Which is the better occupation in Project Zomboid, Veteran or Police Officer? Let’s take a look at what each offers.

Veteran and Police Officer Compared

SkillsVeteranPolice Officer
Starting Points-8-4
Exclusive SkillDesensitized-

What’s equal

Both the Veteran and Police Officer start with the default 5 Strength and 5 Fitness. They also have the same level of Reloading.

The Difference

Police Officer has an extra level in Aiming. This makes leveling aiming a bit easier as Lv. 3 aiming is where you can comfortably start using pistols and automatic rifles for leveling up. With Lv. 2 aiming you may want to still stick with shotguns.

Furthermore the Veteran occupation itself will cost you 8 points. The 4 point additional cost means you’ll have to make up for it with a negative trait.

The big benefit of the Veteran occupation is that it comes with the exclusive Desensitized trait. Meaning you won’t need to worry about panic.

However the Police Office does start with 1 point in Nimble. Nimble affects how fast you can move when in combat stance (ie when aiming).

Panic affects critical chance and melee damage. At Strong Panic and above gun damage is also reduced. Panic can be prevented temporarily with Beta Blockers.


The Police Officer’s extra point in Aiming is nice to have. But getting Lv. 3 aiming as a Veteran isn’t too hard. You can start with shotguns or if you are running a weapon Mod like Brita’s Weapon Pack pistols and automatic rifles are fine too.

Whilst the point in Nimble is nice to have. It’s more of a benefit to melee weapons as you’ll generally be standing still when shooting guns.

The Desensitized trait however is a benefit only the Veteran has. You’ll be wanting to gun down hoards of zombies so not having to worry about panic is a quality of life improvement.

As a Veteran you’ll need to pick quite a number of Negative traits to offset that -8 starting point. However there are plenty of good Negative traits to pick from.

So put those Beta Blockers away, save yourself the trouble of having to worry about panic and pick the Veteran occupation.

Not sure what traits to pick. Check out our Veteran Build.