This guide contains Tips and Strategies to complete the < 500 Damage Challenge on the Infested City Level. Included are a Full Walk-Through of the level, as well as an overview of the different Weapons and Abilities that may help complete the challenge.
Minor Spoiler Warning
This is a walk-through of the Infested City Level of the game. There is little to no actual story involved in this level, but still. It also features weapons and armor from throughout the game and DLC; some of which may have lore behind them that is not yet revealed by this point in the game.
If this is your first play-through, and you do not want any spoilers (however mild), then I recommend completing the story of the game and coming back to this guide (and challenge) at a later date.
I don’t normally do guides like this (or create any sort of online presence). However, after around 2 hours and easily 50+ restarts trying to complete this challenge, I felt the need to pass on what I learned so that hopefully anyone else attempting this challenge may have an easier time.
Fair warning, this challenge is brutal. There is a lot of ranged enemies, exploding enemies, and environmental hazards on this level; and this challenge requires the least amount of damage taken out of all the “Minimize Damage” challenges.
If you want to complete this, you will almost certainly fail a number of times before you complete it. Try not to get too frustrated, and don’t be afraid to come back to it another time.
This guide will focus on tips and strategies to complete the challenge specific to this level. However, many of these strategies can apply to other levels as well.
1.0 Difficulty Setting
First and foremost, do it on Story Difficulty . Don’t be a hero (or martyr may be more appropriate for this game). There is no difference between difficulties for this challenge besides the amount of damage enemies do to you and vice versa. Trying this on a harder difficulty will only lead to needless frustration.
2.0 Level Walk-Through
Some general tips as you go through this and similar challenges:
- Use choke-points to your advantage against hordes of basic enemies. Avoid choke-points and corners when dealing with larger enemies like the Shaman and Spitters.
- Pay extra attention to where the environmental hazards are.
It’s very annoying to try and dash out of the way of an Exploder just to get slapped by a Tentacle.
- Pay attention to how much damage you receive from different enemies, and learn which enemies to prioritize (killing or avoiding).
For example (on story) a typical Warrior will deal 10-ish damage per attack, Amazons around 30-ish, Shaman around 100, Exploders around 250-ish. On the other hand, the spit/acid ranged attacks from Spiders and Cherubs are only around 1 or 2 damage, if any.
2.1 Level Walk-Through – First Room
The first room of enemies is pretty easy, and shouldn’t require any tips.
For me, I just funneled them up the ramp and chipped away at them with my preferred weapons (staff or whip) and powers.
2.2 Level Walk-Through – Second Room
The second major room with enemies (ignoring the one small room with zombies on the way) is a challenge at first, but becomes more-so just tedious once you get used to completing it.
- First, bait the enemies right by the entrance (the ones sitting around a fire) out of the room (ideally without going in) and take them out in the hallway or smaller room.
This should be easy, so long as you make sure to single out the spider(s) quickly, and keep an eye out for the Onoskelis fireballs (take them out as soon as you get the chance).
- Next, the key is to immediately rush to the opposite end of the room (where the path opens once all enemies are defeated) and kill all the Zombies that spawn there.
This is critical because it seems like these zombies are tied to the Shaman that also spawns there. So long as all of the minions that the Shaman summons are alive, the Shaman will become very aggressive and either try and melee attack you or hit you with a powerful ranged “wave” attack. If you kill most of it’s minions, however, it will keep running away to summon more.
Even though the Shaman did not actually spawn in the Zombies at the back, it will not spawn new minions and instead just attacks you relentlessly until those specific Zombies have been dealt with.
3. Once you have dealt with the back-room Zombies, the rest of the room should be pretty straight forward. Avoid the Exploders and Tentacles; pick off any remaining Onoskelis, and then just chip away at the Shaman, watching out for its “wave” attack, and killing its minions to keep it trying to spawn more. Also, try to stay out in the open and avoid getting cornered by the Shaman.
- Even on “Story” difficulty the Exploders are deadly. If you are caught even in their explosion (at all), you will take 250-280 damage. So avoiding them should always be priority number one.
- The Shaman’s ranged “wave” attack will shoot forward in a straight line from where they are facing and will continue to travel through walls and obstacles. So if you see it begin the attack (it will start pumping its staff in the air over its head) immediately get out of the way to the left or right. You can’t outrun or hide from it.
- There are some low hanging objects that will blow up and/or set the ground on fire if they get hit (mostly in the midsection of the room). Try to avoid standing under these if you can.
