The Last of Us Part 2: How to Deal With Every Type of Enemy

The Last of Us Part II has a number of enemies for players to confront that range from more common adversaries to special ones you’ll only see a couple of times. Connecting all these enemies no matter what form they take is a certain degree of lethality that’ll dismantle players’ strategies and lead to a quick game over screen if players aren’t careful, particularly when they’re playing on higher difficulties. You’ll need plenty of resources to take on these sorts of enemies, but you’ll also need different strategies depending on what you’re fighting to handle the situation in the best way possible.

Fortunately for players, many of the enemies you’ll find in The Last of Us Part II are ones you found in the first game. Gameplay mechanics such as dodging attacks, going prone, and climbing under and over obstacles may have changed the way you approach encounters, but the core experience remains the same.

Be sure to check out our guide for general tips on combat and survival first, and after you’ve taken those tips into consideration, continue below for advice on handling all the different types of enemies you’ll find in The Last of Us Part II.

Spoiler Warning: Details on dealing with enemies may contain story spoilers.

Common Humans

These enemies are some of the most typical ones you’ll encounter and are generally connected to the WLF or Seraphite factions. They use a variety of weapons including guns, melee instruments, and bows as well as a rare throwable to throw players off their game. These are best dispatched with stealth first before you go guns blazing since they’ll almost always have the numbers advantage, but taking them out is pretty straightforward. Just don’t run right at someone who’s aiming at you and you should be alright.

“Elite” Humans

These human enemies are a bit different from their more fragile teammates. You’ll see both male and female versions of these enemies, but you can always recognize them by their larger size and their similarly larger melee weapons. Going toe-to-toe with them in a melee scuffle is ill-advised, and even a well-placed headshot doesn’t always take them down the first time. They have to get in close to do any damage though, so hit them hard while they’re advancing towards you by using weapons with more stopping power like shotguns.

Dogs

Dealing with dogs is a tough in The Last of Us Part II. Having to stab or shoot a dog that’s coming after you isn’t something to look forward to, but this enemy is particularly aggressive in the game and has to be taken out effectively. The most morbid (and effective) way to take care of them is to kill their owner first. The dog will return to the owner’s body and hover over it to give players a clear shot. If they end up catching your scent before you get that chance, toss a bottle or brick to throw them off.

Runners

Moving onto the infected enemies, the Runners are the common fodder type you’ll see all over the place. Sometimes they’re “patrolling” areas while other times they’re just standing still. They’re not much of a threat unless you have multiple coming at you at once, and they’re particularly aggravating when you’ve got bigger foes to deal with. There’s not much to say about these enemies other than that a headshot will make short work of them as will a stealth takedown if you prefer to start quietly.

The Last of Us Part 2 Enemies
(Photo: Sony)

Clickers

One of the most formidable enemy types from The Last of Us is back in the sequel: The Clickers. These enemies are blind as can be but can figure out where you are through their echolocation ability. They’ll kill you in one hit if they get too close, so try and stealthily take them out or hit them in the head with something that packs a punch. They’re fortunately not too fast, so if they’re approaching you and you need some room to breath, hit them with a bottle to disrupt their advance which will allow for a quick counterattack. Ellie can’t use shivs, so don’t expect that to save you here.

Stalkers

Clickers are scary because of their one-hit potential, but Stalkers are the enemy type that turn The Last of Us Part II into a horror game under the right circumstances. These enemies are quick on their feet, you can’t always detect them in your listening mode, and even worse, they can stick to walls to blend in with the environment and catch you by surprise. Don’t count on a stealth takedown against these enemies. Instead, lay down a mine or two if you know you’re going into a Stalker nest to cover your sides, and keep a bottle in-hand to quickly throw at them in case of a surprise.

Bloaters

The hulking mass of infected repulsion known as a Bloater is a rare enemy, but it’s also one that’ll use up many resources if you want to take it down. They’re fond of running through obstacles to get to the player, so don’t expect a bookcase or something similar to save you. Set them on fire if possible to do damage and briefly stun them then unload with rifles and shotguns. Melee attacking these enemies is perhaps one of the worst decisions you can make, so just keep your distance and keep wearing them down until they’re gone. Fights against Bloaters are battles of patience and attrition and aren’t the time to preserve your resources, so if you’ve got it, use it.

Shamblers

New to The Last of Us Part II is an enemy type known as a Shambler. Like a Boomer from Left 4 Dead or something similar, these enemies love to get close to players and expel spores that burn and disorient. They deny players from getting into certain areas, but they’re fortunately quite slow. They’re particularly bothersome when you’re fighting other enemies since they limit where you can go, so try to take them out first before the fight really gets going. Use mines and lure them into the line of fire to take them out before they get close to you, but don’t forget that they release one last explosion of spores once they’re defeated.

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There’s one more enemy type players will only encounter once in The Last of Us Part II, but it’s best experienced when you get to it. Just treat it like you would a Bloater and go all-out to take it down. You’ll know it when you see it.

The Last of Us Part II is now available for the PlayStation 4.