The six weapons of Hades are your primary means of battle through the ever-changing, ever-punishing halls of the Underworld. And there’s an awful lot to learn about each one, with different movesets, upgrades, and aspects to unlock for each Infernal Arm throughout your journeys.
Our Hades weapons guide looks to furnish you with all the knowledge you need to wield these titan-slaying weapons, with in-depth tips and details on every facet of each one – and my personal opinion on the very best weapons in Hades.
In this Hades weapons guide:
- How to unlock weapons in Hades
- Best weapons in Hades
- Weapon Aspects explained
- Daedalus Hammer upgrades
- Stygius (Sword) | Coronacht (Bow) | Aegis (Shield)
- Varatha (Spear) | Malphon (Fists) | Exagryph (Gun)
How to unlock weapons in Hades
Weapons in Hades, known as Infernal Arms, are kept in the Courtyard – the final room of the House of Hades before you begin your next run. There are six weapons in total, but you only start with one – Stygius, the sword. To unlock the other weapons in Hades, you have to spend the Chthonic Keys you find throughout your runs. Each weapon requires a certain number of Keys to unlock:
- Stygius (unlocked from the beginning)
- Coronacht (requires 1 Key)
- Aegis (requires 3 Keys)
- Varatha (requires 4 Keys)
- Malphon (requires 8 Keys)
- Exagryph (requires 8 Keys)
Do note that the more expensive weapons aren’t necessarily stronger than the cheaper weapons. With the right upgrades and Boons, you can grow to become ludicrously powerful with any of the six Infernal Arms available to you. For more information on all the best Boons to use in conjunction with these Infernal Arms, check out our Hades Boons guide.
Best weapons in Hades
Now let’s talk about my thoughts on the best weapons in Hades. Which is a strange idea, because the weapon is nothing without the Boons, Aspects, and Daedalus Upgrades that go with it. But having said that, there are a couple of weapons which I find give you a better chance of creating a game-winning build, and an easier ride through the Underworld in general.
Personally, I consider Coronacht to be the best weapon in Hades. Mastery of this powerful bow relies on good timing, because you’ll need to get used to its power-shot with and without dash-striking (more on this shortly), but once you’ve got that down, this weapon allows you to deal massive and consistent damage from a safe distance, which will help an awful lot in the later realms (particularly Styx) when you’re almost guaranteed to take damage getting into melee range with certain enemies.
A close second is Aegis the Shield, whose block can be a literal life-saver when you’ve no other way to avoid taking damage. It also boasts probably the highest utility of any Hades weapon, with a punishing attack, a ranged throw for smaller enemies, and a charge attack for quickly closing or increasing the gap between you and the enemy.
My third favourite weapon is Stygius – the old reliable sword which deals excellent, reliable damage whether you choose to focus on the regular attack combo or the area-of-effect special attack. It doesn’t quite offer the same safety as the above two weapons, but Stygius matches them both for sheer damage potential, and it’s a hell of a lot of fun to use (as you can see from my playthrough video above!).
But any of the six weapons can grow to become astonishingly powerful with the right combination of upgrades. And aside from Boons, these upgrades come in two forms: Aspects, and Daedalus Hammer upgrades.
Weapon Aspects explained
Each Infernal Arm also has access to four forms, known as Aspects, which you can switch between at the start of each run. But, like the weapons themselves, these Aspects must be unlocked by spending Titan Blood – a rare resource you obtain only by completing boss battles during your runs.
Each Aspect offers a specific bonus to one area of the weapon’s moveset (possibly even changing the moveset altogether). Once unlocked, each Aspect can also be upgraded to a maximum level of 5 with subsequent spending of Titan Blood. Full details on each weapon’s Aspects are below.
Daedalus Hammer upgrades
Finally, each weapon in Hades has a specific set of Daedalus Hammer upgrades which you’ll gain by picking up Daedalus Hammers throughout your run. These upgrades don’t persist between runs, but they are extremely powerful bonuses that you should prioritise finding throughout each run. Below you’ll find a full list of all Daedalus Hammer upgrades for each weapon.
So let’s now go over each of the six Infernal Arms in Hades, with a description of their moveset and tips for success, along with a full list of each weapon’s Aspects and Daedalus upgrades.
