Aska Beginner Tips: Survival and Tribe Building

Master Aska: Comprehensive beginner tips on resources, NPCs, and base defense.

Viking character gathering resources in the woods in Aska survival game
Image Credit: Cryptopolitan

Aska: Comprehensive Beginner Tips

Aska is a Viking survival game with tribe-building mechanics that distinguish it from other survival games like Valheim. While the early stages can be grind-heavy, developing your tribe and delegating tasks to NPCs can transform the late game into a more strategic, colony simulation experience. Here’s a detailed guide to help you get started in Aska, based on our initial hours in the early access version.

Collect Everything

Gathering resources is crucial in any survival game, but in Aska, it’s even more vital. Here’s what you should keep an eye out for:

  • Small rocks: These are easily found along the coastline but can also appear in the woods. They are essential for crafting basic tools and building structures.
  • Reeds: Found exclusively on the coastline, reeds are a primary source of Fiber. Fiber is necessary for crafting Rope, which is used in tools, weapons, and shelters.
  • Mussels: Also found only on the coastline, mussels are a good source of early-game food and can be collected from rocks.
  • Fruits and vegetables: These are found in the woods and provide essential nutrition. Look for berries, carrots, and other edible plants.
  • Bird nests: Located in the woods, bird nests are more common after storms. They often contain eggs, which are a valuable food source.
  • Sticks: You’ll need a lot of sticks for crafting and building. Harvest them from Dwarf Firs, which are abundant in the forest.
  • Flax for Fiber: Harvested from Flax Plants or derived from Bark and Thatch, Flax is another crucial source of Fiber.

You’ll need a substantial amount of Fiber, so focus on harvesting Reeds along the shoreline where you spawn. Gather small stones and mussels as well, as they are vital resources for crafting and sustenance.

Three essential tips for gathering:

  1. Scan the Area: Press ‘Z’ on your keyboard to scan the area. This highlights harvestable items, making it easier to spot resources.
  2. Break Down Reeds and Bark: Reeds and Bark can be processed into Fiber, allowing you to produce Rope without relying solely on Flax Plants.
  3. Forage at Night: Foraging at night might seem counterintuitive, but it’s actually beneficial in Aska. The ‘Z’ key highlights items more clearly against the dark background, making them easier to find in dense undergrowth.

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Food and Water Management

In the early game, your diet will primarily consist of berries, mussels, and vegetables. These items are easily foraged and provide essential nutrition and hydration.

Food Sources:

  • Berries: Berries are abundant and provide both nutrition and minimal hydration. They are a reliable food source in the early stages.
  • Mussels: Found along the coastline, mussels are another good early-game food source. They are easy to collect and can sustain you until you establish more stable food supplies.
  • Vegetables: Carrots and other vegetables found in the woods are excellent for maintaining your health and hunger levels.

Water Sources:

  • Natural Water Collectors: Look for small rocks with holes filled with rainwater. These can be found in the woods and are a crucial source of hydration. You can drink directly from these rocks or use them to fill your water canteen.
  • Base Location: Establish your base near a Natural Water Collector. Later, you can build a well on top of it, solving most of your water issues. This setup ensures a steady water supply for both you and your villagers.

Finding a flat spot of land for your base is advisable, as the game’s terraforming isn’t fully optimized. Uneven terrain can lead to aesthetic and functional issues with your buildings.

As your tribe grows, you can build a Gatherer’s Pit, which allows NPCs to forage for food. This will free you from the constant need to gather supplies and enable you to focus on other tasks. Additionally, you can establish a farm later in the game to provide a steady supply of food.

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Acquiring NPCs Quickly

Acquiring NPCs early on significantly improves your gameplay experience. Here’s how to get started:

  • Jotun Blood: Near the wrecked ship where you start, you’ll find five Jotun Blood in crates. This is enough to summon one villager using Odin’s Eye.
  • Crafting Odin’s Eye: To build Odin’s Eye, you’ll need to craft a Shelter and a Pickaxe to gather large stones. Once you have the necessary materials, place the Jotun Blood in the Eye and wait 10 real-time minutes for your first NPC to arrive. Assign them to a shelter and welcome your first companion.

