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The Best Skills To Unlock ASAP

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The Best Skills To Unlock ASAP

Another Crab’s Treasure is out now, filling the hole in our hearts left by Dark Souls and Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice. Don’t let its cute looks deceive you: this game can be tough, especially if you don’t collect the crystals around the world and use them to unlock some necessary and very helpful skills.

Is this a safe space? Can I admit something really dumb? I played about half of the game without unlocking any skills. I kept thinking, “When is the game going to introduce the parry mechanic I used in the demos?” I also kept thinking, “Jesus fucking Christ, this game is brutal, how long is it going to make me wait to unlock any additional abilities?” The answer, dear readers, is that you can unlock skills as soon as you meet the Moon Snail in their domain. You need to go back to the Moon Snail to level up though, even though you can see your skill tree from the main menu.

I had to learn this the hard way so that you don’t. Now that I’ve hopefully earned your respect, laughs, and maybe even some of your pity, here’s some game-changing skills you need to unlock as soon as you get the chance.

Parry

I don’t love that Another Crab’s Treasure locks what feels like necessary mechanics behind the skill tree, even if some of them are the easiest and cheapest abilities to obtain. This is especially true of the parry, as well as the next skill on this list, which feel like they should’ve been part of the baseline mechanics available at your disposal. Parries are the crux of many of Another Crab’s Treasure’s biggest influences, like Sekiro, and unsurprisingly they are just as crucial here.

Until the parry skill is unlocked, players can only hide in their shells by using the guard button at the cost of their shell’s health. Upon getting the parry, a well-timed release of the guard button (right before an enemy attack lands) will perfectly parry opponents, temporarily stunning them and mitigating all shell damage. This short stun window would be a perfect time for a follow up attack…

Riposte

As I mentioned above, some skills that need unlocking should’ve probably been baked into the mechanics readily available at the start, and the riposte is another example of that. What good is a parry if you can’t follow up with a good riposte, after all? This skill’s necessity should probably explain itself, so when you see the Moon Snail, tell them I say “what’s good,” and make the parry and riposte the first few skills you spend your hard-earned crystals on.

Self Repair

On the off chance that you’re struggling getting the parry timing down, or you just like to sit in your shell and eat that damage, you’re going to want to invest in Self Repair, a skill that takes a page from one of the greatest games to ever exist: Bloodborne. In that game, players were able to regain a portion of their health by immediately attacking enemies after they were hit. Self Repair functions exactly like this, except that it won’t recover Kril’s health, only the health of the shell, which is tied to its own HP bar. Pairing this skill with particularly beefy shells and a mix of perfect parries will practically render the need to swap between shells pointless. This is how you become the one true crab to rule them all with an iron claw.

Housewarming

Another Crab’s Treasure’s skill tree is broken into a few branches along three main paths: the Way of the Hermit, the Way of the Predator, and the Way of the True Crab. The Hermit path focuses on Umami (this game’s version of magic) and evasiveness, and the Housewarming skill prioritizes the former in a major way. Umami shell spells—magic abilities tied to the shell you’re actively using—and super moves called Adaptations both use Umami charges, which can be increased throughout the game. Early on though, you’re going to have very few Umami charges at your disposal, so you should do everything to cut back on their usage.

Housewarming allows players to use any shell’s given spell once without using an Umami charge, which can be clutch in tight situations where they need to save Umami for an Adaptation or to spam spells. Given that shells are littered literally all over the game, including every boss fight, this skill can be taken advantage of very easily, and at little to no cost for savvy players who bounce between shells. Speaking of which…

Scrap Hammer

I swear I didn’t plan these transitions but they just happened to work out. So players will be able to upgrade their damage via a number of methods, including leveling up the attack stat, equipping damage-buffing Stowaways (think of Hollow Knight’s charm system, complete with purchasable slots), and upgrading Kril’s fork at the smith in New Carcinia. The skill tree mostly rewards players with new attacks, but one particular skill actually accomplishes this and upgrades your damage output by a lot. It also allows players to effectively wield two shells and their abilities at any given time. Say hello to Scrap Hammer, your new best friend.

Scrap Hammer allows Kril to use a charge attack to skewer any shell in the game, adding it as a damage modifier to the base weapon. At any point, players can hold down on the d-pad to swap between the shell on their back and the one on their weapon, allowing you to have two shells at the same time. The weight and defensive stats of these shells factor into the damage and effectiveness of the weapon, but across the board players will be doing more damage than ever before. The tradeoff is that swinging the modified fork (regardless of the shell’s weight class) becomes universally slower than the base attack, but with the right timing and some careful guarding and parrying, this won’t even matter. Unlocking Scrap Hammer cracked the game wide open for me, and I assure you it’ll do the same for you. Don’t go too long without it if you can help it.

If you clocked the mention of fat rolling with a Zweihander equivalent in my review of the game, this is the skill that made that possible.


Those are Another Crab’s Treasure’s most essential skills in my humble opinion. Unlocking them made all the difference in the game’s difficulty, and again, I beat half of this game without any of them. If there’s ever been an authority on how to make this hard game much easier for yourself, I’m that guy. Now go forth, get your shells, and crush your foes with a charged Scrap Hammer attack on me.

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