Hades – Beginners Guide

Each run leads to getting just a little bit further ahead than before, but these build-ups can be maximized with the wisdom of those who have the benefit of hindsight. Veteran gamers still have a lot to say about what new players should know. And new players should listen to the advice that will make one of the best games of all time even better.

Guide for New Players

Study The Controls

The control scheme of Hades is intuitive but requires players to have great hand-eye coordination to maximize their damage output (and defensive maneuvers). A beginner’s first run through Hades is likely to end early, so take that opportunity to get a feel for how Zagreus moves and attacks.

In later areas of the game, it becomes vitally important to be aware of one’s position, especially when faced with a swarm of enemies, and to be able to control Zagreus even amid an overwhelming battle. Practice against Skelly to learn some things many players don’t know they can do.

Study The Opposition

Upon running into a new opponent, stop attacking completely. Focus only on dodging and watching. Keep observing until their movements and attacks become predictable.

Hades can easily turn into a bullet-hell type of game. With so many moving pieces on the map, it’s easy to be overwhelmed. But instead of thrashing around, accept a few hits in exchange for watching the shooters. Study their animations so that, next time, Zagreus and dodge or interrupt these attacks. The process makes this an indie game with incredible replay value.

Converse And Exhaust Dialogue With Every Character

One of the things fans of Hades like the most about the game is how personable and fully fleshed out every major character, side character, God, and otherwise is. Every character from the maid Dusa to the God of Gods Zeus is given personality and charm by their amazing voice actors.

Additionally, many events that happen throughout the game, and indeed the progression of the story, are tied to the player having talked to specific people. The gaming world has embraced Greek mythology and veteran gamers know to appreciate its inclusion.

Unlock Greater Reflex From The Mirror Quickly

The most important upgrade from the Mirror of Night that players should unlock first is Greater Reflex. Normally, Zagreus can only dodge once, and although there is some amount of invincibility frames it’s not quite enough to get out of especially harsh attacks. Yet this can eventually be one of the best dashes in all of gaming.

Greater Reflex simply gives Zagreus the ability to dash twice instead of once. It might sound like a boring upgrade, but it’s arguably the most useful out of all possible Mirror of Night upgrades. The game is too fast-paced to be realistically won without this upgrade.

Unlock Chamber Upgrades Before Anything Else

When the player eventually unlocks the Contractor for the House of Hades they unlock the ability to make modifications to the hub space. This includes cosmetic upgrades like changing the carpet color as well as gameplay-related upgrades like unlocking the Lounge.

Additionally, players can upgrade the chambers of the Underworld themselves. Unlocking the Fountain room, for example, gives a chance for Zagreus to run across a healing room in a run. It costs some treasure (and sometimes even Diamonds) but these upgrades are the most useful thing for Zagreus to make it further and further through the underworld.

Check In With The Broker After Each Run

It may take a few runs before unlocking the Wretched Broker but when he is unlocked, Zagreus can get rid of the resources that are less useful and turn them into desperately needed items.

Gemstones and Nectar, in particular, will end up being in a surplus. Players can and should dump these for Titan blood and Diamonds every chance they get. In the endgame, gamers always wish they made these trades sooner as they’ll be doing entire runs just to get the chance of more Titan Blood.

Use The “Bonus” Weapon

Eventually, a weapon in the arsenal will be glowing with dark purple energy. Approach it and note the message on the bottom of the screen, offering Zagreus an additional 20% to darkness and gems during the run. Use whichever weapon has this bonus.

It’s true that the highlighted weapon might not be a favorite, but passing up on extra resources isn’t a wise idea. This will help beginners catch up in a hurry, often putting them ahead of the curve for the next run. It’s also good practice.

Master One Aspect Of Each Weapon

Hand in hand with the previous point, players should always feel confident with any weapon. It’s too much to ask that every player be great with every aspect, however. Some aspects are just plain better than others.

