7 Days to Die – Basic Guide (Mechanics, Playstyle, Looting)

An overview of the basic mechanics of 7D2D as well as play styles and tips and tricks to help novice players find their feet more quickly in this astounding game. Come explore the endless variety, where Minecraft meets Left For Dead.

Guide to Basics

Setup and Starting a Game

Welcome to my 7 Days to Die (7D2D) guide. This guide aims to provide a roadmap for the novice player to bridge the challenges in the early game, and to give you targets to aspire to in the future (crafting, bases, role playing etc.).

Assuming you have successfully installed and launched 7D2D, on the main menu there are a whole lot of options. For now, select “New Game” instead of “Multiplayer” as some servers can be quite challenging to navigate. Create your Avatar to your liking but remember that this will be you in all your single and multiplayer games.

Once this is done, you’ll be given the option to chose a map (Start with “Navezgame”, it’s simpler to learn from). On the right hand side are a load of options. At this stage, select the easiest difficulty as this game is challenging enough in the beginning without worrying about dying every 5 mins and losing all your progress. In the advanced settings, also select “Keep Toolbelt on Death”. Whether you want to keep your inventory on death is up to you ๐Ÿ˜‰ but for a taste of danger, keep it off. Increase the XP to 300% and drop the zombie night speed to ‘Jogging’. Don’t touch any other settings unless you are sure!!!

Launch the game on the left side of the screen. Congrats, you are on the path of being a Survivor!

Game Basics

1. Controls

Every computer is different but the basic controls remain the same, more or less, as other similar games. Take a moment to press the Escape (Esc) button on your keyboard to open the pause menu and have a look through the controls. Make sure your key board is configured in game the way you want it. Key things to have on hand are: Directions (WASD), the Action button (‘E’), reload (‘R’), the shortcuts to your tool belt (1234567890), Next Item on Tool Belt (‘Q’), Activate Stealth (‘X’), Jump (‘Spacebar’), and Inventory (Left Tab) and your mouse buttons: Fire/Hit – left click, Aim – Right Click, and zoom – wheel. Feel free to setup the way you want but make sure you are comfortable with the basic keys.

When comfortable, scale your graphics to suit your setup. Best is to have it running on the lowest you can tolerate until you gauge the impact the zombies will have on your system.

Return to the game, and have a look around the location you have spawned. There are a variety of environments (‘biomes’) in the game ranging from forests, to deserts, to snow. Furthermore, there are old cities and towns dotted all over the place, as well as radioactive areas on the borders of the map (instant death…). Roads link all the settlements, as well as Traders Posts and most buildings in general. Dirt roads generally lead to traders or small houses, while tarmac covered roads link ‘cities’.

You will notice a number of things on your Heads Up Display (HUD): A clock and the day number (Day 1 to start with), as well as a load of things on your tool belt along the bottom centre of your screen and a compass reticle on the very top. On the bottom left is your health and stamina. Health does not increase over time by default and you need to eat food to regain it slowly, use some medications or chose certain talent points. Stamina comes back fairly quickly, and can be further increased with talents. You gain 1 point of health and stamina per level in game.

2. Dying

If your health drops below 0, you die. Simple. Lots of things will cause you to lose health including:

  • Zombie attacks
  • Zombie animals (wolves, coyotes, vultures, and bears)
  • Non-zombie animal attacks (coyotes, wolves, bears, boars and snow cats)
  • Falling from heights
  • Cave ins
  • Explosions (mines, grenades, rocket launchers…)
  • Traps
  • Other players on PvP servers…

If your hunger or thirst levels drop below 0, you die. Simple really, just like in real life. Unlike IRL, food and water levels drop at about the same rate, meaning you need to eat and drink every day. Being Thirsty or Hungry will cause your stamina to drop and if it hits 0 you die.

Falling from a great height will cause you to sprain your legs, break your legs and lose health and may kill you. You can offset the damage from falling with talents, books and gear.

If you die, you will re-spawn on your Bedroll which you make at the beginning of the game during the starting quests. If you lose your bedroll or want to spawn somewhere else on death (like in your base…) just make a new one from some plant fibres.

