There are a total of 22 NPCs that can be acquired in Terraria, including 3 that can’t be housed. Each one of them plays an important role in your world whether it is selling items or healing the player after a long battle. Not all of them are easy to get and it can be confusing on how to get some of them.
SPOILER WARNING to anyone who has not played Terraria because this article has information that some people might not want to see. Other than that, each NPC has there own things that they do, and almost all of them require you to complete something or get an item in your world for them to spawn. If you are having trouble in Terraria, consider checking out this guide on Amazon here.
Once you finally complete a certain NPC accomplishment, you must build a house for each of them to live in or else they will not spawn. The house must be at least 6 blocks high and 10 blocks wide and must contain at least 1 torch, chair, and table. It must be closed off by a door, but once you have completed it, the NPC will spawn in it after a few minutes of waiting.
The Guide is the easiest NPC to spawn in your world because he is literally with you when you start a new world. He is there to give you tips and tricks, and to help you start on your long journey into the huge world of Terraria. He can also give you crafting recipes if you give him a specific material, so take advantage of that from the start so you know what to craft.
He is one of the most important NPCs in the game because, without him, you can’t get into hard mode. He has to be alive for you to spawn the Wall of Flesh in the Underworld, and once you beat him, hard mode starts in your world. Keep in mind that it becomes a lot harder than easy mode because all the enemies have more health and deal more damage.
The Guide uses a wooden bow to protect himself and has wooden arrows in easy mode. In hard mode, he uses a wooden bow with fire arrows to fend off the harder enemies. When starting a new world, sometimes it is best to stick close by your Guide so he can fend off the monsters that try to kill you.
Interesting Fact – If you find the Guide Voodoo Doll from the underworld and equip it, you will be able to kill him with a few hits of your sword.
The Merchant is usually the very first NPC that spawns in your world because of how easy it is to get him. The way you get him to spawn is if you have a total of 50 silver coins in all combined inventories of all players in a single world. Once you get the 50 silver coins and the house built, he will spawn during the day sometime.
He is a very important NPC because he sells all the basic items needed for survival at the beginning of the game. Some of the items include the Mining Helmet, Piggy Bank, Iron Anvil, Bug Net, Torch, Lesser Healing Potion, Lesser Mana Potion, Wooden Arrows, Shuriken, Rope, Marshmallow, Throwing Knife, and Glowstick.
When building houses for the NPCs, make sure you don’t allow the NPCs to walk outside because they run the risk of being killed by the mobs that roam the area.
Interesting Fact – The Merchant seems to be greedy, judging by various quotes, such as “Did you say gold? I’ll take that off of ya.”
The Nurse is one of those NPCs that you either use all the time or don’t use at all. In all the time I played through Terraria, I only used the Nurse a few times because there is always something better for you to use to heal yourself. The Nurse has the ability to heal you for a price of 75 copper coins per 100 health.
The way she defends herself is by throwing syringes at the enemies, but it does not do that much damage to the enemies. The way to make the Nurse spawn is to increase your health to more than 100 by finding at least 5 Heart Crystals underground and consuming them. Every Heart Crystal consumed increases the player’s health by 20 health points.
Interesting Fact – Some players might use the Nurse as a healing station when at low health during a boss fight by teleporting home with a nurse in it. It’s commonly used due to the cheap cost of healing back to full health. This could also be used with autopause to make it easier to heal up.
The Demolitionist is very important because he allows you to buy explosives from him to blow through harder material that a regular pickaxe can’t dig. The way to have him spawn is to put an explosive like a bomb into your inventory and then during the day, he will spawn in an empty house that is suitable housing for NPCs.
He only sells a few items but they are all important to dig through hard materials. The items include Grenade, Bomb, Dynamite, Hellfire Arrow, Land Mine, and Explosive Powder. Each item has their specific purpose. For example, a bomb and dynamite allow you to blow through Ebenstone blocks to get to Shadow orbs. Breaking 3 Shadow orbs spawn the Eater of Worlds.
