- "Jesus that thing was angry!"
- —Isaac, after fighting a male Tripod for the first time.
There are two types of Tripods: Male and Female. Both are extremely violent, even by Necromorph standards.
Males are the more common type of Tripod Isaac encounters on the Sprawl. It is a massive Necromorph, comparable in size to a Brute, formed from numerous hosts. It attacks by swinging its arm in a wide arc, slamming its fist into the ground, flailing around its bladed tongue, or by pouncing on its victim from a distance. Its only weak points are three yellow pustules (one on each arm, and one on the tongue). After both arms are dismembered, it will finally die. However, after losing one arm it will use its bladed tongue to attack. Destroying this will kill it, but occasionally it may continue to attack. The areas they are encountered in are almost invariably very large, open and usually circular.
Only one female Tripod is encountered in Dead Space 2. While also formed from multiple corpses, the primary host appears to be a human female. Most disturbingly, an infant's body and limbs are seen growing out of the Tripod's tentacle.
A Female Tripod is encountered by Isaac in the Church of Unitology. The Tripod first pounces on Isaac from above, knocking him to the ground. It then grabs and drags him across the floor, attempting to hit him with its bladed tongue but Isaac dodges it. The tongue acts similarly to a Drag Tentacle, except with a yellow sack made from an infant as a weak point. Once Isaac shoots the sack enough times, it will explode, rendering the bladed tongue no longer effective, and the female Tripod will release him and retreat. However, hitting it about 30 times in the body with the Hand Cannon on Casual or Normal will kill it.
- Always stay on the move. Due to its long arms, a Tripod can easily catch up to you if you stand still. Even if you are on the other side of the room, a Tripod will close the distance in seconds, usually hurting you in the process.
- The Flamethrower does an excellent job of burning off Tripod limbs. It is especially useful in the Tripod Nest.
- Stasis is crucial. A Tripod under Stasis is an easy target for any of your weapons. With enough firepower, you should be able to dismember one of its arms after 1 stasis shot.
- If you don't have Stasis, weapons like the Line Gun, Flamethrower and Pulse Rifle, due to their wide range and/or rapid fire capabilities, can make dismembering an un-Stasised Tripod easier.
- Conversely, unless you're a good shot, weapons like the Plasma Cutter, Seeker Rifle, Contact Beam or any other precision weapons are NOT recommended for fighting an un-Stasised Tripod. Since the weak points are on its arms, they're always moving, making lining up a shot difficult. However, if you ARE a good shot, particularly with the Seeker Rifle, it only takes 2 zoomed shots to dismember an arm, un-upgraded, even on Zealot.
- In the elevator sequence when the Tripods surround it and try to grab Isaac through the windows in chapter 7, dismembering a Tripod's arm will instantly kill it. However, it is much easier to kill a Tripod with one shot from an un-upgraded Detonator on the easier difficulties, as well as use the Pulse Rifle's Alt-Fire and the Contact Beam on their chest area, and they will let go.
- In the Tripod's Nest, where you last encounter the Tripods, using the explosive canisters to stun it and do damage is quite helpful in dispatching a Tripod. However, you don't have to kill any Tripods during this sequence, as a live Tripod will die seconds after you blow up the second Tank.
- In the Tripod nest section it is effective to dismember one of the first Tripod's arms, thus somewhat hampering its movements. Then using stasis to further slowing it down, destroy the tanks during this time.
- When you dismember one of its arms, it starts using its tongue for attacking Isaac. If you Stasis it at the moment the tongue comes out, you can dismember it. It helps do extreme damage to the Tripod, and it is easier to kill when hitting the second arm. However, it is extremely difficult to hit it when not under Stasis. Using the Flamethrower or the Pulse Rifle would be a good choice.
- In the Church of Unitology, if Isaac doesn't shoot the sack enough times, the Tripod brings its blade down on Isaac's right arm, severing it. It then proceeds to lift him up, slam him into the wall, then into the floor, knocking his helmet off. While it holds him down, it raises its scythe and rams it down into Isaac's mouth. It pulls the scythe back out, severing Isaac's head. As his body twitches, then lies still, the creature's arm suddenly comes down on his abdomen and rips his body in half. This also happens with male tripods, the only difference being it does not slash off Isaac's arm.
- If Isaac is killed during the elevator ride to the Solar Arrays, one of the Tripods will stab Isaac in the stomach with its tongue-blade. As Isaac screams, the blade then cuts off his right arm, also knocking off his helmet. With Isaac still standing, the Tripod then cuts off Isaac's other arm. As Isaac screams in pain, the Tripod grabs him with its third foot and throws him out the window. The camera then zooms in on its disfigured face.
- If Isaac does not kill the male Tripod in time, his air runs out and he collapses from suffocation. Occasionally, the Tripod will decapitate Isaac after he runs out of air.
- The Tripod has been said to have a nest, as seen in one of the Dead Space 2 Achievements/Trophies, "Hornet's Nest." It is destroyed in an explosion near the end of Chapter 9.
- Observing the malformed head of a male Tripod will reveal that its "head" is actually a man's head, which is twisted upside-down.
- If you shoot the Female Tripod's weak spot with the Javelin Gun or Hand Cannon, it will release you instantly. If you do this before it drags Isaac for the first time, the Pack will not attack. However, taking just a couple steps forward will trigger the fight.
- Strangely, the Flamethrower is incredibly powerful against Tripods even on Hardcore mode without upgrades; being able to dismember their arms incredibly fast.
- The male Tripod is made up of 6 bodies, male bodies for the arms, leg, and head/back, an infant without a clarified gender for the tongue blade and a female body for the stomach.
- A kinesis impalement with a Slasher blade can dismember any appendage that is hit, making it a less difficult kill.
- After you kill the first Tripod if you shoot it, use Kinesis to pick up its Semiconductor drop, or walk too close it will thrash around a bit and possibly do slight damage, but it will die shortly afterwards regardless.
- It is NOT necessary to shoot the female tongue to make her release you. If you are playing on easy or normal and have the Handcannon, about thirty shots to the body will make her let go. However, given that the Hand Gun is impossibly powerful, and the sheer number of shots it takes, you would run out of ammo for all other weapons long before you dealt enough damage to the Tripod's body to escape.
- When a male Tripod kills Isaac, the Tripod will not slice off his right arm. Also, Isaac does not scream or choke.
- During the first Tripod fight, after severing the first arm, the Tripod starts using a lunge attack with its bladed tongue. If you stasis the Tripod directly after a lunge that you avoid, and shoot the yellow infected flesh on the tongue, it will eventually be dismembered, and this will kill the Tripod, despite its second arm still being intact. On Hardcore mode, it takes only 4 shots to dismember the tongue with the un-upgraded Plasma Cutter, versus several for the arm; thus saving ammo.
- In the Tripod's death sequence in the Solar Array, Isaac is able to scream even though he was in an air vacuum. This may be because his suit has a separate 'atmosphere' of air for him to breathe, as earlier in the game when a EarthGov gunship destroys the glass while Isaac is being captured by Diana, he makes no special hurry to put his helmet back on.