Defeating the Furies of Tartarus will let you venture to the burning plains of Asphodel. There, you’ll encounter the Lernaean Bone Hydra, the mythical beast once slain by Hercules that’s now reanimated. The boss spawns as part of the 24th room of your entire run and it counts as the final chamber in the Asphodel levels. Here’s another Hades boss guide to help you out.
Note: This guide is intended for Hades’ early access stage and certain mechanics may change in due course. For more information, check out our Hades guides and features hub.
Hades boss guide: Defeating the Lernaean Bone Hydra
The arena where you fight the Lernaean Bone Hydra in Hades is surrounded by lava. As such, it’s important to avoid ending up in those areas lest Zagreus slowly burn to death. The Lernaean Bone Hydra also summons additional skeletal heads as you whittle down its health during the fight.
The Lernaean Bone Hydra’s attacks
- Bite – The Lernaean Bone Hydra pulls back and chomps at Zagreus. The additional heads of the hydra will also do this basic attack.
- Ground Pound – If Zagreus is within melee range, the Lernaean Bone Hydra will repeatedly slam its head on the ground multiple times.
- Flame Volley – The Lernaean Bone Hydra will spit fireballs.
- Lava Spit – This ranged attack fires spittle that will temporarily cover patches of the ground in molten lava.
- Seeking Flames – The boss can sometimes fire purple flames or crescent-shaped flames that’ll home in on you.
Skeletal Head Summoning
Once the Lernaean Bone Hydra is down to 66% of its total health, it’ll become immune and summon three additional skeletal heads at the edges of the arena. At 33% health, it’ll summon six bony heads. The main boss cannot be damaged until all the remaining heads have been destroyed.
The skeletal heads will each have distinct attacks or support capabilities:
- Ground Pound – Similar to the main boss’ attack, the smaller heads will continuously slam on the ground if Zagreus is nearby.
- Mobs – Monsters such as bone rakers and bloodless will be summoned to become a nuisance.
- Other abilities – Some of the heads will retain an ability used by the main hydra head.
Hades‘ Lernaean Bone Hydra boss fight won’t pose a challenge as long as you’re aware of your surroundings and the boss’ limited “phases.” Those who are new to the game might try to push their DPS to reach the next phase only to get overwhelmed by so many hostiles. Instead, you’ll want to ensure that you’re well prepared to damage the additional skeletal heads as soon as they spawn.
My skills of choice — assuming I was able to find them in previous rooms in Tartarus or Asphodel — were:
- Ares’ Blade Dash and Slicing Shot. These skills allow me to throw a whirling blade or spawn ones by simply dashing back and forth the skulls. If I can’t get Slicing Shot, then Demeter’s Crystal Beam casting skill became a poor substitute (but still better than other options).
- If possible, you could also grab Zeus’ Lightning Strike (basic attack emits chain lightning) or Demeter’s Frost Strike or Mistral Dash (your basic attack or dash chills enemies). The former is great for burst DPS, and the latter is perfect for freezing the skeletal heads before they can even act.
- Varatha, the Eternal Spear or Adamant Rail. The former has a decent range and blindingly fast attacks, and the latter is a rapid-firing gun that can do consistent damage from a distance.
Defeating the Lernaean Bone Hydra nets you a diamond. This resource can be used to unlock new construction options in the House of Hades via the Contractor NPC.
You’ll only earn the diamond as a reward you’ve defeated the Lernaean Bone Hydra using a weapon at a higher “heat” requirement for the Pact of Punishment. If you’re unable to meet this requirement, the boss fight will only net you 80 darkness crystals.
Pact of Punishment: Extreme Measures – Aggressive Hydra
If you’ve defeated Hades at least once to unlock the Pact of Punishment modifiers, then “Extreme Measures” (rank 2) will drastically alter the Lernaean Bone Hydra boss fight. The arena will still be surrounded by lava, but it’ll be much smaller and the main boss will be dead center (pun intended) of the platform.
The boss will retain its previous attacks from fireballs to crescent-shaped purple flames.
Just as before, you still need to watch out for the skeletal heads that’ll spawn at the corners of the arena. Since the main boss is at the center of the platform, you won’t have a lot of room to maneuver and you might find yourself sandwiched in a “bullet hell” type of scenario.
As usual, rapid strikes with AoE effects will be very useful for burst damage (Slicing Shot/Blade Dash/Lightning Strike) or crowd control (Frost Strike/Mistral Dash).