10 Tips for "Plague Inc."

Updated on February 25, 2019

What would it take for some sort of contagion to wipe the human species off the face of the earth? Well, if you play Ndemic's addictive new disease simulator/microbal murder RPG called Plague Inc., only about 10 minutes.

For those not familiar with the game, it gives you the option of trying to steer seven different types of contagions through multiple mutations in an attempt to infect and kill every single last one of those damned dirty apes.

It's hard out there for a plague though, so here's ten tips to help you get your extinction event on.

1) Spread. Then Make Dead.

It's simple, you need to infect everyone if you're going to kill everyone. It is almost always the right play to spend all your early DNA points to increase your Armageddon plague's infectiousness. It depends a bit on your strategy, and on the game mode, but you've ideally already gotten the majority of people, and nations infected before any serious effort starts to cure your plague.

There's three ways to lose at Plague Inc. You can have your plague be cured by the world's scientists before you've killed everyone, your plague can kill too quickly and burn itself out even in countries you've managed to infect, or your plague can fail to even reach some countries (see tip two) resulting in condition one or two. The easiest way to avoid all three pitfalls is to really focus on transmission upgrades for quite a while in the early game.

2) Hold Out for the Holdouts

Some nations are notoriously hard to infect (cough, Greenlandbastards, cough), because they have limited access and specific climates. Islands often only have boat contact with other countries, practically making it a requirement to get at least level one of the water transmission upgrade early on in every game. Madagascar, and the aforementioned Greenland are the worst offenders, because they also have very hot and very cold climates respectively, making it tougher on some plagues. Morocco can also stymie efforts, since it just has road access. If your plague gets too scary too fast, the Moroccans will just close their borders, kill all their livestock, and pigeons and try to wait the disease out.

Definitely try to get infected folks in these enclaves before the real killing starts up.

3) Pay Attention to the News Releases.

Is there a major bird migration coming up? Have global weather patterns resulted in more rain lately? Have doctors discovered new insight into tumors, making them less effective? Plan your disease upgrades accordingly and the game will go better for you.

One event that always seems to occur is the London Olympics. So long as your disease hasn't manifested as too severe, has at least level one drug resistence, and has spread to at least a couple countries, the Olympics gives you a free chance to infect England. Seeing as England is a major plane and boat hub, that is a very nice thing to have happen.

If you're in a close race to beat the global cure effort, pay special attention to any symptom that doctors have "a new understanding of (symptom X)" since if you use DNA to grab that symptom, the global cure will automatically gain a few percentage points! Also, if the iTouch cure device is being promoted, it is often worth the DNA to buy "Rash" followed by "Sweating" just to ensure the hands of the infected are too sweaty to work the device (also saving you from giving the Global Cure a boost).

If you forget what a news item said, just click on the scrolling news bar to see a complete list.

4) Pick Your (Symptom) Poison.

In the life of every species-anniahlating microbe there comes a time when it just makes sense to go in for the kill with gusto.

Remember, if infection rates are already pretty high, it is often possible to sell off some of your transmission upgrades for a few extra points of symptoms!

To get the most out of symptoms, know what you're really going for. At level one, the most useful symptom is often 'coughing,' since it draws very little attention to the disease, but gives a nice bump to infectivity. Also at level one you can get the symptom combo "Walking Dead" by buying 'Insomnia' and 'Anaemia.'

Symptom combos give you bonus effects, making your precious DNA go further. Other combos include projectile vomit (coughing and vomiting), and public defecation (insanity and diarrhea).

But besides combos, you should also have a sense of what groupings of symptoms will work best for your strategy/game mode. If you find yourself racing the cure, start with Insomnia and Cysts. Then you can unlock things like Insanity and Coma, which both ups your plague's severity, while also making finding a cure considerably more difficult.

If quick spread, and quick kill is more your style, start with Coughing and Rash. You'll soon unlock Necrosis, which will help your goals nicely.

In terms of flat-out killing power, nothing beats Total Organ Failure. If you've already infected enough people, it's often worth it to go straight for this one. Then just sit back and wait the world go dark.

5) Virus and Bio-Weapon Tips

When playing as a virus or Bio-Weapon, you'll find yourself racing the clock, as your disease will have a mind of its own, often mutating symptoms well before you'd like them to appear. In the case of the Bio-Weapon, the plague will steadily gain in deadliness even without symptoms.

Use the special upgrades in the Ability section to help control these overeager microbes, and try to spread as absolutely fast as possible. Late game, try to use their natural tendency to mutate deadly symptoms to your benefit. Use your later DNA toward infecting those last holdout countries, and on things like 'Gene hardening' to help keep the cure efforts at bay. Let the plague mutations do some of the killing for you.

6) Parasite and Prion tips

Both these diseases excel at flying under the radar. Especially with the Parasite, you shouldn't have any trouble waiting until virtually the entire world is already infected before an effort to find a cure seriously begins. Both have serious late-game challenges though.

