Plague Inc. Non Starter Achievement Guide & Walkthrough

The Non Starter achievement is one of the many achievements that can only be unlocked by playing in the Necroa Virus plague. In order to unlock this achievement, we'll have to prevent a private military contractor, called DarkWater, from successfully analyzing our plague. Events that lead to the unlocking of this achievement are triggered by starting in the USA and evolving an ability and a symptom within 60 days.

It is recommended to attempt unlocking this achievement in casual difficulty because infection would be faster and Z-COM won't get too strong early in the game. There are also some other things you need to keep an eye on, but I'll discuss those as we go through the guide.

First off, the recommended gene setup:

  • Cytochrome Surge
  • Aerocyte
  • Spliced Activation
  • Based Oxidasation
  • Hydrophile

1.) Start in the USA. The achievement can only be unlocked by starting in this country.

2.) Evolve Saliva 1 and Drug Resistance as soon as possible, they should cost 6 and 9 DNA, respectively. You have to evolve both of these within 60 days to successfully trigger the pop-up.

3.) A pop-up will appear soon after evolving the symptom and ability above:
DarkWater 'concerned' for missing geneticists

4.) After successfully triggering the pop-up above, keep an eye on the news banner. These two news banner have to appear before we can continue. (There are times when these news banners will fail to appear on the world screen, so be sure to manually check the news as well).
First banner: DarkWater denies containment breach in weapons facility
Second banner: DarkWater weapons facility shut down over security fears

 5.) After both news banners appear, continue by evolving the following:

  • Insomnia
  • Fever
  • Photophobia
  • Delirium
  • Cytopathic Reanimation (There are instances where you'll have to wait a while to evolve this symptom because of the lack of DNA. Don't worry about that, just wait until you have enough DNA to evolve this)

6.) Again, wait for a pop-up to appear:
DarkWater created [plague name]

7.) Immediately after seeing the pop-up above, evolve Segmented Genome. After some time the last pop-up, which also signifies the successful unlocking of the achievement, appears.
DarkWater fails to analyse [plague name]
The pop-up above is the final pop-up you need to see, the achievement is automatically unlocked after seeing it. You can either quit the game now or finish it, either way the achievement should already be unlocked at your achievement page.

If you're having a hard time getting the pop-ups to appear. Here are some more tips.
  • After activating zombie mode(Cytopathic Reanimation), make sure that the zombie population of the USA does not exceed 5 million. Evolving Horde Instinct and using zombie hordes should be enough to lessen the zombie numbers if this happens.
  • If a pop-up saying something like "Authorities can't protect from USA", restart the game. This pop-up basically says that you failed.
I hope this guide has helped you, Thanks for reading and HSG!


  1. That's a lotta Z-Com bases on the second scrnshot.

    1. Yeah, lol. I took the screenshots while playing on mega-brutal. Z-COM spread so fast I thought I was going to fail

  2. Yayyy achievement! ^u^

  3. Thanks! Works great on Android and iOS.