World War Z Wiki
World War Z Wiki
Vanguard thumbnail

Vanguards wield a devastating electric shield that can punch a hole right through the zombie horde

"A shield wielding powerhouse that excels in both offense and defense" ― Vanguard class description

The Vanguard is one of eight playable classes for Co-op Campaign in World War Z. This class was added with the release of World War Z: Aftermath.


The Vanguard is a class suited for support by being both the team's shield and battering ram.

Almost all the perks the Vanguard can choose from revolves around their electric shield and improving its effectiveness in combat while others focus on passive team support. The combination of perks the Vanguard can choose from puts the class in a unique position where they can fulfill either an offensive, defensive, or supportive role depending on their actions in any given situation. In this regard, the Vanguard can be considered more of a generalist when all other classes tend to specialize in one particular role with some limited leeway. Choosing the Vanguard grants you freedom in how you choose to play the class while also being flexible enough to allow a change in playstyle when necessary. It's important to actively incorporate your equipment into your playstle as it will be necessary to play the class more effectively.

The Vanguard's starting core perk grants a passive buff where friendly fire is entirely negated while equipment is out. While other classes can't achieve a similar level of protection without choosing specific perks, the Vanguard always has access to this protection when necessary.

The equipment of choice for the Vanguard is the Mobile Shield. This protective tool has two uses for fighting zekes: deadly defense with the shield block or rushing offense with the shield charge. Blocking can protect its wielder from almost all manners of attack and deliver a lethal shock to anyone that tries to strike back while charging can allow them to plow through a mob and get to the other side quickly. Knowing when it is necessary to take out the shield and which option is appropriate for the situation will keep the wielder and potentially their allies moving and alive. The Mobile Shield has the additional benefit of being able to be used for blocking even when equipment charge is fully expended, though it will only protect against a single hit.

Perks List[]

Regular & Core Perks[]

Level Perk Description XP Required Unlock Cost



Start with Mobile Shield and M500 Shotgun. Take 100% less friendly fire damage while using Shield Charge or Blocking 0 XP 0 Credit icon
Segment One
Quick hands

Quick Hands

Blocking zombie hit or performing Shield Charge reloads your primary and secondary weapons 0 XP 0 Credit icon

Adrenaline Rush

Blocking zombie hit or performing Shield Charge fully restores melee stamina 1250 XP 150 Credit icon
Fancy footwork

Fancy Footwork

Better maneuverability when using Shield Charge and you can move 30% faster while blocking 1250 XP 150 Credit icon

Perk icon


Hitting an enemy while using the Shield Charge will grant you 75% temporary health 150 Credit icon
Segment Two
Passive aggression

Passive Aggression

Shield Block can withstand incoming hits for 3 more seconds (base: 5 seconds) 1250 XP 150 Credit icon
All-round defense

All-Round Defense

For the first 3 seconds Shield Block protects you from all directions 1250 XP 150 Credit icon
Residual defense

Residual Defense

Take 50% less damage from zombies for 3 seconds after Shield Block ends 1250 XP 150 Credit icon

Perk icon


All teammates take 25% less damage if you hold the Shield Block within 5 meters of them 150 Credit icon
Segment Three
Extra equipment


You can perform 2 more Shield Charges per full shield energy (base: 2 charges) 1250 XP 150 Credit icon


You won't be able to collect equipment bags, but your Shield energy will constantly recharge (140 seconds to replenish to maximum) 1250 XP 150 Credit icon
Pickpocket (Vanguard)


Killing 15 zombies in rapid succession refills one equipment charge (cooldown 30 seconds) 1250 XP 150 Credit icon

Perk icon

Tax collector

You refill 1 equipment charge for each special zombie hit during a shield charge (cooldown: 30 seconds) 150 Credit icon
Armor plated

Armor Plated

You gain passive shield protection for 3 seconds when you start interacting with something (cooldown 10 sec) 1500 XP 0 Credit icon
Segment Four
Stronger together

Stronger Together

Health for you and all teammates increased by 7.5% 1500 XP 250 Credit icon
Outer protection

Outer Shell

When your health is below 30% incoming damage depletes Shield energy before health. Full Shield energy prevents damage up to 50% of health 1500 XP 250 Credit icon


Health increased by 35% but sprint stamina decreased by 50% 1500 XP 250 Credit icon

Perk icon

Guard dog

Start with an improved Forest Warrior Chainsaw that deals 50% more damage and has 50% more fuel. All Forest Warrior Chainsaw pickups for you are also improved 250 Credit icon
Segment Five
Rolling refill

Rolling Refill

Passing near an Ammo Crate during a Shield Charge automatically refills your ammo 1500 XP 250 Credit icon


Restore 2% of primary weapon ammo for each enemy killed with a Shield Charge 1750 XP 350 Credit icon
Supply train

