Island start and loving it (but damn we need some more love in the primitive department of items)

Wilderness start and I lucked out and started on an island. Enjoying the challenge of more difficult starts, an island was something I had been wanting to try for some time now, and I was quick to get to work.

I foraged every bush available, then waded across to an island which was very nearby and foraged every available bush there too. I broke up some young trees, pulled apart some pine trees then smashed a few small boulders with stout sticks.

Burning up an incredible amount of luck, I managed to find a small plastic bottle and aluminium can, though I was sorely disappointed to see that the game would not allow me to boil water (albeit ineffectively) in the latter.

Aside from this setback, I had a decent little pile of junk now. I knew my next options were to get some clay, in order to do this I would need a device which possessed cutting quality to make a digging tool. Knowing that my most realistic avenue was to find bone to craft a bone shiv, but not having found any bone, I was disappointed to then run into a reasonably solid ‘gate’ as far as cutting implements go, this deficiency spiralled out to a large section of items I was now barred from crafting.


Above is an image of some African flint stone tools, the crafting of these particular ones date back to around 8,500 - 6,500 years ago. So when I looked in my pile of gathered items and I saw I had flint stone, I was pretty disappointed to learn that I was unable to craft even the most simple cutting device with them.

The island also had some deer, so I quickly chased one down into the shallows and beat it to death with a wooden stick. Dragging its corpse back to my stash, I also found out that there was no way I was able to get bone out of it to make a shiv, nor could I (at the very least) throw its entire corpse onto a long stout stick to spin over a fire.

Yes… in what can only be described as bitterly cruel irony, I needed a device with cutting quality of 1 to perform even the most primitive destruction of the corpse, to obtain a bone so that I was able to make a device with a cutting quality of 1.


  1. It would be great if we were able to use aluminium cans to boil water (even if it was incredibly punishing by being slow to and ineffective to use).
  2. It would be great if we could make flint actually useful for something (namely cutting, similar to its useful qualities in primitive tech)
  3. It would be great if we could ‘construct’ a spit roast for primitive starts.

Sure, these 3 things would need to be very punishing to implement in order to deter their use for anything aside from an act of pure desperation, namely.

  1. Boiling water in a can could be very slow to boil in comparison to more ‘purpose built’ devices. This reflects water spillage, evaporation etc in the process of using it.

  2. Employing flint as a cutting device could burn up a chunk of time to knap into something useful. Low skill could end up with numerous failures in the form of smashed and useless ‘pebbles’. Once finished, performing any action with the sharpened flint could also burn up extra time in comparison to any less primitive device cementing their clear superiority in the game.

  3. A spit roast could take much time to ‘construct’ whilst also giving a reduction in food quantity/quality to also respect its gamestage and relative ease to deploy.

I hate to think that I would need to leave this island so soon, just to squander a silly bone from a random bush when I have such great resources sitting right at my feet.

If you want some inspiration as to primitive startups and making your own tools you could do worse than check out The Unreal World it’s a pseudo-historic roguelike set in a late Iron-age country based on Scandanavia / Norway etc.

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Do you have the MST mod? I’ve just started a no cities run myself and I’m fairly sure there is a primitive cutting tool available (I found a cabin which had knives in the kitchen so that was one primitive tool I didn’t need to make myself. My problems were:

A. A hammer - a stone hammer now takes 4 survival skill. I thought it had been removed from the game as I kept waiting for it to appear.

B. A screwdriver. This apparently takes metal. After hours and days and weeks of scavenging I had exactly 2 bits of scrap metal (need 10). Then I tripped over an abandoned car and smashed in its rear bumper. On the way home with that precious precious metal I spotted a desolate barn with an NPC who was keen as mustard to join up. He had a screwdriver in the pocket of his jeans…

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