The Helldivers universe is one of noble soldiers, heroic deeds, and heartfelt, unflinching patriotism in the face of giant acid-spewing bug monsters.


“I personally love writing for a game with opportunities for comedy, and that doesn’t take itself too seriously. I hope I can find a game like that soon…”

– Stephen Flowers, Game Writer, Arrowhead Game Studios


If you want to catch up with the story of Super Earth and her valiant defenders before Helldivers 2 launched on February 8, read on. Plus, we share the first news that the story will continue in post-launch Helldivers 2 updates.

Since Helldivers…

Helldivers 2 takes place a century after the events of the first game, with Super Earth having emerged victorious against its adversaries – the deadly, bug-like Terminids, the grotesque Cyborgs and the inscrutable Illuminates. With its foes vanquished and the Galactic War won, an era of peace and prosperity ensued. The Helldivers, Super Earth’s elite task force, were dismissed.

Super Earth entered its most peaceful and prosperous years.

The same faster-than-light travel technology, heroically liberated from the Illuminates, that gave Super Earth access to the galaxy, has since been used to colonize it. This period has come to be known as The Great Democratization. FTL technology is reliant on a steady supply of the precious substance E-710 which, luckily, can be found in decomposing Terminid bodies. So naturally, Super Earth has been farming Terminids on an industrial scale. 

The success of Super Earth depends on the hard work of citizens.

Why Super Earth needs you

In a shocking turn of events, the Terminids have broken free of their farms and begun spreading throughout the galaxy. The Super Earth Armed Forces have been struggling to quarantine them on their farm planets, but are stretched thin – so when a mysterious new enemy enters the fray, Super Earth has no choice but to mobilize the Helldivers once again. 

The Automatons are fully mechanized soldiers of a kind never seen before. But their emblem is eerily familiar …

It is now up to you, Helldiver, to don your cape and take back Super Earth’s colonies once and for all. You will be fighting these vile, freedom-hating foes on two fronts, as Super Earth works to implement a solution to the Terminid scourge.

Super Earth calls upon the Helldivers once again.

Doing your part

As the Helldivers battle the foes of Super Earth, you will not only change the face of the galaxy, but the course of its history. Super Earth will issue global, time-sensitive Major Orders, challenging all players to work together to achieve large-scale goals, the outcome of which will shape the story going forward. Meaning, the story is not something that happens to players, but something the players themselves have to actively make happen.


What’s unique about the story of Helldivers 2 is that it’s driven by the player community. Planning for that is a huge challenge – we have what we think will happen, but we ultimately can’t control what the players do. Which as a player I find cool, but as a writer I find really scary.

As for the story ahead, all I can say is that the galaxy will look very different a few months from now than it does today.

– Stephen Flowers, Game Writer, Arrowhead Game Studios


Can the Helldivers pull together to defend vital strategic outposts against overwhelming numbers, or complete grand story missions before another faction makes their move? Not only time, but the blood, sweat and mangled bodies of Helldivers will tell.

The continuing war

Super Earth’s struggle for supremacy doesn’t end there—your future as a Helldiver is secure! There’s so much more to come as we expand the game’s content offering. We’re excited to confirm that as players fight in the Galactic War, they will also witness events unfold through our planned free updates. The universe of Helldivers 2 will grow and change to give our players refreshed gameplay, introducing new tools, new challenges, and new threats from around the galaxy.

Helldivers 2 releases on PS5 and PC this Thursday, February 8. Pre-load is available on both platforms today.

PSN account required. Gameplay requires internet access and paid for PlayStation®Plus membership (sold separately) on PS5. PlayStation Plus membership subject to recurring subscription fee taken automatically until cancellation. Age restrictions apply. Full terms: play.st/psplus-usageterms.

Have you ever watched the anonymous soldiers of a sci-fi movie get obliterated by aliens and thought to yourself, “I could do better”? Helldivers 2 is Arrowhead Game Studios’ invitation to brave players dying to experience the chaotic fun of facing seemingly impossible odds.

