State of Decay 2 is a deeply weird game. It isn’t exactly an open-world zombie action game, and it isn’t exactly a simulation either — it’s somewhere in between, with each new map randomly populated with survivors and enclaves. If you’re not careful, your playthrough can easily get bogged down in the boring stuff; constant resource runs and fetch quests. I’m here to tell you that most of that stuff can be skipped. If it can’t be skipped, it can be diminished.
Basically, I want to take a lot of the frustration out of State of Decay 2. If you’re hungry to see everything the game has to offer, you’ll need to play it at least four times — there are three maps and four legacy goals to complete. Each map has six bases to check out, and the legacy goals give you an interesting final questline that’s make-or-break for your community.
Checkout the tips below. Some of them are kind of obvious (like shoot Freaks), but others are a lot more obscure. Did you know that you’ll earn random rucksacks for completing side-missions, or that you can breakdown rucksacks for more rewards outside the base than inside the base? Learn everything I did with this final, lengthy tips guide.
More State of Decay 2 guides on Gameranx:
- State of Decay 2: Beginner’s Guide | Tips To Help You Survive The Zombie Apocalypse
- State of Decay 2: Move Items From Your Vehicle Straight To Base Inventory | Looting Guide
- State of Decay 2: How To Cure (Or Delay) The Blood Plague | Infection Treatment Guide
- State of Decay 2: Here’s The Best Way To Destroy Plague Hearts | Combat Strategy Guide
- State of Decay 2: How To Earn More Influence Faster | Best Farming Methods
- State of Decay 2: How To Unlock Artillery Strikes | Best Radio Command Guide
- State of Decay 2: How To Manage & Improve Your Community | Base Happiness Guide
- State of Decay 2: How To Kill Juggernauts (Without Dying) | Easy Freaks Guide
- State of Decay 2: Everything You Need To Know About Outposts | Power, Water, Artillery & More
- State of Decay 2: Sheriff Legacy Goal Walkthrough | Endings Guide
#1: Use Random Survivor Rolls For Rare Skills
At the start of a New Game, if you skip the Tutorial, you’ll be able to re-roll a set of three survivors. Always aim to get three survivors with special rare skills — Computers, Chemistry, Gardening, and especially Medicine. Standard skills don’t matter. You’ll be able to level those up naturally!
#2: Fire-Crackers Are The Best Items
Decoys, and Fire-Crackers in particular, are the best item in State of Decay 2. Always bring three Fire-Crackers with you on every single outing. They’re easy to make, very cheap (10 parts at the Workshop) and they’ll help you escape any deadly situation. If you’re outnumbered by zombies and need to make a quick escape, toss fire-crackers and run to your car.
#3: Only Answer Help Calls From Current Enclaves, Ignore Strangers
Once you establish a base, you’ll get calls for help literally all the time. It’s hard to tell who you should be helping, but I’ll make it easier for you. If you have Allied (or even Neutral) enclaves on your map, those are the calls you want to answer. You can safely ignore the calls from random strangers — those don’t matter if you skip them. If you skip local enclave calls, they’ll become cold and eventually hostile to you.
#4: Random Enclave Calls & Stranger Jobs Will Give You Rucksacks
This took an embarrassingly long time for me to realize, but if you complete side-missions for Enclaves, or rescue survivors then refuse to let them join your community, they’ll usually drop a resource rucksack on the ground after they stop following you. Just look on the ground to grab it. They don’t say anything about giving it to you, it just kind of… falls on the ground. Don’t miss it!
#5: Ally With Enclaves For Bonus Status Effects, Survivors & Faster Influence
There’s a good reason you want to become friends with every local enclave. Once you become allies, you’ll unlock bonus special status effects, like extra storage, or unique radio commands. You can also earn more influence through trade, or even grab useful survivors. Talk to allied enclaves and you can recruit any of their members — it will cause the enclave to disappear, but it’s worth it if they have skills you need.
#6: Don’t Bother Clearing Out Infestations
Your community will constantly complain about the level of infestation on the map. Really, I don’t think clearing out infestations is worth the trouble. You’ll earn a small amount of respect and influence, and morale will improve — but the morale effects can easily be countered. Focus on collecting resources and helping allies. If you have nothing else to do, then maybe consider clearing out some infestations.
#7: Build 6 Pipe / Soda Can Bombs To Quickly Destroy Plague Hearts
Plague Hearts are your main goal for most of a State of Decay 2 run. To destroy them safely, while solo, with even the weakest survivor, all you need are a bunch of explosives and a decoy or two. It helps to bring as many decoys and explosives as you can — a gun will help too. Simply toss down a decoy outside the Plague Heart, then run inside and pelt the heart with all the bombs you can.
