Guides:Guide to Forming Groups Part 2

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Continued from Part One, which is more general advice and should be read first. This section is about dealing with typical scenarios you will encounter on the road to group greatness and has some general survival advice for your group.

Your Survivor Group: A Timeline

Here's the step-by-step, blow-by-blow walkthrough of the lifetime of your survivor group. I'll take you through, from your first steps to managing and maintaining your established and successful survivor group.

Disclaimer: I have over a year of experience leading the Anti-Zombie Squad, as well as an alt with membership in Team Xtreme and what I say is based off of what I have seen in these groups and in others. It may be different from what your experience will be.

Your First Month

The first thing you want to do after making your group is to get members. Your odds of success go up if you have a decent number of people from the very start. They can be friends, family or just random safehouse buddies that you happen to know in Urban Dead.

The beginning of your group will be slow. If you are a fresh, unknown group, you can expect group-hood to be underwhelming unless you are charismatic as hell. Recruit aggressively however you can, and only perform your other survivor duties as necessary. Accept as many interested players as you get- you won't be attracting exactly the best and brightest at this point, so you can't afford to be too choosy.

After getting more than a few members, your focus should be learning how to survive effectively in most situations and developing your identity as a group.

To develop your identity, you need to build your groups' framework from the ground up. This includes your forums, your policies, your advertisements, and your standard operating procedure. You can hash out the fine details later, but you need eliminate confusion and aimlessness by thinking about membership standards, chain of command, long-term and short-term goals, barricading policies, reviving policies (if any), the exact role in Malton you plan to take and anything else that might come to mind. The rest of your identity will come about naturally, as your group develops a personality and some favorite tactics.

As for survival, Suburbia 101 in the Group Strategy section gives some tips on basic group survival. Trial-and-error learning will do the rest.

Recruits

Not all recruits are equal in the eyes of a group leader. In the interests of simplicity, I will list some typical recruits you will be likely to encounter, in order of good to bad, and how to handle them. Not all recruits will neatly fit in these categories, use your judgment. "Discipline/punishment" means warnings, demotions, and possibly kicking out of the group.

  • The Badass- The ideal recruit. He's loyal, mature, competent and friendly, all almost to a fault. He can be left to his own devices without causing any issues or messing up too badly. Keep him close by your side and treat him well.
  • The Normal- A fairly "ordinary" person. He has nothing wrong with him. He's reasonably loyal, moderately competent and a pretty nice guy overall. Treat him like you treat the Badass.
  • The Talker- A colorful, strong-willed sort. He talks a lot, has a lot of quirks, and wants attention, but is usually reasonable about it. He may cause trouble now and then, but he spices up the group and makes it fun. Gently reign him in if he gets out of control, but otherwise indulge him.
  • The Obsessed- Very dedicated to UD and your group and spends more time than is healthy on the wiki, the game and your forums. This is good, as you can harness that energy, but beware that this sort of player often burns out and quits. Give him something useful to do and make sure he doesn't overdo anything.
  • The Ghost- This recruit is silent- he barely communicates and instead silently works behind the scenes. His dedication may be questionable, or his real life is just busy. He doesn't follow group announcements/orders much (due to lack of communication) and doesn't add to "team spirit." Find a reliable way to get orders to him and or convince him to be more active, if possible.
  • The Fool- Well-meaning but just too eager. Although enthusiastic like the Obsessed, he often skips reading orders or group rules in his haste to get things done. Has a tendency to piss off others. Keep a very close eye on him, and don't be afraid to discipline him if he insists on doing something you don't want.
  • The Bum- Does almost nothing and isn't competent. He just punches in and punches out and will very likely leave the group at some point. Too lazy to do much good. If you can, convince him to be more active. Otherwise, don't count on having him around.
  • The Wannabe- Ambitious and talks big, but has nothing to back it up. Not loyal, mature or competent. He may end up backstabbing you or leaving for another group. Keep him very close, and ensure he can't do much damage if he wants to ditch or attack your group.
  • The Drama queen- Wants positive attention and reacts immaturely to negative attention. Prone to drama (obviously) and is very emotional. Be careful what you say, and find a good way to shut him up when he's engaging in drama. Punish him when he overdoes it, and don't trust him too much.
  • The Trenchie- An aggressive idiot. He just wants to go out an kil tem zombiz!1111 Unlike the Fool, actively *ignores* orders and policies you set out for him and does his own (likely idiotic) thing instead. Unless you're fine with this, discipline him regularly. Don't trust him under any conditions unless he wisens up.
  • The Jerk- Your everyday asshole, who either derives most of his pleasure from suffering, including yours, or just does not give a damn about other people. Even if you can harness his energy well, he'll eventually turn on you one day once bored. Exclude him from important matters and immediately bring the hammer down hard when he steps out of line.
  • The Closet Zerger- Self explanatory. Punish hard immediately upon detection and strongly consider kicking him out, considering this sort is likely an enemy spy.

