Playing on a survival PVP server in ARK: Survival Evolved can be difficult and even scary some times, especially if you want to take this seriously. You gotta think of a schedule and use some of that IRL time, so you can attend to your base, your loot, your tames and every little thing you hold precious. So if you lack free time, you might struggle to “feel safe” at first.
Some times you might have nightmares and wake up in the middle of the night hoping you aren’t raided or have your favorite dino killed! I gathered and listed some tips to ease that suffering and give you some ideas on how to defend your base efficiently, as well as ways to store your most precious loot in safety. These steps ensure that you will still have a chance to start from somewhere – and not from zero again – even if you get raided.
Also, keep in mind that no base is 100% raid-proof. Even the safest bases can only slow down the raiding process, thus giving you more time to log in the game and defend your belongings.
First of all, we have the towers, but before we go into it you should note that stone is the most common basic entry PVP structure, this means that thatch and wood are almost useless, as they can easily be destroyed by a lot of dinos, thus almost everything is preferably made with metal.
Below there is a tutorial by Kviden on how to build small or massive towers while showing a detailed summary of materials. Keep in mind that whatever you see here can be varied depending on your personal taste and how your base is built. You might want to make the large tower a bit taller than what the tutorial shows, or you might prefer Plant X turrets only, and this is totally ok.
Walls & Turrets
If you want a big base, you’re going to need walls. Especially if your base is out in the open, putting up walls is highly vital in order to defend your area. I bet you are wondering: who is going to defend the walls?
Here is where the turrets come in! Walls act the same as towers, which means you can place turrets on them with ceilings, catwalks, rooftops, basically any kind of platform that can snap on a wall. Just remember though, that the more turrets you have, the more irrigation/power/ammo will be needed, so plan accordingly.
Because making walls is a time-consuming process, which might be difficult at the start, we suggest you using stone walls in places where you keep the less-important loot of yours, and metal where it’s most needed. When you are ready, you can replace the stone walls with metal.
Below I linked two videos. The first one, created by Neroku, is showing a starter base and the following one, uploaded by ShaneTheShadow shows how you can upgrade your already existing base, after a lot of progress in the game.
Armored Plant X Species
Plant X Species is a turret based type of plants that slow enemies down and blind them. Unfortunately, they are really weak and can be destroyed easily. Ιn order to make them last, you need to protect them. Kamz 25 joyously shows us how to build one and where to get the seeds from, on the video linked below.
Keep in mind that the plants need to be irrigated in order to work and obviously they need fertilizer. You can use a Phiomia and force-feed it Stimberries and put the feces in a dung beetle for maximum efficiency, or you can just use a toilet to instantly get one fertilizer each time. Plant X Species are also some of the most low maintenance turrets you can get, so be sure to set those up first.
Build In Dense Forests & Hidden Areas
If you are a low profile, sneaky player, then the most recommended places are dense forests and hidden areas. Still, this could be quite challenging for beginners, since those places are mostly overrun by nasty dinos looking to devour you the first chance they get. That’s why getting some basic starter items and taming a Pteranodon is essential for finding these spots.
Don’t forget to build a small base, as it will not draw the attention of your enemies. The spots that are shown in the video below, created by SixShadows can certainly be used, but we suggest to use them as examples and find a place of your own. Many people have seen videos like this and already know where these areas are.
Obelisks & Supply Crates
Save space by uploading your most useful items and tames in Obelisks and Supply Crates, but keep in mind that there’s a time limit of the items that are stored in them. You can also upload your character to hop servers, but if you want to go to PVE it won’t happen. You can only go to another server with the same mode. So if you play PVP you can only change PVP servers and the same goes for PVE.
Crypods & Cryofridges
If you have tames, you don’t need at the moment, it’s suggested that you store them in Crypopods and then place them inside a Cryofridge, especially when they’re low level because tames in the Cryopods get faster EXP.
Note: Cryofridges require a Generator to work.
Here’s a video by TheFlamingBeerGaming showing how to upload your character and items, note that this also works with the supply crates, even though it is not shown in this video.
Tames that are in Cryopods get EXP, so you are basically creating a win-win situation, by saving space and getting more EXP, while staying well-protected. Check out the following video from Nooblets.com, to get a visual representation.
Build In Multiple Layers & Create Buffer Zones
One layer of structures does not seem to be enough? Fear not, because ARK allows you to build more layers, how does this even work you say? We don’t know it just…does!
In the video, you will see buffer chambers filled with traps, along with all the nice things that make the life of every raider harder. Don’t forget that there’s a structure limit, depending on the server, so it’s better to ask an admin always before you proceed to build anything.
Make Bait Structures
If you’ve seen in the video above, TimmyCarbine created a wall with one thatch foundation sticking out, and this is a good technique to fool more experienced players. They might make a quick assumption that you forgot to build your structure on a foundation. Since thatch is easily destroyed, and they take the bait and destroy it, well, you saw what happens!
Use Tames for Defense
The only thing alive and awake in your base, when you are not online, is your tames, and the game offers quite a good variety of monsters you can tame and use for defense.
The ones that are most effective on the outdoors are :
- Rock Elementals (Damage dealers/soakers, Stone throwing turrets)
- Velonosaurs (Rapid fire turrets low maintenance need only meat)
- Parasaurs (Can detect enemy players in turret mode)
- Raptors (Dangerous in numbers)
- T-Rexes (Just damage… a lot of damage)
- Inside the base, you will need smaller dinos like Dimorphodons, Troodons, Microraptors, and Dilophosaurs
Create or Find a Tribe
The more people the better, and when you have a tribe of 10+ people there’s a good chance some of those are online when you are not! That means your tribemates can protect your base even before enemy players try and raid the base, as most of the raids happen when you are offline. Make sure your tribemates are equipped with good items and let them keep an eye out every once in awhile, or even better set some shifts to ensure security.
Always be Well Equipped
It is more than obvious that you will need some really strong armor and good weapons to fend off raiders, so you need to find better blueprints for armor and weapons that give more protection and more damage.
Also important is that the armor even protects you while you sleep, although that’s not very viable since you will die very easily if someone raids you and see you sleeping, but you are sure safer from AOE attacks that happen while breaking in.
Nonetheless having better armor and a strong weapon can turn the tides and make you victorious in defending your base; if you happen to be online of course!
And this is our top tips for defending your base in ARK: Survival Evolved PVP.
Keep in mind that each server has different settings for example structure limit, special rules, PVP weekend only, etc. We highly suggest you do some research on your own and find by yourself what server fits your playstyle the most. Still, don’t get lost in all of that info, as the most important thing is to have fun and enjoy the game! Feel free to comment and discuss more PVP defense mechanics!