Comprehensive guide to optimise your build, including explanations on why you want which parts. Recommended to check after your first playthrough, or maybe halfway through that. Targeted at slightly more advanced players, not fresh beginners.
The target audience are people who have begun understanding the basic mechanics of the game; I do not quite pick up everyone at a knowledge level of absolute zero and I will not even list a lot of the available Chips, simply because they are not useful beyond filling up your slots during your first run through E difficulty.
- POW: Power, the energy required to equip Chips, caps at 480 (plus 100 from Energy Recycled)
- Crit: Critical Hit chance, in %, you want this at its cap of 100% to always hit critically
- CHD: Critical Hit Damage, a multiplier that affects critical hits, has no (feasible) cap
- ARP: ARmour Penetration, in %; you want this at its cap of 100% to ignore all enemy armour
- ATK and HP: Attack value and Hitpoints, respectively, both cap at 9999
About the Purple Chip, Soul Cage
I will only list Chips that are actually useful for the actual set ups. I need to briefly speak about the Purple Chip, Soul Cage, however.
This Chip used to be somewhat good, but has been nerfed too heavily. Originally, it increased ATK by 1 point for every 10 enemies killed, capping out at +999 ATK (or 9990 enemies killed) which you can reach fairly quickly and easily. Now, it gives only 1 ATK for every 100 enemies killed. It costs 30 POW, and you are better off equipping another CHD Chip instead and using the remaining 10 POW for something else. To compare the ATK increases between Soul Cage and another CHD Chip mathematically:
- One run, killing everything, on A difficulty (50% more enemy spawns), will give you maybe 2000 kills if you are lucky. This will increase the ATK bonus from Soul Cage by about 20 ATK per run.
- Meanwhile, if you collect 25 red Magic Cores during the same run, your ATK increases by 300. One additional CHD Chip (fully upgraded) will increase your Critical Hit Attack Power by 0.15 * ATK. So during that one run, you gain 0.15 * 300 ATK from that one CHD Chip, giving you 45 more ATK for each Critical Hit. And you should have 100% Crit or very close to it, giving you Critical Hits with every single hit.
- Thus, you gain more than twice the amount of ATK for less POW usage if you take the CHD Chip instead of the Soul Cage Chip. And you save yourself the time it would take to kill every single enemy during your run.
Recommended Skills to use often
- Ice Breaker:
midair special attack, fast to get around, running circles around enemies (that survive the initial impact), particularly useful to chip off damage from the Hidden Boss at the end of A difficulty and run off laughing
- Condense Ice Pick:
long range projectile, pierces enemies, hits multiple times dealing massive damage, cannot hit enemies that are too low to the ground unless you are standing half a platform below them
- Extreme Freezing Air:
mid range dust “projectile”, freezes enemies (that survive the initial hit), pierces shields (and all kinds of walls) and hits enemies close to the ground as well, excellent to use against those small charging guys that are invincible from the front in level 4, but has a lengthy windup before casting
Subweapons to use
- 2 x Solar Eclipse Defense Sphere
- generally useful to dash through hurt zones without taking damage
- your only defense in SS difficulty as all enemies have really high ARP, ignoring your defense
Chips (and POW costs)
- Strength of Knowing: 15 POW (Crit Chip, check Weapon Set Ups)
- you want 100% Crit
- Critical Damage: 20 POW (CHD Chip, check Weapon Set Ups)
- you want as many of them as possible to maximise your DPS
- Shield Piercing Projectile: 15 POW (ARP Chip, check Weapon Set Ups)
- you want 100% in order to ignore all enemy armour, especially on higher difficulties
- Steal Health: 40 POW
- you want a passive heal
- Ammunition Loading: 20 POW
- you want to increase the availability of your Solar Eclipse Defense Spheres
- Automatically Inject: 10 POW
- you want that emergency heal when getting severely low
- Unyielding Will: 15 POW
- increases your ATK as your HP decreases, useful until you start capping ATK normally
- Ammunition Depot: 5 POW
- increases the amount of your Solar Eclipse Defense Spheres
- Domain of Steel: 35 POW
- you will not be interrupted if you get hit
- Angel Feathers: 20 POW
- one time auto-revive for safety, is easy to acquire due to guaranteed spawns
- Move Body With Soul: 15 POW, blue Chip
- if you like using skills, in particular Condense Ice Pick
- Adrenaline: 20 POW, green Chip
- effectively same as Angel Feathers, but harder to get due to random spawns
- Accelerator: 15 POW, blue Chip
- if you like moving fast, can be useful for Magic Core Farming or evading attacks
- Shivering Instinct: 5 POW, green Chip
- inflicts fear, equip this only if you have 5 points spare as it is the best thing to do with 5 otherwise useless points
- Shield of Conviction: 15 POW, red Chip
- expensive, and you are probably better off running through E difficulty once and gathering green Cores; defense is only useful up to S difficulty, anyway, and you can tank just about everything there at about 1000 defense
What fear does:
I have no idea what exactly fear does, but Shivering Instinct is the best Chip to install if (and only if) you happen to have 5 POW spare, so might as well get that effect. It can be applied to at least some of the bosses, too. Some people have mentioned that fear might decrease enemy defense / make them take more damage, I personally have noticed myself outright missing some hits while under the effect. Either way, it’s not like there is anything better to do with 5 POW.
