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Undead World: Hero Survival Beginner’s Guide: Tips, Tricks & Strategies to Survive the Zombie Apocalypse

Ah, yes. The Zombie Apocalypse. A well-worn trope whose prospects of perilous independence have millennials and Gen-Z’s drooling at the mouth.

When one thinks of a world overrun by the undead or not-so-dead-but-virally-infected, things that generally come to mind are the drama of life-or-death situations, the rough lifestyle of foraging for supplies, friendships forged in fire, blood, and zombie guts, and the general weirdness of rebuilding, or prolonging civilization. All sorts of characters come out of the woodwork in the unlikely event of a zombie apocalypse, and humanity’s character itself is tested. And this specific mobile game, in the microcosm of its own circumstantial world’s end, displays such things rather well.

Undead World: Hero Survival is all about the journey of one man searching for a way to permanently end the persistent problem of a zombie apocalypse, as well as the life and times of post-zombie-apocalyptic shenanigans and all the drama, friendships, and oddities this entails.  Collect heroes from various factions, plumb the depths of the ruined world for loot, equipment, and gold, and help Conor and your merry zombie-slaying crew find the mysterious man whose potential cure started your journey in the first place.

undead world hero survival tips

Though this looks like Double Down Interactive’s first foray into the idle game genre, it certainly doesn’t feel like it as the game’s graphics and depth provides a pleasing enough welcome into its zombie-ridden universe.

In Undead World, your job is to power up and recruit a rag-tag group of misfits, leveling them up and outfitting them with equipment you gain from your steady progress into the zombie-ridden landscape. Once you and your squad is ready, your heroes, set into your formation of choice, attack and unleash righteous zombie-killing fury on their own, save for their ultimate skills which you can either set to activate automatically, or manually activate at the press of a button.

The game holds your hand well enough for the first chapter, though you’re on your own from chapter 2 onwards. Fear not, however, as our Undead World: Hero Survival beginner’s guide comes with a bunch of tips, tricks and strategies to help you thrive in this wild, new undead world!

1. Don’t Forget To Take A Break

To start things off, Undead World is an idle hero-collector game, along the lines of AFK Arena and Dragon Tamer, which means the higher you push through the game’s Campaign Mode, the better your idle rewards. Clearing Campaign mode is your main priority, as premium currency, more daily missions, new features, VIP perks, and more await as you go deeper through the stages.

undead world hero survival idle rewards
A short break helps. Longer breaks help too.

As this game is an idle game, it isn’t a bad thing if you forget about it for a day, as it’ll accumulate various rewards for you to collect when you log in later, along the lines of equipment, level-up materials, and other resources.

Try to log-in at least once a day though, so you don’t hit the limit on your idle reward storage and don’t forget to avail of your once-a-day free 12H instant reward button. Said button is also accessible if you pay premium currency to use it again, but I wouldn’t really recommend it as you’ll need every bit of premium currency you can get to pull for heroes, among other things.

2. Learn From Your Victories And Defeats

You’ll notice on your first Campaign Stage clear that there’s a small blue graph-looking icon on your lower right. Tapping it will let you see stats about your heroes’ performance during their battle (and your rival heroes if you’re playing arena, but that’s for a later tip), such as how much damage they took, dealt, and healed.

undead world hero survival battle summary
Behold, invaluable numbers for your zombie-slaying needs!

This graph will be your best friend in determining how your team performs from here on out. Don’t be afraid to check your graph to see which hero deserves your hard-earned resources for level-ups and which one may need to take a backseat in favor of another one.

3. Mind Your Loot

Undead World is a game generous enough to throw more and more items in your face as you progress. It would serve you well to regularly check your inventory for usable items if you’re feeling stuck, and to make sure everything is in order.

undead world hero survival inventory
Everything seems to be in order… for now.

Of note, Recruiting Pamphlets which you receive from almost every game mode allow you to recruit either Rare or Epic heroes, Item Boxes can immediately give you several hours worth of items to speed your gameplay up even more, Reward boxes from some modes will provide additional loot for you to play around with.

