The Callisto Protocol is not for the feint hearted. This sci-fi horror will have players guiding Jacob Lee out of Black Iron Prison. With an alien virus running rampant, you will have to battle through a horde of Biophages with little health and resources. As Dead Space’s spiritual successor, this won’t be an easy jail break. Here are my top tips to keep you alive that bit longer.
Search And Explore
Exploration in horror games isn’t always easy. In fact, you can be deterred from doing so as the branching corridor is sheathed in darkness and spooky noises are echoing down it. However, you cannot shy away from exploration in Callisto Protocol. Instead of always following the main route, check each area for a divergent path. By looking for these and exploring them you will find goodies to sell, weapon blueprints and more health and ammo. These paths always loop around so you won’t need to worry about backtracking afterward.
Searching, sounds like an obvious top tip. But what I mean is, make sure you break the glass. In areas you will find wall to wall cabinets. There are often goodies hiding inside of these. For an easy win, equip your baton and smash the glass. Then you can get all the loot. Sometimes it can be hard to see these items due to the amazing reflective lighting, so a close-up inspection is often needed.
Also, there are blue boxes scattered throughout the levels which are always out of reach. These are easy to spot, thanks to their neon nature. Make sure you grab these with your GRP ability and bring them down to your level. A quick stomp later and you will be rewarded.
As resources are scarce, make sure you follow these exploration and searching tips to maximise your bullet count, healing injectors, batteries and items to sell.
If you have ever played Dead Space, stomping will be second nature. In Callisto Protocol, stomping enemies will reward you with health or items. It can be an easy mechanic to forget, but make sure you stomp everything once its dead.
Also, stomping can stop you burning through healing injectors. After a fight, before you heal, make sure you stomp all the enemies you have dispatched. Most of the time these enemies will drop +25 health which will restore Jacob automatically. These health bonuses cannot be stored; if you use an injector before stomping, you could miss out on lots of free health.
Shoot The Tentacles
As you progress through the game, enemies will start to mutate. During fights they will start growing tentacles. When this happens, you have limited time before the enemy will transform into a harder and stronger Biophage to defeat.
As soon as enemies grow tentacles, knock them back with your baton, and then aim for the tentacles. Shooting these will stop them turning but also kill them instantly. It’s a great way to dispatch them quickly and stop you fighting a tougher enemy.
The best thing about this game is how you can use the environment to your advantage. With spinning blades, spiky walls and jaw dropping falls, you can use these to survive.
Once players attain the GRP device, you can use it to pull Biophages towards you and then launch them. Using this, you can launch them at spiky walls and spinning blades for gruesome insta deaths. You can also throw them into the abyss which is satisfying. Using the environment not only saves you ammo, but it also saves your health as you won’t take any damage. When you have a lot of enemies to contend with, this method helps with crowd control as you get rid of a few quickly.
The only issue with environmental kills is you cannot stomp the bodies. Once they are on a wall, in the abyss or blitzed into pieces you have nothing to stomp. This means you can lose out on some loot, so use it when you need to.
As these kills rely on the GRP, make sure you have a battery pack in your inventory so the GRP charges quicker than its 4-minute cooldown.
Forget About Headshots
Getting a headshot is always satisfying. However, Callisto Protocol isn’t about headshots. In fact, shooting a Biophage’s head off won’t accomplish anything. Most of the time they keep running at you and attack. Instead, you will have to go against your gamer instincts and aim for their legs.
Shooting their legs will stop them from running and if you manage to shoot them off this will slow them down even more. Crawling enemies are easier to take out. You can also aim for the arms to stop them hitting you.
So, forget about epic headshots and aim for their legs to slow them down!
During the game of The Callisto Protocol, you will be able to purchase upgrades for your weapons. Yet, the further you progress the more expensive these will become. You won’t be able to buy every upgrade in the game before the credits roll. Therefore, you have to prioritise spending.
The 2 upgrade paths you should focus on first are the baton and GRP ones. The baton is your main melee weapon and will be your last line of defence when the enemies get close, and you run out of bullets. Invest in the heavy attack as soon as you can so you can deal with tougher enemies.
