World War Z Weapon Upgrades: How to unlock and apply weapon upgrades

Unlocking and applying World War Z weapon upgrades can be the difference between life or death at the fleshy hands of the game's immense zombie hordes. As they attempt to rip you and your friends to shreds you'll want the best available equipment for your character, so you can thin the herd, complete objectives and make it out alive.

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In this guide we're going to show you how to get the currency necessary to upgrade your weapons in World War Z and then show you how to make your weapons handle better and deal more damage via the in-game weapon customisation and upgrade system.

How to unlock weapon upgrades in World War Z

world war z unlock

Unlocking weapon upgrades in World War Z is a fairly natural task. Each weapon has an in-game XP bar that scales as you use it, from levels 1-5. When you breach a new tier you unlock new weapon customisation that increase the efficiency of your weapon by a number of factors, including power, accuracy and max penetration.

To unlock new weapon upgrades you simply have to focus on using the weapon you want to upgrade. As you kill more zombies you will earn more weapon xp, and in turn open up new tiers the more you play. 

There are two ways to go about this, you either have to play the class that holds the weapon you want to upgrade from the start, or find said weapon in the world and hold onto it, consistently using it throughout missions. For the more rare Tier III weapons like the Assault Carbine, you may have to scavenge in open areas to find it. 

Some weapons can also be unlocked as part of your starting loadout. Make sure to check the abilities in your class specialisation tree and gun for the skill that gives you the weapon you want to upgrade.

Some weapons like the Advanced SMG also have variant trees for weapon upgrades that you can choose between when you breach a tier. Make note of how each upgrade effects your weapon of choice, and make sure you're focusing on the aspect of the weapon you personally want to improve.

How to apply weapon upgrades in World War Z

world war z weapon apply

Now you've unlocked your weapon upgrades in World War Z, you're going to want to apply them to your favourite zombie-slaying guns. First off, you're going to want supplies, World War Z's in-game currency that is unlocked by completing missions and surviving zombie encounters.

You usually receive around 100-200 supplies per mission, and one way to increase your haul is by upping the base difficulty of the game. Now, mind you, World War Z is a fairly hard game, especially if you don't have a co-ordinated team but if you're looking to get enough supplies to upgrade a lot of different weapons, this is the way forward. 

The first tier of upgrades are all 150 supplies, so you shouldn't have too much trouble getting started on the tiers when you're in the early stages of your time with World War Z. When you've got the supplies, you want to head into the co-op campaign menu and navigate to the 'customise' menu. 

Then click 'weapon customisation' and find the weapon you've earned enough XP for. Click the next tier and spend your currency to unlock the next upgrade and improve your weaponry.

That's pretty much it for how to unlock and use weapon upgrades in World War Z. Follow our tips and keep on playing and you should have a zombie-slaying arsenal in no time.

Best weapons in World War Z

world war z crossbow

Picking out a weapon to use in World War Z can be difficult, especially when you consider that there are a whopping 26 to choose from with varying functions.

Here's five we think you should focus on upgrading to get the most out of your hard-earned supplies.

  • Pistol - You're always going to need your starting pistol, especially in your early hours with the game. It's silenced so you can dispatch of zombies without making any noise and alerting hordes. Later upgrades offer a flashlight and red dot attachments.
  • Compact Shotgun - This is an absolute damage demon, especially when paired with a class like the Exterminator that has buffs when swarmed. It makes short work of hordes, especially when the barrel gets upgraded.
  • Crossbow - Always pick this up when you see it, as it fires out explosive bolts that control crowds with ease. It's a godsend when you're trying to defend an objective, and only gets better with upgrades.
  • Scout Rifle - The sniper rifle in World War Z is too slow to use effectively against massive hordes, but the Scout Rifle offers a nice middle ground for players who want to conduct crowd control from afar. Upgrade it away from its humble wooden beginnings.
  • Assault Carbine - This should be your bread and butter rifle in World War Z. Solid stats across the board, incredible damage, and the upgrades eventually mitigate issues with handling.
Freelance writer

Jordan Oloman has hundreds of bylines across outlets like GamesRadar+, PC Gamer, USA Today, The Guardian, The Verge, The Washington Post, and more. Jordan is an experienced freelance writer who can not only dive deep into the biggest video games out there but explore the way they intersect with culture too. Jordan can also be found working behind-the-scenes here at Future Plc, contributing to the organization and execution of the Future Games Show.