Dead Island 2: Best Characters To Choose

Choosing the best slayer in the beginning is crucial, because you can't change the character mid-game.

Best dead island 2 characters to choose
Pick the best slayer out of the six options

The action-roleplaying game, Dead Island 2, is a nail-biter about surviving and killing zombies. The game forces you to choose a slayer at the beginning without knowing each of their total potentials, and you’re stuck with that character throughout the game.

For that reason, we have made a guide to help you decide on the best Dead Island 2 character. Each hero is unique, considering different abilities and strengths, and choosing the right one is very important.

Key takeaways

  • You can choose from six heroes or slayers, each with different attributes and innate skills.
  • There are seven attributes: stamina, toughness, health recovery, critical damage, agility, peak health, and resilience.
  • Jacob has the highest peak health and the weakest resilience. He is well-rounded and the best Dead Island 2 character for beginners.
  • Ryan has the best toughness stat and the worst agility. He is a more defensive hero and very difficult to kill.
  • Amy, on the other hand, has the highest agility but the weakest toughness. She is agile but isn’t the best Dead Island character out there.
  • Carla is the best at resilience but the worst at critical damage. Resilience is how much she can withstand damage from explosives, corrosives, and shock. Carla is another defensive character and a great choice for beginners.
  • Dani, on the other hand, has amazing stamina but poor health recovery. However, thanks to her innate skill, she can regain her health if she quickly kills zombies.
  • Moreover, Bruno is the best character for critical damage but has the worst peak health in the game. You have to be really careful while playing him because he can die pretty quickly. However, he is a high-risk, high-reward slayer and a great choice for experienced gamers.
  • Apart from the innate skills, each character has unique skills which can be equipped as the game progresses.

The game allows you to pick from 6 different heroes, each with different strengths and weaknesses. But make sure you pick the right one because you won’t be able to change your character mid-game.


Jacob, dead island 2 character, seating on a seat
Jacob from Dead Island 2 – Image captured by Gamesual

The coolest broker-turned-stuntman you’ll ever see, Jacob is one of the best Dead Island 2 characters for beginners. He is a dark-skinned man with a short afro. Jacob used to be a stockbroker before his mother passed away. After this, he decided to follow his passion and become a stuntman.

Background And Appearance

Moreover, the British national is a big fan of keeping his sunglasses on, which makes him look pretty badass. Jacob is the perfect ‘main character’ for a zombie apocalypse, so he’s on the cover of Dead Island 2.

Jacob is the most versatile hero to choose from and has the highest peak health and amazing stamina. However, he recovers health quite slowly and doesn’t have the best defensive capabilities. So, you’ll need to stack on some food before fighting tougher enemies.

Adding to that, he has the worst resilience in the game. Remember that having a low resilience does not mean he is more vulnerable to zombies and blasts. But instead, it means that fire, shocks, and corrosives will do more damage to Jacob.


Moreover, he has the highest peak health in the game, which is one of the most important things. However, his health recovery isn’t great, so eating foods won’t recover as much health as you would want.

Attributes Rating
Toughness 3
Stamina 4
Health Recovery 2
Critical Damage 3
Agility 3
Peak Health 5
Resilience 1
Strongest Attribute Peak Health
Weakest Attribute Resilience

In addition to all that, he has two innate abilities that are unique to him, including Ferel and Critical Gains.

Jacob, dead island 2 character
Jacob from Dead Island 2 – Image captured by Gamesual

Innate Skills

Feral – This ability gives you an additional damage boost when you’re attacking a bunch of zombies one after the other. Since multiple zombies will mostly attack you at a time, the Feral ability will be quite useful if you’re attacking in quick succession.

Critical Gains – We all want a character that performs better under tough situations. When Jacob has low stamina, he will have the ability to give more Critical Damage. In addition to that, critical hits will also bring back some of his stamina. The stamina will help you in performing heavy attacks which do more damage.


Ryan being scared. In dead island 2
Ryan in Dead Island 2 – Image captured by Gamesual

Background And Appearance

Next on the list is a candidate for the best Dead Island 2 character, Ryan. Even though he has a somewhat ‘unorthodox’ past, he is a great and reliable choice. His broad and buff body tells us that he goes to the gym often.

Ryan is an American who wears a Fire Department T-shirt. However, the reason for that isn’t because he was a firefighter, but because he was a male stripper who just wants to get back to his little brother. All he wants is to be united with his brother, and the zombie outbreak isn’t going to stop him.


Let’s just say the gym paid off in the zombie apocalypse. It has given Ryan amazing defensive abilities and toughness. Moreover, he has a decent amount of health and is the perfect hero if you want to stay alive for a long. His abilities also aid in recovering health quicker and surviving for longer.

It is important to note that Ryan has the highest Toughness rating, meaning that zombie hits and explosions will do less damage to him. However, low agility means his walking speed and strafing will be slower.

