any percentage changes on those traits. For example, if you have the "Bloodlust" perk, you have a %age chance of gaining health on killing an enemy. By paying upgrade tokens you have a chance to randomly boost the percentage. You might end up with a lower percentage than you started, but you can't actually end up lowering it past what you have, so you can just keep feeding it upgrade tokens until you get a max percentage or close to it.

Tips for Going It Alone

Okay, so if you don't have anyone who's willing to play with you, I'll say right now that completing this is impossible. I've heard that people have completed the entire game on Catalclysm with bots, and a lot of luck, so in theory that's doable, but at the very least the conditional Nightmare achievements and similar are impossible because the AI isn't equipped to play the game the atypical way you'll need to, and collecting all tomes is pretty hard since allies are finicky about picking them up and will drop them often. That said, chances are you won't always have teammates to help, so here's some general suggestion based on my play through and the feedback of others on how to make life with bots easier:

  • Equipment—This is the most important part. Your bots are going to get shredded if they have bad gear. Make sure you aren't focusing all your attention on getting gear for your chosen hero. Weapon traits that bestow health on kills or hits helps with survivability.
  • I recommend you have a long-range secondary, because the bots can be iffy about prioritizing or targeting far-off specials. If you don't want that ratling gunner or globadier to end your run, best deal with it yourself.
  • In general, the bots are good about blocking and dealing with groups of skaven, but they're also usually single-minded about killing enemies in front of them. Keep that in mind: if you go down and there's enemies between you and your bot, they might just spend too much time fighting to revive you.
  • Trinkets that speed up revives can help. If you go down, you're entirely dependent on your bots to help you, and anything that makes their job faster and less prone to interruption means you're more likely to live.
  • Given that there's no way to "clear" a level (enemies will spawn in indefinitely), moving quickly and letting your allies catch up or teleport to you isn't a bad idea. Unlike a game with cooperative humans, the AI can actually teleport to you to help you with specials and the like under limited circumstances. Knowing when to book it and when to play safe on a level will speed up your run times. Note that some shortcuts you can take the AI won't (like jumping down hills rather than going the long way) so keep an eye on them to make sure you don't get too separated.
  • If you want to grind loot with minimal fuss solo, Smuggler's Run seems far and away considered the best one to do so. It's a quick completion with relatively few chances for RNG enemies to ruin your day. Other good options are any missions that don't have tomes and grimoires (Man the Ramparts, Wheat and Chaff, etc.)
  • Bots don't count for completion of a level—if you reach the end wagon and your bot allies are dead or far away, it doesn't matter—close the cart door and you'll be granted victory.

Good luck! Now, hopefully this is a last resort, and you get an intrepid band together to run through this game, but getting missions done solo to help gear up your characters can be a better use of your time if you're interested in a faster completion. On to the campaign guide!

Prologue and Act I:

First off, start with the tutorial (accessed from the main menu). This is the basic demo of gameplay using the Waywatcher. Just follow the instructions and practice your blocking, dodging, and weapon usage. At the end you'll save the Dwarf, granting you your first achievement:

Wutelgi

Rescue Bardin Goreksson from the Skaven.

Wutelgi
1 guideOnline/OfflineSingle PlayerCooperative

Now you'll be starting on the game for real. First things first, load your chosen character and enter the Inn. You can't do much here, but you can go to your equipment locker and equip your standard trinkets. This will grant you:

Reikland Accessories

Equip a Trinket for the first time.

Reikland Accessories
1 guideOnline/OfflineSingle PlayerCooperative

Now let's start on the missions proper. I recommend starting every mission off on Easy to get a feel for the beats and objectives and general terrain; you're going to have to replay all these missions plenty, so make things easy for yourself to start with. For each mission, I'll be providing a video link to the tomes and grimoire guides. I'm also including a map, but use them mostly for general orienteering as the worlds of Vermintide are sprawling and hard to precisely map. The numbers correspond to the numbers in the text walkthrough so you can better keep track of your progress. Good hunting!

Horn of Magnus

3 Tomes / 2 Grimoires [Video Guide courtesy Grecolas]

horn of magnus map

The prologue mission Horn of Magnus is a fairly straightforward affair. Given how often you'll probably end up playing it, it'll also be one of the easier missions, even if only by repetition. Start out by leaving the alley and reaching the docks area. Hang a right and another right, heading towards the watch. Along the docks there are a variety of loot locations and chests to pillage before heading up the stairs into the guard post. Everyone here is dead, which you'll discover is the fate of almost any character that's not one of your heroes or the innkeeper, so get used to it. In here there's some more loot. Exiting the guard post you'll likely run into your first wave of reinforcements. Holding the chokepoint of the guard hallway is a good strategy, assuming you make sure someone is watching your back; reinforcements will often come through the guardhouse you just cleared. It's a valuable lesson—there's no real way to "clear" any area and there's no pause option, so sitting around idly is going to have you dealing with unnecessary enemies.

Entering the pig pens, make sure to check underneath them, as ammo often spawns here. Proceeding along the path, you'll find you can go under a bridge or to the right and over the aforementioned path. To the right is a chest. Around here is often a Rat Ogre attack spot, so make sure to use the relatively open space to kite him. If not, you'll face him somewhere else along the way. If you take down an Ogre, you'll get the following achievement:

Rakogridrengi

Be part of killing a Rat Ogre.

Rakogridrengi
2 guidesOnline/OfflineSingle PlayerCooperative

If you're the one who personally lands the death blow on him, you'll also get:

Moulderbane

Get the killing blow on a Rat Ogre.

Moulderbane
1 guideOnline/OfflineSingle PlayerCooperative

There are two routes available to you. You can head straight along down the main road, or hug the side alleys. The side alleys have the tomes and grimoires we want, along with some chests; by taking these side roads you can also avoid stormvermin patrols if they spawn on the main road. That said, there's an achievement for tackling one of these groups of rats, and if you're on an easy difficulty there's no better time to get it, so if the opportunity presents itself, attack the patrol. Use grenades to soften them up and make sure to avoid their powerful attacks. Once the dust is settled, you'll get an achievement for your trouble.

Pest Control

Be part of killing a whole Stormvermin Patrol.

Pest Control
1 guideOnline/OfflineSingle PlayerCooperative

Regardless, hug the right alley. You'll end up going past a chest and reaching a cellar door. Go downstairs, and you'll find a chest and, in a mossy corner, a tome (1/3). Carrying this to the end of the level will grant you:

Scholar

Collect one Tome.

Scholar
1 guideOnline/OfflineSingle PlayerCooperativeCollectable

There's also a grimoire (1/2) here, hidden a bit on top of a support beam. Hop on the chest and face the cellar stairs, and you'll see it ahead of you and can grab it by jumping and holding cn_X.

Exit the cellar, being careful of enemies, and head right, cutting across the main road and heading into a courtyard separated by an iron fence. In this area towards the back is a door to a church. Open or break it down and you'll find a chest on the altar with another tome (2/3).

Head back out and now follow the road. Feel free to snipe any enemies you encounter with your secondary weapon, as there's a guaranteed ammo box at the end of the road. You'll have to take a left and take a ramp up and over to get into the next section. This is a point of no return, one of several you'll encounter throughout the game. The most important thing to do is make sure you have any collectibles you want on hand, and that everyone jumps it at the same time—it's trivially easy for a straggler to get picked on by a special Skaven and your allies being unable to do anything to help them. Even worse, if they were carrying a grimoire or a tome, it's gone and there's no way to get it back.

The next area may or may not have some loitering Skaven. To your right is a big gate you'll have to blast down with three gunpowder barrels, which spawn one by one on the left side of the courtyard. The best strategy here is to spread out your team a bit; one person grabs the barrels and chucks them over the ledge to the street, where a runner grabs them and carries them to the door, protected along the way by the two others. As soon as the barrel is in position, the next barrel will spawn and the person by the barrels can repeat the process. Gunpowder barrels will ignite and eventually explode if they are hit by fire, whether they are on the ground or being carried, so it's important that the runner be protected from fire. If the barrel is sparking, you still can have a chance to throw it at the door and get it in position before it explodes. Periodic swarms will pour down from the rooftops, and special skaven—especially gunners—like to pepper you from the rooftops, so stay sharp.

Once the gate blows, make sure you have dealt with any enemies left in the courtyard before proceeding. In the next area is a huge public square, with the street and rooftops surrounding dotted with Skaven. There's a chest and a likely lore page spot on the far right side of the square as you enter, and the second grimoire (2/2) on the left edge, on top of a wall outcropping (the jump and hold trick works here too). This is another common spot for a rat ogre attack, and is probably the best spot for it, as you'll have a massive amount of room to strafe his attacks (provided you kill any of the enemies who are dotting the landscape.)

Proceeding through the only exit, you'll come across a series of stairs that lead up to an inn. There is often, but not always, an ammo crate outside the inn at the top. This is another common ogre attack area. There are supplies littering the inside of the inn, but most importantly make sure you open up all the chests in the inn as you make your way up. When you reach the top you'll find a set of stairs that leads to a gaping hole in the roof, leading to the rooftops; before you head up, make sure you go behind the stairs to where another chest is hidden, and then once opening it, backtrack to the previous room with a chest. Assuming you've opened enough of these trigger chests, to the right of the wall a partition will have disappeared, revealing a small room with the final tome (3/3) inside. Now head up to the roof.

Another spot for rat ogres or very troublesome gunners, head along the rooftops, stopping at the end to pilfer the contents of a room. Clear out the opposition across the way before heading along a plank bridge to the opposite side. Be wary of occasional ambush spawns. Go into the Magnus tower ruins (another point of no return) and down the corridor to reach an elevator. All human players need to be present for the lift to activate; if you've got bots just jump on and they'll spawn in.

Ride the tower up to the top. You'll now have to ascend the rest of the tower via cramped rooms and twisting stairs. There will be supplies in the corners of the rooms, and this is a common place for a sack rat to spawn as well, if you want to chase him up. You'll hit another point of no return, and then ascend to a wooden gantry in a clearing, with the eponymous horn above you. This is the final hold-out point and another point of no return once you drop down. There will always be healing items here, so grab what you can. You can actually leave your tomes up here, provided you remember to pick them up later; you can jump up and grab them from below if you're positioned correctly. This way you can carry the maximum amount of healing possible. There are scattered healing items, potions and bombs out or in chests throughout the area; clear out any opposition and stock up. Then, pick your holdout point and send someone to ascend the stairs and blow the horn to start the final onslaught.

Where you choose to hold out depends on personal preference. Common places are right next to the horn, or in the bump-out with a window at the base of the stairs. Less exposed to special fire is the small ledge by the chest underneath the horn; while this is an excellent place to funnel skaven and it can protect you from a lot of potential special fire, there's only one way to get out of this place, so be careful if you choose to make your stand here, because there's no place to retreat or maneuver. Either way, you'll be hit with multiple waves of enemies. Use your bombs on big clusters of enemies to thin them out or damage any more that are coming into range, and make sure no one slips behind your line. If you haven't already gotten it, this is an easy place to kill more than five skaven with an explosive to net you an achievement:

Five Rats, One Stone

Kill 5 skaven with one grenade.

Five Rats, One Stone
1 guideOnline/OfflineSingle PlayerCooperative

If there are gunners or gas rats, kill them first because they will destroy your ability to hold your line together. Eventually the rat onslaught will slacken, and a big building piece will smash a hole in the floor; that's your escape hatch. Make sure you grab your tomes, then all jump down and hit the elevator. All that's left is a mad dash through an alley to reach the wagon for the mission to complete.

Prologue

Complete the Horn of Magnus.

Prologue
1 guideOnline/OfflineSingle PlayerCooperativeMain Storyline

If you grabbed a grimoire and brought it along, you'll also get:

Dissident

Carry a grimoire to the end of a level.

Dissident
1 guideOnline/OfflineSingle PlayerCooperative

If you bring all three tomes with you, you'll get an achievement as well:

The Pious

Collect all Tomes on The Horn of Magnus.

The Pious
2 guidesOnline/OfflineSingle PlayerCooperativeCollectable

Nightmare Achievement: 'Hornblower'

For "Hornblower", you have to make it from the gate you explode all the way to the horn at the top of the tower and blow it within four minutes, and then survive. This is actually pretty easy, assuming that people have A) potions of speed, and B) potion sharing trinkets. This allows you to bypass most of the enemies on your way to the top. You'll also want to equip a passive speed bonus trinket if you have it. If someone falls, leave them behind and book it. Finishing it up will grant you:

Hornblower

Alert the city by blowing the Horn of Magnus within 4 minutes of the gate exploding on Nightmare

Hornblower
1 guideOnline/OfflineSingle PlayerCooperativeDifficulty SpecificTime/Date

Interlude

Now that you've finished your first mission, we've got a few things we can start working on at the inn. Once you're LVL 1, you unlock the Forge, granting you this:

Hammer and Anvil

Unlock the Forge.

Hammer and Anvil
1 guideOnline/OfflineSingle PlayerCooperativeLevel

If you interact with the Forge and choose an item to salvage, you'll get:

Flotsam and Jetsam

Salvage an Item for the first time.

Flotsam and Jetsam
1 guideOnline/OfflineSingle PlayerCooperativeLevel

Likewise, the first time you upgrade an item you'll receive:

Dwarven Hands

Upgrade an item in the forge for the first time.

