Disco Elysium – Beginner’s Guide

A guide for people who want to start their adventures in Disco Elysium. Also good for experienced player.


Hello Rock Star, today I want to teach you something useful to get the most pleasure from this masterpiece. The guide is suitable for completely new players. And for experienced players who want to know more.

The game is quite complicated, there are many moments that cause complete misunderstanding of what to do, what skills to develop, what features of the hero. Therefore, I want to simplify life a little.

I’ll try to advise something reasonable, because I’m still a noob in the game, but lucky… Nevermind, let’s go.

Abilities and Skills

Disco Elysium puts you into the role of a man who has lost his memory. As he pieces together who he is, he also has to solve a murder. To do that, you’ll need to make use of four sets of abilities that govern how the main character interacts with the world.

At the start of Disco Elysium, you can choose between three builds — ThinkerSensitive, and Physical— that divvy up 12 points among the following four abilities:

  • Intellect dictates how smart you are. Its level determines how well you make sense of the world around you.
  • Psyche is a measure of your sensitivity and emotional intelligence. It governs your ability to influence yourself and others.
  • Physique is a definition of your strength and fortitude. This determines how well your entire body is built, inside and out.
  • Motorics describes your senses. This trait also controls your mental and physical agility.

Create your own build!

You can also make your own build, pouring up to six points into any trait (but still limited to 12 points total).

Once you create your own build, you then have to choose a Signature Skill. Each of your four abilities impacts six skills. The level of each ability determines the starting level of each of these 24 skills. Choosing a signature skill will add an additional level to that skill and raises the learning cap for each skill in that class. As you level up, you can add more points to these skills.

Read about what each skill does because they act as an influencing force in your dialogue options within the game. Think of all 24 skills as members of your party. The higher their levels, the more likely they will be to help you out in conversations, discover the secrets of your identity, and learn the cause of the murder.

Be sure to review the Overview and Info tabs for each skill so you know what they do. While you’re selecting your signature skill, you can also respec your character’s base abilities on this screen in case you have second thoughts.

Best Skills – Part 1

Hand/Eye Coordination

Hand/Eye Coordination seems like a pretty situational skill to have at first glance. However, as is the case with pretty much every skill in Disco Elysium, there’s more to this skill than what meets the eye — no pun intended.

With high Hand/Eye Coordination, players can quickly process things visually and let their body take control as everything from shooting guns to performing agile acts becomes second nature. Of course, a high level of Hand/Eye Coordination will lead to players being very trigger-happy in both a metaphorical and literal sense, which might not be an ideal thing in this game.


People who want their character to be more creative will have a great time with the Conceptualization skill. Players will be able to understand the various ideologies in this game and project themselves in the same.

Of course, an extreme level of Conceptualization will lead to players looking at the big picture far too often… but this shouldn’t be the worst drawback around. After all, being a smart cop who can visualize things with great success is a fun character to roleplay in the rich world of Disco Elysium.

Savoir Faire

Most people expect a cop to be extremely smooth and impressive in their movements. Players who want to roleplay a character who excels in this regard will have a great time with the Savoir Faire skill.

Having a ton of control over your movements will let players do everything from sneak with ease to perform impressive moves with the control you have on your limbs. The idea of a cool cop is essentially established with a high level in this particular skill.

Visual Calculus

Given that you play a cop in Disco Elysium, it only makes sense that visualizing and reconstructing a crime scene is of the utmost importance. After all, the main story of Disco Elysium revolves around a crime itself!

This is where Visual Calculus comes into the picture. This skill lets players analyze crime scenes with utmost finesse, to the point where you can almost picture yourself in the criminal’s shoes with deadly accuracy!


Empathy is a trait that a lot of people lack in the real world, so emotional beings genuinely understand the importance of this character trait. In Disco Elysium, this skill opens up many avenues for the player to resonate with the characters that they’re conversing with.

This allows you to connect with other characters in the world on a deeper level. However, this is a double-edged sword, and too much empathy might lead to players mirroring the emotions of their subjects to a downright unhealthy extent.


In detective work, reasoning and deduction are the tools of the trade. The foundation of both those skills is logic, the ability to infer conclusions from pieces of data. While solving the various mysteries on the streets of Revachol, the whole picture is rarely available.

