Project Zomboid: what to do if you get bitten

Project Zomboid - A player on a city sidewalk being bitten by two zombies.
(Image credit: The Indie Stone)

If you're trying to figure out what to do after you get bitten in Project Zomboid we have some bad news, and then some more. Scrapes with zombies have a chance to slap you with the terminal Knox Infection, but it can take days to figure out whether you've been infected or not. You might also spot those nauseous and queasy moodles and wonder if you should expect the worst.

Project Zomboid doesn't always spell out the situation for you, so we'll help you figure out whether you simply ate something you shouldn't or if you're about to turn permanently green. Here are the details on what it means when you're feeling queasy and what to do if you've definitely been bitten in Project Zomboid.

What does it mean if you're nauseous or queasy in Project Zomboid? 

If your character has the moodle for being either nauseous or queasy, there's a chance they've been infected with the lethal Knox Infection. Check your health panel by clicking the heart icon in your left side panel. Any wounds will be listed under the body part affected. If you don't have any wounds, you've likely just eaten raw or spoiled food. Eat a proper meal and get some rest and you'll eventually start to feel better.

If you have a laceration, scratch, or bite, you're probably in trouble. While lacerations and scratches from zombies only have a chance to infect your character, zombie bites have a 100% transmission rate. Queasy is the first moodle in the sickness chain, followed by nauseous, sick, and then fever. Eventually, being well-fed and rested won't be enough to keep you going and you'll continue losing health until you die.

(Image credit: The Indie Stone)

What to do if you get bitten in Project Zomboid 

So now you know the bad news. Zombie bites have a 100% Knox Infection transmission rate, which has a 100% death rate. If you get bitten, you are going to die. The slightly less bad news is that it takes a while for the infection to kill you, so you can choose to spend your character's last days wisely.

After a character gets bitten, I try to use their remaining time to aid the character I'll play next. I might go on a huge supply foraging run so my next character can find a good food stash or send them out to uncover more of the map, which my next character will also benefit from. Here's a couple other things you might want to do if you get bitten:

  • Stash your favorite gear and weapons someplace your next character can find them.
  • Sacrifice yourself by making tons of noise to lure nearby zombies away from your chosen base.
  • Make sure you die someplace remote so your zombified self isn't left guarding their gear from your next survivor.

What if a wound is infected? 

Here's some good news, finally. If you open your health panel and see that a wound is "infected", that refers to a typical infection, not the Knox Infection. Once a wound is infected, it's too late to use alcohol wipes or disinfectant on them. Instead, make sure to stay well-fed and rested. Keep your health panel open so that you can change your bandages as soon as they get dirty. You can replenish your stash by ripping spare clothes or by washing your dirty rags in a water source. Stay on top of that infection and you'll eventually recover, unlike those nasty bite wounds. 

Lauren Morton
Associate Editor

Lauren started writing for PC Gamer as a freelancer in 2017 while chasing the Dark Souls fashion police and accepted her role as Associate Editor in 2021, now serving as the self-appointed chief cozy games enjoyer. She originally started her career in game development and is still fascinated by how games tick in the modding and speedrunning scenes. She likes long books, longer RPGs, has strong feelings about farmlife sims, and can't stop playing co-op crafting games.