Dead Island 2: All Curveball Locations and Effects Guide

Broadly speaking, curveballs are a variety of back-pocket game changers that are one of your best survival tools dead island 2. Here’s all of the curveballs, what they do, and when to use them. (All the time. All the time.)

For more information on how to use curveballs, see our Curveball User Guide.

Frag Out: All Curveball Locations and Effects in Dead Island 2

There are 13 curveballs in total dead island 2. While a few will eventually become obsolete, they all have their uses. If you’re having trouble with the game, especially in the beginning, there’s a chance you’re not realizing your full curveballs potential.

meat bait

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Carlos, the vendor in Emma’s living room in Bel-Air, offers this for free during Call the Cavalry.

The first curveball you get is also the most consistent benefit. When a Flesh Bait is thrown, it creates a coarse puddle of flesh (see above) that will attract any walker, shambler, or runner, even if it means walking into fire or acid. Most Apex Infected don’t seem to notice the bait, with the exception of Slobbers.

It pays to keep Meat Bait equipped for most of the game just to keep nasty strays off your back. Note that hitting a zombie will draw their attention back to you.


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When you first reach the Halperin Hotel map, you can see it sticking out of a car in front of you.

When thrown, the shuriken shoots out three plate-sized stars in a flat arc. They do some damage, but the main purpose of the shuriken is to maim zombies. Before you get yourself a decent rifle, your shuriken is your best bet for long-range dismemberment.

There is a combat challenge, Ninja, where you have to dismember 3 zombies at the same time with a shuriken throw. The best way to complete Ninja is to lure a large number of walkers or shamblers into one place, then stun them like the Flashbang and try to rip their legs out.

chemical bomb

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This is at a point directly on your path as you pass through the Halperin Hotel. It is required to overcome some obstacles that you encounter immediately after so that you effectively cannot miss this.

The Chem Bomb explosion puts out fires, places puddles of conductive liquid, and inflicts the Drenched Effect while briefly stunning any zombie hit by the bomb itself. This includes most Apex Infected like Crushers, which can be a lifesaver in the early game.

While the Chem Bomb can put out burning zombies, it doesn’t appear to do anything other than make them less environmentally hazardous. They are still immune to fire even if they aren’t At Fire.

pipe bomb

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As you enter the Checkpoint Tunnel that separates Beverly Hills from Monarch Studios, you’ll find the Pipe Bomb in an open box on the table to your left.

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While the Pipe Bomb is useful when fighting your way through this checkpoint, it’s not that exciting after this point. The Pipe Bomb doesn’t do as much damage as you might think and can sometimes jump out of the way before detonating. You need a little practice to get the most out of it.

Unfortunately, it’s quickly becoming obsolete in the face of better guns, firearms, and its big brother, the Sticky Bomb.

Electric Star

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You’ll find this from the inside fence of the Beverly Hills Water Treatment Plant (above), right at the start of Justifiable Zombicide.

If you miss it here, the Electric Star will also show up in Rodriguez’s inventory after “Cremains of the Day” at Venice Beach for $1,500.

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The Electric Star asks, “What if the shuriken were also electrified?” The Shuriken deals slightly more damage on hit and throws 3 projectiles at once, while the Electric Star deals instant physical damage plus the Electrified status to a single target.

However, like the Pipe Bomb, the Electric Star is quickly outperformed by later curveballs, most notably the Electric Bomb. It has its utility for setting up environmental kills, but the Electric Star is already a bit of a niche by the time you get it, and will only become so as your arsenal improves.


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This can be found when exploring the Brentwood sewers, next to the office in the filtration access and maintenance room.

As you might expect, the Molotov sets targets on fire. This instantly inflicts the Burning status and creates a short-lived ground hazard that ignites anything in its vicinity. It’s a classic for a reason, and handy on the rare occasion that there’s no other way to set everything on fire.

