The physical dangers in Aliens: Dark Descent might be obvious, but there are also plenty of mental ones to be wary of. The most disadvantageous of the latter are Traumas, and you’ll need to know how to help your Marines when they fall subject to them. Here’s what you need to know about them and how to remove them.
What are Traumas in Aliens: Dark Descent? Explained
You’ve likely noticed that a Marine’s stress increases across three levels, with a random debuff being assigned for each one. Your Marines will also accumulate Trauma Points, which are represented by red pips on the Marine Report screen you’ll see after a deployment. Reaching three points results in Marines gaining a random one once they return.
Traumas are a much more potent debuff that typically piles on additional stress. More extreme versions can be attached when a Marine has another three and six points, respectively. With that in mind, you’ll want to know how to get rid of them.
How to Remove Traumas in Aliens: Dark Descent
The best way to prevent Traumas is by managing your squad’s stress levels. Many deployments are bound to get hectic and stress your Marines, such as when you stumble across an Alien Queen. Thankfully, there are two methods for dealing with these debuffs:
- Sending Marines to therapy at the Psychiatric Care Unit.
- Acquiring the Mind of Steel attribute.
Aliens: Dark Descent Psychiatric Care Unit Explained
One of the most helpful parts of the Otago becomes available once you complete the second mission. Run by Dr. Kabiri, the Psychiatric Care Unit is meant to provide therapy for your Marines and watch over their mental health. In-game, this is represented by a therapy process that removes two Trauma points each day for up to four Marines.
Although you can take Marines out at any time, and they only need to have less than three points to lose these stressors, my recommendation is to keep them in the PCU until they’re in prime condition again. It’s a good excuse to focus on giving your other Marines mission experience, as well.
The Mind of Steel Attribute
The other method for removing debuffs is the Mind of Steel attribute. Any Marine with this attribute will be able to fully recover after three days. This can be extremely helpful to have since you can focus your limited therapy slots on other affected soldiers.
While this is a common attribute that any Marine can have, it’s important to remember that those are acquired from a pool randomly. There’s no guarantee that each (or any) Marine will be able to get it, and during my time playing the campaign, I only had around five that acquired it.
The Complete List of Aliens: Dark Descent Traumas
There are 11 different Traumas, and nearly each one will result in more stress damage. Here’s a list and explanation for each one:
- Depressive: Marine deploys with additional stress damage.
- Pyrophobia: Marine takes stress damage whenever the Incineration skill is used or if an Oil Puddle is set on fire.
- Borderline: Stress relief from Naproleve or Resting is increased, but all stress damage is also.
- Hypochondriac: The Marine takes stress damage every second you spend without Medical Supplies.
- Claustrophobia: Resting does not decrease a Marine’s stress.
- Paranoid: Marine takes stress damage every second if a squad has more than three active marines.
- Hematophobia: Marine takes stress damage every second if a Marine is suffering from a Hemorrhage.
- Anthrophobia: Marine takes stress damage every second they see a human enemy.
- Obsessive: Reloading takes longer.
- Robophobia: Marine takes stress damage every second they see an enemy or allied synthetic.
- Xenomorphobia: Marine takes stress damage every second they see a xenomorph.
Traumas play a big part in Aliens: Dark Descent, and hopefully, they’re easier to understand now that you know how to get rid of them. For those still early into the campaign and feeling unsure about the difficulty, our custom difficulty guide can help you fine-tune the right amount of challenge. If you’d like to avoid any real-life stress, check out our guide on how to rotate sentry guns. We’ve also covered how to remove facehuggers.