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Tunic beginner’s guide, tips, and tricks

What does the fox say?

Tunic’s fox holding up a sword Image: Andrew Shouldice/Finji via Polygon

Tunic is an adventure game starring a cute fox available, but don’t let the cartoony visuals and vibrant colors fool you, because many challenges await. Here’s our Tunic beginner’s guide to help you with survival, exploration, and combat on Xbox One, Xbox Series X, Steam and in Xbox Game Pass.

Stamina is key: dodging, blocking, sprinting, and locking on

At the start of your adventure in Tunic, you’ll only need to worry about two resource bars: health (pink/red) and stamina (green). For the latter, this will get slowly depleted as you perform dodges (pressing A on an Xbox controller) or when you block attacks with a shield (RT).

When almost fully depleted, the stamina bar will flash red. Your character will only be able to hop, while also taking more damage from hits. If you need to avoid encounters, you can hold A to sprint.

A Tunic screenshot showing LT near an enemy, signifying the lock-on prompt. Image: Andrew Shouldice/Finji via Polygon

Since we’re also talking about general combat mechanics, you’ll spot a button prompt over the heads of enemies. You can press LT to lock on so you can engage specific targets.

You can enable No Fail Mode and No Stamina Restrictions via the Accessibility panel. Doing so will prevent your character from losing HP and stamina.

Use potions and equip tools

Collecting a potion in Tunic, showing a prompt to press RB Image: Andrew Shouldice/Finji via Polygon

As for your health, this is restored whenever you interact with shrines (more on shrines later), as well as when you use potions.

When you obtain whole bottles of potion, you’ll receive a single charge. Meanwhile, those that are broken (potion shards) need to be collected. You can acquire three potion shards to receive an extra charge. Interacting with shrines will refresh all charges, too.

Tunic’s menu, where you can assign weapons and tools to the X, Y, or B buttons. Image: Andrew Shouldice/Finji via Polygon

Now, as for your equipment, you can see the items you’ve picked up by pressing LB. At the bottom of the selection, you’ll notice weapons and tools that you can equip. Simply press X, Y, or B with these items highlighted to assign a button.

Study Tunic’s instruction booklet and overworld map

Tunic’s overworld map, showing the Dark Tomb, Old House, Belltower, an arrow pointing to the west garden and more. Image: Andrew Shouldice/Finji via Polygon

Tunic takes inspiration from both The Legend of Zelda and FromSoftware’s Dark Souls franchise, as well as Bloodborne and Elden Ring. This becomes more pronounced as you explore, when the action begins fairly straightforwardly but you realize that a lot of information remains cryptic.

For instance, the glowing crystals that you pick up are pages of an Instruction Booklet. Many of its pages are incomplete, and even item descriptions are indecipherable. Thankfully, clues will be revealed as you progress, such as the Overworld Map. While this shows a 2D representation of the game world, it can help guide you to new locations and your next objective. You can also press A to zoom in.

Take advantage of shrines, teleporters, and telescopes

The main fox character stands next to a shrine in Tunic Image: Andrew Shouldice/Finji via Polygon

Tunic’s zones usually have multiple shrines. If you’ve played FromSoftware games before, including Elden Ring, then you can think of these as bonfires or sites of grace. They’ll replenish your HP and potion flasks, though they’ll also cause enemies to respawn.

Standing on a teleporter in Tunic Image: Andrew Shouldice/Finji via Polygon

As for teleporters, these are the large, golden squares on a raised platform. When you walk over them, nothing will happen. However, if you press and hold the A button, you’ll be transported to another realm. There, you’ll find other teleporters to access.

The protagonist fox looks through a telescope in Tunic Image: Andrew Shouldice/Finji via Polygon

Lastly, you can interact with telescopes to give you a clear view of an area. You’ll spot several hostiles and maybe some chests, too. An important tidbit here is to look for hidden nooks, ledges, or paths when you’re about to delve deeper into another zone.

Look for hidden paths and puzzle doors

A hidden path next to a waterfall in Tunic Image: Andrew Shouldice/Finji via Polygon

Speaking of hidden paths, make sure to check the lay of the land. For instance, there’s a shrine in front of the Sealed Temple in the game’s first area. Your first instinct might be to walk down the steps to cross the bridge, only to find out that the way is blocked. However, if you look at the waterfall to the side, you’ll be able to go underneath through a hidden nook, leading you to the western section of this area.

Standing in front of a puzzle door in Tunic Image: Andrew Shouldice/Finji via Polygon

Be on the lookout for puzzle doors as well. These are akin to gray murals with strange symbols. The idea is to use your controller’s D-pad to press the correct buttons.

You can see an example above where we’ve marked the starting point at the left side of the mural. All you need to do is press up, right, down, left, down, and right on the D-pad to open the door.

Coins: buying from the merchant, deaths, and lost currency

At a merchant near the windmill in Tunic Image: Andrew Shouldice/Finji via Polygon

You can amass coins in Tunic by smashing objects like vases, opening certain chests, and eliminating mobs. The currency is used to buy items from the merchant. One merchant location early in the game is the Windmill, which is due west of the Sealed Temple.

Of course, given that there are challenges along the way, your character could end up dying. If this happens, you’ll lose all the coins in your possession, and you’ll respawn at the nearest shrine.

Similar to FromSoftware games, you’ll have to make your way back to the place where you died. Your character’s ghost will be there, and hitting the A button will restore your coins and also trigger an explosion that damages nearby opponents.

The next level of puzzles.

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