The Walking Dead: No Man's Land Wiki
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The Newcomers Guide[]

This guide is written to help those who are just starting out.

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Part 0: The TL:DR Summary[]

This guide will give you everything you need to get the best possible start to the game. There is, however, a bit of ground to cover, so it might be wise to digest it in parts over the first few weeks of your gameplay. So here's the TL:DR so you don't do anything you might regret later:

  1. Don't unlock any heroes except some very few key ones.
  2. Don't buy things with money or gold.
  3. Prioritize levelling up and upgrading the buildings in your camp.
  4. When you can, join a good guild.
  5. Always play Last Stand and the Distance to get support tokens and badge components.
  6. Read up on walker movement mechanics to avoid unnecessary hospital time.

Part 1: From Zero to Hero[]

0. How much does this game cost?[]

A free-to-play game obviously always wants you to spend as much real money as possible, and everyone is free to decide how much they want to spend. But unless you are in a hurry you can manage with a quite low investment of real money, or even none. There are basically three things you can spend real money on.

  1. The survival pass. There are two kinds of survival passes. One low-price, short-duration, pass for new players, focused on building your base, and the "real" survival pass, aimed at veteran players. Both passes are good value for money, and it's definitely worth while buying it, especially if it has particularly good gear as reward. Check out the discord server to get the community consensus when a new survival pass season starts.
  2. Bundle weapons. There will always be a selection of special weapons available for sale. You should really only start looking at these when you are close to max level, as a paid weapon needs to be upgraded with a huge amount of XP and reinforcement tokens, if you buy it at a low level. Check out the Best Weapons Right Now page to know which ones are the "must buys". If you want to reach round 90 in the challenge or Breeze through the Distance and Guild Wars maps, you really need to invest in a couple of the best weapons. This means that to be able to be in the top you're looking at an investment of as little as around $ 30-40 plus the $15 survival pass once every 3 months or so.
  3. Speeding up your progress. This is the part you can spend most money on; buying full supplies & XP, buying gas boosters, buying radio bundles, tools, gold, reroll tokens and badge components. This is purely optional, and all of these resources you can also get for free simply by playing - but obviously it will take a lot more time. Remember that this game is 8 years old, and many players have been playing since the start, so it's completely fine to see this as a long haul and not expect to be in the top 100 in the first year. Or put in the money and catch up on all those old-timers.

0.1 What Bugs Do I Need to Know About?

The ever developing game always suffer from various bugs. Most of them are small ones, but there's a few ones you need to be aware of as a starting player. Check out this page for a listing of the various bugs currently in the game.

  • Don't join guilds that only have very few members, unless you know it's an active guild. There is a bug that some guilds with only inactive players will be without a guild Leader completely. This makes it impossible for you to leave the guild, as every guild must have a leader, and if you end up in such a guild the only way to leave it is to contact in-game support. If you get auto-promoted to leader, you can first promote someone else to leader and then leave.
  • In some rare cases, mainly in Last Stand, you can end up in a endless loop of the game immediately reloading after starting the game. In this case you can try to really quickly click on the Flee button and then also quickly Confirm to leave the mission and quit the reloading loop. This might require several reloads. If this doesn't work, contact support by email or by posting a bug report on the Discord server.

1. Do not unlock too many heroes.

It will be very tempting to unlock all the heroes you get as soon as possible. There is a very noticable icon showing you have heroes waiting to be unlocked, and obviously you want to play with your favorite characters from The Walking Dead show. But be patient here and just let them wait until you are ready!

The reason for this is that Heroes are unlocked at the highest level of any one of your survivors, regardless of the survivor class. So if you have any one survivor at lvl 31, all heroes that you unlock will unlock at lvl 31. If you had unlocked them already at lvl 10 or 15, you will need to use A LOT of XP to eventually upgrade them to lvl 31. By only unlocking them late, you will save millions of XP. It's also worth noting that many game modes scale up with your level (Guild Wars and Scavenge is based on your higest survivor levels, and Challenge scales up until lvl 24), so if your go-to team is at lvl 25, a Hero at lvl 22 will be almost useless. So only unlock a few key heroes at first, and save the unlocking of most heroes to much later.

Also note: Gear from the Shops unlocks at the highest level of any survivor of this class, that the gear belongs to. So, whenever there are special weapons from campaign / Guild Wars (GW) you want to claim, it is best to get at least one survivor from that class to the highest level possible before you claim it. Also, it may be possible to unlock a new survivor (which will unlock at the same level as your highest level survivor) in the same class of the gear you want to claim—just before claiming the gear.

What if you are reading this guide and—oops—you have already unlocked numerous heroes? Basically, it's judgment call. If you are only at survivor level 15, starting a new account is always an option. It might be easier and faster long term. If you are at survivor level 21 and have 10 heroes unlocked—no sweat. Keep on reading. If you have, say 20 heroes unlocked, and you're at survivor level 18—that will be a judgment call.