Fun fact: A way to filter out Fools, Bums and Trenchies is to have all group applicants follow easy but specific and unusual instructions in order to get in your group. Chances are the Fool and Trenchie will skip it and make the standard "I can haz let in?"-type of application, and the Bum will be too lazy to go through with it.

Getting Established

Once your group has enough enough strength and experience to adequately defend itself, you will need gain influence and establish your group as a real force in UD, through knowledge and allies. Don't forget to tend to recruitment and your normal survivor duties, however, those are still very important.

Knowledge

Very, very important. Read a lot of survivor Guides. Read up on the wiki page about your suburb and about game mechanics. Scout your suburb thoroughly and figure out where all the best zombie targets, hiding spots and fallback points are. Talk often to allies about survivor tactics. Remember, knowledge is power.

Allies

Once you've managed to put your house in order, you'll want allies, either groups you just like and wanna be friends with, or as partners in the war on zombies/PKers.

Now, be careful. There are several factors to judge when determining how useful or likable a potential ally will be, and you should evaluate those when figuring out who to ally with.

  • Distance. This is obvious. Closer groups can help you more. Mobile groups, as allies, will not always be around to help you, but will gladly move over to help you if you give them enough reason.
  • Compatibility. Another obvious thing. You want to be sure that your goals and group themes align reasonably well with theirs. I hopefully don't have to explain how to tell if another group is similar to yours.
  • Tendency for drama. Whoo boy. Some groups, who shall remain unnamed, especially zerger groups, bring drama wherever they go and piss off even would-be allies for one reason or another. Make sure you know the popular attitude towards a famous group before committing anything to them.
  • Age. This is an important one. Older groups (12 months+) are reliable groups. They've stuck around for this long, so they'll likely stick around some more. For younger groups (less than a year), their reliability is doubtful- even if they seem enthusiastic now- so be careful when counting on them.

And remember, if you ally for business, don't overestimate your alliances. If you've randomly asked a lot of people to be allies, and they reply, "Sure, whatever, man", that does NOT mean that you now have a ton of buddies on your side ready to kick your enemies' asses at your command. That only means you have been acknowledged- no more, no less! You will have to work on moving from the initial "okay, we know each other" stage to the "we work together now and then" stage, and then the "We'll gladly die for each other" stage if you want them to help you out. As in real life, you only get out of the relationship what you put in.

When you do manage to score an ally, do your best to keep in touch with them if you want to keep them as an ally. Have a diplomat (or yourself) sign up on their forums and check up on them every month or so, and invite them to any public events/parties you throw or hear of. If you drop off their radar, as in real life, it may be awkward to suddenly reconnect with them when you need their help. It helps relations overall if members of your group have alts in their group (be sure to avoid alt conflicts though!).

Also, it is in fact possible to be on good terms with enemy groups. That's just good sportsmanship, being worthy opponents or friendly rivals to each other. It prevents future drama with them and makes your UD life a lot richer by having "frenemies" around. Who knows? Their members' alts, and the groups those alts are in, may even help you out because of that.

