Skip to main content

Dead Island 2 Beginner's Guide - Which Character to Choose, How to Unlock Skills, Rare Items, Crafting Materials, and Other Game Tips


Dead Island 2 Beginner's Guide

In Dead Island 2, we have to save Los Angeles, which has been quarantined. The player has access to six characters resistant to the zombie virus. In this guide, we will tell you which hero is best to choose for your play style, talk about the combat system and answer questions that arise during the game.

Which character to choose at the start: we analyze the heroes by role and style of play

Each character in Dead Island 2 is unique in its own way. In addition to the basic characteristics, the characters have their own characteristics that can radically change the gameplay.

For example, Ryan gets a bonus to attack power after a successful block or dodge, and Bruno deals more damage during attacks in the back. While we've ranked the characters from least to most useful, you can choose the one that best suits your play style.

Which character to choose at the start: we analyze the heroes by role and style of play

Each of the protagonists, in addition to a set of skills, has its own characteristics, which should also be taken into account:

  • Persistence. Reduces physical damage from enemy attacks. With an increase in this characteristic, the character takes less damage from each hit;
  • Endurance. You can also call it stamina: the higher this characteristic, the more special abilities and attacks you can apply;
  • Health recovery. Responsible for how quickly the character is able to return to battle. Among the heroes, there are no those who have a high stat, but Dany pays for high stamina with the lowest value of this stat;
  • Critical damage. Responsible for the critical damage multiplier: the higher the indicator, the greater the damage of each successful attack;
  • Agility. Reflects the character's base speed: the higher the value, the faster the player will move;
  • Maximum health. Indicates the amount of damage a character can take. In the game, this parameter has a numeric value;
  • Resistance. Affects how much damage fire, electricity, poison, and other elements can cause damage.

You can see the characteristics of each character in the attached screenshot. We will focus on the gameplay features of each of the heroes.


Amy is great at luring out of the crowd and killing zombies, dealing increased damage to single targets thanks to the Divide and Conquer skill. While maintaining stamina, she is helped by the Substitute Pitcher skill, which restores stamina when hit with an accurate weapon throw.

Amy herself is agile and deals excellent critical damage, but due to low stamina, she risks losing her already small health in one hit of the enemy. But this style of play, especially in Dead Island 2, may not appeal to everyone.

It is difficult to isolate zombies - many opponents immediately run to the noise, and the monotonous tactics of throwing weapons can quickly get bored. And stamina is easier to recover using evasion or other defensive techniques than throwing weapons. However, if you're into Assassin's Creed-esque, slow-paced gameplay, you'll love Amy.


Dani is suitable for those who seek to be in the center of the battle. Her Thunderclap skill creates a powerful shockwave when hit by a powerful attack, and Bloodlust heals if the character kills multiple zombies in a row.

High stamina allows the heroine to deliver powerful attacks and use abilities for a long time, and the low health regeneration parameter is due to Bloodlust. So regardless of the desire of the player, you will have to be in the center of the battle and constantly destroy zombies - at least in order to survive.

For this reason, Dani may not be to everyone's liking. Let her use ranged weapons without any problems, when receiving damage, she will have to jump into the crowd or use first-aid kits - just like that, health will be restored for a long time.


Carla was kind of stuck between being a tank and a damage dealer. High stability, endurance, and starting abilities allow her to hold back the onslaught of opponents, luring them to herself. "Don't Give Up " gives a medium stamina bonus when Carla is low on health, and "Mosh Pit" increases damage when multiple zombies are nearby.

But Karla cannot be called the best tank because of more suitable options - they are not enough to calmly "tank", and the skill that gives resistance only works at a low level of health. Not everyone will like this risky play style, and the low critical damage value does not allow you to deal enough damage even with Mosh Pit.

However, a good weapon can somewhat improve the situation. And if you're looking for a fighter who can both tank and deal damage depending on the situation, Carla is a good choice.


Bruno can be called a "glass cannon" due to his low durability and the lowest health of any character. The Backstab ability increases the damage of Backstab attacks, while Slashing gives a bonus to Agility and preparation of powerful attacks when the hero avoids damage with a dodge or block.

With the highest critical damage, Bruno can deal more damage than any other character. But the player needs to act covertly, attacking opponents in the back and constantly dodging. If you enjoy the feeling of danger and close-to-the-death battles, or you just prefer to deal maximum damage, Bruno is your choice.


Ryan is the best tank in the game due to his stamina and durability, as well as his interesting starting skills. "Rise and Fall" makes it possible to easily restore lost health right during the battle, knocking down opponents, and "Retribution" allows you to deal good damage if the player knows how to dodge or block blows.

