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Dead Island Wiki
For the variant in Escape Dead Island, see Butcher (Escape).
For the variant in Dead Island 2, see Butcher (Dead Island 2).

The Butcher is a fast type of special infected found in Dead Island, Dead Island: Riptide, and Dead Island: Epidemic. The Butcher is first seen when searching for Afran and is only encountered in the Jungle and Laboratory in Act III. In Dead Island: Riptide, Butchers are located in the Flooded jungle, Dead Zones, Halai Village, and siege defense missions. They are more uncommon and sometimes rare in Riptide unlike the last game, They are first met in Chapter 3 'Twisted Mind' with Thugs, Floaters and the Ogre, a taller frenzied version of the Butcher encountered after The Captain boss in Prologue.



Butchers are essentially a faster, stronger version of the Infected. They have the speed, sight and rapid attacks of the Infected, as well as their signature roar warning signal. They slash with their exposed forearm bones, making them an effective killing machine. Attacking them from a distance with guns is an effective way of killing them. Butchers have longer reach than their models indicate and can successfully attack from a range that would normally require them to be wielding a long weapon to reach. They can appear in groups of Infected or Walkers, but rarely since Butchers seem to work alone most of the time.


Butchers appear to be heavily damaged Infected. Their forearms have been completely destroyed, leaving only bloody stumps with sharpened bones in their place. Whether the bones razor-sharp points are the result of violent fractures or if the Butchers purposely sharpened them is unknown. Their faces are also heavily damaged, revealing the base of a skull visibly, but still managing to possess enough muscle to move their jaws. Their eyes are pale and appear to not be functional, although they still manage to possess incredible accuracy and finesse in combat. Butchers appear to be wearing overalls and feature long grey hair and huge bald spots.


Crouched Butcher

Butchers act, at least on the surface, the same as Infected. Upon spotting their prey, they will emit a uncanny scream/roar before sprinting at the survivor. They are very fast at near human pace, meaning it is likely impossible for you to outrun them no matter what you try. Upon reaching their victim, they will start to hack and slash at the survivor violently with their sharp exposed bones on their arms. The most unique thing about butchers is the ability to regenerate health if left alone for long or being badly damaged. It is unknown how this Special Infected developed this ability, but this is most likely due special mutations thanks to the virus, making them a huge danger to those not immune. Even if not immune they can still do insane damage, capable of leaving their victim in a very horrifying state no other zombie can do. They also appear to have retained some of their living dexterity, as they are able to dodge melee swings that are thrown at them, making them even more potent in close range combat. Butchers are quite a silent type at times unlike most zombies encountered, meaning it can be difficult for players sometimes to tell if it is charging at them, giving you an unexpected jumpscare. Despite their damaged state they manage to successfully climb objects like an Infected despite having not really having support to do so.


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Fire Butcher[]

Fire Butchers are Butchers that only appear in the Bloodbath Arena it will only appear in Arena D. Like all fire enemies it will do extra damage while slowly dying.


Frenzied Butchers are boss Butchers in Dead Island: Riptide. Like most frenzied thug enemies, they're taller, stronger, and more dangerous than a regular one. The notable is Joe 'Ogre' Somare from Riptide.

Notable Butchers[]


