The following are strategies for the Virus plague type. Please feel free to add your own strategies, tips, and Q&A here:
The following is a complete gameplay guide to the Virus plague type, created by the strategist Mack. Below will be many tips on how to play it:
Abundance of DNA pointsEdit
The obvious distinction between Virus and the other disease types is its ability to rapidly mutate. This, of course, can be obnoxious, but when it is harnessed effectively, can be used to one's advantage. When a disease mutates, it gains a trait without players needing to spend DNA points to acquire it, therefore saving one points that can be used later. Assuming that the mutated trait isn't doing more harm than good to a player's attempts to destroy the world, they can quickly stockpile these saved points to upgrade whatever they'd like.
Also, because a quickly mutating plague is unavoidably going to kill and infect people much quicker than a plague where one must upgrade every trait themselves, they're usually going to acquire a flood of DNA points.
Potential for high scoresEdit
As a virus mutates very quickly, one will find that people are being infected and killed at record time. If they can maintain the right balance of infectivity and lethality throughout the game, the virus will wipe out the world extremely quickly - which makes for very high scores.
Potential to overwhelm humanity before they can develop a cureEdit
When a player begins to try games on Brutal or Mega Brutal difficulties, they soon discover that subtlety is no longer an option. Humanity will quickly discover a player's disease even if it has no traits via 'Mystery Plague' riots or just anomalous blood tests, so they must overwhelm them before they can develop a cure. Virus is ideal for this. Within just a few hundred days, a quickly mutating virus can infect the entire world and bring it to its knees, killing off everyone before they can finish a cure. When the strategist beat Virus on Mega Brutal, the mutations that made his disease lethal were quickly key in his victory.
Inability to control and hideEdit
If you are a Plague Inc. player who likes to lurk, undetected, until the entire world is infected, then you wait until every last person in Greenland is unknowingly sick and you have one hundred DNA points until you leap out with every lethal trait the game has to offer. Well too bad, you're playing with a virus now.
This plague type mutates so quickly that it's nearly impossible to keep it undetected. Unless players willing to burn all their DNA points devolving, they're going to have to let some mutations be. And that means humanity will find you, hunt you down, and mercilessly slaughter you. Unless they get the pace perfectly right, viruses will either kill all of their hosts before the entire world is infected, or be cured faster then one can say "Plague Inc."
Possibility of severe DNA lossEdit
When one is dealing with the virus, they can either have a surplus of DNA points or not enough. It all depends on how they react to random mutations. One cannot devolve all of their mutations, unless the gene Creationist is added at the beginning of a game. Instead, they must wait until serious symptoms evolve, like tier 3 symptoms Fever and Diarrhoea, and devolve them when they mutate. This is an easier way one can win Virus.
Gameplay: Strategic AdviceEdit
And now that the advantages and disadvantages of Virus have been listed above, it is time for the how-to of making use of advantages and avoiding the disadvantages.
Some of this may not work for you, but Plague, Inc. is unpredictable, so what works one game may not work the next. So instead, what the strategist is going to try to do here is lay down some general rules to follow, that should be useful in all virus rounds. But again, Plague, Inc. is unpredictable, so players should do what works for them. And without further ado, here it is:
What Symptoms, Abilities, And Transmission Traits Should I Get? Edit
I plan to keep this section as short as possible. Why? Because every game is a little different, and I'm never going to cover all the bases. Even if I somehow wrote down every single possibility as to what could happen in the game and how to solve it, nobody would want to read it. That would be boring, and take all the fun out of the game. And so I'll just give you some very rough outlines as to what you want to do.
Start at Saudi Arabia. Get Water 1 & 2, Air 1, Tier 1 & 2 symptoms, Cold Resistance 1, Drug Resistance 1, Genetic Hardening 1 & 2 in that order. After every country is infected, get Skin Lesions, Viral Instability 1, 2, & 3, get all cure delaying symptoms, and save the rest for Genetic Reshuffles for the end.
General Guidelines: Casual Edit
Most Plague, Inc. players serious enough to go to this wiki will have already beaten the Virus on Casual. If you are, however, struggling to beat the Virus on Casual, I'm here to help you out. I'm guessing that you don't have many genes to modify your genetic code with at this point. That's okay, you can beat it without them. (I'm not, by the way, just saying this while I have all my genes maxed out. To make this article I removed all of my genes just to see how I'd do).
We've already gone over some possibilities of where we might want to start your disease. Pick whichever one you feel is best.
