When it comes to blending loot systems with the game’s core mechanics, such as survivability, exploration, and discovering interactable items, there is no parallel to Risk of Rain 2. The game is a masterpiece that incentives the replay value by offering alternate map rotations, 11 playable characters, and dropping epic loot. As daunting and hard each run gets, the game tucks away even a tougher challenge involving completing 20 stages in a single run. Risk of Rain 2 Long Road challenge is not for the faint-hearted souls as it throws pressure at every corner while doing the run and demands patience, persistence and perseverance.
Before embarking on this suicidal journey, I recommend having played the entire game at least a couple of times. Doing so offers valuable insight into how the loot system, stage rotations, and its completion works. Secondly, you must have unlocked Artificer or Mercenary survivors because both playable classes make the Long Road challenge a breeze. Third, bring a companion if you can; it never hurts to have cannon fodder on your side.
Risk of Rain 2 The Long Road Challenge Strategy
I mentioned the prerequisites that you need to do before you hop on the bandwagon of the Long Road challenge. Other than that, to remain alive, you will need to strategize the encounters with bosses and minions to stay alive until you finish the 20 stages in a single go. Here are few more things that you should know before you begin you start this challenge.
Drizzle (Easy Mode)
Completing 20 stages in a single go sounds scary. It does not have to be. That is why I recommend going for the Risk of Rain 2 Drizzle difficulty, aka easy mode. Why? Because you need the health bar of enemies as much low as possible, and it is toned down only in the easy mode.
Secondly, the bosses and other in-game unique enemies like twisted scavengers and many others become ridiculously painless to defeat in the Drizzle setting. You need to quickly kill the bosses and minions and keep the progression of Risk of Rain 2 long road challenge rolling. Otherwise, passing more time on a stage at Petrichor V planet only increases the difficulty for you. More on that later here.
In Risk of Rain 2, the in-game difficulty scales as time progresses. From the moment your survivor emerges out of the escape pod to the moment you die, escape or obliterate, time keeps running. The longer you spend in-game time, the higher the difficulty will be. Even for Drizzle mode, if you wander off too long at a single stage in search of valuable items or Lunar coins, chances are you are adding more tension to your run as time slips by.
That is why I recommend giving five to seven minutes per stage while doing the Risk of Rain 2 long road challenge. All you need to do is collect items as long as they are in your line of sight or from Rusty boxes. Then, it would be best if you kept moving to find the Teleporter device. Loader is an excellent pick when it comes to high vertical and horizontal mobility and Rex, by far, is the worst at mobility. Once you have found it, use your friend as bait to lure maximum crowd’s attention while you sit back and shoot from a distance – that is, if you’ve come with a friend. Otherwise, try and stack the items we mentioned below to melt the boss and its minions within a minute and move onto the next stage.
Now that you know why you should not take much longer at a stage, you’d realize that stage rushing is the next vital step to do while completing Risk of Rain 2 long road. From stage one to ten, you should collect as many items and equipment you can. It is because the difficulty is relatively inclined more on the easier side in the first ten stages. The in-game difficulty increases at later stages and favors enemies killing you more than otherwise. So, make a habit of stage rushing.
From stage eleven to twenty, you must be patient while encountering teleporter bosses. Minions will not be the problem in Drizzle difficulty throughout the game, but bosses are a different story. That is why I recommend remaining at a distance from the bosses. All you need to do is land a couple of hits and keep your distance from the boss. Rinse and repeat this process to safely execute Teleporter encounters and defeat bosses for a perfect stage progression.
I am emphasizing stage progression strategy because while playing with Artificer, I wasted three runs just because I misspent in-game time in the first ten stages. It made the game difficult for me, and I had no exceptional items on me whatsoever. Everything turned out great when I employed the strategy mentioned above next time in the run. Not only I finished the Risk of Rain 2 long road challenge, but I also did it in spree – I just got a little over-enthusiastic at the efficiency of my plan. Anyway, moving on to the items.