- Keep an eye on how much damage you have taken in this room. I would not recommend going into the Fourth room (not the next one, but the one after) with any more than 200 damage.
2.3 Level Walk-Through – Third Room
The third room is another easy one that shouldn’t require an explanation. Pick them off as the come down the stairs or funnel them into choke-points around the center table.
2.4 Level Walk-Through – Fourth Room
Heads Up:The fourth room is an absolute nightmare for this kind of challenge, and what will most likely ruin your run.
Stage 01: Destroy the Nests – To get through this quickly and easily, don’t bother with the Eggs. Instead, lure the Exploders over to the Nests and let them blow up the Nests for you (may need to assist them with a kick or attack).
If you run out of those enemies (more should spawn, but you may not want to wait), then you will have to use the eggs.
Just remember that when you go to kick something, the higher you aim the higher/farther the thing will fly. Also, if you pull the eggs, they will float around in front of you briefly, which should make a high-kick a little easier.
Stage 02: For kicking the Zombies into the fires, I don’t really have any advice beyond keeping in mind that kicking while aiming higher up will launch them farther.
The fires seem to require you to hit a very specific spot to activate, so there will be times where the enemy hits the fire, or even lands on top of it, and doesn’t actually count. On top of that, the Zombies seem very heavy, and don’t get thrown very far when they do get kicked (they also seem like they don’t always register the kick either). So this stage will just take some patience and trial and error until you get used to dealing with it.
- Stage 03: This stage is the nightmare and is what will almost certainly ruin your run numerous times over.
You have two strange Chort variants (let’s say Spitter Chorts – or just Spitters) that will not only attack you viciously up close, and take a ton of damage to kill, but also have a ranged acid/poison ball attack that they can lob at you from very far away, very accurately, and at a high rate of fire.
They can easily push you over the 500 damage limit in seconds.
The key for this stage is to keep them distracted using certain abilities (more in Armor section) while relentlessly hitting them with ranged weapons from the other side of the room. There are also a LOT of Exploders that spawn during this fight, so you need to be very careful not to let them get close to you.
Try to stick to what little cover there is in the room (like, two stone columns) in case the Spitters target you and make sure to always have Minions or a Decoy drawing their attention.
That’s really about the best advice I can give, no matter what this part is going to require a healthy mix of trial and error and luck to get through it.
2.5 Level Walk-Through – Final Room
This may appear like a mess at first, but is actually pretty straightforward if you do it right.
- First, take out the three Onoskelis from the ledge before dropping into the room.
- After that, just find a nice spot in between the fire traps to sit and wait while all the enemies (exclusively basic warriors) come to you.
- Once you have cleared the room the exit portal will appear and you can leave. Just be sure not to let the flames hit you on your way out.
- Sometimes enemies will get stuck on the environment in this room, so you may have to search for the last one or two. Just make sure not to hit the flames and keep an eye behind you in case they try to pull a fast one.
- There is a lower section to this room that you can go to, that periodically fills with lava.
DO NOT go down there, it WILL ruin your run. If an enemy gets trapped down there the lava should take care of them, if not, just shoot them from a distance.
As the Spitters are by far the biggest problem in this challenge, I will focus on the abilities that can be best used to deal with that part.
3.1 Armor – Agretha
This is the armor I used to complete this challenge. It is part of the “Gladiator Arena” DLC, however, so not everybody will have it.
The key with this armor is the “Spawn Minion” Ability. It spawns a bunch of Skeletons by default to fight/distract the enemy.
It can also be charged up 2x if you hold the power button long enough. On the 1st charge, it will summon Amazon Warriors; and on the 2nd a Large Chort.
The ability is quite expensive, as it costs 6 power charges to use it. Also keep in mind that it takes a few seconds and you move slow while charging it, so be careful when using it.
I would recommend using the Amazons as much as possible, the Skeletons die very quickly and the Chort’s AI seems to be bugged, so it rarely actually attacks, and will often just wander around aimlessly.
For the Spitter room, as soon as you activate the last fire, start charging the Minions and spawn them around the Spitters.
I’d recommend from there to take try and clear one of the areas with cover of any Exploders. Then just keep spawning in Amazons (or Skeletons in a pinch) to keep the Spitters busy while you keep shooting them with a ranged weapon.
Of all the abilities/strategies I have tried this seems to be the best by far (only one to actually succeed). The large number of minions does an excellent job keeping the enemies busy for a while, and they also deal damage to the Spitters which makes killing them go by that much quicker.