Going to War!

Sooner or later, you'll get established, and you'll want to do more than simply survive and fend off the zombie menace. Unless you're a non-aggressive reviving- or roleplaying- based group, you will want to take the initiative against the undead and drive them out from where they threaten you and yours. And this is the section for triumphing over the undead menace.

Your Strikes/Raids

If your group is decently organized and wants an edge in battle, you will need to arrange strikes, also known as raids, which are coordinated attacks in which multiple of your members act in real-time to accomplish the same goal. Strikes usually require that you use an IRC of some kind for quick communication.

Strikes are great because they allow you to quickly pool individuals' AP into an large-scale attack before your enemy can react or recover. Strikes can be used for reclaiming buildings, killing PKers, foiling a zombie strike in real-time and "suicide repairing" (repairing buildings with very high AP repair costs).

Remember to be clear about the time, location and purpose of the strikes you create. Announce strikes at least a couple days in advance, and make sure everyone knows about it. Include your allies in the strike if you can.

Remember that not everyone is in the same time zone or can make it at a given time, so you will want to announce the strike in American time (usually CST) and British time (GMT), as well as any other important time zones in your group. Ask everyone would be good for them. And remember that the strike can take place on different days depending on the time zone. A time zone converter can be found here.

Victory/Defeat

If you win your first battle, learn to make the most of it. Add a written record of it to your propaganda, secure the territory you have gained, throw a party for morale purposes, and remember what you did right and try to do that again. If any enemy groups were defeated, tell them they were a worthy opponent or don't talk to them at all. Don't cause drama by gloating or insulting. And don't get cocky, or you'll lose your edge.

On the other hand, you must also learn how to take defeat well. This means moving to the nearest safe suburb, reviving your dead, restocking on supplies, achieving some easy goals to recover morale, and most importantly, learning what you did wrong so that it doesn't happen again. Morale will take a hit, but it won't be too bad if you stay upbeat about it and improve from the experience. And possibly vow to take revenge and win in the same scenario in the future when you are stronger. That'll pump up your troops.

Bounty Hunting and You

"Wounded PKers are bounty hunter crack."- Josh Clark, leader of Team Xtreme

Sooner or later, you're going to have to make the choice of how much you want to involve yourself in the bounty-hunting business. Bounty hunting can be really fun, but it has a lot of costs as well, and definitely is not for everyone.

Bounty hunting distracts from other tasks, brings drama, will get you killed often, will piss you off often and doesn't exactly have widespread appeal in Malton. You can meet a lot of PKers who are decent and fun people, but you will also have to encounter complete scumbags who you would not meet if you were not bounty hunters.

Now, you can decide to avoid any PKer-killing, kill PKers only in self defense, kill PKers when convenient, actively kill PKers as much as zombies and exclusively focus on killing PKers. The last option more or less demands that you be nomadic and that you will have very limited recruitment and strategic influence in Urban Dead. Avoiding killing PKers is also hard, since you will have to turn the other cheek when PKers eventually attack you. For these reasons, most groups range only between the second and fourth options. In the end, it's all up to you, your personal preferences and how willing you are to accept bounty hunting's costs.

GKers are a special case, since they're just a nuisance not worthy of death and the worst you can do is wound them as a warning. However, if said genny was particularly important, say, the genny in an NT siege, by all means, kill them, even if they don't have a Rogue's Gallery bounty, because you don't want the important genny to go down again.

Now, if you do decide to actively bounty hunt, get familiar with Rogues Gallery and Resensitized, the PKer and zerger databases to see who you can kill. These systems are far from perfect, but bounty hunting without them is flying blind. Just be careful and check your intended targets' entries BEFORE shooting them to avoid drama. You can substitute Rogues Gallery with other groups' lists of people to kill, but these lists are often limited in scope or don't update anywhere as often, so be careful if you do.

