Rust Tips

Saving any rust tips I find here.

  • If you are not using key bindings, you are likely tiring out your pinky for no valid reason. I don’t ever hold down my mouse when chopping trees or mining nodes, or running or crouching for that matter. I just press Z, Q or C. Seriously, you must use these:
  • Other people can repair your base. Walls that have been damaged cannot be repaired for 30 seconds. If you’re trying to pick axe a wall inside your base in order to remove it, and an enemy wants to ruin your day, they can repair it back to full health if you wait too long between strikes… so make sure to craft all your pick axes at once and pick away at it until completion.
  • By the way, it takes 7 metal pick axes to take out a stone wall from the inside (the lighter side) and 3 metal pick axes for a wood wall from the inside. Don’t even bother with the exteriors of these walls. Doing so would take forever and you will get killed in the mean time.
  • Wooden door raiding is possible with a shotgun and handmade shells. If you see some bases that still have wooden doors and you think the interior doors are also wooden then give it a shot. It is loud and may take some time (about 45 shots with basic handmade shells and a waterpipe shotgun) but I’ve collected a ton of good loot from these. If you want to up the ante, try to research a double barelled shot gun with incendiary shells (requires 275 scrap in all, a level 2 workbench, and of course the items themselves to deposit into your research table). It only requires 16 incendiary shells to take out a wooden door, which is probably easier than finding a flamethrower these days. The other day I got an SMG, Python Revolver and a shit ton of materials. Well worth it.
  • Your tool cupboard can store a lot more than just the wood, metal and stone you need for upkeep. You can put all your crafting resources in it. Good to know when just starting out. I used to think I had to craft a bunch of boxes to get going but you can store leather, cloth, low grade fuel, sulfur, coal, bone, high quality metal, animal fat, etc. I just learned this by accident. This saves a lot of space when you’re just starting out.
  • Wooden key locks don’t actually require a key, unless you want to share access with a friend who did not craft the lock. Just apply the lock and lock it (by holding E and selecting “Lock”). This was a recent change that made it a lot easier for solo players to get going. I used to hide in my base scared shitless, waiting for things to quiet down before attempting to collect enough metal to build a code lock so I wouldn’t lose my base every time I left to collect resources. What a welcome change.
  • If you have the repair hammer equipped then you can pick up the following items by holding E and selecting “Pick Up”: rugs, wooden signs, window bars, boxes (small and large), traps (fire, shot gun, bear), barricades, lanterns, lamps, lights, spinning wheels, beds (not sleeping bags—you can always pick those up), research tables, repair benches, bear rugs… I may be missing some, but you can pick up most deployables or decorations. NOT campfires though. Weird.
  • Set up your first base as close to a mining outpost, gas station or supermarket as you can. The recyclers there will be very important for collecting scrap early on. You’ll need quite a bit of scrap to acquire work benches and to research your first guns. Feel free to move toward the interior later. If you’re really good at PVP then build around a power plant or The Dome. They don’t have radiation for the most part and the loot is superior, but of course this also attracts the better players on the server.

To use these simply press “F1” to bring up the console and type them in like this. Make sure to type “writecfg” without quotes to save them. Going into options and clicking Input’s “Reset to Default” appears to clear the binds.


Here’s a few of my favorites, changing the letter lets you use a different key:


Press Q to auto-run, press Shift and W to cancel.
bind q forward;sprint


Press Z to permanently crouch and auto-attack, press Left Click and Control to cancel.
bind z attack;duck


Hold Z to crouch and auto-attack (only while pressed.)

bind z +attack;+duck


Press C to permanently crouch, press Control to cancel.

bind c duck



Here’s a list of available binds. From what I can tell the “+” only allows it to fire once while no + will continually perform the action.

