Cultic is a gory, scary, and beautifully atmospheric retro shooter inspired by the late-90s FPS game: Blood. It has garnered overwhelmingly positive reviews on Steam and other platforms. Furthermore, Cultic is a beautiful game that packs incredible detail in its environment, combat, and level design. All the while, it provides enough of a challenge and options to tackle any scenario for new or old fans of the retro-FPS genre.
If you’re looking for a place to start your journey into Cultic, our Beginners Guide has you covered!
Cultic’s Physics and Objects
One of the most significant elements of Cultic’s combat is the number of physics-based objects in the environment and how they interact with combat. From barrels, chairs, and dynamite, to the scattered remains of your enemies, a lot is going on in the background of each fight.
The silent detective you play in Cultic also has a lot of strength, making any object you a deadly weapon. There are also a few achievements related to your throwing power, such as the “Here’s Lookin’ at You” achievement for killing an enemy with an eyeball.
The Physics in Cultic Adds Combat Variety
That’s just scratching the surface of the physics in Cultic, but we will touch on a few more elements before we move on. All throwable items are also physics-based objects, including dynamite and axes; this means bullets or other objects can collide with these throwable objects.
Axe Cultists can knock back your dynamite bundles if you’re unlucky, or if you’re fast enough, you can grab one of their flying axes before it hits you.
Cultic’s physics has a lot of functionality, which helps ensure that each combat encounter has a bit of unpredictable randomness to keep the player on their toes.
Dynamite, Cultic’s Best Friend
Cultic is heavily inspired by Blood, implementing similar mechanics, art style, and basic enemy designs, but it brings much more to the table. One of the core mechanics of Cultic is dynamite. While it is not a requirement to use it as it was in Blood, dynamite makes combat considerably easier in Cultic for beginners.
Dynamite Adds More Strategic Combat
For example, in this game, you can toss bundles of dynamite around corners to clear out groups of cultists before entering a crowded room, or you can toss unlit bundles and shoot them to detonate.
In Cultic, like all thrown objects, you can hold down the button to charge your throw, giving a longer or shorter throw depending on the situation. In addition to throwing a bundle of dynamite, you can also unwrap the bundle and throw a cluster of single sticks of dynamite to cover the battlefield with more explosions.
Dynamite and Molotovs Combine for Interesting Effects in this Game
Later when you acquire some Molotov, there’s a unique interaction where you can tape one bundle of dynamite to the bottle and light both before throwing it, resulting in a devastating explosion with scorching flames.
There’s so much variety and ways you can use dynamite; your only limit is your throwing arm and how much you carry in your inventory.
Bloody, Satisfying Headshots and Slow Mo
Although Cultic is a retro-inspired FPS, it still allows players to aim for headshots. Every weapon in this game has the potential to take out enemies with a single shot. The only exceptions are explosives or flame-based weapons. Even your character’s kick can be effective.
In the Cultic game, certain guns, such as the Lever Action, have the ability to take out multiple enemies at once. This is indicated by an achievement called “Stack ’em Up.” Be sure to aim accurately and make use of this feature if you notice the enemies lining up.
Cultic Beginners can Take Advantage of Slow-Mo Cams
Landing headshots or exploding your foes into a pile of gibs and red mist can trigger a brief slow-motion state, like in Killing Floor 2.
These moments of slow motion give the player a few seconds to breathe, scan their surroundings, and gain a brief moment of satisfaction, knowing that they have successfully landed a headshot or blown up a few enemies.
Health, Armor, & Field Kits in Cultic
Cultic follows the basics of Retro health pickups and armor. Yet, there are a few minor details that new players might miss that we’ll cover now in our beginners guide to Cultic. There are two types of armor: Blast and Ballistic Armor.
Pick the Right Kind of Armor
These armor types defend against different types of damage; Blast Armor helps protect against explosive damage, whereas Ballistic Armor absorbs damage from bullets.
Collect “Imbued Remains” for Health Upgrades
There are HP Upgrades called “Imbued Remains,” scattered across the ten levels in Chapter One, and have several lore entries found in separate areas explaining how they work. Picking up Imbued Remains will increase your health by five; if you manage to find all of them, you can max out your health at 145, plus armor!
New Players Should Keep their Eye Out for Field Kits in Cultic
Lastly, a minor but impactful item is the Field Kit. The Field Kit is a health pickup that can be used at any point to restore up to 100 HP until you find another one.
