Survival Guide - Your first day

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This guide is a collaboration between many individuals and may have issues. A wonderful member of the community, copygirl, who is a contributor to the Vintage Story code, has compiled a more concise and potentially more user friendly survival guide on her own page. As with the wiki, there is no guarantee on the accuracy of the content and is correct to the best of the author's knowledge.


This is the default key bind, please keep in mind that when changing, for instance, the Shift key for sneaking to a different one, all combinations previously using the shift key will change to your new key choice as well.


W A S D To move around
Space Jump
E Backpack Inventory (Access Crafting Grid)
C Character Inventory (Clothes and other Gear)
Shift Sneak (used to place active items on blocks)
Ctrl + W Run
G Sit down
Q Drop currently held item
F5 Cycle through camera modes (first person, third person, overhead)

User Interface

tab Show/Hide chat overlay
T Begin typing in the chat overlay
F4 Show/Hide user interfaces
F6 Show/Hide user minimap
B Show/Hide block info
H Survival Handbook - can also be used while hovering over an item in the inventory
SHIFT + H Survival Handbook while looking at a block or item in the world
M Show/Hide worldmap
N Show/Hide block interaction help
V Show/Hide coordinates
F12 Take a screenshot
esc Exit/close any interface

Your first day

Player Spawn

Players appear in the world at the "spawn location". If a player dies in the game, the player will reappear (respawn) at the initial spawn location until the player spawn point is reset (a way to reset player's spawn location can be found later in the game.) It's a good idea to set a marker for this spawn point when a player first appears in the world. Either right mouse click on the world map or through the command /waypoint add [waypointcolor] [title]. This command adds a waypoint with given color (any .NET Color or a Hex Code) and text.

Stone tools

Branches and Stones
Knapping process

In order to start the Stone Age, you will need Stone Tools, the process usually involves the following:

  1. Find Flint or Loose Stones (basalt, granite, andesite, obsidian or peridotite).
  2. Sneak + Right click on solid ground to create a knapping surface. (Only Flint will immediately create a knapping surface. In order to use the other loose stones, you need to place it once, then Sneak + Right click again with another loose stone.
  3. Choose the tool to create from the menu. Axe and a Knife are highly recommended as first tools.
  4. Using a stone in the active hand, left click on the orange boxes to remove them from the stone and shape the finished blade or tool head. When the last orange box is removed, the completed tool head will transfer to the player's hotbar.
  5. Press E to open the inventory GUI and access the crafting grid. In the grid, combine the stone tool blade with a stick (handle) to create the finished tool.
Note: Sticks can be collected from the ground or by breaking leafy branches using left click.

Player Inventory

Players have access to 3 types of inventory slots.

  1. Off-hand slot that can hold passive items such as torchers or lanterns.
  2. Main inventory that holds 10 slots and every slot is linked to a shortcut for quick access (default: keys 1 to 0).
  3. Portable containers. Up to 4 containers can be added to expand the inventory even further, the slots are shown in the inventory/crafting window (default: E key).
Tip: Hand Baskets are the best first options to expand your inventory. Harvest Reeds, which can usually be found near lakes. The crafting grid can be found here or by pressing H and searching for basket to see its grid crafting recipe.


Food scavenging time!

Here are some of the first day options for food:

  • Mushrooms can be harvested with a knife or empty hands. They will regrow at the exact spot, so marking mushroom clusters on the map can be advantageous. Make sure to check the mushroom with the Handbook to check for poisonous variants.
  • Ripe Berries can be harvested without tools, and then broken and replanted anywhere else. After a while they will start to bloom again.
  • Cooper's Reed (Cattail) roots can be harvested using a knife and cooked over a fire as a source of early game forage.
  • Most animals can be killed and harvested with a knife for nutritious meat and fat. Hold Sneak + Hold Right mouse button with a knife in hand to harvest animals. Meat must be cooked in a fire pit.


Find clay and take it with you or mark it on the map.

Clay is a required resource to progress through the ages, and in early game it can be used to build comparatively cheap stationary storage options and your first means to preserve food for a bit longer. It is also required to craft a cooking pot, which is necessary for advanced cooking.

