How to Tame a Dinosaur in Ark: Survival Evolved

Learn everything you’ll need to know in order to train your first dinosaur.


Training a dinosaur isn’t an easy accomplishment, and if you want to successfully pull off taming one of the larger beasts (like a Triceratops) you’re going to need to know the ins and outs of taming these prehistoric creatures. Don’t worry though, we’ve got your covered, and this guide will teach you all the basics that you need to know in order to take down, tame, and make use of your newest dinosaur friends. As you level up you'll unlock the ability to craft a bow and arrows, but for now we'll stick with the things that you can use early on in the game.


The first thing you need to do is prepare. This isn’t one of those operations where you run out and go all willy nilly and just start the process. If you want to truly succeed you’re going to have to set out with taming a dinosaur in mind. This means you’ll need to decide what kind of dino you want, gather the needed materials to pull off the job, and then make sure you’re a high enough level to easily pull it off. Items needed:

  • Slingshot
  • 30-50 Stone for Ammo
  • A spear (in case things don’t go according to plan)
  • At least 25-75 Narcoberries (depending on the dino. Smaller dinos require less.)
  • Enough berries or raw meat to satisfy your future pet dino’s hunger (I’d suggest at least 60-70 berries or 20 Raw Meat. You’ll obviously need more depending on which type of dino you’re going after. Never use Stimberries as food for a dino you are trying to tame. They wake them up faster, thus making you waste more resources to keep the creature asleep).

Taking Down the Beast

Once you have all the supplies you need it’s time to head off and find your new dino. I suggest starting off small with a Dodo or a Phioma, as they are the easiest creatures to take down. Just be aware that the Dodo isn’t good for much other than collecting feces for fertilizer.

Once you have the dino in your sights, and you’ve verified that your level is high enough, whip out your Slingshot and start hitting the creature with as many Stones as possible. The Dodo will try to attack you, and the Phioma will try to run away. Stay away from the Dodo’s sharp beak, and hit it with stones until it collapses to the ground, unconscious.

If you chose to take on the Phioma you’ll have to do a little more work. Keep chasing the creature and try your best to lure it into an alcove so that it gets stuck for a few moments. This is a brilliant time to shower it with stones. If you play your cards right you shouldn’t have too much trouble taming one a Phioma. However, if you find yourself straying too far from your set home-base, give up the pursuit and save your berries for another dino.

Making it Your Own

So you’ve taken down your first dino, and it’s time to tame that bad boy. The first thing you need to do is transfer your Narcoberries over to the dino’s inventory. Once this has happened stop and step away from the creature. In order to raise your Taming Effectiveness (the speed at which you tame the beast) you’re going to want to let it starve a little. I suggest at least letting it get down to 50% hunger. This will take time, of course, which means you’ll need to open up the inventory and Remote Use the Narcoberries in order to keep the creature asleep. Make sure to only use the Narcoberries one at a time.

Once the creature has reached 50% health throw in some berries and let the taming process take over. Just remember to Remote Use those Narcoberries to keep the dino asleep so you can tame it.

Finding Uses for Your Dino

Depending on the type of dino you’ve tamed there are several uses for them. The Phioma can be saddled and ridden, however, it works better as a pack mule. The great starting weight of the beast allows you to stack on extra wood and other supplies you might need, all while keeping your body as light as possible. The Dodo, however, isn’t good for much. They aren’t powerful attackers, and can easily be felled using a Spear, or by another dino. About the only thing that they are good for is feces collection, which can come in very handy if you have a Compost Bin and Farm set up. Otherwise I’d suggest straying from taming one of these creatures, and instead going for a Phioma.

Of course there’s nothing to stop you from taming something… bigger. Every creature in the game, from the T-Rex to the mighty Megalodon, can be tamed and used for various uses. So what are you waiting for? Get out there and tame your first dino. There’s only one way to and that’s up! Unless of course you end up on a Raptor’s dinner plate.

Guides Editor

Joshua holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Creative Writing and has been exploring the world of video games for as long as he can remember. He enjoys everything from large-scale RPGs to small, bite-size indie gems and everything in between.

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