Psychonauts 2 gives you a plethora of distinct Psychic Power skills and abilities to experiment with, all of which can be upgraded in various ways using the Psychic Powers menu or by equipping Pins that you can get from the Otto-Matic. However, to get the best experience out of Psychonauts 2, you need to know which upgrades to work towards first. This does, in part, depend on your playstyle, but there are some pins and upgrades that are just too good to ignore. On one hand, these can give you a serious edge in combat as you take down the game’s diverse baddies. And secondly, they will make exploration easier by allowing you to visit previously inaccessible areas. This will be especially helpful in exploration-oriented missions such as the Search for Queepie and the Psychoseismometers quest.
So, whether you’ve just started in the game, or have been playing it for some time now, here are the best ability upgrades and pins that YOU should unlock first in Psychonauts 2.
Best Power Upgrades in Psychonauts 2
These will include the skills and ability upgrades that you can unlock in Psychonauts 2’s manual. To bring up the manual, press M on PC, the Touch Pad on PlayStation, or the Change View button on Xbox. Afterward, make your way to the Psychic Powers section. Here, you should be able to see all your Powers, along with the upgrades that you can unlock for each of them in exchange for Intern Credit.
We will go through all the abilities that we recommend upgrading first for the best Psychonauts 2 experience.
Melee: Dodge Attack
Let’s be honest; you’ll spend a lot of time dodging in combat. The Dodge Attack upgrade, therefore, is a good choice since it allows you to follow up each dodge with a nifty attack. It’s essentially the best combination between attack and defense! This can be especially helpful in later stages of the game when you’ll have to dodge multiple enemy attacks regularly. To perform the move, simply hit the Attack button once you’ve initiated a dodge in any direction. You’ll subsequently see Raz land a fluid kick onto the enemy.
The Ground Pound move is a useful attack to land damage to multiple enemies within a small area. However, unlocking the Shockwave ability will give your Ground Pound some more oomph. Now, every time you use the move, it will be followed up with a small but powerful shockwave. This allows you to damage enemies in a larger radius than before. It will, therefore, be easier to deal with clusters of baddies.
PSI Blast: Overcharge
Sometimes, you just want to keep your distance. That’s where Raz’s PSI Blast power comes in. The Overcharge upgrade improves upon this ability by allowing you to power up your PSI Blast before firing it to deal more damage. All you need to do is hold the PSI Blast button for a second or two, and watch Raz conjure up a mighty psychic projectile. Aim for your target, and release the button to unleash extra damage. This skill will be especially deadly against those pesky little Regrets in Psychonauts 2.
PSI Blast: Chain Brain
How do you further complement your Overcharge ability and make it even stronger? Simple, you unlock the Chain Brain upgrade. This skill makes your PSI Blast projectiles split into smaller pieces on impact, which then do a small amount of area-of-effect damage. This upgrade acts as another boost to your ranged capabilities, ensuring that you can keep threats at a distance when the going gets tough.
Pyrokinesis: Tres Bon Fire
Who doesn’t love a quick barbeque? The Pyrokinesis power is already a strong weapon in your arsenal, allowing you to cook off any baddies that get too close. The Tres Bon Fire upgrade, however, makes this power several times stronger. It allows you to burn enemies in a much larger radius. This is great for when you get swarmed by multiple enemies. All you need to do is hold down the Pyrokinesis button until the bubble swells to its maximum size, and then let it go. This ability will be especially potent against any Doubts you come across in Psychonauts 2, considering how flammable they are.
Levitation: Pouncy Ball
Our next recommendation takes a break from combat and focuses on a very important exploration tool that Raz has – the Levitation Ball. The psychic orb lets you traverse faster and jump farther. Yet, unlocking its full potential requires acquiring the Pouncy Ball upgrade. This ability allows you to jump higher than you can with double jump. Considering the platforming nature of Psychonauts 2, this upgraded skill becomes vital in exploring certain locations. To use it, simply hold the Attack button while using the Levitation Ball, and release it when it has charged up fully to watch Raz rise higher than ever before!
Mental Connection: Dark Thoughts
The Mental Connection ability is useful for grappling onto thought bubbles to reach new locations. However, soon after you’re introduced to the ability by Agent Forsythe, you’ll see some dark blue thought bubbles that can’t be grappled onto like their white counterparts. These are ‘dark thoughts,’ and you need this upgrade before you can latch onto them. Since the thought bubbles can often lead to unattained collectibles, this is a skill you’ll want to upgrade to as soon as you can, especially if you’re a completionist.
