Dead Island: Survivors is a spin-off title of the famous zombie game that enjoyed great success on PC and consoles. Instead of focusing on the first-person action across the tropical paradise that was swarmed by zombies, Dead Island: Survivors offers completely different experience. This one is a mix between a classic tower defense game and a top-down hack-and-slash action game. You will kill thousands of undead while trying to gather as many survivors as you can on your boat and then travel to another island where you have to do the same. This pretty much sums up the game’s single-player campaign that contains lots of different islands each of them coming with harder to kill zombie horde.
Instead of incorporating a classic campaign made out of linear levels, Dead Island: Survivors shakes things up a bit. At each moment during the game, no matter which island you are, you can select between a couple of missions. There are resource gathering missions, missions that ask from the player to defend survivors, to gather supplies, and finally, you have missions that grant you new survivors upon completing them. Each island has a survivor meter and once that meter is full or, in other words, once you save enough people, you will travel to the next tropical paradise turned hell by the undead swarm.
Dead Island: Survivors features a classic tower defense formula, in which you create the longest route possible for the zombies to take and then plant it with various towers. In addition to this tried and true mechanic, the game gives you command over one special combatant that is equipped with a special weapon and is more deadly than a dozen towers combined. This makes for an exciting gameplay where you don’t spend most time just waiting for all enemy waves to end before a level is finished. Instead, you have to be aware of enemies all the time, since towers here are weaker than in classic tower defense game. In Dead Island: Survivors, your hero will do most of the killing, being the first and last hurdle for zombies to jump over before reaching gates or killing your hero. Once they accomplish any of those two things, it’s game over and you have to restart a level.
You have a couple of freebie gate breaches before a level is over, but have to watch for each enemy because they come in groups and most times, if one breach gate a couple more will also breach it, meaning game over. So, in Dead Island: Survivors the most important thing is watching for enemies and preventing them from traveling beyond the last defense tower because, if they do that, you will have a slim chance of killing them before they breach the gate.
The game offers superb visuals and it really looks like an AAA title for mobile devices. Everything is rich in detail, environments are stunning and everything has that slight cartoony feel to it despite the fact that the game is pretty gory. And even though Dead Island: Survivors is a freemium title you will be able to play lots of it without shelling a dime, just follow our guide. Let us begin.
1. Constant Moving Is Everything, But The Mini-Map Is Pretty Important Too
Since this game is more about your hero than defense towers, this means the camera is always following the hero. And since the camera cannot be zoomed out, and since there’s no free camera pan, and the camera covers a pretty small area of any given level, you have to constantly move in order to see where enemies are. Sure, there’s a small mini-map in the upper right corner but you will rarely check that one in the middle of the action. Instead, you have to constantly move, and frequently check out the area around the gate in case some zombie managed to get through your defense network.
Move around, especially once a new wave starts coming towards the gate, and be sure to check out the area near the gate during every wave. And do not forget about the mini-map; yes, it is small and not really easy to read, but it can help when you can’t go to the gate because there are enemies to kill. Just remember the point where your defenses end and if you see some red dot beyond that point run as fast as you can towards it before it breaches the gate.
2. The Three-Star Rating Can Be Achieved Even In Case Of Gate-Breaching
Dead Island: Survivors is pretty harsh when it comes to the number of zombies allowed to reach the gate before a level is failed. The default number is just three enemies, which is beyond poor, but after a couple of upgrades, you can double the number. Six enemies still is pretty harsh compared to other tower defense games, but at least that means you can allow yourself to miss remnants of one wave (because your towers won’t be able to kill all of them without your assistance, usually letting around two or three to pass) and still earn a three-star rating.
This is because the game grants three stars as long as the gate breach counter counts three or more. So, don’t worry if that last one undead from the last wave reached the gate with your hero being too far to kill it before it breaches it. As long as the breach counter is three or more you will have the perfect score and will be given the full prize.
3. You Can Build Fences Too, Not Just Defense Towers
In Dead Island: Survivors fence pieces are the most important thing, they are that small part of the formula that makes it much more powerful With them you can direct zombies the way you want, preventing them from taking two or more routes. So, before you start using defense towers as obstacles, remember there are fence pieces available, that are way cheaper to build.
4. Always Try To Create One Major Route For Enemies To Take
Each island in Dead Island: Survivors features one map on which all survivor and resource missions take place in meaning you will face the undead on the same map, over and over again. This means you will have plenty of time to learn how to create the best path possible for zombies to take. We advise you to always create routes that converge at one point, making your towers as efficient as possible.
This point of convergence should be tightly populated by defense towers. We advise you to try erecting that powerful tower that chops enemies once activated near the point of convergence and to build AoE (area of effect) towers like the flamethrower and the one that releases burning rubbers after routes converge so they can affect the biggest number of enemies. Cannons should be placed in the way they push enemies back to AoE towers, or into traps (like spike pits).
We also advise you to always change the layout of your defense towers because your current layout won’t be good enough once enemies get a new route from which they will attack. And always, try to create the longest possible route for enemies to take so your hero has plenty of time to kill as many enemies before they reach the gate. Further, you receive full refund for destroying towers so don’t be afraid to try different defense tower combination, or to build different towers for different levels (for instance, to populate the map with flamethrowers for missions that feature lots of less powerful enemies, and to sell those and build cannons and machine guns for missions that feature bigger and badder zombies).
5. Always Do Lots Of Resource Missions Before You Start Gathering Survivors
Resource missions are easier than those giving your survivors, and you should do plenty of those before moving on to gathering survivors. This way you will have lots of metal to build whichever towers you want, and once you reach tougher survivor missions you will still have lots of resources needed for building additional towers.
Also, once you are near filling up survivor meter on your current island, pause doing survivor missions and beat a couple of resource missions so you can erect all available towers as soon as you travel to a new island because each new island is tougher than the last one. Around 3500-5000 metal will be enough before advancing to a new island.
6. Upgrade Just Those Items You Are Frequently Using
Since Dead Island: Survivors features a leveling system based on cards that means you will have plenty of items to upgrade but not enough cash for all those upgrades. So, upgrade just towers you constantly use. For instance, the gate is always worth upgrading, so as is the flamethrower and machine gun towers. Next, if you have an epic defense tower, upgrade it as soon as you can. As for the consumables, upgrade only those you use, not all of them. We upgraded just health regenerating drinks because we use just that one consumable.
As for characters, try playing with every new character and upgrade it only if they suit your play style. If you upgrade a character you don’t play with, you’re doing it wrong. The same goes for weapons; try them all and upgrade just the one that suits you the best.
Okay, folks, that was all. We hope this guide helped you to cruise across islands featured in Dead Island: Survivors and that you managed to destroy the undead horde that infected former tropical paradise. Thanks for reading and happy gaming!