This guide will get you started in your first day of 7 Days to Die. It is brief, as intended. There are other, far more in depth, guides. Unfortunately, they can be overwhelming to brand new players. Our goal is to get you through your first day. After you have reviewed the instructions here you can proceed to the Beginners Guide and see more in-depth instructions.
Regardless of the difficulty setting or other settings, you need to gather materials to survive. You'll immediately want to gather the materials for your first Quests to gain the 4 points toward leveling up your character. Pay attention material needed to complete the Quest in the top right corner. Harvest as much resources and craft any weapons you can. Place weapons or tools in your Toolbelt to use. Any attacks you perform will drain your Stamina especially Power Attacks.
Nights are very dangerous. Before the sun begin to set you must decide on a temporary house or store to stay inside at night. Be prepared to fight as clearing out any Zombies during the day is the best option. At night be sure to crouch when necessary to limit noise. Use limited lighting as Zombies can see it from outside.
If you're not running from zombies, you'll be creating tools, weapons, and building materials. Even while you're running, you'll be gathering and looting resources for tools, weapons, and food.
Your hands are the weakest tool of all. Start by punching Grass and dead shrubs with Left Click to get Plant Fibers and Wood. Also, collect any Small Stones that are laying on the ground by pressing E while looking at it. All three of these resources can be combined to craft a Stone Axe (by using the crafting section of the inventory, defaults to Tab). This tool will make gathering much quicker. It can be used by equipping it to any slot of the hotbar (a.k.a. Toolbelt) and then selecting it from there.
The Stone Axe can be used for a variety of tasks, such as chopping down trees for Wood. Although it will wear down quickly, it can be repaired by combining it with Small Stones in the crafting window. As an advanced topic for later, you can keep an eye on the Quality of the item - save and repair the Stone Axe you've found with the highest quality, use the others until they break. At level 1 you can only make a stone axe with a quality of 1, which is how it will stay until you level up the skill Miner 69'r. The Stone Axe can also be used to break large boulders. This will yield many Small Stones. The stone axe is a rather ineffective weapon, but it can also be used to upgrade blocks if you have the proper materials. (Defaults to right click.)
A Wooden Club is an easily crafted weapon to use in the early stages of the game. It's not recommended to get within arm's length of a zombie on Day 1. A Wooden Bow and Stone Arrows may be a better weapon choice when starting out. The items needed are Wood, Small Stones, and Feathers. Feathers can be found in Bird Nests, Abandoned Rubbish, and Small Trash Bins. There are several different classes of weapons you can spec into, but that's better saved for later when you're more established. You can inflict more damage with a Power Attack, initiated with Right Click. However, Power Attacks use considerably more stamina than normal attacks.
The Stone Spear will allow you to create distance between you and any Zombies with just the standard attack. The Power Attack will toss the Stone Spear into any enemies. You will have to retrieve it after Power Attacks.
With the bow in hand, click 'R' to load an Stone Arrow from the inventory. Hold left click to draw the arrow back. Release to fire. Depending on the difficulty, it could take many arrows to take down a zombie. The 'Ctrl' button allows sneaking (crouching) and if a zombie is shot while crouching and the zombie is unaware of said player, a 2x damage modifier is applied. Always aim for the head!
Eating and drinking are essential. Monitor your Be sure to scavenge enough food and drink to keep hunger and thirst at decent levels. Do not eat bad food or drink bad (murky) water unless absolutely necessary, as you may become sick.
- During the day, zombies are slow. Regardless, if they hit you, there's a high chance you'll be stunned, allowing them to hit you continuously. This is why it is important to keep your distance.
- Stay indoors at night. Zombies at night will sprint to attack you and there are more of them as well. While indoors if you hear foot steps outside immediately crouch to enter stealth mode and they may or may not leave.
- Torch light will attract attention. Also the heat of too many Torches will create heat that attracts Zombies
- Crouching can be beneficial at night or looting or avoiding dangerous animals known to attack or while hunting other animals. Crouching success rate will vary depending on the situation.
- Zombies can hear. Everything you do in this game is noisy. They can even hear you open your inventory. Stepping on garbage on the floor. Broken Glass is hard to see and can easily alert Zombies. They will dig in an attempt to get to their prey, so it's best to remain as quiet as possible.
- Stamina is directly related to damage output. This applies to weapons and tools. Depleted stamina equals lower efficiency.
- Choose a location as a base. It can be a house or a business location. Placing your Land Claim Block will keep your base safe from Zombies respawning inside if you decide to keep the base as a permanent location. Desert locations tend to have a lot of foot traffic and is not recommended.
- Lay your bed in your base. Otherwise should you die at night you spawn in a random location with no gear.