Getting Started

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Welcome to Eco. Thank you for supporting the game!

This guide is meant as an introduction for players who are brand new to the game. Keep in mind that the game is under active development and aspects of the game are constantly changing. The pages this guide links to may not contain up-to-date information.

FAQ's[edit | edit source]

System Requirements[edit | edit source]

Main article: System Requirements

NOTE: If you are going to play a Single Player game or host your own MP from your client, it is recommended to have at least .net 4.6.2 or higher. You can download .net 4.6.2 from here

Starting the Game[edit | edit source]

Eco must be played on a server. You can join a public server or choose to generate your own server and play by yourself or with a select group of friends.

Since Eco has a strong focus on cooperation, it's a good idea to find a popular server with an active community. Eco features a server browser, so you can easily try different servers.

Use the following community resources to meet fellow Eco players and find a group to play with:

Game Menu[edit | edit source]

By pressing "ESC" you will bring up the game menu UI. This contains all the graphics/video/gameplay/keybind options. To read more see Game Menu.

Game Modes[edit | edit source]

Upon starting up Eco, you can click "New Game" to see a list of servers at various levels of progress and starting conditions. The game displays the best matches for you based on latency, player activity, and other factors. You may also browse the full server list by clicking "Browse All" in the top right.

If you'd like to play solo or with a private group, click the blue arrow on the right until you see "Host a Private World".

Collaboration[edit | edit source]

This option affects the skill point cost of choosing multiple specialties. A server with a higher collaboration will have higher skill point costs for each new specialty chosen, reducing the number of skills a single player can obtain. The first specialty always costs 0 SP and the cost for new specialties will not increase after the 7th specialty acquired. The values for each new specialty under the different collaboration settings are:

No Collaboration (1-3 players) Low Collaboration (3-10 players) Medium Collaboration (10-30 players) High Collaboration (30+ players)
0, 2, 6, 30, 75, 150, 240 0, 3, 12, 60, 150, 300, 480 0, 5, 20, 100, 250, 500, 800 0, 7, 28, 140, 350, 700, 1120

Allow Friends to Join[edit | edit source]

This setting increases the maximum player cap on your world, allowing friends to join.

Generate New World[edit | edit source]

If this option is not selected, the game will use the default world. If it is selected, a new world will be procedurally generated. This will take some time, which varies depending on your computer hardware.

Join[edit | edit source]

This option will bring up a public server list. Collaboration settings for each world are displayed as "Very Low" to "High" specialization.

Manually Starting a Server[edit | edit source]

You can also go into the Eco game folder and manually start a server by opening EcoServer.exe. This will open the server GUI and give you much more control over the server settings. This local server will show up on the in-game server browser.

Entering the game[edit | edit source]

Upon entering the game, you'll be presented with the avatar editor. Choose how you look and hit Save. You can always change your appearance later.

When you first enter the game, you will be in UI Mode. This makes the mouse cursor visible, so use the mouse to click on the menu bar and open the chat log, backpack and world map. Press Tab to deactivate UI mode and use the mouse to look around.

If the menus are too large or too small, hit Esc to bring up the Game Menu and move the Interface Scale slider. If your game is moving slowly, you can also reduce draw distance and graphics quality through this window.

Now, familiarize yourself with the user interface:

Tutorial[edit | edit source]

After creating your avatar you will be greeted by the tutorial system in the top left corner of your screen. This interactive system will help you get familiar with the controls and first few beginner tasks within the world.

Tutorial Menu.png

The tutorial system will be the most up to date guide to follow for those who are new. As you complete the tutorial tasks, players will be rewarded in-game with tools and items. These rewards will help you on your journey and help you progress within the tutorial as you learn and explore more of the world.

Skill Points Panel[edit | edit source]

Nutrition Panel.png

  1. Nutrients — Reflects your current nutrient balance, which affects skill points gained per day. Hover over the pie chart for more nutrition details, Calories, and to see the contents of your stomach.
  2. Skill Points — The number reflects the current skill points. Click on the number to open the skills menu.
  3. Housing — Reflects your current housing bonus and passive skill point boost every day. Once you have a house, a pie chart similar to the nutrition chart will appear here.

Toolbar[edit | edit source]


  1. Hand contents — Some items are too heavy to put in your backpack, and must be carried either with a tool or in your hands.
  2. Quick access items — Use the 1 to 0 buttons on your keyboard or use the mouse scroll wheel to select an item.

