In Days Gone, Freakers are zombie-style creatures that roam the wasteland hunting for survivors. They’re a result of a mysterious virus that has taken over the host’s mind and driven them mad. Some of the viral strains have also had an effect on the body of the host, causing mutations that better serve the mindless masses. There are even some animals that have succumbed to the virus and become raving monsters.
Here is a list of all the nine Freaker types found in the game ranked by how dangerous they are. By the way, the last entry on the list is a major spoiler for anyone who hasn’t discovered the secret ending, so fair warning!
Newts are the unfortunate result of children who have become infected with the virus. They are fast, agile, and annoying to fight. Fortunately for the player, they act more like scavengers or opportunists, attacking Deacon only if his health is too low, if he gets too close, or if he opens the trunk of a car they happen to be hiding in. If the player encounters them at full health, keeps their distance, and doesn't explore cars, the Newts will never attack.
In battle, they have little health and aren’t terribly aggressive when attacking. They’re rather easy to put down, though their small stature can make things tricky, especially if there are lots of them.
Criers are crows that have become infected with the virus. In massive groups they can become incredibly dangerous and can easily swarm Deacon, so the trick is to never let them group up. If the player makes a habit of clearing out any Crier nests they find and is careful to dodge the handful that are around, then they aren’t much of a threat.
Even if a swarm does form the player can avoid taking too much damage by dodging and running away, doing anything else will result in death. If they were only ever found in swarms and there was no way to minimize their numbers, they would easily rank higher, but given it’s easy to destroy the nests and a few are manageable, they end up here.
The standard zombie of the game and by far the most common, Swarmers are a negligible threat on their own and can be dispatched rather easily. Even if the player is caught by surprise one or two of these aren’t enough to be cause for concern.
It’s when they hold to their namesake and are fought in large packs that they become a major threat. They usually travel in groups and will often join up with others they find. Fighting a swarm of these creatures makes for some of the most iconic moments of the game. Supposedly the game’s engine can support up to 500 Swarmers, a serious threat to even the most prepared players.
Because Swarmers are so dangerous when grouped together, they become a serious adversary if they aren't taken down quickly. The Screamer may not be all that dangerous on her own, but she has the unique ability to summon other Freakers in the area to the player’s presence.
Most commonly this will bring in hordes of Swarmers, but it can also summon in some of the more lethal Freaker types. The player is advised to either give her plenty of space or act swiftly to take her down before she starts screaming. The last thing anyone would want is to tackle a Rager and a horde of Swarmers at the same time.
These are Swarmers that have mutated one step further, developing additional advantages over their more common counterparts. They’re much faster, stronger, and more resilient to damage. The player won’t start seeing them until some time into the game, and they’re a deadlier change of pace.
It should be telling that the first Reacher the player encounters in the game is considered a boss fight. It’s unclear what’s causing the continual improvement to the Freakers, but it isn’t good news for the player.
Breakers are Reachers or possibly even Swarmers that have been upgraded to be absolute beasts. These monsters are tall, broad, and packing serious muscle. They are also much more resilient than their common counterparts and can take quite the pounding from even the best weapons before they go down.
Fortunately, they’re slow, so the player can easily outrun them with the bike. But if the player gets caught in hand to hand combat with one of these brutes it’s a quick fight that doesn’t end well for the player. It’s best to keep some distance, pepper them with bullets, and then beat a hasty retreat if they start getting too close.
These wolves easily place in the top three for their horrifying ability to appear out of nowhere and knock the player off their bike. These ravenous canines can keep up with a fully upgraded motorcycle and can even outrun it, meaning retreat is not an easy option when facing these mongrels.
Often times, it’s better to stand and fight these beasts, as getting knocked off the bike makes the fight easier for them. But this is easier said than done as Runners often travel in packs and facing a group of these fast and vicious curs is a tough fight for even the best players.
Similar to the Breakers, but much more dangerous and definitely more horrific, Ragers are zombified bears that attack with incredible ferocity and power. The most iconic Rager in the game had strands of barbed wire wrapped around its body and there were chunks of shrapnel and even weapons wedged into its flesh.
These colossal enemies can take a lot of damage and keep on coming, and, if they manage to get close to the player, their massive paws and crushing bites can quickly kill even the most experienced players. Like the Breaker, its best to avoid drawing their attention in the first place, but if you do, don’t be afraid to spray your ammo into them as they charge in or book it if you're low on ammo.
Major spoiler alert, it turns out, the scientist O’Brien is actually an advanced stage of Freaker, one that has the agility, strength, and speed of a Swarmer or maybe even a Reacher, but retains all human intelligence and emotion. It’s a startling twist in the game and one that’s never fully explored.
The inclusion of the Intelligent Freaker on this list might be controversial for some as the player never faces off against O'Brien or any other Freakers like him, but it has major implications for future titles. It’s bad enough facing off against a horde of Swarmers or a zombified bear, but what about a horde of Reachers who can think and act as intelligently as survivors like Deacon? It’s a devastating prospect, and Intelligent Freakers would make for an equally audacious enemy in a sequel.