Dwarven Hands
1 guideOnline/OfflineSingle PlayerCooperativeLevel

Merging up to five items of the same rarity grants:

Til Death Do Us Part

Fuse an item in the forge for the first time.

Til Death Do Us Part
1 guideOnline/OfflineSingle PlayerCooperativeLevel

If you look around the room, you'll notice in places (like the map table, the table by the windows, and behind the bartender) there's a bunch of bottles and glasses. Some of these can actually be broken, and they (along with things like breaking down doors in campaign) count towards an achievement. If you're idling destroying stuff whenever you have down time waiting for lobbies, you'll quickly get this achievement without trying hard to grind it (there are achievements you're going to have to grind, so why freak out about this one?):

Domestic Disturbance

Destroy 500 breakable objects.

Domestic Disturbance
1 guideOnline/OfflineSingle PlayerCooperativeCumulative +

Also something to be mindful of, although you'll inevitably get it in time, is that using healing supplies on another hero (not yourself) ten times grants you an achievement as well:

Shallya

Use 10 Medical Supplies on your allies.

Shallya
2 guidesOnline/OfflineSingle PlayerCooperativeCumulative +

Now, continuing with the story…

Supply and Demand

3 Tomes / 2 Grimoires [Video Guide by Grecolas]

supply and demand map

This is another city map, so be careful not to get turned around; for the most part you're going to follow the roads, but ample loot and chests are hidden off to the sides in buildings.

From the start, head through the arch and follow the road. You can be beset by an ogre quite early in this mission, so be ready. You'll proceed around a bend to Von Holzenauerstrasse, where your path forward will be blocked. Look to the left instead and head through the potion shop, picking up supplies on the way, and through the dog pens. There will be a ladder leading to a roof on the left side of the path; this leads to a roof where you can jump from tree to roof to back alley, where the first grimoire (1/2) is located behind a fence. Proceed ahead to the Platz; if you run along the right edge you'll find a tome (1/3) on a building edge.

Continue down the road towards the large building (The Granary). There are chests and supplies in the ruined buildings on the side of the road and in the back left of this area. When you are read, proceed as a group up the granary and you'll come out at the top of a courtyard. You'll have to drop down, but if you climb up on the items stacked up to the nearby wall, you can actually jump up and grab the tome (2/3) here. Else, you can drop down, wrap around and take a ladder up to this area to claim it. Follow this road to the end and then use the stairs, then backtrack the way you came on the upper level. You'll crawl through a ruined building. I'm not sure if it's a bug or a feature, but there are two paths forward in the next building and one is randomly blocked on some playthroughs. If you head through the left door, you'll end up in the Jaegerstrasse, a street with some loot on the margins. If you head through the right door you'll go to the Ludwigplatz, a small courtyard with a building at its end. Either way, both paths terminate in one-way drops into the gardens.

The gardens are a common spot for a patrol or ogre attack to occur, but if none of those occur just stick to an edge to avoid getting surrounded and clear your way through. You'll come down a series of steps to another road, the carpenter's guild. Across from you are some buildings and scaffolding; up here is the second grimoire (2/2), which you can reach by jumping on the barrels by the carriage in the road here, then onto the carriage, the roof, and then the scaffolding.

The next area is a big clearing; there's an ammo box here so feel free to kill everything you can safely at range. In the corner of this area (your relative left as you enter this area) is the final tome (3/3) sitting in a nook on the ground. Follow the stairs up to a small roof with a gap that overlooks the final market square area, as well as being filled with supplies. When you're reading, jump down here and hack through the ropes to open the gate.

In this final area you'll need to venture through the square and bring back four sacks to the wagon. Depending on the difficulty and trinkets, your strategy may differ. If a player is fleet of foot and has potions, they can pop a speed potion and run a sack back solo, leaving the others to mostly worry about clearing out enemies, but in general you should probably escort the sack carriers at least to the stairs that lead to the wagon. Trying to do more than two sacks at a time is a recipe for disaster. Take it slow and steady, and then all pile into the wagon to end it once you've finished your task.

Completing the mission with all the tomes nets you:

Marktplatz

Collect all Tomes on Supply and Demand.

Marktplatz
2 guidesOnline/OfflineSingle PlayerCooperativeCollectable

Nightmare Achievement: 'Low Supply, High Demand'

This isn't too difficult. If you have trinkets that reduce revival times or weapons that grant bloodlust or regrowth, equip them—you can steal health via these methods, but you cannot use any consumable healing items. When you reach the final area, if someone goes down it may be a better idea to regroup by the entrance to the marketplace—all heroes will respawn here without fail. Just take your time, group up for each sack and if someone's near death just let them go down to get back health when they respawn. On completion, you'll get:

Low Supply, High Demand

Complete Supply and Demand without any member of the team using Healing Items on Nightmare

Low Supply, High Demand
1 guideOnline/OfflineSingle PlayerCooperativeDifficulty Specific

Smuggler's Run

[No Tomes or Grimoires]

03_smugglersrun_map

Welcome to the first of Vermintide's "short" missions. Unlike the slightly longer ones, there are no tomes or grimoires to grab, so you can focus on survival (or on Nightmare, the optional objective.)

Start out heading into the sewers. You'll need to duck in a side passage and come out in another gallery. If you keep hugging the left wall you'll come across a side passage with a room filled with loot. Keep progressing through the next sewer main and you'll come across a point of no return into a square area. This is the first of two floodgates; when you're ready, hack the floodgate control and then collect in a corner of the room. Here you'll defend against waves of Skaven, which shouldn't be too much of a problem. Just focus any specials first, and throw a bomb on you or in front of you to thin ranks if you feel you're getting heavily pressured. Once the gate is open, continue on and up the stairs, taking a side passage and heading to Brandts Falls, a large room. The exit is on the opposite side here, but beware—this is a common area for the rat ogre to spawn in, and rats can stream in from all sides here.

In the next passage, continue along until you reach the next point of no return. There are some supplies in a nearby room to grab before you carefully drop down; you'll take damage if you jump straight to ground level instead of falling down the lower ledges. Here, rinse and repeat your same strategy for holding out until the door drops. In the next area there will often be special skaven at the far end of the sewer, so make sure you pick them off and watch for reinforcements behind and around you. Head through the door on the right side and you'll go through a wraparound tunnel that ends in a ladder. Be careful here, as Skaven can often swarm up top at street level or jump down to you. Once you're out in the fresh air, just head to your wagon at one end of the street and the mission is over.

Nightmare Achievement: 'Thirst for Powder'

This achievement isn't too difficult, but you have to be mindful. You need to bring and place three barrels—and only three, despite what the description says—at slots right to the side of the wagon at the end of the level. There are around a half dozen barrels scattered around the level, maybe more—some locations are marked on the above map. The key point is making sure no one accidentally sets them off by slicing wildly or throwing a grenade. Clear out the surrounding areas and chuck barrels into corners for safekeeping when you run into combat. When you have to hold out at the floodgates, stick the barrels at the opposite corner from where you're going to defend to avoid possible damage. Have spotters pop up out of the ladder and maker sure the final path is clear for the barrels before you bring them up; doing them one at a time might be easiest, although the last underground passage is perhaps the most treacherous part of the level as limited quarters make accidental demolition a bigger issue. Once you've placed three barrels, jump in and you should get the achievement after you complete the mission:

Thirst For Powder

Bring at least 3 explosive barrels to the wagon on Smuggler's Run on Nightmare

Thirst For Powder
3 guidesOnline/OfflineSingle PlayerCooperativeDifficulty SpecificBuggy -

Wizards Tower

3 Tomes / 2 Grimoires [Video Guide by Swanky Jak]

Wizards tower map

Back to a longer mission this time. Wizard's Tower can be a bit difficult because much of it takes place in cramped interiors with mazelike passages stacked in multiple levels (and the possibility of fighting the rat ogre in these environs); if you're looking for the tomes and grimoires in this one, I suggest using the visual guide to get your bearings.

Start off by heading to the shop; there may be some supplies scattered around the courtyard, and there will be some inside the apothecary and down the stairs. Hit the bookcase to open the side passage, and beware of a possible horde call from either direction; keep moving as fast as you can because it seems like they tend to spawn frequently if you dally. Climb up the stairs (I'd leave the chest under the stairs alone, as in dozens of runs I don't think I've ever seen it carry anything and you're more likely to take fall damage than anything else.) Through the door, you'll find the first large multi-leveled area, the Main Library. You have to get through this area however you see fit. On your left and right are stairs; the left staircase only leads to the second story, while the right staircase takes you to all three floors. Take a right and head up to the top story. Once you're up here, orient yourself so the entrance you came in is below you on the left. Head straight and hug the left wall, and you'll turn left into a small room with supplies and a tome (1/3). Now head across the library towards the opposite side; there will be one of several ammo boxes here on the ground floor, and multiple exits to the next area. Once you pass through the doorway, you'll enter the Stairway, a cluster of connected rooms along a large chasm with stairs going up and down. The second tome is in here. To reach it, you'll want to head upwards. You'll eventually see a iron-barred passage on your right with stairs beyond; this means you're going in the right way. Head straight and turn right and you'll wrap around to the aforementioned stairway, blocked by wooden barricades you can smash down. Take the stairs up and follow the path. It will turn and head down to another area with iron bars, the tome (2/3) and more supplies. Retrace your steps and head via one of three doors to a long hallway. If you head to the right all the way you'll find a door leading into a small room with cages and the first grimoire (1/2) up above the door on a stack of books. Beyond this hallway is another room with a chest, then follow the next passage to another chest and a point of no return. Once you're ready, proceed.

You'll find yourself in the Chamber of Gnignol; the appearance of the room will change depending on your character, but the key points are the chain you must smash to open the gate beyond it, and a cliffside with an ammo box. Like the floodgate from Smuggler's Run, you'll have to smash the chain and wait for the door to lower. Thanks to the ammo box and the elevation, holding up here isn't too hard. Once you have survived the waves of skaven proceed to the door and up some stairs. There will be another point of no return, and you'll have to climb up some more stairs and go down a long passage.

You'll now be in the Hall of Mysteries, where there will be a bunch of scattered chests arrayed around the Escher-esqe environment. Head to the end of the room and there will be stairs up to the Hall of Knowledge, which has a drop down to a maze of library shelves. There will be a chest and ammo box here. Cross the room, hit up the small room for another chest, and head up the stairs to reach the upper floor above the Hall of Mysteries, which apparently is its own location, the Hall of Illusion. There are two paths through this area, but huge the left side. You will drop down and reach a balcony over the staircase leading from the Hall of Mysteries to the Hall of Knowledge. In front of you should be a chest on the ceiling; turn left, and you'll see another platform with another chest glued to the side of the wall. Inside this one is the tome (3/3); it can be tricky to grab without falling, so make sure you don't get split up while retrieving it. If you want the second grimoire (2/2), it can be found by climbing up a very step set of steps capped with a door on the other side of this hall. Retrace your steps back up if needed and head around the edge of the room, reaching another room with stairs leading up and supplies scattered around.

After taking the stairs, you'll enter a long hallway; as you drop down and head forward, the environment will suddenly change to an outdoor area with a rope bridge; continue on, hacking through the barricades to reach another door with a long set of stairs up.

You'll now reach an antechamber with supplies, so stock up as you can't come back here. Then drop down into the final event room, the Grey Wizard's Study. There will be some more supplies possibly on the sides, and ammo and more in the center, where you need to manually start the sequence. The wizard will summon wards, and you'll have to survive waves of skaven and eventually protect at least one ward.

Since you only need one ward alive (save for the "Pierce the Veil" achievement we'll discuss below), a sensible strategy is to camp one of the upper-level wards and cluster together. With your backs to a corner, your only threats are a gas rat or unmolested rat gunner, so prioritize those specials above all else. After the sequence is done, the wizard will crow about something or rather, and the path forward will open. Fight your way through whatever's left to end up back in the apothecary shop and town square, with the wagon nearby. Climb in and the mission ends.

Completing the mission with all the tomes nets you:

Winds of Ulgu

Collect all Tomes on The Wizard's Tower.

Winds of Ulgu
2 guidesOnline/OfflineSingle PlayerCooperativeCollectable

Nightmare Achievement: 'Pierce the Veil'

Play through the mission normally, and then when you get to the room with the wards, space out your heroes, one at each ward. A long-ranged hero like a Wizard, who doesn't need ammo, is very useful, especially perched on top of the bookcases to the lower-right ward (as viewed when dropping down into the area;) from that vantage point she can rain down death on anyone who goes after her ward, as well as supporting the hero on the opposite side. Heroes should tank damage for the wards by liberally bashing the incoming enemies; characters equipped with devastating blow can easily knock most of the Skaven climbing up back over the edge and make dealing with the enemies much easier. The only major threat is special skaven as you're separated. Otherwise, being spread out makes enemy numbers pretty manageable. After two major waves of enemies, if the wards are all still up the achievement will pop (you don't need to get to the end of the mission.)

Pierce The Veil

Protect all four wards in the Wizards Tower on Nightmare

Pierce The Veil
1 guideOnline/OfflineSingle PlayerCooperativeDifficulty Specific

Black Powder

[No Tomes or Grimoires]

black powder map

Black Powder is another short mission, but it's also novel in that virtually the entire mission takes place in the same area, where you'll constantly have to ferry explosive barrels from various randomly-selected locations to the boat at the edge of the play zone. To start off with, head along the docks. There will be a few loot locations along the way and light resistance. Make sure everyone is ready before dropping down to the underbelly, the location of the event that will occupy you the rest of this mission. This area has multiple levels, with the boat on the ground floor and supplies scattered throughout the area.

