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How to craft a campfire in ark

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How to craft a campfire in ark
October 25, 2018 Books 5 comments

Ark: Survival Evolved Xbox One/PC has interesting crafting options that I showcase and review how to craft spears, bow and arrows, axe, torches, and campfires and many more basic tools to survive in the dinosaur infested world! Make sure to SMACK the ‘LIKE’ button INSTANTLY!

Survival Ark Let’s Play Walkthrough Part 1:

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ARK: Survival Evolved has arrived on mobile, and we want to make sure you get the most out of your survival experience. The game doesn't tell you much, so this guide is designed to introduce you to the basics. You'll learn how to craft supplies, manage your meters, tame creatures and get Ancient Amber.


ARK: Survival Evolved gives players a singular task: survive. Once you die, all progress is lost from a previous save. The mode you choose to play determines the threats you'll face. When playing a solo game or online PvE, your main adversaries are the Dinos on the Island. If you're playing PvP, however, you'll also have to deal with the hostility of other players.

If you just want to know the basics of ARK, solo mode is the best place to start. For the purposes of this guide, that's what we'll be doing. The opening screens are pretty self-explanatory, but here are a few tips you should know.

  • You can use the various toggles to change the race, size and gender of your survivor. Other than hairstyles and clothing cosmetics in the later game, most of this stuff can't be changed. Design something you'll be OK with for the long haul.
  • Always select a spawn point by the southern beaches. There are very few threats there as long as you don't go out of your way to approach or attack other creatures.

Once you spawn on the breach, the first thing you want to do is start collecting resources. That means picking up stones by tapping them and tapping trees to get thatch and wood. The latter does a little damage to your health, so harvest some berries to eat later on to replenish your health.

Everything you collect goes into your personal inventory. To access it, tap the small backpack icon in the upper-left corner of the screen and tap the inventory tab to the right. It defaults to the crafting menu. Crafting begins with the Stone Pick, which you can make after you grab some wood, thatch and stone.

Once it's crafted, the Pick goes into your inventory. It can then be tapped and dragged to your Hot Bar in the corner of the menu. While you're there, drag some berries into your Hot Bar too. When you back out, you can access them by tapping their icon in the bottom right. Here are some tips for dealing with your needs early on. Your HUD on the bottom of the screen or the top-right will tell you when needs must be met.

  • Eat if you're hungry or low on health.
  • Find shade if you're too hot.
  • Go in the water if you're thirsty.


If you've made it this far, your character is probably ready to level up. You'll know that's the case when the arrow icon on your HUD starts blinking. So, enter your inventory and click the player silhouette icon. This screen shows your player's stats. Each time you level up, you can pick one stat to increase. The increases get smaller each time you level up. As a beginner, you should put most of your emphasis on Health, Weight and Speed. That allows you to take more damage, carry more resources and run away from threats.

Leveling also gives you access to Engram Points. These points give you blueprints to craft new things. The blueprints available to you correspond to your level. At this point, let's get started with a Campfire. Tap the icon and it will transition over to your Crafting tab. There, you can see a list of all the supplies you need to make each item. In this case, the Campfire requires thatch, flint, stone and wood. Get flint by hitting rocks with your pick.

Once you have the required supplies, you can craft the Campfire and place it by tapping its icon in your inventory. Drag and drop where you'd like to place it. If you make a mistake in positioning, you can always hit the arrow-like undo button in the top left of the screen.

Just like your survivor, certain structures and Dinos have inventories too. With the Campfire selected, you'll notice a similar backpack icon in the top left. Tap it. Drag a couple pieces of wood from your inventory over to the Campfire and press "light fire." At this point you'll level up again and get more Engram Points.

Craft a Stone Hatchet, just like you did the Campfire, and equip it. It functions similar to the Pick, but the two tools compliment each other.

  • The Pick harvests more thatch, flint and meat.
  • The Hatchet harvests more wood, stone and hide.

The main thing to know from here is that you get the fastest levels by going through that process of foraging and spending Engram Points to craft things. Some items to be aware of are the Bow at level 10, Tranquilizer Arrows at level 21, Mortar and Pestle at level 6 and your basic building foundations at levels 4 and 5.


As mentioned, levels 4 and 5 are your thatch building tiers. Once you're there and have all the Engrams unlocked, start collecting lots of thatch, fiber, wood and hide to build walls, foundations, roofs, doors and doorframes.

For a decent single-player starter hut, here's what you need:

  • Four foundations
  • 15 walls
  • One doorframe
  • One door
  • Four roofs

In order to craft multiple items at once, long tap the icon in the crafting menu and drag the slider to the number you want. After a few rounds of gathering, you'll eventually get what you need. The next step is to set up a location. For a starter hut, just place it on flat ground in a non-threatening area. Since you've been hanging out on the beach, that shouldn't be a problem.