3. Intro Quests

The introductory quests introduce the bare minimum of crafting and building needed to start a budding player off. To harvest materials, use the left mouse button to ‘hit’ grass, plants, trees, logs and boulders to obtain plant fibres, wood and stone. Press Tab to open your inventory and use these materials to make a stone axe. Collect more plant fibres to make clothing to hide your nudity, and while hunting, keep an eye out for birds nests to gather feathers for arrows. You can hack the nests with your axe to also yield a few more feathers. Make all the items requested and place the fireplace, wooden block and bedroll by placing them on your tool belt, selecting them, and using the right mouse button to place them where you want them. Upgraded the wooden block using the stone axe by coming close to the wooden block and holding the right mouse button.

Congratulations, you now have some basic stone tools, weapons, and basic crafting knowledge! You also have 4 points to spend in the talent screen (more on this later…). The game will now direct you towards the nearest Trader Outpost which may be anywhere from a few meters away to a few kilometres/miles away… Unless it is very close, take your time before heading in that direction.

4. Game Variables

There are several elements to keep in mind:

  • Zombies are stupid, they will try to find the fastest way to you. This includes going through walls…
  • Zombies ‘track’ players based on their movement. Zombies will head to the nearest ‘player known’ location before targeting the player if they lose sight.
  • Zombies are attracted to noise. The area affected is variable. Constant loud noises (mining etc.) may attract screamers this may be a very bad thing…).
  • Zombie bites are potentially infectious. Avoid melee until you have some armour and stocks of honey/herbal meds/antibiotics.
  • Illnesses are a minor feature but can be lethal if caught at the wrong time. Avoid eating risky foods if you can (murky water, mouldy bread, old sham sandwich…).
  • The environment and weather affects your personal temperature. Outside the optimum range, this will increase your food & water usage. Being wet helps in hot environments and doesn’t in cold ones (think reality…).
  • Zombies don’t like heat and things that produce heat. This includes forges, campfires, torches, burning barrels and chemistry sets. Clusters of these produce ‘heat islands’ which attract screamers and other zombies. Use electrical items to reduce base heat where possible.
  • You need to eat and drink every day. Ideally, drink bottled water or brewed drinks and eat canned food to avoid illness. Collect recipes to craft better meals.

Pro-tips for Beginners

1. Talents

There are 5 sets of talents:

  • Perception
  • Strength
  • Fortitude
  • Agility
  • Intellect

Each set of talents has its own weapons it specialises in, as well as other advantages. It is clear from the spread of talents that this game encourages specialisation and team work, but as you can pick and chose your own build from each of the sets, the variety of options provides loads of different play styles (see below for some builds and role playing styles).

In the beginning, I suggest putting points into Strength and Fortitude talents:

  • Clubs to hit enemies on the head – 1 point.

Mining – Unlocks iron tool crafting and increasing gathering – 1 point.

  • Some Health regeneration – 1 point.
  • Less Stamina lost when running – 1 point.

No need to put points into increasing the value of Strength and Fortitude for now, but with the high XP multiplier, you’ll have loads of points to spend soon. I suggest specialising in shotguns and clubs to begin with, as shotguns don’t require brass to make their ammo and clubs are by far the best tool to crush heads with regularity in the beginning. Another good spend is a single point in cooking, to unlock basic recipes to survive on until you find more recipes.

For further suggestions on how to spend points in the first 40 levels, check out the ‘All rounder’ build in the Role Playing section below.

2. Books

In many buildings and other places, there are books that can be found. Mostly they can be found in bookcases, filing cabinets, desks and drawers, as well as far more rarely in some crates, trash heaps and chests. They can also be bought from the Traders for a premium in the Secret Stash section, or obtained as quest loot.

Books contain bonus talents and skills in sets of 7 volumes. Having all 7 volumes confers a bonus talent depending on the volume. Check out the books section on the talents screen for more information. Some experienced players spend the first few days searching for books but this is not for the novice player who may die very quickly at this stage! Other books, schematics, can teach you how to make almost every item you can put talents in, including forges, tool benches, shotguns, even gyrocopters! As such, some talents are redundant later in the game as you can find all the schematics to make everything those points would unlock. This permits players with no talents in Intellect to eventually unlock all the building items and vehicles in game, though not the bonuses these talents confer… The same applies to all other talents that unlock crafting of specific items. Traders sell vials of “Grampa’s Forgettin’ Solution” to allow you to reset your talents.

