Box art - Dead Island: Riptide

Dead Island: Riptide Tips, Tricks, and a Guide on How To Save Your Brains

Dead Island: Riptide — Tips and Tricks Guide to save your Brains from the Zombie Hordes

Revisit, Re-Loot, and Repeat

Many key locations in the game respawn essential items like med packs, Molotovs, and items you can sell to certain NPCs for money and XP. One example of this is the first safe house you end up in where Molotovs and flare gun ammo re-spawn regularly after you revisit the area. If you haven't been back to a safe house for a while, chances are items you can use to restock your main inventory will be available again. This can save you a lot of money as health packs and bombs can cost as much as $500 each.  

Use Fury Mode Sparingly

It may be tempting to activate your fury attack to try and earn bonus XP, but there are downsides to using it too much.  The main downside is that if you do not have fury mode available when you encounter a mini-boss and several other zombies you could become incredibly vulnerable.  Fury mode does not make you completely invincible especially when in a gun battle with human enemies.  Never use it when attempting to kill a suicider either as they will kill you immediately when they explode.   It’s really lame but there’s absolutely no guarantee you won’t die when using fury mode.

Save fury for times when you are overrun with infected zombies, big boss type enemies, and one-on-one confrontations with Screamers, the newest and deadliest addition to the enemy list of Dead Island: Riptide.  The Screamers can be killed outside of fury mode but only in co-op mode when a second player can help you distract the Screamer from chasing after you.  When they get close to you they paralyze you with a loud scream and if you can’t get to higher ground or activate fury in time, you’ll be dead.

The Jumpkick is Your Friend

Executing a perfectly-timed jump kick can prevent enemies who are charging you from getting the upper hand and knock them straight to the ground.  Once enemies are on the ground they are completely at your mercy.

Kicks can also be used to give you breathing room when you find yourself in a tight spot with multiple enemies advancing towards you.  If you are not utilizing kicks I guarantee you’ll have a difficult time trying to combat enemies because it is about the only thing in Dead Island that comes close to blocking.

Level Up the Essentials First

The first items you should focus on upgrading are lock picking, stamina, and inventory upgrades.  Fairly early in the game you'll encounter metal chests that require leveled lock picking skills to open so you don't want to miss the opportunity to get better weapons, otherwise you'll have to waste time backtracking to find them again.

Boosting your stamina immediately will assist in the use of melee attacks and your sprinting ability allowing you to outrun enemies if necessary.  Increasing your stamina skill will also allow you to execute jump kicks more effectively and more often and prevents you from being knocked down by enemies which happens if you get hit when your stamina runs out.  Lastly, if you don’t upgrade your inventory slots right away you won’t be able to pick up weapons as you venture around the island, which can be very annoying.


Regeneration Abilities are Key to Survival

Every character has an ability that allows them to regenerate health in one way or another, and it is essential to unlock that ability early on.  I played primarily as John Morgan and unlocked the ability to regenerate a small portion of health after dealing critical blows to enemies.  If I ever found myself down to less than half health I would find a lone zombie, kick him to the ground, and beat it with my bare fists until I regained full health because every punch with your bare hands is a critical hit.  This process was faster and less costly than buying med packs and scavenging for food and snacks.

Equip Responsibly

Make sure to have at least one bomb, one mine, and at least two heavy duty melee weapons equip at all times.  If you have these items at the ready you will be prepared for any situation that you encounter.  It can also help to have melee weapons available to throw at enemies, just make sure you’re not too attached to them as they can be lost if you die before recovering them.  They can also be lost if they glitch and get stuck in the ground, which happened to me a few times.

Take Care of your NPCs

In this newest installment you're able to level up your core NPCs, which is essential to being successful during the “Tower Defense” like instances when you have to protect your safe house from waves of zombie attacks.  If you don't want to have to babysit your team during these attacks, make sure you do the various side quests associated with their characters.  They are generally easy and usually require you to give them crafting items you find along your journey.  Completing these team quests can also benefit you because you'll be rewarded with bombs, various weapons, and even discounts when trading with certain party members.

Beware of Special Attacks

Special attacks can be unlocked in the combat skill tree for every character.  These attacks can add bonus moves available while sprinting towards enemies or when enemies are on the ground, making melee attacks more powerful and satisfying.  The only downside is that most of these moves take a long time to execute and if you don’t land them properly you are completely vulnerable to enemy attacks.  Make sure if you execute a special attack for your character you are not surrounded by a significant amount of enemies.  

One special attack is available from the start for every character, which is essentially a jump punch.  This can be executed on an enemy from any height as long as they are at a downward angle from your character.  It results an instant kill on all minor zombies but again leaves you vulnerable to enemy attacks if you jump into a crowd of zombies so use it cautiously.

Built-in XP Farming

Along your journey you'll come across various continuous quest opportunities where NPCs will pay you to bring them certain items.  Whenever you deliver these items you'll be rewarded with a good sum of money and XP.  The items you can sell on these continuous quests are part of your craftable and non-craftable items, which you can carry an unlimited amount of because the only inventory the game accounts for is your weapons.  The items you should make sure to hang onto for these quests are Diamonds, Canned Food, Blades, and Pain Killers.  The NPCs you sell canned food and painkillers too are located in safe houses during the course of the main story and are the easiest ones to take advantage of.

When Vehicles Attack

You have access to cars from the start of the game and gain access to boats fairly early on in the main plot.  When you encounter large groups of enemies or mini-bosses it's best to take them out in a vehicle.  At times you will come across areas where cars or boats cannot gain access so you can lure mini-bosses and large groups of zombies out of those areas, hop in your vehicle really quick, and run them over without taking any damage to yourself.  The only downside to this is that you do not have access to vehicles at all during the last few chapters of the game, which happened in the first game as well.