Fighting is the most complex and important element of Mutant Year Zero: Road to Eden. On this page, we have compiled the most important tips and hints about them. You will learn how to attack your opponents by surprise, how to make the best use of action points and how to win battles.
Detailed descriptions of specific battles can be found in the walkthrough of the game in our World Atlas. There are no random encounters in the game. Each location is always guarded by the same enemies.
- Additional preparations for combat
- Hiding and going out of hiding
- Playing the first turn
- Using action points
- How to effectively attack your opponents?
- How to defend?
- Healing and bringing heroes back to life
Doing a reconnaissance should be a mandatory step before the start of each battle, even if you play at the lowest difficulty level. The reconnaissance has several important applications:
- You can determine which opponents are in the location and what level of experience they have. If they are marked with a skull icon, it means that they are definitely too strong for the team - return to this location after you have been promoted through battles in other locations.
- You can select single enemies or patrols of two, which can be attacked separately, and thus fight much simpler battles.
- You can find good places for an ambush (e.g. buildings, large obstacles offering full cover, viewpoints).
Turn off the torch (left mouse button on the PC, circle on PS4, and B on XONE) before you start a reconnaissance. The team enters sneaking mode and it will be harder for enemies to spot the heroes. Additionally, it is good to conduct the reconnaissance alone (press the team split button). This reduces the risk that other heroes controlled by the AI will make a mistake.
When sneaking avoids entering the red circles symbolizing the fields of view of the opponents. Otherwise, the team will be detected prematurely. Not only will you not be able to set up your people behind cover, but also your opponents will be the first to make their moves.
It's worth knowing about a certain facilitation - you can hide behind an obstacle while planning an ambush and wait for a patrolling opponent to arrive. You will not be detected even if the team member is inside the red circle. This is a good way to get as close as possible to your enemies before the fight.
Additional preparations for combat
In addition to a reconnaissance, you should also do a few other things before you start fighting:
- Save the game. This is possible as long as you do not have the Iron Mutant modifier set, which blocks manual saves. Saving will protect you if, for example, it turns out that there are many more enemies in the area, which you hadn't noticed before the fight.
- Prepare weapons, grenades and, above all, abilities for the type of enemies involved. Find out more about problematic opponents the section entitled How to deal with difficult opponents? in our guide.
- Arrange your people in the best possible positions. Team members should hide behind full cover (full shield icon) or occupy higher viewpoints (e.g. floor or roof of a building).
- Wait until patrolling enemies find themselves in the most sensitive positions. If you want to attack e.g. a single enemy, it is worth waiting until they move away from the main group. There is a chance that you can kill them without alerting your enemies. If, for example, you want to use grenades to attack several enemies, it is a good idea to wait until they are close together. The explosion will then be able to injure (or kill) all of them.
Only after taking care of all the things in the above list press the attack button to attack by surprise (SPACE on PC, Square on PS4, X on XONE).
If you have initiated a turn-based fight but have changed your mind at the last minute, you can end it and return to real-time exploration. This is only possible if you have not yet attacked anyone and if the heroes have not yet been noticed.
Hiding and going out of hiding
Mutant Year Zero features an additional mechanism for hiding team members. The main purpose of this is to lead them out of hiding only when they are most useful.
- By default, the heroes are hidden if you managed to arrange an ambush, i.e. start the battle before the team has been noticed.
- At the beginning of the turn, each member of the team will ask if you want to get them out of hiding (an example message in the picture above). Confirmation of exit from hiding is required if you want the person to attack enemies, but if the hero is in an uncomfortable position then you can abstain from this to one of the next turns. It is worthwhile to behave like this in those battles that do not give many opportunities to get the team in position. The hidden character is not attacked by enemies.
- Hiding behind cover is not tantamount to invisibility. A hiding member of the team can be detected by enemies and will automatically come out of hiding. This will happen if an opponent is not far away from them. Hiding up is not a good way of playing battles in small locations.
- The game allows you to hide the team members again after the beginning of the battle. This is only possible if the action is not noticed by the enemies. This is a useful function when, for example, you deal with the first group of mutants and the second group is just heading towards the team.
Playing the first turn
Playing the first turn correctly is very important, especially if you managed to carry out a surprise attack. Here are some ideas and important information on this subject:
- If you are dealing with a single opponent or a pair of weak opponents, you can carry out a quiet attack. Use silent weapons such as a crossbow or silencer pistol to eliminate the threat without alerting other enemies.
- When using standard weapons or grenades, other opponents on the map will hear the sounds of fighting, but only when they are close enough. If they are at the other end of the map, you don't have to limit yourself to silent weapons and you can use all your arsenal. Unfortunately, the game does not indicate the distance at which the sounds of the battle will be heard. You can test this by trial and error after you have created a manual save of the game.
- In the first round, it is worth focusing on the opponent or opponents who pose the greatest threat to the team. It can weaken them with standard attacks or use some kind of ability to e.g. stop them in place or even paralyze them for a few turns.
- Some team members may benefit from a premium for hidden attacks. This includes, for example, Silent Assassin's passive ability, which doubles the chances of a critical strike when firing a hidden shot. It is worth considering using it in order to increase your chances of depriving your opponent of as many health points as possible.
Using action points
The consumption of action points functions in Mutant Year Zero on very similar principles, e.g. to the XCOM series. Any heroes have 2 action points per turn, but some actions end it prematurely, i.e. do not allow to perform the second action in the turn.
- In most cases, you should aim to perform two different actions in one turn. The second action is not blocked by such actions as short distance travel (fields marked with a white circle - for example in the picture above), reloading weapons or using a first-aid kit.