For the uninitiated, Helldivers 2 is a full sequel that maintains the 4-player cooperative essence of the 2015 top-down PS4 entry, while adding modern over-the-shoulder third-person gunplay and deeper customization options.

I recently had a chance to suit up and drop into a hands-on session with Helldivers 2 on PS5, and lived to share this debriefing. I teamed up with three other Helldivers to learn the ropes and emerged with a whetted appetite for eliminating space bugs and murderous Automatons.

Let’s dive in.

Action sci-fi gunplay

Helldivers 2 is bursting with customization options and strategic depth, but shooting lots of enemies is your bread and butter. Arrowhead managed to translate the frenetic top-down energy of Helldivers into a smooth third-person shooter. Weapon recoil feels powerful yet predictable enough to maintain your accuracy. I specifically loved watching Automaton’s armor dent and shatter off as I punched them full of sniper rounds.

Players have options when it comes to gunplay. Hold the Square button to switch between single, burst, and autofire. Press L2 to shoulder your weapon and zoom in with R2. Click R3 button to aim-down-sights for even deeper precision and immersion. The direction buttons are used for quick actions, like switching to grenades by pressing right or pressing for a life-restoring stim. Remember to save a few ‘nades to close up bug nests or destroy enemy factories.

The moment-to-moment action is tight and reliable, which is key when all hell inevitably breaks loose.

The gameplay loop

Blasting deadly bugs and robots is a reward in itself, but Arrowhead has plenty of progression options to keep soldiers motivated. Visit Ship Management after a mission to unlock new Stratagems like the deadly Orbital Laser or Bulwark machine gun. Use valuable Samples collected on missions to upgrade Strategems to more powerful versions, like the Donation Access License which increases the number of magazines in your weapons.

The Helldivers Mobilize menu allows you to customize your Helldiver with gear that’s both stylish and offers gameplay benefits. For example, the SC-34 Infiltrator body armor includes a passive boost called Scout, which boosts radar scan abilities and makes you harder to detect. Once you’ve unlocked and upgraded your options, it’s time to select the next mission, jump in the Hell Pod, choose your gear and Stratagem loadout, and begin again.

Your starship headquarters

Players rally on the bridge of their ship, which serves as hub of operations in Helldivers 2 (complete with customizable name). The militaristic sci-fi ship is outfitted with NPCs, an armory for outfitting your Helldiver, and a giant glowing holographic planet detailing the next mission destination. Accessing the hologram also showcases community stats like total active Helldivers, enemies killed, Helldivers killed in action, and bullets fired. The planetary map also offers a strategic overview of the map, letting players see key objections, extraction points, and choose their drop zones.

Stratagem highlights

Stratagems are Helldivers’ critical lifeline to the might of the orbiting military ships. These equippable commands include supply drops, orbital attacks, deployable defenses, and more. Players execute Stratagems by holding L1 and inputting a code with the directional buttons, similar to entering old-school video game cheat codes. Stratagems become available again after a cooldown period. The process of using a Stratagem is easy outside combat, but accuracy can go out the window when battles break out.

Check out some Stratagems that stood out to me as especially valuable and satisfying:

Orbital Laser – A massive beam of energy projects from above, scorching enemy forces in a spectacular and deadly display.

Tesla Tower – This deployable defense electrifies nearby foes with sprawling Tesla coils. Don’t drop it too close to your crew.

Anti-Material Rifle – At least one Helldiver should pack this high-powered sniper rifle. The range and impact punches through enemy armor like butter.

Stalwart – This machine gun packs a punch and beefy ammo capacity. Drop it at the beginning of the mission so you or your allies can equip it.

Anti-Tank Missile – A devastating projectile that can down bigger foes in one shot. Partner with another Helldiver to speed up the reload process, but watch out for the recoil blast.

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Game mode variety

Arrowhead has a host of mission types for Helldivers to drop into. Horde mode involves defending a key area, which means it’s valuable to equip Stratagems like deployable sentry guns or Tesla Towers and group-protecting shields. Bug nest extermination missions involve wiping out clusters of eggs, so grenades and wide-radius precision orbital strikes come in handy. My favorite mode was Automaton Control, which involved closing down lethal robot assembly lines by gunning down enemies and tossing grenades into the factory vents.