Time Bubble: Time Zone
Our last Power Upgrade recommendation for Psychonauts 2 is the Time Zone ability. Sure, the Time Bubble is an invaluable power in its own right, allowing you to slow down baddies to dish out more damage, or decelerate fast-moving objects to pass through or over them. But it can only target a single enemy or object at a time. The Time Zone upgrade, on the other hand, transforms this power into an area-of-effect ability. This means you can hit multiple targets at once, a skill that will prove extra useful in combat as you progress through the game.
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Best Pins in Psychonauts 2
Pins are equippable items that you can buy from any Otto-Matic machine. Just walk up to a machine, open the catalog, and go into the Pins section where you’ll find an abundance of pins up for grabs. Some pins are for purely cosmetic changes, such as the various Lev Ball pins which change your Levitation Ball’s color. Conversely, others can give you and your abilities a massive leg-up. And since you can only equip three pins at any time, it’s important to know which ones to prioritize.
The Telekinesis Psychic Power is useful for ranged attacks but can be limited by the availability of throwable items in your surroundings. The Plucky pin does away with this limitation. Now, even when you’ve exhausted items that you can hurl at enemies, Raz can pluck chunks out of the ground to use as ammunition. This will serve as another great addition to your ranged arsenal, allowing you to keep dishing out damage from afar. Censors, beware!
The Bubble Wrap pin greatly inflates Raz’s Time Bubble attacks, assuming you’ve unlocked the Time Zone upgrade. With this, you can affect a much larger area, and hence many more enemies. So, the next time you’re getting overrun by baddies, simply press the Time Bubble button. Everyone will slow down to a crawl, leaving them open for any attacks you may want to throw their way.
Sometimes you just need a little space. By default, the Mental Connection ability grapples and pulls enemies to you. Useful for unloading a few punches, sure. However, buying and equipping the Heavy Thoughts pin will anchor your enemies in place for a few moments. This can be critical for crowd control and will give you some breathing room to plan out your offense.
Unlike the other pins, the Strike-onaut pin does not give you any flashy upgrades or modify your powers. What it does do is give all your melee attacks a massive damage increase. And considering that you’ll probably be punching enemies for the most part, this makes it a valuable pin in our books.
If you’ve unlocked the Chain Brain ability for your PSI Blast, there’s only one more thing you can do to completely max out the power of PSI Blast. That is to get the Chain Gain pin. This pin adds another mini-projectile to the pieces that break and explode on any PSI Blast hit. This further increases the damage output of your PSI Blast powers, which is why you won’t want to navigate Psychonauts 2 without this pin.
That concludes our guide on the best pins and power upgrades to boost your skills in Psychonauts 2. Did you like the mentioned pins and abilities as much as we did? Moreover, do you have any other ability suggestions that did not make our list? Let us know in the comments. And while you’re here, you may also be interested in our tier list for the Best Warriors in Warframe.
FAQs About Pins and Power Upgrades
We recommend prioritizing the Dodge Attack and Shockwave abilities for Melee, the Overcharge, and Chain Brain skills for PSI Blast, the Tres Bon Fire power for Pyrokinesis, the Pouncy Ball upgrade for Levitation, the Dark Thoughts ability for Mental Connection, and the Time Zone ability for Time Bubble in Psychonauts 2.
You can do this by visiting the Psychic Powers section in your manual. To open your manual, press M on PC, the Touch Pad on PlayStation, or the Change View button on Xbox.
Upgrading your powers requires Intern Credit. You gain Intern Credit every time you level up in the game.
For us, the best pins in Psychonauts 2 are Plucky, Bubble Wrap, Heavy Thoughts, Strike-onaut, and Chain Gain.
New pins are available at any one of the Otto-Matics spread throughout the world of Psychonauts 2. Just go to an Otto-Matic and open the Pins section.
Buying pins requires Psitanium. You can find Psitanium by exploring various locations, or by beating enemies.
You can only equip three pins at a time.
This can be done from the Pins section of the Raz’s intern manual. To open your manual, press M on PC, the Touch Pad on PlayStation, or the Change View button on Xbox.