Halls of Torment’s first major update ups the ante in a big way, introducing the toughest challenges the game has seen yet. From the new Frozen Depths map, to the difficulty-scaling Agony Mode, you’ll find no shortage of brick walls to bash your head against here. Thankfully, the game also puts some weight on the other side of the scale too, introducing powerful new characters in the Norseman and Beast Huntress, as well as the game-changing new Marks system. This can be tricky to wrap your head around at first, so read on for a full guide on how to get and use Marks in Halls of Torment.
How to make the most of Marks in Halls of Torment
Put simply, Marks are special items you can equip to your characters in Halls of Torment. They can be equipped in a new slot in the top-right of your equipment screen, and they can be equipped pre-run like any other Item, by accessing the chest next to the Wellkeeper. Unlike Items, however, Marks aren’t unlocked by retrieving them during runs, but rather by completing specific achievements.
There’s one Mark for every character in the game, so nine in total so far, and each is unlocked by reaching Agony three with that character on a specific map. Full details on which map you need to do this on for each character can be found in the table below. This can be a difficult task, particularly on the later maps, so be sure you’re using a powerful build when attempting these achievements. It’s worth noting that these new achievements replace the old ‘Reach level 100 with X character’ achievements from before the update, so if you had any of those unlocked, you’ll automatically receive the Agony three achievement, and the Mark, for that character with no further work needed.
Once you’ve unlocked some Marks, you can start to use them in your runs. All nine Marks give you two things: a passive buff, and access to a new suite of Traits. For example, the Mark of the Sword, the Mark associated with the Swordsman, grants you +0.30/s health regeneration, as well as access to Swordsman character Traits. The latter point can be confusing, so to clarify, it means you’ll be able to choose two additional options for the Weapon Proficiency, Proficient Stance, and Dedication Traits.
What this means is that Marks give you a tonne of new options when it comes to building out your characters Trait-wise. You can combine the dual-hits of the Norseman with the attack speed of the Archer, or the summoning power of the Warlock with the hound-sporting Beast Huntress. There’s no Trait list available in-game, so we’d recommend checking out the Halls of Torment Wiki page on the topic for a comprehensive list, which you can use to plan out your Trait combos.
While the extra Traits are the main draw here, you shouldn’t overlook the passive bonuses that Marks offer. These can be fairly substantial, such as the Norseman’s blanket 20% boost to all damage, and can really take the edge off a tough run when equipped. You can even equip a character with their own Mark if you want to double down on what they do best; a particularly good strategy for the Warlock, since his is the only Mark that really helps out with Summon damage. For this reason, as soon as you have at least one Mark unlocked, you should be going into every run with one equipped.
We’ve covered Marks in a general sense so far, but you’ll want to know the specifics of each Mark in order to plan out your runs and future strategies. To that end, here’s a full list of all the Marks and their effects:
|Mark of the Sword||Swordsman||Haunted Caverns||Allows you to pick Swordsman character Traits. +0.30/s regeneration.|
|Mark of the Arrow||Archer||Haunted Caverns||Allows you to pick Archer character Traits. +0.10 Base Crit Chance.|
|Mark of Incineration||Exterminator||Ember Grounds||Allows you to pick Exterminator character Traits. Main weapons get a 15% chance to burn enemies.|
|Mark of the Shield||Shield Maiden||Forgotten Viaduct||Allows you to pick Shield Maiden character Traits. +10 Base Defense.|
|Mark of Sanctity||Cleric||Haunted Caverns||Allows you to pick Cleric character Traits. +20% Effect on hit Chance.|
|Mark of Rituals||Warlock||Ember Grounds||Allows you to pick Warlock character Traits. +30% Summon Damage.|
|Mark of Sorcery||Sorceress||Forgotten Viaduct||Allows you to pick Sorceress character Traits. Main Weapons get a 15% chance to electrify enemies.|
|Mark of the North||Norseman||Frozen Depths||Allows you to pick Norseman character Traits. +20% damage.|
|Mark of the Beast||Beast Huntress||Frozen Depths||Allows you to pick Beast Huntress character Traits. Main Weapons get a 15% chance to Frost enemies.|
So there you have it: everything you need to know about how to get and use Marks in Halls of Torment. This is one of the more nuanced new features in the new update, and one that has a lot of potential for creating fun, powerful builds in the future if you master its intricacies.