Interesting Fact – The Demolitionist’s appearance seems to be based on dwarves from many games, films, and works of literature. He is significantly shorter than other NPCs and has a beard. Furthermore, his mining helmet, lantern, and the fact that he sells Explosives fit the trope of dwarves preferring underground environments. This is further proved in one of his quotes during a party.
This NPC is there to make your character look cool. The Dye Trader allows for you to change the color of your character’s clothes and equipable to whatever the dye is. The best way to get cool looking dye is to find these plants called Strange Looking Plants and give them to the Dye Trader. Once given to him, he will give 3 random dyes of the same name to the player each plant he receives.
The only way for a Dye Trader to move in is to have a dyed item in your inventory and have an empty suitable house for him to move into. He sells the Dye Vat Crafting Station which allows for the player to make his own dye for his clothing. If he dies by a mob, he has a 12.5% chance to drop an Exotic Scimitar, that is very good for a starter character.
Interesting Fact – Even if you are wearing the Dye Trader’s own attire, he still criticizes your clothes.
The Dryad is a very important NPC when it comes to your world and the plants in it. The way you get the Dryad to spawn in an empty house is to defeat a boss other than King Slime or the Wall of Flesh. Once the boss is defeated, she will spawn during the next day. It is important to keep her around all the other NPCs because she can heal them if they are taking damage.
She is also important because she sells items that will help make your world look better. Some of the items include powders, seeds, sunflowers, acorns, special costumes, planter boxes, and special plant walls. Another important thing is that she tells the player what percentage your world is when talking about Crimson/Corruption/Hallow.
Interesting Fact – An ancient race of Dryads once waged a large war with Cthulhu. Unable to defeat the beast, they crippled him by ripping out vital chunks of its body. However, only one Dryad remains, this being the NPC you obtain in-game.
The Tavernkeep is a fairly new NPC that was added to the game and is a very good addition to the already massive cast of NPCs put into the game. The only way to get him to spawn is if you beat the Brain of Cthulhu/Eater of Worlds, and once you do, you can find him laying basically anywhere around the world.
When he is threatened, he will throw mugs of Ale at enemies to defend himself from danger. Once he is in your world, you have the ability to buy anything from his massive shop of items. The only downside to the items he has is he uses Defender Medals instead of coins. The way to get Defender Medals is to buy the Eternia Crystal Stand and place it in a flat valley.
Once it is placed, buy an Eternia Crystal and place it on the stand. The Old One’s Army event will occur and every wave of enemies defeated will give you a Defender Medal. His shop is filled with all types of weapons and clothes that you can only get from completing the event. So make sure you have good enough weapons to make it through.
Interesting Fact – Approaching and standing near the Tavernkeep while holding Ale can cause him to appear to be holding his own mug of Ale. While he is actually holding Ale, the player can toast with him by continuing to hold Ale and walking towards him, which creates a subtle burst of particles when you bump glasses. This effect is purely aesthetic and has no functional effect.
The Arms Dealer is the best way to get gun ammo in the game. He is not hard to get at all either. The way to get him is to first have an empty suitable house, and then have a gun or gun ammo in your inventory. Once both criteria are met, he will spawn. The easiest way to get a gun early game is to go into the Crimson/Corruption and break one of the orbs. It has a chance to give you a musket.
The items he sells is a Flintlock Pistol, a Minishark, Musket Balls, Silver Bullets, Unholy Arrows, Stakes, Stynger Bolts, and special costumes. He also sells Illegal Gun Parts at night if you are willing to pay the gold. Keep in mind that you will need to have another gun in your inventory for him to respawn if he dies.
Interesting Fact – The Arms Dealer and Guide seem to argue with each other through Emotes, implying they don’t get along. This is further evidenced by his quote regarding the Guide Voodoo Doll. “I heard there is a doll that looks very similar to [Name of Guide] somewhere in the underworld. I’d like to put a few rounds in it.”