Books and schematics are randomly spawned loot in the world. Be careful not accidentally to ‘scape’ them into paper as the Xp or resale value is much higher.

3. Some notes on Armour

  • Armour is your friend. The more you have, the less damage you take, the less likely you are to die. Each point corresponds to ~1% less damage per hit. Without it, you will die quickly…
  • There are 2 types of armour: Heavy and Light. There are specialty points in Fortitude and Agility to enable you to make them, and to offset the disadvantages in speed and stamina regeneration associated with using them.
  • Each type of armour has different classes.
  • Heavy: Scrap, Iron, Steel, SWAT.
  • Light: Padded, Leather, Military.
  • Military armour and Steel armour require ‘Parts’ from scrapped armour of the same type of otherwise found in the world as loot. Steel and Military armours also require schematics to build them.
  • Use the best of any armour you find in the world, or craft yourself. At present, there are no advantages or disadvantages to wearing ‘sets’ of armour beyond the visible stats. Mix and match what is best for you.
  • SWAT armour can’t be crafted at the moment but helmets can be found in the world and Traders.

4. Key points with Stealth

  • Stealth is a major advantage in the early game and even with no extra points in Agility provides a 2x bonus to any attack if the zombie/animal hasn’t noticed you yet. In the early game, it can provide a crucial advantage. Play styles such as the “Ninja Assassin” and “Hunter-Gatherer” both rely on Stealth early on.
  • When in stealth mode, many variables affect how ‘stealthy’ you are (ie. how much less noticeable than ‘normal’ you are): Light & shadows, time of day, armour type, armour mods, tool use, movement speed, talents, books, zombie vigilance, zombie line of sight
  • Try to approach zombies from behind if they are not asleep.
  • Armour increases your noise. The heavier, the louder. Padded armour doesn’t increase noise, but is much less strong than other types.
  • Some armour mods can decrease your noise.
  • Stealth doesn’t work on blood moon horde nights as the horde can find you anywhere you are.

Looting for Beginners

In the beginning, everything seems useful and essential. In truth, many things are redundant by mid-late game as loot accumulates quickly. While dropping those sewing kits or lead items may seem like a waste, I’m going to run you through the main sources of essential components and other ways to get them.

Starting out, your main focus will be getting food, and finding enough essentials to start a basic base for the first horde night (yes, it might be at the end of day 7, but it arrives sooner than you expect!). Priorities for the first week:

  • All food items & drinks (these are your lifeline in the early game until you have a decent stockpile).
  • Finding a pot and metal grill for your campfire.
  • Wood, stones and clay for your base.
  • Any iron tools (especially a pick axe!).
  • Wood/iron for spike traps.
  • Clothing suitable for the climate (to avoid increased food/drink consumption).
  • Surviving until day 8.

If you find any guns, use them until you find those you want to specialise in. You can’t afford to be picky early on, and if you are more experienced, you won’t need this guide to direct you! Role playing aside, a survivor just needs to survive.

There are 24 fundamental components, that cannot be made from anything else. These are:

  • Small Stones
  • Iron
  • Lead
  • Nitrate
  • Oil Shale
  • Charcoal
  • Clay Soil
  • Wood
  • Plant Fibres
  • Dirty Water/Snow
  • Brass (from Radiators, trophies, candlesticks, and doorknobs)
  • Plant Seeds
  • Metal Springs (from cars, beds, sofas and some electrical appliances)
  • Plastic Scraps (many sources)
  • Bone (animals, rotting corpses, trash…)
  • Food items (fresh meat, fat, fruit, vegetables etc.)
  • Motors
  • Steel tool Parts
  • Motor Tool Parts
  • Weapon Parts
  • Armour Parts
  • Sewing Kits
  • Bottles of Acid
  • Headlights

All other items can be made from a combination of these using the appropriate tools and talents/books/schematics. As such, once you have the relevant tools and knowledge, the actual scavenging is a matter of preference where many items are redundant and can be scrapped.