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However, as we found with the Kremator mods, half of the zombies in Hell-A are specifically immune or resistant to fire. That limits the Molotov’s usefulness, but it’s fun to use.

Caustic Bomb

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Complete the side quest The Rav-Ages of Caustic X in the Halperin Hotel. To begin, answer Hana’s radio call on the way out of Monarch Studios to “O Michael, Where Art Thou?”

The Caustic Bomb is molten, so it shares the Pipe Bomb’s habit of bouncing a little further away than you’d like, but anything caught by the detonation takes light damage and is hit by the Melt status effect. The bomb also leaves a buildup of solvent in its wake, so it’s an excellent bottleneck hazard if you place it correctly. Hazmat Zombies, Slobbers, and Firefighters are immune to Caustic.

lightning strike

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Once you complete the Cremains of the Day side quest in Venice Beach, WO Rodriguez will be ready to trade with you. She’ll sell you a Flashbang for $2,500.

I didn’t give Flashbang enough credit on my first run through the game, but it’s the dark horse contender for second best curveball behind Meat Bait. Zombies caught in the Flashbang’s blast radius all suffer the Traumatized status effect, stunning them and opening everything in the center of the blast for a counterattack.

The real bonus here is that the Flashbang works on Apex Infected, making it a useful tool against hard targets like Inferno Crushers (above). Otherwise, it’s an area stun that you can use to clear some space or reposition yourself.

nail bomb

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If you visit Thalia Residences on Ocean Avenue, you will find this curveball in the only open plan apartment on the second floor. This is open once you get to Ocean Avenue, but you’ll also eventually be directed here to meet up with Tisha if you’re following the main quests.

The Nail Bomb’s frontal damage is relatively small, but it inflicts a full dose of Bleeding on any zombie within its blast radius. Of course, Bleed immune targets like Spiky Walker hardly notice the Nail Bomb, but this is a useful curveball for throwing at crowds.

Sticky Bomb

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Once you can do business with Dougie in the bar at the Serling Hotel, he’ll sell it to you for $1,500.

The Sticky Bomb is the natural upgrade of the Pipe Bomb and does not pop off. You can use it to hit a zombie (above) and watch it explode a few seconds later (below). Alternatively, you can use sticky bombs like proximity mines or simply as a timed detonator for environmental hazards.

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After extensive testing, the Sticky Bomb deals significantly more damage than the Pipe Bomb or Military Grenade. So if you’re looking for raw DPS, this is the curveball for you.

bait bomb

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After completing The Search for Truth on Ocean Avenue, return to Dougie and he will sell you this for $3,500.

It’s the meat bait, but it also explodes. What’s not to like? The Bait Bomb doesn’t deal any significant damage to Apex Infected, but it can eliminate a much of hikers and runners in a hurry. Even better, it doesn’t have an elemental component, so it affects all zombies equally.

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Note that the bait part of the bomb lingers for a while after the bomb goes off and works the same as the meat bait.

Military grenade

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Complete the side quest “Boz Makes a Bang” in Monarch Studios. This is part of the Bobcats chain, so you’ll also need to complete The Rav-Ages of Caustic X and Dez and the Mother of Satan.

Unlike pipe or sticky bombs, the military grenade detonates on direct contact with the ground, a wall, or a zombie. The resulting explosion won’t more than annoy a crusher or slobber, let alone anything heavier, but for quick crowd control it’s hard to argue. Meat Bait combined with a military grenade will have plenty of zombie hordes out of your hair in no time.

Electric Bomb

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Complete the Lost & Found quest “Jo’s Secret Hideout” in Venice Beach.

This is basically a Shocking Walker blast that fits in your pocket. The Electric Bomb detonates in a lightning field around its landing zone, causing everything nearby to become Electrified. This is excellent for stunning/killing entire hordes of zombies and detonating whatever is currently in the surrounding block removed flammable or destructible. You should make sure that you and your teammates have a good distance.

For more Hell-A survival tips, check out our dead island 2 leads hub.

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