There's a few tricky parts to this. First off, as with the barrels in "Smugglers Run" and elsewhere, the barrels will explode from damage, so the carrier has to avoid damage (if you throw in a sparking barrel into the ship's hold you should still get the objective, however, so if all else fails you can try and hoof it if you're close.) Even worse, no more barrels will spawn if multiples are destroyed until the other barrels on the map are successfully ferried, meaning that if you lose barrels it slows down your possible completion time.

You can either cheese this mission on any difficulty by using the ladder exploit (see the "High as a Kite" solution below), or just play the mission legitimately. If the latter, I would suggest moving as a group and only splitting up into two groups of two when going for barrels that are close to each other. Be careful when running across the central area; it's trivially easy to make a jump that should clear the water, only to instead fall through and have to be rescued. At some point a rat ogre will spawn, and while the open area and elevation make it pretty easy to try and juke him, if you get sent flying it's easy to be knocked into the water.

Once you've gotten six barrels in the ship hold, get to the boat and the mission will end.

Nightmare Achievement: 'High as a Kite'

This achievement requires you to avoid killing the rat ogre and complete the mission. Fortunately, if you don't keep clearing waves of Skaven, the ogre will never spawn in the first place. To safely aggro Skaven waves, send everyone over to the boat side of the map. Here there is a long ladder that, if a person is positioned properly on it, will draw the attention of enemies who nonetheless cannot actually hit you.

Black powder exploit ladder

The other heroes should hop onto the roof of the boat (via first jumping onto the roof next to the boat from above) and let the Skaven congregate around the 'bait' hero. The setup to this can be tricky, and using potion share to speed people to their positions quickly when reinforcements start coming in can help. However, if you've successfully pulled this exploit off, the only Skaven that will appear will be specials. That leaves the other three players able to gather the objectives relatively unmolested; just make sure you don't get too close to the grouped Skaven around the ladder hero as you can peel them off. The achievement will unlock after successful completion.

High As A Kite

Complete Black Powder without killing the Rat Ogre on Nightmare

High As A Kite
2 guidesOnline/OfflineSingle PlayerCooperativeDifficulty Specific

Congratulations. Act I is complete!

Entrench

Complete Act 1.

Entrench
1 guideOnline/OfflineSingle PlayerCooperativeMain Storyline

Before we dive into the next part of the story, there's a few things back at the inn we can work on completing.

Interlude

By the time you're LVL 7 (which should be soon), you'll gain access to the Quest & Contracts board (next to the enchanting area.) You'll be presented with a screen like this one:

bounty board

In the top left corner are the various quests you can undertake, which require a certain number of finished contract keys to unlock. When you select a quest, it moves to the top right corner, and you can track your progress.

Along the left side are the various contracts available. Some offer green, blue, or orange crafting materials, others offer keys, and still others offer "boons"—time-limited stat bonuses such as increased damage or knockback. You can have up to three of these active at any time, and the available contracts and quests rotate daily. I recommend focusing your efforts on getting exotic trinkets from the quests, as well as a (single) exotic piece of headgear. The gear is cosmetic only, but you'll need one for an achievement later. Meanwhile the trinkets are the most reliable way of getting them versus the end-of-mission RNG, and they make a huge difference to your game.

Note that if you don't succeed in meeting the terms of a contract (for example, you only open 4 or 5 chests instead of the 10 you needed on a mission), repeated playthroughs do stack, so you can run the same mission as many times as you need to satisfy the contract requirements.

Once you've completed your first contract, you'll pop:

Mercenary

Complete your first Contract

Mercenary
1 guideOnline/OfflineSingle PlayerCooperative

If you want to actually receive the rewards and boons from a completed contract, you'll have to manually select it on the Quests & Contracts board (this allows you to save boons for difficult missions or the like.) Once you redeem a boon, you'll get:

Blessed

Get your first Boon

Blessed
1 guideOnline/OfflineSingle PlayerCooperative

Finally, turning in enough keys for a quest and redeeming it grants you:

Bounty Hunter

Complete your first Quest

Bounty Hunter
1 guideOnline/OfflineSingle PlayerCooperative

A note to solo players: if you're looking for teammates to run through levels, searching for games which have active contracts will boost your success rate. There will also be a cataclysm contract worth more keys that pops up on the weekend for a limited-time duration.

Now that we've introduced the Quest & Contracts board you'll be using throughout, it's time to move on to the next act of the story.

Act II

Engines of War

3 Tomes / 2 Grimoires [Video guide courtesy Grecolas]

engines of war map

Welcome to Act II, and in my opinion one of the more frustrating missions. "Engines of War" is a long slog if nothing else. To start with, head down into the forest, hanging a right and picking up the loot before dropping into the Black Grove Fen. There are a lot of enemies scattered through here, and you can often get your first patrol or ogre here. Regardless, stick to the edge and work your way around to the incline, gathering up the supplies on the edge of the fen. Head up the incline to some more supplies, crest the hill and work your way down to the river. Above you, you'll see your eventual objective—a rope bridge spanning the cavern. To get there, you'll need to head through some caves. Inside, if you hug the left wall you'll run into a small clearing; climbing up on the rocks and getting onto the cliff will net you your first grimoire (1/2). Head back into the cave and fight your way through it. Drop down to the outside cliff edge and work your way to the rope bridge, making sure to watch your back from any enemies. If you cross the bridge and again hug the left edge of the play space, you'll loop back to the cliff and find your first tome (1/3).

Make your way up the slight slope towards the ruins. This is another area scattered with enemies and a possible patrol or ogre attack. If you head along the right edge to a cluster of debris you'll often find ammo or other loot; otherwise there's supplies surrounding the downed tree trunk you'll have to head through. Taking another immediate left after exiting the tree is another loot location. Turn around and in front of you is a point of no return to the gate event in the skaven encampment.

To open the path forward, you're going to need to detonate three explosive barrels (yay! more barrels!) at three locations. Like with "Black Powder", the key here is to avoid accidentally destroying the barrels because new ones won't spawn until all the others are in position. You can probably send a lone runner to Barrel A as it's the shortest trek, and Barrel C tends to have relatively few enemies, but Barrel B is a tougher spot to reach. I suggest doing B first, then C, and then A; that way when the door to the next area comes down and reinforcements head through, you can have two or three allies ready to start dealing with the horde at a good choke point and good visibility of any specials that are coming. One key frustrating element to watch out with here in the central area is that pathing around the spikes and chains is terrible, so you might try dodging and get stuck on geometry. Give it a wide berth if you can.

Past the gate is a ravine that leads to another clearing and the Grunewald Lodge ruins; supplies may be littered in the side passages or along the edges of this area. Ascending the steps into the next structure, you can either go left or straight; first, head straight and hang a right, which will loop you up and around to a tome (2/3) and a dropdown to the previous junction. You can head either left or straight again, but if you want a grimoire, head left. You'll reach another learning, the lodge courtyard, with ruins you'll have to ascend, but if you explore the left side by wriggling through the space by a big tree you'll find an altar with the second grimoire (2/2) here. Climb up the ruins and head through the gate to find yourself at the top of a hill. This is personally the last location I've faced an ogre, so if you haven't gotten one yet you probably will here. Wind your way down the slopes, until you reach the bottom. This is the Rottfurt Road; to the left is the river and the town, to the right is a path you want to follow. There will be some loot here and, at the very edge of this area by the water, the final tome (3/3). Now trace your steps back to the town bridge and head in.

The town is where you'll have a final defense event after you ring the bell, waiting for the ship to come. There are healing supplies in the center, and possibly some extra supplies in the nearby buildings. While you can tough this fight out, a simpler solution is to avoid almost the entire fight by hiding in the cellar of the building directly in front of you (as you enter the town.) The cellar door is on the side of the structure facing the river and dock you'll have to evacuate from, and when the door is closed, rats will just congregate around. You can even take a few potshots at them through the geometry in the corners. Have everyone pile in and then send a runner to ring the bell, starting the event, then hoof it back to the cellar and close the door. You now mostly get to wait in safety. When the game tells you to get on the boat, you can actually slip out a gap in the wall to the outside by crouch jumping; everyone should pile out, down speed potions and chuck bombs to clear the way, and sprint the last section to the boat. Once everyone (alive) is on board, the mission ends.

If you acquired every tome, you'll net:

Reikwald

Collect all Tomes on Engines of War.

Reikwald
1 guideOnline/OfflineSingle PlayerCooperativeCollectable

Nightmare Achievement: 'Controlled Demolition'

This is definitely one of the more aggravating achievements; Engines of War is a difficult mission under normal circumstances, blowing the doom wheels at the same time is difficult without getting overwhelmed, blowing them all up gets you a huge swarm to deal with immediately after, and finally you still have to finish the entire mission after that.

Play as you normally would until you reach the event sequence. Get a barrel close to each ignition sequence, making sure not to get it too close. Then once there's a lull in fighters, you'll have to split up, quickly get into position, and then coordinate tossing the barrels. Since there are only three barrels, you can have two heroes pair up; I recommend sending them to position (A) or (C) as (B) doesn't tend to get that many Skaven.

Once you've thrown it, have everyone hoof it to the middle area as fast as possible; when the door opens to the next area, there's going to be a horde of Skaven and it's easy to ace the coordinated throwing part but then get torn apart while you're all separated. Liberal use of bombs and potions is recommended.

As with the regular play through, the simplest way to survive the end of the mission is to use the cellar exploit.

Controlled Demolition

Destroy all 3 Doomwheels within 5 seconds on Engines of War on Nightmare

Controlled Demolition
1 guideOnline Game ModeCooperativeDifficulty SpecificPlayers RequiredTime/Date

Man the Ramparts

[No Tomes or Grimoires]

man the ramparts

Arguably the easiest of all Vermintide missions (especially since no rat ogres spawn), "Man the Ramparts" is also a pretty fast completion. You'll start by heading along the path, grabbing the supplies in the shelf, and heading up the lift. At the top, there will be more supplies, and then your run across the ramparts will proceed. There are extra supplies scattered along the way, but don't bother going too far out of your way to get more; that just invites people getting split up or more special Skaven attacks. In the next guard house you can jump down through the hole in the floor to find more supplies, exit there and wrap around back up to the main area.

Eventually you'll reach a set of stairs down to an area in front of the big set of stairs leading into the structure; there are often a lot of storm vermin here, so thin their ranks at range and make them come to you. On either side of the steps up are more supplies (often including an ammo box) so stock up. You can stand on the battered door and safely kill any enemies on the inside before you drop down this point of no return.

From here, there are four chains that have to be hacked apart to finish the mission. You'll run into some heavy resistance along the way and each one has stormvermin guarding the chain. Luckily there's even more supplies located right next to most of these chains, so it's a simple matter of grouping up and following the path from one to the other.

When the last chain is destroyed you'll have to backtrack your way a bit to a big door that is now open. If you've got bombs or potions left, burn them here. Once through the door you'll have to follow a treacherous path downwards to the wagon, but if you're being chased by rats you can take some shortcuts and drop down rather than following the stairs, taking some fall damage but speeding your descent. At the bottom, jump in the wagon and you're done.

Nightmare Achievement: 'Unchained'

Like with "Controlled Demolition", the difficult part of this achievement is that you'll have to split the entire party to complete it. Item duplication trinkets to give everyone extra bombs and potions are very helpful. Play through the level normally, and once you get to the first set of chains have one hero whittle it down to 1/3rd or 1/4th health (just having one work on the chain means the other three can prevent anyone from taking more damage, and helps prevent accidental extra damage that might break the chain before you want to.) Then, move on to the next set of chains, and repeat the process for the final three. Finally, split up and send a hero to each chain, count down (you're going to want a mic to coordinate this, obviously) and then smash them. If you've damaged them all heavily then even without potions you should be able to break them within five seconds. Finish the mission and nab the achievement.

Unchained

Destroy all 4 chains holding up the Screaming Bell within 5 seconds on Man the Ramparts on Nightmare

Unchained
1 guideOnline Game ModeCooperativeDifficulty SpecificPlayers RequiredTime/Date

Garden of Morr

3 Tomes / 2 Grimoires [Video guide courtesy Swanky Jak]

garden of morr map 3

This is another long mission, with a tough final event right near the end that can easily wipe your team if you aren't careful. The layout is also a bit confusing the first couple of times you play it, with more nooks and crannies than can fit on a map, and mazelike crypts to get lost in. Many open tombs can have loot in them, but in general I recommend avoiding them just so you don't get stuck in a area with no space to maneuver. There are, however, some level skips that remain unpatched and fairly easy to do; I'll provide them here in case you want to save a few minutes and encounters here and there.

