More Death Stranding Guides:
- Tips and Tricks for Surviving.
- How to Unlock Weapons and Equipment.
- How to Repair, Charge and Use Reverse Trikes and Trucks.
- How to Enter South Knot City With Nuke.
- How to Create, Equip and Use Grenades.
- How to Build Structures with the PCC.
- How to Stop Timefall Rain and Snow.
- How to Check the Weather.
- Floating Carrier Guide.
- How to Fast Travel.
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Death Stranding is a mysterious game, but one thing you’ll learn early on is that the nightmarish BTs are not to be trifled with. Known only as Beached Things, these shadowy figures can appear out of nowhere to ruin your day, and even once you have the tools to fight back, you can still have a tough time. We’ve broken down the best ways to detect, avoid, escape, and defeat BTs in Death Stranding.
How to Detect BTs
First things first, BTs are almost invisible to most people, but thanks to a trait known as DOOMs, and the help of his BB unit, Sam can see the shadowy forms of BTs when remaining near motionless in their presence. As a general rule of thumb, BTs are always found in areas where timefall rain is present, mostly found in narrow valleys or mountain passes, and always at the site of large ruins where people died.
If you have no choice but to enter their home turf, remember that Sam’s condition only allows him to sense their presence. This comes in a two-fold slowdown: Once at the edge of their territory where you’ll start to see grass rapidly grow and die, and again when you start getting close to BTs, where your Odradek Sensor will become active and spin into gear. At this point, your BB will connect with the Odradek Sensor to give you a better idea of where the closest BT is.
Only by remaining still will you be able to get a glimpse of shadowy figures floating around you. If your BB is suffering from Autotoxemia or is otherwise out of commission, you’ll have only your wits to guide you.
How to Avoid BTs
If you absolutely have to enter a region teeming with BTs, let your objective guide you. If you simply need to pass through the region, it can sometimes be better to stick to the edges of their territory. That way, if you do get noticed, you’re less likely to get surrounded when trying to escape. However, if your order requires you to collect cargo from their lair, you’ll need to take things slow, and try to avoid central areas where more of them are likely to be.
The Odradek Sensor revolves between a few different modes to tell you how close you are to danger. Keep a close eye on it, as you’ll need to react a moment’s notice sometimes - risk getting spotted.
- At the longest range, your Odradek will simply face the current BT with its “hand” outstretched, occasionally “blinking” to indicate that you are fairly far from them. You can use this as a radar to know where /not/ to move. During this stage, you should even be able to keep moving as normal - so long as you aren’t sprinting or gunning it in a vehicle.
- Once the Odradek begins “blinking” more rapidly, you’ll know that you’re getting closer to the BT its currently targeting. At this point, you should be crouching at all times, as moving any faster can risk detection. At this range, you should be able to stop and see the outline of the nearest BTs.
- When the Odradek starts to spin rapidly, that’s a sign that your extremely close to the BT in question. This doesn’t guarantee you’ll be spotted, but unnecessary noise will most definitely get its attention. Make sure your stamina is at full, because now is the time to hold your breath by holding R1 and continue crouch walking away from the BT until your Odradek goes back to the previous mode - then let go of R1 to draw in a breath. If done correctly, the BT will be too far away to hear.
If, despite your best efforts, a BT becomes aware of your presence, you’ll hear a dramatic musical stab, your Odradek sensor will turn orange and “point”, and large footprints that splash tar into the air will start moving to the location you were heard at. This doesn’t always mean you’ll get attacked - if you’re fast, you can scoot or climb away from the location, and as long as you are outside the area it detected you, you might be able to continue on as it looks around.
If you’re still around when the footsteps reach you, get ready to fight for survival. Black tar will envelop an area around you, as bodies emerge to drag you down. You’ll need to alternate between hitting square to knock away each body, while also keeping your balance by holding L2 and R2 when needed. If you should run out of stamina and fall down, things will get a lot worse - so be sure to punch only as needed, then try to run to the edge of the tar. If you get close and see them coming up again, try jumping for a quick hop for freedom. If you manage to get out of the tar, you can quickly sprint away before the BT comes looking for you again.
How to Defeat BTs
If avoidance is unlikely and confrontation inevitable, there are a few tools you can use to take the fight to them, but given your limited resources, they should usually be a last resort.
Due to Sam’s unique condition as a “repatriate”, his blood and bodily fluids has an inverse effect on BTs. Early on, you will find that while resting in your private room, you can shower, urinate, and defecate to earn special EX Grenades that can be used on BTs.
While they can’t outright kill the ghosts, EX Grenade 0 (from showering) and EX Grenade 1 (from urination) can be thrown at a BT you’ve spotted to make them run away for a bit, and EX Grenade 2 (from fecal matter) will stun BTs with a larger cloud for a greater amount of time - but they are only really good for quickly moving past a dangerous area.
The only real way to deal with BTs is with blood-based weaponry, like the Hematic Grenades you’ll obtain near the end of the Episode 2. Though it requires your own blood to use, a grenade can cause one or even several of the spectral BTs to get caked in red, and float up into the air before vanishing - leaving behind Chiral Crystals. Once you advance into Episode 3, you’ll be able to start accessing more weapons, including Anti-BT Guns that fire special blood-infused bullets. These can actually take out a BT in a single shot - but again, they require your own blood to work, so prep for these encounters by having extra Blood Packs equipped so you don’t bleed yourself dry. The Bola weapon can also bind and stun BTs long enough for you to bypass them, but they don’t deal any damage. However, you may encounter a tool later in the game to dispatch BTs at close range that works extremely well paired with the Bola Gun.
How to Defeat a Catcher
If BTs overwhelm you before you can dispatch them with blood weaponry, you’ll be dragged through the tar - but this isn’t game over. You’ll be thrust into a sort of mini-boss fight, as you’re taken to the center of the BT area as its transformed into a large tar pool, and a large BT known as a Catcher emerges to kill you. The shape of these animal-like creatures can vary, but you’ll need to act fast or risk defeat.
Unlike regular BTs, it will take more than one hit from a blood-based weapon to defeat them. Instead, you’ll want to get to higher ground as soon as possible to get out of the tar and their attack range. Once on temporarily safe ground, use your Odradek scanner to figure out where they’ll emerge from the tar, and either throw Hematic Grenades or use Anti-BB guns to start dealing damage fast before they submerge again.
The Catcher will regularly ram into your high ground and cause it to sink, so to fight effectively you’ll need to constantly be on the move, and plan your escape path in advance so you don’t get stuck in the mud. Be sure to ping your scanner too, as you may find extra weapons or gear in the mini-boss arena.
If you run out of ammo, you still have some options: Be on the lookout for other online players. They aren’t actually in your game, but you can see these white figures bearing names of people you may have seen using their equipment, and they’ll automatically lift up items like Hematic Grenades or extra Blood Bags to toss your way. However, if things are too dangerous and ammo scarce, you can always run for the edge of the Catcher’s territory - look on the map and you’ll see the black ring, and you can plan your escape towards the side closest to you.
If you whittle down the health of the Catcher, or just escape their massive territory, the battle is over. Defeating them will earn you a lot of Chiral Crystals - but either victory or escape will always clear the area of any timefall and BTs, allowing you to traverse the area without worry for a long while! This is especially important when delivering important cargo - as sometimes it’s better to clear an area before starting a big order, so you don’t run the risk of damaging your cargo.