The easiest way to build is to take all those items and place them in the Hot Bar for a little while. Exit the inventory and tap the foundation button to put your foundations down first. It works very similar to the Campfire we placed earlier. Tap once to set the basic location and then you'll have the option to rotate. Tap again when it's orientated the way you like.

The next step is to place your walls. Tap the icon and place them around the foundations. Make sure to leave room for the door and doorframe, because those essentially take up one wall section. With the amount of walls we've crafted, you should be able to build two levels and put the four roofs on top. It's all fairly simple because the building materials snap into place.

With the house fully constructed, the next step is to build a bed. To do this you must unlock the Hide Sleeping Bag Engram at level 4. Do that, and the option for Simple Bed will appear. When you make a Simple Bed, you can save your progress at any time in that location until the bed is destroyed. You may need some hide at this point, so craft some spears and hunt some Dodos on the beach. Remember to harvest hide with your Hatchet!

After that, you'll basically have all the comforts of home.


A huge part of the ARK experience is taming Dinos to make them a part of your squad. The mobile version of the game has over 80 Dinos, and they each have unique taming methods. Passive tames don't require combat, while active ones do. Because of that, active tames are generally much more difficult to pull off. With that in mind, we suggest a minimum level of 21 before going forward.

For starters, a classic ARK tame is the Triceratops, or Trike. You can ride them, and they work as your berry-hunting machines in the early game. In order to prepare for the hunt, you first need to craft the Trike Saddle at level 16. That allows you to ride it once you make the capture.

Afterward, you'll also need to collect lots of stone, spoiled meat (regular meat decayed with time) and Mejoberries to assist in making the Mortar and Pestle and Narcotics that can be unlocked at level 6. Once you're ready, place the Mortar in your base behind the door so it stays out of the way. In the inventory of the Mortar, you'll see the option to make Narcotics. That's why you needed spoiled meat and Mejoberries.

Narcotics in hand, the next thing you must craft is the Bow at level 10. You'll also be able to craft simple Stone arrows when you've unlocked it. At level 21, however, it's possible to make Tranquilizer Arrows that use the Narcotics you produce. These are key to knocking out large Dinos from a distance. It's possible to do this a little sooner, but by now you're totally prepared for a fight. The last thing to do before getting to that is to stock up on berries.

Find a Trike on the beach and look for a spot to approach it from high ground. Start shooting at it, and, if you're lucky, the Dino will just glitch out and start running into the wall. Since you've established distance and height, just shoot five or six arrows into the Trike and watch it go down.

At this point wait for a safe time to approach it and start filling its inventory with as many berries from your inventory as you possibly can. The tame timer goes up very slowly, so do something else while all of that's going on. Once it's done, the Trike is yours. Place the saddle on it and watch it harvest an insane amount of berries as you ride.


Ancient Amber is exclusive to the mobile version of ARK: Survival Evolved. It's the premium currency that allows you to cut back on the grind by offering limited XP boosts, single-use items and a quick path to building full structures. You can purchase it in packs with real money from the virtual store, but there are several randomized ways to get it in-game.

  • Harvest from Dinos
  • Find Amber Deposits
  • Get it randomly as a Free Gift by watching ads
  • Find it on the ground
  • Find inside special rocks

Because finding Ancient Amber is so random, there honestly isn't a good way to farm it in-game. That being said, it shouldn't become a necessary factor in single-player games at lower levels. It could be used as a way to pay for fast advantages in PvP, but not having Ancient Amber won't necessarily get in the way of enjoying yourself offline.

There's obviously a ton more to do in a complex game like ARK: Survival Evolved, but now you should understand what the main experience is all about. It's a bit intimidating at first, but the gameplay loop is pretty simple once you know what to do.

ARK: Survival Evolved is available now on PC, Xbox One, PS4, Android, iOS, OS X and Linux.

What are your thoughts on ARK for Android and iOS? Are you a fan of the survival grind? Tell us in the comments section!

To Cook Food & Meat In Atlas as, if you've not played ARK: Survival Evolved, Once your camp fire is built place all of your uncooked meat onto the Found a creature or animal in Atlas that you want to make your own?.

For being over a year into Early Access, still doesn’t do much to welcome new players. It’s a systems-heavy survival game that doesn’t teach or surface its most essential, basic skills in an obvious way, so without a holding hand new players tend to go the way of the Dodo Bird. But Ark can be worth the inscrutability. I mean, you can ride a damn T-Rex. I’ll punch every tree in the world if it means I get one of my own someday.

To get you on the same path, we’ve assembled a guide to the early game of Ark so you can skip the frustration and head right into brontosaurus husbandry.

Choosing a server and spawn point 

I enjoy the mystery of each dino island, but not so much the thick mystique of server browsers and game settings, which can make it tough to get a handle on Ark's basics.

If you’re brand new and just want to familiarize yourself with the systems: click Host / Local from the main menu for some safe solitude. Tweak some variables to make the process relaxing, if you like. Slide Dino Damage, Player Character Water Drain, and Player Character Food Drain down to zero, then slide XP Multiplier up to three. It’ll prevent wandering raptors from turning you into an easy dinner and give you ample time to learn to make food before starving from a lack of it.

