Getting started in Rust

Many people who join Rust for the first time don't even know where to begin. I put this guide together to run through my thought process when starting from scratch.

Starter tips

  • Take a second to examine the little Unity dialog box when you click “Play”. This box contains all of your keybindings and you won’t have an option to change these until you restart the game.
  • Crafting context: If you’re not crafting, you’re wasting time.
  • Have everything you need for your base before you decide to build one.


  • Everyone spawns on the beach making it a cluster-fuck of naked men hitting each other with rocks. As your first priority, get away from the beach!
  • While hauling ass, take a moment to smash any of the barrels you see (6 hits with a rock or 3 hits with a wood spear).
  • Destroyed barrels will drop between 0 and 3 bags of randomized loot and blueprints.
  • If you find a blueprint, left click and study it immediately (this will allow you to craft the item, even after you die).


  • Durability was recently reintroduced to Main and it can take you by surprise and leave you high and dry if you let it. Next to most tools and weapons (even your rock) there is a green bar that decreases vertically as it is worn down. 
  • In addition to just wearing down, tools that are used in the wrong way will deteriorate faster.
  • Wood should be reserved for hatchets and axes.
  • Stone should be reserved for your Rock, the pickaxe, and the icepick.
  • Harvesting animals should be done by the axes or hatchets as well.
  • There is a repair bench now but, repairing an object 

Nodes from left to right: Metal, Sulfur, Stone


  • Once you’re in a safer area, start hitting a tree with your rock till you have 300 wood. Then, start crafting a wooden spear and gather ~300 more wood while that’s crafting. The wooden spear is currently the best starting melee weapon.
  • Find a stone node, and harvest it with your rock until you have 100 stone. Make a stone hatchet with 100 stone and 200 wood.
  • Kill an animal with your spear or hatchet (spear hits harder but attacks slower). Congratulations, you've made your first kill in Rust!
  • Don’t spend too much time celebrating, harvest that trophy stag with your stone hatchet to get the most cloth.
  • If you are having some difficulty finding any animals, be on the lookout for Hemp plants. You can pick them and it will give you 20 cloth each time.
  • If you're facing a predator (bear or wolf), the best way to kill it is to hit it once with the spear and switch quickly to your stone hatchet to finish it off. If executed properly, you can take less than 13 damage. In the beginning, you should try to avoid bears or wolves because they can do some real damage and tend to outrun you so give them a wide berth.

Get Crafty

  • You’ll want to keep your crafting queue busy so, when you do find your little slice of heaven, you can build without having to run back out to get more resources.
  • Make a wooden hammer (100 wood) and piece of paper (100 wood), and use the paper to create a building plan.
  • Gather ~5000 wood.
  • Here's a tool breakdown for wood gathering Rock: 375 per tree / 10 per hit, Stone Hatchet: 577 per tree / 14-16 per hit, Metal Hatchet: 628 per tree / 25 per hit, Salvaged Axe 540 per tree, 30 per hit
  • Make it a priority to have your sleeping bag and tool cupboard crafted as quickly as possible. Then, craft a campfire and a couple storage boxes if you like (the wood storage boxes are stackable now.

Get Buildy

  • Start building a house! You should make a 2x1 to start for simplicity’s sake (example pictured above). Use your wooden hammer to upgrade your walls to wood immediately since the twigs can be broken in seconds. Place your tool cupboard and click e on it to authorize yourself and prevent other players from building on your house within a 30m radius of the cupboard.
  • Protect this tool cupboard!  Anyone that can access this cupboard can demolish anything within it’s range. It’s recommended that you move this thing up two or three levels after you get situated. Another note, the first cupboard you place takes precedence over the next cupboard you place. So protect that first one the most. You can destroy them but they do take a beating.
  • For the time being, you don’t have any metal frags to make a lock, so place some steps in front of your door so that they block it. You can rotate the stairs with your wooden hammer until you get a lock. The key lock is the only locking option for a fresh spawn (code lock blueprint is worth it’s weight in gold).
  • Try to plan out where you want to place your sleeping bag and furnace using the picture above. Be careful, you can’t pick up your sleeping bag one you place it.  
  • Now, when you die (which you will) you’ll spawn on this sleeping bag.
  • The furnace is no longer an essential item since it will probably take you a minute to even get crafting recipes that require metal and in addition the furnace price is a little steep you need 10 cloth and 20 animal fat just for the low grade fuel. To supplement your metal fragment needs you can also smelt empty metal cans in your campfire.


  • All this work has made you hungry, time to use that campfire.
  • Hold E to open the campfire radial and right click and open the campfire and situate it like this:
  • Make sure you don’t put any stacks of meat in the campfire.
  • Hit tab to get out, press e again on the fire and it will ignite (as long as it has wood in it).
  • Meat currently takes 3 wood to cook and about 6 to burn.
  • Three seems to be the magic number for anything in the campfire right now.
  • Once cooked, you can throw it in your hotbar to eat it or use it from the inventory by selecting it.

Smelt, baby smelt!

  • This step is only pertinent once you get crafting recipes that use metal frags (if you don't have any yet, go break some barrels!)
  • Throw the metal ores you have so far in one furnace and your sulfur ores in other.
  • Spread your ore evenly through the slots. This is the most efficient way to burn your ore and will maintain a coal/sulfur stash so you can craft it as quickly as you smelt it. Currently it takes 10 wood for every ore.


  • Buildings can now be upgraded so it is worth it to build some shelter to protect your things. Learn more about it at our building upgrades guide.
  • Keep upgrading that house, or, make a couple houses and spread your loot between them.
  • For your endgame goals:
    • The Best Animal Harvesting Tool: Hatchet
    • The Fastest Wood Gather Tool: Hatchet
    • The Fastest Stone Gather Tool: Pickaxe
    • The Fastest Weapon for Destroying Walls: Assault Rifle
    • The Most Efficient Tool for Destroying Walls: C4

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