How To Manage The Wind On a Raft
If the sails are facing the direction in line with the wind, your raft will move forward. The wind must be blowing behind the boat. You can see this on this boat compass icon on the right of your screen. In Valhiem how to use raft effectively with the wind, requires you to maneuver your raft so the wind icon is white and touching the yellow bar.
There is a horseshoe shaped bar around the back of the boat icon. This is the range of which the wind needs to be for the sails to be utilized.
The direction of the wind will influence the steering of the raft. A lot of the time the wind is not in range of the horseshoe icon, because the wind is blowing towards you in the direction you want to go. This will make you unable to use the raft unless you retract the sails to 0% and press W once to activate the rudder.
Either wait for the wind to change direction and blow within the range, use the rudder or try the ZIGZAG method below.
Wind direction can also be seen on the mini map as a white wind icon on the bottom left.
Valhiem How To Use Raft Upwind: ZIGZAG Method
The zigzag method is a good alternative for using the rudder when on a raft. To use this method on your raft, instead of moving directly towards your destination, use the rudder to steer and go diagonally. Continue turning until the wind is now in range of the horseshoe icon and pushing your sails, once it is in range, keep heading diagonally in that direction until you are nearing the shoreline.
Once you are nearing the shoreline, simply change to the opposite diagonal direction with the wind still in your favor and begin heading that way.
Do this until the wind changes and will blow from directly behind the boat, in this case you can use the raft normally and head directly at your destination.
How To Deal With Threats On a Raft
Keep in mind you cannot build structures on a raft which means you will have no cover from arrow shooting skeletons or draugr. If you raft is too near a shoreline you can be attacked by greydwarf rock throws. When using the raft you are immune to being capsized from heavy ocean waves. Although the raft can be stuck on rocks in shallow waters.
The sea serpent is a threat that is in the open oceans, you will know you are in an ocean by the text that comes up on your screen whenever you enter a new biome, because an ocean is counted as a separate biome.
When you enter the ocean biome, you are at risk of a sea serpent attacking your raft, they cannot attack you directly unless you are too close to the edge while using the raft.
Each bite that the sea serpent does to attack your raft will deal 60 damage, keep in mind the raft has only 300 durability and you can also encounter multiple sea serpents at once.
The sea serpents can also follow you all the way to the shore and will continue attacking you.
Much like all the boats, there is little cover, this means if you enter a plains biome which has death mosquitoes, you are at risk, they can 1 shot a lot of low armored players and attack you with speed. There is little audio queues that will notify you of their existence, so be careful, especially when you are steering the rudder.
In Valheim, how to use raft as a beginner can have quite a learning curve, but it is very easy to learn once you have a guide. I hope this guide was specifically helpful to learn how to use the raft in Valheim. Remember how to use each mechanic of the raft including: wind, rudder, ladder, sails, and hold fast. Also be careful of the many threats that can attack you while using a raft in Valheim.