Detailed information can be found in the Clay Forming page.

Light / Cooking

Crafting a firepit.

Once the sun sets, a player might want to create a firepit as a source of light and for cooking. Be aware though, rain will extinguish any uncovered fires or torches, so be sure to build a simple roof over any firepits.
Gather the following resources:

  • Dry grass: left click with a Knife in hand to gather Tall Grass.
  • Firewood: left click with an Axe in hand to cut Trees and harvest logs. Place the axe and logs in the crafting grid to create firewood.

Hold Sneak + Right click on solid ground with the dry grass in hand to place a fire pit. Next, Sneak + Right click with 4 firewood in hand to complete the fire pit. Then, light the fire using a firestarter (or a torch), hold Right click with either item in hand and aim at the base of the firepit. (Optionally check the handbook, opened with H, to find out how to make a firestarter.)

Congratulations, meat can be cooked and new torches created by heating sticks! Be careful though, a torch in your off hand will cause you to take an increased hunger penalty, and torches held while taking a dip in water will get extinguished.



To defend against hostile creatures, craft stone age weapons by knapping or carving a club from a log. Different weapons have different ranges. Spears are the strongest long range weapon in the stone age, but break quickly. Create a stone spearhead by knapping, and combine with a stick (shaft) in the crafting grid to finish the spear. Wooden clubs are durable but have less damage and less range. Knives, axes, or just plain sticks can all be used as weapons, but these have shorter ranges than the spear. In an emergency, small stones can be thrown at mobs. For more information, see the main article on Combat


Improvised body armor can be crafted from dry grass and firewood for some very basic protection. It will not protect your head or legs, but is better than nothing. Once more established in the world of Vintage Story, more advanced types of armor can be crafted.


Once the sun sets, a player might also like a shelter. There are different blocks that you can use to make a shelter using the early resources you have available. Dry grass can be used to make a bed early on, or form hay blocks/cob for early building blocks. Soil is also a good building material, and can be used to form Mud Bricks.

Stationary Storage

See Container's main article for detailed information.
In picture: a chest, a vessel and a basket.

For more storage, the player can craft two early game containers.

  • Baskets have 8 slots for items, however they require a total of 24 cattails and shouldn't be used to store food if possible.
  • Storage Vessels have 12 slots. They require clay to craft and have the best spoilage rates in the game, which make them suitable for food storage.
  • Chests have 16 slots, but require boards, which also require access to smithing.


See Temperature's main article for detailed information.

The player's body temperature needs to be kept around 37°C. Prolonged times with body temperature under this mark will result in freezing animations and even damage taken. Beware that dipping in water or being out in the rain will make your temperature drop faster. Standing near a lit campfire can warm the player up and the body temperature will stay up a while even after stepping away.

Temporal Stability

See Temporal Stability's main article for detailed information.

By now a player might be wondering about the cyan gear between the health and satiety bar. This is the temporal stability meter, the level of color in the gear indicates the player's current temporal stability. As a player's temporal stability reduces, the gear turns counter clockwise and the blue color in the gear decreases. When increasing, the gear's color returns as it turns clockwise. If temporal stability reaches zero, the player's vision will change drastically, and bad things tend to happen.

Draining temporal stability:

  • Some surface areas are temporally unstable
  • Caves, underground caverns, and places below surface level are generally more unstable than the surface of the world
  • Temporal storms (occur at regular intervals)

Recovering temporal stability:

  • Move to a location of high stability on the surface or at higher elevations in the world
  • Transfer the temporal stability from a temporal gear: hold the gear in the left hand, a knife in the right hand, and hold right mouse button to provide a 30% boost
  • Killing drifters recovers small amounts of your own temporal stability

Advanced Game Mechanics

Once the basics are mastered, players can develop advanced technology: Survival Guide - Advanced tech

Tutorial Video: First Day

Thanks to Ashantin for creating and sharing with the VS community.

