The Ultimate Guide to the Top Skill Cards in Dead Island 2

Dead Island 2 may seem like a straightforward first-person game where you smash zombies with melee weapons, but it has surprising RPG elements. Your character’s base stats only scratch the surface of your build. The real key to success lies in the Skill Cards. These powerful cards allow you to enhance your abilities and provide various buffs. Unlike traditional skill trees, Skill Cards can be swapped in and out at will, offering unparalleled versatility. However, with over 50 Skill Cards to choose from, creating an effective build can be as daunting as facing a horde of flesh-eaters. Before you embark on your journey through Hell-A, let’s explore the best Skill Cards in Dead Island 2.

How to Acquire Skill Cards

Before we delve into the intricacies of Skill Cards, let’s learn how to obtain them. When you begin, your chosen Slayer starts with two Innate Skills. As you level up, you’ll unlock new Skill Cards. Each level grants you a chance to obtain a new card, but the specific card you receive may vary depending on your character. Some Skill Cards are exclusive to certain Slayers, and not every level guarantees a new card. You can also acquire a few Skill Cards as rewards for completing side quests, defeating powerful Apex Infected, or uncovering hidden locations. In total, Dead Island 2 offers more than 50 Skill Cards for you to collect and equip.

A man overlooking a railing on a balcony.
A breathtaking view from a balcony. Image used with permission by copyright holder.

Expanding Your Card Slots

You’ll quickly discover that you have more Skill Cards than you can equip simultaneously. Each of the four categories of cards has a maximum limit for equipping. Initially, most of these slots are locked. However, as you level up, you’ll unlock new slots. Therefore, every level offers the possibility of gaining a new card, a new slot, or even both. By the time you reach level 30, you’ll have a total of 15 card slots available. These slots break down into five Abilities cards, four Survivor cards, four Slayer cards, and two Numen cards. Note that the Numen category is initially locked and will only become accessible after reaching a certain point in the main campaign.

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The Finest Skill Cards for Each Category

Examining the ground pound skill card.
Carefully analyzing the ground pound skill card. Image used with permission by copyright holder.

Best Abilities Cards

  • Dodge: When it comes to defense, Dodge surpasses Block in every aspect. Dodge synergizes better with other skills and keeps you agile in combat.
  • Dash Strike: An exhilarating Skill Card that remains useful throughout the game. Although it drains stamina, Dash Strike delivers a powerful palm strike capable of weakening or even eliminating zombies.
  • Flying Kick: Upgrade your normal jump kick to the Flying Kick, an excellent opening move in most situations. Choose it over Drop Kick for higher damage.
  • Ground Pound: Feeling overwhelmed? Perform a ground strike to create space for healing. The resulting shockwave destabilizes nearby zombies, allowing offensive usage as well.

Best Survivor Cards

  • Safety First: Pair this card with Dodge, and enhance your dodging abilities. Every successful dodge restores some health, allowing you to conserve healing items and maintain aggressive gameplay.
  • Wrecking Ball: Improve your Flying Kick by equipping Wrecking Ball. Each deadly kick also weakens zombies, making it even more devastating.
  • Vivisuction: If Dash Strike captivates you as much as it does us, consider adding Vivisuction to your build. This card grants health regeneration with every successful strike.
  • Short Fuse: Unlock Fury mode and monitor your Fury meter. If you find activation to be too slow, Short Fuse allows you to unleash your rage with only half a bar.

Best Slayer Cards

  • Janus Rage: This valuable passive boost increases your stamina when your Fury bar is full or provides a damage boost when it’s not.
  • No Mercy: Take advantage of your weapon’s status effects with this card. Any damage dealt to a zombie afflicted with a status effect inflicts even more damage.
  • The Limb Reaper: Health regeneration becomes a priority, and the Limb Reaper delivers. This card restores health for every severed limb, ensuring you stay in excellent condition amidst the chaos.
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Best Numen Cards

  • Corpse Blossom: Harness the power of status effects with Corpse Blossom. Any zombie killed while under the influence of a status effect turns into a bomb, damaging nearby enemies with an explosion of the same type.
  • Born Survivor: Naturally, you start with this Numen card, and it’s wise to keep it equipped. With Fury activated, an otherwise fatal blow triggers an explosion. This drains your Fury but grants you a chance to regenerate health by attacking for a short period.

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Now, armed with this knowledge, go forth and conquer Dead Island 2 as the ultimate Slayer!

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