What is Loathing in Darkest Dungeon 2? Answered

What is loathing? Baby don’t hurt me.
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Darkest Dungeon 2 is an incredibly prickly game, full of tiny elements and systems that gradually, piece by piece, cut you down to size over the course of each run. From keeping your flame alight to keeping your party of heroes away from each other’s throats, you’ll have much more than mere monsters to manage if you want to make your way to the Mountain. One such system is Loathing, a mysterious mechanic that can make your life a misery if you don’t manage it properly. But just what is Loathing in Darkest Dungeon 2? And how can you properly play around it? Read on for the answers to these questions and more.

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Learn the secrets of Loathing in Darkest Dungeon 2

What is Loathing?

Loathing is a mechanical representation of the evil that is slowly engulfing the world of Darkest Dungeon 2. As your party’s Loathing level increases, the overall difficulty of your run does also. Loathing is represented by a series of diamonds in the top right of your screen. Here you can see your current Loathing level, and mouse over it to see the effects it’s having on your run. While the effects of Loathing do vary based on which Confession you’re playing through, they are universally negative, so you should seek to minimize them at all costs.

How do I gain and lose Loathing?

What Is Loathing In Darkest Dungeon 2 Answered Oblivion Tear 2

Screenshot by PC Invasion

The conditions for gaining and losing Loathing are incredibly simple. You gain one level of Loathing whenever you pass over an Oblivion Tear on the road. Depending on your luck with scouting, you may be able to see these coming on the Map and change route to avoid them.

What Is Loathing In Darkest Dungeon 2 Answered Removing Loathing 1

Screenshot by PC Invasion

Inevitably, you will pass through an Oblivion Tear or two during a run, however, and you’ll therefore build up some amount of Loathing in doing so. To get rid of this Loathing, and the negative effects it brings, you’ll need to win battles in locations on the Map. This includes Oblivion’s Ramparts, Creature Dens, Lairs, Resistance Battles: any battle that isn’t found on the road between locations. Prevail in any battle like this, and your Loathing level will be reduced by one.

How can I play around Loathing?

Oblivion Tear 1

Screenshot by PC Invasion

Now that you understand the mechanics that govern Loathing, you can begin to plan your runs around it. The first thing you’ll want to do is avoid Oblivion Tears where you can. As mentioned above, Oblivion Tears are often visible on your Map, so check it frequently to spot upcoming Tears, particularly when you’re approaching a crossroads where you’ll need to choose a direction. Sometimes this will take you on a less-than-optimal route in other respects, but avoiding the penalties that come with Loathing tends to be worth it in the long run.

Removing Loathing 2

Screenshot by PC Invasion

If you do hit an Oblivion Tear or two, whether it be from bad luck or bad planning, you’ll want to try and reduce your Loathing as soon as possible. Check your Map, look for the next upcoming battle location, and head there immediately. You will have to take on a battle with your current Loathing penalties, but afterwards your future battles will be easier, and your Loathing won’t snowball into a higher level. This will prevent you from being overwhelmed by an unavoidable battle in the future, and is the best strategy for dealing with Loathing once you have it.

Now that you know what Loathing is in Darkest Dungeon 2, and how you can manage it during your runs, you’ll be able to keep the creatures of the night at a steady simmer rather than a brutal boil.

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Author
Nathan Ball
Nathan Ball is a freelance games writer with a deep love for the medium. Having studied Game Design at the University of Abertay, Dundee, he's always on the lookout for games that push the envelope and try out fresh and exciting design techniques. You can usually find him covering the latest indie gems, but he does dabble in the world of AAA from time to time as well. Nathan has written professionally for various outlets, including TheGamer and the Scottish Games Network. When not writing, he enjoys good books, good TV, and analysing both within an inch of their life.