Skip to main content

Psychonauts 2: 9 tips and tricks for combat

Combat in Psychonauts 2 plays out much faster than it did in its predecessor. Within minutes, you’ll have access to multiple skills, dozens of enemies bombard the screen, and you’ll need to stay on your toes in order to make it out unscathed.

Despite some radical changes, combat in Psychonauts 2 never becomes overtly difficult — however, newcomers might need a bit of assistance to wrap their brains around its intricacies. If you’re getting booted out of brains more often than you’d like, here are a few pointers to help master the combat in Psychonauts 2.

Further reading

Purchase Pins

Psychonauts 2 Otto Matic Pin screen.
Image used with permission by copyright holder

The Otto Matic at the Motherlobe has a bunch of cool features, but purchasing Pins is arguably the most important. These items grant you unique perks — such as dealing more damage with melee attacks, the ability to hold enemies in place with Mental Connection, or the option to use the ground as an unlimited source of Telekinetic ammo.

Many of these are locked behind specific level and psitanium requirements, but make sure you swing by after each mission to see if there’s anything that catches your eye.

Purchase Psi Pops and Dream Fluff

If you’re having trouble with the combat in Psychonauts 2, the quickest fix is purchasing a Psi Pop or Dream Fluff from the always-helpful Otto Matic. These consumable items restore a portion of your Mental Energy — essentially providing you with a larger health bar. They cost a good wad of psitanium, but for anyone struggling with Psychonauts 2, they’re a worthwhile investment.

Dodging is key

Combat is a bit more difficult compared to the original Psychonauts, and you’ll need to make liberal use of your Dodge button if you’re hoping to survive. Whether you’re facing a dozen Censors or a single overpowered boss, the easiest way to cut a fight short is by forgetting to dodge. Most of your opponents do a great job of signaling their attacks beforehand — so just keep your eyes peeled for any strange movements and prepare to roll out of the way.

Don’t stop moving

Raz runs through a colorful mental palace in Psychonauts 2.
Image used with permission by copyright holder

If you’re not dodging attacks, you should at least be moving around the battlefield. Razputin isn’t quite as nimble as Batman, but combat still requires you to juggle multiple enemies at once. Whether you’re Psi Blasting targets out of the air or bouncing from Censors to Bad Ideas, make sure you’re not standing around waiting for the bad guys to make the first move.

Upgrade your skills

This one is a no-brainer — but head over to your pause screen every so often to upgrade your skills. Not only does this make some of your moves more powerful, but it’s also possible you’ll unlock combos and movesets not previously available. If combat seems a bit too difficult, there’s a good chance you have a bunch of unused Intern Credits sitting in your pocket.

Newcomers will benefit the most from upgrading their melee and Psi Blast skills, as these are the two skills you’ll be relying on the most throughout the early hours of Psychonauts 2. Clairvoyance, meanwhile, is a perfectly fine skill to ignore until you reach the endgame — it has plenty of practical uses but isn’t very powerful in most combat situations.

Figure out each enemy’s weakness

Most enemies are susceptible to all your skills and abilities, but some are more effective than others. Bad Ideas, for example, are easy to defeat by using Mental Connection to pull them toward you and hammer away with melee attacks. Doubts, on the other hand, can be removed using Pyrokinesis.

There are a variety of foes you’ll stumble upon in other people’s brains — so take the time to test all your abilities on them and figure out which is the most effective.

Make liberal use of all your abilities

Raz hits an enemy with a giant hand in Psychonauts 2.
Image used with permission by copyright holder

Figuring out an enemy’s weakness is just one reason you’ll want to spam all your abilities in combat. The other reason is a bit more pragmatic — most skills can only be used a few times before they need to recharge. Instead of sitting around waiting for that to happen, it’s in your best interest to continue dealing damage with one of your other skills.

A good skill rotation for most early battles is:

  • Use Psi Blast until it’s depleted.
  • Pull in enemies with Mental Connection.
  • Use melee attacks and Pyrokinesis.
  • Dodge away and repeat.

As you unlock more skills, you can pepper them into the above sequence, but that basic cycle should cover you for the first five hours of Psychonauts 2 until things become more difficult.

