An extremely bloody version of the Hunger Games is now available for us all to experience (virtually, fortunately) in The Culling, a surprisingly good, addictive and challenging first person survival game that has just been released on Steam. I will spare you the details, since you probably already know about this game and instead I will focus on today’s topic: the best tips and strategies for The Culling that will help you win your matches and get the most out of each round.

Because, yes, there is a bit more to this game than what the tutorial teaches you and you can definitely last a lot more than just a few minutes – my record after several games was 3 minutes and I was starting to think that I was just horrible at this game. But then I started to think strategically, to consider all the options in the game, think about crafting, think about stealth and a few hours later I got my first top three finish. Now, after winning some battles and getting past the 10 minutes mark constantly, I am here to share with you some The Culling tips and strategies that will definitely help you win more often (or at least stay alive for a lot longer).

1. First of all, and one of the most important things, know the playground. At the moment of writing this guide, there is just one map where you can play and knowing where everything is helps you a lot. Below you have a map created by reddit user pvtjace here. Study it and be thankful that it exists. Knowing where everything is (and where you are when you start the game) gives you an advantage:

01 the culling map

2. Choose your perks carefully. I will write a more in depth article on The Culling perks and what the best choices/loadouts are, but until then don’t forget that they are extremely important. Different playing strategies require different perks, but I had great success with Stealthy (being silent is an incredible bonus in the game and you should always have this), Bloodbath (if you don’t plan on trying to be an exclusively ranged fighter) and Ol’ Painless (since you will be causing more damage with your melee weapons). Another great combo was Backpacker, Armorer and Tough Mother, but I would consider this better suited for somewhat advanced players who know they will last a lot in the game. Either way, go for the massive boost perks and combine them with your playing strategy to max out your character.

3. What you do as soon as the game starts is extremely important as well. You only have two options: run to the nearest building and loot everything you find there, but there’s usually a risk involved as other players that use option #2 will arrive a bit later and they might be better equipped (so if you use this strategy, it’s all luck based, depending on what loot you find). The second strategy and what I would recommend you to do is to start crafting a spear (you need two rocks to make s knife, then knife and stick will make the spear). Don’t forget that you can actually hit the trees/stones in order to get materials. Even better, try to go for a blowgun too (it takes longer to build, but if you manage to get it, you’re all set!) As soon as you have these items, go to the nearest building and hopefully you’ll find somebody there to destroy and loot for found goodies.

I think that option number two works best because normally you will be fast enough with the crafting to get to the building (especially if it’s a large one) before some player leaves and since you will most likely have the better weapons (use the blowgun first, then charge with the spear), you will kill that player and get all the loot – hopefully some bandages as well. If you can’t do that, you might have a slight disadvantage since there will be no loot left, but it’s still not the end of the world and you will still get some eventually. Go for strategy #2 if you haven’t tried it already and you’ll see that it works way better!

4. Learn how to fight and master the three elements: attacking, blocking and pushing. The most important thing here is to read your opponent and see how they play: some block more (then you should push more) while some push more and hit, when you should block and counterattack. You will rarely have enough time, when sporting a melee weapon, to go for a fully charged shot, so attack using the basic attacks. Ideally, shoot your opponent from afar first, then rush into him and start fighting. Spears and longer weapons are great, but bleeding damage is also amazing.

Another good strategy is to attack and throw your spear at the enemy (if you are sure you can hit), then charge and attack with a bleeding weapon to get the most health out of your opponent without losing too much. Don’t rush things and everything will be OK, as long as you can land your hits – and at first, you won’t, but you will get better with practice.

5. Don’t rush to the Central Area early on: there are goodies there, but it’s the most open area and it’s the place where people gather. It’s never a good idea to fight two people at the same time, or have somebody waiting for you to defeat a player, just to apply the final blow. So stay away from the center for as long as possible and whenever you see two people fighting, wait for one of them to die, then get your easy win!

6. Always close doors behind you and place traps. If you leave doors open you won’t know if an opponent enters the building, so make sure to close the door after you in order to get alerted if somebody comes in. Also, if you could place a trap or a steel snare, place them in front of the door to get an advantage over your enemy. Always try to be one step ahead of your enemy, strategizing more than just running around, trying to find your next target.

7. Activate gas containers and destroy your opponents: you can activate them by throwing your weapon at them or by shooting them with a bow or gun. Make sure you always have a backup weapon, though, and that it’s always a melee weapon (since ranged weapons can easily be knocked out of your hands and you can’t win a melee fight with a ranged weapon).

These would be, for now, my The Culling tips and tricks. If you have other strategies to share with fellow players, or if you want to add anything else, please do so by leaving a comment below.

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