Note that there are “heroes” and there are “regular survivors”. You are welcome to unlock, train, and dump regular survivors all the time. “Heroes” once unlocked, stay with you, and you are going to have to train them with XP eventually. Note that regular survivors need survivor slots (and you can buy more with gold), while Heroes will always get a free slot, so you don't have to buy slots for your heroes.

So this is the current team recommendation. You can probably unlock a few more if you notice your XP fills up faster than you can use it (depending on how quickly you can farm tomatoes):

  • Unlock Pizza Guy Glenn, Governor & Hunter Maggie as a farming team as soon as possible. Note, however, that you shouldn't spend radios on calling these, just buy their tokens in the Trade Goods shop, play the Story and Season missions, and do other game modes and tasks which give Hero tokens.
  • Unlock Connie/Mercer/Yumiko at lvl 18 for Guild Wars. Use your radios to make calls for these, when there are good 40/55 radio calls available.
  • Unlock Ezekiel and Tyreese or Magna at around lvl 24 for the Challenge. A good melee team will help you get further in the challenge.
  • Unlock everyone else at lvl 31.

2. Hoard everything: gold, tools, weapons, tokens, radios, everything.

Never buy anything until much later. Not for gold, not for $. At higher levels it might also make sense to buy a "Full supplies" bundle, when there is a good deal on it.

Don't ever scrap any gear. Every time you log into the game, it will automatically scrap all gear of common, uncommon and rare rarity (grey, brown, green) if you have more than 300 items, but there is no limit to how many epic and legendary (blue and gold) items you can have, so keep everything. Note! Upgrade one armor with gold training gear of the lowest possible level for your farming team. This will give a nice boost to the XP you earn from kills, without costing a lot of XP. Do not upgrade these armors later, just keep them at their low levels as the trait works just as well. When there is a 2 x XP event, scrap all unnecessary gear for double XP.

3. Prioritize upgrading the buildings in your camp

If you play all game modes casually, it should be enough to level up quickly. Only when there is a Tomato Monday event, it could be valuable to prioritize playing Scavenge Missions. During Tomato Monday all supplied rewards are doubled. It might be worthwhile to buy a gas booster at this time to run a lot of supplies missions with the Governor. Gas boosters can be bought with money, or from the Black Market. There will also be free gas boosters from time to time (for example always when there is a game update).

  • You should focus on getting tomatoes. Upgrade the Council, Training Grounds and Workshop always when you can, but quite often you will notice that you will need to build or upgrade other buildings before you can continue upgrading these buildings.

But what about the Outpost? Well, what about it? The answer is that the Outpost and the Walker Pit are the least important buildings and game mode in the game. You need to eventually build them to be able to level up, but there is absolutely no need to spend any more resources than the minimum possible on them.

4. Prioritize XP for training up your favorite heroes before anything else.

Use Governor—XP Maggie—PGG for Scavenging missions. Do this quickly like 3–4 times a day until you run out of gas. There are other more optimized farming methods, but trust me, this method is the most time-efficient.

Use your XP to upgrade your heroes. When you have more XP than you need, only then you should use them for upgrading gear. Gear needs to be upgraded 3 times to unlock all their traits. It is also possible to keep upgrading the gear to higher levels using Reinforcement tokens, and this can make sense for a few select weapons - especially if you have got your hands on some premium weapons (from Seasonal Campaigns, the Guild Wars shop or by buying with money). You will eventually get a lot of Reinforcement tokens so don't worry about spending them.

Note that the 3 traits (and possible special functionality) is the most important part of a piece of gear! The level of the gear only increased damage / health so good gear will be quite useful even if not at max level. Avoid upgrading regular survivors or using reroll tokens on them.

Note that Season Mission 11A1 is perfect for XP farming. It spawns a few armored walkers every round, so you can quickly rack up a lot of XP (as Armored walkers give much more XP than regular walkers). So be sure to never fully complete this season mission (as it will then close permanently)! Play it until you reach the fifth and final mission, but then always Flee after killing 100 walkers in the mission (you only get XP for the first 100 kills). You can then repeat it indefinitely. If possible, use XP Maggie, Pizza Glenn and a pawn (which you sacrifice when Fleeing the mission) using Training Gear to maximize the points you get. If needed you can scrap the pawn and call for a new one using the free 1 star call. That way you don't clog up your hospital.