The Logic skill is an essential building block in Disco Elysium, playing a part in nearly everything you’ll do. Putting a lot of points into the Logic skill will make you particularly brilliant, but beware of believing the hype — you can become victim to some rather sweet flattery if you’re not careful.


Rhetoric represents the ability to win arguments, read between the lines, and understand what people are really trying to say. Because conversations are the most significant part of what happens in the game, it may be the most practical skill around for those wanting to follow the Intellect-heavy path.

Because the character employing this skill will tend to call out the verbal shenanigans of the game’s characters, it can lead to you making a few more enemies than you bargained for. It could also result in fewer people actually wanting any part of a conversation with you, so be beware. Additionally, it can affect players who want to use money in less-than-savory ways.


If you’re dealing with the rougher facets of society or those looking not to get caught for any number of things, having a built-in lie detector can be a very handy skill. Enter Drama, which influences your ability to both discern and spot lies in conversation.

Building up Drama also pays dividends when it comes to situations you may not want to have to fight through. Bluffing through arguments, and especially combat, can pave a much easier path in the investigation. There is a pretty big penalty, though, with too much Drama leading to excessive paranoia, which is less than ideal.


Volition is a Psyche skill that essentially moderates your other skills and the responses those skills may give you. It also acts as a representation of your morale — something you’ll need to keep an eye on in order to keep pressing on with the case.

It can make things a little bit boring if you put too much into it, though, there’s no chance of things getting too dicey if Volition is around. Used in moderation, though, it can be a great way to balance your wilder skills and keep yourself safe and out of harm’s way.

Reaction Speed

Reaction Speed is a great choice of skill if you’re opting to build an intelligent set, allowing you to piece together information quickly and solve some of the more stubborn mysteries. It can even prompt you to delve further into places you may not even have thought to go. It makes you highly alert, which can cause you to act rashly in some cases, but always ensures you’ll shoot first.

It will often act before your other skills can even come into play, which can cause issues, but it can sense danger, unlike any other skill. If you can manage the more irrational urges it gives you, Reaction Speed is a great skill to add to your build.

Inland Empire

For those with a bent toward the supernatural, this might be just the skill for you. Revachol is a weird and spooky place, so with a high enough level in Inland Empire, you will be able to sense what lies just beneath the mysterious surface.

Think of this skill as imagination wandering to the craziest of ideas, the hair that stands up at the back of the neck, the feeling that something isn’t quite right. You may end up conversing with your clothing, but that’s not so strange, right? There’s also a slight risk of paranoia as well, but that’s a risk you have to take when you’re dealing with the supernatural.

Best Skills – Part 2


Shivers is a Physique skill and is essentially a sixth sense within Disco Elysium, akin to the ‘Spidey Sense.’ You can use it to see into the past, present, and future of Revachol, granting you information that can be of great use in figuring out the current dilemmas you find yourself in. It’s definitely a little bit supernatural, allowing you to solve problems in ways that make no sense to other characters, but that’s their problem, not yours.

If your Shivers skill is too high, other characters will struggle to understand what you’re saying, with some even deeming you to be a bit crazy. It can also spit out confusing answers too, so you’ll have to decipher what it’s saying before you can even use the information provided. It’s a useful skill, though, and there are no others like it in Disco Elysium.


It may not seem like health, here determined by the Endurance skill, is of the utmost importance in a game about detectives. There are plenty of times, however, where your health will be tested whether through combat or the horrible things the character does to their own body.

If your health runs out in the game, your character has a heart attack, and just as in real life, too many of those are fatal. Increasing Endurance will protect you — there’s no question about it, but it has a secondary purpose as well. Call it trusting the gut — the hunch that the best detectives follow from time to time; Endurance gives voice to those feelings as well, both good and bad.


Just walking through the world of Revachol can yield valuable insight into the mystery at hand. With a high enough Perception skill, details that otherwise would go unnoticed will pop right into view for the player character. Sight, smell, hearing — all the senses are engaged and constantly working.

This can come quite in handy, as you can imagine, but be careful of over-utilizing this skill. The human mind can only process so much detail at once, especially one with the deck so stacked against it from the jump. Too much Perception will overwhelm you and leave you more clueless than you were when you began.


