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One of the most highly sought-after commodities in Conan Exiles is Tar. A black, viscous substance, most civilized folk wouldn’t be too keen on collecting vast quantities of this vile substance. For us Exiles, it’s one of the most valuable resources one could desire.
Today we’ll learn all about Tar and how to farm it efficiently. Like many other resources in Conan, knowledge is the key to success, and we’ll be learning that knowledge today. So, without further ado, let’s get explore this Conan Exiles Tar Farming Guide.
What is Tar?
Tar is a black oil-like substance popular amongst alchemists and sailors. The in-game item description describes Tar’s use in sealing the wood, though it has many other alternative uses. A byproduct of tanning hides, Tar is common to see, but the demands of Steelfire in the mid to late game can often lead you to a depressing deficit in this valuable substance.
What uses does it have?
Despite its reputation as a sealing agent on wood, Tar is a deceptive substance. While it protects the wood it is used on, you can also use Tar in various explosive substances. It’s also a key ingredient in perhaps one of the most valuable items in The Exiled Lands, Steelfire.
Tar also sees use in a few dyes and a handful of practical placeable items, like the Argossean fountains and regular water well. Seeing as Steelfire is such a valuable resource that you will undoubtedly need a lot of, let’s look into exactly how you can acquire Tar.
How do I get Tar?
Tar is the natural byproduct of tanning animal hides. While others exist, this is the primary way to acquire Tar, especially in large quantities. For each pot of Tar, you’ll need to tan three hides into their respective leather version. Therefore, when harvesting bark and hide, it’s a good idea to keep in mind that 3:1 ratio.
As a byproduct of the tanning process, Tar is a somewhat time-gated resource concerning how much you can produce in an hour. Endeavoring to create more Tar will inevitably cost you more resources in the process of crafting new tanning stations. Nevertheless, sometimes it’s worth the investment to increase your overall output of Tar. It depends on how much Tar you wish to produce, and if the need for that production warrants an extra crafting station to cut down on production time.
To tan hides, you’ll need to gather raw hides and bark to use on the tanning bench. So, let’s look into the best ways to gather those resources.
Gathering large quantities of hides depends on the area of the map you live. Fortunately, almost every animal, even humans, will offer small amounts of hide. For that reason, gathering smaller quantities of hide in your local area is easy.
However, if you’re looking for larger quantities, the best location is the Savannah in the center of The Exiled Lands. This is an area of rolling grasslands where rhinos, elephants, and tigers live together. This spot is always popular for farming hides, as it offers plentiful yields, alongside a good source of experience for leveling up your character.
Combat in the Savannah can be rough, so I recommend bringing at least Steel weapons and tools, though you can get away with Iron if you’re careful. Bring a weapon you’re comfortable with, a skinning dagger, and some food, wraps, or potions to heal yourself.
Primarily, you’ll want to farm the Rhinos. These beasts are easy to kill and offer a good amount of hiding. Tigers are also a good option, but I avoid elephants. They’re massive targets that can deal hefty damage, but if you’re already past the Steel age and into Hardened Steel or Star Metal, you’ll encounter no issues.
Once you’ve killed your beast of choice, provided you’re not about to get leaped on by a tiger, it’s time to skin it. Grab your skinning dagger and harvest the corpse to get the maximum amount of hide for your efforts. Don’t worry too much about what sort of hide you get, as basically everything apart is useful to you. On a regular trip, you’ll be able to gather a healthy quantity of hides from the enemies here, alongside any you choose to kill on the way to and from the Savannah.
Along with the hides, you’ll also need bark to fuel your tannery. Unlike a campfire, oven, or furnace, your tanner’s bench requires bark to tan the hides. Fortunately, the bark is pretty easy to gather, all you need is some manual labor.
Firstly you’ll need a pick. Iron will serve you well in the early game, though if you have Steel or higher, that’s even better. You’ll then want to find a nearby cluster of trees and start swinging. When you use a hatchet, you’ll gather a lot of wood, but the pick offers you resin and bark in a balanced quantity. Resin is incredibly useful for Stone Consolidant, and we’ll utilize the bark in our tanner’s bench.
You can gather more bark by focusing on dead trees, which don’t offer resin but do offer small quantities of dry wood alongside the bark. I don’t personally recommend this unless you live close to a bunch of dead trees, and it’s just not worth the extra effort. The resin is also incredibly useful, so I recommend harvesting bark from live trees.
There is also a passive but less efficient method of harvesting bark, where you strip regular wood down into bark. You do this in a Carpenter’s Bench, and the ratio of wood to bark improves once you’ve created the upgraded version of the benches. This method can prove useful for passive bark, though you shouldn’t exhaust your supplies. Wood is a crucial resource, and you don’t want to find your stocks empty.
Tanning The Hides
Now that you have bark and hide, it’s time to start tanning. In the early game, you’ll likely only have either the regular or improved tannery, neither of which increases bark production. The improved tannery does offer a slightly increased fuel duration though, which will produce more Tar per bark.