If you want to experience Ark for the first time on even footing with other players: click Join Ark from the main menu to get to the server browser. For first timers, I recommend limiting your selection to the original Ark map, The Island, and joining a PvE environment so strangers don’t make your life miserable right off the bat. Official servers are a good place to start, so find one with a population and ping to taste and click Join.

After loading the map, a character creation screen will appear. Create a monster, save it as a preset if you like, and turn your attention to the Spawn Region at the right side of the screen. Later maps designate which areas are the most difficult to start in, but the original island leaves it up to the player to discover. To save you from spawning on top of a Titanoboa six times in a row, select one of the safe-ish South Zones and click Create New Survivor.

Picking berries 

You’ll spawn on or near a lovely tropical beach. Be sure to soak in the good vibes for a moment, then get to work. It’s time to play the most mundane part of Ark. There should be a some bushes where the sand meets grass, and rocks strewn all over the beach. Hold E on bushes and tap it while looking at rocks to harvest them for resources. Bushes will dole out berries, which are helpful in staving off early game hunger, and fiber, which you’ll need to make clothes later on. Stones are an important component in crafting tools, which we’ll get to once you level up.

To work towards that level up, keep doing what you’re doing, maybe punch a few trees to start collecting some thatch and wood too. 

Early tools and leveling up 

Tools expedite the process of collecting resources, so first we’ll make a stone pick, which requires one stone, one wood, and 10 thatch. Remember, stones are on the beach, thatch and wood in trees.

Once you have the required resources, open your menu (V) and click on Craftables. The stone pick recipe should be grey if you have the necessary resources. If so, double-click to craft it. The pick will appear under inventory items. Drag it down to your Quick Item Slots, which correspond the the number row on your keyboard. Close the menu, press the key tied to your pick and your character will equip it.

Use it on trees and stones to gather thatch and flint in abundance, and wood and stone in smaller amounts.

Eventually, you’ll get a notification that you leveled up. Hit V to bring up the inventory and character menu, and turn your attention to the stats at the right portion of the screen. You’ll get a single point to pour into one of 11 stats. Don’t worry too much about what they all mean yet and throw that point into your health. Chances are that a mean creature will come around soon enough to test it out.

Next, you’ll get 10 Engram Points to spend on learning crafting recipes. Pick the campfire, stone hatchet, and spear.

Build order for these doesn’t matter too much, but the stone hatchet is a handy one to get sooner than later. It operates as the inverse of the stone pick, gathering more stone and wood than flint and thatch. The sooner you have the hatchet and pick, the easier it’ll be to pile up resources.

Campfires and cooking

By now, it’s likely you’re getting hungry. Ark isn’t subtle with its warnings, flashing status updates in a big garish font across the top of the screen. If you don’t want to wait around for Print Shop ‘97 Word Art omens, pay attention to the icons at the bottom right of the screen. Food is represented by the juicy cut with the bone sticking out. Food. Let it deplete and you’ll starve, which means your health will slowly drain until you eat again.

It’s likely you’ve been collecting berries, so pop those like mad (with the exception of Narcoberries and Stimberries—eat a few to figure out what narcos do, just make sure ). They’ll stave off hunger, but won’t regenerate health. To really stay on top of your tummy, you’ll need some fat steaks. But first, you’ll need to terrorize some unfortunate birds.

There’s probably an abundance of peaceful animals on the beach, including the very unlucky Dodo Bird. Bottom of the Ark foodchain, Dodo birds are slow enough to chase, abundant enough to rely on, and provide a decent amount of hides and meat for the early game. It’s not your fault they're extinct—they're meant to die. Equip a spear and poke them until they forever sleep. Stop jabbing as soon as they’re dead and equip your stone pickaxe—it harvests more meat than hides and the hatchet does the opposite. Chip away at the corpse until it dissolves.

If you’ve yet to build a campfire, do so now, but be sure to place it somewhere safe and easy to locate. Look for a clear spot on the ground near a striking landmark before committing, but don’t dawdle too much—meat spoils after 10 minutes without refrigeration.

To cook your meat, look at your fire and hold E, then select Access Inventory. From here, you’ll need to place fuel—thatch or wood are usually abundant—and your raw meat in the campfire inventory, then click Light Fire. Give your meat a few seconds and it’ll appear as Cooked Meat in the fire inventory. Drag it back over to your Quick Item Slots for easy access and slam some of those steaks. Each restores 20 points of food and 8 points of health, far more than berries. 

Cooked Meat can still spoil after 20 minutes, so don’t sit on it too long. Chow down. Be sure to keep Dodos and other small, low level animals in your diet. Meat goes fast and so does your hunger meter. Besides, you’ll need the hides anyway.

