Hades 2: Complete Arcana Card Guide

Everything you need to know about arcana cards in Hades 2 right here!

Hades 2 has been out on early access for quite a while now, and it has a ton of new features that further add to the customizability of your RNG-laden runs. Among the new additions that they are still fleshing out (early access, remember?) are the arcana cards, and in this guide, we will be showing you what they do!

Complete Arcana Card Guide

As with most other roguelite games, Hades 2 has a variety of meta progression systems, and arcana cards add another layer of build customization that you can explore. How does it work, though?

Well, first you will have to unlock them at the Altar of Ashes. There is a lot of grinding involved with this process, so take your time and unlock them one by one until you have a complete collection to choose from.

Activating an arcana card will give you varying passive bonuses throughout your runs. These can range from improved damage dealing capabilities to small heals after each location, among many other effects.

Once you have a bunch of arcana cards available for use, you will have to consider another resource known as grasp. Basically, each card has a grasp cost in order to activate their effects, and you start out with just a small amount.

We actually have a more in-depth guide on how to increase your grasp in Hades 2, which you should definitely check out as well while you are grinding up your collection of cards!

Hades 2 Melinoe standing in the training grounds

Eventually, with the help of a certain incantation, you can also start upgrading arcana cards to improve their effects. Not only will this passively improve your build, but it also won’t affect how much grasp you need overall.

Check out our guide on how to get Moon Dust too, because you’re going to need a lot of this resource to actually start upgrading your cards!

Hades 2 arcana card selection interface

What Are the Current Choices / Which Ones to Pick?

Now that we’ve covered the basics of how these arcana cards function, let’s go through what every single one of them can do! Before we list them down, however, do note that this game is still in early access.

If my experience with the first game is any indication, anything could change over time, including the effects of certain cards. In fact, they seem to be using placeholder art for them at the moment, so expect things to shift around later on.a

There are currently 25 arcana cards in the early access version of Hades 2, and they are the following: 

  • I. The Sorceress – Time will slow down for a few seconds (varied duration based on upgrades) as you channel your Omega moves.
  • II. Wayward Son – Upon leaving a location, you will restore a varying amount of health. This effect is doubled if you have less than 30% of your health remaining.
  • III. The Huntress – While under 100% Magick, your attacks and special will deal bonus damage.
  • IV. Death – Your Omega moves will have a small chance of dealing critical damage.
  • V. The Messenger – Gives you a 6% chance to dodge.
  • VI. The Furies – Deal 30% bonus damage to enemies in your Casts.
  • VII. The Titan – Grants you 20% bonus health and Magick.
  • VIII. The Unseen – Restore 2 Magick every single second.
  • IX. Night – Your Hex will charge up over time as if you have been spending 2 Magick every second.
  • X. The Lovers – During a fight with a Guardian, you will take no damage on the first hit.
  • XI. The Swift Runner – Increases the speed of your sprint by 20%.
  • XII. Eternity – Gives you a free Death Defiance at the start of your run.
  • XIII. The Centaur – After every 5 locations, you will gain +3 health and Magick.
  • XIV. The Moon – Your Omega casts will have bonus power whenever it detonates.
  • XV. Strength – While your health is over 30%, you will take less damage and deal more at the same time.
  • XVI. The Fates – Start each run with at least one free Change of Fate.
  • XVII. The Boatman – Start each run with an additional gold.
  • XVIII. Origination – Deal bonus damage to enemies that are afflicted with at least two curses.
  • XIX. Excellence – Boons that are offered to you will have a 30% chance of being upgraded to Rare.
  • XX. The Queen – Boons that are offered to you will have a small chance of becoming a Duo, assuming that it is currently possible.
  • XXI. The Seer – Start each run with multiple charges of Change of Fate
  • XXII. The Champions – Start each run with at least one Change of Fate that can alter boons.
  • XXIII. The Artificer – Start each run with a chance to turn a minor find into a random major find.
  • XXIV. Divinity – Any boons that are offered to you will have a small chance of being upgraded to Epic.
  • XXV. Judgement – Upon defeating a Guardian, activate multiple random arcana cards that have not been turned on for the run.

And those are all of the current arcana cards implemented in the game. As for what exactly are the best options, that’s going to rely solely on your preferred build. Alternatively, you can not use them for an extra challenging run (probably don’t do that, though).

Speaking of builds, check out our best cast build guide for Hades 2 as well. It utilizes a lot of arcana cards and give you a better idea of how various things synergize with one another!

Hades 2 fighting Hecate with a caster build

One general recommendation is to use Eternity if you are still pretty new to this type of game. This will give you a second chance if you screw up a little too much in a run, and it can make a massive difference if you make a lethal mistake during a boss fight.

The Titan is also a good choice overall as it is a very straightforward passive buff that you can never go wrong with. The Wayward Son is okay too if you find yourself taking stray hits a little too often, though ideally, you shouldn’t be taking damage in the first place.

That is pretty much everything you need to know at the moment when it comes to the arcana card system in this early version of the game. While you are here, if you’re still new to the game, check out our guide on all of the regions in Hades 2 as well to better understand how to navigate the game’s world.


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