Dive!

Chaos is bound to break out even amongst well-oiled Helldiver teams. Thankfully, pressing the Circle button makes your soldier dive for safety. Teammate accidentally calls in an Orbital Strike on top of your head? Dive! Suddenly step into your own sentry guns’ line of fire? Dive! Looking for a needlessly dramatic entrance into the fray? You guessed it… dive!

Friendly fire everywhere

Carelessness will get you killed on the battlefields of Helldivers 2. Your teammates’ bullets are agnostic, and shredding one another is lethally easy. This extends to your own deployed mines, gatling turrets, Tesla Towers, and more. Survival means keeping your head on a swivel and overcommunicating when your fellow soldier is about to be squashed by a supply drop. Expect to chew through some lives thanks to hilarious, spectacular fails.

Speaking of fails, teams share a pool of lives which depletes each time a player dies. You can quickly redeploy a replacement Helldiver by inputting a contextual Stratagem code, and even choose where their Hell Pod drops. Players can tune their drop location on the way back to the battlefield, either to land in safety or crush an enemy with a lucky landing. In my experience, the number of lives was well tuned for the increasing difficulty arc as we remained on the planet, just enough to keep the tension alive.

Procedurally generated maps

Every drop feels new thanks to Arrowhead’s procedurally generated maps. You’ll explore biomes like a tropical jungle, craggy lunar surface, gray rocky planet bristling with exotic red flora, and much more. The layout of the environment changes as well, meaning enemy bases, secondary objectives, and the terrain itself will present unique scenarios for each mission.

One example shared by Arrowhead involved a duo of bug nests standing between players and the extraction point. The bugs swarmed the lone path leading to their exit, but the numbers were too great to defeat. The Helldivers strategized by calling in a smoke screen Stratagem to blind the bugs and sneak past to victory. This is just one example of how shifting mission layouts can result in emergent war stories.

Make handy work of your robotic foes by equipping a high-powered sniper rifle.

Galactic War

Arrowhead looks at Helldivers 2 as a “global co-op” game. The entire player base combines forces to fight encroaching enemies for the liberty of Super Earth. The galactic map is made up of sectors, and each is composed of planetary clusters. When the community clears out all planets in a sector, it’s then claimed for Super Earth and participating players receive a reward. The liberation effort is represented by a progress bar on the map.

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Prepare for incoming waves by dropping a spray of proximity mines. But watch out, Helldives can detonate them, too.

Orders & Effects

Arrowhead has a Game Master in the studio who sets Major Orders for the community to unite and complete for community rewards. One Major Order example in effect during my hands-on involved extracting from a successful mission three times. There are also cycling Environmental Conditions to consider, like Extreme Cold which reduces the rate of fire and delays heat buildup in weapons. Paying attention to conditions can help players plan for a smooth mission and equip gear and Stratagems that suit the planetary environment.

This is only a taste of what the treacherous yet rewarding life of a Helldiver entails. You can enlist and test your survival skills on interplanetary battlefields when Helldivers 2 drops on PS5 February 8.

One of the key features of Helldivers 2 is The Galactic War. Super Earth’s territories are under siege on all fronts by monstrous enemies hell-bent on destroying humanity’s way of life. From the war table aboard your ship, your team can watch as the conflict unfolds and take part in battles across the universe. Do your part to advance the frontlines in the name of Freedom and Managed Democracy.


Helldivers 2 Galactic War gameplay detailed: complete missions, reclaim planets, rescue the galaxy

The Helldivers

Helldivers are the true heroes of Super Earth. As an elite soldier, you have the full might of Super Earth’s arsenal at your disposal. Use your lethal array of stratagems and weaponry to defend its colonizers and liberate planets from enemy forces.

Rise through the ranks and take on increasingly difficult missions to solidify your place in Helldiver history – and if one Helldiver should perish, that’s just an opportunity for another Citizen to realize their dream. Prosperity and liberty are your core values and it’s your privilege to spread them.

