Iratus: Lord of the Dead can be a very unforgiving game with some serious difficulty spikes. If you’re planning to extinguish all life and find yourself stuck somewhere down in the crypt, this here guide might give you some helpful pointers.
NOTE: This is based on the Early Access version and some numbers and things might shift around before full release.
Drive Them Mad In many ways, Iratus plays like a reversed Darkest Dungeon. For instance, enemies are susceptible to stress attacks which can affect their mind, making them less capable fighters and eventually lead to their death. If you find yourself having trouble with some tough enemies, don’t forget to check out some of the more powerful stress attacks at your disposal. Enemies who are strong against physical attacks are generally weak against mental ones. Initial minions who do good stress damage are the Banshee, Bride of Iratus and the Wraith.
Upgrade Your Crypt After doing some tutorial missions, you will have the ability to rebuild and upgrade structures within your crypt. These can give you some very good boosts and benefits, so it is a good idea to get this up and running quickly. The most important structure is the mortuary as it will let you fully heal minions between fights. I recommend getting this first and unlocking the second slot as soon as possible since it really helps with keeping your forces alive. Each structure requires a minion to be stationed there to function properly, luckily they don’t care as to what minion is there so feel free to fill it up with cheap skeletons.
Save Rarer Materials The minion creator will automatically put the best version of a crafting part in its respective slot. Avoid this as some of the rarer stuff is quite difficult to come by and might be wasted on a low-level minion. An upgrade to Iratus’ skill tree will unlock the ability to swap out the parts in a minion after they have been created, this lets you level up a minion a bit before you bestow some of the better body parts on them.
Don’t Forget the Magicks Unlike Darkest Dungeon, Iratus has some global magical powers which you unlock via his skill tree. These can be used during combat with some terrific results– if you have enough mana for it, that is. I recommend unlocking the Spine Bomb and the Bone Spear attack early on; the Spine Bomb does a devastating amount of damage while the spear has a chance of stunning an enemy for one turn.
Don’t Overstock on Minions As you first set out, it might seem like you are receiving a large number of materials which might tempt you to start pumping out countless undead minions. Resist this urge, create only the minions you need in any given moment and save the material for when things go bad (because they will) and you need to rebuild completely. This is because you cannot grind any new materials if you get stuck. So, if you are throwing yourself against a boss, you will have to make do with what you have already gathered. That said, it is a good idea to at least try out the different minions once and learn how they work best together. Just don’t go too crazy on the whole necromancy thing.
Equip the Right Gear Both Iratus and minions will gain access to some equippable gear from time to time. It is, however, easy to overlook this and forget equipping them. The equipment you get for Iratus can be especially potent as they will grant you new spells or increase your minions’ overall stats. Before you head into battle, it is therefore recommended you take a look at your inventory to make sure you have the right tools for the job.
Choose the Right Path There is little to no opportunity to grind out XP or materials in Iratus. Therefore, it is strongly recommended that you study the map and decide which path to follow early on. On the map, there is everything from health and mana replenishers to sacrificial altars, which can be used to boost yourself or your armies. As things stand now, I’d recommend taking the path with as many battles as possible. These battles will give you XP to upgrade yourself and your armies in addition to materials to create new minions, should they perish. Since you cannot go back and grind things out, these become invaluable resources once you get stuck on a hard boss or enemy somewhere.
So there you have some early game tips which will likely help you burst out of your crypt and murder all life. Again, Iratus: Lord of the Dead is in Early Access and will likely change a lot over its course. For now, though, this will get you started.