Hades is a rogue-like dungeon crawler where you defy the god of death as you hack and slash your way out of the Underworld of Greek myth. It’s never the same experience twice: Each time you play, you’ll combine the divine might of various Olympian gods with your own, brave nefarious new challenges, and unravel more of the story featuring our award-winning art, audio, and narrative.
Hades is a living game in active development: Expect regular updates introducing new features, events, characters, weapons, powers, environments, and more. We think developing Hades in Early Access is key to making it the best game it can be, which is our goal.
Here are our 7 Hades top tips:
- Dash-strike is your bread and butter
- Flat damage is your friend
- Prioritise Daedalus Hammers
- Choose your Mirror Upgrades carefully
- Save your Coin until near the surface
- Don’t underestimate Armored enemies
- Level up your Keepsakes
Dash-strike is your bread and butter
Dash-strike is the single most powerful base move in Hades, and it’s something that benefits every single weapon – even ranged weapons. You can dash-strike simply by dashing once or twice, and immediately attacking. Depending on your weapon, the dash-strike might deal more damage than a regular attack or it might offer some other benefit (in the case of the bow, it shortens the wind-up time before your charge shot). Additionally, some Boons and upgrades specifically apply to dash-striking, which can quickly lead to this bread-and-butter skill skyrocketing in power.
Mastery of dash-strike also makes you extremely flexible and mobile, able to transition from dodging an enemy to skewering another in record time. Unless you’ve got good reason, you should treat dash-strike as your primary attack throughout every run.
Flat damage is your friend
As with most roguelites, you’ll get a great many opportunities in a single run of Hades to choose upgrades for Zagreus and his weapons. And as with most roguelites, flat damage is more or less the best thing to plump for in each case.
Hades is divided into five primary realms, starting with Tartarus, Asphodel, and Elysium. Each time you move to the next realm, enemies get significantly hardier, which means you really need to keep up with the curve by increasing your damage potential. Notice in my run footage above how I’ve opted for maximum damage at every opportunity with the Boons I choose.
Prioritise Daedalus Hammers
Daedalus Hammers are the single most powerful enhancements you’ll find in a Hades run. You’ll often find two in a run: one in Tartarus, and one in Elysium. These Hammers upgrade an aspect of your current weapon in a very major way which can shape the rest of your playthrough.
Daedalus Hammers should never be passed up for a different room reward. When you’ve got the choice, never opt for any kind of boon or resource. You need those Hammer upgrades if you want to stick to the flat damage rule I mentioned above.
Choose your Mirror Upgrades carefully
Progression in Hades isn’t limited to per-run upgrades. There is also a very deep metaprogression system in the form of the Mirror of Night in your room at home. As time goes on you’ll be able to unlock more Mirror upgrades with keys, and then level up those upgrades using the Darkness you accrue with each run. You’ll also find after your first few runs that each upgrade in the Mirror is actually a pair of upgrades that you can swap between before embarking on your next run.
The right Mirror upgrades can make you far more powerful even after just your first handful of runs. Prioritise the following upgrades at first:
- Greater Reflex (4th slot, 1st option)
- Death Defiance (3rd slot, 1st option)
- Chthonic Vitality (2nd slot, 1st option)
- Fiery Presence (1st slot, 2nd option)
- High Confidence (8th slot, 2nd option)
- Golden Touch (7th slot, 2nd option)
- Family Favourite (9th slot, 2nd option)
…And then start investing in the final three Mirror upgrades. Don’t bother with Cast, it’s near-useless with the damage output you’ll have with this build.
Don’t underestimate Armored enemies
Armored enemies are the true danger of the Underworld. If an enemy is not covered in this armor, you can stun-lock them by hitting them repeatedly with whatever weapon you’re carrying. This is an integral part of Hades’s combat system. But armored enemies cannot be interrupted until you break their armor.
Almost every enemy in every region of Hades has an armored equivalent, and they should definitely be prioritised in a fight. Not only are they more dangerous for being uninterruptible, they also have a greater health pool and upgraded attack types. In higher numbers, they can be absolutely devastating. So don’t underestimate them, not even when it looks like you’ve got a winning build going.
Save your Coin until near the surface
It’s very tempting to spend any Coin you gain as early as possible – especially when the game plants a shop in front of you before most major boss battles. But you should try to resist this urge, because you’ll need that Coin later on.
Once you get up to the Styx, the main room to which you’ll keep returning has a particularly large shop filled with some very powerful bonuses – strong Boons, double-strength Poms of Power, and so on. This is the time to spend all that Coin you’ve earnt, because those things don’t come cheap.
Obviously you should spend Coin in a life-or-death situation to heal yourself when you’re at death’s door, but otherwise try not to spend too much until you’re nearer the surface.
Level up your Keepsakes
Each neutral character in the Underworld and each Olympian you come into contact with has a Keepsake they can trade you in exchange for their first bottle of Nectar. These Keepsakes offer strong bonuses which persist throughout an entire run, and they can be upgraded the more you use them.
The two best Keepsakes to level up at first are:
- Old Spiked Collar (from Cerberus)
- Adds +50 Health to your Life Total when fully upgraded
- Evergreen Acorn (from Eurydice)
- In the final encounter in each Underworld region, take 0 damage the first 5 times foes hit you when fully upgraded.