Start the mission by heading through the Morr gates in front of you, and instead of heading down through the passageway, first loop around to its right to loot a grave of some supplies. Descend into Burkenhundt's Tomb, and you'll soon pop up some stairs on the other side to the first part of the gardens. You need to descend some stairs and through the next gate to Auger's Embrace, the first necropolis portion of the level. Follow the path (there will be lot along the sides of the path and up to a garden separated from a field by a fence; in this area, by an altar, is the first tome (1/3) of the level. Nearby is an ammo box, which you can use to snipe the nearby field of enemies before proceeding into the Garden of Spirits. There's not much here, but you'll reach entrances into the very tight quarters of the tombs; stick together and move as fast as you can through here so you don't get pinned down, surrounded, or heavily damaged by something like a poison cloud. You'll reach another area you can drop down into, before ascending some stairs to the other side. The first grimoire (1/2) is accessed from this location; there's a series of ledges and columns you can use to leapfrog across the area you passed under to a ledge with the grimoire. There's another ammo box up here before you drop down into the next area; the passage forward into Von Vogelmann's Crypt is dead ahead of you, but hug the left wall and you'll reach a drainage tunnel, occasionally with some loot by it. Follow it to its end, and you'll find the next tome (2/3).

Remembers those skips I was talking about? There's one here that will let you bypass the entire crypt area. Near the tome is a large tree next to a crypt with a ladder on it. Climb up the ladder, and you can jump into one of the tree branches, then drop into another tree, and then hope over the fence into the next area. You won't be missing any tomes or grimoires doing this, so if you and your team can do it quickly, it can shave off a few minutes.

morr skip 1

morr skip 2

Either way, proceed through this outdoor area (there are pits here, so watch your footing) to reach the Old chapel ruin. In these tight quarters there will be a lot of health pickups, so make sure everyone is topped off and you're carrying what you can before heading through and dropping down into Peasant Hill. Here, the goal is to follow the path all the way around and reach the upper area, but again, there's a skip—you can hop on the headstones to the right of this area after you climb the stairs, and hop your way up to the bridge across.

At the end of this area is another drop down, but before you do, turn around and you'll find the next grimoire (2/2) here. When you're ready, drop into the Garden of Spirits.

This area can be a little confusing, but the main objective should be the final tome (3/3) in the maze, and then some loot right before the exit; when you drop down head right and follow the path to the tome first. The biggest danger in this area is either a rat ogre, or a pack of stormvermin; if you encounter either burn whatever supplies you need to kill them quickly, because it's a terrible spot to get surrounded. Out of the maze, you'll climb up some stairs, and there will be some more potential loot before you head down the path into the Citadel of Morr and onto the final event.

The objective here is as usual, to chop some chains. The order you go in is up to you, but be aware of the tricky geometry around here and the pit of noxious fluid you'll have to hop across. My best advice is to pay special attention that no one gets separated from the others and always have someone spotting the people chopping the chains. Once you've destroyed the chains, the area will drain (with a pit in the middle, that you'll need to remember for the "A Worth Sacrifice" achievement) and the path forward opens. From here, it's a relatively easy jaunt out into the gardens and through a tunnel to the waiting wagon.

Completing with all the tomes collected the first time will net you:

Black Guard

Collect all Tomes on Garden of Morr.

Black Guard
2 guidesOnline/OfflineSingle PlayerCooperativeCollectable

Nightmare Achievement: 'A Worthy Sacrifice'

This can be a difficult achievement, as it requires you to play virtually the entire mission fully encumbered with tomes and grimoires. If people have the Curse Ward trinket, they should equip it to boost their health when you've got the grimoires active. While playing, the most important task is to protect the Grimoire holders; if tome holders die you can retrieve their items, but if a Grimoire hero dies, you lose the grimoire and have wasted the run. What you have to do is play until the end and finish chopping the supports, dropping the cauldron down and draining the ooze from the encounter area. I recommend having all the heroes proceed up the stairs on the path out of the room (the long hallway), but stop at the entrance. Then, one by one, send the grimoire-encumbered heroes to jump into the hole left by the cauldron. They will die and respawn further down the hallway from where you are. Resurrect them, then send the next grimoire hero. Rinse and repeat with the tomes, and once everyone is back up, fight through the last portion of the level.

A Worthy Sacrifice

Drop all tomes and grimoires within Garden of Morr into the Cauldron on Nightmare

A Worthy Sacrifice
2 guidesOnline Game ModeCooperativeDifficulty Specific

Wheat and Chaff

[No Tomes or Grimoires]

Wheat and Chaff map

Wheat and Chaff is another nonlinear, single location map. Instead of barrels, this time we've got to cart grain sacks to the wagon. The annoyance level is correspondingly a little lower, as the grain sacks won't explode and respawn. You start off on the edge of the map and run towards a building by your wagon; loot it for supplies and then choose how you want to proceed.

There are three general locations for sacks, at A, B, and C. To speed things up ideally you'd have two sack carriers and two defenders; chuck the sacks down to ground level and defend against hordes, and then once the way is sufficiently thinned of enemies caravan your way back. The sack carriers can push away enemies, but they're going to be slow; speed trinkets will help mitigate this and if some members of your party have them I suggest making them the dedicated runners. At a certain point once you've gotten a few sacks in the wagon, a rat ogre will spawn.

There's not much else to this mission other than patience. Running this mission conventionally becomes much harder on higher difficulties, however there is are some exploits available to make things easier. First, for sacks you're delivering from the front of the wagon, you can actually get up to the wagon and chuck them through the area just to the left of the horses; it saves you a few seconds of having to go around the open end and throwing it in.

Secondly, there's a way to stop enemies from spawning in, just like "Black Powder". When you start, clear out the supplies in the house and then run to the left of the wagon. There will be a fence and then a cliffside, but heroes (and only heroes) can jump onto the right lip of this cliff, near the wagon and through the fence:

wheat exploit 1

From here, enemies will start pooling either above you or below you, while you're mostly safe from them. The vantage point looks like this:

wheat exploit 2

You're going to want to kill all the enemies below you and slice through enough to spawn the ogre. Once the ogre is dead, take care of any troublesome specials and wait for a horde horn to sound. Clear out any specials that spawn, and then you're going to want to send two players to be runners. Have them drop off the cliff and head directly to B. From here, they should work their way around the edges of the map, to avoid drawing aggression from the pooled numbers of mobs on the cliff. They can run the sacks two at a time, or try and collect them all close to the wagon for a quick capture of all of them. If another horn sounds or two many mobs are peeling off to attack the runners, the runners should circle back and jump onto the cliff and repeat the exercise; kill any mobs below you and any specials, wait until new reinforcements are only a trickle, and then run around the edge to gather the sacks.

Once all sacks are collected and everyone is in the wagon, the mission is over.

Nightmare Achievement: 'Special Delivery'

This achievement requires you to not drop a sack once you've picked it up until you reach the wagon. This is partially at the mercy of random spawns, as a flying assassin rat can ruin your run easily, or the rat ogre can hunt you down. You can use the exploit method listed above, although this one isn't too tough to do the regular way either assuming no specials ruin your day. Things that will make this easier are speed trinkets and potion shares (to share speed potion effects and get the escorts and sack carriers to the wagon faster.) I suggest starting with the most remote and difficult sacks first (either the ones by the manor house or the ones in the the lodge) in case something goes wrong, you won't have wasted time getting the easier ones by the pig farm.

Once you're done, you'll pop:

Special Delivery

Deliver all sacks to the wagon without dropping them once on Wheat and Chaff on Nightmare

Special Delivery
1 guideOnline/OfflineSingle PlayerCooperativeDifficulty Specific

That's all for Act II, so finishing will net you another achievement:

Resist

Complete act 2.

Resist
Online/OfflineSingle PlayerCooperativeMain Storyline

On to Act III!

Act III

The Enemy Below

3 Tomes / 2 Grimoires [Video guide courtesy Grecolas]

enemy below map

Welcome to Act III. The end (of the main campaign at least) is nearly in sight! This is another subterranean mission, but it's not too long nor too difficult; many people recommend running this mission later on when you're trying to boost XP quickly.

To start with, head into the sewers. You'll quickly come across some rats as you enter the sewer junction. If as you enter this area via the main path you head straight across to the other passage directly opposite, you'll reach a drop-down to some loot and can continue; either way both paths lead to a curving sewer junction with upper and lower paths and some scattered loot on the peripheries. The open areas make dealing with hordes troublesome, so moving as fast as you can through here is ideal.

The next area you'll reach is the Mandred Stairs. Stairs are generally for suckers, and you can safely hope your way down skipping a lot of the winding staircase, but there is the first grimoire (1/2) here; this requires a bit of a convoluted set of jumping paths so I recommend you watch the video, but basically you want to use the supports and arches to get into a separate room directly across from where you enter.

At the bottom of the stairs there are two exits, the one back towards the way you entered this area first has a chest and loot. Behind the blocked passageway in here is also the first tome (1/3), which you can with some difficulty just grab through the block. Otherwise, you can reach it later. Head back the way you came, through the only other path forward, and you'll hit another curving bit of sewer. If you hug the right wall you'll hit a small alley with some loot and the path to the tome; otherwise, the path leads to another large sewer junction with one path forward, down into the Skaven Tunnels.

The next room is a pain in the behind; the presence of an ammo box is probably the first indication. To progress, you'll need to run along a narrow set of wooden beams, and getting knocked off means going back to the beginning of the room and starting over. First, though, head into the water to the far end of the room; on a ledge here is the second tome (2/3). Once you've made it across, you'll head into the Under-Empire, which is a nasty warren of rather confusing tunnels, and often where you will get a rat ogre; in such tight confines, I recommend dumping all your bombs and potions to kill it fast, because a rat ogre with no room to maneuver plus extra rat spawns is a quick recipe to fail the mission. There's a chest and a few loot positions scattered throughout this area, but unless you're really running low on items, or are interested in the grimoire, I recommend just proceeding down the main path. That grimoire (2/2)? It's hidden in a cramped tunnel you'll need to crouch into, behind a fluttering red piece of cloth at the far end of the Under-Empire area. (You can hug the right-hand walls and eventually find it that way.) Proceeding on, you'll reach a blocked passage and a cavern to your right; the final tome (3/3) is hidden behind that wooden obstacle, so keep it in mind as you enter the cavern, hugging the left wall to loop around and grab the tome, then head back into the cavern; your way forward is the ramp at the far end.

Heading deeper into the Skaven nest, you'll reach a small room with some loot and a chest, and then a drop down into the event chamber. Here, it's time for more explosive barrel ferrying, because you need to blow up a big Skaven thingamajig. I recommend first clearing out the storm vermin guarding the only path to the contraption, and then do whatever strategy you like most for getting the barrels over there; I recommend placing the barrel at the top of the idol first, because I found it's remarkably easy to chuck it and somehow miss the target, necessitating you doing it again. Once all the bombs are in position, the blocked path forward will open. From now on, there's nothing but rats and some scattered loot; I recommend just booking it and using speed potions because dawdling will only make the final run to a ladder out of this area harder. Using bombs to either clear the way or stop any stragglers from hitting you in the back area recommended.

The final ladder leads to the Reikwald forest; there's a clearing with a house ahead of you, and on the other side is your wagon. It's easy to be lulled into a sense of security here; I've had specials ruin a run just because people stopped paying attention, so stick together and go home together.

For nabbing all the tomes on this mission, you'll get:

Mandred

Collect all Tomes on The Enemy Below.

Mandred
2 guidesOnline/OfflineSingle PlayerCooperativeCollectable

Nightmare Achievement: 'The Bell Tolls'

This is a bit different. You have to survive and kill a whopping 13 gutter runners during the mission. Under normal circumstances, there won't ever be that many unless you idle the mission, but there's a trick to spawning them—a bell in the Under-Empire cavern system (the area with the final tome) leading up to the final set of chambers before the ignition event contains a bell that, when rung, will spawn an equal number of gutter runners as human players.

bell tolls gutter runner

This means that you have to be ready and quickly dispatch the spawned specials before they can take out your entire team.

The Bell Tolls

Kill 13 Gutter Runners on The Enemy Below on Nightmare

The Bell Tolls
1 guideOnline/OfflineSingle PlayerCooperativeDifficulty Specific

Well Watch

[No Tomes or Grimoires]

well watch map

This mission is another short one that takes place in the same enclosed area, but it has distinct phases: either holding out, or defending one of two wells at opposite ends of the map. Where you decide to hold out, and where you decide to cover the wells, are entirely up to you. There are specific locations that have guaranteed ammo boxes; if you have an elf with a true flight bow parked by one, they can decimate incoming hordes while their flank is protected by the other characters. Under normal circumstances, you can let either well fall to skaven slaves that will dump poison into it, but you need at least one with some health left to win (otherwise it's a loss condition.) After two waves of well defense and a rat ogre, you'll get the notification to reach the wagon and end the mission.

For higher difficulties I recommend letting the pauper well fall and camping yourself up at the overlook with the ammo box. Your only major threat here is poison rats, as you and the other players will be fairly close together and there's a lot of geometry to get caught on in a mad dash to bug out. I recommend having one shield character dedicated to sticking by the elf and dealing with the enemies that will climb up the fence here, while the other two move out onto the roof and try and spot any specials or hordes before they move back into a more defensible position. As long as you're taking care of enemies behind the elf, she can freely snipe the few enemies that head to the burgher well, while the majority of enemies will instead head to your force. When the ogre comes, heal up and decamp to the ground so you can safely kite him and to get any additional supplies, and then either head to the burgher well or back up to your original position for the final defense wave.