In a world where all types of characters are trying to get over at the expense of anyone who stands in their way, maintaining composure is vital. Not only does this skill do that but it also allows you to understand the body language and emotions of the characters you encounter and converse with.

This skill also controls the fashion sense of the character, so for those who find it important to look their best, this is the skill to buff. But, take all things in moderation of course, as maintaining that composure at all times can be very stressful. It doesn’t have many severe side effects though, so don’t be afraid of pumping points into it.

Shortcut Keys

These Disco Elysium shortcut keys are applicable for those playing on a Mac and PC. Most of the navigation is done with the mouse, but there are some useful keys that will help you speed things up.

  • Tab – highlights the interactive items on the game. These can be anything from clues, clothing, and loots. Make use of this often to avoid missing anything from any location.
  • Space – lets you activate your Thought Cabinet instantly. This will save you time especially when your character is moving around and you don’t want to interrupt your movements.
  • Number pad – can be used to select an option during dialogues.


This is a quick and simple bit of advice: Save right when you gain control of your character. You can do so by hitting Escape, and then selecting “Save Game.”

Without spoiling how, you can actually die right at the beginning of the game if you make a wrong choice in your disheveled hotel room. Especially if you invested time into creating your own build, you may not want to redo it all over again because you managed to kill yourself in the first five minutes.

Make A Lot Of Saves

As it was in the classic RPGs of old, it’s advisable to make several save files in Disco Elysium. While reloading isn’t encouraged during a player’s first run through the game, having a save file to go back to after seeing the ending will let a player make different choices to bring about different outcomes.

Hold Tab to Highlight Objects

Disco Elysium feels just like like those classic point-and-click adventure games, with important items of interest scattered throughout each screen. Instead of wildly clicking around to see what you can interact with, hold the Tab key on your keyboard to highlight objects that you can manipulate or people you can talk to.

People and objects alike will glow green if you can interact with them. As you can see in the screenshot above, you can’t speak to everyone. The highlighting makes it clear who is a person of interest and who isn’t.

Holding Tab is also a great way to make sure you don’t miss any subtle clues or hard-to-spot items.


Unlike other role-playing games where you might take damage in physical fights, most of what hurts you in Disco Elysium is verbal. There is no traditional combat in the game. Instead, intense encounters take place in an exchange of thoughts, questions, insults, and more. Discussions can hurt your mind and body.

While you can still lose health by kicking trash cans or sitting on uncomfortable seats, your Morale can also take damage. Depending on how your character is built, you may have more Health than Morale points (or vice versa). Having more health means you can take more risks by trying to slam doors open or use your physical strength to overcome more difficult conversations. Morale gives you more fortitude to withstand verbal barbs or an embarrassing gaffe in a conversation.

To heal, you need to buy certain drugs at Frittte, the oddly named drugstore next to the hotel where you start the game.

There’s no traditional inventory screen to use those items. Instead, the UI displays how many healing items you have for either stat on the bottom left of your screen. The bars represent the capacity of each form of health, both physical and mental, and the numbers represent how many healing items you have for each. Click on the numbers to regain any missing bars.

Redoing White Checks

Like a traditional RPG, Disco Elysium makes use of checks for certain scenarios based on your 24 skills.

Dialogue options or ways to interact with the world sometimes rely on your skills to determine whether or not you can do something. The level of your skills, discoveries you’ve made, or even things you’ve said previously have an effect on checks. You’ll see your likelihood of succeeding and the skill used when you hover over the appropriate dialogue option.

When you’re asked to make a check, the game will do an invisible dice roll and use your skill levels and other modifiers to try and beat an unseen number. If you pass the check, you’ll get the opportunity to say or do something that you wouldn’t normally be able to do. This system adds some fluidity to the story, as your unique skill levels and what you’ve done so far can affect what you can do throughout the story.

If the game says a check is a White Check, that means you can retry it later in the game if you fail it. Checks will have a higher likelihood of succeeding if you have a high level in its required skill or you’ve uncovered other factors that would increase its success.

You can only do Red Checks once, so be careful when trying them. If the success rate is low, try leveling up the skill it requires or try to discover other things that might increase the likelihood of beating it.