Some milestones:

  • Level 12: You should be able to finish Chapter 9 to unlock all classes
  • Level 15: You should be able to beat Distance Normal mode (Connie in lead)
  • Level 20: You can start considering buying weapons from Black Market. You should now be able to farm season mission 11A1.
  • Level 24: You can get far in or even finish the Challenge

5. Occasionally, there are special radio calls, costs 40/55 radios, which will give you the best heroes.

The best heroes are: Mercer, Connie, Yumiko, Ezekiel and either Tyreese or Magna. When they put these heroes together on those 40/55 radios call plus no more than 2-3 other junk (those not mentioned here), you can start spending your radios.

How to get more radios? The best way is to play the Challenge in a good guild. See the section on guilds lower down in this guide.

6. Start making good badges when you get Craftsman level 2

Badges will significantly improve a Hero's base traits like Damage or Health and are essential to beat high level walkers. Badges are created by merging badge components and fragments, which can be found randomly in post-mission crates, as challenge rewards, and most importantly as rewards in the Distance. Badges can be of five rarities (similarly to equipment), and eventually you will only make gold badges.

The Craftsman is a building which allows you to make badges. It unlocks at lvl 1 and can later be upgraded to level 2. Store all of your gold components and most of your blue components until you reach Craftsman Level 2. Also hoard all your level 1 components—they are useless now but will be very useful later.  Craftsman level 1 allows you to begin crafting badges, while Craftsman level 2 allows you to craft better badges than Craftsman level 1. Start making Blue and Gold badges once you get to Craftsman level 2. There is a section on Badges lower down with more info.

7. Once you decide you want to properly “play” the game, you can start building up your heroes and weapons, beginning with the so-called CMY (Connie Mercer Yumiko) or SMY (Sasha Mercer Yumiko).

Check out the Hero section of this wiki to find the best heroes and their recommended traits and how to use them.

8. Always Play Distance and Last Stand

As soon as you can, you should always play the Distance and Last Stand. Start with Normal mode and change to a higher difficulty when you can reach half-way through in the harder Distance and Wave 20 in Last Stand's Expert Mode. The rewards in these game modes are very good.

9. What About the Challenge?

The Challenge is the most important game mode for high level players, and will give a large amount of radios. When still in the building phase, play the challenge as far as you get, but don't spend money healing your team or retrying the same mission over and over. Note that at high difficulty challenge will give you better rewards than Scavenge, so you can also farm challenge missions.


Part 2: Guilds, Family, and Guild Families[]

Some players stay with their guild for years; even those who don't, might stay in the guild chat and stay friends.

You have 2 main reasons to stay with a guild: resources and chemistry.

Resources such as Trade Goods and Radios are vital to your development. All guild members will can get a lot of Trade Goods and Radios as guild rewards from the Challenge, and being in a good guild will also unlock all Guild War Shop items. And chemistry is significant; many players gel with their guilds like a second family. You should balance both. There are standalone guilds, and then there are guild families, with several guilds more or less loosely connected. As the in-game chat is severely limited, all serious guilds will use an external app for communication. Many now use Discord, but other popular apps are LINE, Whatsapp, Messenger and Telegram.

As you grow, you can move into guilds within the same family, or you can always try out other guilds too. Generally speaking, there are more guilds with incomplete members than there are players looking for guilds, so don't be afraid to ask around. Check out the official Discord server (link to it can be found in-game), it has a channel called Guild-recruiting, with guilds marketing themselves.

Remember, as you grow you can and should move to better and better guilds. Don't stick around in a guild where you give much more than what you receive. As a new player you should not be afraid to shop around to see which guild suits you best at any given time.

Finally a warning: if you join a random guild, check their current challenge stars, and if that amount is low and/or it has only few members, DO NOT join it. There is a bug where many non-active guilds will have no guild Leader. If you join a guild without a leader, it's not possible to leave it (the game will prompt you to first desginate a Leader, but as a normal member you can't do it). In this case, you need to contact in-game support to have them kick you from the guild or preferably, promote you to leader so you can then promote someone else to leader and then leave. I therefore strongly recommend to check the guild-recruitment channel and join one of the guilds promoting themselves there.

Part 3: “Crate” Weapons and Armors[]

In the current meta, there are a huge amount of special weapons, and new ones are introduced in Season Token campaigns regularly, and as Guild Wars rewards. Additionally there will always be bundles with special weapons available for real money. The Survival Pass will often be the best investment for real money, but it's always good to check out the community consensus about the Survival Pass on the Discord server before investing. Check out this page for info on the best premium weapons.

Special Weapons are usually far better than any weapon you can find from crates, and you will notice rather quickly that all the normal weapons just aren't up to par with the special weapons. For armor it's slightly different, and it makes sense to upgrade good crate armors. Without special weapons it is basically impossible to get the max score or be in the top of any game mode, so if you want to be competitive you will eventually have to buy a few weapons.

