How to Craft in The Last of Us Part 1

How to upgrade all your weapons in The Last of Us Part 1 by finding different upgrades for the weapons and useful items.

I won’t say that crafting in The Last of Us Part 1 is quite complicated, but it’s good enough to integrate well with the gameplay. You can craft items by combining different raw materials in the crafting menu of the game.

For more help on The Last of Us, read our Collectibles, Optional Conversations and Ellie’s Jokes Locations guide.

The Last of Us Part 1 Crafting

You collect raw materials from various sources in TLoU Part 1 and then use them to craft useful items. In The Last of Us Part 1, there are 6 primary types of items/materials that can be crafted. These items once crafted can be upgraded further via finding different manuals hidden throughout the game.

You can craft the following in TLoU Part 1:

  • Melee Weapon Upgrades
  • Shiv
  • Health Kits
  • Molotov Cocktail
  • Nail Bomb
  • Smoke Bomb

Melee Weapon Upgrade Crafting

Since it’s a survivor horror, melee weapons of different types have an important part to play. In the initial stages of the game, these weapons are simple tools (wooden bar, for instance), and they degenerate after you use them a few times.

However, when you get to Bill’s town, you will find your first modified melee weapon on the roof. It’s an upgraded version of the basic melee weapon. These upgraded weapons are deadlier and can even take out the infected sometimes in one hit.

You can craft these upgrades and use them with the carried melee weapons.

Materials Required: Blade, Binding and Melee Weapon

The materials required for any upgrade can be found at different places throughout the game so make sure that you scavenge every corner before entering the next area. You can find the two manuals to improve the efficiency of these upgrades:

Upgrade Manual #1 – Melee Knots
Location. It will add 1 hit to your melee weapon. You can find it in Pittsburgh (Hotel Grand) on a table before entering the ballroom.

Upgrade Manual #2 – Melee Techniques
Location. You can find it in Chapter 6 (Suburbs) in the Abandoned Brick House. Make Ellie climb up the attic and you will find it there.

Shiv Crafting

In the Quarantine Zone, you will learn the use of Shivs. These are basically sharp blades that you can use for Stealth/grab kills. They are crucial to take down creatures like Clickers as you can’t just strangle them so a shiv is required to slit their throat.

Just like the melee weapons, Shivs degenerate after usage. Initially, each Shiv gives you one shot, but if you manage to find the relative manuals (upgrades), you can increase the number of times you can use a single Shiv. Now, to craft a shiv, the following materials are required:

Materials Required: Blade and Binding

Upgrades for a Shiv can be found at the following Locations:

Upgrade Manual #1 – Shiv Sharpening
Location. You can find it in Bill’s Town just after he rescues Joel and Ellie. Look for the manual in the bar.

Upgrade Manual #2 – Shiv Reinforcement
Location. It can be found in the Hotel Gran Lobby Safe (Pittsburgh). You will need “Note to Staff” Artifact to make it work.

Health Kits Crafting

Health Kits are vital for your survival as infected can surprise you many times. You can restore your health using these kits. Health restoration takes time so it’s recommended that you do it while in the cover as enemies can still attack even if you are using your backpack.

To craft a Health kit, you are going to need:

Materials Required: Rag and Alcohol

You can upgrade the amount of health restored by a kit by finding the following manuals:

Upgrade Manual #1 – Health Splinting
Location. In Pittsburgh, while you in the garage (Hunter Camp), get to the second floor and you can find it on the shelves on the left side.

Upgrade Manual #2 – Health Sterilization
Location. While you are in the university, use the stairs opposite to the building and make your way across the courtyard. Enter through the room after climbing out of the room to find this manual.

Molotov Cocktail Crafting

These are the traditional explosives you can use to destroy multiple enemies in a close range. To craft a molotov cocktail, you are going to need:

Required Materials: Rag and Alcohol

When a molotov explodes it will leave a burning area that will keep on dealing damage till the enemy is standing there. Like other crafted materials, you can also upgrade molotovs by finding manuals:

Upgrade Manual #1 – Molotov Construction
Location. Just after meeting Sam and Henry during the Hunter City checkpoint, you can find it on a desk in the apartment. The upgrade increase the radius of molotov.

Upgrade Manual #2 – Molotov Usage
Location. While you are in the science building, head to the second floor and use the shiv to open a lecture room. On the first table there, you can find this manual.

Nail Bomb

Bill introduces you to one of his works of art, the Nail Bomb. It’s basically a booby trap that will explode when enemies come in contact. Just like the claymore. After Bill hands it over to you, you can use the following materials to craft it:

Materials Required: Blade and Explosive.

Its upgrades can be found at the following locations:

Upgrade Manual #1 – Nail Bomb Containment
Location. You can find it in Suburbs while you are in the sewers. After dealing with the sound alarm and getting a new handgun, you can find on the shelves. The upgrade increases the range of the bomb.

Upgrade Manual #2 – Nail Bomb Sharpnel
Location. In Bus Depot (Underground Tunnel), you can find it on the top of the truck that is titled in the vertical direction of the tunnel. The manual will increase the radius of the Nail bomb.

Smoke Bomb

It not only breaks the line of sight but can also be used to stun enemies. You are going to need the following materials to craft a smoke bomb:

Materials Required: Explosives and Sugar

The manuals to upgrade a smoke bomb can be found:

Upgrade Manual #1 – Smoke Chemistry
Location. You can find it in the turbine control room of Tommy’s Dam. It’s there around the panel.

Upgrade Manual #2 – Smoke Shaping
Location. At the Lakeside Resort, when Joel wakes up, make your way to the second building on the left side. After the room, make your way to the back alley. Open the shed there to find the manual.

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Ali is a passionate RPG gamer. He believes that western RPGs still have a lot to learn from JRPGs. He is editor-in-chief at but that doesn't stop him from writing about his favorite video ...