bind f1 consoletoggle
bind backquote consoletoggle
bind f7 bugreporter
bind w +forward
bind s +backward
bind a +left
bind d +right
bind mouse0 +attack
bind mouse1 +attack2
bind mouse2 +attack3
bind 1 +slot1
bind 2 +slot2
bind 3 +slot3
bind 4 +slot4
bind 5 +slot5
bind 6 +slot6
bind 7 +slot7
bind 8 +slot8
bind leftshift +sprint
bind rightshift +sprint
bind leftalt +altlook
bind r +reload
bind space +jump
bind leftcontrol +duck
bind e +use
bind v +voice
bind t
bind mousewheelup +invnext
bind mousewheeldown +invprev
bind tab inventory.toggle

  • Base building videos do help, if you suck at building watch some of these they do help.
  • Shops are helpful and cheap. You can ask for whatever you want, but scrap is usually what I ask for since I just farm at night. Personal preference
  • Try out different playstyles. Sometimes I’ll roll with your traditional gun / meds / ammo. However, I’ve grown to roll with some landmines and try to agro 3+. It’s unexpected and mines have AoE damage.
  • With the BP update, I’d recommend building next to a rad town since scrap is a must and stay away from Launch Site. (depending on your server pop) I started off building next to gas stations but there’s little room for cover, I would suggest power plant as there’s more room to run or fight.
  • Make more than 1 sleeping bag for your area. I always make a circle of sleeping bags around my main base, hiding them as best as I can. I also code them with #’s so I understand what bag I’m at and most people won’t rename my bag.
  • Pick your fights. As a solo you can only loot so much. If you can’t loot it all make a box / stash nearby hidden and try to get it but this is very risky.
  • Try to befriend your neighbors. Especially with BP’s you may get protection, get good BP’s or make a friend.
  • I like to make another base for public use to try and make friends for various reasons. I’ll make a base with fences, that people can use furnaces, research table, campfire, repair bench, you know the drill but protected so jerks can’t destroy it. Some wipes I do it to be friendly, sometimes I do it to bait people.
  • Careful fighting close to home. You don’t want aggro from groups
  • Starting out, you can recycle for metal frags to get a code lock, or use a stash. I prefer the stash only because I play on 300+ pop servers so it depends on your server pop.
  • Get that airlock ASAP
  • Find a gun you’re good with, maybe something inexpensive like a crossbow / waterpipe combo.
  • I build 1×1 near main base with a set of guns and gear, to try and counter raid if you’re getting attacked.
  • I play on heavy pop servers, so if you can farm at night when most are asleep.
  • As a solo player, we don’t usually see end-game stuff depending on how frequent wipes are. I personally do 2x servers just because I feel like my odds are slightly better (personal preference of course)

If predominately vertical:

  • 45 degrees of visibility directly down to defend against door campers or anyone crouched beside the first level tower walls.
  • Slanted roof tiles atop the tower for crouch sniping as well as some combination of door ways, partially obstructed windows (rugs, etc.) or embrasures for sniping.
  • Disconnected, airlocked vertical sections for ascending/descending (as opposed to one central column or chamber for going up/down) with separate high ceiling one tile elevator-style shafts for rapid descent and counter-attack during raids.

If predominately horizontal:

  • Extra honeycomb.
  • Plan for roof campers on your roof, both friend and foe.
  • Consider building against a rock face or in a valley. Use the terrain to make your base look smaller and less attractive to raiders.

If either, neither or both:

  • Buy Fortify. It’s cheap and handy for base planning.
  • Leverage angle deltas between diamond and square shapes for 3.0 stacking. It’s the new double wall. That’ll be 22 Satchels per tile per layer, please.
  • Twig roof tiles in hallways. Roof tiles with enclosed twig right angle blocks, when broken, cause the roof tiles to collapse on the hallway and trap anyone behind you.
  • Utilize half walls with three half walls per level. This gives you space to mount shotgun traps above interior doorframes. You can also place floors every half level and force people to crawl around.
  • A minimum of one level of crawl space as a vertical honeycomb layer if the ceiling is accessible or can be made accessible to raiders.
  • Leave any interior key infrastructure as twig. You can combine this with the aforementioned crawlspace to make stability traps that will place raiders in a section of the base sealed off from normal use to prevent accidental friendly fire in the case of snap traps.
  • Use no fewer than three PIN codes. One for the front door, one for the Tool Cabinet and one for the second door (airlock) and everything else.
  • Keep furnaces empty when not in use with a wooden hammer nearby for rapid pickup if you are online while you are being raised.
  • Build a separate, smaller base with a bed or lots of sleeping bags to provide overwatch for your main base. Keep a small chest of bare essentials that can be used if you need to counter raid. Ideally, you should have no less than three sleeping bags in any base or area where you plan to spend a lot of your time, comprised of (1) an interior spawn point, (2) an exterior spawn point and (3) an overwatch/counter spawn point. They should be named intelligently (map coordinates and their function should do the trick). Keep this base stocked with some flares. Throw them if your main is raided to draw more attention to the area. If no one new runs to investigate, you’ve put the enemy raiding your base on edge or slowed them down in the worst case scenario. Best case scenario, you will have counter raiders – mercenarial vultures that will kill your raiders for you.
  • Ladders placed on the interior wall, visible externally and leading to no where in order to mislead raiders. This is especially helpful when countering clever, opportunistic raiders who get the bare minimun of 4-8 satchels and go to a base thinking they will at least get through the airlock. If you can persuade those people to waste their explosives on a wall, it blunts both their attack on your base as well as their progress overall. Many players will get the bare minimum, get into a base and then get what they need from the first raid to go on a second, etc., until they snowball. You can similarly misdirect enemy raiders and scouts by placing one or two small furnaces in a sealed room with a sleeping bag and optional Dropbox. Fill the furnace slots with stacks of wood and light at night if you know your base has already been discovered or is in a high traffic enemy. They will spend ten or more Satchels thinking that they will save explosives on a double airlock by blowing that wall and will feel silly when they find a sleeping bag and a furnace. They will feel more than silly if there are traps waiting for them.
  • If you’ve built in a cold region, consider building in water. Deep water prevents explosive detonations and gunfire. Shallow water makes a lot of noise and conceals spike floor traps well. Otherwise dark colored, unharvested crops can offer an alternative, land-based solution. Clones from crop plots make this effectively free. Any water where it’s cold will deal damage over time to unclothed or metal, PvP armored players.
  • Create empty 2x2x2’s nearby. Light wood filled furnaces in them if you want to make the area look more active than it really is. With metal double doors, shelving and four pin-coded large chests you can use these structures as temporary loot storage. Raiders will spend a fair bit of resources to exploderino these only to be rewarded with.. nothing.
  • Consider using rooms built on triangle foundations with at least one door frame. You can fit three small furnaces per triangle foundation tile. Raiders are unlikely to waste four Satchels to get into these rooms, even if they’re already in your base.
  • Plant lots of booby trapped crops, campfires or small storage boxes where ever you want a player to die or stand still while checking everything. Sepf-explanatory.
  • If you have an early opportunity to make drop boxes, consider making a doorless base by leveraging beds and sleeping bags, as it more than doubles the cost per tile.
  • Last but not least, if you’re solo, in a small group or are otherwise similarly resource constrained, build a base that is modular and extensible so it can grow as your needs change.


Spend some time as a naked acquiring basic BPs. When you find a nice server you want to play in, spend some time as a naked running to the nearest rad town, grabbing BP fragments, and researching and learning basic BPs before you die. Absolutely essential is the large box, which is especially important for solo players because of the lack of space inside small homes. Try and get some weapon BPs (crossbow is a great mid-level weapon), tool BPs (hatchet is nice but not necessary to have), armor BPs (it’s nice to have wood armor), and it’s always nice to have a few extra BPs for later game.


Don’t get into a stupid rock fight. There is no reason to fight when all you have is a rock and a torch. If someone tries to start one, just run away. Even if you win such a fight, you’ll take a few hits that’ll negatively effect your survivability.