Keep Track Of White Checks

Disco Elysium has two types of dice-based skill checks — red and white. Red checks can only be attempted once, locking the player out if they fail, whereas white checks can be retried, but only after the player has taken some action to increase their odds of passing. Helpfully, the game tracks the white checks that a player can retry in the in-game map. It’s a good idea to return to white checks after leveling or learning some new information, as they often open up new plot threads to pursue.

Thought Cabinet

Whenever you level up, you get the option to add another point to a skill. However, that’s not the only way to increase your stats.

Since your character has lost all sense of who they are, certain ideas in conversation might conjure up an idea in their mind. Those new thoughts go into the Thought Cabinet. Ideas in the Thought Cabinet do nothing on their own. However if you unlock a slot in the Thought Cabinet using a skill point, you can begin ruminating on new thoughts.

Each new thought first begins as a problem. When a thought is still a Problem, you can put it into a free slot to internalize it. Once that process begins, each thought will start its unique countdown while offering a different, temporary buff or debuff to one of your skills.

The countdown uses the game’s timer to show you how long it will take to internalize it, usually taking a few in-game hours to complete. After you internalize a thought, you gain its solution. Those solutions offer a permanent buff to one or more skills across the four ability categories.

Internalized ideas in the Thought Cabinet eventually create the unique version of the main character’s inner self that you build. Those thoughts may influence some of the things the character might say in dialogue, and buffs further improve the skills the character has, which also influence what they can say or know.


Debuffs gained from the Thought Cabinet or items you wear can lower certain stats. Surprisingly, one effect that’s never fully explained is that you can actually lower stats to zero. One of the biggest impacts this has is on a particular stat: Perception.

If your Perception skill drops to zero either because of an idea in the Thought Cabinet or piece of clothing you’re wearing, your character can’t recognize objects they can interact with.

In fact, if your Perception drops to zero, you may find yourself being able to enter into a room through a door, but unable to recognize that same door as a way to get back out of a room — leaving you stuck. If you hold down Tab to highlight interactive objects, some doors or other key items won’t get highlighted anymore because your Perception is so low.

If you notice this happening, you may just need to put on a new article of clothing or choose to forget a thought that lowered your Perception. Keep in mind that forgetting a thought costs a skill point.

What to Do When Stuck?

Speaking of mistakes, getting stuck in Disco Elysium is inevitable. Just like real detectives get stuck in their cases, you will hit a dead-end at times. When that happens, your Journal will be your best friend. The best thing to do is to go back to your journal and read the information again on each quest. You can access your journal by clicking on the notebook icon on the lower right. Review each task and see which ones you can go back to that may offer clues for your main quest.

Pro tip: your journal has a Map that will show you the skill and dice checks that you failed. See which checks you can retake and try to do them again. They may help you progress in other tasks whether they’re for main or side quests.

Side Quests

Depending on how you distributed your skill points for your character, you might find that it’s impossible at first to investigate the dead body that’s central to the game’s story. Thankfully, Disco Elysium has dozens of side quests to take on, many of which will help you level up, gain new ideas for your Thought Cabinet, and may get you closer to figuring out what’s going on.

Don’t shy away from side quests as they are all opportunities to travel across the entire map, learn more about the world around you, and discover crucial clues about the case. Thankfully your victim isn’t going anywhere and you have several days of in-game time to get to the bottom of the mysterious murder.

While it’s not clear which side quests are ultimately relevant to the murder, many of them provide much needed context to solve what seems like a simple case. Talk to everyone about everything. Once you’ve learned more about the case, go back to people you’ve spoken to before to see if any of the knowledge that you’ve acquired opens up new dialogue options.

Time Matters

You might have noticed the clock in the bottom-right corner of your screen. This marks the time of day in Disco Elysium — and it might not work how you expect. The timer progresses any time you interact with objects, your subconscious, or other people. It’s not an exact science, but you usually spend about one minute for every 1-3 dialogue options. The clock does not progress in real-time!