  • They follow the same behaviour as an Infected. Using its predictability to prepare for attack.
  • Butchers are extremely fast and attack quickly. Using a slow melee weapon or slow-firing firearm will leave you open to a dangerous counterattacks.
  • Firearms—especially those equipped with the Pride Modification—are quite effective against the Butcher, and can cause enough damage to kill them in a single shot. A point-blank shot from an upgraded and modded shotgun can one-shot-kill Butchers quite easily.
  • When a Butcher is running towards you, kicking it will give you roughly two seconds of opening to attack without it retaliating. If you attack in those two seconds and aim at the shoulder, you can kill it almost instantly . Jump-kicking does not work on Butchers, but they can still be knocked down by vehicles and weapon effects. You can stomp or attack them while they’re trying to get back up, but they can recover from knockdowns quite quickly.
  • Butchers are quite fast and can follow a vehicle for some distance, so be careful when exiting a vehicle after being chased by one; if you are aware one is chasing you, reverse and run them down. Butchers have little ability to retaliate against a vehicle impacting them at high speed.
  • Butchers typically charge their target in a straight line, and behave like a typical Infected, including giving out high pitched roars and screams, albeit with a distinct tone to differentiate them. This can be useful for locating them.
  • A well placed Grenade or Deo-Bomb can instantaneously kill a Butcher, or at the very least knock it down.
  • When you are first spotted by a Butcher, or strike one with any weapon, it enters a state of "rage". Don't hit the Butcher again or it will quickly charge at you. It's best to leave the Butcher alone and strike it again when it stops screaming. It will likely enter the Rage state once more; repeating this process until the Butcher is dead is relatively effective.
  • The Butcher will dodge attacks aimed at its head, but if you aim at the neck with a sharp-edged weapon and hit, you can kill it in one stroke.
  • Though they can dodge most melee attacks, Butchers are largely incapable of dodging thrown melee weapons. This can provide a reliable, if somewhat dangerous way to damage the Butcher, and may even stagger them under the right circumstances.
  • The Butcher is capable of a "Stun Attack". This attack can instantly drain your stamina and send you flying backward to the ground.
  • Butchers are vulnerable to all special weapon effects which stun normal zombies, including Fire, Impact, Poison and Shock effects. Inflicting any of these effects on a Butcher will leave it vulnerable to attack.
  • An Impact-related mod, such as the Lightning Mod, on a blunt weapon like a Baton will cause the Butcher to be sent to the ground on a critical hit, leaving him vulnerable to stomps (strangely, its head doesn't explode or spurt blood). it will be instantly killed. But act fast, because he can get up very quickly. Jump-kicking is effective despite the Butcher having no hands. If done correctly it won't be able to get up as fast. This tactic is most useful for Sam B, as his expertise is blunt weapons and he can deal more damage than others while kicking.
  • Bleeding mods also work pretty well: just a few swings from a Kanabo with the Medieval Mod or Baseball Bat with the Shredder Mod can kill the Butcher without any difficulties.
  • If the Butcher is left alone for a while, it will regenerate some, usually all, of its health. This is indicated by the Butcher looking at his right sharpened bone while snarling.
  • Butchers, though susceptible to firearms, still take many shots from automatic and semi-automatic weapons before succumbing to their wounds. If you decide to use this strategy, make sure there's a sufficient distance between you and the Butcher before firing.
  • Fighting with two-handed weapons like a nail plank or staff can interrupt some of their attacks.
  • Butchers get back up very quickly, making head stomps hard to deliver.
  • A Wakizashi can take a Butcher out with no problems.
  • Unfortunately, it impossible, to break the limbs of a Butcher. However, if one manages to do so (through a glitch possibly), the enemy would be effectively neutralized.
  • You can also use the Sam B Fury to easily take out the Butcher.


  • In Dead Island, Butchers are tied with Rams as the most abundant source of high-rarity loot, having a 10% chance of dropping Exceptional and Legendary items. In Dead Island: Riptide however, they are a far inferior source, only capable of dropping Uncommon and Rare loot.
  • The health values for the Butcher given in the official Dead Island Strategy Guide are incorrect; they are actually the health values for the Infected Warrior, not the Butcher. The Butcher actually has the same health values as the Ram.
  • There is the Achievement/Trophy in Dead Island "Ah! Spoiled meat!" that requires the player to kill a Butcher with an axe. It's possible to critically injure the Butcher with another weapon, as long as the axe is used for the killing blow.
    • The name of the Achievement/Trophy is a reference to the original Diablo game, specifically the popular boss monster also called the "Butcher" that fights with a massive cleaver and is known for bellowing "Ah! Fresh meat!" as soon as he sees the player.
  • There is also the challenge "Who butchers the Butchers?" in Dead Island which requires the player to kill five Butchers to get additional XP. There are several levels to this challenge. (The name of this challenge may be a reference to the famous Watchmen quote: "Who watches the Watchmen?")
  • When fighting a Butcher near one of the many cliffs in the Jungle, letting the Butcher go into "Rage" mode and leading it off the edge is an effective and amusing way to deal with them.
  • The Butcher is the only Special Infected that doesn’t appear in Ryder White's Campaign, although it does make a brief appearance in the ending cinematic.
  • The Butcher cutscene can be bypassed by circling around to the right of the cutscene area, although the ammo crates will not be interactive.
  • In Dead Island: Riptide, the Butcher changes in appearance when damage is inflicted upon it. Some examples of physical damages include: losing an eyeball and its ribcage becoming exposed.
  • It is not possible for the Butcher to have its limbs or head cut off, even if you headstomp it.
  • Highly unusual is the fact that it is easier to kill a Butcher with a vehicle that it is to kill an Infected with one. The same applies to the Ram.
  • In Dead Island, the body of a dead Infected and a Floater can be found next to a live Butcher in the Laboratory, leading some to speculate that Butchers are prone to attacking zombies as well as humans and are quite capable of killing both.
  • But despite this the Butcher seems to be neutral with other undead most of the time, This can be seen with Butchers being with other Walkers or any Zombie.
  • The Butchers hair is notably long in Dead Island and Riptide. So if far away enough, it's usual for it's hair to glitch however this will stop if they get too close to the player.


  • Many players find this zombie to be the scariest out of all in the series.
  • The butcher is one of the few zombies that is classed to be fast in the series, others being: Infected, Drowners, Screamers, and Bouncers.
  • There is an unused Drowner Butcher design that was supposed to appear in areas of water, but was scrapped for unknown reasons.


Dead Island[]



  • Many can be found in different areas of the Laboratory.
  • Ope's Cave
  • Three can be found in Tomb of Natives in the Definitive.

Dead Island: Riptide[]

  • Two or three can be found in the Flooded Jungle either in a cave or at a waterfall area where the destroyed Hanging Joe is.
  • Appears in the Horde attacks for Ferry and Paradise Survival Camp.