Some games are meant to be hard to master – from your Dark Souls to your Crash Bandicoots, these games were made to put your skills to the test in every shape or form.
Hades by Supergiant Games has somehow joined the ranks of difficult games to conquer while retaining delightful story elements that encourage players to try a new run again and again. Ultimately, the goal is to help out Zagreus in his quest to escape the underworld and defeat his father Hades, no matter how many times it takes.
The game has since become a juggernaut, emerging as one of the most popular games of 2020. While people love the game’s characters and twist on Greek mythology, it takes most players more than 30 tries to actually see the ending.
If you are one of the many players who have not beaten Hades, don’t worry. No one is here to judge you or fault you for not being the best at fast-paced roguelikes. We here at IGN Southeast Asia want to encourage you to do your best and maybe try out a handful of our tips to finally conquer Hades.
Know Your Weapons
Hades starts you off with a sword, before introducing a shield, a spear, a bow, boxing gloves, and a railgun to your arsenal. While every weapon has their own moveset, strengths and weakness, it’s easy to miss the extra configurations each weapon.
These Aspects, as they are called, will change the way your weapon looks while introducing an extra buff or a modifier that might suit your playstyle even more. For example, the spear’s Aspect of Achilles turns its special attack into a second dash maneuver. These Aspects can also be leveled up through the use of Titan Blood, which you typically get from either the Fury sisters boss fights or by exchanging them with the Wretched Broker in the hub world.
Gods and Keepsakes
Every god in the Greek pantheon has their own line of Boons for players to use on their quest. These range from Zeus’ penchant for blasting lightning on unsuspecting foes to Hermes allowing Zagreus to be lighter on his feet. Getting to know the gods also gives you their Keepsake, an equippable item that can grant you a higher chance of encountering your god of choice.
Find out which combination of boons fits your playstyle: Poseidon’s Call, for instance, makes you impervious to enemy attacks while allowing you to deal massive amounts of damage. Fused with Demeter’s Crystal Beam cast ability, this combo can easily dish out tons of damage on bosses. So, planning ahead on when to equip which boons after a level can help you gain an edge over your opponents.
Death Defiance and Skelly’s Lucky Tooth
If you always find yourself wishing you had one more life after dying in a round, then maybe you should level up Death Defiance as quickly as possible. This will take about 1750 Darkness to fully level up, giving you three tries in a single round. Combined with your training dummy, Skelly and his Keepsake, Skelly’s Lucky Tooth, you’ll have four tries to complete a single run.
With enough practice and the right loadout, a good player can save up all these extra lives for the end boss with Hades, who (spoiler alert) has a few extra lives himself. If you are in need to refill lives, there is the Kiss of Styx item that you can buy for 200 coins, Athena’s boons that recharge a single use, and meeting Patroclus in Elysium also lets you refill every usage of Death Defiance. Skelly’s Tooth can only be used once, mind you.
Renovations in Order
Turns out, focusing on home renovations for the many realms of the underworld can even out the odds on your journey out of there. The House Contractor will use your gemstones and diamonds to give you access to special rooms across your adventure. This could be a fountain room that lets you have a breather to refill your health, or allows for Urns of Wealth to start spawning in rooms, which grants you a higher yield of money to spend.
While it may be tempting to exchange your gemstones for Chthonic Keys to unlock more upgrades for Zagreus, spending some time and investing on these room upgrades is crucial to keep yourself alive on the way to Hades. Once you get Diamonds from beating the Bone Hydra, you can use them for even more extra skills, like healing Zagreus for every Darkness room you beat.
Hammers Over Boons
This might seem counterintuitive at first, but the Daedalus Hammers are usually a better early game pickup than the Boons the gods provide. At the end of the day, the main thing a player needs to beat Hades is to have raw attack power, which the Hammers provide compared to the status effects and minor buffs that boons provide.
The Hammers upgrade and change the way your weapon handles, so practicing and knowing which one suits your playstyle is crucial. They only affect your regular and special attacks, which are your main way of dealing damage anyway. Only two Daedalus Hammers are allowed to be used, so once you have two of these modifiers, you can focus on your Boons.