Nightmare Achievement: 'Not on Your Watch'

This can be tough; you need to prevent both wells from falling, and on Nightmare they can get poisoned really fast. My suggestion is to have two frontline characters tanking most of the attention and minded by another player, with the fourth mostly dedicated to making sure the well doesn't fall. Using a conflagration staff on the wizard makes her rather adept at clearing any potential rats from poisoning the wells, as all the poisoners are basic skaven slaves and die quickly even on high difficulties. You'll have to protect each well and finish the mission.

Not On Your Watch

Complete Well Watch without either of the wells being poisoned on Nightmare

Not On Your Watch
1 guideOnline/OfflineSingle PlayerCooperativeDifficulty Specific

Waterfront

[No Tomes or Grimoires]

waterfront map

This is the final "short" mission of the game, and consists of two major phases. Unique compared to most missions is you can actually choose which objective to tackle first. To start out with, you're going to want to scavenge supplies from the courtyard and paths to each warehouse. Stick together and move as a group; in the center of the Dockhand's Pitch courtyard area is an ammo box, which you'll want to remember later on. Personally, I choose to head to the right (from the start zone) and head up the path to the first warehouse (or "Warehouse #3" as the game calls it). In here, you'll have to fetch explosive barrels (yay, said no one ever) and throw them onto the supports of the central structure. I recommend splitting up into pairs; one group will head up and throw the barrels down (watch where you throw them, as they can fall into the void and you'll have to fetch them again) while the other two stay on the ground floor, thinning out the ranks and throwing the barrels from above in a relay fashion whenever the coast is clear. For the center barrel, make sure you head out onto the plank and get close enough, otherwise you'll just chuck the barrel into the void and need to redo it. Once all the barrels are in place, the adjacent door will open and you'll have to fight your way into a courtyard. There should be plenty of healing here, so thin out the enemies, heal up, and then head to the second warehouse.

In this warehouse, you'll have to destroy four pillars, two on either side of the building with a chasm in between. Under normal circumstances, I suggest sticking together and having one or two people watch the backs of the other players who will whittle away the supports, but if you're fast and competent you can split up to finish it faster. Once this is done another door will blow open and you'll reach another exterior courtyard with more supplies.

Now, your objective is to survive until your boat returns. There's a guaranteed rat ogre that will spawn. You can choose where you want to fight; I suggest staying in the center courtyard where possible, with your back to a more defendable position, and then if you're forced back head towards the docks so if necessary someone can make a mad dash to the boat to finish the mission if the worst happens. Any downed heroes will spawn in the same sunken area in the pitch; this area is very easy to get surrounded and trapped in so depending on how many skaven there are, you may need a bomb to clear a safe path or else leave your buddy tied up. If you fight on the southwest waterfront area, be aware that it's entirely possible to get KO'd by the ogre knocking you so far back you instantly go into the water and drown. Once the boat arrives, head back to where you started and the mission is over.

Nightmare Achievement: 'Coordinated Assault'

This one really relies on good potion sharing trinkets and communication. To start with, scour the entire area between the warehouses for potions; if you don't get at least one potion, preferably two, just restart. Next, move as a group to the explosive barrels warehouse. You're going to want to send a single person in to do the barrels, while everyone else hangs out right before the point of no return on the door, helping out as much as they can with controlling mobs for the lone runner inside. If they go down, wait for them to die, fetch them from the re spawn point, and keep going. Once nearly all the barrels are in position, the other three should head over to the entryway to the next warehouse; it will be blocked. Then, synchronize throwing the final barrel and escaping the warehouse with popping a speed or strength potion just as the entry to the next warehouse clears. You want to to get to work hacking at the four supports in here as fast as possible to escape in under a minute; I recommend splitting the party, with two people heading left to clear out the closer supports while the third person heads for the most remote one, across the chasm and up the stairs. Send the third person with an extra potion and bombs if you have it, so they can clear out the enemies that will probably mob you as you approach the stairs or as you try to get down. If the fourth support is still up, converge on it and then clear the area as fast as possible. If you want, have a timekeeper so you know roughly how long you've been; we were able to clear the warehouse within forty seconds or so.

Coordinated Assault

Escape the second warehouse within 60 seconds of escaping the first on Waterfront on Nightmare

Coordinated Assault
1 guideOnline Game ModeCooperativeDifficulty SpecificTime/Date

The White Rat

Tomes: 0; Grimoires: 1

white rat map

The final mission of the main campaign. This one can be a doozy, because the rats will be constantly coming at you fast and furious. Sticking together is crucial for this mission.

To start will, make your way down to the door and gather up the supplies before proceeding into the rat's lair (there is a single grimoire (1/1) here, which you can access by hopping across some wall pieces near the stairs heading down into the central area here and using them to access a far building. Unless you're a masochist ignore it, there's no achievement for extra pain inflicted upon yourself.) The wizard rat will begin his spiel; cross the bridge and assemble next to the crystal. These crystals will shoot damaging lightning when the bell tolls; make sure you're not under them when that happens. The first lightning blast will break open the path to drop down into a area filled with more crystals. You need to make your way across here and chop the chain, opening the path forward.

Rather than jump down immediately, I suggest holding out at this position. There are a guaranteed number of waves that will always spawn in this area, plus an additional one full of stormvermin that will spawn when you chop the chain. On higher difficulties you can easily get overwhelmed in the open areas below. Instead, position shield players at the wooden bridge and have them bash away; most of the reinforcements will drop down from directly above you and thus you can knock most of them into oblivion easily. A player with a long-range weapon such as a bow, crossbow, or rifle can snipe the stormvermin guarding the chain from up here. Chances are they will either kill them, or aggro them to face you in this more manageable position rather than having to deal with them and their friends later on. As long as you quickly deal with specials (which should be fairly easy as they have a tendency to drop down directly in front of you) you should be able to clear the main waves. Once you've taken care of three or four groups of reinforcements, jump down. Hug the rock cliff side of this clearing and take out the strays as you work your way around to the chain. Once you've taken it down, be ready to dump bombs on the stormvermin that come at you; if you need to withdraw, jump over the edge to the bottom area and use the crystals here to help thin the herd. Once you've cleared these enemies and the door to the upper area is open, they by and large won't spawn any more until you hit the next trigger area on the stairs. If a hero goes down during this process, they'll spawn in the same area every time—through the door but before the stairs in the next chamber. Before heading up the stairs scavenge the supplies and ammo on an outer ledge and heal up. Then take the staircase.

Because nothing says "most aggravating part of Vermintide" like "ferry explosive barrels..." Guess what? There's more explosive barrels! You'll have to get three barrels all the way to the center of this area to bomb the center support section. My advice is to be safe here, because more than any other mission losing a barrel makes things much, much harder for you. The quarters are confined and the rats will pore in from basically everywhere. To start with, grab the first barrel you see and head to the right; there's a hole ahead and to the right as you walk into the center room here you can chuck the barrel through before rats start surrounding you, and it should be pretty safe from lighting strikes or accidental damage. Then, work your way around the edge, chucking barrels forward. If possible, you want to get them to the ledge overlooking the bridge to the column, since that's a fairly safe area for them to be and you can quickly ferry them, just worrying about clearing out the path in front of you and to the side. There are also almost always potions here which can make quickly getting the barrels over without taking damage or getting overwhelmed much easier. Take your time to make sure it's safe, since it'll cost you more time to go find the barrels when they respawn. Once you've bombed the tower, a path further up will drop down. Now you're in the final stage. Resupply and head up. Your task is now to chop some chains, but you'll have reinforcements and a rat ogre involved.

There's actually an option to make this much easier that you might consider on higher difficulties, like with "Wheat and Chaff". When you ascend the stairs to the final area, you'll see a path across the scaffolds back towards the floor above the area where the barrels were:

white rat exploit 1

Head in this direction past one of the chains, and you'll find some openings in the wall that look down on the previous floor.

white rat exploit 2

From here, jump down to a ledge (often with healing:)

white rat exploit 3

Here you can hug the small lip around this wall and walk along an invisible path here.

white rat exploit 4

Most enemies can't touch you and will congregate below, including the ogre. There's also a open ledge at one end; if players get close to it they will hang off it; if another player "rescues" them they will pop up above the ledge. By luring the ogre here and killing it, you can then safely gather a bunch of rats below you, while two or three heroes slip away and work their way around the perimeter with fewer rats to worry about, destroying chains. This is a really useful strategy on Nightmare and Cataclysm; on lower difficulties it's not hard to play through it normally. If you choose to play normally, where to fight the rat ogre is up to you, although I suggest burning as much explosives, potions, and ammo as you need to kill it quickly; it's harder to avoid his swipes in this mission and it's easy to get knocked off an edge and get killed by a few rats taking potshots at you. Once he's down, stick together and have just one or two people attack the chains while the others defend and manage numbers, and be mindful of the damaging crystals by each chain—let whoever is hacking at the supports know if there's an imminent electric strike coming. You'll work your way around the edge, and (in the smallest of mercies) you don't have to rush to another dang wagon once the final chain is done. Instead you'll get a cutscene and the mission ends. Congratulations!

Retaliate

Complete act 3.

Retaliate
Online/OfflineSingle PlayerCooperativeMain Storyline

With all missions done on easy or normal, you'll also pick up:

Defenders Of Ubersreik

Complete all Missions. (Easy or Normal).

Defenders Of Ubersreik
Online/OfflineSingle PlayerCooperativeMain StorylineStackable

Nightmare Achievement: 'Collateral Benefit'

This is a tough achievement, because it requires you to spend a lot of time in the exposed first area of this mission with the crystals, and deliberately not killing storm vermin. Your goal is to bait them and bash them into the spots where the lightning strikes hit, which will kill them for you. It may take some time to get the timing down, but after the first strikes you'll see scorch marks on the ground so it should be easy to know where to knock them. Baiting individual storm vermin from their guarding position around the chain to the next area is an easy to way to get you donor rats without waiting around to be consumed by other specials. You'll have to kill five stormvermin this way and then complete the entire mission afterwards.

Collateral Benefit

Kill 5 Stormvermin with Skaven technology on White Rat and then complete the mission on Nightmare

Collateral Benefit
1 guideOnline/OfflineSingle PlayerCooperativeDifficulty Specific

Replay

That was fine, right? Now prepare to play the entire campaign again many, many times. Hard difficulty is up next; this can actually be in my opinion the hardest difficulty after Cataclysm, because you can still matchmake missions for this but you'll find teammates who really should not be playing hard mode. Beating one mission will net you:

Gauntlet

Complete one mission on Hard.

Gauntlet
Online/OfflineSingle PlayerCooperativeMain StorylineDifficulty SpecificStackable

Followed by:

Saviours of Reikland

Complete all missions on Hard.

Saviours of Reikland
Online/OfflineSingle PlayerCooperativeMain StorylineDifficulty SpecificStackable

Then comes Nightmare. The biggest difference here is that you can be affected by friendly fire, so you'll have to watch your ranged weapon shots or bomb throws. Complete a single mission or the entire campaign to earn, respectively:

Trial By Fire

Complete one mission on Nightmare.

Trial By Fire
Online/OfflineSingle PlayerCooperativeDifficulty SpecificStackable

Champions of the Empire

Complete all missions on Nightmare.

Champions of the Empire
1 guideOnline/OfflineSingle PlayerCooperativeDifficulty SpecificStackable

Finally, Cataclysm. You're going to want to wait until you have the best possible gear and weapons for this, and you'll want an excellent team, but once it's done, it's definitely the hardest part of this game complete. If you want to save yourself some pain, using the exploits mentioned in this guide as well as watching pros play through the missions is a good way of getting a feel for how to complete a mission. If you keep losing on a given mission, take a break and try another one; sometimes even if you're with a good team some bad luck and positioning will throw your run into chaos, and playing angry and annoyed is a good way in my experience to keep making mistakes.

End Times Excursion

Complete one mission on Cataclysm.

End Times Excursion
Online/OfflineSingle PlayerCooperativeDifficulty SpecificStackable

Heroes of the End Times

Complete all missions on Cataclysm.

Heroes of the End Times
1 guideOnline/OfflineSingle PlayerCooperativeDifficulty SpecificStackable

Now, there are still a few achievements you'll get while on this grind, and a few more achievements to mop up alongside the campaign, so let's dive into those on the next page.

Miscellaneous Achievements

While working your way through the campaign, you will continue leveling up. Once you reach LVL 30, you will unlock the final trinket slot on your character and an achievement:

Trinkaholic

Unlock the Third Trinket Slot.

Trinkaholic
1 guideOnline/OfflineSingle PlayerCooperativeLevel

From here, the only other progression-related achievement is getting to LVL 100, which is a grind. Don't worry about this at all until after you've finished all the other achievements in this guide.

Karl Franz

Reach Rank 100.

Karl Franz
3 guidesOnline/OfflineSingle PlayerCooperativeLevel

As you go up in difficulty, you'll also start getting shots at exotic (orange) weapons, either through completing quests or through Ranald's Bones. Getting your first exotic item equipped nets you:

Force of Nature

Acquire any item of Exotic quality.

Force of Nature
1 guideOnline/OfflineSingle PlayerCooperative

Eventually you'll want all your characters kitted out in exotic or better weapons, with all their weapon perks unlocked and maximized through the anvil and shrine. You'll need all exotic items equipped on a single character for the "Connoisseur" achievement; that means unique red weapons or headgear doesn't count. The weapons will be easy enough to come by, but getting exotic trinkets is tough, and you'll also require an exotic headgear (even though that doesn't provide you with any stats); the best way to get these is through the bounty board.

