Here's where to find Cartridge blueprints and how to use them in Atomic Heart.

Atomic Heart: How to Use Cartridges

Here's where to find Cartridge blueprints and how to use them in Atomic Heart.

When all that stands between a rampaging mutant gnawing off your head in Atomic Heart is a blade wrapped to a stick with barbed-wire, you need an extra advantage. What if that blade set things on fire? Or froze them in place? Well, wonder no longer. Thanks to Cartridges you can turn your weapons into all manner of element-infused damage dealers. It’s as simple process once you know how, and we are going to walk you through it in this guide to Atomic Heart Cartridges. 

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How to Get Cartridges in Atomic Heart

Cartridges are optional items that can infuse weapons with certain Polymer-based abilities. They have a limited number of times they can be used before they run empty, after which your weapon returns to normal function. You can always insert a new Cartridge, if you are so inclined. 

Screenshot by GameSkinny

You can put a Cartridge into almost weapon in Atomic Heart, but you’ll need to upgrade them first. We have a full guide to this, but the gist is to visit any of the NORA upgrade stations, select the Cartridge slot upgrade, and spend the required materials to unlock it.

Once a slot has been unlocked you could apply additional upgrades to enhance how well it works, but that is purely optional. But in order to use these slots, you need Cartridges themselves.

Screenshot by GameSkinny

If your goal is to scavenge them, focus especially on chests and other large containers. Use Charles to vacuum everything up. If you have room in your inventory, any Cartridge you find will be immediately available. If you don’t have space, it will get sent to your storage and be accessible from NORA. 

Where to Get Cartridge Blueprints

If you are more of the crafting type, you will need to have the blueprint. There are three blueprints to collect, all in the Vavillov Complex near the start of the game:

  • The Electric Cartridge is in the Algae Workshop breakroom.
  • The Ice Cartridge is in a chest near the Hot Workshop, also in the Vavillov Complex. 
  • The Fire Cartridge is in the upper area of the Seed Bank.

Once you have a Cartridge Recipe visit NORA, and you can create as many Cartridges as you have the materials for. 

How to use Cartridges in Atomic Heart

You’ve got Cartridges and Cartridge ready weapons. Now it’s time to put them together. To do this you need to have both the weapon and Cartridge on your personal inventory, and make sure the weapon you intend to use is equipped.  

Open your weapon wheel, and highlight the bottom most zone, and press the button corresponding to “Select”.

Screenshot by GameSkinny

A menu with available Cartridges will pop up. Select which Cartridge you want, and P3 will pop in into the weapon. Now you can fry, freeze, and shock enemies to your heart’s content, until the Cartridge runs dry. 

Screenshot by GameSkinny

Now that you know how to get and use cartridges in Atomic Heart, you’ve got element-infused weapons for taking on some of the optional challenges, like Testing Ground 9. Check out some of our other Atomic Heart guides here on GameSkinny.

Featured image by GameSkinny

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Justin Koreis
Justin is a married father of two, has too many pets, and is a life-long gamer. When he's not in the virtual world he specializes in live event production, designing events for corporate clients such as Microsoft and Nintendo.