Note that similarly to heroes, weapons will unlock at the level of the highest survivor of that class, so weapons that you unlocked before reaching max level will require a lot of XP (and Reinforcement tokens) to upgrade, if you unlock them at lower levels - so unlock weapons from the Season campaigns, Survival Pass and Guild Wars shop as late as possible!

There is no limit to how many blue and gold weapons and armor you can have (the 300 limit is for 1-3 star gear only) so do save all of them and consider upgrading them if they do have unicorn traits. The only time you should manually scrap anything is when you are on a 2 x XP booster and want to scrap a lot of unneeded gear.

But as you are on your way to max levels, it makes sense to rely on gear that you get from crates.

Unicorn Ranged Weapon

  • silver / gold Lucky + gold Cripple, third trait can be Piercing, Incendiary or Extended range or Wide barrel / Wide spread

Cripple is the best trait for ranged weapon, but it shouldn't be combined with piercing. Gold cripple should be the 1st priority, with lucky the 2nd priority. You will not have any difficulties at all clearing out enemies up to level +5 with proper badges. So, the "real game" begins at level +5 when all your attacks are body shots. But this also means that a gold cripple gun will almost always result in crippled enemy. A gun with gold cripple and at least 2x lucky traits (this can be on the weapon, on the armor, or on the survivor) will always result in a crippled enemy (note: if your lucky trait level is still too low it might not be 100%, but should be 99% or so). Also, an enemy that is hit by a crippling overwatch attack will not attack. This is another reason why a crippling weapon is critical, and with Primed on your armor you are able to both shoot in your turn and have a good chance of still getting an additional overwatch attack during the walker turn. Incendiary is quite good as burning walkers get 10% of their base health in damage every round, and extra range or wider spread is obviously always quite useful.

Unicorn Bruiser Weapon

  • silver / gold concussion + silver / gold lucky + gold razor or interrupt

Another useful trait for bruisers is interrupt, so perhaps a combination of concussion, razor, and lucky or interrupt is also good. However, soon enough you'd want to buy a Morgan Staff or Hockey Stick at the Black Market, which would have all these traits (but better because they make 3-space arc). A body shot hit will not stun a walker, so you need either Razor (which reduces body shot hits by 45%) or Weakening (which is a survivor trait), as hits on Weakened walkers are never body shots. Note that bruisers generally do quite low damage, so damage-increasing traits like Lethal or Destructive aren't so useful.

Unicorn Scout / Warrior Weapon

  • silver / gold lucky + silver / gold razor
  • gold wide arc for warriors
  • gold threat reduction for scouts

Ranged classes (armor)

  • Unicorn: silver tactical + gold primed + gold ruthless. Tactical allows you to shoot and then do a quick move, Primed will often give you another attack on the walker turn and Ruthless will greatly increase charge damage.
  • Some weapons have tactical, in this case the third trait can be anything
  • Remember to save one low-level armor with gold training gear for your farming runs

Melee classes (armors)

  • You want Gold Primed, Ruthless and Hazard Suit, and silver tactical. For bruisers replace Ruthless with Dodge.
    • Hazard Suit is needed if you are going to hit burning enemies, as this will always cause you some fire damage, and without hazard suit this will be significant. If there aren't burning walkers and you don't use incendiary weapons, prioritize Ruthless.
  • Remember to save one low-level armor with gold training gear for your farming runs

Note that all unicorn armors are useful at any level. Upgrading an armor with reinforcement tokens will only give a health boost, and as you generally don't want to get hit in the first place that boost will be of very limited value. The only exception might be a unicorn bruiser armor, if you use bruisers as meat shields to take some hits.

Unicorns are pretty rare, so at the beginning you will have to make do with something almost a unicorn, but not quite.

Part 4: Badges[]

I will not talk at length about how to craft badges as the best, most complete, and most up-to-date instruction and map on how to craft badges is available on the community discord server, having been perfected for years by paste and NatsuDark and few others at the community. But here is the gist.

Badges are made in the craftsman building by spending components and fragments. By using a special recipe (shown on the crafting screen) you can try to make a badge of a certain type (for example a Damage badge), with the chance being 100% if using gold components. Otherwise you will get a random badge.

The bonus and the slot of the badge is not completely random, but depends on where on the crafting map you are. This is not shown in any way in-game, but if you keep track of your crafting, you will be able to craft at certain locations, increasing your chances of getting a badge with a good bonus and being in a wanted slot. It makes a lot of sense to understand how this works, but requires some dedication so better to postpone this until you have a good stash of gold components. Check out the badges section for more info.

1. In the early game, badges are the most important thing that helps you stay alive and punch (kill) above your level. Craft as many badge as you can as soon as you have Craftsman Level 1, but save all your gold components until you have Craftsman Level 2. When you start to get close to Craftsman Level 2 (say 2–3 levels below), start saving your blue components as well.

