Plague Inc. Nipah Virus Scenario Mega-Brutal(3 Biohazard) Guide

The Nipah Virus scenario has got to be one of the hardest plagues to finish on mega-brutal difficulty- especially if you're aiming for 3 Biohazards. I have played a hundred or so games and was barely able to complete a strategy that works but on a very low success rate. The guide/strategy I'm about to post isn't a 100% win strategy, you will fail...a lot. That's just how Nipah is.

Before I get on with the strategy, here's a little background on the Nipah Virus scenario.

As the description box for the scenario says, the Nipah Virus mutated strain of Virus that originated from a fruit bat and cross-transmitted to a pig then to a human. The in-game description also says something about Nipah being "a disease worthy of hollywood", this is because the inspiration for this scenario was virus in the movie, Contagion(Check it out, it's a good film). This also explains why an achievement called 'Contagion Cancelled' is available only for this scenario.

The basics

I'll assume you already know the basics on Nipah Virus. If you don't, here are the basic things you should know:

  1. You need to evolve Bat 2 or Swine 1 to unlock symptoms and transmissions unlocked by Cedar Traits.
  2. Hendra traits unlocks Dog and two Horse transmissions, while Cedar Traits unlocks Fomites, and Air & Water transmissions. Upgrading all three to the maximum will unlock Extreme Bioaerosol
  3. Respiratory and Encephalitic Shift unlock 4 symptoms each. The first two of these four symptoms only increase infectivity or severity, sometimes both. One symptom is infectious and lethal, and the last one is very lethal.
  4. The "Gateway" symptoms for the shifts mentioned are: Pulmonary Oedema and Fibrosis(Either one), Tachycardia, Hallucination, and Fever. The first 3 are for Respiratory and the last two are for Encephalitic.
  5. Finally, If you evolved Cedar Trait there is a pop-up event that appears randomly that says "Scientists exploit Cedar Traits". This pop-up will boost the current cure progress by at least 10%(Based on my experience.)

What I think you should know

I played more than a hundred games of Nipah Virus just to come up with a strategy that works. It took me weeks, and a lot of failed attempts, to come up with a strategy that doesn't even have a 50% chance of success. A lot of factors affect mega-brutal games and that's the best I could come up with right now.

While experimenting and failing a lot, I found some things that could potentially help you if you're experimenting with strategies.

  • You need Environmental Hardening. Without this ability, Greenland and Iceland will be super slow to infect even if you have maxed transmissions. Maxed transmissions combined with two Cold Resistances still wouldn't be enough to infect Greenland and Iceland quickly.
  • Without Air 1(maybe even 2), Kazakhstan will take too long to infect.
  • Focusing on animal transmissions and hoping for mutations to carry your game is not a good idea. Tried it, doesn't work. Even with the Darwinist Gene and every animal transmission, you'll be lucky if you get one lethal symptom.
  • Greenland and Iceland are the hardest countries to infect. This doesn't need explaining.
  • Lethal symptoms from one Shift(Respiratory or Encephalitic) are not enough to kill fast unless you evolve them early. Which leads us to..
  • Evolving Shift symptoms without transmissions and resistances will fail. Without Necrosis, the dead won't keep the infection going.
  • Mutations are like your best friends. They can help you out or laugh at your failure. 
  • Evolving Nausea at the beginning will help a lot, especially if a festival of love comes up
  • Being placed on the WHO watch list will make countries close their borders, airports, and harbors sooner. I think it also boosts the cure progression
  • WHO increasing your threat level will do the same but far worse.
  • Awareness days will boost the cure
  • If all three events mentioned above happens, game over.
  • Finally, finishing at 365 days isn't enough. The cure completion has to be below 55%.

Spicy's Strategy

Current Success rate and some comments:

In the last 10 games I've played with this strategy, I've won 3 games. The main reason why I decided to post this guide, even though it had a low success rate, is because it's the only strategy that worked more than once in 10 games without making changes to the evolution order. 

Here are the reasons why I think I lost the seven games:
  • Failure to infect Greenland
  • Placed on Watchlist or Threat Level increase too early
  • Pulmonary Hemorrhage mutated too early
  • Nipah Awareness day boosted the cure
  • 'Scientists explore Cedar Trait' happened as game was about to finish with 50% cure.