- A turn can end prematurely if you move full distance (going out of the white area), use a weapon, throw an item, go into overwatch mode, hide or use active abilities. None of the actions in the game requires the use of 2 action points. You can simply fire them in second order so you don't lose any action point.
- It's worth giving up two actions only in exceptional cases, e.g. when you want to hide your hero without alerting your opponents, when you want to move to the maximum allowed distance to get closer to distant enemies, or when going out of the veil means shooting at the hero by enemies with a guard set up.
Changing a weapon to a grenade does not consume action points. You can use these options to determine, for example, whether your opponent is within range of a grenade throw or what are the percentages of chances of hitting him from the other weapon you have.
How to effectively attack your opponents?
Here are a number of tips that should help you eliminate hostile ghouls and robots:
- Check the percentage chances before shooting. The game allows you to check the chances of reaching the target when aiming AND when highlighting the area to move (the information concerns the currently used weapon), so you can find out if it is worth going to the spotted place. The aim is that in most situations they should be 70% or more. If they are low for the current weapon, also check the secondary weapon (it is good to have at least one to fight at a greater distance).
- Check the amount of damage before firing. Similarly, to the chance of a successful shot, you can check the forecast amount of damage (note - it does not take into account any additional critical damage!). It is not worth attacking the opponent if after hitting him 1-2 health points because they will still be fully active after their turn. Remember that damage can be partially absorbed by the armor. Always look at your opponent's health bar and you'll find out if he can die right away or exactly how many points of health they have left.
- Try to attack enemies from a flank or from above. These types of attacks are characterized by increased percentage chances of success. Look around in each location for spots that allow you to surprise enemies from a flank or shoot them from the roof, the first floor of a building or any other vantage point.
- Use grenades when enemies stand close to each other. Each grenade in the game has a specific field of effect. Just as with the chances of a hit, you can check it before you make a throw. Make sure that as many opponents as possible are highlighted when planning a throw - only they will be in range.
- Deprive opponents of cover. Shooting opponents behind cover (especially full ones) is characterized by much lower chances of success. The covers can be destroyed, though. In the initial phase of the game grenades are used for this, but in the further part of the campaign, you will also get weapons that can break through the cover.
- Modify your weapons. As the game progresses, enemies become stronger and stronger. Return after examining each location on the Ark. You can develop weapons there by spending collected parts and modify them by installing improvements. First of all, improve the weapons you use most often.
- Rely on active abilities. Using weapons and grenades is not the only way to weaken enemies. Don't forget the skills of the heroes either. It's a good idea to use your abilities at the beginning of a fight, so killing more enemies will allow you to renew them. In case of battles with more enemies, you will be able to use the same ability twice during the battle.
- Watch your opponents' behavior during their turn. If your opponent has gone into the overwatch mode, don't go out in the open in the next turn with your team members. If an opponent has started a more important activity (e.g. healing by a medical bot or preparing to shoot from a mech, try to stop them when your turn arrives.
How to defend?
You can spend action points not only on offensive activities but also on defensive ones. Here are some hints and tips on this subject:
- Rely on full covers whenever possible. Full cover offers 75% protection. For comparison, a partial curtain offers only 25%. This is a huge difference and it is always worth trying harder to find a better shelter. The exception is when you are going to attack enemies from the top shelf. It is difficult to find a full cover and you have to accept weaker protection in return for a better field of view and a better chance of accurate shots.
- Frequently activate the overwatch. Mutant Year Zero doesn't force you to play aggressively. Overwatch is aids safe, defensive gameplay. Activate it if you don't have a good opportunity to shoot accurately or if going out of hiding exposes the team members to danger.
- Don't leave your team too close to each other. This is important during fights with those enemies, who can carry out area attacks (these are primarily pyroghules). Moving the heroes away from each other will cause only one of them to take damage in case of such an attack. An exception to this rule are situations when it is very advisable to defend oneself inside a single room or a small building. Team members can then guard each other and keep an eye on each the entrances.
- Stop or stun difficult opponents. Getting rid of problematic enemies should always be a priority for you. Unfortunately, they are often strong and it may not be possible to defeat them in the first or second round. Try to stop them for a while. The abilities of Tree Hugger and Circuit Breaker (when fighting robots) are very useful, but you can also support yourself with weapon upgrades that give you a high chance to stun your opponents.
- Quickly get rid of enemies who can call for reinforcements. These are mainly shamans. Try to deal with these characters as early as in the first round, even if you have to leave a good curtain. After summoning reinforcements, it can be much harder for heroes to survive without taking serious damage.
Healing and bringing heroes back to life
This topic is described in detail in the section entitled How to heal team members? in our guide. Below are just a few of the most important points.
- The default method of treating a team member is using the first-aid kit, but they are not found in large numbers and they are quite expensive in the shop on Ark. Use them only if the hero is close to death. If it is possible, a team member should be cured only after the battle, because all health points are always regained.
- An alternative method of healing a team member is using the Corpse Eater skill, which can be purchased for Bormin and Farrow. This ability allows you to devour the corpses of enemies and renews many health points. Unfortunately, it also has some drawbacks - you have to reach a killed opponent (not a robot!) during the battle (it will be impossible after the battle) and you have to renew your ability after it is used.
If the hero loses all health points, he will start bleeding out. Avoid this, because if you want to save this character, you will have to reach them with another member of the team and use the first-aid kit. This is very often risky and the assisting person can find themselves under heavy fire. It is worth noting here the possibility of purchasing Tough Guy's abilities on the Arc (in exchange for one of the artifacts). It increases the bleeding time and gives you more time (turns) to reach your dying companion. This allows you to cleanse the area from enemies before healing them.