Regardless of what path you take, don't hesitate to report any survivor on survivor killing you encounter to Rogues Gallery. Take a screenshot (I recommend UDWitness) and submit it to Rogues Gallery so that the PKer will be easier to track down and kill in the future.

Scoring Big

Eventually, if you put enough effort into your group, if you play your cards right, and if you just keep persisting, you will become a sizeable group with more than a little influence in Urban Dead. This will take a while, quite possibly a year or more, and probably requires more patience than is reasonable. But, it can be immensely satisfying. It is about this point that the game's true complexity and strategy will show.

Your Expansion

You'll want to expand sooner or later, and flex the group muscles that you have spent the last year or so cultivating and training, for both fun and reputation. There are a few ways to pull this off.

  • Challenge yourself. Going to war with a zombie (or PKer) group is fun. Even if you lose, you learn a lot about their tactics (as well as your own) and have fun fighting the good fight. If you win, you get to show off your strength and brag about your victory over the big bad X group. There are other ways to get a challenge besides war, but I'll leave those to you to figure out.
  • Events. Yes, events, as discussed in Part One, can be a ton of fun and if your group is big and influential, that'll only help the party get started faster.
  • Physical Expansion. Hey, if you're big enough, why stick to one suburb? You can go nomadic, as explained below, or you could expand your territory and influence over multiple suburbs nearby your own. When you are big, think big.

It's up to you what to do once you hit the big time and get the freedom and power to do whatever you want. A few situations you might enter at this point are below.

Metagroups

Metagroups (AKA Organizations)- Defined as large groups that combine the efforts of other groups for greater power. Results will vary . Often, an overambitious upstart pops out of thin air and declares something like, "Hey everyone, let's totally take over Malton!" and then gets nowhere. Big surprise. Examples include the completely obscure and failed RRA and Pro Survivor Alliance.

However, meta-groups started by already-established groups and their allies are very powerful, sometimes even unstoppable. Take for example, Big Bash, Alliance 45 and theNew Malton Colossus. All accomplished crazy awesome things and steamrolled opponents that their component groups could not. But remember, these guys started from something first before forming their metagroups, and they had carefully-made and thought-out PLANS to go with their ambitions, not just "win over bad guys."

The principle behind metagroups is that they focus a lot of survivors into one point and easily overwhelm smaller groups/hordes of zombies. If you do get a metagroup ball rolling or are a central part of that ball, you can expect great things IF you know what you are doing. Metagroups are both powerful tools and major challenges.

If you already know how to run your group, running a metagroup is basically the same thing, except with the difficulty scaled up, since you have to deal with a lot more peoples' drama, balance between varying agendas, and keep track of who is available for what. This all shouldn't be too big a step- the basic aspects of forming a group still apply to a metagroup- it helps if you have a good name for it, a charismatic leader/leaders, delegate responsibility wisely, invite a lot of (decent) people in, be diplomatic on the side of caution, etc.

Ghost Towns

Sometimes, you'll want to re-populate a ghost town for some reason or another. Guides:Ghost Town Reclamation- This guide pretty much covers everything about taking back a ghost town. Recommended reading if you plan on taking back ghost towns anytime soon.

Nomadism

Consider nomadism, the act of moving constantly without a fixed home suburb, if you feel up to the challenge. It provides more opportunities and more adventuring and you get to meet enemies when you decide, not when they come to you. However, it is a lot of work to do, having to plan your movements, keep your members together, and constantly adjust to a new place.

Nomadic groups include the AZS, the MOB and the Skynet Defense Network.

Keep in mind that you will have to ditch your home suburb, which can be hard to do as you may have developed an attachment to or strategic reliance on it. Nomadism is a big step, after all, and bodies at rest tend to stay at rest.

A compromise is halving your group into a nomadic arm and a stationary arm. This is a good idea if you want to experiment with nomadism or want to allow your members to pick whichever type of mobility they enjoy.