Time is a major factor in the game, however. You need to reach a certain amount of progress in the main murder case before a certain in-game day. That shouldn’t be a problem. You actually have a ton of time to work with in the grand scheme of things. Time of day is the bigger factor. You will receive positive and negative modifiers to certain skill checks based on when you do things during the day. Some leads will become inaccessible if you wait too long. Kim Kitsuragi, your partner, won’t be around to help you very late at night.

Walking around does not advance time. Neither does picking up most things (like cash and clothes). You’re completely free to look around as much as you like. Just keep remember whenever someone — or something — warns you a clue won’t be around forever!

Don’t Forget Your Tools

Certain environmental interactions are only possible if the player has the right tool on hand. For example, a crowbar might be necessary to open certain crates, and a plastic bag will allow the player to pick up objects that they wouldn’t otherwise have access to.

Garbage Bag

Very early in Disco Elysium — almost immediately after you start the game — you can acquire a yellow plastic bag. It’s to the west of the hostel, next to an unnamed NPC on some stairs by the waterfront. He won’t speak to you, but you can pick up the sack right next to him. This is an incredibly useful item! It’s a “tool” you can equip in one hand like the flashlight or prybar. Except it comes with the added benefit of highlighting new items in the world while you hold it.

These are “tare”: recyclable bottles and cans. Interact with them while you have the bag equipped to collect them! From there on out, you can visit the Frittte (a convenience store to the east of the Whirling-in-Rags hostel) to deposit them. Each bottle is worth 10 cents. That’s not much, but it does add up when you can collect dozens and dozens of bottles throughout Disco Elysium. Collecting the tare also doesn’t cause time to progress. There’s literally no reason not to drop them off!

Talk to Everyone

Dialogue is at the very core of the Disco Elysium experience, and there’s no such thing as an unimportant NPC. Even the characters that don’t seem plot-critical at first will have interesting things to say, and the player is consistently rewarded with experience points for engaging in conversation.

Apartment Building

Once again, near the very start of Disco Elysium, you can find an apartment building on the northwest side of town. The entrance is an unmarked doorway just above the docks where you meet Joyce. This apartment building is tied to a number of side quests throughout the game — such as Cuno’s and “Martin Martinaise’s.” More immediately, though, it’s also chock full of cash you can swipe from rooms and hideaways. It’s a great source of money early in the game with pretty much zero consequences.


Speaking of Joyce: make sure you meet with her. She’s at the docks to the west of Whirling-in-Rags. You can find her stationed on a little boat throughout most of the day. Much like the garbage bag and the apartment building, she’s a stellar source of early game cash. She will give you 130 bucks (a sum that’s not too steep, not too little) to pay off your damages at the hostel. It’s mostly without consequence. Taking her money will be a detriment to certain skill checks when you converse with her. However, you can circumvent some of the problems by finding your badge.

Hang Onto Skill Points

The vast, vast majority of skill checks in Disco Elysium are colored white. That means you can try them more than once. Although you need to spend a skill point on said skill to unlock any failed checks. That means it’s almost never worth dumping points into a skill before you make a white check. No matter what, there is always a tiny chance you will succeed. The odds bottom out at three percent (about the chances of two dice rolling sixes, which is always a success in this game). I’ve had the game roll in my favor this way at least once!

Instead it’s better to back out of a conversation before performing a white check. Make sure you don’t have any clothes equipped that lower your necessary skill. Make sure you do wear any clothes that can give you a bonus. Then make the initial check. If it doesn’t succeed, then you can consider pumping a skill point into it. That way you get multiple chances right away — with better odds on the second roll.

Look for Other Ways to Unlock Checks

Here’s another reason to keep your skill points: there are hidden ways to unlock white checks. Talking to relevant people, finishing certain thoughts, and discovering clues can all better your odds of succeeding a check. You can tell what things affect your chances by hovering over the white check. It will say things like “talked to X person,” or “gave Y person a hat.” These don’t just add to your odds of succeeding. They can also organically unlock white checks without needing to spend skill points!

Check Your Thoughts

Speaking of thoughts, make sure you keep an eye on them. They’re a limited resource in Disco Elysium — in that you can only have a certain number equipped at one time. But not all thoughts are created equal! Some provide flat bonuses. Others lower some of your skills as long as you have them equipped, but provide other benefits, as well. What you need at any one point might change significantly. And it can be more cost-effective to spend one skill point to remove a thought with multiple negatives. That gives you multiple points back in those skills and opens up a slot for another thought you might want to inject. Removing complete thoughts is permanent, however! So, uh, think carefully.

