What is RUST Griefing

RUST Griefing: Toxicity Evolved

Picture a world where that pesky neighbor that lives in the apartment directly above you—constantly beating the floor at 2 AM with a sledgehammer, tracking trash through the shared space in front of your door, and irritatingly taking your parking space on repeat. All at once discovered the definition of Karma. 

Some liken RUST griefing to this scenario exactly, taking matters into their own hands to prevent an irritant from continuing their antics. Griefing is another way for others to take your parking spot. 

Whichever floor you live on, the topic of griefing hardly ever means the same to everyone. First, we should look at a reasonably rounded definition.

What exactly is RUST griefing?

Griefing is the intentional mutilation or alteration of a RUST base to prohibit the original owner from accessing any portion therein. This practice includes adding external TCs to hinder base expansion or the placement of foundations or entities within the base itself to halt entry. It is the in-game equivalent of evicting a neighbor without police intervention.

Griefing can be done with any number of motives, ranging from attempting to separate a team or individual from their base entirely as a form of demonstrating dominance or land claim to being done during the performance of an online raid to safeguard one inherent property or newly acquired possession.

Going a step further, griefing generally has more permanent consequences for the Griefee compared to less severe but equally irritating behavior. Going the other way, we step out of the realm of griefing and into the world of harassment. We have broken down examples of each into the categories below.

Examples of griefing in RUST

RUST — Doorways Griefed

Motive, the chief purpose behind performing a grief, can be as small as placing a Furnace in a doorway to prevent easy access or slapping down more permanent structures in doorways to prevent access until raided or decayed. 

Further examples of forms of griefing include but are not limited to:

  • The placement of non-removable or lockable entities in door frames, such as Metal Shop Fronts
  • High Walls or other difficult-to-remove objects are placed through doorways or at odd angles to make the sealing of a base or compound impossible.
  • Using building mechanics to ‘wall off’ the Tool Cupboard of a base, ensuring its gradual decay until gone.
  • “TC Griefing,” or building and sealing off external tool cupboards to prevent the building or completion of a compound
  • Placing barricade-type entities, such as Metal Barricades, in passageways to prevent movement and cause damage to those that touch them
  • Littering a newly raided base with every assortment of traps imaginable, making re-entry without essentially raiding the base again impossible
  • Utilizing Vending Machines to block passageways, given their high cost to destroy
  • Using a base’s exploitive mechanic to prevent entry, such as re-sealing a stability bunker using HQM instead of wood as the fulcrum.
  • To an extreme degree, using Homemade Landmines or Snap Traps as an additional layer of insult within a base makes its acquisition by a base owner more difficult.
  • Altering a bases design to make it otherwise uninhabitable or defensible
  • Surrounding a base (or cave) with a full High Wall ring, with or without Gates to prevent entry, or deploying Auto Turrets to achieve the same effect

Examples of irritants (non-griefing incidents)

Inversely, there are incidents within the game that, while appearing to be forms of griefing, really fall more into the irritation column. While all of these things are at the discretion of your particular servers admin team, things that most consider irritants instead of griefing are as follows:

  • Placement of Ladders, furnaces or signs, or other temporary obstructions that can be easily broken (or picked up)
  • Using a few snap traps or landmines placed covertly in bushes or shrubs to elicit jump scares
  • Building bases (non-obstructive or intrusive) within a few squares of an enemy base to keep tabs and have convenient spawn points
  • Disclosing enemy base locations in chat, Discord, or on in-game signs
  • Stealing Minicopters, Scrap Helicopters, or other vehicle types for any reason
  • Land-claiming areas via Tool Cupboards that were previously unclaimed and not directly in the path of a base’s logical compound radius
  • Building thatch floors or frames on the sides of enemy buildings to passively drain small amounts of wood from their Tool Cupboard
  • Using Drones or remote camera setups to spy or gather information
  • Harvesting of all resources in an area to better expose base locations (primarily trees)
  • Picking up of entities such as Work Benches, boxes, or furnaces from a raided base

A case for griefing

Sometimes, subtle hints, kind requests, and innuendo aren’t effective. You’ve constructed your base, put up your high walls, and that pesky neighbor continues to have a prime raid-base location just outside your building privilege radius. He said he would move, but it’s been days now. 

Sometimes, it almost seems forgivable and appropriate to commandeer a base not rightfully yours. Depending on the rules of the server you’re playing, that might just be the correct thing to do.

Taking this a step further, there are a few better ways of getting a rival clan out of your area than taking over and boarding up their base. This sends both a message of strength and local dominance. Griefing is also very advantageous when performing online raids. 