Parasites gain very little DNA in the later portions of the game, compared to other plagues. That can leave you high and dry if you have no DNA left after spreading it. The key is to not spend a lot of your early DNA on upper level Transmission upgrades. Just let the 'Symbiosis' ability of the parasite keep those silly humans from detecting the disease too soon, and let the infection spread at a slower rate. Then, with your stockpiled DNA you can wreak havoc.

Prions are innately so subtle that your plague won't be detected for a long time. Unfortunately, it takes a long, long time to do its job. the key here is to do what you can to stall. The Walking Dead symptom combo is good, as is the Prion's special ability, which helps muddle the brains of all those scientists you infected months before they knew what was going on. Gene hardening is also your friend here.

7) Fungus Among Us

The fungus is slooooooow to spread to other countries. Definitely grab the Air and Water transmission upgrades quick with this one. Birds are another good one, helping to spread the disease across land masses at least.

The Fungus bloom abilities are tempting, but remember, each use ups the cost for all other upgrades on the Ability tab, making things like fighting off the cure, or adapting to extreme climates tougher down the line. One technique that seems to have success is to use two or three bloom upgrades near the start, to hopefully get a free fungus spread to another continent for faster overall spread, or to a hard-to-reach island. Then just focus on the traditional transmission upgrades as you wait for the spores to find their way globally.

Do not let a single symptom stay active until you are ready. you can't afford early detection since fungus just takes too long to get to every country.

8) Nano-virus Blues

The nano-virus is a swift killer ... which is good since the cure effort starts as soon as you begin. That first "cure" attempt seems almost completely separate from the usual cure effort. Use the Nano-Virus ability to slow and stop the cure command early on, buying you time to spread the nano-bots more like the other plagues.

9) Don't be Afraid of Throttling Back

It's the endgame, and you're in a race to see if your disease can kill off the human race before a cure can be found. Maybe you still have a small percentage of the global population to infect along the way. Be careful that especially in those last few countries you infect (damn you Greenland!) that your plague isn't so lethal that it burns itself out before its had a chance to infect more than a few people.

It may be necessary to actively devolve the really fatal symptoms, just to give your plague's infection rate a chance to outpace its mortality rate. Just press the "Disease" button at any time to ensure you aren't killing faster than you're infecting.

10) Have a Good Name!

Be creative and fun with that disease name, after all, you may get it on top of all your friend's leaderboards.

Here's a few I've enjoyed using:

Ass Bloom, Fungamung, 0111011011, Blurpies, NipMites, ChodeWorms, ChonchRot, DerpDoom, NoseMoss, NanoWhaa?, BluWaffle, Panicne.

What are some of your better disease names?

Questions & Answers


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      • profile image

        Lol kitty 

        2 weeks ago

        My brother called his disease death and when he looked at the world screen it would say "death" has not been noticed.


      • profile image


        2 weeks ago

        Mine it's girlfriend name "Nevena" eradicated humanity... Works fine

      • profile image

        Jack Smilex 

        5 weeks ago

        I use "nothing" a lot.

        "nothing has started in italy"

        "nothing to eradicate humanity"

        It's just ridiculous

      • profile image


        2 months ago

        Not to worry, CERTAINDEATH seems harmless.

      • profile image

        3 months ago

        I generally use Mormonism or Jesus. Seeing Jesus has eradicated humanity is just perfect.

      • profile image


        5 months ago

        Captain Jack, of course.

      • profile image


        6 months ago

        Mine are either 'Fortnite' or 'Ligma'

        "The last healthy person on the planet recently became infected with Fortnite"


      • profile image

        Some Girl 

        9 months ago


        "Communism begins in Russia."

        "Communism to eradicate humanity."


      • profile image

        A really weird Bubbleruler 

        11 months ago

        "North Korea" eradicates humanity

        ; (

      • profile image


        12 months ago

        I always name mine Azerty (the name of the French-language keyboard). It just sounds so deadly...

      • profile image


        14 months ago

        I love using my most-hated teachers names. It's hilarious.

        Also, I sometimes use "This" As a name

        "This" Is killing very fast.

      • profile image

        Some User 

        16 months ago

        "Facebook" is killing very fast... hahaha.. XD

        And better yet, "Democracy" starts in USA. "Democracy" to annihilate humans.... wahahahahhaa..

      • profile image


        18 months ago

        My best disease name is The Plague

      • profile image

        A human 

        18 months ago

        Mankind. Enough said.

      • profile image


        19 months ago

        My go to name is TeenageAngst

      • profile image

        Altjon Hametaj 

        20 months ago


        cooties awareness day. hehe.

        national cooties day, hehe.

        cooties has eradicated humanity, hehe.

      • profile image


        22 months ago

        Feminism has been cured

      • profile image


        22 months ago

        Puberty is mine,

        Puberty is killing very fast!

      • profile image


        23 months ago

        I use qwerty. First thing I thought of

      • profile image


        24 months ago

        I call my bioweapon homework

      • profile image


        3 years ago

        I like Wartime

        But I'm going to try some of the ones I see on here

      • pumpkincat210 profile image

        Courtney Rhodes 

        3 years ago

        funny...does a good name actually help you win? in my experience it has, coincidence?