Breaking Locks

You may encounter doors or containers that are locked. Depending on how you built your character, you may not have the skill to unlock them without special tools. You can find tools in your partner officer’s car and equip them to help you break locks

Go Across the River on Wednesday

There’s a bridge across the water far to the south of where you start the game. It’s inaccessible at first. However, starting on Wednesday morning, you can cross the bridge into a little fishing village. Absolutely do that! The coastal town is home to a ton of goodies and useful things. There’s tare, raw cash laying around, a free place to sleep every night, and other… more spoiler-y things you can choose to uncover. The journey is absolutely worth it.

You Can Stay Up Awful Late

Kim won’t stay up with you for 24 hours straight. The good detective likes to be in bed before midnight. On the other hand, your character can stay up till the wee hours of the morning. That’s a great time to get things done! Most in-game conversations will benefit from having Kim around to bounce ideas off. However, there are a handful of things that become easier if you’re alone. You can still collect items in the world or pass time on the bench (to progress thoughts) without Kim, too. Finally, since most in-game checks are repeatable, you can always come back with your partner in the morning and try again with his help.

Clothing and Accessories

As you get more cash, you will be able to buy some clothes and accessories. You can also loot them along the way. Each piece of clothing adds stats to your character. Clothes also help increase your success rate in skill and dice checks. Make it a point to dress as fancily as you can!

Where can you find new outfits? You can find your initial clothing in the clutter of your hotel room. As you progress and explore the world, try looking through alleys, shops, containers, and other unusual places. Try on hats, gloves, ties, new pairs of shoes, and find the fit that matches your playstyle.

How to Get Cash

Speaking of cash, you are probably the most broke detective you’ve ever known. You need to pay for some damages you’ve done while you were drunk, and your hotel room won’t pay for itself. You also need money to get new clothing and accessories to improve your skills. The way to do that early in the game is to collect trash. That’s right, trash: find used bottles that you can sell. To collect the bottles, you need a plastic bag that a lot of players don’t even know where to find.

You can find one in the plaza right across from the book shop. To sell the bottles, all you have to do is deposit them in a vending machine. You will have to look for a convenience store that has one. It will then dispense cash in exchange for the bottles.

Talk to These People

As your luck would have it, it’s not just your memory that you’ve lost. You will also find out that you’re missing your badge and your gun! You won’t find out where they are right away but talking to these people will give you enough clues. Remember, this Disco Elysium guide will only walk you through getting started so remember these strategies as you move along.

  • The bartender/manager – some questionable events have happened in this hotel. The manager will tell you what impression people have of you and how they might react. This gives you an idea of strategizing how you want to approach the town folks.
  • The police department – you may want to make some calls especially with your badge and gun missing. This will not be a pleasant call, but they can connect you to a woman who will give you an insight into what you have really done the previous nights.
  • The woman on the phone – the police can connect you to the woman whose name pops up on your dialogue box while you’re talking to them. The bartender also mentions her. She will tell you what you did to your gun.
  • The gardener – depending on how you’ve built your character, you may be easily repulsed by the dead body and might fail the skill check to investigate it further. The gardener by the hotel’s backdoor has some ammonia that can help with that.
  • Joyce – she’s located somewhere near the docks and can provide you with substantial cash to cover some of the things you need to pay.

Investigate the Body

On your first day, you will find out from the NPCs that the body of the victim is hanging on the tree right outside the hotel. You will probably not head there immediately because you’re looking for clues as to what happened. That is the right move, but don’t spend too much time talking to everyone. Head to the bar where you will meet a key character that will help you with this case. Head straight to the body after meeting that character. Time is of the essence so do whatever it takes to get all the clues you can get from that crime scene. You may have to ask for some ammonia from the gardener to help you not throw up while looking at the body.

