city of ephyra in hades 2 surface level
Screenshot by GameSkinny

How to Unlock Surface Levels in Hades 2

Here's how to unlock surface levels in Hades 2.

One of the biggest differences between Hades 2 and the original is the alternative paths you can take and visit different areas. This mechanic is unlocked through the surface levels as you try to reach Olympus. Here’s how to unlock surface levels in Hades 2.

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How to Go To the Surface in Hades 2

To unlock the surface route, you need to complete the Permeation of Witching-Wards incantation and then the Unraveling a Fateful Bond incantation to remove the HP drain on the surface. Permeation of Witching-Wards officially unlocks the surface route for this incantation. You need the following materials to go to the surface in Hades 2:

  • 1 Cinder: Hecate boss material.
  • 3 Moly: Hand-picked in Erebus.
  • 1 Shadow: Crafted in the Cauldron Alchemy tab for 30 Ash, 30 Psyche, and 3 Fate Fabric.

Permeation of Witching-Wards incantation is unlocked by talking to Hermes for the first time and then gaining his Boon where he tells you Melinoe’s help is needed on Olympus. After that, you need to reach the Hecate boss and discuss going to the surface with her. After finishing that run and reaching her again, the Permeation of Witching-Wards Incantation will appear in the Cauldron.

Once you visit the surface for the first time you’ll notice that your HP drains fast. Essentially, you need to complete one more incantation called Unraveling a Fateful Bond to remove this drain. Luckily, Moros gives it to you the first time you die on the surface, but it requires Thalamus, which is a rare seed.

How to Find Thalamus in Hades 2

For the Unraveling a Fateful Bond incantation that stops HP drain on the surface you need:

  • 2 Thalamus: This is a flower grown from the Seed of Origin which you can dig up with the Spade in Chaos’ realm. These are those special gates that randomly appear in a level and drain your health to enter. The first time you enter one after visiting the surface, Chaos will give you one for free, and then you need to enter the Chaos realm again and get lucky for a digging spot to spawn. Once you get a Seed of Origin, plant it in the Crossroads, and be sure to increase your planting spots to make this easier.
  • 2 Moss: You need to enter the first surface-level City of Ephyra and rush to get two of these green hand-picked materials before the HP drain kills you. You won’t be able to enter the boss area with Polyphemus either way, so feel free to just frantically run around and look for Moss, it’s usually in the first two locations.
  • 2 Lotus: Hand-picked in Oceanus.
  • 2 Nightshade: Dig up the seeds for it in Erebus.

Plop all of these in a Cauldron and now you can freely explore the surface levels in Hades 2. For more Hades 2 guides, check out the best Hades boons.


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Gordan Perisic
From playing RPGs and dungeon mastering for his D&D group to reading novels and scribbling about his fantasy setting, Gordan is a full-time nerd and devoted writer for GameSkinny. He loves to overshare and discuss literature, music, animation, and trees with fellow geeks. Also, he may or may not cook too much food for his friends. Cholesterol is one hell of a drug.