[Update: 8/6/18 – Updated to reflect the current launch version of the game.]
Runes provide permanent upgrades to your movement abilities in Dead Cells — which is a pretty welcome reprieve from the constant suffering of rogue-likes. If you’re looking for ways to climb walls or smash through weak floors, teleport or use goo piles, you’ll want to collect all four essential upgrades. If only the Spider Rune wasn’t so incredibly difficult for newbies to get.
Thankfully, there are some tactics you can use to get the Spider Rune with minimum effort. Even if you’re bad at the game, the diabolical second boss, The Watcher, is still completely beatable with the right amount of preparation. All of its phases have tactics to counter. And that’s assuming you even know how to reach the Watcher. Below, we’ll go over where to get the runes, which routes to take, and how to defeat the big bad Watcher.
More Dead Cells guides on Gameranx:
- Dead Cells: How To Find Keys & Cash In The Promenade | Secrets Guide
- Dead Cells: All Weapons Guide
- Dead Cells: All Skills & Spells Guide
How To Get Every Rune | Tips & Tricks Guide
The Ram Rune allows you to break through weak floors, while the Spider Rune makes it so your character can stick to walls. Both are required to reach certain areas in the randomly-generated maze — and you’ll need to get the Ram Rune before the Spider Rune.
The vine rune allows you to interact with clumps on the ground. Interacting turns these clumps into climbable vines.
- How to Get the Vine Rune:
- Defeat an Elite enemy in the Promenade of the Condemned. Look for a rune with a large stone.
- The Promenade is the second area, available when you leave the spawn zone.
Found those strange coffin-shaped objects? You can use them with the teleportation stone, transporting you to a connecting coffin instantly.
- How to Get the Teleportation Rune:
- Defeat an Elite monster in the Toxic Sewers.
- From the Prisoners’ Cells, use the Vine Rune to access the entrance to the Toxic Sewers. Use the rune on the strange piles of goo.
The ram rune allows you to smash through the floors marked with a glowing rune.
- How to Get the Ram Rune:
- Defeat an Elite monster in the Ossuary.
- To reach the Ossuary, leave the Prisoners’ Cells and enter the Promenade of the Condemned. From the Promenade, use the Teleport Rune on the open coffin to reach the Ossuary.
The spider rune is the last special movement ability rune. This allows you to wall-jump and wall-climb.
- How to Get the Spider Rune:
- Defeat the Elite monster in the Slumbering Sanctuary.
- To reach the Slumbering Sanctuary, you’ll have to pass through the Insufferable Crypt, where the Watcher boss awaits. We’ll go over tips and tricks for defeating the Watcher boss below.
- From the Prisoners’ Cells, go to the Toxic Crypt (Vine Rune entrance) and down to the Old Sewers. Break through the floor in the Old Sewers with the Ram Rune to reach the Insufferable Crypt. Defeat the boss to gain access to the Slumbering Sanctuary.
How to Beat The Watcher
The Watcher is a tough nut to crack, even if you’re an experienced Dead Cells player. The boss has two phases that it repeats three times — one where it floats in the sky and rains down toxic arrows, and one where it floats low and summons tentacles to attack you.
- Required Equipment:
- Bear Traps (To catch tentacles during the ground phase.)
- A Shield (One you can hold and use to protect yourself during the arrow phase.)
When the boss is shooting you with arrows, attack the boss itself when it’s low to the ground. When you can’t dodge arrows anymore, wedge yourself against the entrance wall and raise your shield to lower the amount of damage you take.
When the boss is summoning tentacles, wait near the entrance door and drop the bear trap to catch the tentacle that sweeps across the floor. Wipe out the tentacles, then rinse and repeat.
Turrets and Ice / Ivy Grenades will also help. Drop a turret during the arrow phase, and use grenades on the tentacle phase to stop any incoming tentacles. It also helps to bring Green / Purple rarity weapons. Work on improving Survival as you progress for the best possible chance at this boss.