How to extract Samples in Helldivers 2

Helldivers 2
(Image credit: Arrowhead Game Studios)

Farming Samples in Helldivers 2 is done through a simple enough method - finding the right kind of mission at a level of difficulty that'll provide the samples you want, then repeating it as fast as you can and leaving with whatever you find along the way. Samples are an oddity in Helldivers 2, as the common samples, for many people, end up being more valuable than the Rare or Super Samples, a strange quirk of the Helldivers 2 progression system. Still, they're all valuable to one degree or another, and it's likely you'll want to know how to get all of them if you're determined to develop your ship to its utmost. With that in mind, I'll explain how to farm Samples in Helldivers 2 of all rarities, as well as how Samples work in-game.

The best Helldivers 2 Sample farming method

Helldivers 2 Samples

(Image credit: Sony)

The best way to farm Samples in Helldivers 2 is to head into a short bug-killing Blitz: Search and Destroy mission on a specific difficulty. The idea is that these missions are short and quick, so while there are fewer Samples available than there would be in a bigger mission, you complete and leave much faster. Not only that, but Bug Nests make Samples very easy to notice, and the right loadout (explosive Stratagems and weapons) can empty nests even quicker. Simply load up one of these missions and get through it as fast as possible, clearing nests and then sweeping the ground to grab all the leftover samples. 

Depending on the difficulty you play the game at, it will vary what Samples are available. Certain missions will also prohibit certain Samples spawning (you'll never find Rare or Super Samples on an extermination mission, no matter the difficulty).

  • Common Samples: Trivial, Easy and Medium difficulty
  • Rare Samples: Challenging, Hard and Extreme difficulty
  • Super Samples: Suicide Mission, Impossible and Helldive difficulty

If you're looking for Super Samples, make sure to keep an eye out for tall, straight, somewhat cylindrical grey rocks with white marks criss-crossing over them (Super Samples are found at the base of those. They look rather like meteorites, though obviously the landscape of the planet you're on might make them easier or harder to pick out at a distance.

What are Samples in Helldivers 2?

Helldivers 2 ship management console

(Image credit: Sony)

Common Samples and better in Helldivers 2 are a currency used to buy upgrades for your ship (which in turn upgrade and enhance your Stratagems in the field). When Samples of any kind are found in missions (marked by little icons above them), players need to pick them up and successfully extract while holding them - if you can't get them out of the mission, they don't add to your total. If a player is killed while holding Samples, somebody else will need to run over and pick them up off their body.

Fortunately, extracted Samples are given to ALL players upon successful completion of a mission. That means that who picks them up and carries them out really doesn't matter, as long as somebody does it.

You can tell how many Samples are in the map from the icons in the top right when you open the mini-map itself, though it won't show you where they are. You can use this as a general indicator of what's out there to find, though I can't recommend sweeping the whole map comprehensively to max out your reward - even in the farming method shown above, this is a system that's best handled by quick sweeps, grabbing what's in front of you and moving on. It's just quicker that way.

Once Samples are brought back to your ship, you'll be able to spend them at the Ship Management terminal to the left of where you're dropped off. More ship upgrades are unlocked as you spend, so make sure to check what's ahead!

Want to farm some levels instead? Check out our Helldivers 2 fast levelling guide for info on how to reach level 20 ASAP!

How to Successfully Extract with Samples

A Helldivers 2 Challenge to successfully extract with 10 Common Samples

(Image credit: Sony)

We've seen a daily Personal Order come up demanding Helldivers "successfully extract with common samples." If you've got that challenge to do, keep in mind that you need to successfully bring them onto the ship, it's not enough to grab them and then get wiped out. If you drop them, you'll need to go get them back to make progress.

Otherwise, the fastest way to do this challenge (assuming they don't want Super Samples) is to do easy Eradication Missions, which are on small, easily-explored maps where the Samples are always in the same locations.  Leap in to a low-difficulty challenge, grab the Samples, kill however many enemies you need to and leave. If you didn't get enough samples, simply repeat the process.

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Joel Franey
Guides Writer

Joel Franey is a writer, journalist, podcaster and raconteur with a Masters from Sussex University, none of which has actually equipped him for anything in real life. As a result he chooses to spend most of his time playing video games, reading old books and ingesting chemically-risky levels of caffeine. He is a firm believer that the vast majority of games would be improved by adding a grappling hook, and if they already have one, they should probably add another just to be safe. You can find old work of his at USgamer, Gfinity, Eurogamer and more besides.