Crafting clothes and a bed 

Clothes increase your armor level, which acts as an HP buffer, and increase protection from the cold and heat. They’re a must in the early game, and luckily, they won’t break the bank. A full set of cloth armor costs 145 fiber and 10 hides, and if you’ve been harvesting bushes and slaughtering dodos, it’s likely you can make them without much issue.

If you’re low on hides and set on meat, harvest dodo corpses with the hatchet. Be sure to ‘learn’ the recipes as you level up, craft each item, and then drag them from your inventory over to the corresponding slot under Your Equipped Items.

Looking good. Now let’s get you a place to sleep.

Hide sleeping bags are the earliest respawn and fast-travel items you can craft in Ark. They’re not exactly for, well, sleeping. When you die, you can choose to respawn wherever you placed a sleeping bag. You can also use them to fast travel between other sleeping bags or beds. Dream travel. Problem is, they disappear after a single respawn. It’s better than dying, losing your entire inventory, and respawning at a random location within the same zone. Ark’s maps are huge and finding old campsites isn’t easy.

Sleeping bags require 25 hides and 15 fiber, so they’re no small investment, especially for a consumable item. Some recommend going straight for the bed, which functions like the bag, but can be used infinitely. It takes 15 wood, 80 thatch, 30 fiber, and 40 hide—not cheap early on.

If you go for the bed, don’t place it on the beach. Venture deeper into the island and build that bed a home.

Moving inland and making a home 

Now that you have decent clothes, a full belly, and all the basic tools at your disposal, it’s time to start exploring the island. Moving inland means you’ll face threatening dinos, but it also means you’ll find more valuable resources. The beach life isn’t for everyone anyway. To protect yourself from the elements and the velociraptors, you’ll want to build a small hut.

So before moving inland, level up enough to secure the thatch doorframe, thatch foundation, thatch door, thatch roof, and thatch wall crafting recipies. Most require plenty of thatch, wood, and fiber to construct, so gather enough to build a few of each. Once you’re ready, make sure you’re doing well on food, craft another spear or two, and head out.

Don’t worry about going too far inland. (You’ll know if you’ve gone too far when a massive dinosaur swallows you whole.) Find a sheltered, cozy patch of land to build your home. Craft and equip the foundation, walls, door components, and roof, then lay them out as desired. Don’t go too big. This probably won’t be your permanent home, so a 4x4 will probably do. As long as you can fit a bed and storage box or two inside, you’ll be fine.

You’ll want to build a few storage boxes (25 wood, 20 thatch, 10 fiber) for hoarding resources. Gather as much as you can and dump it. It’ll come in handy sooner or later.

The journey ahead 

If you’ve made it this far, you’re probably set to explore the rest of what Ark has to offer on your own. Going forward, be sure to interact with other players. Joining tribes has a ton of benefits, and playing with real people can make Ark a much better experience.

Most importantly, don't worry about playing in any specific way. If you're frustrated by the early game grind and dinosaurs keep getting you down, look up some cheats and make yourself a god. Check out the hundreds of mods available in the Steam Marketplace. Join a server with accelerated XP and resource gathering—do what you want. Ark is a sandbox that you can explore and interact with in just about any way you like. 

But if you're enjoying the vanilla Ark experience, keep gathering resources, learning new engram recipes, and exploring the island. Slowly branch out into new parts of the island, building small bases along the way. Don't rush into anything blindly, as curious as you might be. Take your time to learn dino behaviors and resource utilities, and you'll be fine.

Once you have your feet under you, experiment with allocating stats into different traits, hunt a dangerous dino, and if you’re feeling especially adventurous, try to tame your own dino. Your inner five-year-old will be over the moon.

James Davenport

James is PC Gamer’s bad boy, staying up late to cover Fortnite while cooking up radical ideas for the weekly livestream. He can still kickflip and swears a lot. You’ll find him somewhere in the west growing mushrooms and playing Dark Souls.

ARK Survival Evolved: Engram - Campfire

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So, you’ve decided to take the leap. You’ve wormed your way into the Xbox One Preview program, you’ve dropped your entry fee, and you’ve even managed to find your way onto an ARK that will sustain your creative endeavors (difficult as that may be). Now, you just need to figure out a way to survive in this hostile paradise.

At the beginning, ARK: Survival Evolved is pretty merciless. There is absolutely no tutorial, so you’re forced to figure out not only the controls themselves, but the rules of the world itself. You need to figure out specifically what ARK wants of you. And that process begins with simple survival. Never fear, however, because we’re here to make sure you can stick it out, and actually make progress in this rough open world.

Before we even begin, let’s start here: if you’re an ARK virgin, spawn in the Easy section of the map. The game is very clear about which sections are most difficult, so you should pay attention. You’ll want to start in a temperate climate alongside plenty of friendly, stupid herbivores. That’s the southern part of the island. Start there.

Now, on to the basics!

