The Enhanced Edition update for Metro Exodus rolled out over the weekend, and I’ve been playing quite a bit, if only to enjoy the sumptuous new visuals that include remastered lighting and 60 frames per second gameplay on Xbox Series X|S. I’m no hardcore enthusiast, but I have put together some Metro Exodus hardcore tips. Here’s my advice on how to tackle the game on its harder difficulties.
Always be sneaking
Artyom might be called a Spartan, but that doesn’t mean he’s Master Chief. He’s actually as fragile as anybody else would be, and on Ranger Hardcore mode he goes down after one or two well-placed shots. So your best option is always the sneaky option, and reserve the guns blazing route for times when it is asked for in the story.
That being said, the designers of Metro Exodus are a sneaky bunch, too. Like many other games, it employs a visual design that puts you on some straightforward sneaking paths, but puts a few surprises like traps along the way. So you should be prepared to make some detours from the obvious and stealth around with your brain on.
Exploit the edges of the map
Like any good video game, the vast open areas of Metro Exodus have their limits. Take advantage of this! By going to the edge of the map, you’ll end up keeping enemy spawns on one side of you. For example, in Taiga, wolves and other enemies won’t spawn anywhere other than east because you’ve got the mountains on the west.
Save up on filters
Mutants, cannibals and cultists are just a few of the things that can kill you in Metro Exodus, but you know what else wants to kill you? The air. That’s right the air is so toxic only Glee’s Sue Sylvester can breathe it. Good thing you have a gas mask with filters to get through it. But in higher difficulties, you’ve got to hold onto as many as you can find.
In the final level, you might need to burn through more than half an hour worth of filters, so make sure you’re gathering more filters than you’re spending and make sure Artyom isn’t straining himself too much, because that burns through filter time faster.
Craft where you can whenever you can
One of the most important Metro Exodus hardcore tips is to craft on the go when you need to. You don’t want to be caught in a jam without the right tool or a dirty weapon and besides, at higher difficulties there are fewer benches in the world. There’s a big temptation to wait until you find a workbench to save on supplies. But most of the time you’ll need items sooner than it takes to get to one.
Throwables are really useful
I’ve played a lot of games with throwables and more often than not, I find myself hoarding them for a situation where I need every little piece of kit on me to beat a tough boss or challenge, but never actually using them. That’s not the case in Metro Exodus where a knife in the right place can mean the difference between survival and all of Russia knowing where you are.
Grenades and molotov cocktails can also really get you out of a jam, whether it’s a stealth run gone wrong or a mutant boss just hot on your butt. That’s why you should really upgrade the throwing harness first over anything else. New gun attachments can wait.
Most enemies burn real good
Did you know that fire hurts and can possibly kill? Kidding aside, I find it to be a general rule of thumb in most videogames that fire is either one of the most common damage types from enemies — and therefore a good resistance to take — or the damage type that enemies are most vulnerable to. In Metro Exodus, even the most heavily-armored foe burns real good.
So make sure to always craft a spare molotov or two to have on hand, and be ready to light em up when the going gets tough. Few enemies have fire resistance, and those that do are better of sneaking around or ignoring anyway.
Avoid long gunfights
Early in the game, Metro Exodus tells you that guns get dirty and need to be cleaned or maintained. This is one of those lessons I learned the hard way as I just went, “Yeah, yeah” and then my rifle jammed and I was dead. That’s because on higher difficulties, your guns will wear out at a rate you actually have to take seriously, and that means getting shot in the face when you trade bullets for too long.
Just don’t fight anything you have to and for the love of god, clean your guns. Besides, it’s a waste of ammo to not get your enemies with any more than just a few shots. And it goes without saying, but aim for the head! That shouldn’t even be on a list of Metro Exodus hardcore tips!