Words of advice to new players?

I’m sure these kinds of things have been gone over innumerable times, but hell, often times guides and advice don’t cover general gameplay or are typically scattered everywhere. What are the most important things you’ve learned from playing Cataclysm?
My advice:

  1. Don’t drink water from any source unless it’s purified.
  2. Avoid wolves and dog packs starting out.
  3. Avoid moose.
  4. Always bring your towel.
  5. That C4 you activated? Yeah, make sure to drop it.
  6. If a hole says it looks like it’s a long way down, don’t be a hero and try jumping down there anyways.
  7. If you don’t have the ammo to deal with a horde, use a car.
  8. If you see a mine, don’t try to disarm it. This isn’t fallout.
  9. If you’re not playing with high item drops, be sure to stockpile food for winter.
  10. If you see an enemy with tank in it’s name, don’t think you can run up to it with your staff and do anything to it. It says tank for a reason.
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This isn’t a combat game, it’s a post apocalyptic survival game. The job isn’t “kill all the zombies,” it’s “survive.”

You’d be surprised what you can (G)rab, and why you might want to.

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-Even if you don’t think you need a certain type of drug, take it.
-Alcohol isn’t just used for getting drunk, it can be used for first aid kits and turned into other useful things.
-Remember to look at your skills when picking a weapon;That weapon has higher bashing than you have cutting, but you already have high skills in cutting. Don’t choose the bashing weapon.
-Remember that lots of times when you move it will use more than the plain 100 turn things. The timer on a grenade is counted by 100 each click. That mean that if your movement is 101, and the timer has 5 clicks, you CANNOT move 5 spaces without blowing up. Moving diagonal uses (I think) about 1 1/2 movement count, compared to moving vertical or horizontal on the screen. I’ve died many a time forgetting that fact.
-Ignore what @ecchi_squid squid said, DON’T fight hordes in the first place when you are new to the game! In some cases, don’t do it at all!
-If you see an enemy you haven’t met before, be very wary of it, since you don’t know what it does or how dangerous it is!

I agree with you about avoiding hordes whenever possible, but about 60% of the time when I’m starting out I need water and I need to go to town there’s at least a group of 7 zombies near any lootable building. I just think using a vehicle is a safer alternative than going toe to toe with enemies when you’re in a pinch. Or avoiding the town period and dying from hunger or dehydration.

Don’t try to disarm mines?.. i only try at lvl 5 trapping(Think thats the skills name)
Never failed once… or do you fail only at lower lvls of trapping?
Or can it fail at lvl 5 and i’m just stupidly lucky?

I think he means don’t just assume you can disarm mines by (a) moving onto them and interacting with them, or (B) disarm them to get to lvl 1+

-Don’t assume that the damage total is the most important thing for a weapon/ improvised weapon.-

Weapon abilities (such as rapid strike) and use time can make a big difference. Know what weapon you are using, and know what enemy your fighting, differnt weapons are desirable in different situations, you may actually be better of dropping your weapon on the ground and pulling a better one out of your bag IN THE MIDDLE OF A FIGHT, then to keep using a rather innefective weapon…but…

-Get a spear/ weapon with a reach attack, as soon as possible -
-Most enemies you’ll face early can be outrun-

[using the ( " )run hoteky] you can move faster but not forever (stamina), so your best bet is to kite them for a short time doing damage, and using your environment to slow them more than you, this will allow you to kill enemies that are stronger than you. -Don’t be afraid to close a few doors-, and just cut and run if they are TOO strong.

This only applies if you have radial distances turned on, otherwise diagonals are your best friend when dealing with anything that stumbles (so all your basic zombies). If you have ACTUALLY changed these settings the opposite is true, and you want to avoid moving in diagonals while fleeing enemies


The reason for this is the way the zombie stumble mechanic works. They are uncoordinated and so will ‘stumble’ to an ajacent to target direction tile. If you are moving in a cardinal direction then a no penalty diagonal move back gets them back on track, and if you actually change directions in the same direction, they have actually short cut you.

But, if you move diagonally then stumbles do nothing, or even hurt their progress of catching up to you, especially if you are dragging a cart behind you (which will slow you, but not usually not SO much that it isn’t still an effective method of keeping them at arms legth while spearing them.

-Don’t be afraid to smash stuff-

but realize that the loot you get is lesser, but more quickly gained when done this way instead of deconstructing them.This means that lockers become a great source of useful scrap metal instead of a usefull source of sheet metal, so don’t go 100% ham on smashing EVERYTHING, but do smash lots of stuff. Its the appocolypse after all, and your suroundings are mearly resources you don’t yet have pocketed.

-You can ( C ) yell.-

This will atract things like zombies, but if done enough before getting eaten or mauled, will scare away agressive animals. So if you have 0% chance of escaping/fighting the moose, yell at it Like Gary Bucey instead. You’ll probably still die a bloody mess, but theirs a CHANCE you roll a scared by loud noise effect, same for wolves and other aggresive animals that ARN’T zombies.

I’m sure it’s 2 or 3 but last time I even stepped near one it blew up even though I could see it.

Sooo… I’m just stupidly lucky?

Also smashing and disassembling give you different loot options. I also think disassembling and butchering give you different options as well, so if you can’t disassemble something, butchering it is also an option.

Or just smart enough to know not to mess with mines at low levels XD

Hey, I noticed that my diagonal attacks were acting funny. I didn’t realize it was connected to my changing circular distance. Thanks for the heads up.

Also, XD @ Gary Busey.

Avoid the temptation of sexy Swimmer zombs in tile playthroughs lol xD

… Or make a cage, kill them, drag there bodies into it use “Zombie slave” on em and shut the door :3

…that escalated quickly lol

The fine start of a zombie zoo XD lol

Maybe some good tips would be…

  1. Run like hell if you see a Zombie Hulk

  2. Stay out of the woods at night

  3. Get Tailoring leveled up early on to repair your gear and make new gear

I like where this is going lol

You can disassemble car seats for 12 leather patches each. You also can grind tailoring up to level 7 with normal clothes and leather stuff only. Wrench and screwdrivers are among the best early game items IMO.
It’s also better to disassemble strings rather than rags for thread.

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The first point says don’t drink any water that isn’t purified. However at least in my experience the danger of non purified water goes like this from most to least swamp?>toilet>anywhere else (rivers, swimming pools etc) at least when you drink out of them directly. So while I agree that you should purify any water if possible but some sources I think you can be a bit more lenient with than others.

You can close the curtains on most windows from the inside. This will block vission, and in most cases keep monsters from breaking through them, since you are no longer displayed like a pastry in a bakery. Then you can press (e)xamine to peek through, or tear them down which gives 1 long stick, 1 long strings, 2 sheets, and 4 nails. There are SO many ways this is very usefull, not least of all is windows you have no need for, are now a source of string/thread

@kuros What you said is making me start to wonder what I’ve missed with grab… I have checkerboarded chairs in school hallways to make kiting zombies easier (2 or 3 in a line is probably bettter movement inhibiter in most cases, and something that gives better movement penalties infinately more so.

What else is usefull to (G)rab? Zombies? Does that help counter grapples?