clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

The Surge guide: 10 tips to keep you alive longer

10 ways to die less and increase your power.

Deck13 Interactive/Focus Home Interactive

The Surge is a game that wears its influences on its sleeves. If you have played games like Dark Souls, Bloodborne or even developer Deck 13’s last game, Lords of the Fallen, you should be fairly familiar with most of the game’s systems. That being said, there are a few places where The Surge really sets itself apart from its peers. Here are 10 quick tips to help keep you alive longer and increase your power.

Attack to remove fall damage

The Surge has fall damage in most cases. However, there is a trick to easily avoid losing health to silly traversal mistakes. If you attack at any point while in the air, you will make a downward strike. As long as you aren’t falling into a pit, which will kill you regardless of your height, the strike animation will save you from damage upon landing. This is true even if there is no enemy below you.

Keep in mind the parts you need and attack those limbs

A look at the crafting screen

Crafting in The Surge is a fairly involved process. Not only do you need the schematics of every piece you want to build, but you need the parts as well. The schematics are simple enough. Chop off the specific arms, legs, body or head armor that you want.

When you pick up a piece for the first time, you will be given the schematics. While the schematics are tied to individual pieces of armor, the parts are not. All arm pieces use the same parts and the same is true for all other armor. If you are trying to finish out your armor set and all you need now is the arms, attack the armored arms of every enemy you see. No matter what armor set they are using, the parts that they drop can always be used to upgrade your current gear.

Follow the pipes

An overcharge station, complete with red pipe

Using your Core Power to overcharge systems is a key part to navigating The Surge’s world. While some overcharge stations are very close to the location that they affect, some are not. When activating any overcharge points or using any door switches, look for the big red pipe next to them. If you follow that pipe, it will always take you to your new destination.

As you go through the beginning of the game, you will also find plenty of places that have a Core Power requirement that is far too high for you. If you want to upgrade your weapons to the maximum level, remember these places. You can come back here a little later.

Break everything

In The Surge, there are boxes everywhere. Jump and smash your way through them to find additional Tech Scrap. There are also a few places in the game where you can upgrade your rig to get more implant sockets, giving you even more perks to play with.

The rigs are hidden behind breakable objects, so break all the glass cases you see as well. These upgrades are massive and can really help your survive. The better the rig you have, the more implants you can have active at once. The more implants you have active, the more customization you have at your finger tips. If you see something that isn’t broken yet, remedy that, and reap the rewards.

Dash-strike is your friend

The Surge’s combat system allows for a lot of varied combos. One of the strongest moves in your arsenal is the dash-strike. This is very simple to execute. Use the dash and attack button simultaneously, and you will slide forward into a quick swing. This is very helpful on a variety of bosses, as well as enemies that are a little too scary to get up close and personal with. Dash-strike and dash back out. Repeat this process until everything around you is dead.

Stick to your preferred weapon type early

A look at the stat screen and weapon proficiency

Rather than having specific stats like strength and dexterity, The Surge opts for a weapon proficiency system. The more you hit stuff with a certain type of weapon, the better you get at using that type. The game has five different types of weapons: one-handed, staff, heavy-duty, single-rigged and twin-rigged.

Each individual weapon has a scaling level as well, ranging from very high to very low. This determines how much your weapon proficiency will increase your damage with that particular piece of weaponry. It is crucial that you find a type of weapon that you like early on and stick with it. You will eventually find a high or very high scaling weapon in your chosen archetype.

The Surge does punish you if you choose to switch types partway through. You will spend a great deal of time dealing less damage while you attempt to catch up. Try out the first few weapons you get, choose a type and never look back.

Use implants to fix your problems

You can’t really upgrade your damage or stamina by leveling up in The Surge. Instead of putting individual points into stats, you use implants to help you out. Your healing items, additional health, additional stamina — even your active abilities are all tied to implants.

If you are running out of healing items, take out something you don’t need and add more of them to your arsenal. You can even replace your healing items with items that heal over time and many other options. If you need more stamina, put in a stamina module. The system allows you to fix your flaws at any moment. You are never locked into a set build. Experiment frequently and find a build that works for you.

Energy is for more than cutting

Speaking of implants, your energy meter is useful for more than just cutting off the limbs of your near-death foes. Using the implant system, you can tie all sorts of other things to your energy bar. From your drone’s abilities to a temporary increase in overall damage, spending energy liberally can help you out of a bind.

Next time you get in a fight, ask yourself if you really need that piece of armor. Perhaps the energy that you were going to spend chopping off that guys leg could be better spent on a energy to health conversion model.

Use your drone to take on one enemy at a time

You will get your drone at the start of the game’s second area. At first, this thing may not seem particularly useful. However, as you go forward, its ability to shoot lasers from afar will save you countless times.

If you have no energy when you fire your drone, its shots will only do one damage. You can use this to aggravate enemies that are far away, pulling them away from their friends. If you have died a couple of times to a large pack of wild enemies, try using your drone to take them on one at a time.

Explore every area

Every area in The Surge folds in on itself in a creative, new way. There are tons of shortcuts to be discovered everywhere you go. The game gives you no map, so you will have to keep track of everything yourself. When you see a fork in the road, go a little into both areas. More often than not, one fork will be a shortcut returning you to that area’s MedBay.

The more shortcuts you unlock, the easier it will be to return to your previous location if you die or need to take a break. Open every door you see and remember everywhere that you go.

Sign up for the newsletter Sign up for Patch Notes

A weekly roundup of the best things from Polygon