Succeeding in Skill and Dice Checks

In this Disco Elysium guide, you will also learn how to succeed in skill and dice checks. Your success in some of the game’s activities involves rolling dice. When learning how to play Disco Elysium, it’s important to remember that your skill points affect your dice rolls. If you are proficient in a skill related to the check, you have higher chances of rolling the required number. These dice rolls are invisible to you. If you pass the check, you will be given extra action and be able to use your unique abilities.

There are two types of checks:

  • White checks – allow you to reroll later in the game.
  • Red checks – can only be done once.

Building Your Detective Personality

As mentioned in this Disco Elysium guide, choices matter a lot. Each time you interact with an NPC, your responses dictate your personality as a detective. You can choose to be a respectful cop or become the most annoying and indecent cop that town has ever seen. This, of course, affects how they respond to you and whether they will cooperate with you or not. However, playing the good cop will not always get you far. There are times when you need to intimidate people to get the information you need. You also need to command respect as a detective so being passive all the time is far from ideal.

Sometime through the game, you may see a popup that will ask you to confirm if this is the personality you would like to take on. You can say no to that if you want to build your character more. It will appear again later, asking you to make a choice.

Don’t Expect a Perfect Gameplay

When learning how to play Disco Elysium, it’s important to remember that this is a story-driven RPG. This is not a game where you aim for the highest score and finish the game as quickly as you can. The point of RPGs, even online ones (MMORPGs), is to allow players to explore the world within the game and the story it was built upon.

Go roleplay the personality of the cop that you aim for your character! Make choices according to what a cop with those character traits would do and not just because it seems right. Don’t worry about making mistakes or missing some clues. If you follow the tips in this Disco Elysium guide, you will be off to a good start and avoid fatal mistakes later in the game.

Increase Your Odds

Completing the internalization of some thoughts can also give you an advantage on your checks. While this does not bypass the rolls as does the above tip, you will have ultimately higher odds of succeeding.

Some actions also increase your chances of succeeding. Remember, choices extremely matter in Disco Elysium. You can find out which actions affect your chances by hovering over the checkmark in the dialogue box. It may say “talked to this person” or “gave this item to that person.” You will then see a banner or popup that tells you if doing so increases your chances of succeeding. In some cases, these actions may even unlock white checks without you having to use a skill point!

Be Thorough With the Small Circles

At the beginning of the game, the short tutorial will tell you that interacting or clicking the little circles gives you clues. The problem is there are way too many of them and most of them aren’t very useful. However, some of these circles are gold! So as annoying as it can be, it’s better to be thorough when investigating a scene. There are even times when they can complete thought internalization instantly. They can also make objects appear that weren’t visible before you click on the circle.

Clicking on some circles may also sometimes give you extra experience points (XP). While it only gives you one point per click, the fact that there are so many circles or bubbles means that they stack up and eventually become worth the trouble. One XP can also make a huge difference when you’re aiming to gain a skill point.

Connect the Dots No Matter How Small

You’re a detective, and your job is to connect the dots—big and small. There are times when you would interact with an object that seems like a waste of time. It may even cause you damage. But later on, you may find that there is something in there that’s relevant to your case. Just like a real detective, you sometimes have to go back to a scene you’ve already looked at in case you missed something. Follow your instincts and always look at your journal and inventory. Why is that object there? Is it really just a random thing in a random location? You will be surprised how things are intricately connected. You just have to use deduction, common sense, and trial and error to piece them together.

However, it’s also good to go in blind and try something out of the ordinary without a solid basis every now and then. This is what your detective instinct is for. If something feels like it’s connected to something, don’t ignore that feeling. In real life, your instincts are there for a reason and serve the same purpose. The key is to balance it with evidence and not rely too heavily on one or the other.

Go Back to Places That Were Previously Inaccessible

Some areas like the river down south are inaccessible at first. This just means that there is some other task that you need to complete before you can access it. Take note of these places and come back to them time and again. The game will not give you a clue whether it’s already accessible or not; you would have to find out for yourself. And since time is important in Disco Elysium, this is also an important factor.

The river that we mentioned, for example, will only be accessible on a Wednesday. Cross the bridge over that river and it will lead you to a small town where you can find lots of loot and useful items to purchase. You may even find cash and free lodging. Though this Disco Elysium guide is meant for the start of the gameplay, this particular tip will prove useful to you through the end.

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