Stygius is built for balance between strength and speed (which is why it makes for a good starting weapon). Its three attacks are easy to learn: there’s a three-step combo which ends in a knockback thrust; a dash-strike which skips straight to the knockback thrust; and a special, which deals heavy knockback damage in a large area around Zagreus, but takes a moment’s preparation and recovery. Also, if you dash before the Special detonates, the AoE effect will follow you, giving you what is in essence a super-charged dash-strike.
|Zagreus||Bonus Attack Speed & Move Speed (+3/6/9/12/15%)|
|Nemesis||For 3s after your Special, your Attack has increased Crit Chance (+15/19/22/26/30%)|
|Poseidon||Your Special dislodges Cast Ammo from Foes. Increased Cast Damage (+10/20/30/40/50%)|
|Arthur||You have Holy Excalibur, and +50 Max Health.
Holy Excalibur features different attacks which deal increased damage but no longer knockback; and your Special creates an aura around its detonation point which provides damage reduction, disables traps, and dramatically slows enemy projectiles.
Special Aura Damage Reduction: (+20/25/30/35/40%)
Stygius Daedalus Upgrades:
|Breaching Slash||Your Attack deals +300% damage to Armor.|
|Cruel Thrust||Your Thrust deals +200% damage and has a +40% Critical chance.|
|Cursed Slash||Your Attack restores 2 Health, but you have -60% Health.|
|Double Edge||Your Dash-Strike hits twice and deals +30% damage.|
|Double Nova||Your Special hits twice in a smaller area; no longer knocks foes away.|
|Flurry Slash||Hold Attack to strike rapidly, dealing 25 base damage per hit.|
|Greater Consecration||Your Holy Excalibur aura is +45% larger; makes foes +10% slower (Aspect of Arthur).|
|Hoarding Slash||Your Attack deals bonus damage equal to 5% of your current Coin.|
|Piercing Wave||Your Attack fires a wave that pierces foes, dealing 25 damage.|
|Shadow Slash||Your Attack deals +200% damage when striking foes from behind.|
|Snap Nova||You lunge forward when you use your Special; use again to lunge back.
Increases Nova damage.
|Super Nova||Your Special hits a wider area and deals +20% damage.|
|World Splitter||Your Attack is replaced with a big chop that deals 90 base damage.|
Coronacht is probably the weapon I’ve had most success with in Hades. Its special (firing a spray of arrows in a cone) is utter crap and you should never bother to upgrade it; but once you get used to dash-striking and releasing your arrow at the right moment for a power-shot, you’ll quickly realise just how insanely strong this bow can be. And bear in mind that dash-striking lowers the charge-up time before your power-shot, so you should dash-strike as much as possible with Coronacht.
|Zagreus||Bonus Crit Chance (+2/4/6/8/10%)|
|Chiron||Your Special automatically seeks the foe last struck by your Attack.
Max shots per Special: (3/4/5/6/7)
|Hera||Your Cast loads Cast Ammo into your next Attack, firing on impact.
Ammo drop time: (10/8/6.67/6.15/5s)
|Rama||You have Celestial Sharanga, which can cause Shared Suffering damage (30/38/45/53/60%).
Celestial Sharanga moves deal more damage than the usual moveset, and your Special causes Shared Suffering, which deals a portion of your Attack damage for 7s.
Coronacht Daedalus Upgrades:
|Chain Shot||Your Attack bounces to up to 3 foes, dealing +15% damage for each.|
|Charged Volley||Hold Special for up to 300% damage; minimum range is reduced.|
|Concentrated Volley||Your Special deals +4 damage for each consecutive hit to a foe.|
|Explosive Shot||Your Attack deals +300% damage in an area, but charges slower.|
|Flurry Shot||Hold Attack to shoot rapidly, but you cannot Power Shot.|
|Perfect Shot||Your Power Shot deals +100% damage.|
|Piercing Volley||Your Special pierces foes and deals +400% damage to Armor.|
|Point-Blank Shot||Your Attack deals +150% damage to nearby foes.|
|Relentless Volley||Your Special shoots +4 shots.|
|Repulse Shot||Your Celestial Sharanga Attack creates a Blast Wave around you (Aspect of Rama).|
|Sniper Shot||Your Attack deals +200% damage to distant foes.|
|Triple Shot||Your Attack fires 3 shots in a spread pattern.|
|Twin Shot||Your Attack fires 2 shots side-by-side, but has reduced range.|
Aegis, despite being a shield, fits well with a very aggressive playstyle. Its utility is its greatest strength: as well as the powerful single attacks you can unleash, you can hold Attack to block attacks in a certain direction, before letting go to charge forwards in a Bull Rush. And finally, your Shield can be thrown with your special attack, ricocheting between enemies before returning to you.
|Zagreus||Bonus Attack and Dash-Strike damage (+3/6/9/12/15)|
|Chaos||After you Bull Rush, your next Special throws multiple shields (+1/2/3/4/5)|
|Zeus||Your Special is replaced with Blitz Disc, which deals damage per hit (8/13/19/24/30).