Craft in this order: spear, spear, campfire, bow, arrows, stone hatchet, stone pickaxe. You need one spear to kill with, one spear to throw, a campfire to cook up meat and bring your health up, a bow and arrows to defend yourself, and stone tools to begin gathering resources.

Cannibalism is essential to survive the first 10 minutes. If you can find a body or a sleeping person, kill him and harvest the human meat. Getting your calories above 100 allows you to regenerate health quickly when near a fire and gives you an important advantage over all of the other Newmans in the area competing for the same resources. If you can find a pig to kill, this is preferable, but you’re more likely to run into people.

Place a sleeping bag with a hidden stash nearby. When you find an area you want to settle in, place a sleeping bag and a hidden small stash nearby. Any raw resources you gather for construction should be placed in the stash–so that if you die, you can respawn at your bag and you haven’t lost your resources.

Fight smart, then run. Never throw your last spear. Bone clubs are mostly rubbish. A bow gives you a fighting chance against anyone. Running is preferable to fighting in most cases. If you kill one guy, and a friend shows up, run or hide. Don’t be the one to start combat when you’re trying to get established.

Accept your inevitable mortality. On a server of any significant size and population, you are going to die several times before you manage to get established. Some of my best builds and experiences started with 5-10 deaths, often before I even had a spear. Getting up again and not getting discouraged is necessary for reliable success at Rust.


Trust no one. It’s a cliche, sure. But seriously. Rust’s culture is toxic–if someone sees you have something they want, or they just decide to end you, they’ll kill you mid-conversation. Don’t open doors for anyone and don’t let anyone influence your behavior just by talking.

Hide. There are plenty of bushes and rocks around. If you hear someone’s loud footfalls, stay crouched (which makes your movement silent). Try and take routes which don’t involve running through open fields. Stick close to potential cover and remember to keep your eyes open. When you are outside your base, you are vulnerable—don’t make yourself easy to see.

Listen. Hearing the tell-tale signs of other players is essential for surviving solo. A good headset is absolutely essential for playing Rust as well. I recommend the G933, which has 7.1 stereo and will let you hear gunshots, explosions, and footfalls reliably and directionally. This is a little detail which can make all the difference when you’re fighting, running, or hiding.

Carry bandages and medical supplies in your hotbar. Early game, carry bandages to stop bleeding. Later on, when you leave the house, carry bandages to stop bleeding and medical supplies to quickly recover from injuries and gunshots. Keep at least one of them in your hotbar at all times, so that you can quickly bandage to prevent bleeding.

Weapons. Experiment with different combinations of weapons until you find one that suits you. Before I have high-quality firearms, I like to carry a machete for melee, a pipe shotgun for close range combat/ambush, and a crossbow for range.

Combat. Combat should be quick and decisive, with no room for mercy or conversation. Crouchwalk to quietly close on your target. Once they know you’re there, use cover and never stop moving. Hit them with a ranged weapon, move in, and finish them with melee or a pipe shotgun. Don’t get into an extended gunfight and don’t follow them into an area with which you’re unfamiliar. If you’re sprinting after somebody, you’re just as likely to step in a hidden bear trap as you are to actually catch them.


Find an isolated peninsula or island far from large bases and rad towns. Even on the high population servers, there are plenty of isolated areas. Don’t settle in the shadow of a large tower. Settling near a rad town is probably not feasible on a server like Rustopia—better to keep some distance between you and rad towns.

Build into the side of a cliff overlooking water. Not only does that offer potential raiders one less side to breach, it also means that your base will be almost invisible to anyone who is not specifically looking for it. Use triangle foundations to maximize internal space–I like a nice six triangle hexagonal build with one square foundation on one side to serve as the airlock.

Always build the whole house out of twig first, then upgrade immediately. Make sure the design you want is doable in the space you have by building it with twig first–but always have the wood, stone, and metal to upgrade everything right away. Avoid upgrading before the whole house is complete so you don’t waste materials upgrading an unfeasible build.

