How to build a tribe from scratch and why it's the most successful way to play ARK: Survival Evolved.

ARK: Survival Evolved Guide – How to Build Tribes and Why You Should

How to build a tribe from scratch and why it's the most successful way to play ARK: Survival Evolved.

There’s no question that you can get by on your own in ARK: Survival Evolved given you know what you’re doing. After all, YouTube user Nooblets proved to the world that it’s possible to defend against insanely large tribes all by yourself. However, playing alone severely limits your available options — from your equipment to how many creatures you can saddle and ride.

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Luckily, you can experience everything ARK: Survival Evolved has to offer simply by joining or creating a tribe. Even a mere handful of players crafting and surviving together can accomplish everything they set out to do.

To create a tribe, open the Escape menu in-game and select Tribe Management. Here you can type in your Tribe Name. If you neglect to name your tribe before inviting the first player, it’s automatically called “Tribe of [Your Character Name].”

To invite players to your tribe, walk up to them and hold the E key until the selection wheel comes up. Hover your cursor over Invite to Tribe until the one-second timer is up then select it to invite the player.

If a player invites you to their tribe, a notification appears on the top part of the screen. To accept their invitation and join the tribe, walk up to the person who invited you and hold the E key until the selection menu pops up. Hover over Join [Tribe Name] until the one-second timer is up then select it to join the tribe.

Once you’ve got your Tribe established, it’s time to start thinking about roles for the active members to take on. In order to cover every Engram ARK: Survival Evolved has to offer, some tribe members will need to specialize. After all, you’ll want access to all of the highest tier structures and equipment available.

  • Given that everybody’s cool with sleeping in the same base, your tribe will need one or two Builders that provide shelter and other necessities for tribe mates and tamed creatures when there’s a demand. Speccing in all the crafting stations, structures, doors, ladders, stairs, spikes, beds, furniture, decorations, paint, signs, flags, pipes, water reservoirs, wires, generators, lights, elevators, farms, and storage costs a whopping 2319 Engram Points. Now that’s a hefty commitment, but the return is well worth it. Plus, even after all that, Builders still have another 795 Engram Points to play at level 100.
  • You want to get the most out of your tamed creatures, right? Great, then you’ll need one or two dedicated Tamers to saddle all those nifty prehistoric mounts. Speccing the saddles, platform saddles, cage, torpor weapons, immobilizing traps, and magnifying glass costs 1811 Engram Points. Note that this number doesn’t cover all of the Engram prerequisites for saddles. This is yet another giant commitment, but the freedom you gain with your tribe’s tamed creatures is more than worth it. If you’re wise, you can make the remaining 1303 Engram Points at level 100 stretch for miles.
  • For the most part, the rest of the tribe can do what they want with Engrams and you’ll be golden. However, a few members may wish to dedicate themselves as a Warrior or Smith to make sure the tribe always has top tier equipment. It costs 1677 Engram Points to learn every weapon, attachment, armor set, and explosive in the game. This is a rather light commitment, compared to the Tamer and Builder, and even leaves the Warrior Smith with 1437 Engram Points to spare at level 100.

Note: none of these calculations included Scorched Earth Engrams. If you’re playing the DLC, plan accordingly.

Once you’ve got the tribe set up and the basic roles assigned, it’s time to begin plotting your progression. If you’re playing on PvP server, you should be careful to avoid attracting the attention of the larger, more dominant and long-established tribes. You never know when one may wander over to your base one eventless evening and decide to level it.

A great way to stay low-key is to only tame the dinosaurs you need. While taming and saddling a T-Rex, Bronto, or a Mammoth as soon as possible may sound like fun and exciting ideas, these big, unwieldy creatures attract too much attention. They could almost be perceived as literal declarations of power.

Instead, you’ll want to tame creatures that give your tribe a major boost in its gathering and crafting capabilities. Go after things like Trikes for harvesting berries, Beavers for wood, Megaloceros for thatch, Ankylosaurs for metal, Doedicurus for stone, Direbears for fiber, Sabertooths for hide, Direwolves for leech blood, and Scorpions for their narcotic venom. These creatures are the true power behind any good tribe. Forego the large ones until later.

ARK: Survival Evolved Guide - How to Build Tribes and Why You Should

Now you know why and how to build a tribe in ARK: Survival Evolved. What are your end-game plans? Are you running into trouble setting up? Leave your notes in the comments below!

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Autumn Fish
Autumn is a freelance writer that grew up on GameFAQs walkthroughs trying to suss out how to get through her favorite PC and Nintendo games. These days she's a capable game pioneer, mapping out guides and tips so players of all skill levels can join in on the fun.