The enemy factions

The robotic Automatons and the bug-like Termininds terrorize Super Earth citizens in the biggest conflict since the last Helldiver mobilization, over one hundred years ago. Each faction operates differently, and requires their own strategies – and stratagems – to face.

The work of a Helldiver never ends as more planets fall into the enemy’s clutches and the battle rages on. Play your part in an evolving war to reclaim planets for Super Earth and spread democracy and liberty to the furthest reaches of the galaxy. Conquer not only Super Earth’s foes but the elements themselves, as you brave a plethora of environmental hazards on the surface of alien worlds.

Missions and operations

Unite with your comrades in arms and monitor the conflict at the War Table together.

Assemble around the Galactic War map with your squad and choose your mission.

Once you choose a planet, the War Table will allow you to choose an operation to partake in. Operations consist of up to three missions, with a variety of primary objectives, like eradicating bug infestations, destroying enemy supplies, and retrieving valuable data.

You can strategize with your team and build your load-outs collaboratively to prepare for the challenge ahead.

Embark on a range of different missions, from taking down high value targets or launching missiles to strike the heart of enemy strongholds. While fighting on the frontlines, keep your eyes open for potential resources and intel to bring back to Super Earth researchers. Your progress contributes to the overall war effort, and brings you closer to liberating that sector of the galaxy.

Super Earth is depending on you. Enlist today—Hellpods drop when Helldivers 2 releases on February 8!

PSN account required. Gameplay requires internet access and paid for PlayStation Plus membership (sold separately) on PS5. PlayStation Plus membership subject to recurring subscription fee taken automatically until cancellation. Age restrictions apply. Full terms: play.st/psplus-usageterms.

We know it’s been a long wait but it’s finally time to reveal more about the PC release of Helldivers 2. We know what’s on your mind, first and foremost: Is it crossplay?

And we’re pleased to announce that Helldivers 2 supports crossplay! That means your teammates on PC can play with you on PS5 and vice versa. Community and teamwork are the most important pillars of Helldivers 2, and so it is essential to ensure players can work together regardless of the system they choose to use. Together we can celebrate victories, mourn losses, and liberate the galaxy without platform boundaries.


Helldivers 2 PC specifications and crossplay support details revealed

As part of this announcement, we’re also finally able to provide you with the minimum, recommended, performance, and ultra system specifications for PC players to ensure that no matter what kind of equipment your squad uses to play – PS5 or PC with a broad range of supported PC hardware – you’ll be able to spread Managed Democracy together.

Wondering if your PC can handle Helldivers 2? Here are our PC system specifications:

  MINIMUM RECOMMENDED PERFORMANCE ULTRA
AVG PERFORMANCE 1080p @ 30 FPS 1080p @ 60 FPS 1440p @ 60FPS 4K @ 60 FPS
GRAPHIC PRESETS Low Medium High Very High
GPU NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 Ti or AMD Radeon RX 470 NVIDIA GeForce GTX 2060 or AMD Radeon RX 6600 XT NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3070 or AMD Radeon RX 6800 NVIDIA GeForce RTX 4070 Ti or AMD Radeon RX 7900 XTX
CPU Intel Core i7-4790K or AMD Ryzen 5 1500X Intel Core i7-9700K or AMD Ryzen 7 3700X Intel Core i5-12600K or AMD Ryzen 7 5800X3D Intel Core i5-12600K or AMD Ryzen 7 5800X3D
RAM 8GB DDR4 16GB DDR4 16GB DDR4 16GB DDR4
OS Windows 10 64-bit Windows 10 64-bit Windows 10 64-bit Windows 10 64-bit
STORAGE 100GB HDD (7200rpm) 100 GB SSD 100 GB SSD 100 GB SSD

Now you’re armed with crossplay and the required specs to go on your very first dive. It’s not much longer to wait, recruits: Helldivers 2 is launching on February 8, and pre-orders are open now. We can’t wait to see you on the battlefield!

PlayStation Network Account Required. Gameplay requires internet access and paid for PlayStation Plus membership (sold separately) for PS5. PlayStation Plus membership subject to recurring subscription fee taken automatically until cancellation. Age restrictions apply. Full terms: play.st/psplus-usageterms.