As for Faction Recruitment tickets, they let you get Epic rarity heroes from a specific faction, though more on all this later. It will also be a big help if you take note of how much equipment you’re carrying, so you can plan out how to equip your heroes better. On that note:

4. Suit Up And Reinforce

Undead World’s various game modes will drop equipment for your heroes to use, with rarities ranging from green Commons to blue Rares to purple Epics to Legendaries locked behind some harder content. Though they already provide a decent enough stat boost as-is, you can reinforce them with Parts Box items or equipment you aren’t using.

undead world hero survival reinforcement
New kicks to kick ass with.

The higher the equipment rarity, the higher the equipment’s max reinforcement level, and the more reinforcement EXP it provides. Don’t hesitate to use your duplicate items to reinforce your squad’s equipment to its limit, as fully reinforcing them can end up doubling the stats the equipment provides.

5. Get To Know Your Buddies – You’re In For The Long Haul

This journey of yours would have met an unfortunate, early end if main character Conor went at it on his own without Cady. Your team will also meet an unfortunate, early end if Conor is the only one in it. And as far as both you and Conor are concerned, Cady, and the future heroes you recruit, are here for the long haul.

That being said, try to get to know them better, like what their rarities, roles and factions are for starters. Conor is a tank, and Cady is a ranged hero, so they perform best in the frontline and backline of your formation respectively. Since they’re both EPIC rarity heroes, their base stats, starting level cap, and maximum rarity are higher. Axel and Doc, your first Detonator (AoE specialist) and Support respectively, are flexible since they can function well enough in the midline instead of the backline.

undead world hero survival friends
Three’s a crowd after all.

Take note of their skills as well, since not all heroes are created equal. Conor’s ultimate slams one enemy to the ground, using his ATK to launch other enemies and giving adjacent allies extra defense. Fellow Collegiate tank Mary’s ultimate has her slam her shield using her DEF stat instead. It’s funny to note how these tank characters have a preference for slamming into things.

Their individual skills also differ, as Conor can counter and stun enemies as well as shield himself based off his max health, while Mary on the other hand can render herself immune to debilitating effects and in general gets tankier as fights progress.

undead world hero survival character comparison
Compare and Contrast!

Conor and Cady are both part of the Collegiate, Axel is a member of the rough around the edges Blue Banshee gang, and Doc is a Sugar Reaper, and though they work decently enough together, they will actually function better if you field them with their fellow factionmates. If you field heroes with the same faction together, they’ll get a bonus to their ATK and HP, and the bonus increases the more heroes you field that share said faction.

Shared faction bonuses also apply to equipment- Epic rarity and above equipment will sometimes have faction symbols on them that, when equipped to a faction-matched hero, provide 30% more overall stats. Don’t forget to sneak a peek at their Index profiles as well, since acquiring a Rare or Epic hero for the first time gives you 100 Diamonds you can use to recruit more of them.

Speaking of…

6. Make More Friends At The Cantina

By far the best way to spend your premium currency is to recruit heroes in the Cantina as soon as you reach Chapter 2 of the Campaign mode and have it unlocked. The more heroes you collect, the more diverse your roster, though that’s not all the Cantina is good for. As this IS a hero collector, you’re right to assume you’ll be getting duplicates of the heroes you already have.

undead world hero survival cantina
Time to sit down for some food and drinks with new friends before embarking all over again.

However, these dupes are invaluable resources, as merging heroes with the same name or faction and rarity will increase rarity and stats. To simplify, you actually need dupes if you want to progress even farther into the game and make the most out of your team. So get recruiting!

7. Birds Of A Feather Survive Better Together

You’ll notice on your hero deployment screen that there’s a segmented hexagon which will fill itself with color depending on which heroes you pick to join your squad. I also mentioned this above but allow me to elaborate again: The more heroes in your squad that share a faction, the more bonus HP and attack they have, in increments of 5%.

For example, if you have two Blue Banshee heroes in your squad, they both gain X% HP and ATK, whereas a full squad of Banshees gets everyone an additional 20% in HP and ATK. This bonus is a huge boon no matter what mode you play in, and if you rounded your squad out properly with the right ROLES as well, they’ll definitely be able to hit way above their power level.

