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"Hades": Excalibur Tank Knight Build Guide for Beginners

Excalibur Tank Knight build

Excalibur Tank Knight build

A Tank Build

Although Hades is based on Greek mythology, Zagreus, son of Hades, can wield the Holy Excalibur from Arthurian Legend, which is the final aspect of Stygian Blade. When equipped, the weapon deals heavy damage and increases total life. The sword also grants a unique moveset called Hallowed Ground that creates a static aura, grants damage reduction, disables traps, and slows the speed of enemy projectiles.

This is a tank-type build to cover for the sword's slow attack speed since it makes it difficult for Zagreus to avoid the enemy's strike while he is swinging the Aspect of Arthur.

Weapon: Aspect of Arthur

Source: From in-game description.


Heavy Slash

Press Attack button to Strike.


Press Attack quickly after Dashing.

Hallowed Ground

Press Special button to use Hallowed Ground, creating a static aura that gives you damage reduction, disables traps, and slows the speed of enemy projectiles.

Nova Smash

Press Special button during Hallowed Ground.

As mentioned, the build focuses on using the Aspect of Arthur, also known as Holy Excalibur. The sword deals heavy damage for each swing and passively increases your life when equipped.

Boons Priority

  • Centaur Heart - Since this is a tank build, Centaur Heart is your first priority, as you'll need as much HP as possible in order to survive multiple hits.
  • Aphrodite - The most important boon here is the Heartbreak Strike, which greatly increases your attack and inflicts weak as well.
  • Athena - Has a wide range of defensive boons.
  • Dionysus - The health boons from Dionysus works well for this tank build.
  • Daedalus Hammer - For modifying your attack and special, transforming it to a stronger form.

In Hades, boons are random, and you don't have complete control over what boons you'll be obtaining. You can only increase your chances of getting the boons you want by re-rolling the rewards for the next room and equipping a preferred boon keepsake at the start of your run.

Below is the list of boons that work for this build.

From in-game description


Heartbreak Strike

Your Attack deals more damage and inflicts Weak.


Different League

Resist some damage from nearby foes' attacks.


Life Affirmation

Any bonus max health and health chamber rewards are worth more


Empty Inside

Your Weak effects have a longer duration.


Sweet Surrender

Weak-afflicted foes are also more susceptible to damage.


Broken Resolve

Your Weak effects are more potent.


Unhealthy Fixation

Your Weak effects also have a chance to Charm foes.

One of each: Heartbreak Strike, Heartbreak Flourish, Crush Shot, or Passion Dash | Empty Inside, Sweet Surrender or Broken Resolve

  • Heartbreak Strike: This boon should be your first priority. It's your bread and butter that strengthens your attack and also inflicts weak on your enemies.
  • Different League: You're always in melee with enemies. That's why you can maximize this boon.
  • Life Affirmation: Gives more health. You will make use of this boon since picking up Centaur Heart is this build's priority.
  • Empty Inside: Not a priority but a good option.
  • Sweet Surrender: This will make your Excalibur deal more damage to weak, afflicted foes.
  • Broken Resolve: The damage of weak, afflicted foes will be reduced more.
  • Unhealthy Fixation: Charming an enemy gives you one less problem to deal with for a while.

From in-game description


Divine Flourish

Your Special is stronger, and can Deflect.


Divine Dash

Your Dash deals damage and can Deflect.


Athena's Aid

Your Call briefly makes you Invulnerable and Deflect all attacks.


Holy Shield

After you take damage, damage nearby foes and briefly Deflect.


Bronze Skin

Resist damage from foes' attacks.


Sure Footing

Resist damage from Traps.


Proud Bearing

You begin each Encounter with your God Gauge partly full.

Aphrodite's Aid, Ares' Aid, Artemis' Aid, Athena's Aid, Demeter's Aid, Dionysus' Aid, Poseidon's Aid, or Zeus' Aid

Blinding Flash

Your abilities that can Deflect also make foes Exposed

Divine Strike, Divine Flourish, Phalanx Shot, or Divine Dash

Brilliant Riposte

When you Deflect attacks, they deal more damage.