The Controls

Just real quick. When we say there’s no tutorial, we really mean it, so here’s a basic button tutorial. First, the movement controls are basic FPS, so your left joystick moves your legs and the right joystick moves your neck. Beyond that, here are some basics for when you’re just starting out:

On Foot
  • ‘A’ is jump.
  • When you’re unarmed, pressing ‘Y’ performs basic functions like harvesting plants.
  • Push the left joystick to toggle sprinting.
  • Push the right joystick to toggle crouching.
  • The right trigger is your basic attack. If you’re unarmed, it’ll throw a punch, if you have a weapon, RT will swing it.
  • When you’re holding a melee weapon, the left trigger doesn’t do crap. When you’re holding a ranged weapon like a bow (or, later, a gun), LT sights the weapon for greater accuracy.
  • When you’re holding a spear (which will probably be your first ranged weapon), holding LT cocks back the spear and releasing LT will release the spear. 
  • Holding ‘B’ brings up a radial menu that allows you to control your tamed dinosaurs or use the standard array of MMO emotes. Also, you can poop on command.
The Inventory
  • Tapping ‘B’ opens your inventory. 
  • With the inventory open, swapping things around is as simple as pressing ‘A’ on the object you want to move and then ‘A’ again once you’ve picked a spot for it.
  • Your inventory screen is composed of five primary parts: 
    1. your actual inventory in the upper left
    2. your list of crafting items (just click the “craftables” button and your inventory will be replaced with your list of crafting options)
    3. your quick items slots (which are just hotkeys) in the bottom left
    4. your equipped gear in the top-right
    5. your general stats on the bottom-right

When Facing a Tamed Animal 
  • Tapping ‘X’ opens their inventory directly.
  • Tapping ‘Y’ opens their inventory, or jumps on the animal’s back if they have a saddle equipped.
  • Holding ‘Y’ brings up a radial menu of options which can be used to get the creature to follow you, change basic behaviors, etc.

This doesn’t cover everything, because ARK is a complex game, so make sure you’re experimenting with your button combinations and, as with any game, don’t be afraid to just randomly press buttons to see what happens. 

Quick side note: As you play through the first bits of the game, you’ll level up. It’s not necessarily important to worry too much about this at first (and it’ll be addressed by the end of this tutorial guide). If you get a notification that you’ve leveled up before we get there in the tutorial, ignore it … or just skip to the relevant section.

Now, on to the actual gameplay.

So You Just Woke Up Naked On An Island

I know you’re anxious to get to the dinos, but the first thing you need to do is survive. That means avoiding most other living creatures for a little while. Right away, you have two things to worry about: the fact that you’re naked, and the fact that you’re slowly starving.

In ARK, your hunger level and your thirst level are always falling (you can monitor their levels on the inventory screen). When you’re standing on a beach, you get cold. When you’re cold, your hunger and thirst levels begin to fall faster and when your food and water fall below a certain threshold (about 50 percent), they start to plummet. So, your top priority should be to get food, and then to worry about staying warm.

So, food first. Just walk up to the nearest plant and press ‘Y’. You should start harvesting fiber and berries, the latter of which you’ll need to eat for a bit. Rinse and repeat until you gather about 20 narcoberries. Since harvesting plants yields random berry drops, by the time you have about 20 narcoberries, you should have plenty of other varieties to snack on while you work on this next bit. 

If you played Minecraft, this next bit should make total sense: punch down a tree. Just like in Minecraft, punching trees yields basic resources you’ll need moving forward. Unlike in Minecraft, you’ll need to pace yourself, because hitting a tree takes down some of your health … you know, because you’re punching a tree. 

One note of caution: everything in ARK weighs something, and when you hit the weight limit of your personal inventory, you won’t be able to move. In other words, be careful about the amount of wood and stone you pick up at first, because they’re the heaviest items around early in the game.


Anyway, carefully punch down two trees. This should give you a little bit of thatch and wood to work with. If you haven’t already, you should also pick up a loose stone off the beach. Open your inventory (press ‘B’), then click the “Craftables” button on the top-left side of the inventory screen. Your list of known crafting recipes should pop up.

  • The things you have enough resources to craft will show up in white;
  • things you need to collect more resources to craft will show up in red.

If you’re curious what resources you need to build a specific item, just navigate to it and the lacking resources will pop up in red.

You’ll be starting off with two items you can craft: your stone pick and your torch. You should have everything you need to make your pick, so navigate to the pick, press ‘A’ to select it, and then select “Craft Item.” Once your pick is crafted, switch back to your inventory and equip it (it’s recommended that you assign it to a hotkey, because you’ll be using it a lot). Your pick can be used to cut down trees and chip away at rocks. When using your pick, trees will primarily yield thatch (your first real building material) and rocks will primarily yield flint.

Once your stone pick is built, find a big rock and starting hacking away until you’ve got some flint. Now, you should have everything you need to build your first torch. Do so now by repeating the process you went through to build your pick.

The torch can be used to generate a little bit of warmth which will help stabilize your hunger and thirst levels. 

