Rust: A Guide For Beginners Who Have No Idea How To Survive

Rust is a survival game that also includes a PVP aspect, which can make it very difficult for beginners to understand. You are thrown into a map with little explanation as to why you are there, what you are supposed to do, and how to survive. It can become increasingly frustrating as you die and lose all of your belongings over and over again.

Fortunately, there are a few tips that can make your first day in Rust a little easier as it takes the guesswork out of the game. Beginners shouldn’t have to rage quit after five minutes of play and they won’t have to once they gain a basic understanding of how to survive!

Choose A Server

The first step is to choose a server, and there are so many to choose from. You should try to choose a monthly server with a softcore mode and a vanilla tag. The softcore mode makes it so that you respawn in a safe zone and half of your items can be reclaimed upon death.

You should note that servers wipe usually on the first Thursday of every month, so keep this in mind when you start playing. It can be disappointing to come back to a server to find out that all of your hard work has been wiped clean, but you can always make your own if you’re not satisfied with this.

It is also a good idea to choose a server with a low number of players, as this will make it easier for you to learn how to play. You can even hop into a PVE server for an easier time, but it does detract from the main idea of the game in doing so.

Basic Controls

You will wake up in the map with no explanation as to what the controls are or how to play. It is important to know them so you are not stuck figuring out while an opponent sneaks up behind you for the kill. Players also have the option to reassign keys as they see fit if they prefer different bindings to those that are set.

The commands you should know are as follows:

  • Movement: WASD (Hold Shift for Sprint)
  • Use Equipped Item: Right Mouse Click
  • Jump: Spacebar
  • Crouch: Hold Ctrl
  • Head Look: Alt + Move Mouse
  • Inventory: Tab
  • Open Crafting Menu: Q
  • Hotbar Items: Numbers 1-6
  • Hotbar Item Switch: Mouse Scroll Wheel
  • Interact: E (Hold to Open Menu Wheel)
  • Rotate Building Piece: R
  • Text Chat: T or Enter
  • Voice Chat: Hold V
  • Reload: R
  • Open Map: Hold G
  • Fire Weapon: Left Mouse Click
  • Toggle Flashlight: F
  • Toggle Laser: G

Begin By Harvesting Wood And Stone

When you spawn in you are given a torch and stone, which doesn’t leave you with much. You want to start by using your stone to harvest wood and other stone and make sure to hit the red ‘x’ on trees or the gold mark on stones for extra resources. The most difficult part about this is that there are several types of stone scattered across the map.

The ones you are looking for are gray and they can be hard to find when every other player on the map is also in search of this resource. These two resources are what you need in order to make all of your basic materials.

While farming resources are great, make sure not to stockpile too many as other players can come along, kill you, then take them all off your corpse. If you happen to be traveling down the road, check the barrels as well since they often hold resources, specialty materials, and items.

Keep An Eye Out For Food

Hunger will creep up on you faster than you might think, so it’s important to keep an eye out for food to eat as death by starvation is a beginner mistake. There are both animals and plants you can eat, but you should look for chickens as they are easy to kill. The other animals in the game may end up killing you instead, so it is best to avoid them.

You can also forage for food by either taking a trip into the forest and interacting with the plants on the ground or finding crates and boxes along the road.

The types of forageable foods in the game include:

  • Berries
  • Cactus Flesh
  • Corn
  • Mushrooms
  • Pumpkins
  • Potatoes

Start Crafting

Once you have gathered enough useful resources and don’t think you will starve to death then you can begin crafting. This is an integral part of your survival as it will provide you with a safe place to spawn, better harvesting materials and weapons, and somewhere to keep extra supplies.


First, you need to make yourself a few tools that will make it easier to obtain stone and wood. You need to craft yourself a Stone Pickaxe and a Stone Hatchet, as they will allow you to gather twice as many resources with each swing.

Simple Base

You should start building a base as soon as possible, and it doesn’t have to be anything fancy. Basically, you want an enclosed building with a foundation, walls, ceiling (but use a floor piece instead), and door.

You can start with twigs, but you should look to upgrade as soon as possible to wood or stone as this material can be easily brought down by players. It’s also important to create locks as soon as possible.

Be mindful of where you choose to build your base, as you should aim to stay out of populated areas, as well as the desert and snow climates. The forest is the best spot as it provides you with resources and the trees offer cover to hide your base from opponents.

Sleeping Bag

Once your base is built, you then want to find cloth to make a Sleeping Bag, as this will serve as a respawn point. You can easily acquire this material by harvesting hemp fiber plants.

Storage Box

Once you have a base you can craft a few Storage Boxes where you can store extra items, such as amazing weapons. It allows you to farm and then return to your base to stash them away, so you don’t lose all of your resources if you happen to die.

Tool Cupboard

The Tool Cupboard has several uses as it prevents your base from decaying and stops anyone from building their base around you. Once it is placed, players will be unable to build within a certain radius. You can also put resources inside of this as it will stop your base from decaying as it uses resources for its upkeep.

Don’t Trust Anyone

It can seem fun to jump in and make some new friends, but chances are that any other randoms you meet will probably just kill you. You might only have a torch and a rock, but it doesn’t matter. Players are known for stripping their inventory and approaching other bases in an effort to scout their base in preparation for a raid.

You should also be wary at night and try not to light a torch or a campfire, as these can attract unwanted attention from the passerby.

Next: Rust Console Version Receives Mature Rating

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Rebecca O’Neill is a reader and writer based in Ohio, near the heart of the CLE. She enjoys playing a wide variety of video games and spending time with her husband and son when she’s not writing.

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