Zombie Hunter University, Fairview

Dr. Raglan's Scientific-Minimalist School of Dead Frontier Weapons, Builds & Boss-Hunting

Scientific-Minimalist Guide to Dead Frontier Boss Hunting: Giant Spiders (with videos)


Giant Spiders come in two versions: Regular and Flaming Hot. As with all Boss Zombies, the two sub-species are essentially the same, but the burning version is stronger and harder to kill.

Boss Type



Health Points



Damage Per Hit



Experience Earned




Orange, Red, Black

Orange, Red, Black, White


Giant Spiders are more impervious to the Scientific Minimalist approach. Heavy firepower is important against these creatures.

The problem is speed: giant spiders stay right up close. Try to outrun them; they will catch up. Try to whack them with melee; they will sting.

Theoretically, students could move at regular speed, then sprint and dodge as the GS pauses to strike, but this requires perfect timing and sustained concentration. Odds are an inexperienced student will slip up and get wounded before killing off the Giant Spider with a single-fire weapon.

Giant Spiders perform poorly at making sharp turns, so students can try sprinting in a tight circle around one while grinding it with a chainsaw. It is possible do this without sustaining damage, but Endurance becomes an issue: energy will probably run out, allowing the GS to land a blow.

What is the answer, then? There are a few possibilities:


Suggested Weapons:

  • Steel 090 or higher chainsaw
  • Battle Axe/Katana or higher melee weapon

If a student want to prove that he/she can kill a GS with Melee or Chainsaw, a dose of speed boost will provide the necessary advantage.


Suggested Weapons

  • K-50M or higher sub-machine gun
  • AK 47 or higher assault rifle
  • M60 or higher heavy machine gun
  • Sweeper or higher shotgun

This method is not exactly fail-safe, but it is safer. A good Sub-Machine Gun, Assault Rifle, Shotgun, or Heavy Machine Gun will do the job. Generally, these weapons are better for crowds than individuals, because they spray bullets in a somewhat inaccurate pattern; however, the GS runs so fast that it will always be two inches from the barrel, insuring that most bullets hit the target.

Students need enough DPS to kill the Giant Spider as quickly as possible, but more important is knockback to provide safety. This makes Shotguns attractive, even though they deliver less damage per second. For example, a Hammerhead assault rifle will kill a GS faster than an AA-12 shotgun will, but it will be necessary to do a better job of dodging because the Hammerhead does not fend off the super-sized arachnid very well. An AA-12 almost make the task seem safe.

The lowest level weapon that can execute this strategy comfortably ("comfortably" being a relative term) is the K-50M submachine gun. Other weapons will kill the creature faster, but the K-50M has enough knockback and DPS to do the job, for students who know what they are doing.

Reloading is also an issue, because those pauses give the GS an opportunity to strike. If I had to choose between a K-50M submachine gun with slightly better DPS and a XM8 assault rifle with much larger ammo capacity, I would pick the latter, unless my Reloading stat were maxed.

Ideally, the goal is to stay alive long enough to trap the Giant Spider. Run through the streets looking for obstacles, such as cars so close together that humans can squeeze through but not the GS.  There are utility poles on every street corner that are too tight for the GS; running through them will lure the Spider into getting stuck in a vulnerable position, allowing for some easy shooting (until other zombies catch up).

These are most likely temporary solutions: they will provide some time to recharge energy before sprinting again, but not enough to finish the GS. The aggro that accompanies Boss Zombies will arrive; the Giant Spider will eventually shake itself loose from obstacles.

The worst nightmare in this scenario is an aggro swarm, with the Giant Spider bulldozing a dozen zombies forward. In this case, a K-50M will not be strong enough to hold them back. Instead, try zig-zagging to shake a few off from the crowd, minimizing the number being pushed forward by the Giant Spider. Either that, or open fire with a Vulcan.

Ultimately, try to get the GS behind a fence, then finish it off with a single-fire weapon. Preferred weapons are Alpha Bull revolver, a VSS rifle, or something bigger, such as a Greyhawk or an Ironsight.


Suggested Weapons

  • K-50M or higher sub-machine gun
  • AK 47 or higher assault rifle
  • M60 or higher heavy machine gun
  • Sweeper or higher shotgun
  • Grinder or higher chainsaw
  • Battle Axe/Katana or higher melee weapon

Another option is to confront the Giant Spider in an enclosed area that keeps the aggro outside, allowing a one-on-one confrontation with the opponent. A small tennis court, without obstacles, is ideal for this.