As for the actual gameplay, it should be fairly simple beating the virus. My first rule of thumb for all attempts to beat the virus is to let it mutate. At the casual level, people aren't going to notice a little cough and some nausea for the first part of the game. Let it mutate, save your DNA points, and use them for something other then devolving every mutated trait. At this level, I'm not going to tell you to neccesarily evolve Viral Instability right at the start. After all, you don't want to mutate your virus so much that it evolves Total Organ Failure before a billion people are infected. Let it mutate, but don't let it get out of hand. Although humanity may not notice a cough, they're definitely going to notice a rash, cysts, or vomiting. Keep it under control.
Humanity will find your virus sooner or later. Luckily for you, they won't do anything about it quite yet. Once they find your virus, my advice is to allow those symptoms to spread. Infect as many people as possible, though try to keep it at a low lethality for now. Once humanity starts to freak, however, my advice is to pull the trigger. If they start getting close to having the cure at maximum priority, your only chance is to wipe them out. Feel free to go wild at this stage.
However, every once in a while you're going to get an island nation uninfected with it's ports closed. My strategy for dealing with this is to keep killing off the rest of the world, until cure research is severlyy crippled. Then I devolve most of the lethal traits, and wait for Extreme Zoonosis to infect them. When I beat the Virus on Mega Brutal, I needed this strategy. I don't insist you do much in this strategy guide, but I am going to implore you to get Extreme Zoonosis.
With any luck, following these guidelines will give you success within a few tries. Feel free to let me know if you have any improvements on this strategy in the comments below!
General Guidelines: Normal Edit
For me, my strategy with Normal is about the same as my strategy with Casual. Again, don't try to devolve every mutation that comes your way. In the early stages of the game, I do tend to devolve certain symptoms that will attract a lot of attention (such as Cysts), but besides that I recommend letting Coughing evolve. It is nearly impossible to hide a virus disease type while still keeping your DNA points up, so don't try. "Let it go but keep it in check" is the new motto of the day. Remember it.
As with Casual, let your disease have more mutating freedom when it is discovered. They've already spotted it, so it won't attract too much more attention if it's patients start breaking out into cysts. At this stage of the game, still keep it on a leash; people will notice if their fellow humans are dying in droves. Save complete death and destruction until 90% of the population is infected and humanity is already pouring it's money into curing you. Once they do, you have no choice but to knock them out. As for uninfected island nations with closed borders, refer back to my "casual guide."
Normal and Casual are almost identical to each other in difficulty. Brutal and Mega Brutal, however, are in a league of their own.
General Guidelines: Brutal Edit
By the time you get to the Brutal difficulty, you're going to need some tweaks to the genetic code of your disesae. There is really only one DNA gene that I consider absolutely vital in this game, and that would be the Catalytic Switch. This is helpful right from the middle of the game to the end. When humanity starts to freak, you have a reliable source of DNA to help you keep evolving traits. When you pull the trigger and people start dying in droves, the extra DNA points it gives you will be helpful in evolving a couple more lethal symptoms or slowing down cure research. When it's near the end of the game, and your flood of DNA points from dying people has turned into a trickle, then the Catalytic Switch is whats going to give you the points you need to fend off humanity for a few more days while you wait for their governments to fall.
As for the rest of the genes, I honestly don't think they're game-changing. Sure, they're nice to have and all, but I honestly think that you could beat the game on mega brutal without any. Except maybe Catalytic Switch.
While making this guide, I'll have you know that I did play through and beat Virus on Brutal without any genes. Don't you worry, first time Plague, Inc-er. You'll be all right.
To be perfectly honest, beating Plague, Inc's Virus on Brutal isn't too bad. In fact, in general, your strategy is going to be similar to beating it on Casual and Normal. Again, you want to let your plague mutate, but stay away from symptoms that will make your disease noticeable in the beginning. In the meantime, work on transmission and abilities.
Once people discover your plague, let some more symptoms mutate, but stay away from the lethal ones. After all, you don't want humanity focusing their research on you when only a billion people are infected. Speaking of which, now might be a good time to upgrade Genetic Hardening. You might also consider buying some Viral Instability at this point to help your disease along. This is a bit of a gamble, of course, but you'll need to get used to Viral Instability if you want to beat the virus on Mega Brutal. That's all I'm saying for now.
As with Casual and Normal, start killing people off as soon as humanity starts to pour money into curing you. Even if you have a few places that your disease hasn't taken ahold of yet. After all, even if you do kill off all the infected in said not-very-infected place, you can always re-infect them later with Extreme Zoonosis after cure research is crippled. Also as with Normal and Casual, take away lethal abilities when research speed has been severely crippled, if some island nation is still uninfected. Then just wait for Extreme Zoonosis to work it's magic.
