Helldivers 2 Difficulty Levels – Everything You Should Know

From "Trivial" to "Helldive"

A view of the planet on Helldive difficulty in Helldivers 2

Helldivers 2 is a difficult game, we all know that. To help tailor your experience, the game comes with nine difficulty tiers, ranging from “Trivial” to the daunting “Helldive,” where each level brings its own set of challenges and rewards. Starting from the basic operations of “Trivial,” players must progressively unlock higher difficulty levels by completing full operations.

This guide offers a comprehensive breakdown of what to expect at each difficulty level, including enemy types, mission objectives, and the rewards for successful completion. Whether you are a Cadet or a seasoned Helldiver, understanding these tiers is crucial for mastering the game and achieving ultimate success in defending Super Earth.

Overview

In Helldivers 2, players can choose from 9 different difficulty levels. Everyone starts at difficulty 1, labeled “Trivial,” and must complete an operation at this level to unlock the next difficulty.

For new players, you have to start at “Trivial“. You can’t immediately jump to “Helldive” or another difficulty from the start. Beginning at “Trivial“, each subsequent level requires the completion of a full operation before unlocking the next level.

The only way to “jump” to a higher difficulty is through another Helldiver’s ship. For example, if you join a friend’s ship, and they have “Helldive” unlocked, you can play on said difficulty. Completing an operation in this fashion will unlock the difficulty for you and any prior locked difficulty levels.

1 – Trivial

The trivial difficulty in Helldivers 2

Ideal for grasping the fundamental elements of Helldivers 2. Operations feature a single mission.

  • Description: Primary Objectives, Enemy Patrols
  • Recommended Level: 1-3
  • Missions per Operation: 1
  • New Enemies:
    • Terminids: Scavengers, Bile Scavengers, Hunters, Warriors, Brood Commanders
    • Automatons: Raiders, Marauders, Dropships, Devastators (mission-based)
  • Rewards (full completion):
    • Common Samples: 12-16
    • Medals: 1

2 – Easy

The easy difficulty in Helldivers 2

Slightly more complex than Trivial, incorporating additional essential game mechanics.

  • Description: Allied Tactical Objectives, Light Outposts
  • Recommended Level: 1-5
  • Missions per Operation: 1
  • Side Objectives: 1
  • New Enemies:
    • Automatons: Commissars, Berserkers, Devastators
  • Rewards (full completion):
    • Common Samples: 15-17
    • Medals: 2

3 – Medium

The medium difficulty in Helldivers 2

The final beginner tier; significantly more challenging, with tougher, heavily-armored foes.

  • Description: Allied Tactical Objectives, Light Outposts
  • Recommended Level: 5-10
  • Missions per Operation: 2
  • Side Objectives: 1
  • New Enemies:
    • Terminids: Stalkers, Hive Guards, Nursing Spewers, Bile Spewers, Chargers (mission-based)
    • Automatons: Scout Striders, Shield Devastators, Rocket Devastators, Cannon Towers, Tanks, Annihilator Tanks, Hulks (mission-based)
  • Rewards (full completion):
    • Common Samples: 18-22
    • Medals:
      • First Mission: 2
      • Second Mission: 4
  • XP Multiplier: +25%

4 – Challenging

The challenging difficulty in Helldivers 2

Marks the start of moderate difficulty, making solo play significantly tougher.

  • Description: Enemy Tactical Objectives, Heavy Outposts, Heavily Armored Enemies
  • Recommended Level: 10-15
  • Missions per Operation: 2
  • Side Objectives: 2-3
  • New Enemies:
    • Terminids: Chargers, Bile Titans (mission-based)
    • Automatons: Hulks, Factory Strider (mission-based)
  • Rewards (full completion):
    • Common Samples: 21-25
    • Rare Samples: 12-15
    • Medals:
      • First Mission: 3
      • Second Mission: 5
  • XP Multiplier: +50%

5 – Hard

The hard difficulty in Helldivers 2

A major increase in difficulty, introducing the largest enemies and operation modifiers.

