Bloodstained – New Player Advice

by Jason Parker (Ragachak)

Here’s my set up for my money grind, and location –

My review of Bloodstained will be coming this week, and while there’s a lot to talk about and say, I’ll leave most of it for that review. But there’s so much to see, and so much to do in the game, that I feel like it could possibly be overwhelming for new players. There are stuff people could easily miss out on, if they aren’t aware, or if they listen to certain NPCs. But that misdirection/advice fits into the story, it’s not a mistranslation. I’ll let people discover that for themselves – sort of. Something I didn’t include in this list of stuff is farming money, but I want to talk about it. Farming Money became incredibly easy about 12-15 hours into the game, Once I had Augment: Luck, Augment: Gold, Spike Armor and a few of the +Luck items. The trick is to get all of these equipped, and find an area you can easily run through with lots of lanterns. With this setup, you can easily pull 100k+ gold in a few minutes of running, even faster if you have Accelerator/Invert. I use Spike Armor because you just have to hit the lamps with your body instead of swinging a weapon. Also, when you get the This is such a deep game, and I’m already setting up for my NG+ Hard, and then Nightmare after that. So, I thought I might write this companion piece to go with the upcoming review. I hope it helps!

Do Not Sell Shards – As you play through the game, you kill demons, and they will randomly give you Shards, which offer a variety of useful powers, passives, and abilities. You are able to sell these to Dominique very early in the game, and the money is going to be tempting. But don’t do it! Avoid the temptation to sell them unless you’re absolutely never going to use that Shard. It fits into the story why she’s doing this, but there’s a much better reason to hoard these Shards for yourself. You can enhance your Shards using items, but as you collect more copies of the same Shard, it increases in “Grade”, which enhances the strength on another level. You can see in the Shards menu what improving them does, and more important than all of that – Enchantment (Yellow) Shards become White (Passive) when they hit level 9! Yes, picking up 9 Optimizer Shards means you will have that Attack Speed buff no matter what (unless you turn it off, I guess), and can equip something else. I learned this a little too late into my run and had to go back and do a lot of grinding to make up for it.

Spend Plenty of Time Farming – On that note, spend plenty of time farming items and kills! I spend extra time killing demons and running back and forth through rooms and areas – common (grey/blue) chests respawn when you return to an area, so you can get the materials and potential weapons from them over and over again. This is even better with gear that gives more rare drops/more alchemic drops/etc. There are some amazing weapons that drop off of demons too, and having multiples of some of them means you get some overwhelmingly strong gear in the late game. I’ll get to that soon though. Not a single item drops that isn’t useful in some manner or another, and you’ll want to level up yourself as well as your familiar of choice. Farming those Shards in the early game makes a lot of encounters trivial if you’re prepared for them. Except for Zangetsu, I think he’s pretty much always a jerk. Explore, swing at walls, jump towards weird places, and solve puzzles! There’s so much in it for you.

Take The Time To Do Side-Quests – Side-Quests might seem tedious, even boring in Bloodstained – and you’d be right! They kind of are. Especially cooking. I didn’t even realize Cooking Side-Quests existed until I was almost done with the game (thanks Andy!), and so I grinded all of them in one sitting. Some of them require some pretty rare ingredients, so farming will be required in the later parts of the Cooking Missions, and some of the “Memento” side-quests require gear that drops off of demons, so ultimately – you’re gonna farm. But there are some truly phenomenal rewards. For example – finishing the Cooking Side-Quests gives you a hat. But it’s not just any hat – it’s a hat that gives unlimited ammo for your guns! Did you want to try a gun build, but hate that ammo runs out, and crafting is expensive (though you do have unlimited “regular” ammo)? Now you can! Guns are super strong in Bloodstained, but again – ammo. Side-Quests have great benefits, but there is something doing them taught me – Disassemble/Alkahest rare/useful dishes often, before you give them to Sadie. Why?

Make Liberal Use of Alkahests/Disassemble – Some of those ingredients are overwhelmingly rare – Flying Beef has anywhere from a 1-6% drop rate. So what’s the solution to being able to make these dishes often? It takes some cash, but it’s worth it. Get one or two of the rare ingredients you’re after, and make a dish that has those ingredients in them. Now, take the dish back and disassemble it down to its core parts (requires purchasing/farming Alkahests). You get the materials back, and now you can buy the dish from the local shop! Now instead of farming the mats to make a dish/make other, harder dishes, you can just buy the meal, and disassemble it for parts. This isn’t a game changer, but it can certainly cut down on some more serious farming in Bloodstained, and I already do plenty of that.

Crissaegrim Is In The Game – Sorta – Were you, like me, a fan of Symphony of the Night? If so, you may remember the overwhelmingly busted Crissaegrim weapon – each time you swung once, it shot several arcs in front of you. It has lower base damage but makes up for it in the sheer volume of swings you can spam. Well, it’s in the game! Sort of! Early on, you’ll encounter the “Killer Barber” in the Cathedral. His common drop is the “Sharp Razor”, but he can drop Rhava Bural too, which will feel like a weaker, more disappointing Crissaegrim. But take heart! Once you have Invert, and access to a few items, you can craft the Rhava Velar, and that is the Crissaegrim reborn. It’s busted, it’s fast, and it’s so so very good. You can very easily miss it though – you find it on the way to. I can tell you that it’s in the Hall of Termination. I didn’t want to spoil more than that. Sure, there are the 8/16/32bit weapons you can make, and rare, awesome weapons by the score. But none of them are more memorable to me than this one.

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