Menu Bar[edit | edit source]

Menu Bar.png

  1. Weight — how much weight you can carry. If this limit is reached, you can't add any more items to your backpack.
  2. Navigation Bar - shows coordinates and facing direction.
  3. Graphs — opens the web interface in a browser window outside the game that shows graphs and statistics about the world
  4. Chat window (Hotkey:C) — opens the chat log, which also includes information about the world and its ecosystem
  5. Backpack (Hotkey:B) — opens your inventory
  6. Objectives (Hotkey:O) - opens objectives panel, showing the stated objectives and other activities of citizens.
  7. Economy (Hotkey:Y) - displays the player-run economy across the world
  8. Laws (Hotkey:L) — opens a browser window outside the game that shows the current laws
  9. World map (Hotkey:M) — opens a real-time map of the world, showing terrain, resources, players and land plots

Controls[edit | edit source]

  • W,A,S,D: Move forward, left, back and right
  • Space: Jump / Rise to surface (while in water)
  • Left Ctrl: Dive (while in water)
  • E: Use object
  • Tab: Toggle UI Mode
  • Enter: Open chat / Send message
  • Esc: UI Mode / Game Menu
  • Left mouse button: Tool action
  • Right mouse button: Place Item / Use Item
  • R (while placing object): Rotate item left
  • Q (while placing object): Rotate Item Right
  • Shift + Left Mouse button: Split item stack
  • Alt + Z: Toggle interface/HUD

Chat Commands[edit | edit source]

Type "/help" to see a list of chat commands available. If you started your own server, you will have a wide array of admin and developer commands available. Regular users have fewer commands.

See also: Chat Commands

First Priorities[edit | edit source]

Friends[edit | edit source]

Eco is designed as a cooperative game, and working with other players is far more effective than blazing a path on your own. If there are other players on the server, hit Enter and say hello. Find the other players on the map and head towards them. Usually, you will want to establish your base around other players’ bases.

If you’re alone, don’t worry! The game can also be played solo.

Skills[edit | edit source]

On the bottom left of your screen, you can see how many skill points you have. Click on your skill points number or hit Z. This will bring up the skills menu. Notice that there are 3 columns that represent, from left to right, professions, specialties, and skills. Click on the Survivalist profession and the Self Improvement specialty.

Skill Tree.png

The way you spend your initial skill points depends on if you are playing solo or with others. If you have a group, players can focus on specializing, becoming more efficient at certain tasks. If you're solo, you may have to end up waiting around for skill points. Skill points accumulate slowly over time, when you are online and offline.

Try clicking on the other professions in the left-most panel. (You may click "show all" in the bottom left corner to see all available professions) This will show the available specialties in each profession and how many skill points are needed to learn them. With each specialty you learn, it will increase the cost of learning further specialties exponentially. When playing with a group, it may be best to look at the objectives panel to familiarize yourself with what specialties others have chosen to learn. You should add your chosen specialties to this window once you have learned them. Here are some important specialties that should be acquired early on.

  • Hewing — Greatly increases efficiency of crafting Hewn Logs, the first building material.
  • Campfire — Allows you to cook raw food, increasing its calorie and nutrient content.
  • Gathering — Increases yield when gathering food and seeds, including tree seeds (important for reforestation).
  • Hunting — Grants a Bow and Arrows, allowing you to kill animals and harvest meat (important for improving protein intake).

Food[edit | edit source]

A field of camas. Harvest it using the shovel

Now it's time to get moving. You will want to find food and eat it as soon as possible. Corn, Beets and Camas can be found in open areas. Huckleberries and Beans can be found in forests. Simply target these plants and press E to gather these foods. Camas, a purple flower, requires a shovel to harvest. Right click on the foods in your inventory or toolbar to eat them. Do not eat the seeds.

You will notice your nutrient balance change, along with your daily skill point gain. To increase the rate that you gain skill points, you will need to eat nutritious food and keep the balance of the four nutrients – carbohydrates, fat, protein, and vitamins – relatively even. Players with the Chef profession can cook food to make it more nutritious, increasing skill gain.

See also: Food, Skill Points

Crafting and Storage[edit | edit source]

Using the axe to chop a tree into logs

Select a home site that has a decent amount of trees around and some exposed Stone nearby (HINT: go to the Map and look for gray patches). You can also look at the Map (M) and view world layers to see which areas are suitable for growing certain plants, if you want to be a farmer.

Once you've settled on a site, move your Workbench to your toolbar and select it. You should have acquired one through the tutorial. Press E or Q to rotate the Workbench, and the right mouse button to place it. Press E to access your workbench. Crafting stations like the workbench have crafting, status, storage, and auth tabs. If the Workbench is not functional, the status tab will tell you why. The storage tab will show all the linked storage connected to the Workbench. The auth tab will let you manage who can craft on the crafting station.

Find a tree and begin hitting it with an axe. Notice how your nutrition pie chart shrinks with each swing. This is your calorie count decreasing. Once it reaches zero, skill gain will become slower and you will be unable to perform many actions.

Eventually, the tree will fall. Use the axe to break off any limbs remaining on the tree. Now you will be able to divide the tree into manageable pieces. Much like other terrain blocks (such as dirt, stone or sand), logs are carried in your hands rather than in your inventory. You can carry up to 20 logs at a time. Press E on the logs to gather them.

Carry the Logs to your Workbench and order a Stockpile. Stockpiles are used to store block items, such as Logs and Dirt, which take up space in the game world. Once the Stockpile is done, collect it from the Crafting tab of the Workbench and place it nearby. It requires a clear 5x5 area. Now, you can right click on the Stockpile to store your Logs there. The Workbench and the Stockpile should now be linked, so any crafting on the Workbench will use resources from the Stockpile. Storage objects and crafting stations must be within 10 blocks of each other to be linked.