On the other hand, his critical damage isn’t great, making him less suitable for you if you’re an aggressive player. But apart from that, he’s a great option if you’re a beginner to these types of games.

Attributes Rating
Toughness 5
Stamina 3
Health Recovery 3
Critical Damage 2
Agility 1
Peak Health 3
Resilience 4
Strongest Attribute Toughness
Weakest Attribute Agility

Adding to that, he has two innate abilities: Retaliation and Seesaw. These skills make Ryan amazing when fighting against groups of zombies.

Ryan from Dead Island 2 looking in the mirror
Ryan from Dead Island 2 – Image captured by Gamesual

Innate Skills

Retaliation – This perk will reward you for playing defensively. If you dodge or block an attack from the zombie, your Force will increase significantly. This will increase your chances of knocking over zombies after blocking the attack.

Seesaw – This innate skill will recover your health if you knock down a zombie. In addition to his toughness and resilience, this ability is quite helpful in tough situations. Killing Ryan just became even harder for the zombies.


choosing amy's character at the beginning
Amy from Dead Island 2 – Image captured by Gamesual

Background And Appearance

Amy is another one of the six characters that you can choose to play with. She was a Paralympian before the outbreak, but now she’s found a new hobby, butchering zombies. Moreover, the American is a young woman with black hair and a unique outfit.

She wears fish netting over her red top and black trouser. In addition to that, Amy has a prosthetic right leg with the American flag painted over it. However, the fake leg doesn’t stop her from throwing flying kicks at the zombies.


Amy really shows her Paralympic traits in the game by being the most agile character in Dead Island 2. If you’re a person who loves to play a nimble character who can work her way around zombies, you may be considering picking Amy.

On the other hand, she has extremely poor toughness, which is a very important trait. That means she is more susceptible to damage from zombies and explosives. With her peak health being quite low, in addition to poor toughness, Amy is a really bad character for beginners.

It is a common misconception in the game that a more agile character will sprint faster. However, agility only affects the characters walking and strafing speed. Even though on paper she may seem like a good choice, practically, she isn’t the best Dead Island 2 character.

Attributes Rating
Toughness 1
Stamina 3
Health Recovery 3
Critical Damage 4
Agility 5
Peak Health 2
Resilience 3
Strongest Attribute Agility
Weakest Attribute Toughness

Amy has two unique perks which help her in regaining her stamina and give her a damage boost. These include Relief Pitcher and Divide and Conquer.

Amy from dead island 2 running away from zombies
Amy from Dead Island 2 – Image captured by Gamesual

Innate Skills

Relief Pitcher – This ability allows Amy to regain some of her stamina when she throws a weapon at the enemy. This ability seems excellent; however, throwing a weapon at the zombie isn’t the most effective thing, most of the time.

Divide and Conquer – This unique skill will give your character a little damage boost when attacking secluded enemies. It’s amazing to have a damage boost in this game but you’ll rarely find yourself fighting isolated zombies.


choosing Carla as starting character
Carla in Dead Island 2 – Image captured by Gamesual

Background And Appearance

Carla is an American middle-aged female who is one of the best Dead Island 2 characters. Before she got stuck in the middle of the zombie apocalypse, she was a motorcycle stuntwoman.

Moreover, she has a muscular and strong build which assures you she can protect herself. Carla wears a white sleeveless shirt and blue, black, and white trousers. She is seen wearing white boots. Furthermore, she looks bulky and hence will be a little less agile than other characters.


Carla is one of the more defensive heroes in Dead Island 2 and is pretty similar to Ryan compared to the attributes. Her character can take a lot of damage from zombies thanks to her great toughness. Adding to that, her stamina and peak health is also pretty decent.

On the other hand, her critical damage stats are the worst among all other characters. But it is important to note that after playing the character, we see that the difference between critical damage isn’t as much as one would expect. Yes, her critical damage is inferior, but it isn’t a great enough reason to not pick her.

Besides, we find her resilience to being the best in the game. Meaning she can withstand shock, fire, and corrosive damage quite easily. She does have no agility, but as discussed earlier, her sprint speed will be the same as everyone else. Agility only affects strafing and walking speed.

Attributes Rating
Toughness 4
Stamina 3
Health Recovery 3
Critical Damage 1
Agility 2
Peak Health 3
Resilience 5
Strongest Attribute Resilience
Weakest Attribute Critical Damage

Carla is also given two innate abilities at the beginning: Mosh Pit and Dig Deep. These skills complement her defensive playstyle.

buff character named carla
Carla from Dead Island 2 – Image captured by Gamesual

Innate Skills

Dig Deep – This is a perfect skill to have for a defensive character. It makes killing you even harder for the zombies. You will receive a decent toughness boost when your health is pretty low. This means when you are weak, enemy attacks will do less damage than usual, increasing your chances of survival.