      • profile image


        3 years ago






      • profile image

        Marco C 

        3 years ago

        Obama eradicating humanity was fun

      • profile image

        Harold Jacobson 

        4 years ago

        "Aliens" about to destroy humans !

      • profile image


        4 years ago

        I liked free t-shirts

        Normal life in egypt starts to break down due to free t-shirts

      • profile image


        4 years ago

        Call it *your name* pox, eg I call it Jamie Pox

      • glenn wallace profile imageAUTHOR

        glenn wallace 

        4 years ago

        Mad Scientist: If I recall, the key to bioweapon is to try to keep it's lethiality under control for as long as possible. Devolve as much of the symptom genes as soon as you can, and pump as much DNA as possible into the other two trees THE WHOLE TIME. Bioweapon mutates into lethal symptoms on its own quite easily, so when the time comes you can just take your 'foot off the brake' and let it kill.

      • profile image


        4 years ago

        "Jaimito to eradicate humanity"

        "A cricket killing very fast!"

        "Hitler to be eradicated"

        My favorite ones ;)

        Oh, and when I use bacteria I use Quantum, in brutal, QuantumV2

        And Parasite and Prion are called Phantom and Spectre, in brutal, the V2 at the end too ^-^

      • profile image


        4 years ago

        Religion, HugeTits, brainfart (for the brain worm)

      • profile image

        Mad Scientist 

        4 years ago

        My Plague name...

        Bacteria : TRX-69

        Virus : RYX-81

        Fungus : FGX -77

        Parasite : RGX -666

        Prion : DRX-89

        Nano Virus : LSX-99

        I have not reach bio weapon yet... Because i can't beat the nano viru yet... Anyone can help me? I'm using the free mod....

      • profile image


        4 years ago

        fungus and name it Jock Itch

      • profile image


        4 years ago

        I would die crying if a disease called Analfungus was to destroy humanity

      • profile image


        5 years ago

        Stupidity destroyed humanity

      • profile image


        5 years ago

        Bieber Fever has now killed everyone on Earth

      • profile image

        William JCM 

        5 years ago

        My plague name is "War". Why ?

        "If we don't end war, war will end us."

        - H. G. Wells

      • profile image


        5 years ago

        Named one "Bieber" and another "Religion" It was so funny reading the news about how humanity survived Beiber and how Religion crushed humanity :P

        No offence to all you religious out there!

      • profile image


        5 years ago

        My favorite name so far is "internet." Makes for some funny news articles...

      • profile image


        5 years ago

        I call it "KatyPerry"

      • profile image


        5 years ago

        Nothing awareness day

        SWAG has eradicated humanity

      • profile image


        5 years ago

        My favorite name is simply: Genesis

      • profile image


        5 years ago

        Something. That's what I call mine.

        'Something has been noticed'


        oh, I also had Hope and Kindness. Oh, that was funny.

        'Kindness has eradicated humans' xD

      • profile image


        5 years ago

        The name I like most is Peace.

        Peace has eradicated humans. :)

      • profile image


        5 years ago

        Derpies. 'Nuff said. Perfect for a Prion.

      • glenn wallace profile imageAUTHOR

        glenn wallace 

        5 years ago

        Lots of good ones! FartyButt makes my inner 6th grader chuckle.

      • profile image


        5 years ago

        I like to use variations of "(adjective) kitty". Started off as SoftKitty in honor of Sheldon Cooper from big bang theory. Then Mad Kitty for necroa. Any cheat one is God Kitty. But then just for fun I like "my ass" too...it always makes for a good chuckle.

      • profile image


        5 years ago

        FartyButt has eradicated humanity! XD

      • profile image


        5 years ago

        I like 'ginger' for the pop up ' ginger awareness day'

      • profile image


        5 years ago

        T-virus of course !

      • profile image


        6 years ago

        I named my disease Hope.

        Funny expressions:

        Hope is spreading fast.

        Hope has eradicated humanity.

        I'm spreading hope. That's supposed to be a good thing, isn't it?


      • profile image


        6 years ago

        my disease name is Nexus05

      • stestifie profile image

        Stephanie Pyper 

        6 years ago from Las Vegas, NV

        Those are all hilarious. Very nice hub, voted up and more! I very rarely read Hubs from beginning to end but yours was awesome!

      • profile image


        6 years ago

        "Hardwork has eradicated humanity"

        Now who said a little hard work won't kill you...

      • profile image


        6 years ago

        ButtNaked , has infected the world.

      • profile image


        6 years ago

        asspain was fun because the news stuff was hilarious every time it popped up

      • profile image


        6 years ago

        The world is focused on curing your mom ;)

      • profile image


        6 years ago

        All I named my disease was "Death".

        ...The world is now concentrated on curing death...

        He he.

      • profile image


        6 years ago

        I enjoy the name "Love".

        "Love" has erradicated humanity.


      • profile image

        Plague inc playa 

        6 years ago

        My personal favorite is " buttfudge"


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