3.2 Armor – Bone Collector
If you do not have the DLC or haven’t unlocked the Agretha armor, then this would be my next best recommendation.
This armor comes with the “Decoy” ability which spawns a shade copy of Vydija that draws in enemies.
It can also be charged 2x, and each charge seems to either give the decoy more health, or increase the time it stays active.
This ability does very well at drawing the enemies attention. Even enemies already attacking you will turn and go at the decoy after a second delay. The ability also only requires 3 power charges as opposed to the Agretha’s 6, and seems to charge up faster.
The strategy with this one is more or less the same as Agretha’s: spawn a Decoy immediately when the Spitters land; clear a safezone of Exploders by some cover; keep spawning Decoys and attacking the Spitters with ranged weapons.
This one will require some more care to always keep a Decoy active than Agretha’s. The Decoys are harder to see compared to Agretha’s bright orange Minions, and they don’t seem to last as long.
3.3 Armor – Shamanic Girdle
This option is by far the riskiest.
This armor comes with the “Explosive Decoy” ability, which functions similar to the regular decoy; except this one spawns a generic Succubus or Amazon shaped Decoy on the ground, that explodes after a certain delay.
It costs the same and can be charged just the same as the regular decoy. Except charging it up seems to increase the damage or blast radius, not the time it is active.
This armor also has a “Fire Totem” ability, that spawns in a turret that shoots fireballs at enemies.
This turret can be charged up to last longer.
Running this setup allows you to dish out significantly more damage than the other two, and therefore kill the Spitters significantly quicker. However, this is at the cost of your own safety, as the Explosive Decoy does not last very long and if you mix it with Totems, you will not be able to keep the Spitters distracted. That means that you won’t be able to just hunker down behind cover, and will have to constantly stay on the move to avoid their attacks.
This armor also gives you another option for dealing with the nest earlier in this room. The explosive decoy should also count as an explosive just like the exploding enemies and eggs.
You are going to want at least one ranged weapon for the bosses, as well as one weapon that you can use to reliably deal with the hordes of weaker enemies.
4.1 Weapons – Staff
The staff is, in my opinion, the best weapon in the game.
It can attack extremely fast, has at least a little bit of an area of effect, and deals high damage with each hit.
It also seems like enemies will try very hard to dodge all of your attacks (usually in vain) which means they are not actively attacking you.
The special attack also seems to stun almost any enemy, allowing you to keep heavier enemies (Chorts and lesser Chorts) under control.
4.2 Weapons – Whip
This weapon is great at sweeping large groups of enemies.
Its special attack has a quite a long range to it for a melee weapon, has a wide area of effect, and most importantly: can damage shield-bearing enemies without you being staggered.
4.3 Weapons – Dual Blades
While not great as melee weapons (in my opinion), these are very effective ranged weapons.
You can repeatedly spam their special attack to constantly send out ranged strikes faster than any other weapon.
Even though they don’t do as much damage per shot as other ranged weapons, their spammability makes them the best choice for dealing with the Spitters and Shaman.
The ranged attacks also will track whatever enemy you are aiming at (usually) after a short delay. While not a great feature for this challenge, it’s awesome for taking out Cherubs.
4.4 Weapons – Spear
Coming in just behind the dual blades as best ranged weapon for this challenge. The spear can be used to decent effect as a melee weapon, because it allows you to damage enemies up close without having to be right in their face (though it’s hit registration seems unreliable at times).
It’s special ranged attack is somewhat slower but deals more damage than the dual blades (it also does not track enemies).
The only reason I don’t put this above dual blades is because the slower attack speed makes it easier to accidentally cancel a ranged attack by letting go too quickly during all the chaos.
4.5 Weapons – Bow
Normally I run the bow as my go to ranged weapon, and I still feel like it works great for bosses, since it lets you move and shoot fairly quickly (it also has some savage melee finishers).
However, for this challenge it just doesn’t feel quick enough. It also can be very unreliable with hit registration (especially against smaller enemies) so I didn’t really find it all that useful under these circumstances.
I also wanted to mention that, in order to complete this mission, it requires you to play and use gear differently than pretty much any other map, challenge, or circumstance.
So I wanted to point out that for a normal run (including other “Min Damage” challenges), I would focus on using armors that have “sustained fire” abilities like the Flamethrower, Chain Lightning Thrower, and Spike Minigun.
Combine these with choke-points and you can tear through large groups of enemies with ease. They also allow you to put out consistent damage against bosses from a distance while on the move.
Best of Luck
I hope this guide proves helpful. I tried to be as thorough as possible.