Now, you may have noticed that the shelf life on your berries is pretty weak. When picked, most berries spoil in about 5-10 minutes when they’re in your inventory. However, when you transfer your berries to an animal, their shelf life is extended significantly. So, it’s time to cow the wilderness, to bring the denizens of this mysterious island under your thumb. 

In short, it’s time to smack a Dodo.

Your First Tame: The Dodo

Hopefully, you should still have 15-20 narcoberries in stock alongside at least 20-30 regular berries of any other variety. Once you have these items in stock, find a Dodo bird. If you spawned on the easier sides of the map, Dodos should be fairly plentiful near the beach.

You might need to run around a bit to find one, but when you do, walk up to the bird and punch it square in the face. Repeat that process until you’ve knocked the Dodo out. Do not hit the Dodo with a weapon or you’ll kill it; only use your fists.

When you’ve KO’d your bird, walk up to its prone body and press ‘X’ to enter the animal’s inventory. On the bottom-right corner of the unconscious animal’s inventory screen, you’ll see a stat called Torpor. In dictionary terms, torpor means, “a state of physical or mental inactivity.” In terms of ARK, “torpor” refers to whether an animal is unconscious or not. If an animal’s torpor is at zero, it’s awake; if the animal’s torpor is filled, it’s unconscious. 

When you’re trying to tame most animals, you’ll need to keep them unconscious while you’re feeding them whatever food it is they like. Narcoberries, a mild sedative, are perfect for this cause. Of course, because nothing is easy in ARK, animals won’t voluntarily eat sedatives so you’ll need to transfer your narcoberries into the Dodo’s inventory along with about 20-30 other berries. Most animals like Mejoberries best, but it doesn’t really matter. 

You’ll need to monitor the bird’s torpor and keep force-feeding it narcoberries (press RT when the berry is in the bird’s inventory) a little bit at a time to keep the Dodo’s torpor above zero while it’s in the process of being tamed. To keep track of the tame meter, you can exit the animal’s inventory and simply look at it’s prone body. Two bars should pop up: one that displays it’s torpor level, the other that displays its tame progress.

As you progress through the game and tame larger and larger creatures the process is identical, it just takes more time and requires more resources. Certain species also require what’s referred to as a “passive tame,” which basically requires you to follow it around and feed it one unit of food at a time. It’s a little arduous. But, most “passive tame” species are rare early in the game, so you just need to worry about knocking your target out and making sure you have enough time and resources to complete the process.

In the case of the Dodo, the entire Dodo tame should require about 5 narcoberries and about 25 assorted other berries. The whole process should take about five minutes from the KO to naming your new buddy.

Once your Dodo is tamed, you can start transferring berries into the little guy’s inventory. Not only can the bird use these as food, but it takes some of the weight off you and it significantly increases the lifespan of the berries.

Leveling Up

Hopefully, by now you’ve gained a level or two. If not, run around harvesting berries, chopping down trees, or beating up on rocks. You’ll definitely know when you level up; it’s pretty tough to miss the notification. Leveling up involves two tasks. You can pump up one of your base stats (like Health, Stamina, Food level, etc.), and then you can use Engram Points to purchase new recipes, which will allow you to build more complex items.

When you level up, press ‘B’ and open your inventory. You’ll notice that on the right side of your inventory screen, your base stats are highlighted. Pick one to improve (I like Fortitude early on, but it’s really your call). Once you’ve chosen a base stat to beef up, you’ll get to pick some new recipes. Each recipe costs Engram Points, which you receive whenever you level up. The first time you level up, you get 8 Engram Points to spend, a number which increases by 8 points every 10 levels.

The first thing you should buy with your EP’s is a campfire. After you buy that, you’ll still have 5 points to spend, so you can choose to buy one of the following: a spear you can use for combat (my personal fave because it’s launch-able), a hatchet you can use to get wood from trees or stone from rock, some basic clothes to keep you warm and provide damage resistance, or a club you can use to render animals unconscious, which is perfect when you’re trying to take down bigger species. No matter which order you buy them in, you should concentrate on those basics before buying anything else. 

Once you’ve gotten yourself clothed and stocked with some weaponry, it’s probably a solid idea to begin learning the recipes you’ll need to build your first home: thatch walls, foundations, ceilings, door frames, and doors. That’s later, though. First…

It’s Time To Put Some Meat On Those Bones

Let’s get back to our campfire and your inevitable sense of growing aggravation because you’re constantly having to walk around and pick berries to stave off starvation. In the early portions of the game, the best way to keep yourself full without having to work incessantly at harvesting plants is to kill something and cook its meat. 

First, follow the same process you used when crafting your pick to build the campfire. Then, find the campfire in your inventory, press RT to use the item, then press ‘B’ to exit the menu. You should see a silhouette on the ground in front of you. When the campfire is green you can place it (so do that). 

After that, you’ll need to find something small like a Dodo, a Dilophosaurus, or a fish. Fish and Dodos should require just a few whacks of your pick or spear to kill and they should be relatively harmless. If you’re taking on fish, just keep an eye out for attacking piranha and stick to shallow water. You do not want to tangle with a Megalodon.

