The Lurker is a special zombie in World War Z.
The Lurker attacks unsuspecting players by pouncing on them, forcing others to come to their aid to free them as once he grabs hold of his victim, he will not let go.
The Lurker is a zeke dressed in tattered red track pants with white stripes and white sneakers. A black fitness armband containing a damaged smart device with a broken cord through the headphone slot is wrapped around his right upper arm. His right ear is pierced with a flesh tunnel ear lobe piercing. A tattoo can be seen on the right side of his back.
His pants are covered in soot stains, have many little tears, and are somewhat loose-fitting as his striped green and white boxers can be partially seen around the waistband as well as through some of the tears.
The Lurker's head, torso, and left arm have been charred and riddled with skin tears. Parts of his back and his right arm are much paler in comparison to the rest of his body. His right arm in particular is covered in countless open blisters. He lacks hair, presumably having been burnt off. His lips and most of his left nostril are gone. Portions of his flesh are gone too, exposing the bone underneath. These areas include both wrists, the lower right rib cage, the left shoulder blade, and a section on each side of his skull. The Lurker either completely lacks eyes or they are entirely black, leaving his eye sockets appearing very dark and empty.
Most notably and unusually, the Lurker appears to be radiating something bright orange underneath the skin around his left shoulder and neck.
Abilities & Behavior
The Lurker exhibits very unusual behavior when compared to most other zekes that are fought. In most cases, the Lurker can be found kneeling down low to the ground in some sort of resting position. Keeping to his low profile, he will constantly be observing his surroundings as though he is looking for something or someone. His posture seems almost human-like as it keeps one arm down to the ground while resting the other on his bent knee most of the time.
Despite the Lurker's best attempts to remain stealthy, his distinctive wheezing and growling noises give away his presence and general position. He also produces a peculiar rattling sound. Additionally, once he has been discovered or is carefully approached by the players, he will make much louder noises as he becomes more head-on with his approach. While difficult to spot, the Lurker's speed is slightly above average compared to regular zekes.
The Lurker has the ability to pounce on survivors. His pounce is always accompanied by a loud, raspy screech. Relying heavily on players not being aware of their surroundings or blindly rushing around a corner, the Lurker springs into action, knocking the player down on their back and laying an unforgiving mauling on them while they are helpless to defend themselves. While a pinned survivor will be hit with all manners of attacks ranging from scratches, clawing, tearing, and even a few chokeslams, the damage done will remain consistent over time the moment they are pounced.
While the Lurker prefers to pounce unsuspecting or careless players, there are moments when it is forced to come out of hiding and leap headfirst to snag a victim. Despite this, his ability to get the jump on a player should not be underestimated while in the open. When forced out onto the open, the Lurker's agility shines as his pounces travel quite a distance, more than one may have expected.
Strategy & Tactics
"Lurkers hide in the shadows. Listen out for their distinctive wheezing to avoid being surprised." ― Tutorial TipsThe Lurker serves a key role in ambushing players with a surprise attack. He is meant to punish players that try to rush forward, those that do not take their time to check their surroundings, and anyone overconfident in playing the lone wolf. Being prepared for when a Lurker is supposed to appear will render him little more than a nuisance rather than an actual threat.
- Never stray too far from your teammates. It is made extremely clear that players that try to do things by themselves will only land in a tight spot that they may not be prepared to face on their own. Always have at least one teammate with you. While certain objectives or situations may lead to your team being separated, such as dividing the workload of completing mission tasks across teams of two or a horde battle that forces some players to move away to cover more ground, always stay within a visible line of sight of each other to quickly help the other in whatever situation they may find themselves in. In higher difficulties, a Lurker will be able to incapacitate a survivor in no time flat, making their punishing pounces even more unforgiving. Better safe than sorry.
- Listen carefully. The Lurker gives out a distinct wheezing noise that is easily heard in quiet scenarios. During a fight, it may be more difficult to catch but listen to your character or the other survivors as they will chime in with a response related to hearing or sensing the presence of a Lurker.
- Watch your fire. A Lurker does not have a lot of health. A quick shot to the head will prove effective at eradicating him quickly. Be careful when shooting at a Lurker who is currently on a survivor, however, especially if you are using a fully automatic weapon to do so. Friendly fire is less forgiving as the difficulty levels increase so while you should always act quickly, control your bursts or you may accidentally incapacitate (and even kill) your own teammate in the process of saving them. The same general principle also applies to explosives which can easily do as much, if not more, damage if it lands extremely close to a survivor. Due to this, explosives are ill-advised for saving pinned survivors.