Divine Strike, Divine Flourish, Divine Dash, or Holy Shield

Divine Protection

You have a barrier that negates incoming damage. Barrier Cooldown: 20 Sec.

Brilliant Riposte

  • Divine Flourish: Combine with Hallowed Ground, which slows down projectiles. Divine Flourish can effectively deflect projectiles from different angles.
  • Divine Dash: Your dash is more effective when it comes to survival by deflecting damage as well.
  • Athena's Aid: This can make you invulnerable for a short amount of time.
  • Holy Shield: This will prevent you from taking damage continuously.
  • Bronze Skin: Increases your resistance.
  • Sure Footing: Effective during Heightened Security condition in reducing the damage you'll take from traps.
  • Proud Bearing: Giving you an early edge by having starting god gauge.
  • Blinding Flash: This will make you deal more damage by inflicting exposed to enemies that got hit with deflected damage.
  • Brilliant Riposte: Useful when you often deflect the enemy's damage.
  • Divine Protection: Gives you better defensive capability by negating damage.

Source: From in-game description


After Party

If your health is low after Encounters, restore to the threshold.


Positive Outlook

Take less damage while at 40% health or below.


Premium Vintage

Gain health when you pick up Nectar. Reveive 1 Nectar now.


Strong Drink

Using a Fountain restores all health and gives you bonus damage.


  • After Party: This will help you survive if you're having difficult encounters continuously.
  • Positive Outlook: Having this with other resistance from Aphrodite and Athena will make your character resilient.
  • Premium Vintage: Provides more chances of increasing your maximum life.
  • Strong Drink: Increasing your maximum life means more life to fill up after every underworld. This will also give you bonus damage.

Source: From in-game description.


Stubborn Roots

While you have no Death/Stubborn Defiance, your Life slowly recovers.


One of each: Athena: Divine Strike, Divine Flourish, Phalanx Shot, Phalanx Flare, Divine Dash, or Athena's Aid | Demeter: Frost Strike, Frost Flourish, Crystal Beam, Icy Flare, Mistral Dash, or Demeter's Aid

  • Stubborn Roots: Life regeneration is a luxury in this game.

Breaching Slash

Your Attack deals +300% damage to Armor.

Double Edge

Your Dash-Strike hits twice and deals +20% damage.

Hoarding Slash

Your Attack deals bonus damage equal to 5% of your current Charon's Obol.

Piercing Wave

Your Attack fires a wave that pierces foes, dealing 30 damage.

Shadow Slash

Your Attack deals +200% damage when striking foes from behind.

Greater Consecration

Your Holy Excalibur aura is +45% larger; makes foes +10% slower

  • Breaching Slash: Lets you easily destroy enemy armor.
  • Double Edge: This is a big damage boost to your dash strike.
  • Hoarding Slash: The best damage increase you can get. You just have to say goodbye to spending your Charon's Obol.
  • Piercing Wave: Gives you a bonus 30 damage.
  • Shadow Slash: Massive damage when striking foes from behind.
  • Greater Consecration: Gives your more breathing room by making the aura larger.

Source: From in-game description.


Eternal Rose

The next Boon you find will be from Aphrodite. Her blessings have +10/15/20% chance to be Rare or better.

Owl Pendant

The next Boon you find will be from Athena. Her blessings have +10/15/20% chance to be Rare or better.

Overflowing Cup

The next Boon you find will be from Dionysus. His blessings have +10/15/20% chance to be Rare or better.

Old Spiked Collar

Gain +25/38/50 life.

  • Eternal Rose: Your usual first keepsake in order to get Heartbreak Strike as soon as possible.
  • Owl Pendant: Choose at the beginning if you prefer Athena as first boon.
  • Overflowing Cup: Choose at the beginning if you prefer Dionysus as first boon.
  • Old Spiked Collar: This is the recommended boon after first underworld since the build focuses on increasing maximum life.

Status Effects Terms

From in-game description and hades.fandom

Status effectDescription


For at least 3 Seconds, victim deals at least 30% less damage.


Allows an ability to repel projectiles and damage back at the attacker.


Charmed enemies causes them to attack other enemies.


For 5 Seconds, victim takes more damage when struck from behind.

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