Stick close to the perimeter, firing while retreating. Maneuver in a rectangular pattern, matching the shape of the combat arena, moving in sharp angles rather than curves. Spring away at a right angle if GS strikes.

Because the GS is poor at making sharp turns, it will be slowed down by its attempts to in a rectangular pattern.This will provide breathing room; students will be less likely to run out of energy. If no other zombies wander into the court, students may eventually work up enough confidence to toss aside the grinding weapon and use a single-fire weapon or even melee.


Burning Spiders are extraordinarily fast and resistant to knock-back. I tried fighting one with an FM Mitrail, the Burning Spider ran right through the bullets as if they were dust motes. This suggests the best strategy against them is...


Suggested Weapons:

  • M60 heavy machine gun or higher
  • Vulcan mini-gun or higher

Get the strongest machine gun accessible, preferably with a firing speed of 12 rounds per second. (The Hammerhead assault rifle delivers equivalent DPS to the Vulcan; however, its firing rate of 8.57 rounds per second provides less knock-back, making it less effective at fending off Giant Flaming Spiders.)

Forget about the ammunition and expense; take damage-boosting drugs; and employ the strategies noted above.

On the other hand…


Suggested Weapons

  • Buzzblade or Goretooth chainsaw

The trick to killing Giant Burning Spiders is not so much DPS as staying alive long enough to do the job. Normally, this takes extraordinarily good dodging skills, but with a speed boost, the task becomes – if not easy, then at least do-able by a competent Chainsaw student.

In fact, with a speed boost,it is possible to kill a Giant Burning Spider without ever firing a shot; a chainsaw will suffice. Use this strategy:

Walking backwards, retreat around the perimeter of the area, running the chainsaw continuously. Sprint only when the Giant Burning Spider pauses to strike. Either the Flaming Giant Spider will miss, or the chainsaw will stun the arachnid, so that, if the blow lands, it will have no effect. About the only way to get hurt is if an obstruction slows a student down long enough for the Spider to land a hit.

The Giant Burning Spider is fast, so after doing this for a couple of circuits, any aggro will be left behind. At this point, begin circling the arachnid as close possible. Dodge if the Giant Burning Spider pauses to strike; retreat if more zombie show up. After ditching the aggro again, resume circling and grinding.

There are only two skills required to pull this off successfully:

  1. It is necessary to run a tight circle around the Giant Burning Spider, maintaining contact between the chainsaw and the target. As long as this is happening, the Giant Burning Spider will keep spinning, without pausing to strike. However, since perfection is unlikely, the arachnid will occasionally get a chance to pause and strike. This brings us to….
  2. Conserve sprint. Running at full speed makes it easy outmaneuver the Giant Burning Spider, but with a speed boost, it is not necessary to sprint continuously - although a fair percentage of energy will be used to outrun aggro. When alone with the Giant Burning Spider, it is imperative to control fear while battling the arachnid mano-a-mano. If Energy does run out, switch to a mini-gun, which should have enough knock back to hold the beast back while Energy regenerates.

I have successfully executed this strategy using a Goretooth chainsaw, taking about five minutes to kill the Giant Burning Spider, which managed to strike me only once. High endurance is definitely a benefit – not only to survive the occasional blow but also to extend the length of sprint time.


Doctor Raglan lectures on tactics, strategies, and weapons that will insure success when hunting Giant Spiders.



Doctor Raglan gives advice on overcoming the even great difficulty of hunting a Giant Flaming Spider.



One giant spider is (relatively) easy. What about two? Find how how...



This un-narrated video shows Doctor Raglan taking out a Giant Spider by using a Hammerhead assault rifle. It's slightly more accurate than a mini-gun, so it's possible to focus fire on the GS while also spraying enough bullets to hold off aggro. (Note that all the damage taken comes not from the GS but from the zombie hell-hounds.) Also note what happens when another survivor enters the screen: the Giant Spider becomes less predictable as it changes course to purse the other survivor. This provides a breather but also makes it harder to anticipate what the GS will do next.


  1. Burning Zombies
  2. Titans
  3. Mothers
  4. Wraiths
  5. Giant Spiders
  6. Black Titans

Return to Introduction to Boss Hunting.