There are a wide range of skills to master within Styx: Shards of Darkness, as you journey across a dangerous path filled with tough adversaries looking to put an end to the goblin race. Each ability is divided across five different skill trees, including Perception, Cloning, Alchemy, Kill and the Stealth tree. Don’t worry about which skill tree you should max out first, as you’ll have the option to switch your skill points between different abilities at any given skill table. Assuming you use this to your advantage, it will allow for a unique gameplay experience between each level.
As a beginner, you may accidentally obtain a skill that isn’t as convenient towards your playstyle and later come to regret it. In order to maximize the usefulness of your abilities, you’ll need to think wisely before spending those hard-earned skill points. Some players will enjoy spending the majority of their points on the Kill tree, while others seeking a more quiet approach will likely optimize the Stealth tree to accommodate their needs.
In this guide, we’ve picked an assortment of the best skills and upgrades to level in Styx: Shards of Darkness. Whether or not you have a particular playstyle, there’s not much that can go wrong with the list below.
One of my favorite abilities in Shards of Darkness is the cloning feature. Styx can make a replica of himself and remotely control it from a distance. By obtaining the Cocoon skill, Styx will learn the ability to craft cocoons and throw them across a great distance. From there, your clone will emerge from the cocoon once it’s hatched. I’ve found this to be a useful skill when distracting guards with my clone in order to sneak around an extended area.
You can gain additional use out of this skill by purchasing the Rebirth skill. With Rebirth, Styx will instantly recreate himself at his clone’s position. You can use this skill to safely teleport away from guards or reach faraway places. The best way to use these two skills in conjunction with each other is by throwing a cocoon, emerging a clone and then teleporting to the clone if Styx is in danger.
Another handy addition to the list of skills in Shards of Darkness is Predation, due to its sly nature and quick execution. If Styx is hiding inside a chest or cupboard, he can instantly kill an enemy walking past with a single tap. Upon using this ability, Styx will emerge from hiding and can be seen by other enemies within the vicinity. The best way to utilize this skill is by patiently waiting for a single enemy to approach before striking down.
The downside of obtaining this skill is the time spent getting to it. For the most part, it’s a late-game skill. You’ll end up spending over 500 skill points just to reach Predation and then spend another 240 points to obtain it. The route I recommend taking is to purchase Flying Killer, Pilfering and the Elite Thrower skill before you grab Predation. I did not find much use out of the skills located on the right-hand side of the Kill skill tree.
Styx has the luxury to cloak himself and gain a temporary boost of invisibility. Unfortunately it requires an abundance of amber on deck. Luckily for us, there is the Persistence skill, which helps reduce the amount of amber required to undergo invisibility by increasing its duration. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve gone invisible, only to become visible on accident amidst a large group of guards patrolling a corridor….until I discovered the Persistence skill.
When you’re ready to add more skills to the Stealth tree, I suggest checking out the Feline skill which lets you silently drop down on foes and avoid alerting nearby guards. It’s best to use Feline when you’re looking for a shortcut to the lower deck. Additionally, Styx will take reduced damage when falling from heights. This will help resist the urge to chug a health vial after making a large drop.
2. Amber Distiller
The Amber Distiller skill goes hand in hand with the Persistence skill. Located at the heart of the Alchemy skill tree, Amber Distiller lets you craft your own vials of amber in order to replenish mana. In return, you’re able to continue using magic abilities such as invisibility and cloning. There are numerous vials of amber located throughout each level, so be sure to take your time carefully searching your surroundings.
In order to take full advantage of this skill, I suggest picking up the Thief’s Senses skill from the Perception skill tree. With Thief’s Senses, you are able to sense nearby items up to 5m away. These items are usually hard to find, as they’re carefully placed by the developers in each level. Don’t be afraid to continuously use up your vials of amber in order to regain MP, as you’ll be constantly discovering more vials thanks to this newfound skill.
1. Extended Vision
The utmost important skill in Styx: Shards of Darkness is Extended Vision, which is located inside the Perception skill tree. With Extended Vision enabled, Styx can use his amber vision to sniff out items and enemies from a farther distance. Enemies, items and interactive objects will be highlighted in red. I’m not sure how anyone would be able to survive an entire playthrough without leveling this skill, due to the reason there are guards placed in dimly lit areas which are easy to miss. I tend to play through most of the levels using nothing but stealth and getting seen by a guard would require me to reload the save. If you’re anything like me, the Extended Vision skill will become a necessity.
If you’ve been following this guide, the next skill in line from the Perception skill tree is called Sixth Sense and I highly suggest grabbing it. In addition to the Extended Vision skill, Styx can now use Sixth Sense to detect enemies when he’s near their line of sight. This skill provides a great deal of use to players seeking a pure stealth approach. Amber vision is no longer required to sense nearby enemies, although you should still use it to detect guards from a faraway distance.