This guide explains what One Shot Protection is, how it works, and optionally how to abuse it to conquer the planet with wrath and fury - every run.
Guide to One Shot Protection
What Is One Shot Protection (OSP)?
One Shot Protection, abbreviated OSP, is a hidden functionality in the game. No where in-game is it ever mentioned that this will likely save your runs countless times. One shot protections is a very basic mechanic, and it can rather easily be deduced from its name what the intention behind it is.
You cannot be one shot in this game, meaning you cannot be killed in a single instance of received damage, but you can be killed in a single attack. As an example, the Greater Wisp fires two projectiles leading to two different instances of damage. If you're only hit by one of them, you cannot be one shot, where as if you're hit by both of them, you can be killed by a single attack, whereas this is technically not a one shot.
Being one shot would make for a dull experience, as evading every single attack is a tough challenge, even for a veteran. As difficulty increases with run time, every single enemy in the game would potentially be able to one shot you after enough playtime, but luckily OSP is here to save you from the wrath of the planet.
How OSP Works
Before explaining how it works, you will have to get acquainted with some terms:
- Natural health: The green part of your health bar. The value of your natural health is increased by leveling up, or by collecting items any of these items: Infusion (Uncommon), Titanic Knurl (Boss), Pearl (Boss - Cleansing Pool), and Irradiant Pearl (Boss - Cleansing Pool).
- Shield: The blue part of your health bar. You do not naturally have any shield and the value of your shield can only be increased with these items: Personal Shield Generator (Common), Silence Between Two Strikes (Equipment), and Transcendence (Lunar). You can also obtain shield temporarily with Wake of Vultures (Rare).
- Barrier: The yellow / orange meter that can fill out your health bar. You do not naturally gain barrier, and you can only obtain barrier with these items: Topaz Brooch (Common) and Aegis (Rare).
- Max health: Your current max health, meaning the number on the right side of the forward slash on your health bar.
- Real health: Your current real health, meaning the number on the left side of the forward slash of the health bar.
Your max health is calculated by adding your natural health and shield together. Your max health then consists of the green and blue part of your health bar. Shield is not to be seen as a separate part of your health, but instead as a part of your natural health, which you can increase with items.
Your real health is calculated by adding your current health, shield, and barrier together. The absolute maximum, which your real health can ever achieve is 200%, or twice the amount, of your max health, where natural health
One Shot Protection was updated in the Hidden Realms update, released on the 17th of December, 2019. Before the update, it was impossible to receive more than 90% of your max health in damage, as long as your current real health was higher than 90% of your max health. This meant that if your real health was above 180% of your max health, you would be able to withstand two instances of high damage before OSP deactivating. In other words, there was no reason to fear a single Greater Wisp. Of course, this required a lot of healing and barrier gain to achieve.
While it is still true that you cannot take more than 90% of your max health as damage, this is only the case when your real health is between 90% and 100% of your max health. Any values of real health higher than 100% of your max health now means you cannot take more damage than what would put you down to 10% real health.
While barrier was nerfed, it is still very strong, as it allows you to heal 2 different health bars at once, thereby decreasing the time spent before OSP will be active once again.
How to Execute It on a Per Run Basis or "The Meta"
Parts of this section does indeed include personal opinions. I will try to mark any subjective parts, so as not to shove my opinion down people's throat.
As mentioned earlier, you will eventually reach a point of difficulty where max health does not matter in the same scale as early on in a run. When you reach this point of time, what matters then will be how fast you regain One Shot Protection and not how hard a hit you can withstand. There are only four major factors that influence the time at which OSP is regained:
- Barrier gain.
- Healing rate.
- Max health.
Since you will want to reach 90% real health as fast as possible, you will obviously want as much barrier gain and healing rate as possible.
As OSP is based on how large a percentage of real health you have compared to your max health, increasing your max health will also increase the value of real health you will need to have OSP be active. Contrary, decreasing max health will also decrease the value of real health needed for OSP to be active.
Shield regenerates after a certain time of not taking shield damage, meaning your OSP will be set on a timer, if you obtain some form of shield. This alone is the reason why I believe Personal Shield Generator is the single worst item in the game, and why Wake of Vultures is looked upon with unfavourable eyes from part of the playerbase.
I believe that the only upside of ever obtaining shield is to have some health, which is invulnerable to fire and malachite debuffs.
To get the most out of your OSP, you will simply have to follow these guidelines:
- Increase your barrier gain and healing rate to increase your survivability.
- Never increase your max health. Decreasing it, on the other hand, will increase your survivability.
- Never obtain any form of shield, as shield decreases your survivability.
The second guideline is also the reason why, in my opinion, Shaped Glass is the single most strong item in the entire game and without doubt the best lunar item. You double your damage and increase your survivability. What's not to like? This lunar item has no downsides, and I strongly believe it should be nerfed.
- If you want to abuse OSP, stack Shaped Glass.