Ryan pays for survivability with the lowest value of agility - with such a speed it will not be possible to escape from enemies. However, if you equip it with the right weapons and pump the right skills, it can be a good option for players who are not in a hurry.


Jacob can be considered the best damage dealer in the game. Thanks to the "Beast" skill, he receives a small, but cumulative damage bonus for consecutive attacks. And the second ability helps him to non-stop attack the enemy - "Critical Recoil". Thanks to her, at a low level of stamina, critical attacks receive a bonus to damage and, more importantly, restore this very stamina.

With the proper level of pumping and a bit of luck, Jacob can tirelessly hit the enemy, accumulating damage with each hit. And the average values ​​of the rest of the characteristics help him cope with the difficulties of surviving in the virus-stricken city. However, the character has a minus: his low resistance to elemental damage, which is why some types of zombies can cause Jacob a lot of problems.

We hope you have chosen a hero to your liking. This is not to say that some of the heroes of Dead Island 2 are weak. It's just that some abilities provide more benefits than others.

Also, some heroes are somewhat limited in the style of play, but if you like this style, there will be no problems. We will analyze the basics of the combat system, and then we will try to answer some questions that arise while playing Dead Island 2.

How to quickly kill zombies - basic combat mechanics

At first glance, the combat system in Dead Island 2 is quite simple, but still, it has its own nuances that will help you exterminate zombies more effectively in the vastness of Los Angeles.

Let's start with attacks. In addition to normal and powerful attacks, the player can kick zombies, use slides, and finish off downed opponents when a special icon appears on enemies.

Normal attacks deal moderate damage and barely knock down zombies. In case of spam by such attacks, the player competes with the zombies in who will deal the most damage. Therefore, when spamming with normal attacks, you can quickly die, because zombies easily attack in response.

It is worth alternating them with kicks and powerful attacks. Both use stamina but knock zombies down and interrupt some hits. Also, such attacks consume zombie stamina, and with some luck, you can knock down the enemy and instantly finish them off. And even if this is not done, fallen opponents still receive increased damage.

If you let the zombie get too close, it can grab you. In this case, QTE will start. If you do not have time, the character will not die but will receive serious damage.

What is the best weapon to use

In Dead Island 2, as in the first part, melee weapons do not last forever. Each hit takes a certain amount of durability, and in a fierce fight, it's easy to be left bare-handed against a horde of zombies. Fortunately, the character has several types of weapons with him, which can be changed using the selector, and damaged weapons can be repaired without any problems at the workbench.

Also, as you progress through the story, you will come across the fact that your favorite weapon is no longer so effective due to the increased levels of zombies. This situation can be corrected at the same workbench by updating the characteristics of the weapon to the current level of the player.

Melee weapon

Also, do not forget about the variety of weapons in the game. All melee weapons have unique animations, as well as stats for different fighting styles. There are heavy two-handed hammers that deal damage immediately to a crowd of zombies and knock them back, and there are fast blades that can deal a lot of damage in a short period of time, but almost do not prevent zombies from attacking in response.

There are also ranged weapons in the game, but you should be careful with them. In addition to the fact that ammo is a valuable resource in a zombie apocalypse, the noise that shots make should be taken into account. If you don't want the horde to run at the sound of the shots, try to kill the enemy in close combat or use a silent throwing weapon.

Rage System

At some point, the rage system becomes available to the player - dealing damage and killing zombies accumulates a certain bar, which, after filling, allows you to go into a rage. In this state, you can not use weapons, but in melee, the character can deal a lot of damage.

Elemental Damage and Mods

Another interesting mechanic is elements and elemental damage. We, like zombies, can interact with the environment: push opponents into flames, drive them into the water, and electrify it. It must be remembered that the main character will also receive electricity damage.

It is important to use the environment wisely and do not forget to put various elemental modules on weapons - some types of zombies are immune or vulnerable to certain types of damage.

Here are some more tips to help you fight zombies:

  • When fighting in dark rooms, remember to turn on the flashlight (X). It will allow you to notice the enemy in advance and make it easier to navigate in space;
  • Research every skill card you get. Some of them can significantly increase your combat potential;
  • You can heal right in the middle of the fight, but it's better to break the distance so that you don't miss one or more hits during the use of the first-aid kit. You can also eat bars and energy drinks dropped from zombies;
  • Let it be difficult at first to do the right dodge, try to master this skill. Many abilities are activated precisely due to the perfect dodge or block.

How to get new skills

Skills in Dead Island 2 are represented by cards that the player acquires in a variety of ways. Some of them open as you progress through story missions.