Generally speaking, an assault with 3x green-blue damage badges can mop down +1 level enemies without upgraded weapons. Combining two such assaults can help you mop down +3 level enemies = by having one hits after the other. So with reasonably good badges, you can use 2 assaults to do quick tomato scavenging. And if your badges are borderline, you can also combine one assault with one hunter (say, Governor-Daryl-PGG team on scavenging missions).

2. Generally speaking, each survivor should be badged either:

Offensively = 3x Damage (D) badges + 3x Critical Damage (CD) badges or Defensively = 3x Damage Reduction (DR) badges + 3x Health (H) badges. In general, all classes except bruisers should be badged offensively (and Fighter Rosita as well). Your Guild Wars PvP attackers should also be badged defensively.

Try also to only put badges of the same set on your heroes - i.e. only put badges of Set A on one hero, only Set B on another and so on. When you craft more badges it will be much easier to see which hero to put the fresh badge on, if you can filter heroes by set.

Also, you've noticed that the 5th kind of badges: Critical Chance (CC) is rarely useful. Why? In short, because once you have guaranteed body shots (at level +5 approximately), you'd also have 0% critical chance. At higher level it could be strategic for some heroes to use razor / piercing weapons or weakening traits to reduce body shots and therefore can use CC badges, but this is discussion for a much later time.

3. In the early game, Damage badges are most important. It will help you clear maps up to 3 levels above your survivor level with little efforts. I did say that mixing badges is generally bad, but in the early game (when you just unlocked Craftsman Level 1), I would recommend you to put 3x D badges on everyone. The other 3 can be any other combination. Don't worry, NG usually gives out free badge removal event every other month, so you can fix and redo everyone's badge every other month.

4. Never reroll badge trait bonus, and in general do not reroll your badges at all. Reroll tokens in early games are far too valuable for this.

Part 5: Survivor Traits[]

In the current meta it's all about the Heroes. The regular survivors that you get from radio calls and as rewards from the chapter missions will eventually be of no use at all, so don't spend resources on them. Use the free calls that you get to pick up survivors, and save any good ones you get, but your focus should be on the heroes.

After a survivor (with survivor meaning either a regular survivor or a Hero) reaches legendary status, all their traits will have been unlocked. At this point it's possible to reroll any undesired trait to a better one (Leader Traits can't be rerolled). Rerolling traits will be important; but also the most expensive, because reroll tokens will end up to be the rarest commodity, and you really need a lot of it.

For new players, the so-called CMY/CPY/SMY team (Connie-Princess/Mercer-Yumiko, before Connie people used Sasha) will be your most important team. Thereafter, you can add a melee team centered around Ezekiel and Tyreese or Magna. Spend your reroll tokens on these first, and then on second-tier heroes. Note also that it's slightly cheaper to reroll the traits when the trait is at a lower level, so if possible, do that before upgrading them to more pink stars - but do upgrade the trait levels if you are out of reroll tokens, as the extra cost is not that huge. This wiki has pages on every hero with recommended traits so check those out!

The most important trait for all melee heroes is Weakening. Start off by rerolling that trait onto all your key melee heroes.

After that focus on getting Lucky to your team working with Connie/Sasha. This trait combined with a lucky-crippling shooter weapon will provide guaranteed cripple against high-level enemies. On Assaults, lucky trait combined with lucky armor and lucky weapon will provide a 95-98% chance of concussions. On Connie and Sasha, lucky improves the chance of her traits activating (although it is a lot less important now that she could use a lucky-primed armor).

The Radio Tent gives us free calls to get new survivors (and they will accumulate if you don't use them so no need to call every day), and unlike reroll tokens, these calls are relatively "cheap". That means you can keep calling new survivors, upgrade them if they have good traits, then trash them again if the traits are bad. You can keep doing this, and once in a blue moon you'll end up with some “unicorn” survivors. These unicorn survivors might perform better than some heroes, and they cost zero reroll tokens! You can buy class tokens in the Trade goods shop, and you will also get some from the Distance and daily quests.

Examples of unicorn / semi unicorn survivors (traits in brackets are nice to have):

Bruisers = Punish + Weakening + Perseverance (+ Lucky + Dodge)

Warriors = Weakening + Power Strike + Ruthless (+ 2 out of 3 of Lucky / Perseverance / Strong). Perseverance is like a weaker version of Weakening so use that if you can't find Weakening.

Hunters = Lucky + Critical Aim (+ Sure Shot + Marksman + Ruthless) = often useful in Last Stand

For defensive or mixed-defensive survivors, Iron Skin (IS) can be a great addition at mid-level when you don't yet have enough badges to create 80% DR with badges alone. I won't discuss this in depth because eventually, you should be able to "grow out" of IS dependence, and use your trait slot for something more useful. And therefore- I also would not purposefully use my scarce reroll tokens just to get IS traits. But if it is already there, or if somehow it is offered while you were rerolling for some other traits—you could definitely consider it for temporary use.