Find Half-A-Minds to increase your health

Raz near a brain in Psychonauts 2.
Image used with permission by copyright holder

Half-A-Minds are some of the rarest collectibles in Psychonauts 2. Only a few are located in each brain you’ll visit — and you’ll need to scour every fold and wrinkle in order to find them. If you manage to collect two of them, your Mental Energy will grow by “a whole brain.”

In other words, Half-A-Brains increase your available HP pool. If you’re having trouble with combat, run through previous locations using the Collective Unconscious and try to pick up a few of these valuable items.

Pick up Mental Energy orbs

One of the easiest ways to keep yourself alive during combat is to pick up Mental Energy orbs. These can be found by destroying items in your surroundings and are easy to spot by their glowing green aura. Picking these up will immediately refill a portion of your health. Anyone who doesn’t have a Psi Pop or Dream Fluff on hand will want to be on the constant lookout for these drops, as they’ll be the only surefire way to restore health during tense battles.

Editors' Recommendations

Jon Bitner
Jon Bitner is a writer covering consumer electronics, technology, and gaming. His work has been published on various websites…
Nickelodeon All-Star Brawl 2: release date window, trailers, gameplay, and more

We've recently been treated to a new set of platform fighters trying to oust Super Smash Bros. Ultimate as the best fighting game on Nintendo Switch, and one of the most promising has been Nickelodeon All-Star Brawl.

Combining the combat of a platform fighter with tons of classic Nick characters seemed like a surefire hit, and yet the first release wasn't without issue. It had the roster and good online play going for it but was lacking in modes, polish, and even voice-acting on release. Now that the sequel has been announced, many hope that it will fix those issues with the original and make Nickelodeon All-Star Brawl 2 the cross-over fighter of our childhood dreams. There are no commercials for this show, so tune in to learn everything we know about Nickelodeon All-Star Brawl 2.
Release date  window

Read more
Baldur’s Gate 3: tips and tricks for beginners
Baldurs Gate 3

Whether you've played a CRPG before, or even the classic pen-and-paper Dungeons & Dragons game, there's no denying that Baldur's Gate 3 has captured the attention of many gamers who are unfamiliar with the genre. This makes it quite intimidating to jump into for newcomers with just how deep the systems appear but with a little help, it isn't terribly hard to become invested in this unique experience. While Baldur's Gate 3 does do a lot to try and explain itself, there's just far too much to take in for most players. Since you can't exactly ask a DM to catch you up or remind you of how something works, we'll help guide you through the early hours of Baldur's Gate 3 with this set of tips and tricks.
Save a lot

Things can get very bad very fast in Baldur's Gate 3, in and out of combat. In fights, there's always the chance a bad roll will wipe your party or you came in with the completely wrong setup or companions. In that case, having a handy save is vital to jump back to and prevent you from either failing or using a ton of resources to squeak by.

Read more
The best weapons in Remnant 2
Three characters shoot at a boss in Remnant 2.

While your own personal skill can compensate for a weak weapon in most Souls-like games, including Remnant 2, it is never fun to spend way longer than you need to in fights because you can't output enough damage. Unlike most traditional games in the genre, Remnant 2 features a heavy emphasis on firearms, though there still are plenty of viable melee options. Despite guns not typically having a ton of stats, these have just as many variables to consider for your build as any Dark Souls weapon does, not to mention how it changes with upgrades. Some weapons can be bought, but most you will find and craft by exploring the ever-changing world and completing quests. No one wants to waste precious materials investing in a gun that ends up being useless by the endgame. So, where are the best weapons worth your time in Remnant 2?
Cube Gun

This handgun is easily one of the most powerful you will find in Remnant 2. It is a special weapon, meaning it comes with a mod called Cube Shield, hence the name of this gun. By default, the Cube Gun deals 15 damage, shoots at 7.5 RPS, and has a magazine size of 5 which is all very strong for this weapon type. The mod, however, is why this gun earns its spot on this list. By using Cube Shield, you will create a shield around your character for 15 seconds and absorbs up to 800 damage at level 1. If that wasn't strong enough, if you activate the mod a second time while active, it will send the shield out as a projectile to deal damage to any enemy it hits, with the more damage it has absorbed until then adding to the damage it deals.

Read more