Horizon Zero Dawn Tip Guide: How to Farm 10,000 Shards Per Hour
Shards are perhaps the most important resource in Horizon Zero Dawn. You trade with them, you make arrows with them, and you need them for just about all the other crafting you do. Without shards, you can't do much of anything.
No matter where you are in the game, you could always get more shards. Maybe you're eyeing that Nora Survivor Heavy Armor or that sweet Shadow Hunter Bow. Either way, you're gonna need a lot of shards to get there. And we know how to farm a whole LOT of shards.
How to Farm a Ton of Shards from Early to Late-game
It's possible to farm a decent amount of shards during the early game. But once you get to Meridian City, you can farm around 10,000 shards per hour using the methods we outline below.
Farming Shards in the Early Game
When you're just starting out -- i.e. before you get to Meridian City -- you can get some early game farm in by repeating the first hunter lodge trials.
Every time you start the Hunter Trial mission, a whole new herd of grazers will spawn. It should be pretty easy for you to stealth kill them all. Loot their bodies, then sell everything you pick up to the merchant who's right next to the trial giver.
Farming Shards in the Mid-to-Late Game
After you get to Meridian City, you can get yourself fully decked out with purple (very rare) weapons/armor in basically no time. Here's the step-by-step rundown:
- Buy the Shadow Sharpshot Bow
- Craft Harvester Arrows
- Return to the first hunting ground you run into (with the Watchers and Grazers).
- Choose the trial that requires you to shoot a certain number of Blaze Canisters off the backs of Grazers.
- Take the rope down, then stealth kill the entire herd with your spear.
- Once they're dead, go to each body and shoot off all 4 Blaze Canisters with the Harvester Arrow.
- Loot all bodies and pick up the canisters off the ground.
- Speak to the Trial Giver and restart the Trial.
- Rinse and repeat the kill/harvest cycle.
Why does this work? Because Harvester Arrows make each Blaze Canister you remove worth 6 Canisters instead of 1. So rather than dropping 4 Canisters, Grazers will drop 24. That's a huge difference!
Let's do the math. At 24 Canisters per Grazer, with about 8-10 Grazers in each herd, you're looking at about a 200 Canister haul per every five minute run. You can sell 50 Canisters for 200 shards, which means you're getting 800 shards in a run for those Canisters alone. Add on the Hearts and Lenses you can sell, and you're well on your way to hitting 10,000 shards once you've repeated the process a few times.
Want to make the farming go even faster?
Invest in stealth armor so that you can walk up to grazers and kill them as quickly as possible -- no need to whistle and lure them in, or throw rocks to get their attention.
You can also put Handling mods on your Sharpshot Bow so that the reload time between Harvester Arrow shots isn't so long. When you need to take out 4 Canisters per Grazer, shaving off a few seconds with a mod can really add up to saving a lot of time.
Once you've got all those shards, all that's left to do is decide what to do with them! Hopefully you've got your eye on a few rare pieces of gear -- or you can just craft infinite arrows instead.
That wraps up our guide for farming tons of shards in Horizon Zero Dawn. If you want more tips to help you survive the wilds, check out our other guides:
- Horizon Zero Dawn Beginner's Guide
- Horizon Zero Dawn: Complete Guide to Resources, Components, & Crafting
- Horizon Zero Dawn: Handling and Other Weapon Stats Explained
- Horizon Zero Dawn: Armor Stats and What They Mean
- How to Upgrade Your Spear in Horizon Zero Dawn
- Horizon Zero Dawn: How to Farm Purple (Very Rare) Mods