Other skill cards can be obtained by completing side quests and exploring the game's world. Finally, skill cards can be obtained by defeating enhanced versions of zombies. You can learn about skill cards and how to get them in our separate guide.

Where to find crafting materials

To create and upgrade weapons in Dead Island 2, the player will need many different materials. There are no special features in finding them. You just need to methodically wool all the locations. However, there are a few points worth mentioning.

Mark the necessary items for crafting

For convenience, you can mark the items needed for a particular craft. This will allow you to track the progress of the search and return to the shelter in time to create the desired item.

Return to previously visited places

During the clearing of the area, sometimes you should double-check the location - zombies can break out of previously closed rooms that are filled with loot. Therefore, after clearing the wave, look around, especially paying attention to the places where the opponents got out.

The most pleasant fact for Grind fans is that the loot in Dead Island 2 is renewable, though not all. Returning to the location after a while, you can explore it again and find new crafting materials. True, with sources of truly rare items and weapons, this will not work.

How to get rare items

Complete additional tasks

Rare items and weapons with high damage can be found by simply exploring the regions of EL. But completing quests, including side quests, will greatly increase your chance of acquiring rare loot.

Fight bosses and find keys

Another option is to seek out and destroy named zombies, which are enhanced versions of opponents. Sometimes they drop a key to a room or a safe nearby, inside which you can find various rare items.

You can check the keys that you have on the tab of the same name in the inventory. There are 146 keys in total in the game. Yes, and rare and interesting loot can sometimes fall from the reinforced opponents themselves.

How fast travel works and how to unlock it

In Dead Island 2, you can quickly travel through locations, but first, you need to go through part of the story. After that, you will be able to visit areas that you have already visited by activating the fast travel card. 

Other Game Tips

In this section, we have collected other useful tips that can make Dead Island 2 easier and improve the overall experience of the project. If you know of other tips and tricks that can help players - share them in the comments.

Don't forget about cards and experiment with skills

As we mentioned above, skill cards can be obtained while completing quests, exploring the open world, and for defeating strong opponents. Don't ignore the new abilities - some of them can be very useful and fit perfectly into your play style. We have analyzed the mechanics of skills in a separate guide.

Complete challenges for permanent bonuses

In total, the player can complete 84 challenges in Dead Island 2. Most of them complete as you progress, but if you encounter too strong enemies, return to the previous locations and complete as many challenges as possible.

The fact is that as a reward the player receives permanent positive effects: increased damage, maximum health, agility, or strength of certain types of weapons. So if you're lacking in damage or survivability, challenges are a great way to fix the problem.

Look into Zompedia to study opponents

In the collectibles menu, you will find Zompedia, which contains information about all the undead that you will encounter in Los Angeles. Each article lists four tips to help deal with a particular type of zombie: its weaknesses, effective techniques, and tricks.

Do not ignore this information - it can greatly facilitate the passage. Zompedia is empty at first. In order to open new tips, you must destroy a certain number of zombies of a particular type.

Always keep fuses with you

Fuses are special items that will allow you to get into closed locations. They cannot be found in the open world, only bought from merchants. One fuse costs $1,500, and you can only hold three of these items in your inventory.

Make sure you always have the maximum number of fuses. So you can comfortably explore the locations without being distracted by returning to the merchant. Behind the locked fuse doors you will find rare loot and weapons.

Health regenerates on its own, albeit slowly

Even if you don’t have any protein bars, energy drinks, or first-aid kits left after the battle, regular rest will restore not only your stamina but also your health. The rate of natural regeneration depends on the chosen character. The specific value of the parameter can be found on the character statistics screen, in the "Fighter" menu.

Also, some heroes have special skills that restore some health when certain conditions are met: a successful dodge or consecutive killing of several zombies.

Finally, during the battle, you might get lucky and stumble upon a Delivery Zombie, which may drop food.

Loot at the location resumes

And this is worth remembering. Of course, you won’t be able to get special boxes and quest items again, but most of the loot in Dead Island 2 is restored sometime after visiting the location. If you were unable to go further due to poor pumping, return to the previous regions and loot everything again.

Due to the limited inventory, it will not be possible to endlessly collect materials. Before each outing, we advise you to spend half of the materials on repairing or improving weapons and sell the excess.

Mark the parts needed for crafting

You can keep track of the items needed to create weapons and modifications. So, when you visit locations again, you will know what exactly you are missing, and the search will turn out to be more conscious. Also, you will always be aware of how much is left to collect, and you can go to the base as soon as you collect the necessary.