8. Focus On A Faction

Once you’ve recruited a few dozen heroes and ascended them, take a look at your roster and see which faction you either want to play as, or which faction makes up the majority. It’s best to choose one faction early on because if you spread your resources too thin and try to level up every hero you find interesting, you’ll find it much harder to progress.

undead world hero survival collegiate squad
Outnumbered, but not outgunned.

The cost of leveling a hero and their equipment adds up very quickly, even more so when they’re much higher leveled. Keeping the faction bonus in mind, your first solid squad of hopefully same-faction heroes should carry you through the first few chapters with relative ease.

9.  Make Way For Your Favorites In The Academy

Though you may be forced to play as a single faction to accelerate your progress and not spread yourself too thin, your favorite characters as well as other prospective faction picks will find a welcome home in the Academy. Once unlocked, the Academy will highlight your 5 highest level heroes and open up a slot or two for your other heroes to occupy, ‘syncing’ them to the lowest leveled hero among your 5.

undead world hero survival academy
Gotta wonder what kind of curriculum we have going on here.

As you play, collect idle rewards, perhaps spend even a few hundred diamonds and fulfill Main Quest missions, the Academy’s doors will grow ever-wider, allowing more heroes to ‘sync’, giving you even more options in terms of team composition and making sure your favorites will always have a place in your teams.

10. Join A Guild

As soon as this feature is available to you, join a guild as soon as possible. Joining one gives you access to Guild Battles, which let you fight 4 faction bosses 3 times everyday for good loot. If your guild is active enough, you’ll be able to clear the faction bosses’ 90 battle requirement with relative ease, providing your guild access to the Caravan stage that drops legendary tier equipment and has better loot.

undead world hero survival guild
“The apocalypse is more fun if you have a group of friends to survive it with. Join a Guild to hang out, socialize, and go on the occasional deadly raid.” – Guild Background, Undead World: Hero Survival

Active guilds will also give you a larger pool of mercenaries to choose from, heroes from your friends or guildmates which you can request to borrow for every game mode, or have man the Guard Tower which I’ll talk about in-depth below.

11. Get In Formation

At this point you should be a bit more familiar with the nuances of your characters and their skills. The standard ‘Balanced’ formation is okay enough to start with, though by the time you’ve unlocked this feature from Campaign mode progression, your pool of heroes should be rounded out enough to make the most of the new formations available.

undead world hero survival formations
Don’t break them, and pray they won’t be broken.

There isn’t much to say about Formations except that experimenting with each one as soon as they become available is worth the time investment. You’ll also want to consider clearing Skyscraper stages to level up your formation stats ASAP, though more on that later.

12. Take A Walk On The (Post-Apocalyptic) Wild Side

undead world hero survival adventure mode
Places to go, Zombies to see.

Fans of the Idle Game genre may be happy to know that Undead World has a lot going for it under its nice-looking hood. Aside from its Campaign mode, there are other modes you unlock as you progress. I’ll explain each one below:

No Brakes On The Zombie Express Train

There’s something viscerally charming about a battle against an ever-escalating horde of zombies atop a speeding train. Your goal is to kill as many zombies as possible within 1 minute and 30 seconds. The more zombies you kill, the more points you earn, and the more points you earn, the better your rewards. Prepare well, as you only have one chance per day to attempt this.

This mode basically plays like an ever-escalating Campaign stage except for the occasional “Zombie Rush” button that pops up on the lower left part of your screen. The sooner you touch it, the more zombies come to try and kill your party, though you get more bonus points as well for pressing it early.

Be careful with the button though, as pressing it at the wrong time will probably get your team overrun by sheer numbers even though they could have taken them on at their current pace.

undead world hero survival zombie express
Not sure if I want on or off this train ride.

One important thing to note is you can retry the Zombie Express as many times as you like in a day, though you can only receive the daily reward from it once. Feel free to ride the train at your leisure and see how different strategies, squads, and factions perform so you can tier up higher!

