Tunic is a game filled with secrets and challenges. While we don’t want to spoil any of the secrets, we do want you to survive long enough to get to them, as they’re some of the most rewarding moments in any game you can play at the moment.
To that effect we’ve put together a few tips for people starting out in the game, covering combat, which might be an early sticking point, but also a few ideas for approaching this mysterious and mesmerising world. We hope they come in handy!
Tunic tips for beginners
Below you’ll find some tips to help you get started in the world of Tunic:
When it comes to combat, don’t just rush in
There is a rhythm to Tunic’s combat, or rather a series of rhythms. Don’t just flail away when you meet a new foe – learn their specific timings, focusing on when they’re about to attack and the moment afterwards when they’re left wide open. Pay particular attention to enemies with shields – can you find the right moment to strike? Or can you dodge roll around behind them to get in a few free hits?
Don’t let enemies gang up
It can be tempting to rush through a new area and try to outrun the enemies, but the chances are good that you’ll end up kiting a death mob behind you. Much better to take it slow and finish off safe groups of baddies in the twos and threes they tend to appear in. Tidy as you work, basically.
And if they do gang up on you, keep moving – there’s a good chance they may start to damage each other by accident. This is particularly true of the laser drones you meet in the first few hours.
And if it’s too much – there is no fail mode
The accessibility menu is your friend. There’s no penalty for turning off the stamina meter or even selecting the no fail mode, which means you will take no damage. Towards the end of the game there’s a couple of truly monumental difficulty spikes – remember that you can turn no-fail on, and then turn it off again when you’re over a hump.
No fail mode is a reminder that games should be accessible to all players, and also that combat is only one of Tunic’s challenges – and maybe not the primary challenge!
If you’re battling those alligator-type things and you haven’t levelled up yet, get to one of the fox shrines and open your inventory.
The chances are you’ve collected some of the items that allow you to permanently boost your stats at these shrines – if you can pay for the boost. This is all explained in the manual, but it isn’t explained in the moment-to-moment game itself. Be aware: you won’t get very far with starting stats in Tunic.
Look behind things!
Look behind things as you move through the world. Tunic uses its isometric design to hide things just out of view. Chests, certainly, but also entrances to caves and passageways. Always check behind the lips of rock or earth that might be blocking a view of something cool. You won’t regret it.
Know when you’re looking at something you do not understand yet
Have you found those tuning fork things sticking out of the ground in the first areas of Tunic? How about the big yellow squares on the ground? If you’ve just started playing, ignore them for now.
Tunic is full of stuff that will make sense at a later point in the game – you’ll get an item, perhaps, or you’ll discover a new way of thinking. This means, for the first few hours, feel free to breeze past anything whose meaning is not immediately apparent. You’ll be coming back later better equipped to understand it.
Equally, if there’s a path you can see but can’t get to yet, there’s probably a reason for that – kit missing, or maybe it’s the exit path out of the area you’re currently in.
Don’t be afraid to follow your nose
With a game like Tunic, which explains so little of itself, it can be hard at times to work out where to go next.
While there’s no easy solution to these moments where you simply don’t know what to do, a good approach is to wander – explore the edges of the landscapes you can already move around, and follow paths as far as they will take you. Returning to old areas with new abilities will often open up new paths and lead to new treats, and time spent exploring in a game like Tunic is never time wasted.
The final tip is to look at the manual, whose pages you collect as you move around. The manual is filled with tips for playing, but it’s also worth looking at the gaps in the pages you’ve collected – what are you missing, and where might you go to find it? In Tunic, every kind of reasoning and every kind of deductive move is worth trying.
Good luck in Tunic!