Aliens Dark Descent is a tactical strategy in which it is easy to fail the campaign objectives even on a normal difficulty level. On this page of our guide, you'll find starting tips. We focus on the most important aspects such as survival, maintaining good health of the team, and successful exploration of maps.
- Use shelters to rest and save your progress
- Prepare before larger and more intense battles
- Use Command Points on a regular basis
- Avoid unnecessary confrontations
- You don't have to complete the whole mission in one go
- Explore rooms carefully for loot and secrets
- Use ARC for cover and travelling across the map
Use shelters to rest and save your progress
When exploring you'll surely encounter rooms marked a green house icon. This information means that you can create a shelter from the room, which requires welding all the doors leading to it (best to choose rooms with only one entrance). Once a shelter is created, you can rest, which offers following benefits:
- Lowering the stress levels of marines by a maximum of 100 points. High stress levels lower marines' effectiveness on the battlefield and places negative statuses on them.
- You can save your progress in the current mission.
- Selected negative statuses (e.g. bleeding) will be removed.
More information on shelters can be found on a separate page How to create a shelter and how to rest?
Prepare before larger and more intense battles
Xenomorphs often attack by surprise, but you can anticipate and prepare for some of the encounters. These include, among others, boss battles and Massive Onslaughts which are described in detail on a dedicated page. When preparing for a battle, you should:
- Heal marines and check the ammunition levels in their main weapons.
- As much as possible, try to find a good place for defense e.g. one that only has one corridor through which the xenomorphs can appear.
- When left with a room with multiple entrances, try to weld the doors to protect the squad from flanking or rear attacks.
- Deploy Sentry Guns and/or place mines.
- Check the Motion Tracker for traces of xenomorph presence to learn from which way they may attack.
Use Command Points on a regular basis
Command Points are spent by using active skills. In contrast with remaining resources (Tools, ammunition) Command Points refill over time. As a result, you shouldn't hold onto them, but spend them during battles on regular basis. We especially recommend:
- Sentry Gun - a stationary turret offering a lot of firepower.
- Suppressing Fire - a skill that slows down enemies caught in its range.
- U1 Grenade Launcher - a good attack capable of killing groups of opponents.
To view the list of recommended active skills, visit Basics -> Best Skills page of the guide.
Avoid unnecessary confrontations
Each battle and enemy you face creates a risk of marines' injury and depleting your ammunition supply. In case of xenomorphs, additional problem is the gradually filling bar of Alien Aggressiveness. When it reaches higher values, the battles gain on intensity, with waves of xenomorphs appearing along with elite units. When preparing for a battle, you should:
- Observe the Motion Tracker and avoid getting close to enemies patrolling a given area.
- Place marines at covers that make detection less likely and in case of battles against humans, protect from fire.
- Look at the map and prepare alternative routes to the objective that may skip dangerous areas.
We've described the topic of alien aggression thoroughly in FAQ -> How to reset hard aggressiveness level? page of the guide.
You don't have to complete the whole mission in one go
Theoretically, Aliens Dark Descent's campaign consists of 12 missions, but all of them are rather long. The game itself encourages you not to try to complete them in one go. The difficulty level as you spend time in a given location.
- In the course of a mission, xenomorph gain on strength and intenstity - this is related to the Alien Aggression mechanic which we've described in the previous section.
- As an effect of intense combat, your marines can become injured, start feeling stressed, or have negative effects applied, which will lower their performance on the battlefield.
- Moreover, there is the problem of ammo, which is a resource quickly dwindling if your squad is constantly attacked by xenomorphs.
At any moment during a mission, you can return to the ARC and from it, exfiltrate to USS Otago. From the ship level, you can send marines to the clinic or for a rest, choose another (rested) batch of soldiers and return to the mission from the same place where you've left it.
USS Otago page of our guide is a great source to learn more about facilities on the ship.
Explore rooms carefully for loot and secrets
Upon entering each new room, you should open your map on which will icons of interactive objects appear. Look especially for:
- Interactive chests - they may contain ammunition, Tools, medicines, materials, or equipment (e.g. additional Sentry Guns). You can only pick up items if the inventory limit hasn't been yet reached.
- Datapads and projects - these are the main types of collectibles in the game. Especially important are the latter, as they unlock new research projects at USS Otago.
- Corpses - in the case of human corpses, you can obtain random loot, and with xenomorphs, you can gain xenosamples needed for conducting research.
- Terminals - you can hack into them using Tools and unlock new passages, e.g., to secret areas.
Use ARC for cover and travelling across the map
The recon carrier is unlocked soon after beginning the campaign and you should rely on it often. This vehicle has 2 main uses:
- Reinforcing defense - during combat, you can return to the ARC to use it as additional cover and a source of firepower - the large cannon of the vehicle deals a lot of damage and kills quickly. Relying on the cannon is also a way to limit ammunition loss.
- Reaching travel destinations on the map - your squad can board the ARC and choose destinations to travel to. During the ride, your soldiers will be completely safe and you'll avoid unnecessary battles.
To learn more about the ARC and its uses, visit Basics -> ARC page of the guide.