Project Zomboid – Tips to Getting Started

A very simple, well-made guide to help you if you just started out in good old peaceful Knox, Kentucky.

Choosing Your Traits

Now in Project Zomboid, traits can be a big thing, it can be the difference between life and death.

SO to hit things off, pick one of the 22 occupations that you think suits you best, when picking your occupation you can see how many trait points you have. If you do not choose Unemployed then you will most likely have negative trait points. You cannot move on unless the trait points are a positive number or 0. In order to balance it out here are some negative traits that don’t ruin your chances of surviving.

  • Smoker – Give you 4 free trait points although requires you to smoke in order to remove stress (very easy to avoid).
  • High Thirst – Give you 6 free trait points but you will be thirstier so a counter to this is to always have drinks on you.
  • Hearty Appetite – Gives you 4 free trait points but you have to eat more regularly which can be avoided if you always have food on you.
  • Prone to illness – Gives you 4 free trait points at the cost of you being more prone to diseases which can easily be avoided along with faster rate of zombification which is pointless as you will become a zombie regardless

Choosing your positive traits are up to you and how you want to approach different situations.

I Spawned Now What

Now that you spawned, I would recommend you explore your house and when you have a chance search the kitchen for a weapon like a Frying Pan or something. You should also put on some thicker clothes that can help protect you from zombie attacks and take some food which you can find in the kitchen along with some healing items like bandages, pain killers, ect. in the bathroom.

When you are done with preparing yourself you have two options: You can stay in your home and fortify it or move to a different location. If you are in a populated area you should move away to a more quiet and low profile location that still suits your needs without annoying zombie neighbors trying to bite you.

If you want to stay in your house you should start barricading the 1st floor as zombie will smash your windows and destroy your doors. In order to barricade you need planks which can be found in sheds and garages, nails which can be found with planks, and a hammer which can also be found with the planks and nails. When you have the required items right click on a door or window and hit Barricade (Planks). You can place a maximum of 3 planks on a window or door. You can also barricade with a propane torch and metal sheets which can also be found with the planks in a shed or garage. Right click on a window or door and hit Barricade (Metal Sheet) and bam.


During your time in the game little symbols will show up on the right of your screen, these are moodles which tell you how your character is feeling.

Since there is no hunger bar or anything you have to rely on the moodles to help keep you alive. In order to have no moodles you must fulfill your character’s needs. There isn’t much to be said about these moodles but if you are unsure what a moodle does, go on the wiki or something.


Sooner or later you will encounter your first zombie probably outside of where you spawned. To deal with the zombie enter combat mode by holding Right Click or Left Ctrl then when you are close enough hit left click to swing your melee or push with your hands. You can shove with a melee by pressing Spacebar which can knock over a zombie which makes it an easy kill. If a zombie is on the ground, walk over to their head while in combat mode and hit the Spacebar which should stomp them and kill them.

You will know if they are dead because they will look flattened and if you try to swing or stomp you will just swing at the air or push. I would recommend using a bladed weapon like an axe or something that isn’t a knife since you can kill them easily without having to stomp them. Eventually you will find guns which I recommend you use if you are completely surrounded or something as shots attracts more zombies. Before picking a fight with a crowd of zombies I would recommend you practice by killing lonely zombies this way you can learn their behavior.


Throughout the game you will get injured whether its from tripping and scratching yourself to getting shot by an idiotic friend. In this section I will go over the various wounds and how to treat them along with the supplies needed.

  • Scratches – Most common injury all it needs is a ripped sheet, adhesive bandage, or a bandage to patch it up. Be sure to change the bandage if it is dirty so you don’t risk getting an infection. If the wound is infected disinfect it with alcohol wipes or a bottle of disinfectant.
  • Lacerations – These are a little more serious but can be fixed like a scratch.
  • Bites – I will go more in depth about bites in the Zombification section as bites are serious but for now, they can be treated with bandages.
  • Lodged glass or bullet – Remove the glass or bullet with tweezers or your hand and bandage it up if it isn’t a deep wound but if it is a deep wound then find a sewing kit and use the needle and thread to stitch the wound up or use a suture needle to also stitch it up.
  • Deep wounds – Stitch it up with with a needle and some thread from a sewing kit or using a suture needle from a first aid kit, a hospital, doctor’s office, or an ambulance.
  • Burns – I don’t have any experience with these but I imagine they heal over time and don’t need any supplies.
  • Fractures – I also don’t have experience with these but splints should do the trick which can be found in hospitals, doctor’s office, or an ambulance.


When fighting a zombie you may have slipped up and have gotten scratched, lacerated, or bitten. You may think you are fine but you have put yourself at risk and may have sealed your fate.

Any attack from a zombie has a chance of giving you the zombie virus. If you have been scratched you have a 7% chance of getting of being infected. If you have been lacerated you have a 25% chance of being infected.

And finally if you have been bitten you have a 100% chance of getting infected which means you are screwed. If you have been scratched or lacerated and are unsure if you are infected or not your character will show symptoms like being anxious and queasy.

Although you will really know if you have a fever that slowly kills you and you are a nervous wreck. if you are 100% sure you are infected you have a few options.

  1. You can find a spot to die either by bleeding to death by removing bandages or drinking bleach. If you die you can find that spot, kill your old infected self and pick up where you left off.
  2. If you don’t want your loot and want to start fresh without your old loot you can run into a horde and let them maul you which is always an option.
  3. If you don’t want to die by your own hands you can have a friend put you down.


Something that puts a smile on my face is finding weapons as they are the only way you can live in this game.

You may be tempted to not use these and avoid zombie throughout your entire playthrough but you are missing out. Every house has a melee which you can find in the kitchen, it usually is a frying pan or kitchen knife but it gets the job done.

If you want better weapons check out the police station where you can easily get guns by breaking down strong the strong looking doors or the fire station where you can get the axe which can do almost everything. The gun store should be your last stop as sometimes they may be locked down and hard to get into and if you aren’t careful you could get bit. There is not much else said about weapons as they are just a key part of this game.


Death is inevitable in this game, you can only prevent it for a certain amount of time before it catches up. You can hide for ages until you run out of food but one small mistake and you are forced to make a new character. I have died many times in many ways all because I got out of the car on the wrong side or tripped or I was tired. In the end it will happen.

This is the end of my first guide so please give me feedback of how I did.

And as always, happy hunting.

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