Requirements for 3 Biohazards

In my experience, finishing within 365 days will not be enough to give you a 3 biohazard score. The cure progress would also need to be below 55%. To give you an idea of the stats you should have at the end of the game, here are my stats on my latest wins.
The first 3 games were won while I was experimenting with strategies. Those strategies relied too much on random mutations.

Things to remember:

  • Always be ready to change the strategy at any given point, some events may require you to react differently. Do not be afraid to experiment, losing is also part of the game.
  • I can not account for the random events, country infection order, and mutations that happen throughout your game. Each game is different and this strategy might not always work.
  • Don't get too frustrated. If you're failing consecutively, take a break and do something else. 
  • I spent weeks finding a decent enough strategy for this scenario. I had more failed games than wins. That being said, be prepared to lose a lot. Just kidding, keep trying. You might just find your own strategy.

Gene Setup

1.) ATP Boost - Having 8 DNA to work with right at the beginning will help.
2.) Aquacyte - To infect island countries easier.
3.) Darwinist - Genetic Mimic is also an option, but the mutation of infectious symptoms, although random, will help out more than slowing down the cure.
4.) Trans-Stasis - We'll be focusing mostly on transmissions to spread the plague quickly
5.) Hydrophile - Extremophile is always an option here, but I chose this one to fully infect India earlier. I haven't tried this strategy with extremophile yet.

The strategy

1.) Before popping the very first red bubble, evolve the following:
  • Bat 2
  • Swine 1
  • Nausea
2.) Pop the red bubble then continue to evolve the following:
  • Swine 2
  • Bat 3
  • Bat 4
  • Respiratory Shift
3.) Take a look at your mutated symptoms and continue to evolve in either of these ways:
Note: The main point here is to evolve Haemoptysis. Also, if given a choice between Pulmonary Oedema and Pulmonary Fibrosis, always choose Oedema.
  • If Coughing and Sneezing are evolved, evolve Pulmonary Fibrosis then Haemoptysis
  • If not, evolve Vomiting, Pulmonary Oedema then Haemoptysis
4.) Continue to evolve the following:
  • Hendra Traits
  • Cedar Traits
  • Fomites 1
  • Fomites 2
  • Water 1
  • Water 2
  • Drug Resistance 1
  • Drug Resistance 2
  • Pulmonary Haemorrhage In my experience, having this symptom mutate earlier than this point will cause problems.
  • Respiratory Failure
  • Air 1
  • Air 2
  • Cold Resistance 1
  • Cold Resistance 2
  • Heat Resistance 1
  • Heat Resistance 2
  • Environmental Hardening This makes the infection rate on Greenland and Iceland super fast
  • Encaphalitic Shift
5.) At this point in the game, the whole world is already on its way to complete infection. From this point on, you can decide on what you want to evolve.

In my games I prioritize evolving these symptoms, in order:
  • Hallucination If symptoms leading to it are already mutated. If not I evolve the closest one to it.
  • Coma Hallucination and Coma will slow the cure by a great amount. Remember that the cure progress has to be below 55%
  • Seizures Although this symptom has low lethality, it'll still help in making kills much faster
You either have the choice to go full on lethal with your Nipah Virus or slow down the cure. Pulmonary Haemorrhage and Respiratory Failure will still take some time erase humanity, so evolving some lethal symptoms might be helpful, but keep in mind that you need the cure to be below 55%. If you're confident that the cure won't reach 55%, it might be best to go and get Meningitis. The symptoms I listed above are always the ones I evolved in the 3 wins I got.

Again, with this strategy I have won 3 games out of 10. It might not be worth mentioning, but in some of those games I was also busy working or watching TV that I might have missed a few bubbles. That about does it. Hope this guide helped!

Submitted Guides:

Guide by: wab

Spicy's comments: I think I've tried this strategy, I don't know if I was successful on it or not, but it's worth trying it out.

Here is how i beat itAtp boost,aqua,sympto,darwinist,extremophileBat 2,coughing,nausea,vomiting,sneezing,oedema,resp shift,haemoptysis,max bat and swine.Cold,drug 1/2,heat 1/2,env hardening.Hendra traits,horse 1/2.All rest cheap non highly lethal symtoms,except memory loss coma and hallucinations/you need them for later whe cure progress is high/.When all islands are infected /not fully infected/evolve pulmonary haemorrhage and watch kazakhstan cuz they tend to be with slowest inf rate.When half of people are infected go resp failure, menigitis and encephalitis.Memory loss coma and hallucinations/if you are lucky and they havent mutated yet/ plus reshuffles to get cure progress down.Won 2out of five with 345 days and 42% cure progress being my best.Would have better succes rate if i havent evolved the last three lethal symptoms too early.

