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Mortal Shell class guide: Shells, best abilities, and locations

Understand the not-classes of Mortal Shell

Mortal Shell shell guide abilities locations Image: Cold Symmetry/PlayStack via Polygon
Jeffrey Parkin (he/him) has been writing video game guides for Polygon for almost seven years. He has learned to love just about every genre of game that exists.

There are no classes or assignable stats in Mortal Shell. Instead, there are four titular shells for you to find and inhabit: Harros, the Vassal; Solomon, the Scholar; Eredrim, the Venerable; and Tiel, the Acolyte.

In this guide, we’ll introduce you to all four, show you where to find them, and talk about their strengths and weaknesses.

Shell stats and abilities

Shells are the bodies you inhabit in Mortal Shell, since your true form is a ghostly, blank Westworld host. While in a shell, you take on the stats (and, later, abilities) of that shell.

When you find a shell, you won’t be able to see anything about it. With your new shell, head to Sester Genessa in Fallgrim Tower (that temple you find early in the game). Spend the tar to unlock the shell’s name, and you’ll be able to unlock new abilities by spending more tar and glimpses. You’ll also be able to see the shell’s stats in your menu.

Shells have three stats: Durability, Stamina, and Resolve. Durability is your health. Its red bar measures how many times you can get hit before you get forcibly ejected from your shell. Stamina’s green bar measures how much running, dodging, and attacking you can do. Resolve is a parry and special attack gauge.

Each shell has an array of unlockable abilities that are mostly themed to that shell’s specialty (we’ll talk more about each below). All four shells have three abilities in common, though:

  • Recollection of Strength, which unlocks a kick.
  • Recollection of Knowledge, which lets you deal extra damage when (if) you drop on an enemy from above.
  • Recollection of Death, which is the best one because it resets your Last Chance — your ability to reenter your shell when you get forcefully removed — after you’ve killed a certain number of enemies. This means you can reenter a shell multiple times across the course of a run (instead of just once), provided you kill enough enemies in between.

The four shells

The four shells you’ll find in Mortal Shell approximate classes. We’ll break them all down below. We’ve also included a map to help you find your way to each shell. If you’d like a more detailed map with a lot more icons, you can find our full map here.

Harros, the Vassal (the starter)

Mortal Shell class guide: Shells, best abilities, and locations
Harros, the Vassal.
Image: Cold Symmetry/PlayStack via Polygon

Harros is the shell you’ll find during Mortal Shell’s tutorial. Harros is well-balanced, so think of him as the base model. You’ll have about equal health (Durability) and Stamina, and a moderate reserve of Resolve.

Harros’ abilities focus on earning Glimpses, occasional healing, and keeping your Harden reset times down. His best abilities are Accretion of Resolve and Accretion of Endurance. Resolve reduces your harden cooldown, and Endurance refills your stamina while hardened.

Where to find Harros, the Vassal

You’ll find Harros during the game’s tutorial. He’s in a dead end off to the left as soon as you crawl out of the very first long tunnel.

Solomon, the Scholar (the upgrade)

Mortal Shell class guide: Shells, best abilities, and locations
Solomon, the Scholar.
Image: Cold Symmetry/PlayStack via Polygon

Think of Solomon as an upgrade to the base model (Harros). Solomon gives you a slightly larger health bar than Harros and has the highest resolve of any shell. His stats make him a safe and easy-to-understand shell that gives you lots of opportunities for special attacks. (He’s our favorite shell.)

Solomon’s abilities are a little more esoteric, with abilities to speed up your familiarity with items and recharging your Resolve. For his abilities, focus on Accretion of Inheritance to regain Resolve while hardened, Accretion of Ascent to restore Resolve by performing an empowered riposte, and Accretion of Dominance to give you more time to get back to your shell during a Last Chance.

Where to find Solomon, the Scholar

Mortal Shell Solomon, the Scholar shell location
Solomon, the Scholar shell location.
Image: Cold Symmetry/PlayStack via Polygon

From Fallgrim Tower, head out the door and straight across the small, swampy area there. Go through the tunnel to the boss fight arena with Grisha (if you’re only interested in the shell, you can ignore Grisha).

Angle slightly to the left, and head down the hill. There’s a tunnel there that will lead you to a small cave. Inside the cave, handle the jumping, scavenger monster, and you’ll find Solomon on the ground.

Eredrim, the Venerable (the tank)

Mortal Shell class guide: Shells, best abilities, and locations
Eredrim, the Venerable.
Image: Cold Symmetry/PlayStack via Polygon

Eredrim is a tank with maxed out health (Durability) but low Stamina and Resolve. He can take a beating, but your ability to dodge or even swing your weapon is severely limited.

Eredrim’s abilities match his beefiness. You’ll unlock abilities to keep you from getting knocked down and knocking down your enemies more often, adding extra damage to your attacks, and adding even more health. Eredrim’s best abilities are Accretion of Resolve, which stacks up extra damage between kills, and Accretion of Endurance, which further increases his health.

Where to find Eredrim, the Venerable

Mortal Shell Eredrim the Venerable shell location
Eredrim, the Venerable shell location.
Image: Cold Symmetry/PlayStack via Polygon

Eredrim’s shell is most of the way to the Seat of Infinity where you’ll find the Hammer and Chisel. The fastest way to get there is to return to Griska’s arena. Stick to the right wall, and you’ll find a tunnel to crawl through.

On the other side, you’ll be along the lip of a canyon. Fight your way to the other end — there are a bunch of archers here, so be careful — and you’ll come to an overlook. You’ll also start to see large, obsidian-like slabs along here.

Snake your way through one more brigand camp, and you’ll find a path down to the Seat of Infinity entrance. Eredrim will be on your left.

Tiel, the Acolyte (the rogue)

Mortal Shell class guide: Shells, best abilities, and locations
Tiel, the Acolyte.
Image: Cold Symmetry/PlayStack via Polygon

Tiel is the skull-faced rogue of the shells. He’s the opposite of Eredrim stats-wise with maxed out Stamina, but low Health and Resolve. Also, Tiel vanishes into a mist instead of Hardening during a dodge (which is just cool).

Tiel is roguish in his abilities as well. His abilities tend to focus on dealing or even healing from poison damage and maximizing his stamina-based abilities. Focus on unlocking Accretion of Dominance to deal poison damage and Accretion of Ascent for a chance to lose Stamina instead of health (Durability) when you’re hit.

Where to find Tiel, the Acolyte

Mortal Shell Tiel, the Acolyte shell location
Tiel, the Acolyte shell location.
Image: Cold Symmetry/PlayStack via Polygon

Tiel, the Acolyte is probably the hardest shell to reach. Starting from Fallgrim Tower, head down the tunnel (don’t go through the door). When you get back outside, make your way down to the bat tree — this isn’t an official name, but you’ll know it when you see it.

Keep to the left, and fight your way through the bandit camp here. There’s another tunnel to walk through behind the campfire.

Follow the path down, and watch along your right for some boards to smash. There’s a tunnel to crawl through here. You’ll have to fight one of those jumping scavengers to recover Tiel’s shell.

Swapping shells

Any time you’re in Fallgrim Tower, you can step into any shell you’ve found just by visiting their body in the tomb. If you’re out in the world and want to change, you have another option.

Each shell has an associated Effigy, consumable items you’ll find in chests or as drops when you kill enemies. They appear as Unknown Effigy until you use them and figure out what shell they’re associated with.

Using an Effigy of Harros, Solomon, Eredrim, or Tiel will swap you into that shell wherever you are.