Mosh Pit – This unique skill is perfect for fighting many zombies together. When fighting a cluster of zombies, it gives you a minor damage increase to your melee attacks. And we have seen that these damage boosts are very effective.


Dani a dead island 2 character
Dani from Dead Island 2 – Image captured by Gamesual

Background And Appearance

Dani is a middle-aged woman hailing from County Cork in Ireland. Moreover, she was a retail assistant back in the day before she joined a roller derby team. Her character is determined to escape the apocalypse and meet up with her team so that they can go to their upcoming match.

 In addition to that, she has green hair tied up, and she wears a crop top with a blue denim jacket over it. Her Irish accent may get a bit too much for you. However, she is one of the best Dead Island 2 characters out there for a good reason.


If you pick Dani as your hero, fighting large crowds of zombies will be a walk in the park. Her attributes allow her to be more aggressive and destructive. Thanks to her amazing max health, toughness, and stamina, Dani is the best character for attacking.

Additionally, her stamina is the best in the game, so she can constantly make heavy attacks. That and her unique skills make her the perfect hero for crowd control. On the other hand, her health recovery is the worst in the game.

However, the health recovery stat will be compensated by her innate skill, which we will discuss soon. Consequently, besides her annoying accent and mannerisms, she doesn’t have a weakness and is a fantastic character.

Attributes Rating
Toughness 3
Stamina 5
Health Recovery 1
Critical Damage 3
Agility 3
Peak Health 4
Resilience 2
Strongest Attribute Stamina
Weakest Attribute Health Recovery

Consequently, what makes Dani the best Dead Island 2 character are her innate skills, including Thunderstruck and Bloodlust.

Dani , a Dead island 2 character
Dani from Dead Island 2 – Image captured by Gamesual

Innate Skills

Bloodlust – This skill allows Dani to regain her health whenever she kills multiple enemies quickly. It is important to note that this skill covers Dani’s lack of health recovery and makes her a hero with no weakness.

Thunderstruck – This innate skill allows a forceful explosion whenever she hits a heavy attack on a zombie. This explosion will knock back the surrounding zombies, giving you time to recover and recharge your heavy attack. Due to all this, she is the best Dead Island 2 character for fighting large crowds of zombies.


Bruno attributes and stats
Bruno from Dead Island 2 – Image captured by Gamesual

Background And Appearance

Unlike most other characters, Bruno was already living in Los Angeles before the outbreak happened. He is a smooth and cool-looking character who always has a plan. Before the outbreak, he used to pull off heists on scammers and spammers.

Moreover, he wears a purple shirt, jacket, blue shorts, and purple and white sneakers. Bruno is fully tattooed and has cool yellow and red braids, even on his face.


His life before the outbreak is reflected in his attributes. He is a stealthy character who likes to attack from behind. However, he can’t take a hit from the zombies due to his low toughness. His playstyle supports a more agile and slick user, but he has the power to damage the zombie.

Additionally, his peak health is the weakest in the game, making him a vulnerable character. You’ll always be on your toes while playing him. However, his critical damage is the best in the game. This means you can finish your enemy quite quickly.

Attributes Rating
Toughness 2
Stamina 3
Health Recovery 3
Critical Damage 5
Agility 4
Peak Health 1
Resilience 3
Strongest Attribute Critical Damage
Weakest Attribute Peak Health

Bruno’s innate skills can be used in a perfect combo. His innate skills include Backstab and Rapid Reprisal.

Bruno standing in line
Bruno from Dead Island 2 – Image captured by Gamesual

Innate Skills 

Backstab – This innate skill gives Bruno a good damage boost while attacking zombies from behind. That can either be from sneaking up on them or hitting them and strafing behind them quickly.

Rapid Reprisal – This amazing skill is a perfect combination with Backstab. Whenever you dodge or block an attack, your Agility will build up, and Heavy Attack will charge faster. This will aid you in maneuvering behind a zombie to provide the final blow right after you dodge his attack.

If you haven’t played these types of games before, choosing your character will be very important. Because you don’t want someone difficult to play or easily killed since you’re just starting.

In that case, we recommend that you pick Jacob or Carla. Jacob is an all-round character with amazing peak health, which is crucial for a beginner. In addition to that, his Ferrel ability will be perfect against a crowd of zombies.

Alternatively, picking Carla is also a great choice. She is a beast with amazing defensive stats and extremely difficult to kill. Even though she does comparatively lesser damage than other characters, she is a low-risk choice, great for beginners.

Closing Remarks

There are also some unique skills that each character has as you progress in the game. However, you don’t have to worry about them while starting, because these attributes and innate skills are more critical. Each character’s unique skill will complement his attributes.

Ultimately, it’s important to have fun and choose the hero who supports your playstyle. Furthermore, you can always start a new game from the beginning and pick a different agent if you want to. In addition to that, the game also allows a co-op mode, which they explain on their site in detail.

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