Don’t leave the house until you have a code lock on the door. If you have a regular wooden lock on the door, and you are killed holding a key, you will very likely lose your house. If you absolutely must leave (for instance, to gather animal fat to build a furnace for metal), keep an extra lock in your house. If you are killed carrying a key, you can quickly swap out the compromised lock with the new one, rendering the key on your body useless.

Always have an airlock. Always build another locked door behind your front entrance, and make sure you have more than one way in and out of your base. Sleep in your airlock–if someone raids you, they won’t break into the airlock, they’ll bypass it. It’s also good to have at least one sleeping bag in an airlock for the same reason. NEVER open both doors of the airlock at the same time.

Learn to love wooden spikes, walls and traps. A few well placed wooden walls, right up against your outer wall add an extra layer of defense. Spikes and traps can deny potential raiders access to vulnerable walls or block routes of approach to your base.

Place sloped roof tiles with spikes beneath. Putting down wooden spikes on your ceiling and then placing the sloped roof tiles atop those adds an extra layer of protection on the top of your base, which is vulnerable since you’ve built into the side of the cliff. If anyone tries to walk around on your roof, they’ll get a foot full of spikes.

Build a backup location nearby. This can be as simple as a sleeping bag with a stash—you can even reuse your sleeping bag and stash you used early on. Another good idea is to take over a nearby house which has been abandoned—this saves you resources and gives you a backup location in case your main base is under siege or you lose it to a raid. You never want to wake up on the beach with no options for spawning near your base.


Make friends with neighbors, especially other solo players. It’s good to approach folks unarmed, perhaps with a torch, to have a nice conversation. Just establish who you are, and that you live nearby, and promise not to attack or rob one another. Making friends isn’t the same as trusting them–don’t ever give them codes, let them inside your base, or even tell them where you live if you don’t need to. You can usually tell very quickly whether a conversation is worth your time—and if not, you can start formulating plans for how to deal with your new dick of a neighbor.

Don’t allow revenge, anger, or frustration to influence you. You’re going to die and people are going to be dicks to you. If you are killed, don’t go charging back unless you think you have a real chance of getting your stuff back. If someone is mocking you outside your house, don’t open the doors for any reason. Don’t allow someone else’s foolishness to influence how you react to your environment or to threats. Don’t engage with trolls.

Maintain a Depression-era mentality. Resource management in Rust is paramount. Waste nothing. Even charcoal from a fire can be used to craft gunpowder, bones can be used for armor and weapons, and a t-shirt can provide enough protection to mean the difference between life and death. Have a sense of what you have, and what you don’t, because a glut can turn into a shortage very quickly. Have enough storage to hold on to everything.

Never leave the house with anything you are unwilling to lose. Some soldiers have a ritual where they mourn themselves before they go into battle, accepting that they will die so that if they return, it is a happy surprise. This ritual should be yours every time you leave home, and you should consider anything you carry as lost. If you’re going out to gather resources, go naked with a hatchet. If you’re going to raid, don’t take your only gun or armor you can’t craft.

If you obtain an item you can’t craft, immediately take it back to your house to research. If you manage to snag metal armor, a firearm, or some other impressive item from a downed enemy or from a raided house, immediately head home and stash it. If you can grab some BP frags and construct a research desk, you’ll be able to research and craft it, adding to your long-term survivability.

Do not attack people or break into houses near your main base. If you piss someone off, and they find out where you live, you could lose everything. If you want to go out raiding—killing folks and taking their stuff or breaking into houses—go somewhere else. Your reputation there can be awful as long as they don’t know where you live.

Be wary of following people. If you can’t kill someone right away, better to let them go than get into a chase. Most people who get attacked will instinctively run back toward their base—meaning that they might have friends. Likewise they may know the location of traps and try to lead you into them. If you’re going to follow someone, have a damn good reason.