Tiny Tina's Wonderlands official artwork and logo

Inspired by Borderlands 2's highly popular DLC Tiny Tina's Assault on Dragon Keep, Tiny Tina's Wonderlands is an explosively ridiculous homage to the RPG genre. And much like its predecessor, Wonderlands brings with it a whole bunch of stats, weapons, locations and tricky enemies to contend with.

So if you would like your first experience with Wonderlands to be a nice and pleasant one, allow me to give you some simple tips and advice to help you get started. Without further ado, here's the brief list:

Video version of this guide (~9 minutes)

1) Mind your stats

Wonderlands takes place within a Dungeons & Dragons inspired board game, and so your character's stats will resemble those from a classic D&D character sheet. However, while the names might be the same, their functionality is not.

For example, strength does not actually make you stronger when punching things in the face. Instead, it gives you additional critical hit damage for all weapons. Similarly, intelligence doesn't make you smarter or unlock new spell options, it only lets you cast them more often. So when you're building your character, don't neglect certain stats just because they don't sound like something your character would need - all of them are useful in their own right!

If you're curious what each of the stats even enhances, here's a brief rundown:

Strength - Critical hit damage
 Dexterity - Critical hit chance
 Intelligence - Spell cooldown rate
 Wisdom - Status effect damage
 Consitution - Maximum health and ward
 Atunement - Action skill cooldown rate

Tiny Tina's Wonderlands screenshot of the character creation stats

Don't worry too much about the specifics, all stats are good.

2) Your voice matters

Even though it's a small part of the character creation process, the voice you pick is incredibly important because you'll be hearing it almost constantly throughout your adventure. So resist the temptation to choose something ridiculously low pitched and squeaky, because your ears will not appreciate the joke after twenty hours of pure madness. 

3) Sort treasure from trash

All throughout the campaign Wonderlands will bombard you with mountains upon mountains of new items. Since each of them operates in a different way, features unique casting or firing patterns, or simply explodes in your hands, figuring out just what the item's stats are trying to tell you can be quite tricky.

So if you need to quickly suss out whether a weapon might be the fabled destroyer of worlds or simply a worthless pile of garbage for your current situation, focus on its item level and rarity. An Uncommon level 100 weapon will almost certainly be more powerful than a level 50 Rare, while a level 90 Epic with an entire novel's worth of description text will likely best them all.

Naturally, there will be edge cases where equipping the weapon and giving it a trial by fire will be the only way to know if it's actually good, but for the vast majority a simple look at the item level and rarity will be more than enough.

Tiny Tina's Wonderlands screenshot of a legendary item

If it has an entire wall of text, it's almost definitely better than similar items.

4) Don't be a pack rat

When I said Wonderlands bombards you with items, I really wasn't joking. If you end up looting literally every meaningless bit of gear that falls on the floor you're going to end up with a full inventory and won't be able to pick anything else up. So if you then run into a potentially awesome item, you'll have to go through the slow and annoying process of manually discarding something from your inventory in order to pick it up.

The solution to this problem, and one that hurts my inner pack rat, is to simply ignore the garbage items. You'll end up with more than enough gold by simply playing the game, so don't stress too much about leaving scores of gray items behind as they're just not worth the effort.

Also if you're worried this might mean you'll miss out on some super-duper ultra cool item hidden among the trash, there's no need to fret as Wonderlands has you covered! Simply head back to base, check the "Lost and Found" machine in the tavern, and you'll be able to loot everything of note that you've missed, up to a certain number of items. So as long as you check frequently, you'll be golden.

Tiny Tina's Wonderlands screenshot of the lost and found machine

This little device is a lifesaver!

5) Don't hoard gold like a dragon

Much like the rest of the series, gold in Wonderlands isn't all that important or hard to come by. As such, don't be afraid to spend it on fun new spells and weapons you find in vending machines, or even on the classic Borderlands style upgrades you'll be able to purchase back in town.

There's also not much point to saving your gold as both the amount you gain and the prices you have to pay increase rapidly as the campaign goes on. So unlike real life, just forget about the future and spend everything you have on a couple of fun toys for right now! 

Tiny Tina's Wonderlands screenshot of the upgrade menu

When in doubt, upgrade!

6) Magic is magnificent

Although you can play as a massive muscly manly man that goes around and hits things with a huge axe while grunting all the way, you should not ignore magic. There is a huge array of spells you can uncover throughout your adventure, and while many of them allow you to ignite or explode entire hordes of enemies, just as many offer powerful debuffs and boons.

So even if you just want to personally smash skeleton skulls all day long, I'd still recommend keeping your spells up to date. After all, bonking enemies over the head with a giant club is a whole lot easier when they're frozen solid and not actively trying to shoot you!

Tiny Tina's Wonderlands screenshot of magic usage

Magic is seriously awesome - give it a proper shot!

7) Stay moving, stay living

While Wonderlands is not quite as fast paced and hectic as something like Doom, it's still incredibly important to stay on the move. The vast majority of your enemies will attack you with either projectiles or melee attacks that come after a bit of a windup, and both of those are entirely possible to dodge.

So unless you're into roleplaying as a pincushion, my recommendation would be to constantly keep moving and weaving between cover. This way you're going to dodge a whole bunch of attacks without even being aware of them, as well as slowly herd enemies into neat little groups behind you, perfect for a fireball to finish them off!

Tiny Tina's Wonderlands screenshot of a fake dragon enemy

Don't try to face-tank a dragon. It'll end poorly for you, even if it's fake one.

8) Know your elements

A good chunk of weapons and spells you'll find throughout the world will come imbued with one of the five elements: Fire, Frost, Lightning, Poison, and Dark Magic. Each of the first four is strong against a certain type of enemy, while Dark Magic is essentially lifesteal and is thus always useful.

So if you ever find yourself in a situation where a tough enemy is practicing their floor sweeping routing with your face, make sure to equip a weapon that counters them in order to dish out some serious retribution. Here's what each of the elements counters:

 Fire burns away flesh (red health bars)
 Lightning zaps away wards (blue health bars)
 Poison pours through armor (yellow health bars)
 Frost chills bones (white health bars) to the bone, and eventually even freezes enemies which makes them take triple the amount of melee damage.

Tiny Tina's Wonderlands screenshot of the fire and lightning elements

There's an element for every occasion, so don't neglect to use them.

9) Sidequests are important

Quests in Wonderlands have a certain character level they're designed for, and while you can attempt to do them underleveled, the experience is not going to be all that great. Not only will you have to contend with enemies that are far more powerful than the usual rabble, but they will also take far too many crossbow bolts to the face to take down which just makes the combat a bit of a slog.

So if you find yourself underleveled, just go and do a sidequest or two. This will get you the levels and items you need to brawl with the more powerful enemies, and more importantly, it'll also give you a chance to explore some of Wonderlands' most ridiculous storylines!

Tiny Tina's Wonderlands screenshot of a skeleton horde

You never know what you'll run into, so give some of the sidequests a try.

Closing thoughts

There you have it, nine simple tips that will hopefully make your first run through Tiny Tina's Wonderlands a smooth and enjoyable one. And if I can give you one last bit of advice, it would be to optimize for fun rather than efficiency.

Wonderlands has a ton of awesome weapons and spells that do all sorts of crazy nonsense when used, so the best way to experience the game is to just embrace the madness and frequently swap between different loadouts. Doing this might not leave your character 101% optimal, but it'll certainly be a blast!

[Note]: My full review of Tiny Tina's Wonderlands is now complete as well, so if you're still not sure whether Wonderlands is the type of game you'd enjoy, give it a look.