Once you've finally equipped exotic gear in all slots on a character, you'll get:

Connoisseur

Equip a Exotic item in every slot on a single character.

Connoisseur
1 guideOnline/OfflineSingle PlayerCooperativeLevel

Another achievement you should get through normal play is completing a mission with every hero. You're going to have a favorite set of heroes by the end, but being able to play every character at least decently is an important skill, and will help you earn:

Furious Five

Complete a Mission as Every Hero.

Furious Five
1 guideOnline/OfflineSingle PlayerCooperative

Finally, as you're continually churning through upgrading and dismantling items, you should earn these from forge usage:

Grungni

Fuse 25 items in the forge.

Grungni
1 guideOnline/OfflineSingle PlayerCooperativeCumulative +Level

Imperial Salvager

Salvage 100 Items.

Imperial Salvager
1 guideOnline/OfflineSingle PlayerCooperativeCumulative +Level

So all that's left in the base game is Last Stand.

Last Stand

Last Stand is Vermintide's take on a horde mode. You have to survive as long as possible against waves of skaven, receiving occasional resupply and endurance badges once you clear enough waves.

The first wave you clear, you'll nab:

One Down, Endless To Go

Complete a wave in Last Stand.

One Down, Endless To Go
1 guideOnline/OfflineSingle PlayerCooperative

And the first endurance badge you grab will net you:

Finders, keepers

Collect 1 Endurance Badges in Last Stand.

Finders, keepers
1 guideOnline/OfflineSingle PlayerCooperative

What that leaves is getting a Bronze, Silver and Gold medal on the "Town Hall" level, as well as collecting 199 more endurance badges. Difficulty in Last Stand increases as you go; Veteran difficulty starts you at wave 1, with the difficulty at hard. At Wave 14, difficulty increases to Nightmare (Champion mode), and Wave 27 increases to Cataclysm (Heroic mode). So to get Bronze you need to clear 13, Silver 26, and for Gold you must beat wave 39, either starting from Wave 1, 14, or 27 (with the access to the latter options achieved by clearing that wave.) It's probably best to start your gold attempt from the beginning, but you can start from Heroic too (that's how I got the achievement personally.) You'll want competent team members kitted out with healing, potion share, and item duplication trinkets (to try and stretch your meager supplies.) In general you should only heal someone when they're in white health (since that way you're basically getting 'free' health before consuming precious supplies), and having at least two players using weapons that don't require ammo (such as the Dwarf's drakefire pistols) will ensure there's more ammo left for the other ranged characters. Getting bronze and silver is pretty easy compared to gold, so you'll probably get it after a few goes if you've got acceptably kitted-up characters or allies:

Stalwart

Get Silver on Town Meeting.

Stalwart
Online/OfflineSingle PlayerCooperativeStackable

Defiant

Get Bronze on Town Meeting.

Defiant
1 guideOnline/OfflineSingle PlayerCooperativeStackable

There are multiple locations around the map to choose as your holdout locations. The raised scaffolds along the edge of the map give you good vision of incoming enemies and have ramps to funnel enemy rats onto. There's also a beam that a character can hop onto and be immune to most attacks (a good spot to park a witch sniper.) But this holdout location is exposed to enemy specials and rats can come at you from three locations as well as dropping down from above—you're also located very far from the market and woodpile, which are where your heroes will spawn when downed. Along the eastern edge of the map (across from you when surveyed from your starting point) there are holdout spots where you can put your back to a tunnel. This allows you a very defendable position, and also allows you to mow down reinforcements as they spawn in said tunnels; the downside is that if you aren't paying attention, those reinforcements that spawn behind you will tear you to pieces, especially on a stormvermin wave, and you have few options for extricating yourself if something goes pear-shaped.

The location I ended up getting the achievement was the fenced-in area near the woodpile. The rats have to run around or hop above the fences, and can easily be funneled down into natural killzones. I found that enemy ratling gunners were in fact a blessing, as they would tear through enemy rats with their limited sightlines. The downside of this location is that there's few places to run; using bombs and special ammo to clear out stormvermin is essential and gas rats should be prioritized at all times.

last stand location

If you're going to try this location, I recommend the witch as a conflagration staff will tear through skaven in such confined quarters (just be mindful of friendly fire) and the elf with a good bow (she can stand on the chests in the corner of this area to peek above the fences and shoot incoming specials.) Whenever there's a rat ogre wave, clear out any specials, move to the center of the map, and try to kite the ogre until you've killed any miscellaneous rats; then taking down the rat ogre should be fairly simple. Double ogre waves should be dealt with much the same, but try and focus down one at a time; make sure to call out if the rat ogre switches its attention from you to an ally, so no one gets caught unprepared and not blocking. As long as you don't get hit by another enemy or caught on geometry, you can indefinitely kite the ogre with good timing and blocks.

Once you've cleared wave 39 and the game ends, you'll get:

Unbreakable

Get Gold on Town Meeting.

Unbreakable
1 guideOnline/OfflineSingle PlayerCooperativeStackable

After that, what's left is the endurance badges. You can play either the Town Hall or The Fall level for this. You can see how long you last (do this on easy because there's no point besides maoschism on doing it on the harder difficulties, unless you want to use Last Stand to grind XP as well) or alternatively, you can start a level from the beginning, finish the wave, get the first badge and then quit and restart (this may be a decent strategy because I found on long games I was very often getting disconnected at the end and losing my progress and badges.) Either way, after you've gotten the required number you'll get:

Tenacious

Collect 200 Endurance Badges in Last Stand.

Tenacious
2 guidesOnline/OfflineSingle PlayerCooperativeCumulative +

While you'll probably still be working on the higher difficulty achievements, the badges, or the LVL 100 achievements at this point, you can work on those while still proceeding with the multiple DLC packs, detailed on the following pages.

Drachenfels DLC

There's actually no achievements tied directly to this DLC. Rather, you'll have to play through these missions, collecting the tomes therein, because these DLC missions do appear to count for the "collect all tomes achievement".

Once you've gotten the tomes on this mission and have the ones from the main base game, you'll get:

Balthasar Gelt

Collect all Tomes.

Balthasar Gelt
2 guidesOnline/OfflineSingle PlayerCooperativeCollectableExternal Content

Now, on to the missions.

Castle Drachelfels

3 Tomes / 2 Grimoires [Video guide courtesy Rats Chats]

You start off outside the eponymous castle, but you'll pop into it soon enough. Proceed along the Grey Mountain Path until you reach the Castle Bridge. Check the chest up on the broken bridge, as well as another loot location in the coffin near the ledge below, and then head towards the cliff where there's a gap into the castle. Inside the catacombs, hug the left wall; you'll follow it to a side passage that loops around to the first tome (1/3). Backtrack to the main path and you'll reach an open area with stairs to the left and right. Keep right, passing by a small room with some possible loot, and keep hugging the right walls to another room, with a junction to the left and right. The right you'll reach later if you're going for grimoires, so head left. You'll go up some stairs to a room with a blood fountain (what scenery!) and a path tot he right to follow. You'll come to another room with railings and a chandelier above some charnal design; you want to drop down into this lower area.

drach_grim1_1

There's only one path down here, filled with cobwebs and designs on the floor that sometimes trigger spiky traps. Good to know for the future: hug the side walls when going through Drachenfel's passages. Before you head down the passage though, grab the grimoire (1/1) to the right. You'll end up in a small room with an opening to crouch through: this will take you back to a passage that leads back up to the Blood room. Retrace your steps (it goes without saying you can skip this last bit if you don't want the grimoire) past the bone chandelier room to a room withs stairs that lead upward to the castle interior.

In the next room, hit the switch and be ready for a flood of enemies. Once they're cleared, before you jump down into the great hall, hug the right wall and you'll reach a small side room, where you'll find the second tome (2/3).

drach_tome2_1

drach_tome2_2

Drop down to the Hall of the Poison Feast and head to the far right of the room to exit. What follows are a series of galleries on the ground floor, with loot to either side. I recommend hugging the right; after a side passage with loot to the side, you'll head up to the west wing, where to the right there will be another side room:

drach_tome3_1

In here is the third and final tome (3/3).

drach_tome3_2

Exit and head to the other end of the hall and continue along the path. Keep going and you'll eventually reach an ammo box with a hole in the floor. Your path to continue is down this way, but if you're looking to max your loot, you need to jump across.

drach_grim2_1

Head to the end of the passage, hang a right, and then head to the very last room here (by the broken stairs at the end. Hidden on top of the bookshelf here is the final grimoire (2/2):

drach_grim2_2

Either way, you'll end up dropping down when you're ready.

The next area is the inner sanctum, and it's the event portion of the mission.

The room has a bunch of stone statuettes you need to ferry over to the central statue; it's basically barrel-fetching, except a) you move much slower, and b) the statuettes mercifully don't explode. Since you're even more exposed if you're a runner, speed potions and moving as a group is advised. To save a bit of time, you can jump from the top wings down to the railing of the stairs to quickly deposit the statues, taking only minimal fall damage. Be careful when you go for a statuette, because they are usually guarded by multiple stormvermin. Once you've placed all three statuettes (or sometimes, oddly, just two of them) the chalice will appear. When you grab it, a trapdoor will open that drops you right back into the catacombs.

From here, it's basically a straight shot. The only frustrating part is sometimes obstacles will pop up, blocking your path and forcing you to backtrack in the narrow side passages, so be careful you don't get bottled in. It's annoying and dumb, but after a short period you'll pop out a hole in the wall to the Forlorn Gorge. Take a right here, and you'll reach your wagon and the end of the mission.

The Dungeons

2 Tomes / 1 Grimoires [Video guide courtesy 360TV]

This mission is annoying and frustrating; you'll see why. To start with, re-enter Drachenfels castle. Proceed forward, watching out for those spike pressure plates you saw briefly last mission. You'll reach the atrium; head through it to the "Pillars of Despair", which is a ridiculous name for a room but whatever. Proceeding through here you'll reach a room where the light disappears except for the torches; this near-blackness is something you're gonna' have to get used to, but it's just a short room here to pass through. You'll reach a passage of desolation or destitution or desperation or whatever it is, with stairs by the end; it's here that you'll find a grimoire (1/1).

dungeons_grim1_1

It's llocated at the very top corner in the stairwell; you'll need to hop on a piece of masonry and a spikey wheel-thing sticking out to reach it.

dungeons_grim1_2

Either way, keep going and you'll head back the length of the passage, then have to cross two gaps (this is incredibly frustration, because first-person jumping is never fun, and even the computer can't often figure out how to do it.)

On the other side you'll head up some stairs and come to this passage:

The first tome (1/1) is across this room, but you'll have to get to it by hopping on the broken vase here to get onto the railing.

dungeons_tome1_1

dungeons_tome1_2

The pain with this is once you've got the tome, you can't head back the way you came; instead you have to run across the ledges here to drop down to the pillars of despair room, back through the passage of desolation, and then across the jumping section again. Keep together for this so you don't get picked off by specials.

The next area is the Gaoler's Domain, and this is where potions and bombs are going to be very necessary. There's only a small passage where rats will pore into from the walls and everywhere else once you pull the lever to enter it; clear the path to the artifact (a skull), grab it, and then drop down as fast as you can through the gate to leave the castle. You'll reach the Morose Vista, where there's another tome (2/2). To reach it, hug the left side to see a light up on the cliff.

dungeons_tome2_1

You can climb up here to find Alexander's grave, and the tome.

dungeons_tome2_2

Proceed along the path to find a hole to drop down into. Hello darkness my old friend; the next section is pitch black like earlier, save for the torch you have to bring with you. This is annoying as hell, especially if you're doing this solo. Best advice I have is to keep moving and hug a wall. Head into the shadow gallery, down the stairs to the Hall of Obscurity; one of the paths to the right will be blocked, but either way that's the route you want to go (be careful of the pressure plates.) You'll reach a pit with only one ladder, on your side—you have to get across the beams without falling off. This is actually easier with one person rather than a crew, because the bots will teleport to you if you cross successfully while novice players who fall down will have to be rescued with the entire team, because they're useless out of the range of the torchlight. So have fun with that.

Keep going to a stairwell and head down into the bone chambers. Eventually you'll cross a gap and find a second torch you can take with you. Up the stairs there will be an open room with a pit and plank across it.

If you want the second grimoire (2/2), you'll need to drop down here and follow the passage to the gargoyle, where there's a lever hidden in the ceiling.

dungeons_grim2_1

dungeons_grim2_2

Exit this area back to the pit, and you'll need to backtrack all the way back to the large stairwell. In one of the side passages off the stairwell room, there will be a hidden door that's now open in the wall; enter it to find the grimoire on a desk.

Either way, keep going, grabbing the third torch here, and quickly make your way to the relic chamber. There's light here, for now—strategically chuck the torches in spots so that you can see what enemies are coming. I recommend picking a corner and sticking torches around it. Then, grab the relic; the light will go out and the mobs will pore in. The biggest danger is the specials, who can catch you off-guard with the limited visibility, and then the rat ogre when it comes; I recommend dumping everything you have when he arrives to thin everything out and weaken or kill him. Soon after, the door to continue will open (it will be the door to the right of the chalice as you entered the area)—head through here, using the lever to open the next door, and then drop the torches as you drop down. In the next area, the light will quickly return, and it's mostly a pretty easy fight uphill, a la the end of The Enemy Below. One you reach the top, you'll reach the dreary outdoors and the wagon to end the mission.

