Scavengers research and crafting guide

(Image credit: Midwinter Entertainment)

Scavengers, the brand new sandbox survival shooter, is out now...sort of. If you watch 30 minutes of it on Twitch, you get instant access to the Steam Early Access version. But it's worth the wait—you're in for a good time.

Scavengers is about much more than just killing an entire lobby of players, though. You don't even have to fight, if you're sneaky enough. Half the challenge is surviving the frosty wastes of a post-apocalyptic Earth. You'll need to know how to craft all the items, weapons, and upgrades necessary to gain the edge in battle and stave off a cold, cold death.

Thankfully, Scavengers lets you upgrade your gear and change your character loadout between matches, giving you a better footing on your next excursion. The research tab in the main menu is where you'll invest all your salvage and materials to start research projects.

Note: At least for this Early Access beta period, Scavengers developer Midwinter is giving players a free pack of 1,500 Chips (the in-game currency) in the shop menu. This is more than enough to purchase an extra explorer beyond the three you're first given, so definitely take a look at which explorer could be your new favorite, or save your resources for research grinding.

Scavengers research: Salvage, materials, and nanites explained

Scavengers' crafting and research system uses several resources, so it's easy to get it all confused. Here's a rundown of each type.

(Image credit: Midwinter)

Salvage: Materials you can find on Earth and by leveling up explorers mid-game. These include weapons you bring back, unused items, and just basic salvage materials you'll find by opening up chests. Examples of basic salvage include outlander hoard bags, Scourge biomass, orbital debris, and others. These basic salvage items you'll just find as you play.

Materials: These are the actual crafting materials you can extract from salvage in the research menu. You use Materials to build Components.

Common Materials include:

  • Chemical Salt - Salvaged from Industry Byproducts 
  • Copper - Salvaged from Outlander Hoard 
  • Crystalized Hydrate - Salvaged from Industrial Byproducts 
  • Glass - Salvaged from Outlander Hoard 
  • Iron Alloy - Salvaged from Outlander Hoard 
  • Minerals - Salvaged from Industrial Byproducts 
  • Pigment - Salvaged from Scourge Biomass 
  • Plant Fiber - Salvaged from Scourge 
  • Biomass Silicon - Salvaged from Industrial Byproducts

(Image credit: Midwinter)

Note that there are additional uncommon, rare, and legendary materials used for bigger projects you'll gain access to as you level up.

Nanite: Nanites are just another resource that can be collected from Salvage and Materials, and are used to construct Materials of your choice. Think of it like the Uno card that lets you pick any color.

Scavengers power system

(Image credit: Midwinter)

To complete research projects, you'll need a minimum power amount. At an early level, you'll get 5 power every minute and a maximum of 100 power. This power level will increase the further you level up.

Research in Scavengers is also dependent on time. So the more elaborate and rare the item you're crafting, the longer it will take to research. If you're pressed for time, you can use Chips (Scavenger's shop credits) to immediately finish the research.

(Image credit: Midwinter)

Research tiers

Upgrading your research tiers unlocks increasingly rare research projects. This also allows you to discover uncommon, rare, and legendary materials in later matches.

Upgrading research tiers is one of the more time-consuming and expensive tasks to complete in Scavengers. It will usually take several types of resources and four hours, along with a bigger power level than you may immediately have. This is definitely where the longform player progression is happening, but you'll absolutely want to invest in upgrading these tiers so you can quickly move on from basic crafting recipes.

(Image credit: Midwinter)

So what can you research in Scavengers?

There are six categories of research tasks you can complete. These include:

Signature weapons: Character-specific weapons with unique abilities or more powerful stats.

Wildcard weapons: Weapons that any character can use, such as a semi-auto pistol or a stealthier recurve bow.

Throwables: Your usual assortment of throwable weapons, like frag grenades.

Items: Health, stamina, and temperature level booster items like the Thermal Boost.

Talents: Skill tree abilities that give characters unique attack, defense, movement, and utility bonuses, such as a passive heal, increased weapon accuracy, and more.

Cosmetics: Additional looks for your characters, some of which can be purchased in the shop with Chips.

Need more help surviving the battle royale apocalypse? We've got 16 tips and tricks for Scavengers so you can make it out in one piece. Make sure to keep an eye on our Scavengers hub page for more guides and impressions.

Joseph Knoop

Joseph Knoop is a freelance writer specializing in all things Fortnite at PC Gamer. Master of Creative Codes and Fortnite's weekly missions, Joe's always ready with a scoop on Boba Fett or John Wick or whoever the hell is coming to Fortnite this week. It's with a mix of relief and disappointment that he hasn't yet become a Fortnite skin himself. There's always next season...