How to Conquer The Underworld of Hades

After Supergiant Games announced development of Hades II earlier this year, it’s the perfect time to revisit its predecessor, Hades. But the roguelite genre can be challenging for newcomers and veterans alike. Here are some tips for successfully conquering the Underworld of Hades.

Turn on God Mode: When you start Hades, you have the option to turn God Mode on or off. God Mode offers a percentage of damage resistance every time the player game-overs. On paper, that may sound like it’s a form of cheating that makes the game easier, but it’s not. The more times you game-over, you will gain additional resistance to damage, though it caps at 80%. As you build up your abilities, the damage resistance will enable later runs to go faster and more efficiently. It helps, but it doesn’t make the game easy, either. Though if you do start the game with it turned off, don’t worry; you can turn it back on if you wish at any time in the menu.

Get Darkness rewards: In each run through the Underworld, you have the option to select what your reward in the next room will be. Invest in Darkness early on, as you need it for the Mirror of Night to gain additional lives and abilities, improve your stats and damage, and more. In Tartarus, if you encounter Sisyphus, he can give you Darkness as one of his three rewards; always take it if you can since you need a lot of Darkness to improve your stats and abilities.

Image credit: Supergiant Games

Become friends with Skelly: When you finish a run, you always return to the House of Hades, where a variety of characters can interact with Zagreus. You can give characters Nectar to increase your friendship with them and get a unique Keepsake. Skelly is a skeleton who resides in the training area just outside Zagreus’ room and his Keepsake, called the Lucky Tooth, grants an extra life and is extremely valuable in the early game. Make sure to give him Nectar you find so you can have an extra life on your runs.

Equip your favorite God Boon item: Each player will have their favorite God Boons, though I usually recommend Athena for the early game. She’s the first god you encounter when you start and her abilities are primarily defensive-based. Her Divine Dash is among one of my favorite abilities in the game as it enables you to deflect incoming attacks when you dash, and since you should dash constantly in combat, it’s a great way to send enemy missiles and attacks back at them for some extra damage while protecting yourself. Each god gives a Keepsake that will boost their likelihood of appearing on a run, so if you need a specific god to help, equip their Keepsake.

Image credit: Supergiant Games

Always go for Double Boon rooms: Sometimes when you’re on a run, you may encounter a room that has two god boon icons; always go for them. While the fights in these rooms can be challenging, if you win you effectively get two god boons in one, so you don’t want to pass them up.

Find your favorite weapon and upgrade it: Zagreus has several weapons he can choose from to fight his way out of Tartarus. You can upgrade each one with Titan’s Blood, which adds to their strength and abilities. Find your favorite weapon and give it upgrades when you can, as Titan’s Blood is a rare item that becomes increasingly harder to get as the game goes on. My personal favorite is Excalibur; the sword is extremely powerful, it has incredible range, and it can generate a field where incoming enemy attacks are slowed down.

Upgrade the House of Hades and the Underworld: You can work with the contractors to upgrade the House of Hades as well as adding new rooms to the Underworld. Invest in the Fountain rooms so you have a chance to take a break from fighting and heal up; you can add a Fountain room to Tartarus, Asphodel, and Elysium to improve your chances.

Try to fight the Bull of Minos mini-boss in Elysium: There’s always an element of chance and randomness in a run, but occasionally you can run into the Bull of Minos, Asterius, as a mini-boss in Elysium. If you can trigger this fight with him early, it will reduce the amount of HP he has in the boss fight later alongside Theseus. I’d also encourage working to take out Asterius first due to his mobility and quick, ranged attacks, and then you can focus down Theseus afterward.

Image credit: Supergiant Games

Finally, try to remember that while a “failed” run can be frustrating, it’s not a bad thing. Hades ingeniously ties its story and characters around the death mechanic, so even if you lose a run and have to go back to the House of Hades, there’s still something in it for you. You can interact with members of the household, boost your abilities with Darkness, and acquire new Keepsakes to make each run that much easier to complete. The more runs you do, the more practice you get and the better you will be. I wish you all the best of luck as you fight to escape the Underworld!

These are just some of the tips and tricks that can be used to conquer the Underworld, but what other tips would you recommend? Let us know in the comments, or join us at the Boss Rush Discord!

Featured Image: Supergiant Games

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