The Heavy Pistol boasts higher per-shot damage than a regular Pistol at the cost of a reduced ammo capacity (9 as opposed to 15), decreased hipfire accuracy, and a lower rate of fire. It shares ammunition with the other handgun types. It can rarely be found when looting uninfected human corpses, and in higher-level weapon crates.
An unmodified Heavy Pistol comes a close second to a Magnum in damage, but boasts a larger capacity, faster firing rate and reloads much quicker. Perhaps most importantly however, the Heavy Pistol - unlike the Magnum - can be modified by pistol mods. This is particularly relevant to Purna players, who can get bonus damage with modded firearms. The bonus will generally push the Heavy Pistol's damage beyond that of an equivalent Magnum, making the Heavy Pistol the best choice for a sidearm unless you prefer the faster-firing Pistol. Characters lacking this upgrade may find the Magnum's superior damage per bullet spent more appealing, if they can cope with its extremely low rate of fire.
- The Heavy Pistol is based on the IMI/Magnum Research Desert Eagle Mark I, with the nine-round magazine implying it is the .357 caliber variant. See the Wikipedia page for more details.
- In Dead Island: Definitive Edition, the Heavy Pistol has been remodeled to be based on the Heckler & Koch USP .45. It retains its 9 round capacity, which would be incorrect for the USP .45. The control lever is also incorrectly mounted on the slide rather than on the grip.