The Stylist is one of those NPCs that everyone gets just to have all the NPCs. She does not do much other than selling a bunch of hair dyes that, when equipped, can only be seen if you are not wearing a helmet. To be honest, most of the time during your playthrough, you will be wearing a helmet so you won’t even be able to see your hair color.
The way to get her to spawn is to go mining and find a spider cave. Once in the cave, you might find her tangled up in a spider web and you can get her out. Once you get her loose of the web, she will spawn in an empty house closest to her.
Interesting Fact – In the game files, the Stylist has separate “gore” images for her head and hair. This could suggest that the stylist is actually wearing a wig.
The Painter is the best option if you want to buy items to make your house look better. The only way to get him is to have at least 8 other NPCs in the world. It is fairly easy to get him because it does not require any work besides getting other NPCs. He also has a huge host of items that he sells to the player.
Keep in mind that the items he sells do change depending on the specific biome he is in. Some of the items he sells include a paintbrush, paint roller, paint scraper, all different colors of paint, many different paintings you can place on your walls, and tons of wallpaper choices.
Interesting Fact – The quote “I’m all out of titanium white, so don’t even ask.” is a direct reference to the American painter, art instructor, and television host Bob Ross.
The Angler is very different from all the other NPCs in the world because he does not sell anything. What he does is allows you to complete fishing quests for him, and once you do, he will give you a random reward. The rewards can be just straight-up gold, special costumes, and even better fishing equipment.
The way you get him to spawn is to go all the way to the ocean either left or right and wake him up as he is sleeping on the sand. When you wake him, you can talk to him. When you speak to him, he will give you a quest to complete. The more quests you complete, the better the items you will receive.
Interesting Fact – The Angler’s sprite is unique, as he is a child, and therefore younger than all the others. He is a block shorter than any of the others and is the only child NPC in the game.
The Goblin Tinkerer is probably in my opinion, the best NPC in the entire game. The only way to get him is to defeat the Goblin Army when they arrive. Once you have defeated them, you should go mining. It just happens randomly, but you will find him tied up underground in a random area. Once you untie him, he will spawn in the nearest empty house.
He sells the most important item for early to mid-game, and that item is the Rocket Boots, which allows flight for a short amount of time. He also sells a Tinkerer’s Workshop, a Ruler, a Grappling Hook, and even a Toolbelt. Everything he has is very important and you should try to get him as fast as you can to make everything easier for you.
Interesting Fact – He is the only goblin who doesn’t have pointy ears.
The Witch Doctor is an NPC vendor that will spawn after the defeat of the Queen Bee in the Jungle. Once she is defeated, he will spawn in the nearest empty house available. He is passive and won’t use anything to defend himself. He can easily be killed by an enemy so keep him in a safe place if you want him to stay alive.
Some of the items he sells include Imbuing Station, Blowgun, Cauldron, Tiki outfit, Tiki Totem, Pygmy Necklace, and all types of Fountains. As you progress into hard mode, his items will get better and better because you will need better stuff when going into harder difficulty.
Interesting Fact – The Witch Doctor is a Lihzahrd, as can be seen by his green skin and tail. This is especially evident by his party quote, “I wanted to see how your kind celebrate.”
The Clothier is an NPC that sells mostly vanity items and has the most unique way of having him to spawn. The first time you meet him he is actually named Old Man. He will tell you to come back at night to relieve him of his curse. If you go back at night he will give you an option to do so.
When you click the option, Skeletron will come out of him and try to kill you. Once he is defeated, the Clothier will spawn if there is an empty house available. He sells only clothing items and some of the items are worth the coins. When he is threatened, he will shoot fiery skulls just like the Book of Skulls you can get from Skeletron.
Interesting Fact – Equipping the Clothier Voodoo Doll allows a player to attack and kill him (similar to the Guide Voodoo Doll). Doing so at night re-summons Skeletron.