Weapon Set Ups
These Set Ups all assume you take all of the Blue and Green Chips listed above, as well as Move Body With Soul and Adrenaline from the list of Optional Chips. This leaves 400 POW for Red Chips and more optional Chips when having both Energy Recycled and Power Consumption fully upgraded (and of course the selected Chips upgraded fully if available).
If you decide not to use Move Body With Soul and/or Adrenaline, take CHD Chips instead as possible. Fill spare POW as you wish (I usually list Accelerator and Shivering Instinct, but any other Chip is fine), these details are up to personal preference, I am merely listing some suggestions.
If you remove Unyielding Will to free up 15 POW, you miss out on ATK increases as your HP lowers. Since Unyielding Will still caps at 9999 ATK, it is at its maximum usefulness at about 5000-6000 ATK, and the closer you get to 9999 ATK by farming red Magic Cores, the less useful this Chip becomes.
This guide only lists the most powerful weapons found at the shop in level 5.
Long Spear – sacred
- Stats: 40% ARP, 10% Crit, 0.5 CHD, 30% Chance to Slow
- Requires 6 Crit Chips AND 6 ARP Chips (220 POW left) AND
- 11 CHD Chips (3.65 CHD) OR
- 10 CHD Chips (3.50 CHD) + Accelerator + Shivering Instinct OR
- 11 CHD Chips (3.65 CHD) + Accelerator – Unyielding Will
Dual Blades – sun
- Stats: 20% ARP, 15% Crit, 0.4 CHD, 20% Chance to Burn
- Requires 6 Crit Chips AND 8 ARP Chips (190 POW left) AND
- 9 CHD Chips (3.25 CHD) + 10 POW spare OR
- 10 CHD Chips (3.40 CHD) – Unyielding Will + Shivering Instinct
Sword Shield VII
- Stats: 40% ARP, 40% Crit, 0 CHD, 30% Chance to Poison
- Requires 4 Crit Chips AND 6 ARP Chips (250 POW left) AND
- 12 CHD Chips (3.30 CHD) + 10 POW spare OR
- 11 CHD Chips (3.15 CHD) + Accelerator + 15 POW spare
Sword – thunder
- Stats: 30% ARP, 20% Crit, 0.2 CHD, 20% Chance to Stun
- Requires 5 Crit Chips (gives total 95% Crit) AND 7 ARP Chips (220 POW left) AND
- 11 CHD Chips (3.35 CHD) OR
- 10 CHD Chips (3.20 CHD) + Accelerator + Shivering Instinct OR
- 10 CHD Chips (3.20 CHD) + 1 more Crit Chip + Shivering Instinct OR
- 11 CHD Chips (3.35 CHD) + 1 more Crit Chip – Unyielding Will
- Stats: 0% ARP, 20% Crit, 0.5 CHD
- Requires 5 Crit Chips (gives total 95% Crit) AND 10 ARP Chips (175 POW left) AND
- 8 CHD Chips (3.20 CHD) + Accelerator OR
- 8 CHD Chips (3.20 CHD) + 1 more Crit Chip OR
- 7 CHD Chips (3.05 CHD) + 1 more Crit Chip + Accelerator + Shivering Instinct OR
- 9 CHD Chips (3.35 CHD) – Unyielding Will + 10 POW spare
Direct Comparison of Variable Stats when using above Set Ups, sorted from most powerful to least powerful:
- Long Spear:
- 100% Crit, 3.50-3.65 CHD, 30% Chance to Slow
- Dual Blades:
- 100% Crit, 3.25-3.40 CHD, 20% Chance to Burn
- Sword Shield:
- 100% Crit, 3.15-3.30 CHD, 30% Chance to Poison
- 95-100% Crit, 3.20-3.35 CHD, 20% Chance to Stun
- 95-100% Crit, 3.05-3.35 CHD, no special ability
In short, the Long Spear is the objectively best weapon to choose; it attacks fast, leaves few openings and is predictable, while also applying a useful effect that even works on bosses and having the highest damage multipliers. The midair attack is a single swing that is very powerful. This is also the weapon with the second best attack range.
The Dual Blades are a close second; however, their heavy attack chain leaves you open for a counterattack right before the third hit. Condition damage such as Burn (or Poison) is not very useful, either, because the damage from those are simply way too low above E difficulty.
Sword Shield gets third place, their biggest disavantages being the lack of a heavy attack, even lower attack multipliers and a midair attack that will crash you straight down on the second hit in the chain, and of course Poison does way too little damage as I have stated above.