My friends, whether you're an experienced Plague, Inc-er or a complete newbie to the game, you should be able to beat the Virus on Brutal, even if it takes you a few tries. Mega Brutal, however? It's a whole new ball game.
General Guidelines; Mega Brutal Edit
Observe the line of dots below.
Although this is a rather crude graph, I believe it will get the point across. First, look at the dot on the far left. That dot is the difficulty of the Virus on Casual. Now look at the dot just to the right of it. That dot represents the difficulty of beating the Virus on Normal. It's harder than Casual by a fair amount, but is still a fairly small distance away in the grand scheme of things. Moving onto the third dot, we see that the Brutal difficulty is a fair distance away from the Normal difficulty's dot. Still, it's not a huge distance away. And then we see the fourth dot on the far right. Yes, that dot represents Mega Brutal. The big one. And let me tell you, it is not easy to beat any plague type on Mega Brutal (except the Neurax worm, but that's another story). But we try, and this guide is hopefully going to help your efforts succeed.
To be perfectly honest, I'm not sure if it was skill or just luck the two times I beat the virus on Mega Brutal. When I did beat it, it came down to a nail-biting (for me, at least) wait for Greenland to become infected while the remaining infected people slowly died off.(everyone hates Greenland, Madagascar, etc.) And that wasn't even as intense as beating Mega Brutal with a Prion, which came down to waiting for people in Iceland to start being infected quicker than they were dying off, as the cure became 98% complete. What I'm trying to say is, Mega Brutal is no joke.
However, having beaten Mega twice in a row now, I feel that I can give you some useful advice. The first rule for beating the Virus on Mega Brutal; throw caution to the wind.
Seriously. I'll tell you the only way I know how to beat the Virus on Mega Brutal, and that is by letting the virus go wild with it's mutating. The first thing I did both times I beat it was evolve Viral Instability to the max. Before I evolved any transmission trait, any drug resistance or temperature resistance, any anything, all three Viral Instabilities were purchased. And then I just let it go. I evolved the transmission and most of the abilities, while mutations took care of the rest. I only devolved two things during the first half of the game (these were, if you're curious, Cysts (I didn't want them finding my disease too early), and some super lethal trait (I forget exactly what it was, but humanity would've freaked if it had been unleashed too early)). And it worked like a charm. For some reason, they let it spread without worrying about it too much, and by the time they did half of them were dead already (remember "potential to overwhelm humanity before they can develop a cure"). Very soon every country but Greenland was infected. After that it was a simple matter of decreasing the population to 500 000 000 and then devolving all the lethal traits. Greenland was infected five minutes later through Extreme Zoonosis, I re-evolved one or two more lethal traits, and voila. That exact same storyboard happened both times I beat the Virus on Brutal.
And that is really all the advice I can give you for Mega Brutal. Go for it, and I know you'll soon get it.
Guys and gals, I really hope this strategy guide helped you. What it all really boils down to is get out there and try whatever the heck you want. With a bit of luck, you could beat the virus with any strategy. This strategy guide is merely one option.
That being said, I hope that you'll check out my soon to come strategy guides. I'm thinking that the Prion or the Neurax Worm will be next (after all, they're the only other ones I've beaten on Mega Brutal!). In the meantime, thanks again for reading, and I'll see you around.
Want another opinion? Check out other strategy guides here.
- Start Country: Norway
- This country is good to start because it has direct ship access to Greenland and Iceland, but still has bordering countries for a plague to spread by land. The idea is to complete the Zoonosis and Bioaerosol transmission trees and also Drug Resistance 1 for fast spreading while your virus quickly mutates, and when everyone is finally infected, you kill them with Total Organ Failure. A couple things to note are getting Genetic Hardening 1 before it pops up that Country X is starting a cure, this will drastically slow down cure percentage, making it easier to max out your Transmission trees without to many DNA points put into Genetic ReShuffle.
The following should be evolved (in order):
- Water 1
- Livestock 1
- Drug Resistance 1
- Rodent 1
- Bird 1
- Air 1
- Genetic Hardening 1 (If you can, get 2 before countries start to work on a cure)
- Water 2
- Air 2
- Rodent 2
- Bird 2 (Do this one earlier if you get the Extreme Bird Migration Event)
- Livestock 2
- Drug Resistance 2
- Genetic ReShuffle 1 (Skip if you got Genetic Hardening 2 in time)
- Extreme Bioaerosol
- Extreme Zoonosis
- Heat Resistance 1
- Cold Resistance 1 (forgot about Iceland?)
