Difficulty

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When starting a game, there are five difficulties to choose from to determine the number of specimens each wave has, how fast and strong they are and how much money they give to a player when killed. The length of the game must also be chosen. When joining a game, the difficulty level is indicated on the left side of the server information row; one green bar for Beginner, two yellow bars for Normal, three orange bars for Hard, four red bars for Suicidal, and a red skull for Hell On Earth. Be sure and check the difficulty of the servers before you join, as you may be ill-prepared to assist your squad on higher difficulties.

Easy.png Beginner[edit]

This difficulty is recommended for first-time players as they need to know their way around the map before getting into the real game-play. Specimens in this difficulty are extremely fragile at 50% of their base health and moving with 95% speed. The specimen count in each wave is very low, specimens do 30% of melee base damage, 37.5% of ranged damage and yield doubled bounties of base value for reward when killed. Your armor is overall 70% more durable in this difficulty and absorb up 93% of the damage from most specimen attacks instead of default 77%. Other than Siren screams and anything from the Patriarch, everything else reduced to chip damage for a player with armor. Players spawn with £300. There is also Trader time extension of 50%, giving you 30 seconds more for getting ready for another wave. Ammo boxes and random weapon spawns are abundant they always replenish pipe bombs and grenades. No tactics are really needed to win this difficulty regardless of whether with a squad or playing a solo game. Even the Patriarch, compared to other difficulties, should be relatively easy to defeat and get nerfed on his ranged attack damage next to default 25% less melee damage while playing solo.

Normal.png Normal[edit]

This difficulty is for players that have played through beginner a couple of times and think they're ready for something more challenging. Player armor from this difficulty on only absorbs damage at base 77% rate, losing its extra efficiency from Beginner. The specimens have base health and hit at their base damage which is a significant change as repetitive hits take quite bit of players health. Players spawn with £250 and Trader time is back to its default base value of one minute. Bounty from every specimen is reduced by half to their base value and their damage output increased by 2-3 fold roughly in comparison with the beginner level. Random weapon spawns and ammo boxes are still abundant and scavenging by the end of the wave is even profitable. Aside from weapon spawns, the ammunition ammo boxes replenish grenades and pipebombs with 50% chance. Big specimen should fall quickly to sustained fire without any tactics required and lower threat specimen only deadly if player steps out of position to corner themselves. The Patriarch is now a solid threat to those beginning the game and looking for a challenge in a full squad or solo. Patriarch gets a nerf on ranged attack damage on solo besides the default 25% damage nerf for his solo game melee damage at this difficulty. Normal mode does require team work and shouldn't be underestimated by a player just starting out.

Hard.png Hard[edit]

This mode is for players who have leveled up their perks a bit and feel like normal is no longer a challenge. The amount of specimens per wave is stepped up and their health is increased by 35% from normal along with damage by 25%. The specimens also have a 15% increase in speed. Players start with £250. Random weapon spawns in the map is way less active but still profitable to check often. Ammo boxes that replenish weapon ammunition now has 25% chance to replenish grenades and pipebombs. Big specimen now slightly faster and hit notably harder but still would fall to focused fire from high tier weapons with ease. Ranged threats start to become a nuisance by this difficulty and players will face combinated specimen groups attacking at once more often now with more durable ranged threats. Small fast specimen damage will be notable but not enough to be of disturbance unless player get cornered. Killing the Patriarch on this difficulty requires abit of foresight and teamwork compared to previous difficulties as its damage amplified to being borderline lethal. Patriarch's melee damage leaving squad members an inch away from death if they wear no kevlar. Patriarch's ranged damage stays same for solo games from this difficulty onward and only his melee damage gets a 25% reduction for solo play. Especially for a relatively unleveled team, standing at too close would cause a swift wipe in the boss wave. Strategy and timing is important to position after trader time to hold or choose a direction to run in organization.

Suicide.png Suicidal[edit]

The amount of specimens in each wave is greatly increased compared to the other difficulties, and compared to base Normal difficulty their health increased by 55% and damage by 50%. In addition to the stat boosts, specimen are moving 22% faster compared to Normal difficulty. Players spawn with £200 at the start of the game and bounty from specimen are 20% lower; those who get most of the kills should donate to those who are in need of money and equipment. Random weapon spawns are now scarce and it depends on luck to find a sell worthy weapon. Ammo boxes now only have 20% chance to replenish grenades and pipe bombs.

The Patriarch decimates an unwary team with ease with its significantly swift movement and damage. In this difficulty Patriarch can one hit kill any team member with no damage mitigation from kevlar, nor perk bonuses such as a high level Berserker. Tactics are essential and without teamwork a squad will fail relatively quickly. Higher threats now require you to manage reloads and control gun recoil to dispatch them properly. Ranged threats are now really disorienting with their damage, movement speed and attack frequency, making them harder to ignore. Smaller specimen will be faster and Clot's grip will be stronger by this difficulty, making it hard to get away from them once pinned. Small specimen will spawn anywhere which deemed out of sightline quickly to flank player with other narrowing threats. Any player acting alone can be easily overrun if they were to not respect spawn rates to score large amount of specimen kills as game starts to retaliate harder for punishing cheesy techniques.