Your best strategy here is to immediately press the Zombie Rush button every time it pops up until the zombies are around 10 levels below your current squad’s level, which is your signal to slow down and let them take their time killing the zombies that pop up. That is, unless you’ve experienced seeing your team mow down zombies well above their level. In which case, feel free to ignore my advice and go as hard as you like. You should know your team best after all.

Explore Midtown

Midtown should be a delight to gamers familiar with the roguelike genre, as this mode drops you on a board with most of its tiles obscured by fog of war. Your only way forward is to fill up the objective gauge by exploring the nearby tiles, which may have zombies, temporarily recruitable heroes, medical supplies, and the occasional traveling Caravan shop.

Beating zombie tiles will give your party a choice of 3 buffs that can, and will, stack with each other. The more zombie tiles you brave, the stronger your party will be. Choose your battles carefully so your party is ready and healthy enough to take down the boss that appears when your objective gauge maxes out. 

undead world hero survival midtown
The thrill of the (marginally) unknown!

Once the boss is defeated, you get some hefty loot in the form of premium currency and other useful items, and the next area opens up for you to rinse and repeat your exploring and zombie-busting. Finish all 3 areas of Midtown if you can, as the rewards are well worth your trouble and the Midtown shop section of the Caravan lets you buy heroes for Midtown coins you earn as you play the mode.

Each faction-specific Epic hero is well worth the investment, so it would be in your best interests to save for them to either upgrade them or recruit them if the Cantina hasn’t been kind to your faction of choice.

Scale The Skyscraper

The Skyscraper is one of the earliest modes you unlock from pushing Campaign stages. It’s your standard Hero Collector mode where you climb through non-repeatable stages of escalating difficulty, each with their own unique rewards. If you’re having trouble clearing a stage, you could also review the win data of your fellow players to see if you can copy their squads or compare their stats to yours.

undead world hero survival skyscraper
Your usual day of scaling tall, very ominous buildings.

It’s a good mode to play alongside Campaign mode as you can get Diamonds, Recruiting Pamphlets, Energy Drinks, Formation Books to level your Formation positions, and more, which will certainly help you push your team to new heights.

Man The Guard Tower

The Guard Tower feature lets you accumulate even more hearts by manning its gigantic, cathartic guns with your friends’ and guild’s mercenaries. All you need to do is set your friends’ and guildmates’ mercenaries on each Tower, and collect the heart rewards after waiting a couple hours.

undead world hero survival guard tower
I’d like to call this teambuilding – the fun way.

Just like in other idle games, this mode does have a cap on the amount of rewards you can get, and it’s easier to reach that cap if you one, have a lot of friends and guildmates, and two, if said friends or guildmates borrow your mercenaries.

Test Your Mettle In The Arena

There’s a reason I left this specific tip for last. The Arena is where every battle-hardened squad goes for that extra leg-up in premium currency and loot, as it rewards diamonds daily with the amount depending on how well you perform in it. It also gives a more generous reward at the end of a “season”, which lasts a couple of weeks.

That being said, it’s no surprise everyone and their mother playing this game can and will tear their fellow players a new one in the effort to climb the ranks and accumulate that sweet loot, hence you the player should also be ready with your best squad outfitted with your best gear, ready to rip and tear until it is done. Luckily the arena isn’t as unforgiving as other arenas

undead world hero survival arena
Put up your dukes bro.

Hold nothing back here. A full squad of single-faction, epic heroes with fully reinforced epic gear is the bare minimum of what it’ll take to climb the ranks. Worst case scenario, you’ll also want make a second squad comprised of heroes from another faction, or field the rare Altered or Gungnir heroes if you have them as backup to counter specific faction builds. If you really want to make the most of the arena, logging in everyday and finishing your dailies is imperative, as the higher your team’s level and the better their equipment, the more butts they’ll be able to kick. Godspeed, friends.

These are all the tips and tricks for Undead World: Hero Survival, that we have come up so far! If you have any suggestions or feedback, please feel free to let us know in the comment area below!