- Watch out for a little notification sign. It is the same one that appears when someone is incapacitated except the white circle will not drain counterclockwise. When it appears, it will lead toward the direction where the pinned survivor is located. The pinned survivor will also be outlined in yellow. Distressed audio cues should also notify others that someone is currently being pinned by a Lurker.
- Always mark your targets. As with all special zombies, marking lets players know where a particular threatening zeke is and/or where it is about to go. The red outline can be seen through obstacles and is hard to miss, so press the key that marks them and make their appearance even less of a surprise. A Lurker that pins a survivor down will automatically mark both himself and his victim in yellow to others. If you are pinned, only the Lurker will be marked yellow.
- Communicate. If you have a microphone, use it. Call out if you know have seen where a Lurker was. If you are pinned, call for assistance. Warn others that a Lurker is resting near where they incapacitated you and that they should watch out before coming to your position.
- Protect NPCs. Non-playable characters such as soldiers or escort characters can be at risk of being pinned down by a Lurker. While this tends to rarely happen, treat them like you would a fellow survivor and eliminate the Lurker off of them as quickly as possible.
- Given that the pounce is practically the Lurker's only form of attack, it is made to be most effective in the most compromising situations. Such examples include:
- Being separated from teammates.
- Being the only person left still standing.
- Going towards an incapacitated teammate to save them, not knowing that they were incapacitated due to a Lurker, and said Lurker is waiting nearby or just out of sight to pounce whoever was blind enough to rush in without checking the area first.
- While you may be preoccupied with several things during an onslaught of zekes, there is almost little that can be done should you be pounced. Be aware of when you are at your most vulnerable and it could be the difference between giving you and your team a fighting chance or being swiftly incapacitated.
- Knowing when and where Lurkers spawn is key to protecting yourself and your team from them. Much like resting zekes, Lurkers do not actually appear on the radar as a threat until they are agitated. Keeping a mental map of possible/frequent Lurker spawning locations will greatly sharpen the senses for knowing where they may come from. Map knowledge and familiarity of the environment is important, so replaying a stage multiple times can help determine some of the more frequent spots that Lurkers are likely to be found hiding in.
- In general, always be wary of walking around any corners. In the heat of the moment, you may not get the chance to focus your hearing to hear the Lurker's distinct sounds so always approach the next hallway with caution or with your weapon pre-aimed. If there is a path with where a Lurker can possibly appear from two different directions, try to quickly peek at one side then the other.
- The same also applies to obstacles such as cars, large boxes, furniture, or anything else that looks like it could be used to cover a crouching Lurker's body.
- Sometimes a Lurker can appear in areas your team has already pass through, so backtracking can also become a risk. Never let your guard down just because you already cleared a previous area.
- In certain chapters, there are certain areas where a Lurker can appear near your team from above. Even if you can hear him, you will likely be unable to spot him anywhere. Keep listening and watch out for when he finally decides to come out of hiding. He will come down from his elevated position and onto ground level, ready to pounce on anyone unwary or unobservant enough to notice.
- When the Lurker is forced to confront the survivors head-on due to his cover being blown, being agitated by a careful but closeby survivor, or being attacked, his pounce ability becomes more pronounced. Lurkers can leap extremely far. Possessing unusual levels of athleticism, the Lurker can make some astonishingly huge pounces in both distance and height. This can usually only be seen while he is actively chasing down a survivor where there is more room for larger leaps. Just because you created a decent amount of space in between one another does not mean you are safe from being pounced.
- When forced into attacking, the Lurker makes loud noises that give away his position even further. A Lurker that crouches low on all fours is his signal that he is about to pounce on someone. A Lurker's pounce can happen very quickly so even if you see spot him getting down to the ground, you may not be able to shoot him before he suddenly grabs you. Aim down a bit if you see a Lurker get low to the floor while facing you and his head will be a fairly easy target.
- Another common scenario involving the Lurker taking a less stealthy approach involves swarms. During events where a massive horde of zekes is imminent, the Lurker may spawn nearby from an area that is less monitored and will try to blindside a survivor near him. Alternatively, he will try to blend in with the regular zeke crowd in order to close the distance between a survivor and ambush them.
- A Lurker's pounce has a deceptively wide grab range. This is why it can be extremely difficult to dodge a Lurker as even if you appear to have gotten out of the way, your character will still be grabbed. While it is not impossible to dodge a Lurker's pounce, you will be better off trying to shoot him as he leaps towards you rather than trying to get out of the way and catch his landing.
