Lethal Company: 10 Tips for Getting Started

Here are 10 Tips and Tricks for Lethal Company Beginners to Get Started

Lethal Company has rapidly become a giant in the survival horror field and, as such, is constantly gaining new players. Whether it’s the addictive core gameplay loop, the ability to play with friends, the interesting creatures, or the consistently hilarious deaths, Lethal Company presses all the right buttons.

That said, there is a lot to keep track of if you want to keep all your limbs attached and make it out with your hard-earned junk. Procedural generation, random monsters, and player shenanigans all make it just that much more difficult to get a grasp on what you should be doing, and it can be quite daunting for new players. While we won’t spell out all the dangers for you here (as learning the hard way is part of the fun), we can help ease those first-game jitters by offering ten tips every new company employee should know.

Before we begin (and before you ask), we will impart to you the most critical piece of information we can think of: The emote keys are the “1” and “2” buttons for dancing and pointing, respectively.

1. Use Your Scanner Constantly

Using your scanner to find loot in Lethal Company

Every company employee comes equipped with a standard-issue “Echo Scanner”. This scanner is your best friend and should be utilized regularly and aggressively by players who want to meet quota and make it out alive. You can activate this scanner by pressing the right mouse button (RMB), which will send out a blue-tinted pulse that will bounce off walls, highlight and price loot for you as well as tag and catalog potential threats.

Veteran players will often use the scanner to traverse dark spaces without a light, as it marks the contours of the walls and floor, even in total darkness. Using the scanner can help you more easily locate loot, saving you time, and will automatically add up the values of multiple scanned items for you, though this isn’t a perfect science. Scanned monsters will be momentarily highlighted and will have their information added to the bestiary on your ship’s computer, which can give you information on how to handle them. Additionally, the scanner can help you find your way to facility entrances or back to your ship when outdoors by marking them on your HUD if you are close enough.

2. Your Ship Won’t Save You

Viewing the Exterior CCTV

It’s tempting to feel like your ship is a safe haven and fortress amid the dangers of hostile moons. However, this feeling will quickly dissipate when an eyeless dog crawls through your door and eats your entire crew in one bite. The ship is generally safer than standing out in the open, offering only one entry point and making it more difficult for large monsters to climb in, but they can and will climb in if given the chance.

The doors of your ship offer a sturdy but limited bulwark against danger, and utilizing them carefully is key to surviving an attack. The door control panel features two colored buttons for opening and closing the doors, but it also has two additional displays worth monitoring. The “door hydraulics” percentage indicates how long your doors will remain closed. Once you shut the doors, the percentage will begin counting down, and upon reaching zero, the doors will open again. Hydraulics will come back with time, so be careful not to waste this resource when you don’t need it. The monitor above the door panel shows a limited view outside your ship’s door and can be used to help monitor your surroundings and decide when to hunker down or leave altogether.

3. Watch Your Weight

Besure to monitor your weight as you go

This tip isn’t about staying healthy, though we wish our employees would lay off the space snacks so they could run for longer than a few seconds. We’re referring to the weight indicator in the bottom-right corner of your HUD vitals monitor. This number increases the more stuff you’re carrying and includes weight from both equipment and scrap. Being heavier might mean you’ve got more loot, but it also generally means you’re in more danger.

The higher your weight, the slower you will move, the shorter you can jump, and the more stamina it will take to sprint. This means it will be harder to run from monsters, it will take longer to get back to the ship, and it will be significantly harder to make those parkour jumps without plummeting to your death and taking that pricy scrap down with you. Certain environmental features may also react to the amount of weight you are carrying, so watch where you step if you’re hauling a heavy load.

4. Check the Weather

Keep an eye on the weather conditions

Employees are given the generous opportunity to choose which moons they’d like to land on and search for scrap. Generally speaking, the farther down the list of moons you go, the more dangerous they will be, but the better loot will be available. The last three moons on the list are particularly dangerous but hold the most valuable loot and require a preliminary payment to land on. This risk-reward system doesn’t factor in weather.

When looking at the list of moons, you may notice an additional indicator in parenthesis next to a moon’s name, such as (rainy) or (foggy). These are weather indicators and mean that the moon is currently afflicted by an additional environmental hazard that doesn’t increase your potential gains. Moons with weather should be bypassed if at all possible unless you particularly enjoy swimming through quicksand or being struck by lightning. Eclipsed moons, especially, should be avoided at all costs.

5. Save Your Scrap

Save all of your scrap material

This is a two-part tip, depending on what you’re attempting to do on any given run. Firstly, it’s important to note that the price at which the company will purchase your scrap will change each day, usually increasing steadily as you approach the deadline for a given quota until it reaches 100% on the final day. This means that saving your scrap to sell until the last day is almost always the best choice, though this does run the risk of losing everything in case of a team wipe. It is also possible for the company to purchase items at above 100% of their price on any given day, but this is quite rare, so keep an eye out.

Secondly, if you are attempting to go for a longer run and aren’t aiming to purchase something in particular, you can keep extra scrap on your ship after meeting one quota to add towards the next. This can help you meet more difficult quotas with fewer teammates and gives you a nest egg to fall back on if things don’t go your way. Remember that you’ll still lose it all if your whole team dies. When using this tactic, we recommend selling useless items such as metal plates and engines before usable items like air horns and street signs.