  • Description: Operation Modifiers, Massive Enemies, Heavily Armored Enemies
  • Recommended Level: 15-20
  • Missions per Operation: 3
  • Side Objectives: 2-3
  • New Enemies:
    • Terminids: Shriekers, Bile Titans
    • Automatons: Gunships
  • Rewards (full completion):
    • Common Samples: 26-30
    • Rare Samples: 18-20
    • Medals:
      • First Mission: 4
      • Second Mission: 6
      • Third Mission: 8
  • XP Multiplier: +75%

6 – Extreme

The extreme difficulty in Helldivers 2

Similar to Hard, but with additional tactical objectives, testing your efficiency.

  • Description: Tactical Objectives Increase, Massive Enemies, Heavily Armored Enemies
  • Recommended Level: 20+
  • Missions per Operation: 3
  • Side Objectives: 3-4
  • Rewards (full completion):
    • Common Samples: 31-35
    • Rare Samples: 21-25
    • Medals:
      • First Mission: 5
      • Second Mission: 7
      • Third Mission: 9
  • XP Multiplier: +100%

7 – Suicide Mission

The suicide mission difficulty in Helldivers 2

Enemies are numerous and relentless; stealth tactics can be beneficial to avoid large fights.

  • Description: Tactical Objectives Increase, Massive Enemies, Heavily Armored Enemies
  • Recommended Level: 25+
  • Missions per Operation: 3
  • Side Objectives: 3-4
  • New Enemies:
    • Automatons: Factory Strider
  • Rewards (full completion):
    • Common Samples: 36-40
    • Rare Samples: 25-30
    • Super Rare Samples: 3
    • Medals:
      • First Mission: 6
      • Second Mission: 8
      • Third Mission: 10
  • XP Multiplier: +150%

8 – Impossible

The impossible difficulty in Helldivers 2

Only well-coordinated and experienced teams with optimal builds can survive these operations.

  • Description: Increased Enemy Presence, Multiple Operation Modifiers, Heavily Armored Enemies
  • Recommended Level: 30+
  • Missions per Operation: 3
  • Side Objectives: 4-5
  • Rewards (full completion):
    • Common Samples: 40
    • Rare Samples: 31-35
    • Super Rare Samples: 5
    • Medals:
      • First Mission: 7
      • Second Mission: 10
      • Third Mission: 12
  • XP Multiplier: +200%

9 – Helldive

The helldive difficulty in Helldivers 2

The ultimate challenge for defending Super Earth, with nonstop enemies and multiple operation modifiers. What nightmares are made of. GFL.

  • Description: Increased Enemy Presence, Multiple Operation Modifiers, Heavily Armored Enemies
  • Recommended Level: 40+
  • Missions per Operation: 3
  • Side Objectives: 4-5
  • Rewards (full completion):
    • Common Samples: 40
    • Rare Samples: 36-40
    • Super Rare Samples: 6
    • Medals:
      • First Mission: 8
      • Second Mission: 11
      • Third Mission: 14
  • XP Multiplier: +250%

Tackling the different difficulty levels in Helldivers 2 is all about teamwork and strategy. As you move from “Trivial” to “Helldive,” you’ll face tougher enemies and more complex missions, but you’ll also earn better rewards. Whether you’re a newbie or a seasoned pro, this guide will help you navigate each level. So gear up, team up, and dive in to defend Super Earth. Good luck, Helldivers!

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Ethan is the founder of Shark Games and oversees all site content. He's been a dedicated (mainly PlayStation) gamer for over 15 years, netting him over 4,100 Trophies; 27 of which are Platinum. Over this time, he has developed a passion for both digital card games and story-driven adventure games. He's reached the "Legend" rank in both Standard and Wild modes in Hearthstone. God of War Ragnarok is his favorite game of all time, and he's 100% completed every game in the Ratchet and Clank franchise. He also sucks at League of Legends.