ark survival ascended beginner tips

Image source: Studio Wildcard

Survive the onslaught.

It’s the old made new again! ARK Survival Ascended is Evolved remastered, tasking players with navigating an adventure filled with prehistoric creatures and a battle for survival. Here we’ll delve into the essentials of ARK Survival Ascended if you’re a beginner, and equip you with useful tips and tricks that every newcomer needs to navigate this uncharted territory. Let’s get dino hunting.

Note that we’re keeping this page updated with relevant new info we think would be useful to beginners.

Ark Survival Ascended Beginners Need to Know

As mentioned above, ARK Survival Ascended is an enhanced version of the renowned ARK: Survival Evolved. In this open-world sandbox, you’ll find yourself surrounded by an array of dinosaurs, mythical creatures, and other adventurers. Your primary goal? Survive, gather resources, tame dinosaurs, construct strongholds, and advance your technology while engaging in both friendly cooperation and fierce combat.

Before you go any further, be sure to check out our interactive map, which highlights all the resources and POIs on The Island. It’s an essential tool as you set out on your journey.

What to Do First in Ark Survival Ascended

Create Your Character

Your ARK Survival Ascended journey begins with the creation of your character. Honestly, the choice of appearance is a matter of personal preference; it doesn’t impact gameplay. However, as is the case in any RPG, selecting a character you connect with on some level enhances immersion by allowing you to role-play the profile of your preference.

Choose a Spawn Location

Picking the right spawn point is pretty important in the early portion of the experience. If you’re new to the game, we recommend starting in one of the “Easy” zones like South Zone 1 or South Zone 2. These regions offer a friendlier environment with fewer threats, perfect for new players.

Gather Resources

Gathering resources is obviously the cornerstone of your survival in the early game. The basics include wood, thatch, fiber, stone, flint, and more. Most of these are pretty easily found, but just for you, dear reader, let’s break down the basics:

Gathering Wood, Thatch, and Fiber – Wood is essential for crafting and building structures. To collect wood, find a tree and punch it until wood appears in your inventory. Thatch and Fiber can also be obtained in a similar way. Once you acquire a Stone Hatchet, gathering wood becomes more efficient.

Obtaining Food – Food is crucial for your character’s survival. Gather basic food items like berries by approaching plants and using the character action command (usually ‘E’ on your keyboard or ‘Y’ on your Xbox controller). Collect different types of berries, including Stimberrys, Cianberry, Tintoberry, and Narcoberry. Alternatively, you can hunt small dinosaurs using a stone pick and cook them over a campfire.

Collecting Stone – Stone is necessary for crafting tools and specific structures. Look for small stones, often found on beaches, and collect them by interacting with them (typically ‘E’ on the keyboard or ‘Y’ on an Xbox controller). If the interaction animation doesn’t trigger, it means the object isn’t a collectible stone. An alternative method is to use a Stone Pick to harvest stone from suitable sources.

Later in the game, you’ll need resources such as Silica Pearls to craft more advanced gear and weaponry that require electronic components.

Crafting Your First Tools

Now you’ve got your materials, it’s time to craft some useful gear, such as the Stone Pick, Stone Hatchet, and Spear. These tools are your best friends, significantly improving your resource-gathering efficiency and self-defense capabilities.

Here are the best items to craft first in ARKSurvival Ascended:

  • Stone Pick: Requires 1 Stone, 1 Wood, and 10 Thatch. This tool efficiently gathers resources from rocks.
  • Stone Hatchet: Requires 1 Stone, 1 Wood, and 10 Thatch. Ideal for obtaining wood, thatch, and fiber from trees and plants.
  • Spear: Requires 12 Wood, 50 Fiber, and 20 Hide. A basic weapon for hunting and self-defense.
  • Campfire: Requires 12 Stone, 16 Wood, and 3 Flint. An absolute must for cooking meat and providing light and warmth.

Later in the game, you’ll be able to craft your own armor sets. Once you’ve reached that stage, check out our round-up of the best armor in the game and how to craft them all.

Ascended Beginner Tips & Tricks You Should Learn

Build a Shelter

Building a shelter from thatch or wood is a top priority. It protects you from the elements and hostile creatures. This shelter doubles as a secure storage area. Don’t forget to craft a Campfire, an essential tool for cooking food and ensuring warmth during the night. We’ve included a handy overview of a basic starter base above.

Later, once you’ve grinded up to Level 20+, you can begin to flesh your base out with more advanced structures that require various machinery. These are all powered by gasoline, which is fabricated from various sources but mostly (and unsurprisingly) requires oil.

We have a full overview of the best locations to build a base in ARK.


As in any good survival game, maintaining proper hydration and nourishment is all part of the fun. Berries can be a quick source of food, but there’s only so much you can extract from them. For proper sustenance, you’re going to need to hunt. Cooked meat provides better nourishment and health benefits, helping you thrive in the wild. With your newly crafted tools, take on some smaller creatures or fish for a steady source of protein.

In the case of fishing, it’s worth noting this can’t actually be done until you’re level 18. Once you’ve hit that, collect the following items to make a fishing rod:

  • x50 Fiber
  • x20 Thatch
  • x12 Wood

Tame Dinosaurs

Taming dinosaurs is a core element of ARK Survival Ascended. For beginners, we’d recommend starting with smaller, more manageable creatures like Dodos. To tame them, feed them their preferred food, usually berries or seeds. Also, craft a Wooden Club; it’s useful for tranquilizing and taming larger dinosaurs, such as the Doedicurus.

To maximize the efficiency of your taming efforts, understand the preferred food and taming methods for various dinosaurs. This ensures you achieve the best results from your taming endeavors. Also, consider crafting Tranq Arrows for more effective dinosaur tranquilization.

Later in the game when you have more experience you can breed dinos and improve their stats using the imprint system.

Learn the Engram System

The Engram system unlocks crafting blueprints as you level up. Prioritize essential engrams like the Campfire, Spear, Cloth Armor, and Slingshot. Unlocking these blueprints ensures your survival and defense are on solid ground.

Be Cautious of Predators:

Ark’s wilderness is brimming with danger, including carnivorous dinosaurs (think giant T-Rex’s!) You won’t be surprised to learn that it’s worth crafting some weapons to protect yourself. Spears and ranged weapons like Slingshots are your friends in fending off potential threats, especially in the wilderness. Later in the game more advanced weaponry, such as crossbows, can be crafted. These require a certain level and special materials.

Explore the Map

Venturing beyond your initial spawn point is essential for discovering valuable resources and diverse biomes. But be ready for new challenges as you explore uncharted territory. Craft a Water Skin to ensure a constant supply of fresh water during your expeditions. Remember, you can explore the map in both first and third person view.

Join a Tribe

Consider forming or joining a tribe to pool resources, collaborate on tasks, and provide protection against aggressive players and creatures. Teamwork improves your chances of surviving in Ark, but it’s also way more fun playing with buddies than it is in solo. This is how the game is really intended to be played. Tribemates can also assist in taming and constructing advanced structures.

You should now be equipped with enough basic knowledge to survive the early game in ARK Survival Ascended. Remember, though, if you’re stuck and want some cheats to help you out then we have a full list of console commands. If you encounter the dreaded fatal error crash then check out our tutorial on how to solve it.