Plague Inc.[Submitted Guide] Unknown Origins Scenario: Fungus

This guide has been written and submitted by Dr Bulgaria. 

Spicy's Comments: This guide has brought to my attention the Fungus' advantages in the Unknown Origin scenario. Particularly, being able to start at any country because of its unique spore abilities. It's a very well written guide that also gives Dr Bulgaria's insights on the scenario itself. I have not made any significant changes to his guide/strategy except for its structure. Don't forget to thank Dr Bulgaria for this amazing guide.

Unknown Origin Scenario (Any country):

In a way this scenario is the easiest of them all because it is the same plagues you already know and love/hate but you do not get to choose a starting country. Starting country is selected at random. 

The easiest way to beat is to cheat: keep on restarting until you get a favourable starting country (hint: China) and play as usual. If you aim to be a fair player however or if you love a challenge you have to be able to beat this with ANY starting country. I easily managed to beat the crap out of this scenario with the Neurax Worm (my favourite plague anyway) on Brutal and scoring 3 Biohazards by strategically deploying Trojan planes so I thought this would be the way to go on Mega Brutal. After about 20 failed attempts however I changed my mind. 

The main problem here is the initial infectivity since you cannot pre-choose the right Genes - even if you choose Native Biome this is not enough since you may be inserted into a dry country after choosing Hydrophile, wet one after choosing Xerophile etc. I came to the conclusion that only one disease type allows you to start in any country and yet develop without hindrance infecting other countries - Fungus. By using the spore burst ability you can get your disease into about 20 starting countries at the same time while evolving transmissions and infectious symptoms and get both infecting and killing the world fast not allowing the Cure to overdevelop. 

I tested it several times adjusting symptoms accordingly and while there is no single way to victory I managed to get 3 biohazards on Mega-Brutal in 3 out of 5 tries. Chance plays a significant role as spore bursts are random but with the right tactic chance will be on your side and you will succeed more often than you will fail. Here is some general advice:

  1. Pay attention to the messages displayed during the game. Getting one of those "Airplanes use/Ships use new sterilisation techniques" early in the game is a bad sign and usually means you will fail because one of those pesky islands will remain uninfected while the rest of the world burns (could be Greenland but it could also be the Philippines). Try to adjust your symptoms accordingly to the random events (fall in urban populace for example means that symptoms like sneezing will be less effective in spreading the disease and you should avoid it)
  2. During the initial stage of the game play on slow. This tactic requires you to take full advantage of popping the red bubbles as soon as they appear and then spending the DNA point as soon as you acquire it. You can speed it up towards the middle
  3. Once you are done using the Spore Burst ability check to see if you managed to infect at least one country on each continent ideally some islands and if you are lucky India, China or Pakistan. If only rich/small/cold countries are infected restart (you must be REALLY unlucky to not hit at least a couple of Petri dishes from 12 tries). After using the second Spore eruption again check how many countries are still uninfected. If there are more than 3 island countries you might as well restart.

Gene setup:

Catalytic Switch or ATP Boost - take your pick. In my opinion Catalytic is better since it allows you to get easy DNA points later in the game when you do not get so much DNA from infections/deaths. This can allow you to do a late Genetic reshuffle and maximise your score. You can also evolve some late lethal symptoms to turbo speed the rate at which people die. If you choose ATP boost I would use it for several early symptoms picks - Abscesses, Hypersensitivity and/or Rash.

Aquacyte - no matter how lucky you are you would still need to be able to spread by sea to at least several islands. This one would help

Patho Stasis - you need this for Spore bursts

Darwinist or Genetic Mimic - again take your pick. Being able to evolve a couple of extra symptoms for free is nice, help with stopping the Cure is not so bad either. Personally I prefer Genetic Mimic

Extremophile - you want ALL the initially infected countries to get red ASAP

1. The first stage of this game involves a routine. Pop the first red bubble than immediately spend the DNA for a spore burst. Pop the red bubble in the newly infected country and again immediately spend it for another spore burst. Keep going until you finish all your spore bursts (do not spend Spore Eruptions yet). If you are doing all right at this stage you should have some extra 8-9 DNA points from infections or occasional orange bubbles bursts. Spend them on Water 1 the moment you have enough. Spend the rest on the following symptoms as soon as you can: Cysts, Hypersensitivity, Rash

2. You have to play it slow after finishing with the bursts and evolve Air 1 as soon as you can

3. Evolve Sweating and Skin lesions as soon as you have the DNA

4 Evolve 1 Spore Eruption and pop the bubbles ASAP. Use the DNA to evolve Water 2 then evolve Air 2 as soon as you have enough DNA.

5. I you are lucky at this stage infection will be going fast enough to allow you to rack up some extra DNA points and evolve Extreme Bioaerosole. If you are not so lucky use your second Spore Eruption pop the red bubbles and use the DNA to do it. This is a judgement call but if you see that your DNA points remain unchanged for a long period of time (a month) use it.

6. Evolve Inflammation wait to collect enough DNA and evolve Necrosis

7. Evolve Drug resistance 1, Cold 1, Heat 1 then Drug resistance 2

8. Evolve Internal Haemorrhage and Immune suppression. Pop your second Spore Eruption if you haven't done so already and evolve Spore Hardening. Evolve Cold 2 Heat 2 and Environmental Hardening.

9. Evolve Total Organ Failure, Coma, Paralysis, Seizures and insanity as soon as you have the DNA to do it. After that you can evolve some more killing symptoms of you wish or use the final points you are getting for Genetic reshuffle - use them for symptoms if you are running out of time and for Reshuffle if Cure if it is getting too high (more than 25%)

This last stage is kind of chaotic especially if you like playing on fast as I do. You have to adjust your strategy accordingly to the circumstances. If your plague is taking too long to infect countries use your second Spore eruption early and bank on luck to infect the last islands. If you are infecting fast enough but the islands are not infected wait and use it at a late stage to infect the last 5-6 countries at once. Your aim is to finish the game before 365 days and with a cure bellow 30%. You have to move to the Necrosis stage as soon as possible and then be a bit lucky with the final infections. One repeat failure I had and this one is entirely down to luck unfortunately is to have spend both my Spore Eruptions and still have a non infected island - New Zealand, Madagascar, Greenland, Philippines etc. If this happens you are out of luck and will have to restart.

That's it! Good luck

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