- However, if a Lurker does happen to miss his target, either due to the environment blocking his pounce path or by a successfully dodge, take advantage of his vulnerable landing state. He will not stay vulnerable for too long as he will soon be ready to pounce again, so act fast to kick him while he is down.
- Meleeing a Lurker is not particularly effective. Immediately engaging a Lurker that you find with a melee strike will probably not take him down in one hit, resulting in the aggressor getting pounced after a single hit more often than not. If you know a Lurker is around, use a gun. While melee is the safest option for getting a Lurker off his victim, it will not push him away from his target. Choosing to melee a Lurker off a teammate will take a few strikes assuming he did not take any or very little damage prior to pouncing on someone. A few bullets or a headshot will usually be quicker unless you are playing a class with a heavy emphasis on melee.
- Survivors that get in the way of a Lurker's intended target may become the new target. While Lurkers aim to pounce on the survivors that agitated him, it is possible for someone unfortunate enough to get in the way between the two to end up as the newly chosen target. Lurkers are not picky about who they pounce on, so they will immediately begin to maul their victim regardless if it was who they intended to attack or not. If you happen to be "saved" from a pounce by your unlucky teammate, react quickly to dispatch the Lurker off of them.
- Staying in an area covered by an Autoturret or standing on a High Voltage Grid can save you from a Lurker. While very uncommon, if you happen to be pounced in the vicinity of a stocked Autoturret or while you are currently standing on a powered High Voltage Grid that was placed on the floor, they can eliminate the offending Lurker off of you. However, each does have its drawbacks: the Autoturret cannot lock on the Lurker if many other zekes are in the way as it will prioritize them instead, while the High Voltage Grid is a very small and specific area to be found standing on.
- Sometimes, a Lurker can be killed by you at the exact same time he manages to pounce on you. Consider yourself fortunate if you manage to pull this off since you will not take damage from the pounce.
- At level 10, the Gunslinger unlocks a core perk called . This perk's utility gives all teammates an advantage on any special zombies that come within range. Against Lurkers, their position will always be exposed should they be hiding around a corner or anywhere just out of sight closeby. However, they may not be immediately marked while they are crouched and hiding, but upon being marked, the Lurker will be triggered out of hiding.
- At level 11, the Gunslinger can unlock a perk called . This perk's utility expands across every special zombie in the game. Against Lurker, in particular, it could help shoot him off his target slightly quicker.
- At Level 20, the Gunslinger unlocks a core perk called . This perk alleviates half the damage done to teammates you accidentally shoot, making friendly fire less punishing. While you should never shoot at a teammate, accidents happen, especially when it comes to saving a pinned survivor from a Lurker. As a Gunslinger, you do not possess any equipment best suited for helping a pinned survivor, meaning your best options in most cases for helping them are your primary or secondary. Having the perk unlocked definitely helps to lessen the impact such accidents can have, especially in higher difficulties. But as always, and no matter the situation, watch your fire.
- At level 11, the Hellraiser can also unlock the perk called . Similarly to the Gunslinger, the Hellraiser is usually limited to his primary or secondary when it comes to fighting off Lurkers or saving a survivor pinned by one, so using this perk can allow you to kill him slightly quicker.
- At level 11, the Medic can unlock a perk called . This perk gives you a chance to get up if you find yourself incapacitated or pinned while everyone else is also in the same predicament. While it could save you in a pinch, know that it will only work a quarter of the time and that if you find yourself pinned/incapacitated again in the next sixty seconds, you will not be able to benefit from this perk. Additionally, the fact that only you can get up in a scenario where everyone else is in no fighting condition can make this perk seem as though it is only meant to delay the inevitable.
- At level 20, the Medic unlocks a core perk called Stim Pistol. It is extremely safe to use, and the survivor you shoot at will receive a much-needed temporary health boost. Not only that, but it also works on anyone who has been incapacitated as well. . This perk allows you to easily save anyone who is pinned down by a Lurker using the
- The Fixer starts with a core perk called Supply Bag. While this powerful equipment should generally be saved for swarms or other threats, a Lurker can be easily killed if you happen to come across one while carrying some explosive ammunition. . This perk starts you off with the
- At level 4, the Fixer can unlock a perk called Masking Gas Grenade. Using a Masking Gas Grenade allows survivors that walk into the gas to become invisible to the zekes, including hiding Lurkers. Masking Gas Grenades can also be thrown at a pinned teammate to easily save their life since the Lurker will let go of their target and be unable to retarget them until the gas effect wears off. This will give them the opportunity to kill the Lurker and any other zekes nearby. Additionally, the gas will also grant a small amount of temporary health for when the gas eventually wears off. . This perk replaces your Supply Bag in exchange for the
- At level 5, the Fixer can unlock a perk called . Similar to the Night Owl perk, you gain the Masking Gas Grenade that you can use to save a pinned survivor from Lurkers. However, instead of granting some temporary health, the gas now does damage and can kill anything within its area of effect, including the Lurker should the pinned survivor choose to focus on escaping.