Once you’ve found something and killed it, smack the corpse with your pick or spear to yield some raw meat (hit the corpse with your hatchet if you’re looking for hides). Then, approach the campfire and press ‘X’ to open the inventory. Add your raw meat to the campfire’s inventory along with some wood or thatch for fuel. Once your fuel is in the campfire’s inventory, you should be able to light the fire by either selecting the option on the menu screen or tapping ‘Y’ while you’re simply looking at the fire.

Campfires will not only cook your food, but they also provide warmth when things get especially chilly. As your fire roars, eventually your raw meat will turn into cooked meat, which you can eat to quickly regain 20 food at a time. Keeping some cooked meat on you or a nearby animal ally will ensure that you don’t need to waste a ton of early game time running around picking berries.

And Now You’re Off and Running

From here, it’s basically just a matter of repetition and experimentation while you pick up the necessary Engram Points to build out your inventory and construct your first home. If you keep a close eye on your food and water levels and you stay away from the bigger, meaner creatures, you shouldn’t have any issues gaining a foothold on your mysterious new home.


Slacker. Here are the Cliff Notes … 

  1. Remember, you’re always in the process of dying from hunger and exposure.
  2. Pick some berries.
  3. Punch down two trees.
  4. Craft and equip a pick.
  5. Get some flint by hitting a big rock.
  6. Craft a torch.
  7. Knock out a Dodo.
  8. Tame it with 5 narcoberries and about 25-30 other berries (not Stimberries).
  9. Learn how to craft a campfire.
  10. Build a campfire.
  11. Kill something.
  12. Cook that thing on your shiny new campfire.
  13. Learn how to craft other crap.
  14. Build said crap.

Next time, we’ll talk about building advanced structures, building a tribe, interacting with other players, and strategies for assembling your dino army.

When you boot up a new game in Ark: Survival Evolved, you'll be Until you make your first kill and gather enough hide to make a Waterskin.

ARK: How to Light a Campfire (Survival Evolved)

When you boot up a new game in Ark: Survival Evolved, you’ll be unceremoniously dumped into the wilderness. Here’s what you need to know to survive.

With no tutorial and the clock ticking on how long it takes the environment, the wildlife, and your characters’ biological needs to kill you, you’re going to need a hand. Our tips and tricks will come in handy for survival.

Character Creation

For the most part, this is fairly straightforward.

Character customisation allows for all sorts of weird and wonderful body parts, and while short arms or legs won’t impede you, if your character is very tall, very wide, or fairly small, it will have an effect on certain aspects of gameplay, like visibility.

All characters will start out bald so don’t fret if you can’t find the hairstyle options. Hair will grow with time spent in the game.

Once you’ve got your character setup, you should choose a spawn point in the southern part of the island, which is the easiest area. But that doesn’t mean there aren’t dangerous creatures lurking nearby, so keep a weather eye out.

Heading inland will be harder and the difficulty will increase the further north you go.

If you want to know more about levelling up your character, we have a guide for that too.

Starting out

Once you drop in, your character’s hunger and thirst meters will begin to slowly deplete. You need to get food, water, and shelter fast.

Check out our Engrams guide for a more detailed breakdown of which crafting recipes you should focus on, but for now, you should get to punching trees to gather just enough wood and thatch for a Stone Pick. You’ll also need a stone which you can pick up from the ground.

There’s no point punching trees for longer than necessary as it will deplete your health.

The Stone Pick engram is already unlocked, so you can navigate straight to the crafting menu to make it.

Continue gathering materials – specifically flint – until you level up. Once you’ve decided on which stats to invest in on the character menu, you’ll be taken to the Engrams menu.

For the first few levels, you’ll receive 8 Engram Points (EP) each time you level up, but this will increase as you level up.

Focus on crafting the Stone Hatchet and the Spear for more efficient resource gathering, and to start hunting for hide and meat.

Hunger and Thirst

If the wildlife doesn’t kill you, these two will.

While you’re gathering materials and XP to unlock the Spear engram, forage berries from bushes by interacting with them with your bare hands. You can read more about resources and the best ways to gather them in our resource locations and harvesting guide.

Don’t eat Narcoberries. As the name suggests, they’ll send you to the land of nod, The berries are used in the dinosaur taming process, so they’ll come in handy eventually. Just not as a snack.

Stimberries dehydrate you, so if there isn’t a body of water nearby, you’re better off giving them a miss. The berry prevents your character from getting knocked out, so it’s worth hanging onto them for emergencies.

Once you’ve made a spear, you can go in search of something small and innocent-looking, like a dodo, and kill it. Chuck the meat into your campfire inventory, or eat it raw to satiate your hunger.

The Hatchet yields hide when used on a corpse, while the Stone Pick will give you meat.

Until you make your first kill and gather enough hide to make a Waterskin, you can stay hydrated by submerging yourself in water for a few seconds or by standing in the rain.