Supply Train

Passing near a teammate during a Shield Charge reloads their primary weapon. You receive 5% ammo for your primary weapon for each teammate reloaded 1750 XP 350 Credit icon

Perk icon

Special coating

Passing near a teammate during a Shield Charge grants a 75% temporary health boost to them 350 Credit icon
Segment Six
Freight train

Freight Train

You can kill 40% more zombies with a shield charge (base: 14 zombies) 1750 XP 350 Credit icon
Shake it off

Shake It Off

Performing a Shield Charge removes all negative effects received from special zombies 1750 XP 350 Credit icon
Long run

Long Run

Your Shield Charge speed and covered distance increased by 20% 1750 XP 350 Credit icon

Perk icon

Bad odor II

There is a chance that killing a special zombie will cause it to drop a primary weapon (cooldown: 180 seconds) 350 Credit icon
On your feet

On Your Feet

A single incapacitated teammate within 2 meters of where you finish a Shield Charge will get back up on their feet 2000 XP 0 Credit icon
Segment Seven
Protector revival

Elbow Room

When you, or a teammate within 2 meters of you, starts reviving an incapacitated character, surrounding enemies will be pushed back (cooldown 60 seconds) 2000 XP 500 Credit icon
Placebo effect

Placebo Effect

Heal 10% of max health when someone uses a medkit within 2 meters of you and you're not the target of healing 2000 XP 500 Credit icon


Killing 15 zombies in rapid succession while you are the only member of your team still standing respawns a randomly selected dead teammate (cooldown 60 seconds) 2000 XP 500 Credit icon

Perk icon

Risen from the ashes

When you become the last member of your team standing, you gain temporary health (cooldown: 60 seconds) 500 Credit icon
Segment Eight


When your Shield Block is completely expended, you gain a temporary health boost (cooldown 60 sec) 2000 XP 500 Credit icon
Protector revival

Hurry Back

Respawn time for the whole team decreased by 15% 2500 XP 500 Credit icon
Centre of attention

Centre of Attention

Activating Shield Block will force all zombies within 3 meters in front of you to target you instead of your teammates 2500 XP 500 Credit icon

Perk icon

Reinforced metal

The Shield Block reduces all damage by 5% 500 Credit icon
Segment Nine
Trail blazer

Trail Blazer

Finishing a Shield Charge sets enemies in front of you on fire (distance 2 meters) 2500 XP 500 Credit icon
You made me mad

You Made me Mad

Melee attacks and firearms deal 50% more damage for 5 seconds after you holster the Shield 2500 XP 500 Credit icon


Firearm damage increased by 20% for each dead or incapacitated teammate 2500 XP 500 Credit icon

Perk icon


You take 5% less damage for each killed or incapacitated teammate 500 Credit icon
Breathing room

Breathing Room

Automatically push back nearby zombies when you are hit and about to be incapacitated (cooldown 60 seconds) 3500 XP 0 Credit icon

Prestige Rank perks[]

Rank Level Perk Description Unlock Cost
Peripheral vision

Peripheral Vision

Increase angle at which attacks will be blocked by your Shield by 10% (base: 220 deg) 7500 Credit icon


All zombie damage is reduced by 25% when using Shield Block 7500 Credit icon
Secret stash

Secret Stash

Carried ammo capacity for secondary weapons increased by 15% 7500 Credit icon


Shield Charge allows you to run for an additional 1 seconds (base: 5 seconds) 7500 Credit icon

Secret Stash II

Carried ammo capacity for primary weapons is increased by 5% 7500 Credit icon

Don't bother him!

Take 15% less damage while using a Mortar or a Stationary Machine Gun 7500 Credit icon

Strong Genes

After getting infected, you can withstand for 2 more seconds before turning 7500 Credit icon


Killing 15 zombies during a Shield Charge restores 5% rounds to the primary weapon's magazine 7500 Credit icon


March 28, 2024 patch (the "Thrill of the Kill" update):

  • 4 new prestige perks were added. Each of them was appended to one of the 4 existing columns of perks with a red background. They are unlocked at prestige levels 6–9.
  • The new perks were: "Secret Stash II", "Don't bother him!", "Strong Genes", and "Harvester".


Classes (Co-op Campaign)
Gunslinger Class Icon GunslingerHellraiser and Demolisher Class Icons HellraiserMedic Class Icon MedicFixer and Support Class Icons Fixer

Slasher and Assassin Class Icons SlasherExterminator Class Icon ExterminatorDronemaster Class Icon DronemasterVanguard Class Icon Vanguard

Classes (Multiplayer)
Survivor Class Icon SurvivorTrapper Class Icon TrapperSpecialist Class Icon SpecialistWarfighter Class Icon WarfighterPhantom Class Icon Phantom

Hellraiser and Demolisher Class Icons DemolisherStriker Class Icon StrikerFixer and Support Class Icons SupportSlasher and Assassin Class Icons AssassinShadow Class Icon Shadow