Traditionally, items like the Field Kit only supply the player with 100 health; however, in Cultic, if you have at least one point left in your Field Kit and you are at full health, any health pick-up you come across will be added to your Field Kit for later use.
A small health pick-up grants you 15 HP, which adds seven HP to the Field Kit if you are at maximum health.
Cultic includes many standard movement options often associated with retro FPS games, such as sliding, crouch jumping, and basic techniques. There is also one advanced yet slightly bizarre way to traverse around the map: a technique called “Kick-Hopping,” similar to bunny hopping.
Guide on How to Kick Hop Around the Map for Cultic Beginners
Get a running start by using your sprint key, jumping, and using your kick while you’re in mid-air. Once you hit the ground, immediately jump and kick again while in the air.
Successfully performing this small trick will ensure that you move faster than sliding or slide-hopping ever could. Kick-hopping appears to be an intended feature, as the developer Jason Smith showcased this trick in a dev update.
Cultic Has Many Secrets for Beginner Players to Uncover
There is a plethora of hidden secrets found in almost every level of Cultic just waiting for newbies to find. Secrets are staples of old-school shooters, rewarding the player with extra health, armor, upgrades, or giving them new weapons early. Always stay on the lookout for vents, cracked walls, or hidden areas for additional resources and supplies.
Lots of secrets can also provide a bit of lore, helping to immerse you in the dark world of Cultic.
We will provide two secret locations in the first level, “The Grave,” to start you off.
First Hidden Secret We Will Cover in our Cultist Beginners Guide
Near the grave’s start is a parked truck outside the first building you enter. You can use parkour to get onto the top of the truck and then onto a thin ledge that stretches across the building. Above the main entrance is a small vent that can be smashed open with some extra resources inside.
The Second Hidden Secret
Next, inside the first room are a few hatchet cultists and a locked jail cell with weapon parts inside. Directly behind the jail cell is a hallway with a broken pipe blowing steam; there is a crack in the wall. Tossing a bundle of dynamite at the wall will allow you to claim your first weapon parts.
Upgrades are Critical for Cultist Beginners
Upgrades are another essential part of Cultic’s progression. While there is no requirement to upgrade all of your weapons, these upgrades add so many quality-of-life improvements to otherwise already beautiful guns. Upgrades range from standard, magazine upgrades, more damage, and faster fire rate.
Customizing Weapons Using Weapon Parts
However, some upgrades can drastically impact certain weapons, such as giving the Handgun a burst fire or tightening the spread on the Shotgun. You can find plenty of additional Weapon Parts in various secrets, but Cultic will provide you with free Weapon Parts whenever you encounter a workbench.
A Solution to Every Problem Exists
Cultic does an excellent job of presenting new gameplay features and enemies through tailored environments or scripted events. These events can teach you a lot about new enemies’ patterns, behaviors, and weaknesses.
Most human enemies can be quickly eliminated with one or two well-placed shots. However, armored or larger threats might require more effort to take down. The game’s most challenging enemies, the challenging Cultic bosses require even more tactics, so check out our linked guide if you end up having trouble trying to defeat them.
Quick Guide to Overcoming Cultic’s Early Enemies for Beginners
We don’t have the space to discuss how to defeat all Cultic enemies here, but we will touch on a few to make your early encounters a little easier. For more info, check out our linked companion guide.
The Harvester is a hulking butcher who uses a chainsaw and tosses explosives and bear traps in order to corner the player. You can use any weapon to bring down this aggressive monstrosity, but Molotovs or throwing nearby lanterns are great ways to limit their mobility and burn them from a distance.
Alternatively, the shotgun is preferred against the Harvester since it has enough knockback power to interrupt the Harvester’s attacks, should they get too close.
There are plenty of other examples of what gun works best for dealing with certain enemies, but this can take some time to experiment with if you are not familiar with retro FPS games.
Wrap Up on Our Beginner’s Guide to Cultic
Cultic is a beautiful game, and it makes us wish that more titles would aspire to have the creativity and beautifully exciting combat that Cultic brings to the table. If you want to learn more about what makes this game worth it, check out our detailed Cultic review.
There are plenty of unforgettable moments that Cultic brings with a stunning presentation, and we wanted to highlight some of the basics without spoiling these wonderful moments. We hope this Cultic beginners guide sets you on the right path through the game.
For other great guides, check out our list of the best Boomer Shooter games available today.
Happy slaying, for now!