  • The first 10 items on the list can be readily mined/found in the world. Some biomes contain more of these than others. Most can be ignored while looting to save on precious inventory space while in towns and cities.
  • Brass is a scarce commodity but can be obtained by melting down radiators from house walls and cars, brass candlesticks, brass doorknobs, brass trophies and Dukes Tokens. Ideally, do not scrap these items to get the most from them (scrapping loses 25% of the total resource, rounded down). Brass can also be found loose as loot, and wrenched from brass lamps and from door if you find the relevant book.
  • Bullets are easier to make than loot in large enough quantities needed to survive. You will need to make gunpowder, brass bullet casings and lead bullet tips for most ammunition types then ‘construct’ them at the workbench.
  • Shotgun ammo is different and needs paper, gunpowder and shotgun pellets. The lack of brass makes this of real benefit for much of the game.
  • Gunpowder is slow by hand, but much faster (and more economical!) with a chemistry set, and best with 1 point in Yeah Science! to benefit from bulk building with 800 apiece of nitrate and coal to make stacks of 1000 gunpowder.
  • Wood is easy to find by cutting down trees.
  • Motors can be found sporadically in vehicles you wrench into pieces and garages.
  • Slain animals, zombie or alive, can be cut apart with knives (or other tools for a lesser yield) to obtain fresh meat (rotten if from zombies/corpses), bones and animal fat. The yield can be increased with talents (but it’s not all that worth it at the moment to be honest…)
  • Regular looting will reveal many sources of plastic and other items that can be broken down as needed or kept in their original form if deemed valuable enough (eg. Medical kits and bandages, tinned food, ammunition etc.).
  • Lead items should not be scavenged as lead is easily obtainable from mining in larger quantities even in the early game. The same applies to coal and nitrate in most cases. Iron, as it is so abundant in both looting and in mining, may be kept. Many items wrenched then produce, or scrap to, iron while exploring.
  • Bottles of acid are used to make wheels and a few high level food items (don’t ask me… I didn’t write the recipes…) so few are actually needed. They do sell for a reasonable price however.
  • Headlights are used to make some vehicle accessories, lanterns and spotlights. They also sell for a reasonable amount.
  • Clothing can be easily scrapped to cloth, as can excess bandages.
  • Low level (1-2) armour, steel tools and weapons should be scrapped for parts or resources as the value of each piece is relatively low.
  • Higher level items (3+) should be repaired and sold.
  • Adding mods to items increases their value as well as saving inventory space.

Keep your eyes open for storage mods to extend your carrying capacity and avoid being burdened. With the right mods on all clothing (pockets) and armour (storage packs) all burden can be alleviated without putting points into Pack Mule in the early game. In the late game, points in Pack Mule allow alternative mods on armour to boost effectiveness.

Base Building and Design

When building your first base, stay simple to begin with. You can always build a bigger, better one later on. The world is your oyster and if you can imagine it, you can probably make it!

1. Basic Starter Base

The following basic base model shouldn’t take more than 2 game days (2 hours IRL) to obtain all the components, make the parts, and do the building. It’s based on a design by *** which in turn is inspired by roman watchtowers. Simple but very effective. It can be expanded as needed.

Build a shovel and make a 6×6 hole 1 tile deep. This should give you lots of clay soil (600+). Hack apart bounders or mine stone underground until you have about 600 stone then combine with the clay to make ‘cobblestones’. 4x cobblestone can be made into a cobblestone block which is much stronger than wooden blocks. They can be easily upgraded into flagstone blocks with 10 cobblestone later on, and then concrete when you have obtained it. Fill the 6×6 hole with 36 of the cobblestone blocks, then build up 4 walls leaving space for a doorway. Build a door from wood (or iron is better if you have it). Ideally, you want the walls to be 5 high, though 4 is enough. Build a ladder from wood to climb up and down.

Add a ceiling to your new base with more blocks, leaving space to access your ladder. Consider leaving some space to provide a line of attack to any zombies that get in to your base and start climbing the ladder. Build a few Secure Wooden Chests (10 wood each) to store your items safely in your base as anything left out will disappear after a few minutes. Build wooden bars (not the central ones!) and place them around the top of your wall so you can fire down on enemies. Add more bars in front to prevent you falling off (happens easily during blood moon nights)!