The mechanic is a very useful NPC when it comes to electronics and wiring. The only way to have her spawn is to defeat Skeletron and go into the dungeon. Once you go in, you can find her tied up randomly anywhere in the dungeon, and you can untie her. Once untied, she will spawn at the nearest empty house available.
The items she sells include a Wrench, Wire Cutter, Wire, Lever, Switch, Pressure Plate, Booster Track, Bulbs, Lenses, and Timers. All these things can make for some amazing creations like huge doors that open with a click of a button and even whole buildings disappearing with block wiring.
Interesting Fact – Her ability to throw her wrench like a boomerang to defend herself may be a reference to Ratchet from the Ratchet and Clank games, who can do the same move.
The Party Girl is an NPC that sells Festive items and special furniture. The way you get her to spawn is to have at least 14 different NPCs in your current world. You also need an empty house available for her to move in. When she is attacked by an enemy, she will defend herself with Happy Grenades, which explode and shoot confetti everywhere.
There are tons of items that she sells and all of them are just for the fun of getting. These items include a Party Center, Silly Balloon Machine, Lava Lamp, Rockets, Fireworks, Presents, Bubble Machine, Confetti Cannons, and many more party items to use. This NPC also puts on random parties and other NPCs sell different stuff during these occasions.
Interesting Fact – If you buy the Party Center from her, you can start a party whenever you want just by activating it.
The Wizard is the first hard mode NPC that you get after you beat the Wall of Flesh. He sells all magic items and will give you magic buffs as well. When an enemy tries to hurt him, he will hurl a large fireball at them to defend against their attack. The way you get him to spawn is by finding him in the cavern layer or lower all tied up. Once you release him from his ropes, he will spawn in the nearest available house.
The items he sells are the Ice Rod, Spell Tome, Music Box, Bell, Harp, Crystal Ball, Music Box, and Wizard Hat. Some of these items give you magic buffs, while others allow you to make a magic weapon from them. The Ice Rod is actually one of the most expensive items in the game running at 50 gold.
Interesting Fact – The Wizard may be slightly senile or have prosopagnosia as he confuses the player with NPCs of the same gender that have moved in.
The Tax Collector is an NPC that collects taxes from the other NPCs for you. He is probably the second hardest NPC to get because of what you have to do to get him. You need to buy some Purification Powder from the Dryad and then go down into the Underworld. Once all the way down, you have to find a very rare enemy called a Tortured Soul.
Once you find it, throw the Powder onto him and he will turn into the Tax Collector. It is altogether hard to do, but in the end, it will be worth it. If you have a total of 20 housed NPCs, it will take 4 in-game days to reach 10 gold.
Interesting Fact – The Tax Collector doesn’t celebrate parties, as he doesn’t say anything different, or even change his hat. This is almost certainly intentional, and possibly another reference to Ebenezer Scrooge, as they both don’t celebrate.
The Truffle is hands-down the hardest NPC to get because of all the steps needed to get him. First of all, you need to buy a Clentaminator from the Steampunker, and then have her spawn in a mushroom biome. You must then buy the Glowing solution from her and head to the jungle. Once you get there, use the Clentaminator to turn the surface of the jungle into a mushroom biome.
Once that is done, build a house, and finally, the Truffle will arrive. He will defend himself with little mushroom spores and is easily killed if you’re not careful. He is definitely worth the trouble because he sells the Autohammer which allows for you to make Shroomite Bars for a special armor.
Interesting Fact – He is the only NPC that requires a specific biome to live in.
The Pirate is another hard-mode NPC that only requires you to defeat an army. The only way to have him spawn is to defeat the Pirate Invasion. Once they are all defeated, then he will spawn in a vacant house as soon as the invasion is over. He has the same look as the Pirate Captain from the Invasion.
He sells a lot of Pirate items like a Cannon, Cannonball, Pirate outfit, Sail, Parrot Cracker, and Bunny Cannon. In the long-run, he is a very easy NPC to get and you will just get him by playing the game so I would not worry too much if you don’t have him.