Gaining control of the TC and putting up your own doors is hardly ever frowned upon and is in fact, a proper punctuation mark at the end of the event. Be sure to check with the admins responsible if this is accepted for those servers advertising Noob Friendly.

A case against griefing

RUST — A Base's Entry Points Obstructed with Highwalls

As mentioned, some servers downright state ‘No Griefing or Base takeovers’ in their descriptions. While this isn’t consistent across the board, it does happen. Admins and Server Owners have the right to impose whatever rules they like, and this isn’t really up for anyone else to debate.

However, on those servers without such disclaimers, griefing is as much a reality as needing food and water. You are going to find yourself offline raided, without a bag, and unable to access your base at some point as a RUST player. But getting a reputation as a serial griefer, especially on smaller population servers, can occasionally become a serious detriment.

Griefing does as much to hinder progress as it does to promote it. Players and teams are less likely to perform trades or interact with a degree of civility with those teams that take over and grief every base they raid.

Griefing can, in some cases, put your base at risk, making you a raid target for those larger groups that have taken notice of your antics. Maybe you hit one of their farm bases and didn’t know it. Depending on the size of your group, this may or may not be a consideration.

Remember, most good Youtube content creators’ revenge plots begin with an offline raid, usually accompanied by excessive griefing.


It is the view of the RUST community at large that griefing is both acceptable and sometimes necessary, especially as it relates to online raiding. While similar and sometimes overlapping, griefing should not be confused with harassment.

Harassment is a targeted personal attack on an individual or team by another individual or team. Harassment can be either patterned and continuous or, when severely grievous, a single attack. 

Admin discretion is usually used to determine each case. Harassment, per the direction of Facepunch Studios, is not tolerated in any form.

So then, when does griefing become harassment? 

Either party may argue their side to great effect, as griefing and harassment overlap considerably, but not all griefing is harassment. Speaking objectively with many years of administrative experience, the differentiation generally comes down to intent. What was the intended outcome at the time of the grief being perpetrated? 

If repeated, excessive griefing occurs at the hands of a repeated team or individual against the same team or individual, a case for harassment could definitely be made. As this varies from server to server, check with the applicable admin team for details.

I’ve been griefed on the server I play. What do I do?

In most cases, you move on. Either restart your adventure in a different base, in a different location, or on a different server or raid back into it. Griefing is standard practice for most RUST servers, and admins will take no intervention. Contact the admin team if you play a server with rules or policies against griefing.

If you play on Official RUST servers, it is relatively safe to say that you are on your own.

Tips for preventing griefing

RUST — Tool Cupboards and Doors Obstructed

While no direct evidence will be presented, there does seem to be a communal correlation between the base size and frequency of griefing. Larger bases tend to be griefed once raided at an alarmingly higher rate than smaller bases (except in the case of territorial disputes). Building a more modest base puts you at a predisposition to be griefed less, but this sort of rationality is a bit of a stretch.

Many teams use external Tool Cupboard coverage to ensure that the internal deployables are left after a raid and that no doors can be placed. Hands down, this type of redundancy does help to deter would-be raiders from occupying your home. The simplest, most important tip that we can give would be to lock your tool cupboard immediately after placing it. Many new players neglect this and pay the price in more ways than one.

Aside from structural upgrades and improvements, temper your irritating behavior in the game. RUST is a veritable sandbox of people looking to educate; “I am going to teach that roof-camping piece of trash a lesson!” For those unable to read between the lines, just know that your behavior through player interaction is being watched by someone. When your base is the one being raided tonight, things like door camping, roof camping, or shouting racial slurs will be remembered. Plan accordingly.

Final thoughts on griefing in RUST

Right or wrong, educating ourselves about the cause and effect in RUST is important. Griefing is just that, whether you did something that caused your enemy to take your base completely over or you effectively were able to safeguard against it happening. If we left anything out or glanced over a portion of the subject that needs more explanation, drop in on our Discord and let us know in person. We love getting community feedback.

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About No Limit Llama

An aspiring woodworker and web designer. Father, husband, and Rust veteran. Llama has written op-eds and official game documents for over two decades. The earliest writings were on Asheron’s Call, followed by World of Warcraft and eventually Rust. The vast majority of his indoor time is spent running Rust servers or helping friends with their Rust-related projects. He enjoys working around the house, continuing his education when time permits, and creating new processes to simplify activities of daily living for his friends and family. He has an incredible wife, a dog, three children, and one granddaughter.

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