Additional modifications were made to make the game harder:

  • Removing the ability to break free of a Clot's hold by jumping
  • Increasing Fleshpound crossbow headshot resistance from 50% to 65%
  • Increasing Scrake Crossbow headshot resistance to 50%
  • Scrake now enrage at 75% of maximum health instead of 50%
  • Scrake now have a brief inner cooldown for melee flinches
  • Removing combat armour from the set of items with which a Level 6 Berserker can spawn
  • Nullifying 5% maximum movement speed bonus of Field Medic

Note that most servers at this difficulty will only allow 4-5+ perks. For a seasoned veteran who know which weapons to stick with, comfort zone can go lower as lvl2 and lvl3 perks but the low discounts at that level will make those hard to possess. By medium level perks, speedkills on big threats shall work on this difficulty with no complex tasks for other teammates to burden under for.

HellonEarth.png Hell on Earth[edit]

The Hell on Earth difficulty level was added in the 2010 Christmas Update. Like the old Suicidal (Suicidal decreased in difficulty during the update), in relation to Normal difficulty, specimens have 75% more health, inflict 75% more damage, move 30% faster. Players spawn with £100, lose 30% of their income on death and have 35% less income from kills and wave survival. Random weapon spawns are rare to come by now so scavenging may take a long time to gain any profits off from it. Ammo boxes are rare too and only have 14% chance to replenish grenades and pipe bombs. Last man standing or more than two-three casualty sceneries have to be planned through by changing perk to low upkeep equipment for respawn. Not only money sharing is now important as waves progress but managing trader time at late waves is crucial for team's positioning and mismanaging the time will impact their decision on hold spots.

Patriarch is a deadly force with higher health, damage, faster attack animations and speed. His melee damage reaches the point of killing any player with about half armor in one swing. While capable of killing any non-kevlar wearing Berserker under level 5, he also can break a full kevlar in one simple hit besides Medic's improved kevlar. Big specimen requires team orientated approaches for trash clearing, proper aggro taking and sometimes crowd control if something breaches in. Besides reload management and recoil control, high accuracy is encouraged to get rid of high threats quickly before they create a mayhem to pillow smaller specimen behind. Ranged threats are unbearingly quick and accurate, causing squad to prioritize them before heading in for a killing blow to the bigger specimen. All middle threat specimen will try to evade shots, shuffle back and steer to use other specimen as a meat shield or scatter attention for a combinated attack from bigger threats.

Increased specimen health makes it pretty common to get in heated close contact with big specimen before dispatching them. This giving specimen an edge while smaller specimen will become dangerous by movement speed bonuses. Low threat specimen will position themselves to block your shots and overwhelm you if you were to fail to dispatch bigger targets right away. With their randomized movement speed bonuses compared to each other, they can create meat shields infront of higher threats like a hivemind. Small specimen can be seen circling the squad members more often to block their evacuation and cross flank them. Clots tend to patrol right behind corners, abusing blind spots, waiting to flank while loner players are busy with ranged or bigger threats. Small framed specimen may spawn anywhere deemed as out of player sightline given the right conditions. Spawn rates become tighter and stronger specimen will fill the roster quickly on mass killing to flush players out of position by flanks on choke points.

Additional modifications were made to make the game harder:

  • Removing the ability to break free of a Clot's hold by jumping
  • Increasing Fleshpound crossbow headshot resistance from 50% to 65%
  • Doubling Fleshpound rage duration
  • Increasing Scrake Crossbow headshot resistance to 50%
  • Scrake now enrage at 75% of maximum health instead of 50%
  • Scrake now have a brief inner cooldown for melee flinches
  • Removing combat armour from the set of items with which a Level 6 Berserker can spawn
  • Nullifying 5% maximum movement speed bonus of Field Medic
  • Reducing 9mm headshot bonus for Sharpshooters from 140% to 40%

Note that most servers at this difficulty can choose to filter out players lower than level 5 or level 6 perks. For a veteran player it's possible to stay alive by your own terms as a lvl3-4 perk in this difficulty when you stick to the right equipment but besides insufficient discounts, you'll also be very reliant on other players sweeping the trash for you when you decide to step forward. ll

Difficulty modifiers[edit]

Difficulty Beginner Normal Hard Suicidal Hell on Earth
Damage 30% 100% 125% 150% 175%
Health 50% 100% 135% 155% 175%
Speed 95% 100% 115% 122% 130%
Bounty 200% 100% 85% 65% 65%
Enemy Count 70% 100% 130% 150% 170%
Starting Dosh 120% 100% 100% 80% 60%

See also[edit]

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