Mixed nomadic/stationary groups include the Knights Templar, the RRF and The Wraiths

Maintenance

Your group may, after a long, long while, reach a critical mass where it basically takes care of itself, minus a few pushes you have to give it now and then. At this point, you can relax, delegate out responsibilities, and go along for the ride, organizing something big now and then, but letting your members and lieutenants take care of the rest. Remember to keep your group numbers at least stable, make sure you take care drama before it escalates out of control, and keep your as members as happy as you want to. At this point, most of your responsibilities end and you, as leader, are free to do whatever you want.

Sometime or later in Urban Dead bliss though, though, you'll consider...

Leaving your group

All good things come to an end. Eventually, you may want to or are forced to leave Urban Dead and your group. When you do, your group doesn't have to end too. Just pick a good "heir" to appoint as the new leader, make sure your heir knows what you want the group to be like and say good bye and give everyone closure instead of rudely disappearing.

If you feel like coming back to Urban Dead, make up your mind to either return and stay for a while (and whether or not you want to re-instate yourself as leader) or just check up on the group and then leave. It's frustrating when a respected leader says he's back for good and then mysteriously disappears two week later.

And, if your goodbye is indeed final, make your departure epic. Not merely saying "I had a fun time, bai gaiz!" Too many good leaders do that. You ought to go out in a blaze of glory. Beer-bottle zeds to death, set a PKer on fire, make a fiery goodbye speech that would fit right into Patton, host the craziest IRC party ever, inspire the troops one more time before leaving and so on. Don't go gentle into that good night, have a blast! It's the right thing to do.

Group Strategy

Good/Bad Policies

There are some Urban Dead group behaviors you should follow and some you shouldn't. Many are controversial.

  • Reviving in general- If your groups revives at all, for the love of God/Allah/FSM/deity of choice, PLEASE scan before reviving! The last thing you want to do is to blindly and stupidly waste a syringe helping a zerger, griefer or career zombie kick your ass. Or trying to revive a Rotter, which will make your syringe useless in the first place. Don't let it happen, scan before reviving! Randomly reviving does not help you or the survivor cause.
A special note: reviving PKers (with the exception of dedicated griefers and assholes) and otherwise ignoring them can draw their interest away from you, resulting in your group being PKed much less. It's a decent solution if you're a non-bounty-hunter group getting PKed often, although whether or not it's worth having more PKers alive in Malton is your decision.
  • Combat Revives- This is controversial. The advantages are that you can quickly remove non-brainrot zombies from combat, the disadvantages are that you can create PKers and help parachuting by combat reviving the wrong zombies, which can get ugly. It's your choice, but if you are not sure, err on the side of caution and don't.
  • Meatshielding- Another controversial policy. I believe that while meatshielding delays zombies, but it delays both the meatshielder and his reviver even more. Meatshielding gives a short-term advantage that will thus be paid pack later, and it will only slow down large zombie hordes anyway. It's useful in empty or nearly TRPs, since unattended TRPs are highly vulnerable, but otherwise, meatshielding is usually a net loss of AP for the survivor cause. Avoid it.
  • Killing Zombies Outdoors- The only good reasons to be killing zombies outdoors are a) newbs who need XP fast and b) taking down rotters clogging up revive points. Don't kill zombies outdoors otherwise. It wastes uses 20-50-ish of your AP (including searching for ammo), to damage 1-11 of their AP. Pointless and a great way to get a reputation as idiots.
  • Spying on enemy groups' forum with an alt as a member- This is unethical and indicates a total lack of decency. Don't do it.
  • How to handle PKers, zergers and GKers- See above section "Bounty Hunting and You."
  • Zking/Life Culting- Your mileage will vary. ZKing is only good for XP and allowing survivors to dump bodies, but the more creative Life Cultists have more useful options available. You might believe that either is simply a waste of AP, and save your AP only for when you use it as a survivor. Either way is legitimate. Your choice.

