The Crypt is the first dungeon you will likely tackle as a new player. It is located at the graveyard, South of Safehold.
While the Crypt is the starter dungeon, it can be quite challenging for a new player, since it hosts rats, cave bugs, wolves, goblins and bears.
To stand a reasonable chance against these monsters, prep is important. So before you dive in, here are some things you need to know:
Weapons and armour
As a new player you start out with a 10QL longsword and shield. While this will give you a fighting chance, it won't do in the long-term. Before going into the Crypt, we'd encourage you to create or buy new weapons and armour.
Take your time to gain skill and upgrade your gear. If you're still living in Safehold, its iron vein will allow you to make at least 30QL weapons and chain. If (studded) leather armour is more your thing, you can find plenty of horses roaming the steppes north and south of Safehold.
Keep in mind that armour slows you down. While leather armour is very light, it doesn't offer a lot of protection. Then again plate offers a huge defence but will make it hard to escape if your quest takes a bad turn. For a beginner, studded leather armour when unmounted is probably the best choice.
Depending on your choices, a certain combat stance might be better than another. Up to you to determine what works best for your fighting style.
Training and preparation
You will save yourself a lot of frustration by going to the Combat Academy near Safehold and training both your fighting skill and your chosen weapon to 20. Keep in mind that weapons take damage from combat and training. Because of this it's encouraged to create a low QL training weapon to use on the practice dolls.
Shield skill can only be trained through combat. However unequipping your weapon will make sure combat lasts a lot longer. Just make sure you're able to escape once you get hurt, and start with opponents like chickens, roosters or dogs.
When you are hurt you have a few options to heal your body. Wounds can be bandaged with cotton, this will immediately take off a few points of damage. If you're suffering from a bad wound, you need to apply a healing cover to heal it. Lastly there's Farmer's Salve which can be applied on bruises and poisoned wounds.
Luckily it's easy to find cotton and the ingredients for covers and the salve by foraging. Many ingredients for covers can also be found by butchering animals.
If you don't have a butchering knife already, head to the Safehold Mine and gather some iron. Craft yourself a shiny new knife, and make a lantern while you're at it. Tar can serve as fuel for both the forge and your lantern, you can find a patch of it just North out of Safehold.
Running the dungeon
It's your big day and it's time for you to conquer the Crypt.
Remember that you're not allowed to take mounts or carts into the Crypt. It should be just you and your wit in there! So don't bother bringing dead weight like your saw, rake, fishing rod, carving knife, etc. They'll only slow you down. More importantly, bring plenty of cotton (15kg should do), and a few healing covers.
Head over to the Safehold Graveyard, and take the Western entrance. This area has seen a lot of death and suffering, which has permeated the area. When you get close to the Crypt you'll no doubt hear the blood curdling screams of the fallen.
Head to the cave entrance, fill your lantern with tar, light it with your flint and steel, and enter the cave.
You'll see Hunter Garth standing near the entrance. Activate any item, and talk to him to start your quest inside the crypt. The quest runs on a timer, but if you fail to complete it in time (or at all) you can always come back later and start over.
In front of you are dark hallways, and every few squares a small chamber with coffins and statues. Examine each statue you pass, and a monster will appear which you must defeat.
The very first statue will spawn a giant rat. Attack it, make sure you are not too close nor too far away, and use your shield bash if you are a shield bearer. Keep an eye on your health meter as well as your enemies, and if you see yours drop faster than his - get out.
Each monster you kill will award you some coin. Regardless if you decide to butcher the corpse or not, you need to bury it using your pickaxe. Rotting corpses attract all kinds of unwanted vermin, so play nice. If you decide to butcher but don't gather all the items, do make sure to bury all so nothing is left rotting on the floor.
You can exit and re-enter the crypt at your leisure. If you're encumbered by everything you're collecting, you can go back outside and unload items at your cart.
Heal your wounds as best as you can. After they are all bandaged (treated and bandaged if they are above a medium) wait for a healing tick until your health is as close to full as possible. Repair every bit of armor, weapons, pickaxe and butchering knife.
After you've done this, congratulations! You are ready to move on to the next chamber.
Your mission tracker will keep going up in % of completion as long as you don't skip any of the statues. The challenges rise in difficulty as you go along. At the end, after killing the last monster, there is a safe slide down to the entrance hall, and you are done and ready to start again if you wish! If you don't see the bar with the mission progress, turn it on through the HUD settings in the options menu.
If you're still finding the crypt too hard, I can offer two bits of advice. One is to kill whatever you can inside the crypt and repeat this until you have enough coin to upgrade some of your equipment. You can spend the time between quests improving your weapons and armour at Safehold, or create items to sell to the taskmasters West of Safehold. Should you get lucky and butcher a high (90+) QL pelt from a rat, there might be some people around willing to buy it.
Secondly, invite other people to join you on your mission. When you both talk to Garth each of your party members can examine the statues. While the bounty for each kill will be divided, you'll have much more opponents and a lesser chance of dying. Don't know anyone yet? Then this is the time to make new friends. Invite people in Freedom chat to join you.
A big thanks to Shay for the initial draft and many of the ideas in this guide.