A guide to the Halloween Hellrun challenge, its five levels, and how best to tackle them.
Ultimate Guide to Halloween Hellrun Challenge
Halloween Hellrun is the newest of the game’s three Challenges. It’s also, for the most part, the easiest, with most of its gimmicks serving to make the levels much more relaxed. However, it can still get suitably hellish, so as with Planet D, I recommend waiting until your stats are at least close to maxed out before tackling it. And don’t even think about trying it on Insane unless you have fully maxed-out stats and, ideally, 500 DNA spare for the strength boost. It might not seem like you’ll need it at first, but trust me: you will.
Level 1: Bouncy Harvest
A nice, easy one to start off with. The dactyls in this level all carry pumpkins that come in two sizes, small and large. The small ones can be collected like Eggs, for 50 points each, whereas the large ones bounce around like boulders and can hamper your progress. On lower difficulties, there are so few dactyls that you can practically ignore the gimmick entirely. On higher difficulties, you can still encounter long stretches with no dactyls, only to suddenly get swarmed by a dozen of them. Overall, though, this shouldn’t be too much of a challenge.
Level 2: Forest O’ Fear
This level’s gimmick is that you can fly by holding down the Up key. You can’t fly indefinitely – and it’s slower than running – but it’s still enough to trivialise most of the level’s hills and obstacles. What’s more, birds seem to spawn much more frequently here, especially hidden in the trees. Keep your eyes peeled for them, and you can snap them up for a decent speed boost (and make great progress towards the “birds devoured” trophies if you don’t already have them). Consequently, this level’s even easier than the first.
Level 3: Boneyard Blitz
If you want to earn lots of bones quickly, this is the place to do it. It’s literally raining bones in this level, allowing you to collect hundreds of them without much effort. What’s more, all the dinos, dactyls, critters etc. are a ghostly white, and will disappear if you touch them, removing them as obstacles. However, on Hard or Insane, some dinos will instead be a translucent black (see the right-hand triceratops in the screenshot above). Those dinos are still solid and will get in your way, especially on Insane, so watch out for them.
A quick tip: while dactyls will disappear when you touch them, they’ll still carry you for a second before doing so. And unlike regular levels, if there’s another dactyl immediately below you when you fall, they will pick you up. In this way, you can actually string together a decent dactyl chain far more quickly and easily than in most other levels.
Level 4: Sundown Slaughter
This is essentially a bloodier version of the Rampage speedrun. You have infinite strength – and an infinite stream of blood pouring from your mouth – and anything you touch is sent spiralling off-screen in a shower of blood. You’ll spend the whole level mowing down dinos by the dozen, and it’s all the more cathartic if they kept getting in your way during the previous level.
It’s all been fairly easy so far, but I hope you’ve got plenty of Time Shifts saved up, because you’re about to need them.
Level 5: The Doombringer
First of all: DON’T PANIC. The Doom Wall is right behind you, but it’s not chasing you. You, as the Doombringer, are towing it behind you. You can actually just stand there, and the Doom Wall will hover in place, so keep calm and feel free to take your time.
The aim in this level is not to outrun the Doom Wall, but to make it to the end without touching any of the stegos in your path. You have a limited number of “tries” depending on the difficulty level, and if you run out of tries, you trip up and are consumed by the Doom Wall.
On Easy or Medium, this isn’t too hard. On Insane, however, you have just one try. If you touch a stego, at all, you die. Needless to say, this is much easier said than done, and beating The Doombringer on Insane is widely considered to be one of the hardest feats in the entire game. If you have maxed-out stats and 500 DNA, you can use your strength boost to give yourself a safety net, but otherwise, it’s entirely down to skill, a little bit of luck, and how many Time Shifts you managed to save up.
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