I know there are a lot of guides out there saying what you should and should not do, but they can be really lengthy and I just don’t like reading pages worth of general gameplay material. The videos on youtube are good, but some of those guys are idiots and the informative ones are kinda boring. So, I’m just gonna make a list of some things that have always worked since alpha 4 (that’s when I started playing). If anyone has anything else to add please feel free. Just try not to make this a debate thread.
1. If you start in the industrial biome, GET OUT! There are loads more zombies there and they seem to spawn faster in that area. Also, dogs are hiding everywhere and the hornets are a pain to deal with. You can survive there, but it is such a chore.
2. Get to know the basic crafting recipes. It’ll save you a bunch of time.
3. Build a stone axe. You can survive along time with just that. It might be tough here and there, but you can do almost anything with it.
4. Contrary to popular belief, DO NOT loot and pick up everything. It will clutter you inventory and make it a pain to sort through early on, which you don’t want. Backpacks, napsacks, and any other types of those bags are fine since they will have better chance for food or weapons. What you really should be looking for at the start is an iron pipe. That is when you can get a forge going.
5. Wood is your best friend. It’s quick to craft with, very versatile, and plentiful. Yes, even in the desert. And you can upgrade wood frames and wood trunk tips with it.
6. Build a crossbow and some bolts. I left it down here because if your somewhat nimble with your character, then your stone axe is all you need at the beginning.
7. Pick up all types of food and water until you have enough to be picky. If you can make antibiotics, then rotten meat isn’t so bad. Food poisoning isn’t that bad either if you are clear of zombies. It only last 60 seconds and bottoms out your stamina and some of your hydration. It sounds worse than what it really is.
8. Zombies move slow during the day, so don’t try and hightail it away from them all of the time. You will waste your hydration level.
9. This one takes a little practice and courage. If you see a spitter zombieall you do is dodge the acid, then dash right past them. By the time they explode, you should be clear of the blast radius. You could also snipe it once in the head from a good distance and watch it run at you, but not quite make it which then it explodes. They do have good loot btw, but you don’t get it if they go boom.
10. If you’re in the desert, pick up the yucca plants. One empty jar and those plants can provide you all the nutrients you need to survive. You’ll need a lot for hunger, though.
11. Blueberry bushes in the snow biome is just as good as yucca juice, however, it helps your hunger more than you hydration.
12. When building a base or fortifying one you found, use wood trunk tips. You could make a bunch of noise inside to attract zombies, then just keep repairing the walls as they attack your place and kill themselves on the trunk tips.
13. This one is a little cheap. If you have nowhere to run to at night or you are too far away from shelter, you should find a lake to float in until daytime. Zombies can’t swim so they will be at the bottom. The spitters might be able to spit at you underwater, but I’m not sure about this. Unfortunately, hornets can attack you underwater.
14. Finally, use the stealth system. You could lure zombies away from your base. You could run around a corner and throw a pipe bomb in the opposite direction. You could even shoot a crossbow bolt at an object to lure the zombies to a more advantageous point. Be creative!
There’s loads more I could offer you, but I feel this should be enough to give someone a solid start. This game really is not that hard. I usually build a decent fort within the first day, then I finish it within the next two days. I also play without air drops, and I never seem to find a smg, beaker, chainsaw or auger. I always start a new character whenever I die or get bored with the map, so I have learned how to start up quick and survive for the long haul. Hehe, I usually only die when I blow myself up by accident. Anyway, good luck and I hope this was helpful.
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