Hades - by Supergiant Games (Bastion, Transistor, Pyre)

No I don't think there's any change to the keepsakes after you've formed a bond other than the little cute icon.

I think they were probably looking for a way to show you which characters you had formed a bond with, and realized that the keepsake screen was already a handy visual list of all of them so why not put little tags there?

I think, if you at least liked Bastion, you'll probably really like Hades. If Transistor and Pyre didn't work for you, you'll probably still like Hades. Not sure how people who hated Bastion and really dug Transistor and Pyre are going to feel about it though.

Anyway, after playing Hades obsessively for the past couple of weeks, I'm getting a little burned out. I'm probably around 70 runs in. I've only beat Hades twice, both times around 20-30 runs in. I'm getting a little frustrated. Part of that has to do with me trying out lots of fated choices, instead of sticking with optimal strategies.

Athena's deflect dash seems like the most powerful boon in the game.

polq37 wrote:

Athena's deflect dash seems like the most powerful boon in the game.

I've not checked the stats, but I reckon I've taken that boon in about half of my successful runs.

One thing that helped me get more clears was thinking about synergies between weapons and boons. For example, Dionysus' hangover effect stacking up to 5 times. If you take that on your attack with a fast attack weapon like the rail, you can let the DoT do most of your damage for you. In this way I would start planning runs... Right, so I'll take the Dionysus keepsake. For the hammer I'm looking for the mod that means I never have to reload. I'll then also look for another curse to pair with hangover to get the damage boost from having two curses active. Maybe that's looking for Aphrodite to put Weak on my special, or something to chill from Demeter. So take one of their keepsakes when you leave Tartarus. Stuff like that. I found my win rate increased massively when I planned ahead rather than randomly picking what seems good as I go. (Not saying that's what you're doing polq, buts it's what I was doing when I was struggling). All that said, there's still plenty of fun to be had by just embracing the chaos and not planning at all!

I made my first escape with the hidden aspect of Stygius, and ... holy hell, I love its ability.

Spoiler:

A damage reducing aura is good enough on its own, but it slows projectiles too! Really good synergy with Athena, there.

kergguz wrote:

One thing that helped me get more clears was thinking about synergies between weapons and boons.

I totally agree. Doing this helped me immensely too. Also, I started playing much better when I realized that it was often good to pursue boons from 2 or 3 gods, rather than go scattershot. Many of the boons have excellent synergy with each other. Like how Demeter's crystal beam gets much better if you can make the beams chill your foes, and better still if you get that boon that does a blast of damage to any foe with 10 stacks of chill.

I too am a recent convert who experienced some frustration early playing this game. Something about how the percentage-based boons versus the on-hit effects never really clicked with me. I also spent 10 consecutive early games grinding the spear and not unlocking weapons.

This selection of tutorials by a guy named Haelian helped me wrap my head around how boons, hammers, and aspects all interact. Without getting too min-maxy in his presentation, he lays out options and discusses hidden aspects of the options that aren't immediately apparent. If you're having trouble grokking a weapon, I strongly suggest checking out the relevant video.

After I got my first win, I made the decision to play whatever weapon featured the 20% darkness bonus at the lowest incomplete heat setting. I just wanted to learn the weapons and have some fun. In doing so, I seem to have hit a bit of a hot streak that I couldn't help subtle-bragging/sharing :

Spoiler:

IMAGE(https://i.imgur.com/Qt3M8ci.jpg)

Two of my wins have come with Demeter's cast fully upgraded. I just throw those guys down and watch the world burn. Being able to stunlock the Satyrs and Rats with fast continuous attacks in the last area can make life much much easier too.

My second-most-recent win featured Demeter's cast, upgraded with the Demeter / Artemis duo power. It makes the crystal beams swing around much faster to track enemies. I think I also had an extra cast from Hermes and bought a second extra cast from the Well, right before the final battle. The damage output was ridiculous.

I also had the spear, with the aspect of Achilles, and then a speed buff from Hermes. Used those to dart around the battlefield and let my crystal beams do all the work.

I'm at 30 completions now in 92 runs. Since the opportunities you get for Boons is so varied I go for three things:

1. Two status effects to gain the 40% bonus damage from the mirror ability Privileged Status, preferably between main and special attacks. For instance if I get an early Zeus I want electric bolts on one of my weapons and I'll try for another Zeus to get Jolted later on. Between that I'll want either Demeter's cold, Aphrodite's weak, Dionysus hangover or Ares Doom. Any combination will do but I avoid Artemis, Athena, Poseidon on my main or special because then I'm usually not offered a status effect on that attack anymore.

2. A damaging dashing ability. Athena's Reflection is the best, Poseidon's push is excellent if I have a longer range weapon. Aphrodite's weak is good if I can't find a status effect for main or special. I find Demeter's cold wave ahead of my dash rarely hits and isn't worth it.

3. An early Chaos bonus to damage for main or special attack. This is the best way to add a lot of damage to any of your status effect boons.

Other boons between those are icing on the cake - Calls, Hermes faster attack or dodge chance, Artemis critical that's not tied to attack/special only or seeking arrow. As long as it doesn't take over my main or special attack without a status effect. I find if I start a run with Artemis or Athena as my main/special attack bonus I rarely get two status effects to activate Privileged Status and my run is harder.

Finally! 60 tries, no god mode.

I'm loving this game. I'm terrible at it, but loving it. Using God mode in spurts but not all the time.

The other day I had a successful run with the shield, and discovered an excellent combo. I kind of lucked into this, as I was basically just trying to collect legendary and duo boons that I haven't found yet.

Vengeful Mood: (1 of several Ares powers / 1 of several Zeus powers / 1 "Revenge" ability) - This turns Zag's revenge abilities into an aura that pulses every 3 seconds and auto-applies the effect. So, I stacked the following abilities:

Curse of Vengeance: Doom every 3 seconds

Frozen Touch: Low damage + 10 stacks of Chill every 3 seconds

Wave of Dispair: Low damage + Weak every 3 seconds

Curse of Longing: Doom effects continuously strike weak foes.

This combo was amazing. Applying these 3 skills automatically also got me the 40% damage boost from privileged status, which mrwynd mentioned above, and which I also find crucial. And it was even better with the shield. I could literally stand in front of the final boss' rotating fire beam attack, and block it, and watch him suffer.

Rolled credits shortly after beating out with all weapons. What a fun ride! Thank you GOTY thread for putting this on my radar. I now have my brother hooked as he plays on my family share! Woo!

I don't think I'm going to get the rush and urgency to climb end game. Other than the "worthless trinkets," what other end game goals have you all set for yourself?

I'd like to host the party that's now referenced on my fated list. If you keep playing past the credits, you'll see it. That would require, essentially, having strong bonds with a lot of characters.

And, even though I've escaped 15 or so times, I still haven't actually started a romance with anyone. I'd like to see those storylines play out.