Part 6: Radio Calls[]

Many Heroes start off being just average, and only when you upgrade their Leader Trait to level 7 or higher they really start to shine. To do that you need to use a huge amount of radios, so be sure to spend them in the most optimal way possible. Many players will wait for months for a good call before burning all their radios. Check out the entry on Radios to see the return on the different types of calls.

Generally speaking, the 55 radio calls are the best deals, with 40 calls coming in second. But obviously, they all depend on who are in the calls—whether you need them or not, so burn your radios when most heroes in the pool consists of heroes that you want. Here's a list of heroes you should focus on:

ASSAULT CLASS

  1. Mercer (should be quite the consensus here). Probably hands down, with no controversy, the one hero needs to be leveled up as fast as you can. This should be #1 on the overall list too.
  2. Princess. I find her to work well enough already at LT 7, and at LT 8 that is just an icing on the cake. Mercer needs a relatively high LT to really shine, while Princess is good also with a lower LT.
  3. Rosita but don't burn a lot of radios on her as she really needs no leveling up. You might need to reroll lucky trait on her though (to get guaranteed cripple on RAR).

SHOOTER CLASS

  1. Yumiko. She's great out of the box so don't go out of your way to upgrade her.
  2. Quinn. Very good damage dealer.
  3. Hilltop Maggie (HMaggie). Sometimes useful in maps with many specials (including Exploder Walkers).

HUNTER CLASS

  1. Sasha Her LT is good enough to make good out of bad at LT 7. And with as many calls we have involving Sasha, even new players will get to LT 7 fairly quickly.
  2. Guardian Carol. With the Star Hero meta, she's far more useful than Sasha in challenge. So normally, I would even put her at no. 1 for hunters, but, to be fair to those who don't yet have Sasha at LT 7, probably Sasha should be the priority here.

WARRIOR CLASS

  1. Ezekiel. Even with Tyreese, I think that Ezekiel is still going to be the no. 1 warrior. His LT is super useful as it allows you to thwart at least 1 extra attack, and is probably the preferred warrior once you reach round 60+ in challenge. However, I have found myself that these days almost all warriors work quite well, and you can cycle through pretty much through all of them.
  2. Tyreese. The circles work great on lots of maps so he's a contender for the no 1 place.
  3. Magna. Magna is similar to Tyreese but needs to be about 3 pink stars or better to really shine, while Tyreese is good from the get-go.

BRUISER CLASS

  1. Fighter Rosita. Need we say more?
  2. There is no number 2 as the Bruiser class currently is quite underwhelming. Eugene work well for PvP and Riot Gear Glenn can be useful to get your team charged at the start of the mission, but each of these require a lot of pink stars to really shine, and shouldn't be your priority at the building stage.

SCOUT CLASS

  1. Connie. Connie is the best scout thanks to her fantastic LT trait.
  2. Outlaw Negan. His LT is also great through its ability to generate charge points as well as adding a lot of damage.
  3. Special mention: Pizza Guy Glenn. Because he can open boxes. His box opening trait works the same regardless of level. For farming supplies it obviously helps a little if his LT is of a higher level, but this should definitely not be a priority.

Part 7: Key concepts[]

1. Threat

A lot of maps will have a threat counter, with a bar at the bottom showing how many walkers will spawn after a certain amount of turns (usually every 2-5 turns). The threat counter will reset to a mission-dependent base amount (usually 2-4) after each threat spawn. Attacks with ranged weapons will alert nearby walkers, normally increasing the the threat amount by 1 for each attack (although there are many silent weapons, and the shooter charge attack also doesn't increase threat). Melee attacks don't increase the threat, and if the weapon has the threat reduction trait, it can decrease the threat even to zero. In such a case, no walkers will spawn when the counter reaches zero. Using threat reduction can be a useful tactic on many maps, although on high difficulty levels you usually can't kill walkers fast enough to offset the threat counter.

2. Body Shots

HIts can be either Normal hits, Critical Hits (deal extra damage) or Body Shots. When walkers become clearly higher in level than your survivor, you start to get body shots, and when the level difference is high enough, all normal hits will always be body shots. When the level difference is 5 of higher, the chance of a body shot is 100%. Body Shots do less damage, will not stun, and have some other limitations as well. There are however also some traits that require body shots to work, mainly Cripple and Sasha's LT. The game really starts only when in body shot territory so be sure to adjust your gameplay for this. Note that charge attacks are always guaranteed Critical Hits, which is why they are so powerful.