Make a trapdoor from wood (or better iron!) and upgrade it fully to cover up your ladder. Make a roof from more blocks at least 3 blocks above the 1st to allow easy space to move. You can alter the shape of the blocks by holding the ‘R’ key and selecting the shapes. Use the ‘plate’ option to have more overhead space. Make wooden spikes and place them all around your walls expect for the front door to encourage the zombies to attack from that direction alone. Upgrade everything you can with more cobblestone (priority to the first two levels of blocks in your walls), mining more stone and clay as needed. This should be sufficient for the first few horde nights. Expand defences and upgrade the walls periodically.

To defend, use a combo of bullets where you have them, stone arrows otherwise, and any junk turrets you find to focus fire on the front door, and later on the ladder. Avoid melee as the shear number will quickly overwhelm even experienced players. Breaking the ladder will encourage the zombies to attack your base to bring the building down…

2. Keys to a good base

Location, location, location

  • The more central your base, the easier it is to go looting to nearby cities. However, on multiplayer servers with free-for-all rules, this may make you a target…
  • Consider a site close to a sizeable city and nearby to a trader for ease of access. Makes questing much more enjoyable!
  • Sheer cliffs prevent zombie spawning, so a location with one entry point and vertical cliffs on 3 sides around is ideal for a horde base (as long as they can’t jump down onto you!)
  • Consider the biome you want to base yourself in. Forest biomes are much more forgiving than desert and snow biomes, though the abundance of oil shale and other natural resources in the desert biome may offset this somewhat.
  • Naturally occurring or artificial islands can be used to slow the movement of zombies and add another layer of protection to bases.
  • Zombies can climb ladders!
  • Somehow the zombies also home in on the weakest section of your base. Use this to plan where you want the zombies to attack by reinforcing other areas more and focusing your defences.

Building tips

  • Build up, not down. Zombies can dig to you if it’s the easiest path to get to you… but they can’t fly (except those damn vultures!) so build UP!
  • Zombies will path along the line of least resistance, so fix you walls after each attack to avoid weak points they will home in on.
  • Zombies don’t like spikes and will avoid them (more or less) if they can. Use them liberally. However, you don’t get points for spike kills…
  • If using electrical traps such as Shotgun and SMG turrets, blade traps and more, be sure to put points into Intellect to gain experience from these kills. 5/5 in mechanical expertise gives a total of 50% of the Xp for just watching the traps do the job for you!
  • Upgrade everything periodically. The strongest blocks are steel upgraded from reinforced concrete. A fully upgraded block will cost at least 20 cement and 10 steel (86 stone, 200 iron scraps and 100 clay soil in raw ingredients).
  • If zombies can’t find a clear way to get to you, or if the path is too difficult to overcome, they will simply attack the walls and any supports you have to try and bring the building crashing down. Unless you have an external building supporting your base (eg. ***) then you are better off giving them a clear path to follow.
  • Some buildings make great bases if appropriately adapted. These include unfinished skyscrapers, apartment complexes, and military complexes. Use your imagination to create an appropriate base.
  • Plan ahead. Whether it’s plans to deal with cops, screamers, or mid-late game demolishers (they like to go ‘boom’ and destroy walls and traps alike…), there is no one solution. Check out the many Youtube videos on the topic for ideas and further tips!

3. Expansion ideas

  • Add a 2x2x2 moat and slope the sides to make it easy to walk into but steep to get out of. Fill with spikes (wooden or iron). Ring your base and add a bridge or two for you! Bonus points if you fill it with water (slows zombie movement) using a bucket.
  • Add electrical lights around the outside and inside that only light during hours of darkness using timed electrical relays
  • Set up external walls and ditches to force attacking hordes to pass through a network of traps. Bonus if you add iron bars over the top to fire down through. Double bonus for making iron cages to shoot at vultures easily.
  • Make a dedicated horde base away from your crafting areas. This might be a single level with traps and other defences, or a tower with layers of defences going up level by level. How long can you survive on a massive horde night with 64 zombies per wave?
  • Add ever greater rings of walls with layers of spikes between them and pillars to fire between. Hats off to Vedui for the inspirational videos showing this idea.
  • Build your base on a remote cliff with on access side. Burrow down into the rock and create your own underground factory and extensive defences from both above and below.
  • Build a helicopter/chopper pad on the roof of your base with a launch ramp to escape if the horde breaks through!
  • Build an underground escape tunnel with a getaway vehicle connected to another safe house and further defences!
  • Turn your base into a fortress with turrets, ramparts, murder holes, and use only wooden bows, crossbows, spears and other melee weapons to defend against the horde! Bonus points for building it to scale based on a real castle! Double bonus for using only stone blocks and no concrete or steel!