Interesting Fact – Like the Steampunker, the pirate’s spawn requirements do not necessarily require the world to be in Hardmode, though you will need to have at least one other Hardmode world to get the necessary item to summon the pirate invasion.
The Steampunker is a hard-mode NPC and only spawns if the player has defeated at least one mechanical boss and there is an empty house for her to move into. She is actually a very important NPC to have because of all the items she sells to help the player.
The items she sells include Teleporter, Clentaminator, Steampunk outfit, Jetpack, Solidifier, Blend-O-Matic, all solutions, Cog, Steampunk Wings and Goggles, Static Hook, and Conveyor Belt. A bunch of these items will help in defeating harder bosses and taking you deeper into the main game.
Interesting Fact – The Steampunker occasionally talks about becoming an air pirate. Air pirates are a staple of the steampunk genre.
The Cyborg is a hard-mode NPC that only spawns when Plantera has been defeated in the current world and there is an empty house for him to move into. The way you find Plantera is after you defeat the 3 mechanical bosses, the Jungle will change and will start to spawn Plantera Bulbs. Once you find one, break it with your pickaxe and you can fight it.
He sells many different things like Proximity Mine Launcher, all different types of Rockets, Nanites, Portal Gun Station, and a Cyborg costume. His Rockets are worth it if you can find a Rocket Launcher somewhere in the world. He will also defend himself using his own rockets if he is threatened.
Interesting Fact – Along with the Traveling Merchant, the Cyborg is the only NPC that sells a post-Moon Lord item (the Portal Gun Station), making him the only town NPC to sell an end-game item.
Santa Claus is very unique because he only spawns if it is around the Christmas holiday in real-time. He sells Christmas decorations and vanities when he has finally moved in, but you must have an empty house to where he can actually move into.
He sells items like Christmas Trees, Lights, Star Topper, Bow Topper, Garlands, Bulbs, and a Santa costume. He sells 39 items at one time which is more than any other NPC sells besides the Tavernkeep. He also defends himself with baubles when threatened.
Interesting Fact – If you change the date on your device to be in-between December 15th-31st, then Santa Claus will spawn even if it is not that actual time.
The Traveling Merchant is one of the two NPCs that don’t need a house to spawn. What he does is at a random day, he spawns in your world selling random items that could be rare. He wanders around your spawn area just waiting for you to buy something off of him.
He only spawns during the day and de-spawns every night. He only has a 22.12% chance of spawning each day so that is roughly every 5 in-game days. He also defends himself with a revolver when threatened. He can sell anything from guns to equipables, and they can sometimes be very rare because the items are random whenever he is spawned.
Interesting Fact – Many of his wares may be a reference to the East India Company, and to the goods that were brought to Europe during the age of discovery in general.
The Skeleton Merchant is the second NPC that does not need a house to spawn in. He usually appears underground while you are mining and it is very random where he does. He is also the only NPC who does not have a map icon. He can spawn at any time of day because it is underground.
He does not sell that much stuff, but if you are into yoyos, then it is very good if you find him. He sells Counterweights, Spelunker Glowsticks, Yoyo Glove, many different Yoyos, and the Magic Lantern. He de-spawns off-screen so if you have the shop open, make sure you buy what you want before heading off.
Interesting Fact – The quote “Stay away from the spiders. They’ll suck out your insides and leave you a hollow shell of a man. Trust me on this one.” suggests the Skeleton Merchant was slain by a spider.
NPCs are probably the most helpful ways to get through Terraria because of all the things they do for you. Don’t worry if one of your NPCs die from an enemy because they will spawn right back just like nothing happened. Once you get the initial NPC, they will never go away forever unless it is the Traveling Merchant or the Skeleton Merchant.
Remember that Terraria is not an easy game for beginners so don’t worry if something is not working the way it should. When building your house, always take into account that an NPC might take over a room you don’t want them to. If they do, make another house for them and move them into it. There is always room for more stuff in your house.