Desperados III is a hardcore tactical stealth game, and the first few hours can be rough. Even if you’re a veteran of the real-time tactics genre, Desperados III’s puzzle-like encounter design can really keep you scratching your head trying to figure out the best way to take down a group of guards. Also, each playable character has their own unique set of tools with their own advantages and disadvantages, so learning how to master each character’s abilities is critical to success. Being a prequel, tons of new players are likely to jump onto the Desperados bandwagon with Desperados III, so these are the best tips, tricks, and strategies to help you get ahead during the opening hours of this brutal western tactics game.
Save, Save, Save Again
Slip-ups and mistakes are inevitable in Desperados III, so you’ll want to make sure you save often so you don’t lose too much progress when things go wrong. Save after everything. Anytime you kill a group of guards, save. Any time you get through an area, save. Any time you move a character forward, save. Not only will making a habit of saving save you from the frustration of being set back further than you’d like, but it will also allow you to adjust to any unforeseen guards or enemies that throw a wrench into your plan. Sometimes, you’ll just forget someone was standing there or you won’t have seen a guard hanging out behind a wall. It happens. Thankfully, there’s no penalty for saving as frequently as you’d like, so go ahead and quicksave like you’re about to murder a bunch of NPCs in a Bethesda game. You won’t be able to forget to save, either, as there’s a frequent save reminder pop up that flashes on screen every minute or so. You can turn it off or adjust the frequency, though, so it doesn’t get too annoying.
Use Showdown Mode to Coordinate Attacks
Sometimes, you’ll need more than one person to execute your master plan, and that’s where Showdown Mode comes into play. By pressing the Shift key (or up on the d-pad on PS4/Xbox), you’ll freeze time and enter Showdown Mode, which allows you to plan your characters’ actions at the same time. Everyone can queue up one action, and when you press Execute Plan, they’ll carry them out simultaneously. This is perfect for double or triple takedowns, as each character can sneak up on their target and take them out together so no one gets spotted. You can use any abilities you want in Showdown Mode, so you can even have some of your characters run interference to give the rest of the party some breathing room while they quietly kill some guards. Kate can throw perfume to stun onlooking guards so McCoy can snipe them with his pistol, for example. Showdown Mode has a lot of potential, and you can execute some pretty awesome plans with it. Just make sure you save before trying anything too fancy unless you want to get someone killed and lose some progress.
Be Smart with Guns
Even though Desperados III features some of the toughest gunslingers and cowpoke of the west, they’re not invincible. Don’t expect to take out dozens of guys with your revolvers and other guns. Red Dead Redemption this is not. Still, Cooper and some of the other playable characters carry weapons with them, and they can be very powerful tools in the right hands. They all serve different functions, but they all have one thing in common: they make a lot of noise. You don’t want to give away your position with a gunshot, so make sure guards are out of earshot before you fire. When you aim a gun, a blue circle appears around your character. Anyone within that blue circle will hear the gunshot, so use that to your advantage to plan things out. Everyone’s guns have different uses. For example, Cooper’s revolvers can shoot two people simultaneously, McCoy’s pistol is quiet and has range, and Hector’s shotgun can kill multiple people up close. If you use everyone’s guns in conjunction, you can eliminate large groups of guards, so be sure to use them whenever you need to.
Don’t Be Afraid to Rush Through Viewcones
Entering a viewcone in Desperados III doesn’t result in immediate detection. Only the solid portion of the viewcone closest to the guard will immediately spot you. You can safely pass through the outer segment of a viewcone so long as you’re crouched, but you don’t have all day. Sneaking through the outer reaches of a viewcone will cause a detection meter to fill up, starting at the guard and slowly moving its way toward your character, and the guard will detect you once the solid part reaches you. However, it moves slowly, so don’t be afraid to move through a viewcone at a distance. You’ll likely be able to sneak right through it without being discovered. This way, you can move to a more advantageous position or even bypass some guards entirely. Also, make use of cover and other objects that might block an enemy’s viewcone in order to remain hidden.
Fast Forward to Learn Patrol Paths
Sometimes, you just want to get the lay of the land and see what you’re working with before making a move. If you’re trying to get a feeling for the guards’ patrol patterns or their viewcone patterns, this can take quite some time though. Thankfully, there’s a way to speed things up. By pressing the X key (or holding left on the d-pad and holding X/A on PS4/Xbox), you can fast-forward the game, making everything run faster. That way, you can watch guards follow their patrol patterns at high speed and not wait around for too long. Just make sure you’re in a safe place before you start fast-forwarding. You don’t want a guard to spot you as they walk their patrol route.
Some Characters Are Better at Hiding Bodies
Each character in Desperados III moves bodies in a different way. Hector, for example, can carry two people at once and run around while doing so, while Kate can only slowly drag one person at a time. Just because Hector can carry more people faster doesn’t mean he’s always the best choice, though, because he’s easily visible while doing so. Kate might be slower, but she’s much harder to spot when she’s dragging someone. Keep these quirks in mind when getting rid of dead bodies. Some characters are the best for quickly moving bodies, while others are great for quietly moving bodies. Learn how everyone operates and you’ll have no trouble disposing of unwanted corpses when the need arises.
Highlight Your Environment
Desperados III’s detailed environments aren’t just for show. Knowing exactly what parts of the environment you can interact with can make your life a whole lot easier, and Desperados III thankfully has a way to do just that. By pressing L3/LS on PS4/Xbox, you can highlight every interactive object in the environment. This will let you know where you can hide and what you can use to your advantage. There are several opportunities for environmental kills, and if guards think a death was accidental, they won’t get suspicious and raise the alarm. There are tons of things to interact with in each of Desperados III’s levels, so keep a watchful eye and incorporate nearby objects into your strategies.