Sword and Katana both suffer from their odd innate Crit stat which bring them to 95% and making you decide whether it is worth to you to close that gap, and overshoot the maximum of 100% by 10 percent points (since one Crit Chip gives 15 percent points but you only need 5 more), sacrificing other chips in return. This is generally really sad, as the Sword is a pretty great and fast weapon with decent attack mechanics, and allows you to stun enemies. I still give the Sword place number four in the rating.
And saddest of all, the Katana, the weapon with the best attack mechanics in the game – including a fancy, albeit useless extra special attack when charging with the heavy attack button – only reaches last place. This is not due to the fact that Katanas generally do not get any special passive abilities (the green stats on the weapon descriptions) but rather due to the innate Crit stat combined with the complete lack of ARP, forcing you to take a whopping 10 ARP Chips leaving you very little room for CHD Chips.
Closing Word, some general pointers
I shall leave you with a few more pointers outside of this optimisation:
- If you get stuck, you can always retreat to the beginning of your current floor by using the interact button while viewing the map. This will reset some things, however, Magic Cores will remain collected and will not reset, so you cannot use this to farm them, sadly.
- Your save files are in %AppData%\LocalLow\IceSitruuna\TowerHunter\PlayerPrefs, and you can check the date when they were modified last in order to find out when the game saved the last time.
- Farming Magic Cores basically just means gathering those stat increasing items, 5 per floor, while running through the tower. 3-4 may be locked behind silver key doors, 1-2 may be locked behind a gold key door, so save some keys. Sadly, Magic Cores do not show up on the map, unlike literally anything else of importance.
- The ideal difficulty to farm both Magic Cores and Crystals (for upgrades) is A. This difficulty offers a 50% chance of more enemy spawns and you gain nothing from doing S instead. Those 50% more enemies will drop crystals or items that you can recycle into crystals, thus increasing your crystal yield. Once you have upgraded everything you care about, just farm E difficulty and blitz through all the Magic Core spots; they always spawn in roughly the same areas, and always in the same amounts per level:
- 1 in 1-1, 4 in 1-2, one is guaranteed behind a gold key door
- 3 in 2-1, 2 in 2-2, one is guaranteed behind a silver key door
- 2 in 3-1, 3 in 3-2
- 1 in 4-1, 4 in 4-2, two are guaranteed behind silver key doors
- 2 in 5-1, 3 in 5-2
- Magic Cores (that are lying around in the open), chest drops, mob drops (including from torches etc.) and shops are not fixed spawns, so saving, quitting to title and reloading may change their type.
- Silver Keys seem to be most common on lower levels, Golden Keys most common on higher levels from what I have noticed. And since higher levels have better gear, you may want to save some keys from early on for later. It requires roughly 35 Silver Keys and 15 Golden Keys to open every door in the tower, although you can sometimes go around doors somehow since the semi-randomly generated levels have layouts that allow access “from the back”, so to speak.
- When farming Chips you really want, you can generally get almost any chip from almost anywhere. I have noticed that on level 1 and 2 the CHD Chips are waaaay more common than on higher levels. On higher levels, additionally, I have often noticed that blue chests simply would not drop any red Chips at all.
- Red chests seem to be more likely to drop chips and subweapons whereas blue chests seem to be more likely to drop main weapons. This is not based on statistical data, only on a glancing observation.
- The Condense Ice Pick Skill is really great and easy to use. I really enjoy oneshotting bosses before I can even see them and getting battle times of only a few seconds on all difficulties up to S.
What else I would like to see in an in-depth guide:
- Damage calculation and what damage multipliers each type of attack actually gets. For example, from what I can tell, the first hit of the weak attack combo on the spear seems to get a damage multiplier of 0.5 whereas the midair weak attack seems to get a multiplier of 2. The damage multipliers for skills also do not seem to match their descriptions. This is all assuming that damage is simply calculated by ATK * ( Attack-dependent Factor or Skill Multiplier ) * CHD, for crits, of course.
- All conditions and what they do. Fear, of course, in particular, but there might also be other conditions that might be interesting to know more about. Blind and Confusion seem fairly obvious in what they do, but Poison and Burn (and maybe other conditions I am not even thinking of) would be interesting for their damage calculation and if their damage can be increased to useful levels. Also, I have not been able to properly tell what exactly Slow does, so far it seems to do rather little. Maybe it decreases Skill Energy Regeneration? I do not feel like it slows enemy movement…
- If there are pieces of clothing that change your stats besides the two pieces that increase your ATK or defense by 2, respectively. Maybe one of the others has some effect I do not even know about! Not that a stat increase of 2 is really worthwhile for either, but it exists. And I quite like the defense one! Not a fan of the ATK one at all, in my very personal opinion, it is the worst looking dress.
- A guide that makes subweapons actually usable, maybe an optimisation guide around a “magic” based build (read: using subweapons for most of their damage) rather than a direct attacker (with weapons and stuff!).
And with that, I hope this guide helped you somewhat. Enjoy the game!