Dead Cells has a new difficulty curve and more mutations to play with

The free Whack-a-Mole update is available on PC and consoles

[[Update profile: Dead Cells Whack-a-Mole update released today on PS4, Xbox One, and Nintendo Switch.]

New weapons? More mutations? Impactful balance tweaks? Where do your eyes go when you scan the patch notes for a major Dead Cells update? It probably depends on your goals for the game and where you are at. For people stuck in Boss Cell hell, the revamped difficulty curve is a big deal.

In today's Whack-a-Mole update on PC, the difficulty of Dead Cells has been rebalanced again:

  • BC0: Fountains of health at every transition.
  • BC1: Fountain of health every two transitions, with a small vial when the fountain is missing.
  • BC2: No more fountain of health, a minor flask at each transition.
  • BC3: A small bottle after the first boss and before the second.
  • BC4: No more health in any transition, enemies teleport to your position.
  • BC5: More health, teleport enemies, unease added.

For those who haven't been following lately, these changes are meant to make things "easier".

Elsewhere in the Whack-a-Mole update, we get three fun, brawny weapons: a tomb stone, a last hit-chaining oven ax, and a club waiting to load called the Toothpick.

There are also three tempting mutations to ponder, two of which speak to me as a tactics player:

  • Without mercy (colorless): Instantly kill enemies that are under 15% health – and bosses under 7,5% health – by hitting them with a weapon.
  • Barbed ends (tactics): deal damage per second to enemies based on the number of arrows stuck in it.
  • Point Blank (tactics): close-range attacks have bonus scale damage.

So uh... I think the barbed tips might be a little broken. from r/deadcells

How to unlock the new mutations and weapons? These are drops! According to the wiki, you can get No Mercy from Slashers, Barbed Tips from Toxic Miasmas, Point Blank from Corpulent Zombies, Tombstone from Swarm Zombies, Oven Ax from Oven Knights, and Toothpick from Ground Shakers.

The team tried to permanently eliminate seed-related crashes, tweaked the Malaise mechanic (including new icons to "give you a better idea of ​​what's going to hit you"), and made sure items Legendary status is scaled "based on the sum of your two highest stats" and Legendary status does not increase an item's level. That said, these last two tweaks are “very subject to change.” Dead Cells does not stand still.

As always, it's worth poking around to see the details. For example, it might not be a headliner for many players, but a new accessibility-focused hold-to-chain attack toggle looks pretty sweet.

As noted on Reddit, the Whack-a-Mole update should be ready for consoles in the next three to four weeks. If you're a mobile Dead Cells gamer, this version just got The Bad Seed DLC – $3,99.

Back to the grind, here we go!

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