Short-eared-dog attacking in combat in Survival: Fountain of Youth
Screenshot by GameSkinny

Survival: Fountain of Youth Full Combat Guide

Be ready to defend yourself!

The combat in Survival: Fountain of Youth can be tricky to get the hang of, but it’s a necessary skill to learn, whether you’re exploring the dangerous landscapes or looking for food for cooking. If you’re having trouble fighting animals, here are some tips to help you out.

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How to Fight in Survival: Fountain of Youth

There’s really no avoiding combat in this experience. Many threats around the map are looking to attack you as you explore or even as they come across you at your base. You’ll want to know how to fight, not only to defend yourself but also to hunt animals for food. These are the main aspects you’ll want to know about combat:

How to Find/Track Animals

You’ll want to pay close attention to your surroundings at all times. It’s essential to know how to look out for animals to avoid being attacked or to get the upper hand on your target. One of the best indications of an animal’s location is their sounds. If you listen closely, you’ll hear them before seeing them. Snakes will hiss, dogs will growl, birds will caw, etc. So, wear a nice headset and turn your volume up loud so you can hear anything close to you.

Another great way to find animals is to use the Concentration skill. With this skill unlocked, you can see things you aren’t normally able to see, like the outline of nearby items and animals. With enough skill, you can even see an animal’s footprints.

You can unlock the Concentration skill within the Character menu under Survival Skills. Using a Survival Point, earned through completing survival tasks or locating a chronicle, you can unlock different levels of the Concentration skill. The first level will allow you to start using the ability by pressing V on your keyboard. It will only last briefly, but you can keep reactivating it. The higher the skill you unlock, the more you can see.

Best Weapons to Use for Fighting in Survival: Fountain of Youth

Another important part of combat in Survival: Fountain of Youth is having the proper weapons. Now, you can use basic tools as weapons if you need to, like cutters or axes, but the items under the melee or ranged weapons categories will be more effective. There are plenty of weapon choices between the two categories, from spears to swords in melee and bows to guns in ranged. Melee weapons are a bit riskier to use since they require you to be up close and personal with your target. I would suggest using ranged not only for more protection but because they’re easier to hit targets with in general.

Guns are late-game weapons (unless you chose one from the starting items) that are highly effective, but I would recommend saving them for particularly difficult animals. You’re better off with a bow, crossbow, or spear for day-to-day hunting and exploring. Here are some recommendations to make and what you’ll need for them (if you haven’t progressed far enough and don’t have the right materials, backtrack to some previous versions of these weapons):

Obsidian SpearLong Stick
Iron Spear Iron
Long Stick
Weak BowLong Stick
Wooden BowBowstring
Native Bow Frame
Flexible Branches
Iron CrossbowIron
Flintlock GunIron
Pistol Base

Most weapons must be made on a Workbench, so ensure you have one placed down in your camp first. Then, interact with it to view the Crafting menu and build your weapon from there. I suggest using ranged weapons most of the time, but there are some weapons that are better suited for specific situations. Torches are best against scorpions and harpoons for exploring under the water.

All Combat Controls

Now that you have your weapons and know how to look out for animals, it’s time to get down to the basics of how to fight. Depending on if you’re using a melee or ranged weapon, the controls could vary.


When using a melee weapon, you’ll need to be in the range of the enemy to hit them. Then, press M1 to swing your weapon at them.

Survival: Fountain of Youth combat with melee weapon hitting shot-eared-dog
Screenshot by GameSkinny

Aiming for the head will do more damage than a body hit. Aim your shot by placing the two curved cursors over the animal. However, if you want your hit to be most effective, you’ll want to charge up your swing by holding M1 until the cursor meter fills up to the red. Then, release M1 to perform your attack.


For ranged weapons, the controls are pretty much the same, except you’ll add in the second mouse button to aim. When in range of a target, hold M2 to aim your cursors over them.

Aiming bow ranged weapon at short-eared-dog in Survival: Fountain of Youth
Screenshot by GameSkinny

After your cursors are aimed nicely over them, press M1 to shoot or throw your weapon. For most ranged weapons (similar to melee), you’ll want to charge up your aim before pressing the release button for full effectiveness.

How to Block

One of the most important parts of combat is knowing how to block. You’ll need to use it as often as you can to avoid taking damage from approaching animals. However, for it to be effective, you’ll need to time it perfectly.

You can only block an attack if you press M2 right as an animal attacks. The animal glows red to make it easier to figure out when that is. If timed correctly, an animation will trigger, showing you pushing the animal away from you. You’ll avoid taking damage by blocking, but keep in mind that if fighting multiple animals at once, you may not be able to block them all. That’s why it can be better to stay at a distance.

Timing block with short-eared-dog highlighted red in Survival: Fountain of Youth
Screenshot by GameSkinny

Now that you know the basics of combat, you can be prepared for anything coming your way. Of course, to be fully defended, ensure you also wear some clothes. They will negate some damage from any attacks that you aren’t able to block.

Want more helpful tips like this? Check out GameSkinny’s Survival: Fountain of Youth hub.

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Abby Smith
Abby Smith is a super nerd and video game fanatic who grew up playing games on a variety of platforms. Since graduating, she has worked in the online journalism field for over three years. She likes to spend her free time binge-watching Netflix, reading all genres of novels, and playing all the best new video games. She is currently a full-time Staff Writer for GameSkinny, and as an alumni from Full Sail University, also enjoys dabbling in creative writing such as short stories, scripts, and comics on the side.