Credits and closing remarks

I hope these guides have helped you achieve those sweet golden biohazards for Nipah Virus. If you have any tips or strategies you'd like to share, post them at the comments. I'll include the most up-voted ones along with this guide. HSG!


  1. Worked beautifuly in the first try :)) Thank you very much!

    Right Now I am trying to get 3 Biohazard in all the scenarios with every single diease type in the Mega Brutal Dificulty. Beat all of them with the Neurax and trying to do the same with Bacteria but I am finding trouble with Global Warming (dunno even where to Start, infection rate seems to be too slow in every single country), Created Equal, Golden Age, Shut Down Everything and Pirate Plague

    Any Help?

  2. In my opinion Bacteria is one of the hardest plague types to win 3-stars on. I'm also beating every scenario with every plague so it's my plan to eventually have a guide for all scenarios for all plague types.

    I'll likely start with Global Warming, and maybe I'll even go for that Golden Age Bacteria guide you asked for.
    -Mosh2841(aka William Stevens)

  3. All the scenarios you've mentioned are currently on my to-do list. I plan to complete guides for every scenario, just had to finish the hard-ones first.(This by far has been the hardest)

    I'll try to make the guides as soon as I can! and I'm glad this worked for you, and on the first try! lol

  4. I'm going to try to replicate your strategy for the PC version and record a video. Hopefully it doesn't take me too many tries haha.

  5. I also got the Nipah Film Planned Pop-Up that leads to the contagion canceled achievement.

  6. Thanks so much! I got it on first try, that was so much help I can't even begin to tell you. I've been played about 5-10 games a night for the past couple weeks just trying to get this darned scenario on 3 biohazards. Now I can move on with some peace of mind. XD

  7. Also, Nipah Virus is a real world virus. The MEV-1 virus in the movie Contagion was based off of it. Kind of a nuance but I felt like it was worth noting. "Henipavirus is a genus of the family Paramyxoviridae, order Mononegavirales containing three established species: Hendra virus, Nipah virus and Cedar Virus." Thought that was pretty interesting.

  8. Mosh2841 in my opinion it is one of the easiest actually.

  9. FIVE DAYS OFF on first try!!
    Excellent guide.

  10. Wow! After 10 or more tries, finally it worked on IOS! With a bit o luck... although, some symptoms mutated and evolved sooner: Pulmonary Hemorrhage and Respiratory Failure before Drug 2, it helped me to kill everyone faster... I think. Great guide. Thanks!

  11. Wab's strategy worked! Two biohazards, 454 days, 33% cure.

  12. it's not working for me :/

  13. Beat it on the first try. 3 gold biohazards, 51% cure, 357 days, 65,158 score.

  14. Greenland. Damnit Greenland. So close.

  15. I used wab's strategy. Mega-Brutal: 67,618, 347 days, 48%. Have yet to have luck with Spicy's

  16. So frustrating - even evolving water 1&2 I cannot get Greenland to infect at all with either strategy :-(

  17. I played 100 nipah games 10 games 2 biohards 90 games greenland shut down erything

  18. just tried this strategy for the 3rd time, 358 days, 53% cure, score 64551, and only got 2 biohazards, son of a ...

  19. PRE-GAME

    ATP Boost - need a fast start

    Aquacyte - Greenland/Caribbean are hard to infect

    Base Oxidisation - Mutations that promote more mutations!

