Do you need to play Hades 1 before Hades 2?

Do you need to play Hades 1 before Hades 2?
Images via Supergiant Games

Written by 

Joshua Boyles


10th May 2024 17:23


  • You can understand the story and gameplay of Hades 2 without having played Hades 1
  • However, you should consider playing Hades 1 first anyway as it's a fantastic game in its own right

As a direct sequel to one of 2020’s best games, Hades 2 has hit the early access scene with a helluva bang. Sharing lots of DNA with its predecessor as well as much of its cast, new players are likely to wonder whether they need to play the first Hades game before jumping into the new one.

I absolutely adored the first Hades game, and have already poured almost 10 hours into Hades 2. So, let me walk you through whether you should play the last Hades game before playing this one.

Do you need to play Hades 1 first?

Put simply, no - you absolutely don’t need to play the first Hades game if you’re curious about jumping into 2. While the gameplay mechanics are very similar, Hades 2 does a fantastic job of explaining them to newcomers. I hadn’t played the last game for a couple of years before jumping into the new title, and I managed to pick things up extremely quickly thanks to the excellent tutorial.

There’s a little bit of story that carries over from the first game, but for the most part, Hades 2’s narrative stands on its own two feet. It has an entirely new protagonist, and while there are references to the events of the first game, none of them are pivotal to the main plot of Hades 2.

Should you play Hades 1 first?

Hades 1 gameplay
Click to enlarge

While you might be able to play Hades 2 without playing the first game, the question you should really be asking is if you should give the last game a go. The answer to that is, emphatically, yes.

The original Hades is largely lauded as one of the best roguelike games of our generation, combining enthralling combat with an engaging narrative in a package that’s equally punishing as it is enjoyable.

While the story of Hades 2 is quite far removed from the events of the first game, you’ll benefit from knowing quite a bit of backstory with regards to this imagining of the Greek Pantheon. A lot of the characters carry over to Hades 2, so it pays to have had conversations with them all previously through Zagreus.

What’s more, Hades 2 is still only in early access. Don’t get me wrong, there's plenty of content to enjoy there already, but it is, by definition, unfinished. Meanwhile, the original Hades is a fully-fledged game, complete with all the weapons, characters, and lines of dialogue that Supergiant Games intended it to have.

I've also found that Hades 2 is a little more challenging than the first Hades, with a few more systems to think about in terms of gameplay. Playing a bunch of the first game will at least get you familiar with how the flow of combat works, so the learning curve will be a little less steep when you hop into the sequel.

It’s also regularly on sale, so it’s highly likely that you’ll be able to experience a bit of what Hades has to offer for a lot cheaper than if you were to go for the current version of Hades 2.

It’s ultimately up to you if you want to dive into Hades 2 before you play the first game - if you even want to try playing Hades 1 at all. However, from someone who’s poured countless hours into the original game, I’d implore you to give it a go first.

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For more helpful Hades 2 guides, keep reading GGRecon. We’ve also covered how to beat the first two bosses, Headmistress Hecate and the Sirens, whether you should use God Mode, how to fish, and how Arcana Cards work.

Joshua Boyles
About the author
Joshua Boyles
Joshua is the Guides Editor at GGRecon. After graduating with a BA (Hons) degree in Broadcast Journalism, he previously wrote for publications such as FragHero and GameByte. You can often find him diving deep into fantasy RPGs such as Skyrim and The Witcher, or tearing it up in Call of Duty and Battlefield. He's also often spotted hiking in the wilderness, usually blasting Arctic Monkeys.
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