The items you get will define how much better or worse your Risk of Rain 2 long road progression will go in the following stages. I have mentioned the top three items that I looked for while doing this challenge, which helped me enormously. On a side note, if you do not have an idea of the best and worst items, our Risk of Rain 2 items tier list will surely be of excellent service to you.
A quick reminder: you should stop looking for legendary items. They are rare, and finding them wastes more time and puts your survivor at risk. It is why I never strayed away from the path of completing this challenge for legendary items such as Alien Head, Soulbound Crystal, and more.
Shaped Glass: Arguably the best lunar item, other than Transcendence, you can get in Risk of Rain 2, which grants a 100% increase in base damage. The catch here is that the item also halves the maximum health by 50%. Low health is concerning while doing runs in Risk of Rain 2, but here it should not bother you much as you will need to do the long road challenge on Drizzle mode. Moreover, other than Shaped Glass, you also will need great healing items that keep granting you health on the fly.
Harvester’s Scythe: Probably the only healing item that grants eight health points on critical strikes. I stacked five of Harvester’s Scythe while doing my Risk of Rain 2 long road run. Why? Because each stack offers +4 health, and the higher this number, the more health you recover with critical hits. Since it is a unique item, like Ukulele, getting frequent drops should never be an issue.
Tougher Times: Assuming you did not or could not bring a friend to accompany you on this expedition involving rinsing and repeating exploration and killing enemies for 20 linear stages, should you be worried? No! All you need is the Tougher Times item which can soak in all the incoming damage and completely block the attacks.
Newt Altar – Blue Portals
Traveling through the blue portal and reaching Bazaar Between Time requires you to find and interact with a Newt Portal. There are 36 Newt Portals in Risk of Rain 2, and finding one should not be a problem. If it is, then our Newt Altar locations guide is here to pinpoint the exact position for you to find a Newt Altar.
So, why did I bring up this topic? In the early version of Risk of Rain 2, traveling through the blue portal, spawned by a Newt Altar, used to count for as a stage progression. Since you want to do 20 levels in a single run to complete the Risk of Rain 2 long road challenge, many players exploited this trick before. They repeatedly interacted with a Newt Altar that spawned at every game environment and moved through the blue portal. However, that trickery is not possible anymore as the developers patched it a long time ago.
Shrine of Order
Do not, at any cost, interact with a Shrine of Order while doing the long road challenge. Why? Because the shrine can either take your overpowered items and give you weaker ones, or it can do the opposite of it. In any case, gambling your survivor’s items and hoping to get a favorable outcome is too risky for a run that requires you to sit and complete 20-stages in a single go.
As mentioned earlier, you can complete this challenge with any survivor in Risk of Rain 2. All of the playable classes equally benefit in certain situations and take a hit in others. However, melting enemies as soon as possible and moving forward faster are the two critical elements you will need to keep in mind while doing the challenge. Naturally, if you start seeing this process through this lens, you will filter out the survivors best fit for this discourse.
I already mentioned my preferences. You can take my word and start using the survivors, which I selected while embarking on the Risk of Rain 2 long road journey. Or, say you are extremely good with Captain, MUL-T, or Engineer, by all means, use them in the run. You can ignore my preference for Artificer, Mercenary, or Loader and pick any class you have already mastered its abilities and playstyle.
Summary for The Long Road Challenge
Here is a rundown of everything I mentioned above.
- Go for Drizzle mode and do not waste your in-game time.
- The difficulty scales higher the longer your in-game time goes up.
- Always prioritize stage rushing and be patient with boss encounters.
- Go for the items I mentioned and save yourself from the misery of dying and retrying this challenge.
- Newt Portals is not an option anymore to trick that game that you completed a stage by accessing the blue portal. Stop doing this.
- Go solo or with teammates with my favorites: Artificer, Mercenary, and Loader.
- Complete the challenge and unlock ‘57 Leaf Clover’ legendary item.
That is pretty much everything you should know about Risk of Rain 2 long road. Now that I’ve broken down all the nitty-gritty details, the dos and don’ts regarding the challenge, are you willing to go for it with my suggestions? Or, do you have a better way to complete this journey? Let your thoughts flow into the comments box below.