Vanilla Game Content
Terrain Blocks

Rawclay blue.pngClay Grid Gravel Granite.pngGravel Peat.pngPeat Grid Rock granite.pngRock Grid Granite sand.pngSand Grid Barren low fertility soil.pngSoil

Construction Blocks

Claybricks-blue.pngCeramic Blocks Glass-plain.pngGlass Planks-oak.pngPlanks Grid Diagonal logs plaster.pngPlaster Grid Cob.pngSoil Blocks Grid Polished Granite.pngStone Blocks Grid Stone path.pngPath

Functional Blocks

Grid Barrel.pngBarrel Grid Woodbucket.pngWooden Bucket Bed-wood-head-north.pngBed Chest-east.pngContainers Firepit lit.pngFirepit Forge.pngForge Grid Loot Vessel.pngCracked Vessels Grid Ore blasting bomb.pngOre blasting bomb Grid Large trough.pngTrough

Decorative Blocks

Grid Painting.pngPainting Mediumcarpet-turqoise-ns.pngCarpets Bookshelves-ns.pngBookshelves Flowerpot-earthern-empty.pngFlowerpots Agedwallpaperplanks-green-east.pngWallpapers Salvation.pngTapestry

Metal Working

Grid Copper anvil.pngAnvil Bloomery.pngBloomery Grid Crucible burned.pngCrucible Forge.pngForge Grid Tin bronze helve hammer.pngHelve_hammer Ingot Mold Burned.pngMolds Grid Copper Ingot.pngMetal Gem-emerald-rough.pngGemstone

Tools & Weapons

Grid Copper axe.pngAxe Bow-simple.pngBow Grid Copper Chisel.pngChisel Grid copper cleaver.pngCleaver Grid Wooden club.pngClub Grid Copper hammer.pngHammer Hoe-copper.pngHoe Knife-copper.pngKnife Pickaxe-copper.pngPickaxe Grid Copper prospecting pick.pngProspecting Pick Grid Copper saw.pngSaw Scythe-copper.pngScythe Grid Copper shears.pngShears Grid Crude Square Shield.pngShield Shovel-copper.pngShovel Grid Copper spear.pngSpear Sword-copper.pngSword


Armor-body-brigandine-iron.pngArmor Clothes-upperbody-lackey-shirt.pngClothes Grid Backpack.pngBags

Craftable Resources

Grid Oak board.pngBoards Charcoal.pngCharcoal Coke.pngCoke Grid Firewood.pngFirewood Grid Copper Ingot.pngIngots Grid Raw hide.pngLeather Flaxtwine.pngFlax


Berrybush red currant ripe.pngBerries Grid mushroom bolete.pngMushrooms Grid Cattail tops.pngCooper's Reed (Cattail) Flower-californiapoppy.pngFlowers Tallgrass-tall.pngGrass Tallfern.pngOther Plants Sapling-oak.pngTrees Sapling-oak.pngFruit Trees Flax.pngWild Foods


Bear-male-polar.pngBear BeeMob.pngBees Creature-bell-normal.pngBell Bighorn.pngBighorn sheep Rooster.pngChicken Normal Drifter.pngDrifter Creature-fox-male.pngFox Hare-male-lightbrown.pngHare Hyena.pngHyena Locust.pngLocust Raccoon.pngRaccoon Pig.pngWild Pig Wolf.pngWolf


Pig.pngAnimal Husbandry Grid Empty skep.pngBeekeeping Grid Crucible burned.pngCasting Grid Blue clay.pngClay Forming Sword-copper.pngCombat Hoe-copper.pngFarming Bread-spelt.pngCooking Bone.pngHealth Flax.pngSatiety Grid Flint arrow head.pngKnapping Grid Angled Gears.pngMechanical Power Pickaxe-copper.pngMining Grid Copper anvil.pngSmithing Creature-humanoid-trader-treasurehunter.pngTrading Gear-temporal.pngTemporal Stability Grid Copper hammer.pngSteel Making


Grid Lore Book.pngCrafting Recipes Charcoal.pngFuel Grid Raw hide.pngLeather Working Torch.pngLight sources Grid Copper Chunk.pngOre Deposits Grid Ruins.pngRuins Grid Lore Scroll.pngStarter Guide Berrybush blueberry ripe.pngWorld Generation