    Sympto-Stasis - Focus on getting the cheap symptoms and mutating costly

    Xerophile - Kazakhstan is slow



    Before the game starts properly (before closing any pop-ups or bubbles)

    • Bat 2

    • Swine 1

    • Nausea


    Pop the red bubble then continue to evolve the following IN ORDER

    (maximises chances of better mutations and gets the fastest infectious start)

    • Coughing

    • Vomiting

    • Dysphagia

    • Sneezing


    You want a Minor disease detected, not major, so only one lethal symptom allowed. Also, as the disease picks up, you want Cold 1/2 and Drug 1/2 as a main focus so the Nordic countries can infect Greenland, but if high or low lethality is an issue, that must be addressed first. Wait for the first mutation and do the following: NOT IN ORDER

    • Bat 3 (if no random mutation of transmission)

    • Pulmonary Oedema (if no other lethal symptom is out there)

    • Cold Resistance 1/2

    • Drug Resistance 1/2 (I always wait for the plane to the USA for 1)

    4. AFTER MINOR DISEASE IS DETECTED (IMO reset if anything else detected)

    Watch for a sneaky Pulmonary Haemorrhage mutation, but otherwise pump up the cheap infectious/lethal symptoms and work on Environmental Hardening. I like to get Genetic Hardening 1 at 1% cure, but sometimes isn't necessary. Also, I like to slow the game down cause everything happens fast and every moment matters for the exponential infection.

    • Respiratory Shift

    • Haemoptysis

    • Pulmonary Fibrosis

    • Dyspnea

    • Tachychardia

    • Drug 2 and Environmental Hardening if not done already


    The guide is really based on your mutations and infections at this point.

    The most important things I lose the game to are not infecting Greenland (Not enough transmissions mutated) or Lethality that is too high or low. Too low takes too long and too high interrupts infectivity.

    On one hand, you want to kill within a year, but on the other hand you need to infect everyone first. Also, you have very little time before Genetic Shifts start making Abilities and Transmissions expensive, so prioritising can be hard. I find that 2-3 Transmissions can be bought before expenses are too much. If the cure is exponential, you must address this with symptoms and abilities (the cure must be below 55% at end game). When Genetic Shifts are high, it is time to fill out all the cheap symptoms, whatever they are, and I like this order:

    • Hendra Traits (I do this earlier if a lot of Transmissions mutated)

    • Encephalitic Shift

    • Headache

    • Nuchal Rigidity

    • Fever

    • Seizures

    • Photophobia

    • Blurred Vision

    • Drowsiness

    • Confusion

    6. END GAME

    If you don't have all the transmissions mutated by now you may have infectivity problems. If you don't have enough Lethality you will kill the world a month too late. If you have too much Lethality, then Kazakhstan, China, Canada or Iceland will likely kill before full infection. If the cure is too high, you have to focus on Memory Loss / Hallucinations / Coma / Genetic Hardening 1/2/3.

    • Transmissions in priority order: (Horse 1/2, Dog, Bat 4, Swine 2/3)

    • All the Symptoms (Watch Kazakhstan especially before full Lethality)

    • Genetic ReShuffle as needed (Most games this is not needed)

    If Greenland is the loss, more transmission earlier, especially Cold/Drug

    If Kazakhstan is the loss, you need Horse 1/2 earlier (Earlier Hendra)

    If too long, you need lethality quicker

    If too lethal, watch your mutations and countries before hitting high lethality

    If cure is the problem, honestly, it is more likely lethality is a problem. When you kill 3 billion people, the Genetic Shifts and Cure Progress go down dramatically.

  20. Ack! I had cure at 51% and only 300 victims left... pop up "scientists exploit cedar traits"... cure 63%.. damn...so close!

  21. Greenland! You sucked! (of course I only meant the greenland in the game)

  22. Great guide! Haven't got the 3 Biohazard but been so close... Either cure below 55% and between 370 and 380 days or below 365 days and cure between 56 and 60% Need to learn to close up the infection but Great Guide. Thnx

  23. Just to ley you know that your stats may not be accurate... Got 54% cure and 359 days and still 2 biohazards

  24. Is it just me or is there a significantly reduced number of ships traveling to Greenland?

  25. Same here! It's frustrating, seeing Greenland ruining always everything!

  26. Finally got it, with a little tweaking of the first strategy. I evolved the Cold Resistances and Air 1 before Pulmonary Hemorrhage and Respiratory Failure, as the path to Greenland runs through either Iran or Kazakhstan into Russia to Scandinavia, hopefully into an infected boat. Also, I used the Teracyte gene to expedite this process, as I felt like the problem wasn't that those countries weren't sending infected boats, as much as I wasn't getting there soon enough.

  27. I got 3 with wab strategy (very little changes), 59% cure in 338 days, 67k, about 12 tries. (Some greenlan, cqribean and kazakistan).