When starting out, combat in this game can feel like you’re just getting thrown around constantly by the enemies. Knocked down, locked into grab attacks, with no way to respond. You actually have plenty of ways to respond, and some important decisions to make during combat. Read below…
Tips to Combat
This guide contains important combat mechanics i figured out or looked up during my playthrough that were neglected in the tutorial.
By no means comprehensive, just what i know so far.
In the tutorial you are told how to parry, a key mechanic without which combat is just ♥♥♥ and ball torture.
It’s introduction is quite brief and the execution is very finnicky.
Parryable attacks are indicated by a red glow on the enemy at the start of their attack animation. Some enemies also have attacks without an indicator, which can also be parried by reading their animation alone.
Yellow attacks are not parriable, see the dodging section.
A parry is executed by tapping the Left stick towards the attacking enemy and at the same time tapping X(similar to the Dark Souls kick). Raiden should enter a blocking stance, which you can hold for a while by holding X.
The L-Stick tilt has to be precise, you can also retry the input if Raiden doesn’t enter the blocking stance. When spamming block, make sure to also return the stick to neutral each time.
This should block the attack and allow you to counterattack.
You can also perfect parry by waiting out the animation and only parrying right before the attack actually hits you, Raiden will automatically do a counterattack, dealing massive damage and often opening the enemy up for blade mode. The counterattack has a small range, so it might miss if the enemy is too far away. You can mitigate this by stepping closer to the enemy while waiting for the perfect parry.
Dodging is important mostly for yellow attacks(unparriable) attacks. These are usually grab attacks that you really don’t want to be caught by.
Since you dont have a dodge roll/dash, you simply have to move away from the attack.
After beating the first mission, you can purchase upgrades. Among those are new moves. One is “Defensive Offense”.
Essentially your dodge roll, this move is performed by tapping X+A and a L-Stick direction.
Absolutely essential for staying in the fight and not constantly getting grabbed.
If you do get grabbed and have to mash the stick, the best way i’ve found to do it is letting go of the controller with your left hand and using your palm to go rampage on the stick. However even this does not help against many grab attacks, so it’s best to just not get hit(haha).
Blade mode can be entered at any time by holding LT. X for horizontal slashes, Y for vertical. R-Stick for free aim slashes.
Below your health bar you have an energy bar related to blade mode. It is filled by attacking enemies.
Activating blade mode while the bar is full also activates time-lapse and allows you to dismember enemies, or deal a good amount of damage if you have an opening to stay in blade mode for a while.
The normal cyborg fodder soldiers can be dismembered even at full health(at any time), so make sure to take advantage of that to deal with them quickly.
For most of the stronger enemies you need to take their health down first. If their limbs start glowing blue, that means you can cut them off in blade mode, significantly weakening the enemy.
Some of the fodder soldiers might have a red-glowing arm in blade mode, cutting it off intact gets you some bonus upgrade points.