Suburbia 101

There are a number of basic procedures to keep you and your members alive. These are the basic defensive survivor tactics. You already know how to survive as an individual, but this a refresher course for what to tell your members to do. Read survivor guides on this page instead if you are interested.

First thing- not all buildings are created equal. Just as some are better to search in, some are better to sleep in. Sleeping in TRPs, especially Malls, Forts and NTs, is a bad idea. They attract PKer and zombie attention. Forts in particular are huge zombie and PKer magnets, which is why forts are usually ruins. Churches and large buildings (mansions, power plants, cathedrals and stadiums) are also bad, because though less "tasty" than TRPs, they're hard to defend. So, do your best to avoid ending your day in TRPs, Forts, and other large buildings.

Better places to sleep include "boring" buildings, such as museums, libraries, junkyards etc., as these don't attract much attention. The best sleeping spots are dark buildings, especially without generators, since zombies and PKers that waltz in will have reduced accuracy. Do note, however, that you can't detect or dump bodies in dark buildings, so if someone dies in a dark building, get out ASAP. Also, a rule of thumb- any non-TRP with more than ten survivors is unsafe to sleep in because zombies will eventually find out that there is a lot of food and will break in. Don't put your eggs all in one basket- spread your group members out in buildings that aren't heavily occupied.

As for defending TRPs, the order of priority for survivors and zombies goes roughly: NTs/Malls > Hospitals > Auto Repairs/Factories (gennies = life!) > Fire Stations/PD > everything else. Your priorities may differ, but that's what I have found works for me.

Reserving your APs is always a good idea. If you have the time to play UD later, save 10 or so AP for an emergency when possible, since you might check back , only to discover that now you need to run, barricade, heal or attack. You won't regret saving up the AP to do so.

Scouting safehouses is situational and not recommended. You lose the scouting bonus, and your 30 AP, if you die or the building is ruined, both of which happen a lot. 5 bonus AP a day and getting more out of your favorite TRP is tempting, but only scout if you plan on being in a very safe suburb for a while. More detail here.

Keeping zombies out of buildings- The best method is having members scout around, taking note of the general situation and any building that needs help. Barricade Strafing is a good tactic to prevent break-ins and waste zombies' AP. Simply "strafe" a bunch of buildings, and watch as zombies futilely flail against the 'cades. Such buildings can also become Pinatas however, so be careful.

Now, dealing with zombies in buildings. If the building has more a few survivors, killing and dumping is a good idea if survivors outnumber zombies at least three to one. Otherwise, find another way to help out, because they're probably screwed. Remember, you can still barricade with only one zombie inside, so a good option is to 'cade up the other survivors deal with it. Now, if the building has no or few survivors, it's your call, but know that some break-ins are not worth handling.

If the building becomes a ruin, kick out any zombies in there and pay attention to repair cost- the longer it's ruined, the more AP it costs. If there are too many zombies inside, wait. The crowd will disperse, then once the numbers inside are manageable should you start repairing, with a coordinated strike if necessary. If there are still too many zombies after a week or so, chances are there's a zombie group dedicated to holding the building, in which case you will have to ask yourself if taking the building is worth it.

Sometimes, the whole suburb will become one big red ruin. You have two options then: move out or hide. Moving out is wise if you have a nearby safe suburb. Move out, restock, and reach out into the first suburb with the second suburb as your temporary base. The second option, hiding, is not so easy, but may be necessary if you don't want to abandon your home or if there is nowhere safe nearby. In that case, I recommend hiding in plain sight. It's still risky and hardly glorious, but it sure beats dying endlessly.

So, what to do if you do contract a nasty case of death? Each of your members should carry at least two FAKs at all times, in order to cure infections, especially after being revived. If you get revived but are out of AP, Dirt Nap to avoid becoming free food by AP'ing out in an inconvenient situation.

