Looting is the most common way survivors make money. Looting covers the basics but players have come up with some unique tips and tactics. You can view these below.
Surviving & Looting in the Inner City
At first, you may wish to get as close to the end zones as you can to see if you can try to survive there, but it's up to you to decide if you should. End zones refer to the NEZ (North-Eastern) or SEZ (South-Eastern) because they have the best chances for loot in the game, not to mention they house the strongest and toughest zombies.
Additionally, if you are too weak to travel towards the end zones, but still want to pursue better loot, head as close as possible to the end zones. If you loot an area for a long time, you'll eventually start finding better stuff. Therefore take a very long route that ends close to the end zones and you will be looting better stuff by then.
You can kill your way there as much as you want, or not... it doesn't matter. The main thing is that you use silent weaponry, such as melee or pistols/rifles.
While looting, it is highly advised for players to avoid the use of weapons that can increase aggro. Higher aggro means more infected will chase you, and this will halt your looting activities. Using machine guns, grenade launchers, and shotguns will significantly increase aggro (Grenade launchers increase aggro much faster compared to other guns). Pistols and Rifles attract zombies within hearing range and can disturb looting. Melee weapons (except chainsaws) don't attract any aggro. But beware, the longer you stay in the Inner City, aggro spikes are inevitable, regardless of what weapon you happen to use.
Melee Alone Isn't Enough
Choose your weapons wisely, wielding only melee weapons will most likely get you hurt or killed when fighting exploding zombies like the bloat. Going looting without a ranged weapon is a bad idea anyways. It is also difficult to effectively avoid and kill special zombies during an aggro spike, with only melee weapons as you have very little room to move around. When wielding guns, keep an eye on your ammunition reserves.
Stay Within Your Skill Level
Players are encouraged to go "deeper" into the Inner City if they feel comfortable in the zones, however looting in dangerous, deep areas of the city isn't recommended unless the player has enough skills, stats or weapons to be able to handle the tougher zombies. Instead, the player should loot in places that are easier and are accustomed to surviving in. Loot isn't as important as surviving, and the time wasted getting to your location.
Remain On The Move
Keep in mind, that you can still move around while searching a body or a car. However, taking damage or attacking in any way will interrupt the search. The safest way to loot is to kill any zombie that is nearby, this will guarantee you searching that object safely and you will gain experience while doing so. Killing zombies is optional, though it is possible to loot with only one hand on the keyboard and avoiding all zombies and only using the mouse to select options on item popups.
Cars are very useful when looting, or just when you want to avoid zombies. When a zombie walks into a solid object, it obstructs their movement and halts them, then they'll move in another direction almost immediately for a small amount of time giving you time to loot or just run away.
End Zone Looting
The end zones are the best areas to loot as they have higher percentages for high-tier weapons and armors, added risks, the most dangerous area commonly besides the wastelands and is commonly looted by high-level players. They consist of two zones, one being NEZ (North-East Zone) and the other being SEZ (South-East Zone).
Once you get to the end zones, the only thing to do is loot. Loot as much as you can, and as long as you can and ignore most zombies walking nearby and aren't attracted, you should eliminate any zombie following you. If you walk away from zombies who are attracted to you, they won't disappear, they'll spawn again on your screen somewhere and suddenly start following you. Aggro spikes will occur randomly and often.
Before you start looting in these end zones, it is best to scout ahead first. Take notice to the loot spots around you, find the easiest way to get to them, and formulate a looting route to use always.
- Decent gear, 110 or 120 weaponry with a level 45 armor (being an Exterminator Reactive XT), or level 75 armors.
- It's best to have a silent ranged weapon to deal with nuisances such as irritated rumblers, or bloats.
- Have patience with looting, you can't expect to find the best possible item in-game instantly. It takes time.
- High agility; 90-100+ agility is recommended.
- It is optional to have a security box on you, for added safety for the cash you pick up.
- It is optional, but having a gold membership is the best way to get better loot, it increases the amount of ammo drops, adds more loot spots and gives you the opportunity to find level 120 weapons and level 75 armors. It is highly recommended to subscribe to get the best possible chance while looting.
Travel Light But Be Prepared
- Take any food or meds that you've looted with you, they could save your life and experience gain.
- Once having a full inventory, open your inventory and use all unnecessary items such as food/meds that are below your level, if you can, this will bring your health and food back to previous states and will free some inventory slots.
- Carry an extra box of ammunition, you'll need it.
- Carry barricading supplies, at least one set.
Yes, this may all the while cost you some backpack slots. This can be thought of as an insurance policy because if you die, you can sell those items which are 'useless' and lessen the burden of dying.
Once you're on low health (serious/critical), and your armor is broken, immediately search for a building and make sure it only has one entrance. Barricade the building and kill any and all zombies inside until the bottom of the screen says "Press O to enter Personal Outpost Mode", going into a personal outpost also saves any EXP you've earned. Optionally if the building has stairs you can go up them and enter the outpost mode even if there are zombies downstairs.
After some time (6 hours to 2 days) your personal outpost will be under attack, meaning you will be forced into the game and there will be high aggro. Much like an Outpost Attack, except in usually smaller areas and there is no bonus EXP. Make sure you're prepared by being fully healed, armour being fully repaired, and additional ammunition at the ready.
Tip: 1. You can press inner city when you log out of the game, so when you enter the game again you can go back into your outpost without being under attack. (If you're in multiplayer, zeds may spawn if others are in the same instance as you.)
2. If you inventory is full and so is your storage, while barricaded you can just put up the items in your inventory on the market for a high price, giving you more inventory space to loot. You can sort everything out once you're back to the outpost if you wish to sell your looted items there. This should allow you to fill your inventory around 2 more times, making your looting trips that much more effective.
Know Your Enemy
Zombies are not are not that dangerous at all once you get used to them. For example, normal and burnt zombies can easily be circled around while standing over a lootable corpse. This can be done with only one hand, but it's easier with two.
Depending on the areas you are in, it gets more difficult due to the Bestiary, such as needing to focus on avoiding and sprinting fast enemies. Leapers are easy to avoid as normal zombies, but the attack damage it possess can end anyone's loot run in one swing. Puking zombies can be dodged too, just wait for them to get close enough to puke and move out of the way.
Boss zombies should not be circled in this way as all of them (excluding burning zombies) have a very wide cone of attack, making them difficult to dodge. Bosses also bring aggro spikes with them most of the time.
Common End Zone Enemy Breakdowns
- Black Long Arms - They're more powerful and stronger than the normal the normal Long Arms.
- Irradiated Long Arms - Their vomiting is compared to the Flaming Mother's vomit in range, and damage. Take caution.
- Flesh Hounds - They're more powerful than the Tendrils, in terms of damage. Be careful, as they can form packs and push each other.
- Black Rumblers - They're more powerful than the normal Rumbler.
- Irradiated Rumblers - They're similar to the Bloat, as they explode on death. Melee isn't advised when fighting them.
- Siren - A looter's worst possible nightmare. Their screaming attracts hordes, which make it more difficult when looting and traveling. When spotted it is recommended to take it out first, and quickly.
- Tendril - While more common in Red and Black Zones, they spawn less in the White zones and are common.
- Spider - Fast, aggressive and dangerous. Be careful when fighting these in groups, as they can also push each other. Be wary when you run into multiple spiders and Flesh Hounds.
- Leaper - This is the most powerful enemy in the game, in terms of damage. While it being slow, the Leaper is twice more durable than the Long Arms and Rumblers, and it is capable of one-hitting the player.