3. Lucky

Lucky traits can be equipped in (1) survivor, (2) weapon, (3) special armors. All these lucky traits stack: you just add them up then multiply with the trait. Lucky traits are often significant because often there is a huge difference between having certain traits to activate 100% of the time, or 99% of the time, or 97% of the time.

Example:

Gold cripple has 75% chance of activation on body shots. You have a Silver lucky weapon (15%) and Lucky trait at lvl 5 (18%).

Chance for Cripple = 75% x (1+0.15+0.18) = 75% x 1.33 = 99.75%. This is not enough to guarantee cripple every single time.

4. Cripple & interrupting

Gold cripple + 2 x lucky with pink stars = guaranteed cripple on body shots. This is why the lucky trait is significant in all shooters and assaults (see above discussion on survivor traits). Exact amount of lucky traits you must compute yourself—it is right around 34% (silver lucky + 18-20% survivor lucky trait)

Note that the piercing weapon trait will negate the guarantee crippling so avoid weapons with piercing if you want guarantee cripple (or Alpha as leader).

This sounds like a bug, it probably is a bug, but probably won't get "fixed" anytime soon = crippling shots on overwatch / primed / pretaliate will result in interrupt. Note that primed / overwatch requires at least one-step movement, but Ezekiel's pretaliate doesn't.

On assaults' cripple, all enemies sprayed by crippling shots will be interrupted (no movement). In other words, one enemy will make 1 move and the rest will be "frozen".

This also works with Rooting, although there are much less chances of a guaranteed root.

5. "Fire-bug”

If you shoot a raider / PVP humans and burn them leaving them with 1 HP, they will die at the end of the turn (won't be able to further attack).

For this to happen, fire burn must be inflicted on the shot that brings down the raider / humans to 1 HP, not the previous shot. Therefore, this is more likely to happen on charged attack, although a normal attack can also do the same if it inflicts enough damage to bring the raider / human to 1 HP.

6. Concussion

In many maps on star hero-Yumiko-Princess team, you must control 2 sides of walkers. This is only possible when you inflict concussion stuns (2 turns). Lucky Decimator + lucky armor + lucky survivor trait allows you to get to 97-98% concussion rate.

7. Supports, Tools and Heirlooms

By Playing Last Stand and buy collecting from the Survival Pass you will be able to unlock and upgrade the Supports Dog, Shiva, Mask, Mike and Cookies. You can equip one support on each team member, so you have to select which three to bring into the mission. Inside the mission, each support can be used once, but they do not otherwise deplete, so don't be afraid to use the supports as much as possible.

Tools (Grenades, Medkits, Blast Grenades, Flares and Gore), on the other hand, are consumables, and each use will deplete your inventory. Tools can be obtained from the daily tasks, the Distance and as Challenge, GW and Last Stand rewards. Tools are good to help you pass that one hard mission, but often it makes sense to just stop there and come back when your survivors and gear is stronger.

In the Challenge you will collect strange looking tokens, which are needed to unlock Heirlooms. Heirlooms are basically an extra leader trait for some otherwise less useful Heroes, but you also need a lot of hero tokens to make them useful so don't worry about Heirlooms for now.

Part 8: Movement Mechanics[]

Here is a shortened version of the key movement mechanics. Check this link for the exact description. Mastering walker movement is the key to mastering this game.

Walkers will be in any of 3 states in the game. At the start of the mission they will either be Unaware (in which case they don't move at all) or the more common Wandering (when they walk around randomly). When you get close enough to them or shoot at them, they will become Aggressive. Also all walkers that enter the map via the threat counter will be Aggressive. Other walkers that spawn might spawn in either condition.

Unaware and wandering walkers will not attack. However, if a wandering walker ends up next to your Hero, and your hero attacks it with an overwatch attack, it WILL attack. So if you use an armor with the Primed trait, it is a good idea to use a weapon with guaranteed interrupt (like the Skeggox, Mercer's Axe or Pouvoir Flag).

Aggressive walkers will move towards the closest target using the shortest way. They will not make detours, so often walkers will end up in a big queue as walkers in front block the way, but the ones longer back not willing to walk around to flank their targets.

Walkers move one-by-one , with the walker closest to any human moving first. This includes survivors on camouflage such as with gore or Walker Mike. The table below shows the distance calculation, with the target survivor being in the middle (X). So a walker 4 steps directly to the side of a survivor will be at distance 9, while a survivor being 3 steps away in a straight diagonal line will be at distance 11 - meaning that the walker at distance 9 will move first, and will move towards the survivor to the side, and not being able to reach it.

Distance Chart


If one walker has equal distance to multiple survivors, the walker will prioritize on portrait order (the order you put your survivors on mission selection, so the leader is priority one).