If your group revives, coordinate by making a "revive request" section of your forum (whether it's public or private depends on how generous you feel), and consider a private, group-only revive point, which allows your revivers to stick group members without having to look through random zombies. This revive point should be near an NT for convenience. Also, revivers should add your group members to their contacts lists, so they can identify and needle dead teammates without the need to scan and save precious AP.

Finally, as said before in this guide, pissing off people is a bad idea, since whoever you piss off will likely refuse to help your group, prioritize attacking your group over others or even go out of their way to get you. So, before you mouth off to a PKer or a zombie, or try anything that could be interpreted as obnoxious, think of the consequences.

Active Defense

When going beyond merely defending yourself and working on actively fighting zombies, step one is to know your enemy.

At equal levels, zombies are superior to survivors in almost every way. That's a fact.

Zombies can recover from death with minor penalties, attack more efficiently, infect survivors, death-cult if revived, interfere with survivors by sleeping in the right place, and attract more zombies via feeding groans. They are also generally better-organized, have more PKers on their side, and don't need supplies.

Survivors have the advantage of barricades, short bursts of high damage via firearms or combat revives, and, usually, a slight advantage in total numbers. That's it.

I know, it sounds bad.

The lesson NOT to take from this is "you're screwed because zombies will win in a fight." The real lesson is "you should avoid taking on zombies in a direct fight."

You will get nowhere when you try to beat the undead up or knock them down to win the battle. Don't meet force with force- you will be eventually worn down, while they will stand back up over and over again. Instead, keep them from getting to you in the first place.

I have earlier stated that survivors have only three advantages over zombies. Just the first advantage, barricades, cancels out many zombie advantages. So it's not as bad as it sounds. On average, it takes zombies 4 to 5 AP to take down what survivors spend 1 AP bringing up. That's why survivor victories almost always happen behind barricades, and survivor defeats happen when barricades go down. With wooden boards constantly presented to them instead of brains, zombies will eventually will leave the suburb in search of better eating elsewhere. Barricades are life.

Based on these facts, you have three options when at war with zombies, especially organized zombies- outlast them, frustrate them and dodge them. Know that everything previously mentioned in Suburbia 101 and the Force Multipliers section in Part One still applies, so you should review those sections.

Now, simply outlasting zombies is the most common and easiest method, but also the one that takes the longest. Pointers:

  • Have the right supplies. You want DNA scanners, syringes, FAKs (lots!), ammo, and toolboxes (for fixing ruins and generators). If lots of other survivors are around, you can rely on them for extra FAKs, gennies and fuel. If not, pack those as well.
  • Know your priorities. You want to protect what benefits you most. Mall > Library, for example. Now, if the Mall or another TRP is screwed and going down, don't waste your AP on it. Grab what you can and focus elsewhere.
  • Be careful with AP. Don't dump it all into keeping your ammo overflowing or something needless. You might find yourself short of AP when you need it for an emergency.

Eventually, you'll find the zombies will be discouraged by the lack of food or lack of action and so will leave.

The second approach is frustrating zombies into leaving the battle. It's really risky- there's a fine line between royally pissing them off and inspiring them to go "Barhah" on you, and merely annoying them *just* enough so their morale plummets. Frustrating them consists of setting up empty QSB/VSB decoys, taunting them verbally or with graffiti (don't be an asshole, though), combat reviving (choose wisely!), and ZKing with your zombified members or allied life cultists. Again, this method is very risky, and you will have to learn through trial-and-error before it works, but it will pay off well if done right.

The third approach is dodging and outmaneuvering them. Seems fairly obvious- figure out where zombies are attacking and have all the survivors not be there. It's hard to pull off because the majority of survivors won't listen to you and some people are very attached to their TRPs. But, if you somehow manage to empty out a target, you'll defeat the zombies by denying them food and XP.