The GRP, will help you pace combat and make use of environmental deathtraps. Focus on improving the GRP’s recharge time and energy capacity. Focusing on these mean you won’t be stuck without during intense combat encounters. With your GRP recharge upgraded you won’t have an inventory full of batteries either.
When it comes to upgrading your guns, it depends which ones you prefer. Most of the guns work the same. I always go for the Hand Cannon and Skunk Gun. Mainly because you pick these up in the early game which makes it easier to save and maximise spending.
However, for those who love the Shotgun, make sure you pick up the alternate fire upgrade. This will have you blasting through Biophages with explosive rounds.
There are a few guns you will find over the course of the game. Make sure you explore lots as you will find schematics littered throughout the map.
Each gun will help you throughout your run-through. The ones you use will be down to how you like to play. What I will say is, make sure you choose a favourite 2. Due to upgrade costs, you won’t be able to fully upgrade your arsenal. To make sure you are getting the most out of your guns, focus on 2 to make them worthwhile. If you split your attention across all of them, you will end up with a variety of mediocre weapons. This won’t be great when you are battling 2 headed Biophages later in the game.
My personal favourites are the Skunk Gun and the Hand Cannon. Both of these guns can be acquired early on. If you explore you can find the Skunk Gun schematic which makes its Reforge cost much cheaper.
The Skunk Gun packs a punch. When shooting enemies, you will stagger them for a few seconds. This will help you control the flow of battle. Whilst stunned you can get a few melee shots in, launch them with the GRP or shoot some tentacles. Once you have snagged the damage upgrade you can also dispatch enemies in 2 shots! The alternate fire upgrade isn’t the best with this weapon and can be skipped.
The Hand Cannon is the first gun you get which means it is the easiest to upgrade to the max. Its alternate ammo upgrade makes it overpowered and a great addition to the arsenal. As this gun shares a space with The Skunk Gun it would be best practice to choose one over the other, but I kept them both and endured Jacob’s animation change. As a backup the assault rifle is a great crowd controller but is picked up later on in the game.
Now this might be a strange one but hear me out. Usually, narrative games are very good at autosaving often. Most of the time these games don’t even let you save your progress manually. Callisto Protocol is different though. Although, it does autosave throughout, it doesn’t do it as often as you would like. There were many times I was caught out and when the game reloaded, I was miles away from where I had died. This meant I had to go through some gruelling sections again.
To stop this, make sure you use the manual save feature. If you have survived a tough fight and you haven’t seen the autosave appear, head to the pause menu and save it yourself. This will stop you repeating large sections again and again and again.
Inventory space in the Callisto Protocol is minimal. During the first part of the game, you will only have 6 slots to contend with. You will have to be selective when picking up loot as it won’t always fit.
As weapon upgrades can save your skin, as you draw closer to the end of the game, I would make sure you always have room for sellable items. When exploring the map, make sure you pick up energy convertors and decoders. These can be sold at Reforges for lots of credits. Pristine versions of these will sell for a lot more so make sure you don’t sacrifice these.
As bullets don’t stack and your guns only hold 2 per clip, you can’t be an ammo hoarder. With most survival games you hold onto your ammo as long as you can. Ammo in Callisto isn’t that rare, because of this make sure you don’t carry lots but enough for the next few fights. If you aren’t using bullets like you would in Call of Duty, you should be fine with storing just a few back up clips.
Finally, health is important, but I would throw an injector away for a pristine decoder. As health can be found through exploration and stomping enemies, don’t choose this over a sellable item.
Crank Up The Volume
Callisto Protocol makes great use of its sound design. This game is bursting with atmosphere. I would suggest turning up the sound or playing with headphones on. It will add to the horror, but it will also help you survive.
Having louder sound will help you dodge as you can hear when Biophages will attack, and it will warn you about approaching enemies.
Hopefully, these tips will stop you viewing the loading screen after countless deaths. Equip your baton, recharge your GRP and, of course, SHOOT THE TENTACLES.