Role Playing and Weaponry

While absolutely not necessary to play the game, when starting a game for the second or third time, or just planning your build, it can be fun to approach it from a role playing perspective. This can be as a member of a team in multiplayer (essential on higher difficulties in the first weeks as each member is dependant on the others for survival), or as a solo character playing a particular style. Each role is my own invention for others to use as they will. I have allocated points up to level 40 without particular for books and schematics found in the world which add to the uniqueness of each character. Each character has a melee weapon and/or medium range firearm and/or long range weapon for a total of 2/3 per character.

1. The All Rounder

This is the one man, jack-of-all-trades, solo adventurer with his/her base of operations and a range of talents to go exploring, find food and trade and generally survive. Talents are in many skill sets to enable a variety of tasks to be performed as needed, and any tools needed to be made. A combo of shotguns and rifles takes advantage of the relative abundances of these munitions in the world and ease of fabrication, while the club backs them up, just in case…

  • Perception (3): Deadeye (2), Lockpicking (1), Animal Tracking (2), Lucky Looter (1), Salvage Operations (1).
  • Strength (5): Boomstick (3), Pummel Pete (3), Sexual Tyrannosaurus (4), Pack Mule (1), Miner 69’er (4), Mother Lode (4).
  • Fortitude (1): Living off the Land (1), Healing Factor (1), Rule 1 Cardio (1).
  • Intellect: (4): Advanced Engineering (2), Grease Monkey (1), Yeah Science (1).

2. The Base Builder

No fooling around for this guy/gal. Serious about building, mining, and crafting, the Base Builder heavily specialises in Intellect for crafting and a little in Strength to enhance resource acquisition. Predominantly armed with twin Scrap Turrets, backed up with a Shotgun and Sledgehammer, the Base Builder is a mean powerhouse of destruction that didn’t leave the welcome mat outside the door. Cross that bridge at your peril.

  • Strength (3): Boomstick (1), Skull Crusher (2), Sexual Tyrannosaurus (3), Miner 69’er (3), Mother Lode (3).
  • Fortitude (1): Living off the Land (1), Healing Factor (1),.
  • Intellect: (10): Turret Syndrome (5), Advanced Engineering (3), Yeah Science (2).

3. Ninja Assassin

Trained by the legendary masters of Japan before the war, the Ninja Assassin relies on Stealth, Blades, and Archery. Proficiency in long range fire arms is also encouraged for more challenging foes. With a heavy emphasis on the Agility skill tree, with select Perception perks for explosive effect, the Ninja Assassin’s primary mode of gaining experience is thorough contract clearing of buildings and package acquisition with high stakes. Lethal, but almost invisible, and ruthlessly fast, he/she is most hated by zombies. Silencers are recommended for all firearms.

  • Perception (3): Deadeye (2), Lockpicking (1), The Infiltrator (2), Animal Tracking (2), The Penetrator (2).
  • Fortitude (1): Living off the Land (1), Healing Factor (1).
  • Agility (7): Archery (3), Deep Cuts (3), Light Armour (3), Parkour (3), Hidden Strike (4), From the Shadows (3).
  • Intellect: (1): Advanced Engineering (1).

4. The Titan

Need a one man army? The Titan is here for the task. Be it pummelling zombies with fists of steel, or tearing into zombies with streams of bullets, this bit of bad news has come to Navezgame. The Titan balances Strength and Fortitude with heavy armour, insane health regen and stamina control. Add in a flaming sledgehammer for effect… Unleash the untamed beast!

  • Strength (5): Skull Crusher (3), Sexual Tyrannosaurus (4), Master Chef (1).
  • Fortitude (8): The Brawler (4), Machine Gunner (2), Living off the Land (1), Healing Factor (4), Rule 1 Cardio (4).
  • Agility (1): Flurry of Blows (1).
  • Intellect: (1): Advanced Engineering (1).

5. The Hunter-Gatherer

Falling back to the “caveman vs the world” approach, the Survivor places their trust in the wild. Paranoid and basic in their needs, hunter-gatherers have stuck with the basics because they work. Spears, Archery and occasionally a Club, the nomadic ways serve this survivor well in finding prey and lasting long after lesser men die of hunger and thirst in the wilds. In tribes, the hunter-gatherer uses rifles to bring down more prey with eagle-eyed precision and cook the most sumptuous meals to sustain the tribe.