Blitz Disc moves through enemies, dealing rapid damage before returning to you. You can attack as normal while Blitz Disc is active.
|Beowulf||You have Naegling’s Board, but take +10% damage.
Naegling’s Board moveset deals higher damage than usual, and you can load your Cast into your Bull Rush to turn it into an upgraded Dragon Rush.
Dragon Rush Bonus Damage & AoE: (+20/40/60/80/100%).
Aegis Daedalus Upgrades:
|Breaching Rush||Your Bull Rush deals +400% damage to Armor.|
|Charged Flight||Hold Special to charge your throw for up to +200% damage.|
|Charged Shot||Your Bull Rush instead fires a piercing shot that deals 80 damage.|
|Dashing Flight||While you Dash, your Special is faster and deals +100% damage.|
|Dashing Wallop||Your Dash Attack deals +50% damage in a larger area.|
|Dread Flight||Your Special can strike up to 4 additional foes before returning.|
|Empowering Flight||After your Special hits, your next 2 Attacks deal +80% damage.|
|Explosive Return||Your Special deals 50 damage to nearby foes when you catch it.|
|Ferocious Guard||After blocking a foe, gain +20% damage and move speed for 10 Sec.|
|Minotaur Rush||Your Bull Rush gains a Power Rush that does +500% damage.|
|Pulverizing Blow||Your Attack hits twice, but does not knock foes away.|
|Sudden Rush||Your Bull Rush charges much faster.|
|Unyielding Defence||After using your Naegling’s Board Cast, you are Sturdy for 3 Sec (Aspect of Beowulf).|
Varatha’s charge-up Spin Attack is what you should construct your build around in every Varatha run. Hold attack to charge it up, then release to deal massive damage in a large area around you. You can also dash instead of releasing, and you’ll dash forward to unleash the Spin Attack. Aside from this, you have a fairly normal and underwhelming attack and throw special, both of which can be upgraded to become powerful but neither of which are particularly impressive until then.
|Zagreus||Bonus Special damage, range, and speed (+10/14/18/22/25%)|
|Achilles||After your Special, you can retrieve your Spear with Raging Rush. Raging Rush dashes you to your Spear. You gain bonus damage for your next 4 attacks/casts.
Bonus Post-Rush Damage: (+50/75/100/125/150%)
|Hades||Your Spin Attack becomes Punishing Sweep.
Punishing Sweep is a larger AoE which increases damage dealt on every hit foe for 10s.
Bonus damage post-Punishing Sweep: (+30/60/90/120/150%).
|Guan Yu||You have the Frost Fair Blade, but your Health and Healing are reduced (-70/65/60/55/50%).
With Frost Fair Blade, your attacks deal bonus damage, and you can charge your attack for a Serpent Slash, which sends out a spinning blade that deals damage and heals Zagreus per hit. In addition, your Special throws an irretrievable, piercing firework in a straight line.
Varatha Daedalus Upgrades:
|Breaching Skewer||Your Special deals +400% damage to Armor.|
|Chain Skewer||Your Special bounces to up to 7 foes, dealing +30% damage for each.|
|Charged Skewer||Hold Special to charge your skewer for up to +200% damage.|
|Exploding Launcher||Your Special is replaced with a shot that deals 50 damage in an area.|
|Extending Jab||Your Attack has more range and deals +40% damage to distant foes.|
|Flurry Jab||Hold Attack to strike rapidly, but you cannot Spin Attack.|
|Massive Spin||Your Spin Attack deals +125% damage and hits a larger area.|
|Quick Spin||Your Spin Attack charges and recovers much faster.|
|Serrated Point||Your Dash-Strike hits 3 times, but your dash has -20% range.|
|Vicious Skewer||Your Special deals +50% damage; +50% Critical chance on recovery.|
|Winged Serpent||Your Serpent Slash ability travels longer (Aspect of Guan Yu).|
Malphon boasts the highest attack rate of any melee weapon, which increases its potential when upgraded. Your main attack is a fast five-hit combo, and your Special is a high-damage uppercut. You can turn either your regular attack or your special into a Dash-Strike which deals bonus damage. The only downside to Malphon is that you have to get up close and personal with even the most dangerous of adversaries.
|Zagreus||Bonus Dodge Chance (+5/8/10/13/15%)|
|Talos||Your Special becomes Magnetic Cutter; its pull deals 20 damage.