Summoner's Peak

1 Tome / 1 Grimoire [Video guide courtesy 360TV]

The main gimmick of this mission is a series of defense/protection setups in different locations. To start with, run along the cliff edge aka "The Path of Woe", gathering up supplies as you go. You'll eventually reach the Portal of Decay, depression with a Skaven portal at one end and the contraption powering it on the other. You need to pull the switch on the generator mechanism, causing it to slowly overheat. Reinforcements will come to crush you, but like with "Well Watch", Skaven slaves will also prioritize the generator—instead of dribbling poison in, they'll instead bail water into the generator, slowing down the heating process. Thus having someone prioritize guarding the generator will help speed things up and reduce the number of enemies you face. Enemies in this area and the next ones will funnel through chokepoints, so weapons like Hagbane bows or fireball staves will really help here, as well as big shield characters to knock back and help disrupt hordes.

Once you've disabled the first generator, the path forward will clear. You can head up in the rocks and then across the bridges to the Snagglefang encampment. If you hug the left side of this area, you'll find a cliff you can drop down to, where the lone grimoire (1/1) can be found.

summoners_grim1_1

Be careful jumping back across the chasm after recovering this grimoire because it's easy to miss the jump. Continuing on you'll reach the next generator, using all the ammo you want. For this one, you can't reach the generator directly, and the arena is close to several ledges, so minding your position is important. There is an ammo box to one side, so a player can reign down serious damage from this position as long as they aren't flanked. This holdout will also feature the appearance of an ogre, who should be prioritized immediately; it's easy for the ogre to wreck havoc and knock players off cliffs if you don't quickly deal with him. After the generator has overheated, you can continue climbing up to Camp Scabclaw.

Above and behind the second Skaven portal, there was a series of ruins. Here is the single tome (1/1) of the map (though the game thinks there's three); to reach it, just follow the stone steps down to the ledge.

summoners_tome1_1

summoners_tome1_2

Proceeding along the path, you'll jump across a gap and ascend up to an overlook for the final holdout location, Grandfather's Summit, with the generator in the middle. The rats here will generally funnel through some lower cramped passageways. Hagbane bows raining down poison clouds into these areas does tremendous damage, and if you keep a player on the overlook they can actually run back to the ammo box and back (though that obviously leaves one hero on their own and potentially grabbed by a special.) You'll get another ogre during this campaign, as well as some nasty stormvermin groups, but this is the final setup so feel free to use everything you've got to push the rats back. Once the generator is overloaded, it's a short drop from the newly-opened path down to the wagon, and that's this DLC complete.

On to the next DLC!

Karak Azgaraz DLC

The Karak Azgaraz DLC consists of three missions. As with the rest of the DLC going forward, there's a special weapon for the dwarf, Bardin's Pick. How soon you get this depends on RNG, but make sure whatever character you're playing has Bardin's Trinket on to maximize your chances. Then, once you've got it, you're going to want to kill a stormvermin that's part of a patrol in one hit. Aiming for the head, charging up your shot, and taking a strength potion beforehand will all increase your chances of doing it, which will earn you:

Pick His Brain

Kill a Stormvermin in one blow using Bardin's Pick

Pick His Brain
3 guidesOnline/OfflineSingle PlayerCooperative

On to the missions, which have an unmissable achievement for completing each one, as well as a mission-specific achievement we'll discussion in a separate section a the end. For this content (and the rest of the DLC), you don't need any tomes or grimoires for any achievements, so I won't be pointing them out or providing maps, but you can find visual guides easily on Youtube if you're interested (for example, for satisfying contracts that take place on these missions.) Let's get started.

Khazid Kro

This isn't a difficult mission, but it's unusual in that it has two different events, one of which has an achievement tied to it. To begin, head down and to the right, entering a large area with lava. Proceed across the bridge and down into a series of passageways—there is often loot squirreled away in the dead ends. You'll wind through a series of storerooms to reach the Grand Chasm, and then a large room with a statue and two possible exits (both contain a tome but otherwise lead to the same place.) You'll reach the brewery, where the unseen dwarf Halgrim on the other end of a megaphone will conscript you to hold out in this area, crisscrossing the brewery to relieve pressure from some valves. This can get tricky, as when the fog increases it's very hard to navigate, and especially to spot specials. Doing this in a short period of time, though, nets you an achievement: if you don't get it the first time, it's easy to blitz through this section on a low difficulty, dumping potions and bombs to speed things up to get it:

Gathering Steam

Khazid Kro: Complete the Brewery event in less than 240 seconds

Gathering Steam
1 guideOnline/OfflineSingle PlayerCooperativeTime/Date

After turning a bunch of valves, Halgrim will let you proceed, but now you'll have to bomb some skaven tunnels. Head through the construction site and into the maintenance tunnels to a large room with another megaphone. Here Halgrim will task you with ferrying explosives to the designated spots to collapse the tunnels. There's only one explosive at a time, so move as a group to assist the runner—unlike the old explosive barrel issues, you don't need to worry about taking damage as much as getting the timed explosives in place fast enough, which can be tough with a horde. To get the Perfect Timing achievement, all you have to do is throw an explosive into place when it's nearly about to explode. You can get a rough gauge for the state of the explosive by its fuse—throw it when it's turned orange, and you'll nab this one:

Perfect Timing

Khazid Kro: Get timed explosives in place with less than two seconds left

Perfect Timing
1 guideOnline/OfflineSingle PlayerCooperativeTime/Date

You'll have to bomb three tunnels, but your reward is an open door with the wagon to end the mission just beyond it. Beating "Khazid Kro" gets you:

By Valaya!

Complete: Khazid Kro

By Valaya!
Online/OfflineSingle PlayerCooperativeMain Storyline

The Cursed Rune

This one is a bit longer and more involved, and comes with a really tough mission-specific achievement as well. To start off, head through the forest outskirts towards the bridge across the chasm. If you're lucky, there will be a potion or other useful loot drop directly ahead of you; if you're going for the "Ironbreaker" achievement (detailed at the end of this section) then getting speed potions will be greatly helpful. Across the rope bridge the path to continue is to the left, but if you head around the right you can grab an easy tome at the end of the path (there's also some chests and possible loot along this path, so you might as well check it out regardless.)

Cresting the hill will take you to the Main Road and some dwarf structures. Fillow the cliffs around to a ladder up to the main part of the structure, and then head through the gate and a series of ravines to Wyraz Varn, a frozen lake with some goodies scattered around its edges. Shortly after that is the Mad Dog Mine, your objective. Head up the stairs on the right and work your way up to the rail yards, and then through a series of twisty passages filled with rats (and dead dwarves.) After another set of stairs you'll reach an elevator leading down into the next area, with supplies right by it to stock up before the descent. When you're ready, take the lift down into the quarry.

Start the event by interacting with the door and then grabbing the casket within. You'll have to hod out against numerous waves of rats, so pick your holdout point. After the interminable waves, you'll get a notice to escape the quarry and the scaffolding path will open up. Leave the quarry and take the path up and around to the wagon to end the mission. Beating "The Cursed Rune" will net you:

Smash And Grab

Complete: The Cursed Rune

Smash And Grab
Online/OfflineSingle PlayerCooperativeMain Storyline

Ironbreaker Achievement

This achievement requires you to take no damage during the quarry event—defined as when you start the elevator down into the quarry and then the entire holdout sequence. This is aggravating. If you want to play it legitimately, the best option is holding up in the tomb itself, but all it takes is a gutter runner or a gas rat to ruin your run and given the reduced sightlines, that's pretty easy. As such, I (and most others) got the achievement by cheesing it, though even there it's not without its frustrations. To make things faster, given that this achievement requires playing through basically the entire mission to get to it, do it on Easy.

If you head to the back of the quarry area (hugging the left cliff as you enter the quarry area) you'll come across this big rock:

cursed rune ironbreaker rock

Here's the trick: by getting as close to this rock as possible and then falling off the edge, triggering the "hanging from the ledge, someone save me" mode on your character, you will materialize inside this rock once rescued. With everyone in turn falling off the side and being pulled up, the entire team can end up inside this rock, (mostly) safe from all enemies (more on this later.) You can then basically wait out the quarry sequence, mostly killing enemies from safety within the rock (you can hit stuff outside, they have a hard time hitting you within.) You can see a video example of this process [HERE].

Here are the wrinkles: first, someone needs to actually trigger the event, which means there will be a single character out there who is exposed and a perfect target for a special skaven spawn. I recommend having a dedicated runner, equipped with a speed trinket and a speed potion. Once you've set up every other character in the rock, he or she will run over to trigger the event, pop the potion and hoof it back, hopefully without being ambushed.

My recommendations based on the many times I had to do this is to make sure everyone's fully healed at the item drop before heading down the elevator, and have non-ranged characters basically blocking the entire time while ranged characters pick off the few rats that are down here at the start (be very careful for specials, especially stranglers, who seemed to like to come out of the woodwork without provocation—on my ultimately-successful run for the achievement one of our party was actually grabbed by one but we fortunately managed to immediately kill it before it did damage. Everyone should be keeping an eye on their health gauge and letting people know when they take accidental damage, because it's going to happen and you might as well save the five minutes of frustration when you think you've finished and no achievement pops.

Inside the rock, you're not immune to damage—gas clouds from a gas rat could still poison you, for instance, so prioritize those specials immediately. Likewise, while you might be tempted to hack and slash through all the mobs, shifting around too much inside the cramped confines of the rock could push one of your allies out of it, and thus subjecting them to immediate damage. To keep safe, again have the non-ranged characters in the front blocking constantly to avoid a possible lucky hit, while the ranged characters snipe any special that could ruin things.

The achievement may not pop until you've finished the entire mission and you're in the post-game lobby, so if you're confident you didn't take damage just be patient.

Ironbreaker

The Cursed Rune: Take no team damage during the Quarry event

Ironbreaker
2 guidesOnline/OfflineSingle PlayerCooperative

Chain of Fire

The final mission in this DLC isn't too tricky and is pretty quick. You'll start off heading through a snowy landscape of canyons and ravines, with some assorted loot off the main path if you want to look for it. Head through an icy tunnel to reach Ungor Wyr; you'll have to drop down some cliffs to reach Ald Urbaz, a dwarven settlement with supplies scattered about. You'll have to proceed to a switch to lower the drawbridge, and from here you'll need to hold out against reinforcements. Stay close to the switch as you'll need to unjam it on occasion. Proceed across the bridge (this area is often where I got a rat ogre attack), up to the right, and then down an incline and up some winding stairs. You'll see the final event stage in the distance.

Fill up on supplies and head up to the beacon. There's a big pressure plate here you'll need to step on to light the beacon, and there's an achievement related to staying on this pressure plate the entire lighting sequence. If you have some human players this isn't too hard (since you only need to keep one player on the plate to keep the sequence going); doing it with AI is more challenging since you'll be the only one who will reliably stay on the plate. For the most part, you just need to be mindful of enemies that can push you out of the way (storm vermin, the pouncing attacks of gutter runners, getting grabbed by a packmaster, etc.) Of particular concern is the gas from a globadier, so make sure to prioritize them above all other specials.

Once the sequence is finished, a hole will open in the ground. You can drop down and then descend the mountain to the wagon to finish the mission. On completion you'll receive:

Beacon Of Hope

Complete: Chain of Fire

Beacon Of Hope
Online/OfflineSingle PlayerCooperativeMain Storyline

And if the beacon lighting sequence was uninterrupted, you'll get:

Step Up To The Plate

Chain Of Fire: Complete the final event without stopping the ignition sequence

Step Up To The Plate
1 guideOnline/OfflineSingle PlayerCooperativeTime/Date

That's it for this DLC.

Stromdorf DLC

Welcome to the, Stromdorf DLC. There is a unique weapon for the captain, the Executioners' Sword, and obtaining it and using it will net you two achievements. You're at the mercy of Ranald's Bones RNG on this, so other than equipping the captain's trinket so his stuff shows up more often in the chance slots, there's nothing you can do besides repeatedly playing Stromdorf missions until you get it. Once you've gotten and equipped it, you'll get:

Heads Will Roll!

Equip an Executioner's Sword

Heads Will Roll!
1 guideOnline/OfflineSingle PlayerCooperativeCollectable

Then, just start up a mission with the sword equipped and make a charged attack, aiming for the head of some weak rat. If you decapitate them, you'll get:

Heading for Decapitation

Perform one decapitation with an Executioner's Sword

Heading for Decapitation
Online/OfflineSingle PlayerCooperativeCollectable

Now for the missions, which are pretty straightforward; only one achievement ties to a mission-specific action.

The Courier

2 Tomes / 1 Grimoire [Video guide courtesy 360GameTV]

This mission starts you off at the edge of some fields. You'll want to generally follow the path, heading over some hills and then through a gorge, up and around to the Signal Tower. From there, you'll want to ascend the tower; be careful on the ladders as they are finicky and it's easy for rats to take potshots at you while you're stuck on one. When you reach the top, you'll find your dead courier (what a shocker!) and get a new objective. Drop down one level, pull the ladder, and then make your way down from the tower carefully, either taking the stairs or dropping if you fancy a more rapid if dangerous descent.