  • Perception (5): Deadeye (3), Javelin Master (3), Animal Tracking (3).
  • Strength (3): Sexual Tyrannosaurus (3), Master Chef (2), Miner 69’er (1).
  • Fortitude (5): The Huntsman (3), Well Insulated (3) Living off the Land (3), Healing Factor (3), Rule 1 Cardio (2).
  • Agility (1): Archery (1), Hidden Strike (1).
  • Intellect: (1): Advanced Engineering (1).

6. The Urban Looter

A scavenger by nature, this creature excels in urban environments, ripping everything of value from home after home like a materialistic locust. While a parasitic entity by definition, this role doesn’t only destroy but produces essential components needed by others and himself to outfit a strong base. Armed primarily with a wrench (grade 6 if possible, and fully modded) as well as a shotgun and scrap turret, the Urban Looter can break into anywhere and take everything. Never the less, this character is more a lover than a fighter!

  • Perception (6): Lockpicking (1), Lucky Looter (4), Salvage Operations (3).
  • Strength (5): Boomstick (1), Sexual Tyrannosaurus (4), Miner 69’er (2).
  • Fortitude (1): Healing Factor (1).
  • Intellect: (6): Turret’s Syndrome (1), Advanced Engineering (2), Grease Monkey (1), Yeah Science (1).

7. The Quester

Living for the next great deed, and dedicated to uplifting the needs of the post-apocalyptic people, for a price of course. Questers journey from trader to trader taking on the most challenging of tasks for the greatest loot and glory and cash. From buried treasure to levels of slaughter that would quell most pirates, the Questers travel near and far to make the most of their calling. As such only the smartest and most fortuitous survive. Armed with stun batons, dual turrets, and long rifles, they are fearsome foes.

  • Perception (3): Deadeye (2), Lucky Looter (3), Salvage Operations (2).
  • Strength (1): Pack Mule (1), Master Chef (1), Miner 69’er (1).
  • Fortitude (1): Healing Factor (1).
  • Intellect: (10): Electrocutioner (1), Turret’s Syndrome (5), The Daring Adventurer (5), Advanced Engineering (2), Grease Monkey (3).

8. The Masters (Multiplayer Co-op only)

The ultimate leaders and traders, they make their mark pushing others to do better and be better, and make themselves richer doing so. Ultimately, The Master can only do so if others are around to enable their benefit, but alas, it is a lonely world. Eminently proud and reluctant to get their hands dirty, the masters employ a turret and .44 Revolver to handle any unpleasantness that comes to pass, as well as having the sweetest rides around, they are also medics and can sweet talk everything they need otherwise… The Master wears only fine suits.

  • Fortitude (1): Healing Factor (1).
  • Agility (3): Gunslinger (2).
  • Intellect: (10): Turret’s Syndrome (4), Better Barter (5), Charismatic Nature (4), Physician (5) Yeah Science! (4).


  1. Great job! My advice: in the beginning, when there is no place for loot (lead, paper, acid, etc.), I find a garbage container, a chest or just a big container and drop everything I need there later – this way you can examine a few more buildings.
    Just donโ€™t forget to put a mark on the map, otherwise forget where you hid the loot is very easy, believe my experience ๐Ÿ™‚
    (This method is best used in single player or in coop, when you can trust other players)
    It will not be amiss during travel to mark ore deposits on the map with a cross. It takes literally 5 seconds to mark it, but in the future it will save a lot of time searching for minerals.

  2. This is awesome guide for a beginner, pretty much everything they would need from a guide.
    You could only improve this guide by adding screenshots of example buildings and trap layout/planning to appropriate sections and a section to cover types of zombies, their abilities and how to deal with them most effectively.

  3. This is such an awesome guide, you made getting into the game without ragequiting so much easier! thank you!

  4. Thank you, wish I had read this earlier while playing! I hope you will update this once Alpha 19 hits, as some of the things mentioned here have been nerfed.
    p.s.: It’s “hone in”, not “home in”…. confusing when I first read it and thought you meant I had to be in my base LOL.

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