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Crucible tips: 10 things you need to know before playing the free-to-play hero shooter

(Image credit: Amazon Games)

Jumping into Amazon's first foray into video games? Then you'll need some Crucible tips because while it takes some blatant inspiration from a number of other games, it has some unique elements that make it stand on its own two feet. Crucible is essentially a player-vs-player shooter with a lot of MOBA elements (think Overwatch meets League of Legends), but things aren't quite as simple as that. Before you jump into a match for the first time, read all of our Crucible tips and get a headstart over your opponents. 

1. Test every character in training so you understand their abilities

Crucible tips: Training

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Something we did as soon as we got through the tutorial was jump straight into a match with a random character. Don't do this. We got absolutely obliterated for our first few games because we didn't fully understand our characters' abilities. Instead, have a scroll through the list, jump into the training mode to test out the different characters in a no-pressure environment, then play some public matches when you know how to best utilise your character.

2. Customise your upgrades before the match starts to fit your playstyle

Crucible tips: Upgrades

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Before you spawn for the first time, you're able to adjust your upgrades. This changes the benefits you'll receive as you go from level one to five with essence. Some levels only have one option, but you can pretty much change the role your character plays, from tank to support to DPS, depending on the upgrades you receive. If you're an aggressive player, you don't necessarily want upgrades that solely focus on giving your teammates shield buffs, for example.

3. Farm essence at the start to gain an early advantage over your rivals 

Crucible tips: Essence

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It's tempting to start hunting down the enemy team straight away and while you may catch them unaware while they're farming, the fact they'll be building up more essence than you means they'll start stomping all over you with their upgrades in just a few minutes. At the start, slowly make your way to the first hive location, via as many harvesters and stompers as possible to build up some essence. 

4. Use the ping system to communicate!

Crucible tips: Ping system

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This style of ping communication system has been commonplace since Apex Legends introduced it in early 2019, and Crucible's is almost identical. If you're not going to communicate on the mic with your randomly assigned teammates, use the ping system (middle mouse button by default) to point out enemies, resources, objectives, and more. 

5.  Spend downtime recapturing harvesters to earn more essence, rather than patrolling aimlessly

Crucible tips: Harvesters

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For the most part — especially in Heart of the Hive — you want to either be fighting a hive, fighting an enemy team, or near a harvester. Harvesters have medical stations nearby which mean you can heal yourself without consuming medkits and capturing them gives you +30 essence every 10 seconds, so it's crucial to try and control more than the enemy team. If there's a couple minutes until the hive spawns, hightail it to the nearest harvester that you don't have under control. 

6. Stock up on medkits before fighting so you can retreat and heal if necessary

Crucible tips: Medkits

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Before you start a skirmish with the enemy team, make sure you stock up on medkits. You can find them littered throughout the map and if not, if you have a Captain Mendoza on your team, one of his abilities lets him call in a medkit for someone to pick up.

7. Use plants for health, damage, and stealth buffs 

Crucible tips: Plants

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Plants are found throughout the map that, when damaged, emit buffs you can walk through. One type gives you some health restoration, another will give you a small damage buff, while the third type will make you invisible for a short period of time. Beware though, if a stomper walks through the invisibility effect, it also becomes completely invisible; hilarious and horrifying at the same time.

8. Explore the map in pairs so you don't get ganged up on

Crucible tips: Explore in pairs

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Getting into a 1v1 fight is incredibly dangerous, for a few different reasons. You may be in an unfair matchup since some characters are inherently at a disadvantage against those that counter them well, or the player you're fighting may have a teammate attack from another angle. Due to this, you always want to explore in groups of two or more. If you come across a solo player, even if your character typically struggles against them, the 2v1 aspect should swing the fight in your favour. Then if you come up against another duo, you can use teamwork to come out on top, rather than being pummelled by yourself. 

9. Bait the enemies into destroying the hive so you can ambush them and get the heart

Crucible tips: Capturing a heart

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In Heart of the Hive, the hives aren't too difficult to destroy, but it's easy to get caught up in taking it out instead of focusing on the enemy team, resulting in your demise right as the heart drops. Instead, let the enemy team start taking on the hive first. When they're close to destroying it, swoop in and attack them, then take the heart for yourselves. Essentially, you've let them do the hard work, and you've reaped the rewards. 

10. Damaging someone capturing a heart won't interrupt them, but damaging someone healing from a medkit will 

Crucible tips: Capturing a heart

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There's some inconsistencies with how interrupts work in Crucible. If someone is healing with a medkit, all you need to do is inflict damage on them to interrupt it, meaning they have to restart the healing process all over again. On the other hand, if someone is capturing a heart or harvester, simply damaging them isn't enough; you need to either kill them outright, or deal a stun effect to them with an ability.

One of the resident guide writers around these parts, give me a game and I will write every "how to" I possibly can or die trying. The youngest member of the GamesRadar team, I have an unhealthy addiction to Football Manager, shouting at the TV as Manchester United slowly descend from greatness, and playing Pokemon Go on the bus to and from the office.