Go ahead and play favorites here. The bonus goes to the weapon, not the specific aspect, so play whatever is comfortable. It’s smart to experiment, of course, yet each aspect is perfectly capable of beating the game, so there isn’t a good reason to make a challenge where one doesn’t exist. Use that perfect shield build guilt-free.

Gift Nectar and Ambrosia, Don’t Let It Sit There

Nectar can be used to enhance a player’s relationship status with an NPC by one heart, and it can be given to just about every character throughout the game. Ambrosia, which is earned later on, is used to maximize friendship levels when an NPC is close to having maximum hearts.

It’s a waste to use Nectar for anything except gifting to NPCs, and Ambrosia can be saved up over time to eventually gift as well. When gifting Nectar for the first time, almost every NPC will give Zagreus a gift in return, too.

Don’t Refund Darkness Until All Weapons Are Unlocked

When using the Mirror of Night there is an option to refund all spent Darkness with a certain number of keys. This is useful later on in the game when players can hone in on what kind of upgrades they want to take on, but it’s not worth wasting keys until every one of the Infernal Arms is unlocked.

Infernal Arms are unlocked with a certain number of keys and become available for purchase after a few runs. Unlock all of them before considering using keys to refresh Zagreus’ benefits.

Purchase The Rod of Fishing As Soon As Its Available

The Rod of Fishing is the primary source of Treasure for players past a certain point. It is granted by Poseidon as an aid to Zagreus in his escape from the underworld, and fish caught can be turned into the Butcher in the Lounge for a Treasure reward that differs based on the rarity of the fish.

To even have the ability to unlock this, though, players must have reached the Temple of Styx and must have purchased the Fated List of Minor Prophecies from the contractor.

Fishing Tips

There can only be three fake bobs, so the fourth bob is always real if the first three were fake. Fake bobs have an interval of 2-5 seconds while the real bob has an interval of 1-2 seconds. So if it takes more than 2 seconds, it should be a fake bob. Meaning you should look for the real bob within a short time after you start fishing or within a short time after a previous bob.

Personally, I just look for the white flash above the bobber and ignore the bobber itself. Some players have said they have better success when putting their thumb on the bobber to not get distracted by that, so maybe you could give that a try.

A Perfect Catch means catching a fish within 340ms. Perfect Catches are 50/50 on being a legendary or rare fish. Any other catch is 50/50 on being a rare or common fish.

Choose Resource Doors Over Boon Doors

When first starting out in Hades players have almost nothing to their name – no Darkness, no Keys, no Treasure, and certainly not any Nectar. Throughout the first few runs it’s inevitable that players will die and be brought back to the House of Hades, so it’s not worth avoiding permanent resources over temporary boons.

Boons only last during a run, while resources can’t be lost. They unlock incredibly important things that Zagreus can’t make it through the underworld without – Darkness unlocks talents, Keys unlock weapons, Treasure unlocks Contractor goods, and Nectar benefits relationships. Choose doors with these symbols over them to get a head start on these permanent upgrades.

Keep The Fated List In Mind

For many players, The Fated List is both the first and the last task that needs to be completed in the game. At first, items are checked off so regularly that it feels easy. but eventually, players will need to accomplish goals they wouldn’t ordinarily set out to complete on their own.

Ignoring the checklist will mean doing a lot of unnatural and unpleasant tasks later in the game for outdated rewards. Players who know what to do can knock these out kinetically with each run.

Go With Synergy Over Rarity

While epic and legendary boons are enticing, sometimes they just don’t fit the build as well as a common or rare boon. Don’t be distracted by the pretty colors; go with whatever boon seems to work best. Some builds don’t make as much use of some moves.

Players have to be flexible with their builds already. Forcing Zagreus to use an attack that isn’t part of the usual rotation is a recipe for a bad run and an early death.

Egor Opleuha
About Egor Opleuha 7097 Articles
Egor Opleuha, also known as Juzzzie, is the Editor-in-Chief of Gameplay Tips. He is a writer with more than 12 years of experience in writing and editing online content. His favorite game was and still is the third part of the legendary Heroes of Might and Magic saga. He prefers to spend all his free time playing retro games and new indie games.

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