If you decide to go foraging further inland, a Waterskin is a must, but they slowly leak water, so you’ll want to upgrade to a Water Jar sooner rather than later.

Temperature Regulation

Running around in your underpants is going to get a bit drafty in the old nether regions, and everywhere else for that matter.

Getting too hot will dehydrate you, while getting too cold will eat into your hunger bar.

As long as you start gathering resources straight away, it shouldn’t take more than a few minutes to unlock the Campfire, which will keep you nice and toasty.

If you need to venture further afield, a torch will also keep you warm. If you get too hot, find some water to take a dip in.

Eventually you can unlock engrams for armour, and you can invest points in fortitude which helps you survive adverse weather conditions. If you have plans on trying out Scorched Earth, investing points in your Fortitude stat is a must before you venture off the island.

Insulation is also important when it comes to armour and maintaining your temperature. Some armour sets will keep you cooler than others, while others will do a better job of keeping you snug.

Base Building

Building a safe haven in Ark: Survival Evolved is imperative to survival, both in PvE, and PvP.

As well as offering shelter from the elements, it’s a fortress against other players, and a stronghold to house your dinosaur army. You can check out our dinosaur taming guide when you’re ready to start amassing your scaly followers.

The search for a prime bit of real estate will take some time, so you’ll have to build a few makeshift shacks in locations that are less than ideal when you start out.

Building a simple thatch hut straight away is advisable. You can gather materials to build sturdier structures and scout for better locations as you level up and start exploring further afield.

To begin with, try to find somewhere tucked out of the way, but not too far from the south beach – which is where we recommend you spawn in.

Of course you need to be aware of the local wildlife. You’ll want some animals around for resources, but avoid areas where large and deadly creatures roam.

If you set down a structure in the wrong place, press and hold the interact button and highlight demolish.

Popping a Storage Box in your house to store resources in, and laying a sleeping bag down as a respawn point should be next on the list.

Stick to thatch until you’ve found the perfect place to settle down. By then you’ll have enough resources to build a new house made of stronger stuff straight away.

Loot Crate Beacons

As you go about life on the island, you’ll notice huge beacons of light peppering the landscape, in a variety of colours.

These are loot drops, and the colour of the beacon indicates the level required to open them.

Inside, you’ll find resources, weapons, and blueprints. The better quality items are in the higher level containers.

If you’re playing PvP, expect to fight to the death for the spoils. If the crate isn’t present at the beacon, it hasn’t yet dropped, so stand clear of the light to avoid getting hit by it.

Here’s how the colour coding works:

  • White: Level 3
  • Green: Level 15
  • Blue: Level 25
  • Purple: Level 35
  • Yellow: Level 45
  • Red: Level 60

The durability of the crate will gradually decreases. If it reaches zero before it’s been looted, it’ll fall apart.


After you’ve crafted tools, you’ll naturally equip them in your hotkey bar.

When they eventually break, rather than rifling through the menu to craft it again, you can simply press the mapped button for the specific tool or weapon to immediately craft another.

This goes for whatever is in your hotkey bar – whether it’s a door, a wall, or a campfire. As long as you have the materials, you’re good to go.


Your first weapon is going to be a Spear. They’re pretty handy for keeping dinos at bay whilst you’re poking them to death, and as an added bonus, you can throw them, so it’s always best to have a few to hand.

The slingshot is ideal for ranged combat, and if you use the terrain to your advantage, you stand a good chance of taking out the more difficult enemies while you remain out of their reach.

Bolas are also handy if you’re outmatched, giving you time to make an escape, or get some serious stabbing in before the immobilisation effect wears off. Bolas are great for PvP too.

Keep an eye on your stamina bar. If it runs out, you won’t be able to run. Have some Stimberries to hand in your hotkey bar to replenish stamina, as well as food to top up your health.


Tribes are an integral part of PvP, and if you want to thrive, you should shack up with one.

Not only will it offer you protection against rogue players and the more scary dinosaurs, but you’ll level up faster thanks to the bonus XP shared between members when carrying out activities with one another.

Tribe members share spawn points and, depending on your settings, they’ll share tamed dinos too. It’s wise to be sure of your allies before fully committing your pets to the tribe, because they won’t follow you when you leave.

Just like a regular guild, players are promoted and demoted to specific roles to assist with tribe management and other mundane team-related tasks.

Access to gates and doors can be restricted to allow certain members to pass. Or you can opt to set it to open for the entire tribe, keeping out non-members entirely.

Of course, tribes aren’t just useful for waging war on other players and building a dino army. If you’ve got your eye on taking down end-game bosses, you should buddy up.

Have you got any tips of your own for players starting out in Ark: Survival Evolved? Pop them in the comments below.

how to craft a campfire in ark

At the beginning, ARK: Survival Evolved is pretty merciless. Never fear, however, because we're here to make sure you can stick it . Add your raw meat to the campfire's inventory along with some wood or thatch for fuel.

how to craft a campfire in ark
Written by JoJoramar
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