The Precision Tannery is the perfect choice for farming Tar efficiently. This bench uses fuel much faster, increasing your bark needs, though you will tan hides 360% faster. If you’re capable of gaining and maintaining a hefty supply of bark, the Precision Tannery is a great option, but otherwise, the Improved Tannery or Plant-Based Tannery both work very well.
If you wish to be as efficient as possible and squeeze every last drop of Tar from your hides, we should treat raw hides differently. Materials that yield regular hide should be tanned immediately, but those that yield thick hide should be stripped to regular hides in the tanner’s table. Below, you’ll find a list of the respective materials.
Hide-yielding: Feline pelt, Hyena pelt, Reptile hide, Wolf pelt, Bat skin
Thick-Hide-yielding: Rhino hide, Elephant hide, Bear pelt
The reason you’ll want to strip down certain materials is that, as mentioned earlier, three hides produce a single Tar. By stripping down the specific hides into the regular thick hide, you’ll end up with more units overall. Therefore, you will yield more Tar for your efforts.
Keep in mind that this isn’t always ideal, as you’ll often need thick hides for padding or various other crafting projects. Don’t get too hung up on maximizing your efficiency, but do keep it in mind when you can.
There are a few other methods available to produce Tar without tanning hides, though they’re far from ideal.
The first is using an Alchemist’s Bench to create Tar. This requires any Tier 4 named Alchemist thrall, and a handful of resources. Below are those recipes.
- Recipe One: Twenty Oil, Five Raw Ash.
- Recipe Two: Ten Resin, Ten Raw Ash.
Unless you’re already sitting on a stockpile of raw ash, neither of these methods is worth undertaking. That is especially true for the method of using oil, which is a valuable resource that you should not waste on Tar production.
Another method you can use is crushing coal down into Tar. You’ll need to place 25 pieces of coal into a fluid press to produce one pot of Tar. Even if you have vast coal reserves, Do not waste them on manufacturing Tar in this manner. It’s incredibly wasteful, considering that coal could be used to produce dyes or fuel your furnaces.
Finally, something that isn’t practical to regularly farm, but is an excellent alternative source of Tar. As you slay animals around The Exiled Lands, you’ll eventually gather some heads. You can tan these heads down into leather and Tar on the tanner’s bench. It’s impractical to farm Tar using this method alone, but it’s a nice occasional bump.
Using your Tar
Now you’ve got plenty of Tar to use on whatever you desire. Tar can be used in making some dyes and warpaints, and is also used in explosives. However, one of the most vital uses of Tar is in Steelfire. You can craft Steelfire by mixing two pots of Tar and a single unit of Brimstone in a Firebowl Cauldron. You can find out more about farming Brimstone through my guide.
Below is an exhaustive list of the things you can craft using Tar.
- Dyer’s Bench
- Explosive Jar
- Grease Orb
- Argossean Fountain (Variant A)
- Argossean Fountain (Variant B)
- Kindling Fire
- Pool of Refreshment
- Water Well
- Explosive Arrow
- Oil Arrow
- Dark Dye Colorant
- Tan Dye
- Warpaint – Emptiness
- Warpaint – Snake
Frequently Asked Questions
Question: Can I farm Tar from NPCs?
Answer: Unfortunately not. Like many other resources in Conan, Tar can occasionally drop from defeated enemies. However, the loot pool for those enemies is pretty vast. While you might get the occasional chunk of Tar, this method is unfortunately not sustainable.
Question: Can tar be harvested from any resources in the world?
Answer: No. I can’t speak for modded maps, but Siptah and The Exiled Lands unfortunately don’t have any natural Tar deposits or anything of the sort. Harvesting hides and tanning them remains the best way to farm Tar on both official maps. If you’re playing a modded map, I recommend looking into the details of that map to see if Tar exists as a natural resource.
Question: Should I try to stockpile Tar in the early game?
Answer: I usually advise against stockpiling resources in the early game, but Tar is an exception. Tar is useful in the early game and becomes even more useful as you move from the Iron to the Steel age. I don’t recommend going all-out on Tar production while you’re still trying to establish your base and gather other important resources, but keeping a small stock is a good idea.
Question: Why is Tar considered to be so valuable?
Answer: Tar is valuable mainly due to its use in creating Steelfire. As you move ahead from the Iron age, you’ll encounter The Riddle of Steel, the stepping stone between the ages. The answer to that riddle is Steelfire, a material used to transmute and harden Iron into Steel. As a core foundation of Steel, it’s a prerequisite in the creation of Hardened Steel and the harvesting of Star Metal, and thus it plays an integral part in your late-game progression.
To wrap things up, Tar is easy to farm. One of the learning curves in Conan Exiles is the need for resources and learning how to get them, and Tar is just one of many with that same learning curve. Today, I’ve shown you how to gather hides and bark, and the most efficient way to farm Tar. Due to how useful tanned hides are, you may sometimes have to trade off Tar efficiency for resources you need, but now you know how to step up production when necessary. With just a bit of effort, you’ll be rolling (not literally) in Steelfire. Grab your pick and skinning knife, there’s work to be done. Best of luck, Exile!
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