- At level 10, the Fixer can unlock a core perk called . Similar to the Medic's Second Wind perk, the Fixer will soon get up if everyone else is incapacitated or pinned as well. However, it is not tied to chance. Thus, apart from the usual 60-second cooldown in between uses, it will guarantee that the Fixer will get back up, even while pinned by a Lurker. However, you will still be placed in a less-than-ideal situation where everyone else is either down, pinned, or dead. So just as before, understand you are being placed in a scenario where the odds are against you.
- The Slasher starts with a core perk called Stun Gun. Typically used for crowd control, it also has the ability to free a pinned survivor from the Lurker's grasp and leave him extremely vulnerable to retaliation by either you or your recently saved teammate. . This perk starts you off with the
- At level 11, the Slasher can unlock a perk called . This perk behaves exactly the same as the Bounty Hunter perk.
- At level 19, the Slasher can unlock a perk called . This perk allows you to free yourself from a Lurker if you have been pinned for five seconds. However, this benefit will see very little mileage in higher difficulties due to the increased damage from all enemies so only use it as a crutch for lower difficulties.
- The Exterminator starts with a core perk called . This perk makes you deal 25% more damage to all enemies during swarm events, Lurkers included.
- At level 17, the Exterminator can also unlock the perk called . Although the perk functions the exact same as the Medic's version, it has a cooldown of 120 seconds, twice as long as theirs. Just like the Gunslinger and Hellraiser, you will largely be relying only on your primary or secondary to deal with Lurkers.
- At level 29, the Exterminator can also unlock the perk called . This perk will periodically give you a few seconds of masking effect while everyone else on your team is either incapacitated or dead. The masking effect provides you with a temporary safeguard if you happen to spot or pass by a Lurker. However, since the perk functions in intervals, you may find yourself vulnerable before or just after masking has set in. And should you find yourself incapacitated or pinned down, most ironically so if done by a Lurker, it will not activate.
- The Dronemaster starts with a core perk called Quadrocopter armed with a Stun Gun. In case you get pinned by a Lurker while the Quadrocopter is out, it will stun him off for a slighter higher charge cost than normal. . This perk starts you off with a
- At level 23, the Dronemaster can unlock a perk called . This perk functions similarly to the Gunslinger's Seek and Destroy core perk but with slightly less range and only when the Quadrocopter is out.
|Icon & Name||Description||Gamerscore||Trophy (PS)|
|Kill Lurker midair||35||Silver|
- All of the survivors from New York and Moscow do not call the Lurker by his official nickname to any capacity. They use other nicknames for him instead, Creeper and its variations being the most common. It is unclear as to why the Lurker has the most inconsistent nickname out of all the special zombies.
- The Lurker will hardly ever try to attack with a swipe since it only ever tries to pounce on survivors. However, the Lurker will very rarely attack with a swipe attack if you are standing close to him after being freed.
- Although the Lurker is fairly sensitive to survivors approaching near him, he is unperturbed by passing gunfire or bullets that hit surfaces near him while he is hiding. He will not even react to explosions unless they actually hit him (which may also probably end up killing him as well). Generally, noises will not cause him to react the same way crossing his path, or even simply being close enough to his hiding spot, will. This could be chalked up to gameplay as Lurkers are meant to stay still in one place until something human passes by them or is alarmed by their presence.
- When the survivors are facing the Lurker from a direction different from where he is facing, he will motionlessly turn to face in their direction.
- The Lurker wears brand name clothing and apparel as both his fitness armband and sneakers are made by a company called "Bridge." His track pants and boxers are also from a brand name called "Saber Interactive," although, only the company logo is visible on the boxer's waistband. In the case of the pants and undergarments worn by the Lurker, the brand displayed on the articles of clothing is a company self-insert of the developers behind the World War Z game.
|Zeke • Lurker • Gasbag • Bull • Screamer • Infector • Bomber|