Finding More Jotun Blood:

  • Jotun Blood Stones: These stones glow a pale blue and can be harvested with a pickaxe. Each stone yields between 1-5 Jotun Blood. As you progress, you’ll need to venture further from your base to find more stones.

Having NPCs early on allows you to delegate tasks, making the early game less grind-heavy and more manageable.

Managing Your NPCs

Effective management of NPCs is crucial for building a successful tribe in Aska. Here’s how to get started:

  • Woodcutter’s Pit: Start with the Woodcutter’s Pit to produce essential resources like Sticks, Long Sticks, Bark, and Fibers. These materials are necessary for crafting tools and building structures.
  • Set Fiber as a Priority: In the Woodcutter’s Pit, prioritize Fiber production by breaking down Bark. This ensures a steady supply of Fiber for crafting.
  • Workshop Pit: Once you set up the Workshop Pit, your NPC will likely need a constant supply of Fiber for crafting. Address this by ensuring Fiber production is prioritized.

Structure Priority:

  1. Woodcutter’s Pit
  2. Gatherer’s Pit
  3. Stonecutter’s Pit

Your NPCs will inform you of any issues, such as Storage Full problems. Reassign NPCs to different tasks as needed to address resource shortages and ensure smooth operations.

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Expanding NPC Zones with Markers

Markers are an inexpensive yet valuable tool for expanding the radius of your NPC zones. This expansion allows for:

  • Increased Foraging Range: Your foragers will cover more ground, gathering more food and resources.
  • Extended Woodcutting Area: Woodcutters will chop down more trees, providing a steady supply of wood.
  • Broader Stonecutting Area: Stonecutters will find more stones, essential for building and crafting.

Defending Your Base

In its current early access form, Aska includes periodic mob attacks on your base. The severity of these attacks depends on the number of villagers in your tribe:

  • Early Attacks: Initially, you’ll face minor threats from Smolkrs, which linger on the outskirts of your base.
  • Progressing Threats: As your tribe grows, you’ll encounter more significant threats like skeletal bruisers and rangers.

Building Defenses:

  • Villager Complaints: Your villagers will frequently complain about the lack of base defenses. Address this by building defensive structures, although they are resource-intensive and challenging to establish early on.
  • NPC Self-Defense: NPCs will defend themselves during attacks. You can also train them at the Barracks or Archery to improve their combat skills over time.

Key Defense Tips:

  • Start Early: Begin building defenses as soon as you have the resources to ensure your base is protected.
  • Train NPCs: Regularly train your NPCs to enhance their combat abilities, making them more effective in defending the base.
  • Prioritize Essential Defenses: Focus on building essential defensive structures first, such as walls and watchtowers, to provide a basic level of protection.

Advanced Tips for a Successful Tribe

As you progress in Aska, you’ll encounter more complex challenges. Here are some advanced tips to ensure your tribe’s success:

  • Resource Management: Efficiently manage resources by setting priorities and delegating tasks to NPCs. Regularly monitor resource levels and adjust assignments as needed.
  • Building Upgrades: Invest in upgrading your buildings to improve their efficiency and capacity. Upgraded buildings provide better resources and allow for more advanced crafting.
  • Exploration: Regularly explore new areas to find valuable resources and expand your territory. Exploration is essential for finding rare materials and discovering new locations.
  • Community Management: Keep your villagers happy by providing adequate shelter, food, and water. Happy villagers are more productive and contribute to the tribe’s success.
  • Strategic Planning: Plan your tribe’s growth and expansion strategically. Consider the placement of buildings, resource allocation, and defense strategies to ensure sustainable development.

By following these tips, you’ll be well-prepared to start your journey in Aska and build a thriving Viking tribe. The game’s complexity and depth provide a rewarding experience as you navigate the challenges of survival, resource management, and community building. Embrace the adventure and enjoy the process of transforming your tribe from humble beginnings into a powerful Viking settlement.