From here, you'll enter a foggy swamp; you can use the torches as guideposts, but you may find it easier to navigate and avoid getting overwhelmed by hugging a wall and following it around. You'll eventually come to a familiar location: the Garden of Morr—or a different chunk of it, anyhow. Hug the left side and you'll wrap around into the graveyard proper. Here, you'll need to ferry explosives to several locations. I recommend splitting into pairs to run the barrels if you want to save time, but it's safer to stay as a team. The first will require jumping down to the previous area and then looping around; the next barrel will blast open a tomb door into an embalming chamber. From here, you'll get a redux of "The Dungeons" for a brief bit as you'll need to navigate the area beyond by torchlight, but this is a blessedly brief and pretty linear sequence. You'll emerge on the other side by a river; just hoof it to the ferry and you're done. Once you've completed the mission, you'll net:

Thunderwater Ale

Complete Reaching Out mission

Thunderwater Ale
Online/OfflineSingle PlayerCooperativeMain Storyline

Reaching Out

3 Tomes / 1 Grimoire [Video guide courtesy 360GameTV]

The mission starts you off on the edge of Stormdorf; you'll need to leapfrog some fields and follow the road to the main gate. Entering the Reikland gate, you're very often get an ogre here, which can prove a problem in the tight quarters. After he's done, you'll need to loop around towards a mechanism to open the path forward; there are supplies and tomes around and above you. The next section is narrow street fighting, with multiple paths to the tannery.

Inside the tannery you'll run into a few stray enemies and a lot of supplies; stock up on as much as possible. When you're ready, drop down the ladder and check out the document on the table to trigger a boss fight.

The boss is pretty straightforward and follows the usual video game boss rules. Once you've fought him once or twice, he's pretty easy to fight; the toughest part of this encounter is actually getting the "Krench" achievement. Krench has several basic attacks, including a charge, an overhead strike, and a charged area of effect attack. Strafe to avoid the first two, just back off to avoid the last. After you've dealt a significant amount of damage; he'll retreat and become immune to damage while summoning new enemies; dispatch them as fast as possible, as they're the biggest potential threat. Rinse and repeat this and he'll fall no problem.

To get the "Krench" achievement, you have to specifically dodge several of the boss's overhead attacks. This can be a bit tricky, especially if you're playing with computers, because the boss needs to have his attention on you and you need to be in the right distance to provoke the right attack. I found the best option was playing on Normal or Hard, and deliberately "de-quipping" my other heroes with weak weapons; this keeps the boss alive long enough for you to spend your time kiting him for the achievement. Getting one or two of the heroes killed beforehand so the boss has fewer targets also helps. Equipping Seal of the Scout to your trinket slot gives you unlimited dodges and will help in keeping you alive and moving. If you're doing this with a team, it's much easier; just take turns backing off and letting a single player dance with the boss until they get enough dodges, with the other players keeping any other rats off their back. Then repeat for each person. You'll know you've gotten it once the achievement pops:

Krench

Dodge the overhead attack of the boss three times in a session

Krench
1 guideOnline/OfflineSingle PlayerCooperative

After the boss is dead, you'll get a swarm of enemy rats to deal with, but it shouldn't be too much trouble. Head through the newly-opened door and run down the lane to find your wagon and mission end.

Completing the mission nets you:

The Parley

Complete The Courier mission

The Parley
Online/OfflineSingle PlayerCooperativeMain Storyline

Assuming you got the above achievements, that's it for Stormdorf.

Death on the Reik

The final DLC "Death on the Reik" comes with eight achievements to round out the game.

Like with the other DLC packs, there's a special dagger weapon unique to this DLC for the Witch. Whether you get it first try or after a dozen tries is entirely random, and I recommend worrying about it last. Once you get the dagger and equip it, you'll unlock:

Blades of Aqshy

Acquire a Ceremonial Dagger

Blades of Aqshy
1 guideOnline/OfflineSingle PlayerCooperativeCollectable

From then, just load up any mission and hack at enemies with a strong attack, lighting them on fire. Once you've burned enough, you'll be granted:

Cauteriser

Burn 100 enemies using a Ceremonial Dagger

Cauteriser
1 guideOnline/OfflineSingle PlayerCooperativeCollectableCumulative +

Anyhow, on to the missions.

Reikwald Forest

This is a pretty straightforward mission, although it can be difficult in that enemies will pore in from everywhere and in many of the forest locations, it can be tough to adequately cut off angles of attack. Start off by taking your chosen path through the forest canyons. You're very likely to get a rat ogre here, or in the next area, so be prepared. Either way, you'll drop down into a glade, and then have to fight along the edge of a cliff along a plank path.

Reiskmund Fort is your next objective; the game wants you to climb up the platform and then drop down into the fort, but if you instead hang a left you can actually clip through the geometry and pop in, saving you some time. Book it to the blocked path and hack it down. Keeping moving and using bombs to clear your way will save you a lot of grief, because the hordes are immense. Push through and you'll cross a bridge and reach a good place to deal with stragglers.

After emerging from the cave, you'll be back in the forest. You'll need to descend a series of cliffs to the town—make sure you all jump at the same time, so a random special Skaven can't pick off whoever remains and you can't help.

In town, directly ahead of you will be a dam you need to blow up. Head right and smash down the barricades to enter a courtyard. Here, the barrel will randomly spawn in one of several locations. If you're lucky, it will be close to your position; if you're not, it will be all the way behind several walls and doors. The goal should be to have two players crowd-control the path forward against the onslaught of hordes, while another player guards the runner; if the runner has speed trinkets and potions, they can always try to just rush it while everyone else is knocking enemies out of the way, but it can be tough to get an easy opening. Similarly, if you're doing this solo the order of the day is slowly pushing the barrel forward rather than risking it exploding on a long carry. A rat ogre will spawn after you've cleared out the first few waves.

Once you've gotten the barrel to the wall and blown up the path forward, all that remains is a short trek over to the boat. If you have speed potions, you can skip most of the encounters around here. Step on the boat and you're rewarded with the following:

Reikwald Romp

Complete Reikwald Forest

Reikwald Romp
Online/OfflineSingle PlayerCooperativeMain Storyline

Nightmare Achievement: 'Reikwald Rush'

If you're curious, there are ways to break out of the map and cheese this achievement, like with the quarry event. However with a communicative team this isn't so bad. The usual advice of speed trinkets and potion shares apply, as well as item duplication (for more potions, healing, and bombs) and the grenadier trinket (for dropping bombs on your team.) If you aren't able to clear the ogre and opening area leading up to the fort quickly, just restart the mission. You're going to get mobbed by enemies in the fort, so have shield characters bash a path forward and keep moving, dropping bombs to clear out enemies and give you breathing room to keep moving forward; if you have to deal with strays, do so at the bridge.

The final bit of the mission ends up coming down to luck. If you're fortunate, the barrel will spawn somewhere close so that you can pop a speed potion, grab it, and quickly run it to the drop zone. If you do it fast enough, the rat ogre will not spawn at all. So then all you have to do is pop whatever speed potions you have left to make a dash for the boat. Don't fight unnecessary enemies and if someone falls behind, leave them.

Reikwald Rush

Finish Reikwald Forest in X min or less on Nightmare

Reikwald Rush
2 guidesOnline/OfflineSingle PlayerCooperativeDifficulty SpecificTime/Date

River Reik

This mission is interesting in that it comes with two specific achievements related to secrets hidden on the map. The first comes from unlocking a chest. To do so, you'll need a key. When you reach the beach, head right instead of left along the mission path to find it.

drag waters achievement guide

drag waters achievement guide 2

Then proceed through the mission until you reach the river ford with the overturned rowboats. Look to the left of the shallows:

drag waters achievement guide 3

At the left edge will be a sunken chest you can open.

drag waters achievement guide 4

This will grant you:

Drag The Waters

Find the first secret on River Reik

Drag The Waters
1 guideOnline/OfflineSingle PlayerCooperativeCollectable

The second achievement is a bit further on. For now, continue along the river path. At the camp site, the camp and nearby boat will contain loot to grab before heading up the hill and towards the clay pit and the cave beyond. After a few twisting passages and dead-ends you'll need to navigate, you'll exit the cave on a ledge with a marsh below you and your objective, the ship, in the distance. Grab the loot on the edge of this ledge to the left before dropping down.

Here in the fen your visibility will be rapidly obscured by fog, but you can orient yourself by looking for the lantern directly across from you. Rather than cutting across the fog and getting easily waylaid, hug the left side. About halfway around the bowl, you'll find a series of gnarled tree roots that have a glowing thing behind it.

secret location 1

Slash at it to break it, then continue on to the hovel. Facing the hovel, head to the right to reach the slope down to the river bank. Keep right, and you'll see another glowing crystal.

secret location 2

Hack it and then head back to the hovel. In here is a lot of loot; you're going to want to head upstairs and use the hole in the roof to drop down. Turn to the right and in the wall next to the house you'll see the third crystal:

secret location 3

With that done, cross back over and re-enter the house. If you shattered all the crystals, the cellar door will be open, and you can head down to find a secret temple. Grab the grimoire here and you'll get the achievement:

Cellar Dweller

Find the second secret on River Reik

Cellar Dweller
1 guideOnline/OfflineSingle PlayerCooperativeCollectable

Loot the house and proceed to the riverbank, where you'll find some resistance and then some loot right before you get onto the ship. Be quick here, as rat gunners often spawn on the shore. To get underway, just use the anchor chain towards the fore.

What follows is a long sequence of sailing down the river. The main features are that rat ships will latch onto you on one or both sides of the ship, staying there until you chop the chains. Using potions to speed up removing the chains and thus rat reinforcements is critical to completing this. After a few rounds of this, another ship will latch, and the objective changes: you must ferry some explosives onto the enemy ship. Don't try and take more than two barrels or so at a time and move as a group. Blowing up the ship will continue the event, and you'll eventually reach a spot where you stop. Storm the beach and clear it with rats to reach the other ship; loot the quest item you need out of here, and then follow the directions. Once you're back on the boat, the mission ends, and on your first completion you'll get:

Barge At Large

Complete River Reik

Barge At Large
Online/OfflineSingle PlayerCooperativeMain Storyline

Nightmare Achievement: 'Riverwarden'

This achievement requires you to take no damage during the boat event, defined as when you set sail on the ship to when it stops near the very end of this mission. It is a lot harder than it needs to be if everyone tries to take no damage at the same time, so take turns. What ended up working very well for my achievement team was focusing on getting the achievement for just two characters at a time. Those characters should be play the dwarf and captain, equipped with high-level gear that has, at minimum, both improved pommel and devastating blow. Once you board the ship and you've hit the chain anchor, starting the sequence, the job of the tank characters is to never let go of the block button if you don't have to. If you do some shield strikes and get fancy you can thin out the hordes faster, but you're opening yourself up to damage and possibly making this take a lot longer and be harder than you need. Each tank should position themselves by the boat ramps on each side. When enemies spawn in, bashing them back will help clear the deck and knock a lot of rats into the water. If you pace your bashes, the tanks should be able to keep doing this indefinitely unless some stormvermin get in some lucky strikes. During the opening phases, the only time one of the tanks should move is to support allies on the other side when there's no boat on their side, but remember that you'll get times when they attack from both sides.

dawnrunner event guide

The two remaining characters, meanwhile, must deal with the rats that get on the deck, slice the chains, and ferry the explosives in the final act of this sequence. It should be obvious, but the witch is not a good pick for this mission as most of her weapons increase the chance of dealing friendly fire. Heavy-hitting weapons and potion shares are really important; with certain weapons you should be able to one or two-shot the boat chains, which will almost instantly remove half of the enemy spawns and make taking care of the other side's chains much easier. Taking a bit of damage to get rid of the boat chains faster is a fair trade; during the lull the no-damage characters can pass off any potions, bombs, or healing items to the other two.

Finally, there's the end sequence with the barrels. First, target the chains of the other vessel, and then have everyone fall back to the boat's bow by the chain. You're now going to face a never-ending swarm of enemies. Your goal is not to wipe them all out, but instead kill the stormvermin and thin out their ranks (somewhere around 6–10 weaker enemies left), allowing the entire team to move as a group to the back of the boat, with the tanks bashing any enemies out of the way. Then, you grab the barrels, and get them into place. If you have bomb trinkets, they are very useful for clearing out the mob rushes faster because you can use them freely right on your allies without damage (and that way you also avoid lighting the explosive barrels by throwing it further.)

Take this section slow: you can't get all three barrels in one go (you only have two non-shielding characters, after all) so play it safe, throw a barrel or two into position, and get the hell back to the front of the boat when the next wave of reinforcements spawn in. Target the stormvermin again and rinse and repeat. After a very long delay, the boat will explode when all three are placed in position, and you'll continue on the river ride.

The achievement will pop for the characters that took no damage as soon as they step on shore; there are often specials spawning here so make sure the tanks are as recommended still blocking. Finish up the mission for some XP, and then switch characters so the other two party members can take no damage.

Riverwarden

Survive the boat event without taking damage on Nightmare

Riverwarden
2 guidesOnline/OfflineSingle PlayerCooperativeDifficulty Specific

With the DLC done, that's this game complete! Congratulations on your hard-earned gamerscore.

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