- Heat Resistance 2
- Rash, Sweating, Skin Lesions (If your virus didn’t evolve these naturally)
You also want to make sure that Total Organ Failure doesn't come too early, as it will kill off everyone before you can spread across the world. Devolve this symptom if you don't have at least 99% of the world infected, but once you do have 99% infected, make sure you have enough DNA points to upgrade to this, as it is the best for killing people fast. If for some reason you don't have enough points to get Total Organ Failure, Viral Instability 1, 2, and 3 are usually cheaper and are a great alternative. If you have extra points after this focus them on Genetic ReShuffle upgrades.
Here is an excellent strategy for getting Virus done and getting some of the modification genes! First play on Casual difficulty (Play on Normal if it is you want to unlock Fungus), and use these genes if you have them: Cytochrome Surge, Teracyte, Sympto-Stasis, Darwinist, and Extremophile. So what you want to do is start off in China, then buy these upgrades in the order I say:
- Air 1
- Water 1
- Air 2
- Water 2
- Cold Resistance 1
- Drug Resistance 1
- cold Resistance 2
- Viral Instability 1
- Viral Instability 2
- Get Fever Failure to kill faster.
- Upgrade all Transmissions (if the Cure went up to 50%)
So what will happen is you will get the world infected in NO TIME, and don't devolve the symptoms that are mutated. When everybody is infected, buy pretty much any symptoms, During my first time playing this strategy, I got every single one by end of game. Have fun getting those genes in around 5 minutes.
A way to beat Normal and Brutal is below:
- Start country: (Always) Norway.
- Start buying fully upgrading of Viral Instability.
- Buy some Transmissions like Livestock 1, Water 1, Air 1, Insect 1, Rodent 1, and also the abilities Drug Resistance 1 and Genetic Hardening 1.
- Before you could do #, make sure you have 50 DNA Points reserved for emergencies at 20% or below of cure progress, and one must be infecting the 90% world including Greenland and New Zealand (Just make sure all countries are getting Infected).
- Now buy Coma and Total Organ Failure or if you already have that using the Viral Instability, upgrade instead more viral symptoms and Genetic ReShuffle 1.
Results: You conquered the world with few minutes to eat your lunch, kick back and feel good for yourself finishing the Virus infection all over the country.
Recommended Gene Setup:
- Catalytic Switch/ATP Boost - Those two are the best choices.
- Base Oxidisation - Primary element of this strategy.
- Teracyte/Aquacyte - If you are going to spend some DNA in Water transmissions, go with Teracyte.
- Extremophile - You all know why.
- Sympto-Stasis - You're going to pour a lot of DNA in symptoms.
Now we can proceed with the guide.
DON'T DEVOLVE NOR EVOLVE ANY SYMPTOM UNLESS INSTRUCTED.
- Start in India.
- Purchase Viral Instability 1,wait for some more DNA and purchase Viral Instability 2&3.
- Wait and collect DNA. If the first two mutations were transmissions, evolve Rash, Sweating, Cysts and Nausea. If one of them(or both) were the symptom mutation, proceed.
- Purchase Water 1 & Water 2 transmissions (If by chance they mutated, skip this step).
- By now your disease is known to the world, if you mutated Necrosis, Fever or any lethal symptom, devolve it.
- Purchase Drug Resistance 1, Cold Resistance 1 and Genetic Hardening 1&2.
- Now wait until you accumulate 40 DNA or so, and most countries get infected.
- If the cure reaches 30%, evolve Insomnia, Paranoia and Seizures. This is the point where your plague starts killing.
- Change of rules: DEVOLVE EVERY LETHAL SYMPTOM (Excluding Seizures of course).
- Now the DNA Boom from biohazard bubbles should occur. You should have over 100 DNA. Evolve Drug Resistance 2, Cold Resistance 2, Heat Resistance 1, Abscesses, Tumours, Pneumonia and Inflammation (Evolve every preceding symptom if they won't mutate.)
- Lucky you who had chosen Catalytic Switch, because now Cure Bubbles start to appear, and with this gene you can collect more DNA. Now (if every island country is infected) purchase Necrosis, Sneezing, Fever and Immune Suppression.
- When cure reaches 80%, purchase Genetic ReShuffle 1, Paralysis, Insanity and Coma. Also to boost infectivity at last, purchase Bird 2.
- Watch the world die, and if you want more Lethality, evolve Hemorrhagic Shock, Dysentery, and Total Organ Failure.
And That's it!