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What does the Dirty Coin do in Resident Evil 7?

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Players went to extremes to get this reward from the demo. Now what?

Resident Evil 7 biohazard

Ever since Resident Evil 7’s initial demo was released last summer, fans were obsessed with a bizarre puzzle that seemed to have no solution. Then, after a final update to the demo in December, players finally cracked the code. The reward for all of this trouble? An item called the Dirty Coin that players could take with them into the release version of Resident Evil 7.

Since then, fans have spent the last month speculating on what the Dirty Coin will accomplish in the full game. Now that we’ve played it, we can give you the big reveal, and it’s ... kind of disappointing, actually.

Throughout the course of Resident Evil 7, you can pick up special collectibles called Ancient Coins. At a few points throughout the game, you’ll encounter locked bird cages that can be opened by placing a set number of Ancient Coins in them. The cages contain a couple of upgrades — a health upgrade and a boost to your reload speed — as well as a super-powerful weapon, the Magnum.

There are around 20 Antique Coins total in the game, and you’ll need most of them if you want to open up all of the birdcages available. So what does the Dirty Coin do? Simply put, it operates as an extra Antique Coin, one that will be in your item box from the start of the game. It can help you either get a head start on upgrades earlier in the game than normal or fill out your collection, if you don’t manage to find every single Antique Coin.

For players who loved the obscure puzzle that led to this reward, the Dirty Coin’s use might be a little disappointing. Don’t fret, however. Resident Evil 7 is a big game, and we wouldn’t be shocked at all if there are still a lot of secrets waiting to be discovered in it. And hey, that Magnum is going to help. Trust us.

For more on Resident Evil 7, check out our review or watch some gameplay in the video below. And if you haven’t managed to get the Dirty Coin in the demo for yourself yet, we’ve got a guide that should help you out.