6. They Can Hear You

Be mindful of every sound you make

Lethal Company has a masterful implementation of proximity-based audio, but it isn’t just so you can hear your friends scream off in the distance. The world around you will react to the sounds you make, including blasting air horns, your footsteps, and even the sound of your voice. 

Most monsters can locate you based on how much sound you make, and several incorporate sound directly into their behavioral patterns. Some monsters can be lured away by noisy distractions; others might be scared off by loud sounds, while others may still be completely blind and hunt solely by sound. Reading a monster’s bestiary entry can give you a better idea of how to respond, but it’s always a good idea to be careful with how much sound you make. And yes, they can hear your walkie-talkie too.

7. Consider Leaving Someone On the Ship

Leaving someone behind might be the best way forward in Lethal Company

Assuming that you are playing multiplayer, the straightforward approach would be to have everyone inside and increase the amount of ground that can be covered and the amount of loot that can be carried. This isn’t an incorrect strategy, but there are several benefits to leaving one player on the ship to act as an operator as well.

The most obvious benefit is the ability to monitor teammates and direct them to loot or alert them to monsters that appear on the ship’s radar. An operator can also open and close sealed doors or temporarily disable turrets inside the facility from the ship’s terminal. This allows them to create routes for the scavenger team and seal away dangerous monsters at the same time. Players aboard the ship can also utilize upgrades such as the inverse teleporter to pull players out of danger and easily recover bodies. Lastly, and perhaps most importantly, the operator can keep track of the time and act as the last man standing to flee the moon and keep you from losing all your accumulated scrap if the scavenger team all perish.

8. Stay Alert, Stay Alive

Staying alert is key to your survival in Lethal Company

The inside of Lethal Company’s facilities are fine-tuned to make you paranoid and to cause you to question your senses. While there are certainly visual cues and sounds you can learn to ignore, such as the puffing sounds inside a steam cloud, you’ll need to learn to rely on your senses and your instincts if you want to stay alive.

Many of the game’s threats offer auditory cues to alert players to their presence before they can even be seen, such as the distant stomping of a giant or a spider’s skittering. Over time, you’ll learn to differentiate these sounds and get a better idea of what you’re dealing with before you face it. For now, don’t worry about determining if that chirp was a turret or a mine; what’s important is that you can tell there’s a threat in that direction. If you see an open vent, chances are something’s spawned, so watch your back. Being paranoid is warranted and can help keep you alive when everything wants you dead.

9. Work Fast and Get Out

The longer you linger around the more difficult it will get.

As soon as your ship touches down on an alien moon, the clock starts ticking. Every day starts at 8 am and concludes at midnight when the ship will automatically leave, with or without you. Chances are, you’ll want to be gone well before midnight and preferably before sundown. Monsters can spawn at any time of the day, but once the sun sets, things are guaranteed to get even more deadly.

The more time you spend on a moon, the more likely you are to die horribly, and the clock moves fast. Work together to get your loot out of the facility and back to the ship as quickly as possible. Have players haul loot back while others go in for more, or swap between hauling and scavenging roles to keep things moving. When the sun sets, it’s time to leave, so speed and efficiency are key to a successful run.

10. Learn When to Cut Your Losses

Learn when to cut your losses in Lethal Company

You’re at the ship, and it’s already dark. Two of your teammates are missing, and the quota comes tomorrow. Do you risk leaving the ship for one more scav run or bail out and hope for the best? These are the scenarios you’ll often find yourself facing when you play Lethal Company, and making the right call will ultimately come down to a case-by-case basis. If you’re far behind, it might be worth the risk. If you might already have enough or still have another day, it might be better to cut your losses and leave. 

While we can’t tell you the right answer to these kinds of scenarios, we can give you a bit of advice to keep in mind when deciding. First, remember that the environment becomes drastically more dangerous after dark and that time moves fast. Secondly, dead teammates whose bodies aren’t recovered only deduct from your current money and don’t affect quotas. Finally, keep in mind that a team wipe means you lose everything you’ve collected. Don’t be greedy, take risks, and think pragmatically.

Great Great Assets

Remember, you are the Company's great, great assets.

Lethal Company’s developer Zeekerss has done an incredible job of making a game where dying is part of the fun. Don’t feel bad if you keep dying; that’s part of the learning process. Examine how it happened, learn how to avoid it the next time around and you’ll be a pro in no time at all.

We’ve done our best to lay out the basics, but your ability to become the company’s greatest asset will ultimately come down to your ability to adapt and learn from mistakes.

Aaron Van Dyck's avatar

About Aaron Van Dyck

Aaron Van Dyck is a thriller novelist with a passion for survival games and exploration. He started writing at the age of 13 and has always been drawn to the sense of self-reliance and freedom found in open worlds. An avid urban explorer and RPG enthusiast, he enjoys dungeon crawling and has a particular love for The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt, Far Cry 5, and Cataclysm: DDA. He's also a fan of shooters and action games with immersive stories and unique monsters to encounter.

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