FAQs for Aska: Beginner Tips

1. What is Aska and how does it compare to other survival games?

Aska is a Viking survival game that combines elements of survival crafting and colony simulation. It is similar to Valheim but introduces tribe-building mechanics, which transform the late-game experience into more of a colony simulator. This makes it unique, as you can delegate tasks to NPCs and focus on strategic planning and resource management.

2. What are the essential resources to gather in the early game?

In the early stages, focus on collecting the following resources:

  • Small rocks: Found along the coastline and in the woods.
  • Reeds: Located on the coastline, essential for Fiber production.
  • Mussels: Found on the coastline, providing early food.
  • Fruits and vegetables: Located in the woods, necessary for sustenance.
  • Bird nests: Found in the woods, often after storms.
  • Sticks: Harvested from Dwarf Firs, crucial for crafting.
  • Flax for Fiber: Harvested from Flax Plants or derived from Bark and Thatch.

3. How do I gather resources more efficiently?

To gather resources more efficiently:

  • Press ‘Z’ to scan the area: This highlights harvestable items.
  • Break down Reeds and Bark: These can be processed into Fiber.
  • Forage at night: The ‘Z’ key highlights items better at night, making them easier to find.

4. What should I do for food and water in the early game?

For early sustenance:

  • Berries and mussels: Easily foraged and provide essential nutrition.
  • Vegetables: Carrots and other vegetables found in the woods.
  • Natural Water Collectors: Small rocks with rainwater found in the woods. Drink directly or fill your canteen.

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5. How do I establish my base?

  • Choose a flat spot: The game’s terraforming isn’t fully optimized, so flat land is ideal.
  • Near Natural Water Collectors: This ensures a steady water supply for you and your villagers. You can build a well on top of it later.

6. How do I acquire NPCs quickly?

  • Find Jotun Blood: There are five Jotun Blood in crates near the wrecked ship where you start.
  • Craft Odin’s Eye: Use Jotun Blood to summon villagers. You’ll need a Shelter and Pickaxe to gather large stones for this.
  • Locate Jotun Blood Stones: These glow pale blue and yield 1-5 Jotun Blood each. Venture further from your base to find more as you progress.

7. How should I manage my NPCs?

  • Start with the Woodcutter’s Pit: Produce Sticks, Long Sticks, Bark, and Fibers.
  • Prioritize Fiber production: In the Woodcutter’s Pit to ensure a steady supply.
  • Set up the Workshop Pit: Address Fiber shortages by prioritizing Fiber production.

Structure Priority:

  1. Woodcutter’s Pit
  2. Gatherer’s Pit
  3. Stonecutter’s Pit

8. What are markers and why are they important?

Markers are inexpensive and expand the radius of your NPC zones. This means:

  • Foragers: Will cover more ground, gathering more food.
  • Woodcutters: Will chop down more trees.
  • Stonecutters: Will find more stones.

9. How do I defend my base?

  • Early Attacks: Initially face minor threats like Smolkrs.
  • Progressing Threats: Encounter skeletal bruisers and rangers as your tribe grows.
  • Build Defenses: Start building defensive structures early on. Train NPCs at Barracks or Archery to improve their combat skills.
  • Villager Complaints: Address complaints about the lack of defenses by constructing resource-intensive defensive structures.

10. Any advanced tips for succeeding in Aska?

  • Resource Management: Efficiently manage and prioritize resources.
  • Building Upgrades: Upgrade buildings to improve efficiency.
  • Exploration: Regularly explore for valuable resources and new locations.
  • Community Management: Keep villagers happy with adequate shelter, food, and water.
  • Strategic Planning: Plan your tribe’s growth and expansion carefully for sustainable development.

By following these tips and strategies, you’ll be well-prepared to navigate the challenges of Aska and build a thriving Viking tribe. Enjoy the journey and embrace the adventure!

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