You can also level up Basic Crafting to level 1 and craft a Storage Chest. Place the chest near the Workbench, and it will be linked. Now, the items crafted at the Workbench will show up in the chest.

You can change the name of most storage, tables and vehicles to easily distinguish between them while a storage window is open. To do this, directly access the object you want to change and click the pencil icon on the top left of the window.

Enable/Disable linked storage for crafting by checking the checkbox to the left of each storage. Order here matters because the first in the list will be retrieved from or deposited to with crafting. By dragging the name bar you can re-order these how you like. Clicking the name bar of any storage will toggle the compact view of the storage display for easier viewing.

See also: Storage

If you or a friend has leveled up the Campfire specialty, you'll want to craft a Campfire at the Workbench to cook your food. To do this, you'll need Stone. Go find a block of exposed Stone and use your pickaxe on it. It will break into rubble, allowing you to pick it up. Break up the larger pieces further with your pickaxe. You can carry 20 Stone at a time and it can be stored in a Stockpile.

Shelter[edit | edit source]

Shelters can be built out of many different materials. In Eco, the material used to build the shelter determines what crafting stations can be used inside it. Your first house should be built from Hewn Logs.

Queue up some Hewn Logs at the Workbench. Having a player with Hewn Log Processing Efficiency craft the Hewn Logs will substantially decrease the amount of Logs needed to build your house.

The Hewn Logs will show up in your Stockpile. To use them for building, carry them in your hands and equip the Stone Hammer, which is acquired through the tutorial. Hold Shift and use the mouse scroll wheel to select the block type. You can only craft regular Hewn Log blocks or walls right now, but the Wood Construction specialty will unlock more options, such as stairs and roofs. A new player will likely need to build their first ceiling out of regular Hewn Log blocks (or potentially dirt), walls do not lay flat and Hewn Logs placed without the hammer do not count as a block.

To begin placing and working with other crafting stations, and to get a housing skill bonus, your house must be quite large. Most crafting stations take up 25m3, and this only counts interior space. Try to make your first room big enough so there is at least 75m3 of interior space. You will need to harvest several trees to make a suitable house.

If you want to stake a claim on your plot of land, use the Land Claim Stake in your inventory and place one in your house. Each claim will use a Land Claim Paper from your inventory and claim a 5x5 plot of a pre-defined grid. With your Land Claim Stake selected, you can see your current claims, the area you will be claiming, and other players' claims. Zoom in on the Map to get a clear picture of property claims. When a plot has been claimed, a deed will be created which define the property's name, color and auth. While holding your Land Claim Stake and looking at your claim, press `E` to open the deed management window.

Once you have crafted a Carpentry Table, players with the Hewing specialty can start making furniture such as the Chair and Table. Placing furniture in a house will add to a player's housing skill bonus. Like nutrition, the rooms of the house must be balanced according to the 5 room types: Living room, kitchen, bedroom, bathroom, and general room.

See also: Housing

Research[edit | edit source]

Now that you’ve mastered the basics of Eco, you’ll want to begin researching new technologies. To do this, you need to craft a Research Table at the workbench. This requires a lot of Logs, Stone and Plant Fibers. Plant Fibers are harvested by using a scythe on grass.

At a research table, you can craft skill books, which will allow you to unlock new skill trees. Each book requires a large amount of materials, but one book can spawn an infinite number of skill scrolls, which players use to unlock the skill. Therefore, in theory, only one of each skill book is needed for an entire server of players.

See also: Research

Further progression[edit | edit source]

As players progress in technology, roads and vehicles become vital for moving the large amounts of resources and materials necessary for building projects and research. Teamwork becomes even more important; since more skill points are required to gain necessary skills, players will be forced to specialize.

And, as technology increases, so does pollution. Burning wood and coal will increase greenhouse gases, potentially triggering sea level rise. Deforestation can devastate flora and fauna. Smelting byproducts can contaminate soil and water. Looking at the graphs from your server can illustrate these changes. Players can pass laws restricting certain activities if the world is at risk.

The goal of your gameplay in Eco varies from server to server. In some servers, players have a limited time to progress in technology enough to be able to destroy a meteor that is bearing down on the planet. In other servers, the gameplay is more casual.

The number one goal, of course, is to have fun and enjoy the game!

Tips & Tricks[edit | edit source]

  • If you ever get stuck in the world and can't move, type "/unstuck" in chat.
  • To pick up any crafting station (such as the Workbench) or other object, use a Stone Hammer, which is acquired through the tutorial.
  • Stumps can be destroyed with an axe.
  • You can take items from a workbench or container without opening its inventory. Use a tool, like the axe, to hit the object, and the first item in its inventory will be added to your backpack. Use the shovel on the object, and the first item that is carried by the shovel (e.g. dirt) will be picked up.
  • Coal can be used in Campfires at the beginning of the game. It burns longer than Logs do. You can burn other wood items such as boards or arrows as well.
  • You can hold the E key to pick up logs, stones, etc.

Further Reading[edit | edit source]

Other resources[edit | edit source]