Once a walker is about to move, it will lock in to a "chosen survivor" based on the distance and portrait order. Then it will move towards that chosen survivor, preferring straight line over diagonal. If that walker reaches a tile next to its chosen survivor, it will attack. Note that if that tile is also adjacent to another survivor which is higher on portrait order, it will attack the survivor that is higher on portrait order.

If the walker doesn't reach a tile next to its chosen survivor, it will not attack, even if it ends its move on a tile next to another one of your survivors or raiders that is not its chosen one. This can often happen if the front tiles of a survivor are already occupied by other walkers.

If the walker cannot possibly reach the target due to a blocking obstacle (for example the survivor being behind a closed fence), it will move around randomly. Other walkers are not considered "blocking" obstacles and generally means that walkers will tend to form a queue towards target. There are some exceptions to this, but generally this is the case.

Therefore, some tricks that you can play:

1. You can position your survivors to induce the next walker to move according to these rules, and use it to your advantage (such inducing a 2 walkers stun using a morning star on overwatch when one walker makes movement)

2. Position a survivor next to a walker but separated by a fence = this walker will never reach that closest survivor due to the wall, and will not attack other survivors when in range. If that survivor is completely blocked by blocking obstacles, the walkers will wander.

3. You can induce all walkers to queue in one direction, leaving a clear path to dash through a different alley.

Part 9: The Different Game Modes[]

Some of the game modes will unlock only when you reach a certain council level, but if you follow this guide that will happen soon enough.

As with all mobile games of this type, all game modes are completely optional so feel free to play any mode that interests you. Here's the quick breakdown of the different game modes with links to more detailed descriptions of them.

  1. The Chapter Missions. This is the tutorial as well as "Campaign" mode, with a linear storyline. There will be also be a icon on the campfire urging you to play these missions. It's a good idea to play these missions, as they are fun and give decent rewards, but there is absolutely no hurry to do them, so if you keep failing on a mission just leave it be and come back to it later when your survivors are stronger. Note that if you play through the Chapter missions quickly you can get new survivors several levels higher than your other survivors. This will increase the difficulty of for example Scavenge missions, so be sure to scrap such survivors. Once you've finished a chapter it will be closed forever.
  2. The Season Missions. These are standalone missions loosely based around the TV show episodes. Similarly to the chapter missions, do these for good rewards and low gas cost, but don't stress it. New Season Missions are launched as new TV episodes launch, and if you play the current mission before the week ends you'll get an extra reward. Note that season mission 11A1 is great for farming so don't complete that one.
  3. Scavenge. These are farming missions, giving you Tomatoes, XP or gear. They are fairly expensive gas-wise, so play these when you have extra gas and/or have bought a gas booster. There's an easy and hard mode, with the hard mode giving slightly better rewards, so play the hard version if you can beat it without getting damaged.
  4. The Distance. The Distance is reset weekly on Modays and has three difficulty levels. The Distance is the best game mode for collecting badge components and tools. The easiest mode also gives a fair amount of tomatoes.
  5. The Challenge. The Challenge runs Wed-Mon, with a different mapset and star hero weekly. The challenge is the best mode for collecting radios.
  6. Guild Wars. Guild Wars run as 2+2 week seasons with a a few weeks break in between. Be sure to check with your guild what they expect from you in GW. As a new player pay particular attention to the difference in pink stars when playing against human enemies, and don't be afraid to ask to switch missions if you notice a particularly strong PvP defender team. Remember that you can click on the defending player's name to see the exact details of the defending team.
  7. Last Stand. Last Stand has two difficulty modes, and run weekly like the Distance. Last Stand is the best game mode for collecting support tokens.
  8. Outpost. In the outpost you raid the camp of other players. Some players have quite strong defenses, so only play this game mode when you can afford some hospital time. The outpost is good if you need to collect trade goods.

Part 10: From Beginner to Expert[]

Your journey as a beginner ends when you decide to start playing the game "properly", i.e. focusing less on the building stage and instead focusing on getting as far as possible in the Challenge, playing the max islands in GW without red gassing, cruising through Nightmare Distance and trying to get a good ranking in Last Stand. For this you obviously want your heroes to be of as high level as possible and having as many of them as possible (especially if you want to use the Star Hero in the Challenge), but there are some key things which make winning hard missions so much easier.

  • Make sure your key heroes have been rerolled to have the best possible traits (see the Heroes section)
  • Get your key heroes to 3 pink stars or higher.
  • You want Carol's Cookies at lvl 3, when its duration increases to 2 turns. This has a huge impact on Mercer's effectiveness.
  • You want Walker Mike at lvl 2, which allows another survivor to also get Miked.
  • You need premium weapons - either by collecting them over time from the GW shop and token campaigns, or by buying with cash. There are no players near the top using crate weapons. Check out the best weapons right now.

Credits[]

This Guide was originally written by Z-Xer and has received major adjustments after that by Jubjab.

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