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Metal Gear Survive guide: Avoiding hunger and thirst

Keeping hydrated in a desert world


Early in Metal Gear Survive, your biggest struggle will be running out of food and water. Eventually, it’ll be easy to satiate both, but not for several hours and after several missions in the single-player campaign. This guide aims to teach you how to keep hunger and thirst at bay.

Life, stamina and the regeneration limit

Hunger and thirst have negative effects on your character. Your maximum life regeneration limit will decrease as your hunger increases. The same is true for thirst, but with stamina instead. Until you eat or drink something, these will only regenerate up to the red line on your life and stamina bars.

Your life and stamina bars and the red regeneration limit indicator

In the screenshot above, our character’s life bar is full. If we took damage, it’d fully regenerate to the entire length of the bar. Our stamina, however, isn’t full. If we drained our stamina to the left of the vertical red line (the regeneration limit), it’d only regenerate (or refill) up to that red line.

To refill your life meter and raise the regeneration limit, eat. To refill your stamina meter and raise the regeneration limit, drink.

Hunting and foraging

You need to get good at hunting and foraging in Metal Gear Survive or you’ll starve to death. Don’t worry though: This doesn’t entail being accurate or sneaky. Instead, being a good hunter in Metal Gear Survive is about being on the lookout at all times. If you see an animal walking around, no matter how small, hunt that sucker down and make it lunch.

Finding plants

Pick up every plant you find. Some of it is food. You can find black carrots north of your base camp. You can often find wildberries along the edges of puddled, dirty water. Check out the gallery above to see what you’re looking for and where you can find some on the map.


You’ll come across packs of animals fairly frequently in Metal Gear Survive, though animals don’t seem to hang out in the dust where you need an oxygen mask. So when you’re in a clear zone, scout for critters.

When you find animals or edible plants, use your map’s stamp feature to mark and remember the location. Animals and plants respawn, allowing you to return, hunt and forage. Try and create a hunting route that you can follow as animals begin to reappear. Finish a mission? Go out again to check in on the packs of animals close to your base.

Place pins on your map to mark the location of plants and animals

If perishable items sit in your inventory for too long, it’ll spoil and become poisonous. Eating poisoned food could make you sick. To get rid of sickness, you’ll need to sleep or take some medication.

To prevent starving in Metal Gear Survive, remain vigilant. Find animals as you do missions and mark your map to make sure you can find them again. Your future self will thank you for it.



Once you have your meat, take it back to base camp and use the campfire. Here, you can cook raw meat, which eliminates the chance of infection.

Make sure that you’re efficient. Eating meat raw is a waste, and you should only do it in an emergency. It also seems like raw meat will spoil (thus becoming poisonous) faster than cooked meals will.

As you level up your base camp, you’ll have access to more recipes. After completing several single-player missions, you’ll be able to craft a campfire and hanging pot where you can cook meals. You can even combine meat with water to make soup, quenching your thirst and hunger at the same time.

Finding water

Unlike food, water is easy to find. However, it isn’t exactly the kind of stuff Fiji likes to bottle. No, this is dirty water. Drinking dirty water has a chance to make you sick, causing you to uncontrollably vomit. You can fix this with the cure menu or by sleeping, just like you can with food poisoning.

For the first several hours of Metal Gear Survive, your best bet is just to drink and hope that you don’t get poisoned. Our testing implies that drinking a bottle at a time is safer than chugging bottle after bottle. The latter seems to have a higher chance of leading to infection.

You have to drink water, but drink it sparingly. If you let your stamina run low and chug several bottles of dirty water, you’re likely to regret it. Instead, keep an eye on your stamina bar’s regeneration meter, and drink a bottle at a time before your stamina runs low.

You can find dirty water in lots of places. If you come across a pond, fill up the bottles you have (and mark the location with a stamp on your map). You can also find tons of dirty water clogged up in sinks when you roll through bases.

While it may sound hopeless, dirty water isn’t your only hydrating option in the early game of Metal Gear Survive. However, it’s your most reliable. Although it’s rare, you can find clean water when scavenging. Be sure to grab everything off of every shelf as you explore. The next time you’re thirsty, you may just find you have more clean water than you thought.

Cleaning water


After claiming the digger and defending your base for the first time (several hours and missions into Metal Gear Survive), you’ll unlock more crafting options for your home base. Craft a campfire and hanging pot. You’ll now be able to boil your dirty water thanks to this extreme advance in technology.

Cooking the germs out of the water will turn your dirty water into clean water. However, this means that you need to carry dirty water back to your base before you drink it. (Though you can also craft rainwater tanks at your home base, which will collect water.) Make sure you have plenty of clean water before you leave the camp. Once you get the pot, water essentially becomes a non-issue.


Several hours and single-player missions into Metal Gear Survive, you’ll gain opportunities to build farms in your base. You can start with potatoes and eventually work up to onions and corn. Farms aren’t great for keeping you fed, but they take next to no effort. The survivors that you rescue will tend to the farm for you.

You need the farms to keep your team fed, but you can also benefit from them. After some time has passed, you can walk up to a farm and collect some of its harvest. You can cook these to make small or even elaborate meals depending on the resources you have.

There are also water purifiers and water collectors to build. These are essentially water farms. Over time they will collect water for you, although the output will be dirty. However, water purifiers (which require far more rare, electronic parts to craft) will allow you to collect drinkable water directly from them.

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