#8: Go To Every Survey Site, Then Use The Radio To Locate All Plague Hearts
To quickly complete the Plague Heart side of things, you’ll need to actually locate all the Plague Hearts. Usually, there are about 12 Plague Hearts on every map. Slowly expand from your starting point and stop at every single survey tower to scout the environment. Usually you’ll locate hearts, but eventually you might have a hard time finding the last one or two. When that happens, use the radio and request a Plague Heart location.
#9: Save Your Influence For The Best Base — Only Move Once
Influence is extremely precious, so you don’t want to waste it on superfluous things. There are six bases on every map — your goal is to earn either 1,500 or 3,500 influence so you can purchase the large base (low customization) or the massive base (high customization) for your community. Before selecting a new base, search the map and unlock all of them. You can get an overview of a base’s facilities from the map menu.
#10: Break Down Resources For Instant Rewards
If you’re full on storage and have too many resources, you can break them down for bonus rewards. Even more so than if you take them back to base and deposit them. For example, you’ll spend one gas resource to get a gas can. But, if you break down a gas rucksack outside your base, you’ll get one gas can and two Molotov cocktails. That’s a much better deal.
#11: Use Mods To Unlock The Best Facilities / Abilities
Mods are one of the best new additions to State of Decay 2. You don’t have to provide power to your entire base or unlock water if you have Portable Power Generators or Water Coolers. Search for facility mods whenever you go on resource raids, and bring them back if you find them.
They’re more valuable than gold — install a mod and check to see if they require anything else. Water Coolers need to be filled daily, and Portable Generators need a gas fill-up daily, too. That’s the downside. A fully-fledged power generator only needs one gas per day — multiple Portable Generators all need to be gassed up.
The best mod is the High-Powered Antennae. This mod, when installed at a Command Center, gives you access to another outpost. That’s insanely useful. Look for it in military areas or government buildings.
#12: Raid Evacuation Sites, Military Comms & Police Stations For The Best Weapons
Speaking of military areas or government buildings, that’s where you’ll find the best weapons. Guns stores are great for ammo resources, pistols, and rifles — but if you want assault rifles, grenade launchers, and high-tech mods, you’ll need to visit Evacuation Sites, Military Comms Stations, or Military Checkpoints. I’ve found a shotgun at every single Police Station I’ve ever visited, so raid the cop shops if you’re looking for a shotgun. They’re one of the best weapons in the game for taking out freaks.
#13: Build Silencers And Add Them To Revolvers, Bolt-Action Rifles
Silencers are an amazing addition to almost any weapon, but they’re best equipped to bolt-action rifles, or revolvers if you have enough ammo. Silencers make your shots much quieter, but also cause your weapon to break down and lose durability faster.
Revolvers and bolt-action rifles never lose durability, so you never have to worry about wasting parts to repair them. Silencers also never break, so you can use them as much as you want. Upgraded workshops can provide even better silencers.
#14: Use Guns Against Freaks
Freaks are back in State of Decay 2. Generally, you never want to tangle with these guys in melee range. Bloaters need to be shot in the head (or stomach) — Screamers also need a head shot to take down before they yell. Ferals are extremely annoying.
Run Ferals down with your vehicle, or use a shotgun to blow them away fast. Juggernauts are the worst, but any weapon can work on them. Hide in a house and headshot them until they’re down. It usually takes about 15-20 bullets, depending on the power of your weapon.
#15: Use Guns Against Humans
Eventually, you will fight human opponents in State of Decay 2. When that happens, grab a gun and start shooting. Humans are pretty resilient, unless you get a headshot. That’s an instant kill. Flashbangs are also very, very helpful against humans — as are fire-crackers. When you’re in a life-or-death struggler, drop fire-crackers at your human enemy’s feet and zombies will swarm toward them.
Usually you’ll be outnumbered, so the undead will be drawn to your enemy’s gun shots. Aim carefully and wait in chokepoints, then headshot the incoming humans before they can shoot you. Their guns can kill your survivor extremely quickly, so best to play it safe.
#16: Complete Legacy Goals To Unlock New Game+ Bonuses
There are four legacy goals you can complete to win a game of State of Decay 2 — sheriff, builder, trader and warlord. For each legacy goal you complete, you’ll be able to select a card at the start of a new game+ and get a huge bonus. You can select up to two cards, so you’ll want to complete the story as many times as you can for awesome bonus rewards at the start of New Game+. For example, completing the Sheriff Goal will give you a pile of rare loot daily.
Got your own insanely useful tips and tricks? Let us know in the comments section!