Magnetic Cutter pulls foes in towards you; affected foes take bonus attack/cast damage for 4s.
Bonus Magnetic Attack & Cast Damage Bonus: (+8/16/24/32/40%).
|Demeter||After landing 12 strikes, your next Special hits more times (+1/2/3/4/5)|
|Gilgamesh||You have the Claws of Enkidu, whose Dash-Upper can maim foes for bonus damage (100/175/200/325/400)|
Malphon Daedalus Upgrades:
|Breaching Cross||Your Dash-Strike pierces foes and deals +900% damage to Armor.|
|Colossus Knuckle||You cannot be stunned while using your Attack or Special.|
|Concentrated Knuckle||Your Attack deals +5 damage for each uninterrupted hit to a foe.|
|Draining Cutter||Whenever your Special slays foes, restore 2% life.|
|Explosive Upper||Your Dash-Upper deals +100% damage in an area.|
|Flying Cutter||Hold Special for longer range and up to +200% damage.|
|Heavy Knuckle||Your Attack becomes a stronger, slower 3-hit sequence.|
|Kinetic Launcher||Your Cutter special becomes a charged ranged attack.|
|Long Knuckle||Your Attack has more range and deals +10% damage.|
|Quake Cutter||After using your Special, deal 40 damage in an area where you land.|
|Rolling Knuckle||Your Attack sequence ends with a +60% damage Dash-Strike.|
|Rush Kick||Your Special becomes an advancing kick that also deals 40 damage twice.|
Exagryph is probably the hardest weapon in Hades to master, but its potential is unlimited, whether you choose to focus on its regular high-fire-rate attack or its powerful special, which fires a slow-moving Bombard into the air to land and deal high damage in an area. You’ll have to become well-versed in manually reloading your weapon at the right moment, but after that – and with some good upgrades – not much can withstand Exagryph.
|Zagreus||Bonus Ammo Capacity (+4/6/8/10/12)|
|Eris||For 8s after absorbing your Special’s blast, deal bonus damage (+15/30/45/60/75%)|
|Hestia||After manually reloading, your next shot deals bonus damage (+50/75/100/125/150)|
|Lucifer||You have Igneus Eden. Bonus Hellfire Blast Damage: (50/63/75/88/100).
Igneus Eden replaces your main attack with a beam which deals ever-escalating damage; and your Special becomes Hellfire, dealing damage over time in an area before exploding for massive damage.
Exagryph Daedalus Upgrades:
|Cluster Bomb||Your Special fires a spread of 5 bombs, but each deals -30% damage.|
|Concentrated Fire||Your Attack deals +1 damage for each uninterrupted hit to a foe.|
|Delta Chamber||Your Attack is a 3-round burst; you never have to Reload.|
|Explosive Fire||Your Attack deals damage in an area and briefly slows foes.|
|Flash Fire||Your Igneus Eden Attack starts firing and fires +50% faster with +15% range (Aspect of Lucifer).|
|Flurry Fire||Your Attack is faster and more accurate; gain +6 ammo capacity.|
|Hazard Bomb||Your Special deals +150% damage in a large area, but can hurt you.|
|Infinity Chamber||Your Igneus Eden has ∞ ammo, but its damage no longer ramps (Aspect of Lucifer).|
|Piercing Fire||Your Attack pierces foes and deals +50% damage to Armor.|
|Rocket Bomb||Your Special is replaced with a rocket that deals 80 base damage.|
|Seeking Fire||Your Attack seeks the nearest foe and deals +10% damage.|
|Spread Fire||Your Attack becomes a short spread that deals 50 base damage.|
|Targeting System||Foes targeted by your Special move slower and take +30% damage.|
|Triple Beam||Your Igneus Eden Attack fires 3 beams in a spread pattern (Aspect of Lucifer).|
|Triple Bomb||You can use your Special 3 times in rapid succession.|
That wraps up our Hades weapons guide. You should now have a pretty decent idea of the opportunities and powers available to you with each of the Infernal Arms. But that’s not all we have to say on the topic of Supergiant’s marvellous roguelite! Be sure to check out our Hades guide for in-depth tips and links to all our other Hades guides.