Our first moments on H1Z1 saw us spawn into the game during the middle of the night, deep within a forest that featured creatures far more terrifying than a wandering zombie. Those evils didn't end up getting their paws on us, however; it was the other human beings (three of them, in fact) that led to our demise. Not three minutes into our first ever spawn in H1Z1 and we were killed during a four person fist fight in the middle of a dark forest. It was then that we knew we were in for a different kind of survival experience.

Our next two attempts really didn't get much better, but the fourth one was a keeper, seeing us stay alive for several hours while we roamed the map with our friends. Those first three deaths weren't for nothing though, we learned a lot of good tips and tricks along the way, some of which we're going to share with you in hopes that you can be the survivor that we couldn't in those early moments.

Discovery and Learning How to Craft

The crafting system built into H1Z1 is absolutely amazing, especially given that it's still so far from being the final build of the game. Where most crafting mechanics are either too complicated or not complicated enough, the developers at Sony Online Entertainment appear to have gotten it just right.

Crafting begins by picking up items around the world, opening your inventory, then clicking on the Discovery tab. From here you can drag items that are in your possession into one of the four empty slots. If the Discover button at the bottom is clickable you can learn a new recipe that will show up in the Crafting tab. Continue to add highlighted items in your inventory to the remaining three slots to learn even more complicated recipes.

Once you've learned how to craft something you can click on the Crafting tab, look under Recipes and click Craft on what you want to build. This will add the crafted item to your inventory, assuming of course you have the required materials.

Craft a Makeshift Bow

Most of our spawns haven't been terribly close to civilization, and that usually means you have a bit of time to craft yourself a few basic survival items, including the Makeshift Bow. It's not terribly effective at long ranges, but it will probably be enough to scare off fresh spawns who want to punch you out, or even for more legitimate uses, such as killing wild animals to keep you from starving to death.

To craft the Makeshift Bow, approach some bushes and press the E button on your keyboard to gather up some Wood Sticks. Don't be cheap here, snatch up 30 or 40 if you can, although you'll only need one for the Makeshift Bow itself. The only other item you'll need is a Scrap of Cloth, something that can be obtained by right clicking your t-shirt and choosing the option to Shred it.

With both of the required items in your inventory, learn the recipe for the Makeshift Bow using the Discovery tab, then switch over to the Crafting tab to actually build it.

The reason that we advised you to pick up all the extra Wood Sticks is because a Makeshift Bow is fairly useless without Arrows. To build some of these, drop a single Wood Stick into your Discovery tab, then pop over to the Crafting section and start pumping out two Arrows for every one Wood Stick. This should help to keep you alive for a few minutes at least.

Note: By tossing one Scrap of Cloth, one Spool of Twine and 2 Wood Sticks into your Discovery tab you can learn how to make the Wooden Bow, something that uses the same Arrows as the Makeshift Bow, but is far superior to it in every way. Search garbage bins outside houses to find the Spool of Twine.

Crafting the Bow Drill

This is quickly going to become one of the more useful items in the game given that it's reusable and can light Campfires to cook your venison or purify your water. In order to craft it you're going to need a Scrap of Cloth, Wood Stick and Wood Plank. If you've read the entire article you already know how to get your hands on the Wood Stick and Scrap of Cloth, but the Wood Plank can easily be obtained by smashing wooden crates with your fists. You should also be able to use a Hatchet on items that are made of wood.

Once you have all of the required materials, add them to your Discovery tab to learn the recipe, then get busy crafting. Once you have it, look at the Campfire and choose the option to use it, then toss the Bow Drill into its inventory. From here you can right click on the Bow Drill and choose the option to Ignite. Voila, you can now cook your meat and purify your water.

Respawning Loot

This will probably end up getting adjusted at some point, but right now you can take advantage of the way loot tends to respawn. For example, if you're hungry you can head out to one of the many campsites around the map, then look on the tables for cans of food. If you find a table that has some, eat it and then resume looting the area. After a few minutes you can return to the same table and most likely find a brand new can of food waiting for you. If you're hungry, this is a solid way to keep yourself from starving to death. We've also found that it works with items like Hatchets and other tools, although have we've yet to test it out with guns.

Press the V Key

It's a simple tip, but great zombie is it one that people need to learn, especially since having your hands raised is a sign of aggression in games like DayZ, and let's be honest, the player bases aren't all that different.

The moment you put your hands up in H1Z1 they will stay there until you're either holding another item, or you press the V on your keyboard to lower them. When you're meeting other players, putting your hands at your sides can help you gain just a little bit of trust, and that's something that very well could see you live through the encounter.

Just so the tip isn't too simple, you can press the Q key to push a zombies away if they get too close.

Be sure to keep a tab open and locked on Prima Games, and we'll be sure to keep pumping out the H1Z1 content in the weeks and months to come. For now, be sure to check out the video below made by our good friend, ChalkOne. This short tutorial is essential for anyone who is new to the game.