One Important note I must add: You are not the big damn heroes. Your group are not the super-special badasses who will end up crushing the zombie menace and being adored for your epic zombie-pwning skillz. That what trenchies think, and they never amount to anything. Don't be a trenchie. You are simply a part, although an important part, of the great survivor war machine. Work with other survivors and don't jump into battle thinking you're the Chosen Ones. If you actually are that good, then angels will sing from upon high whenever you cap a zombie. Unless that happens, check your ego and don't expect special consideration from other survivors. And if that actually does happen, consider seeking professional help.

Sieges

For TRPs, as I have said earlier, you should sleep near, but never inside, of TRPs. Always know how many zombies are outside and how many survivors are inside and how organized both are. Keep it VHB or more at all times, maintain an entry point nearby, kill and dump zombies as they come in, and the rest is fairly simple.

If you really need the TRP's supplies, pick a replacement TRP in case the current one goes down, and be ready to leave and defend/retake that one at any moment.

For Malls, this guide says it far better than I ever could. Read it.

For forts... don't do forts. Seriously. Retake them if you and your allies have nothing better to do, but other than that, stay away.

That just about covers it.

Active Offense

This section is not for the faint of heart. This is about confronting zombies on their own territory and going to war with powerful zombie groups. This means you'll be jumping into red suburbs and reclaiming buildings left and right while fending off upwards of a hundred angry zombies.

What you need to know:

  • Force multipliers, force multipliers, force multipliers. Get them for you, deny them for your enemy. Morale, stealth, coordination, unity and location are the most important, but do not forget the others!
  • Know that things can spiral out of hand any time soon. Zombies are players just like you and they play smart, too. They can also adapt to your tactics. They can also bring in allies. They can also try to bore or annoy you out of your minds so that you will leave. Be prepared for if the tables turn.
  • Know what your enemies want. Different zombie groups have different buildings that are important for them, and will be prepared to fight a LOT more viciously to keep it ruined than for other buildings. The RRF has the Blackmore Building, the Feral Undead has Fort Perryn, LUE has Luellin Towers and so on. Exploit their favorite buildings as a distraction (risky!) or just avoid those buildings.
  • Use good judgment when attacking. Picking the wrong fight gets your ass kicked needlessly. You should have a safe suburb nearby you can fall back to if you lose, and you should make sure that there aren't too many zombies to fight at once.
  • Know when to fold 'em. If the fight is just too much to handle, there's no shame in saving your ass and retreating. It happens to everyone, zombies and survivors alike. Lose gracefully and minimize losses while doing so.

I recommend reading this if you're planning to retake a ghost town anytime.

Miscellaneous Things

Here are a few guides I recommend for those who want to take their group further.

This is a (much) shorter but still satisfactory guide about the same topic as this one.

Guides:Meta-Careers - Good for learning more about your members' possible roles in-game.

Grims Guide to Staying Alive - A brilliant guide to individual survivor self-defense. Many, many great tips to not getting one's ass kicked.


Thanks to

My crews, the Anti-Zombie Squad and Team Xtreme, for teaching me so much about this game, for putting up with my crap and for being generally awesome people.

The New Malton Colossus and its component members for helping me learn a lot about tactics.

Several groups (who shall not be named) for showing me what to avoid doing when leading a group.

D, for laying off the damn sheep.

The many people who commented and gave criticism on my guide, helping to make it that much less shoddy better.

And finally, viewers like you, who I write for. :P

A Final Word

After all the advice I've given, I have one last little bit of advice that will apply no matter what you do or how experienced you are.

There's only so much information I can cram into a guide. If you truly want to improve your group and achieve greatness, always keep learning and improving, from your own experience and from others. Be aware and critical of yourself and your group, so that you can learn from mistakes and figure out better ways of doing things. Never assume you know it all. Urban Dead looks simple, but it is hardly that. There is the human element present in every single zombie and survivor, which will always complicate things. That element is what makes the game so rich when you really get familiar with Urban Dead.

No one can truly lead an Urban Dead group perfectly, but you can get pretty damn close if you never stop improving.

See you on the scorched battlefield of Malton! :D

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