That was…. revelry? People having a good time? Well, sure, then! In the name of Hades! Olympus, I’ll accept this message.
If you’re looking for a good time (for a long time), Dionysus is your man. At least, in Supergiant Games’ Hades, he is. In the real-life greek myths of Dionysus, things might be a bit more chaotic and maddening… Nonetheless, Hades’ Dionysus is a Hades Character that I, and many others, cannot get enough of.
He is the definition of a good time, and he’s attractive to boot. I fondly refer to him as Dio when I play, though that might just be me. His boons and mere presence in the game are positively intoxicating, bringing an experience to the table that I didn’t know I needed in my life.
Whether it’s the pop of a bottle and his laugh when you pick up his boon, the light-hearted and fun dialogue, the way he so quickly feels like your best mate or the absurdly powerful boon combinations he offers, the character featured in this Dionysus Hades guide is one of, if not the best, Olympian to chase after in Hades.
Just a Shot
Dionysus’ boons are absurdly powerful if you’ve got the right playstyle. A good portion of them are supportive – they boost the damage the Hangover effect deals and help to cover Zagreus‘ back when he throws himself into the middle of everything.
If you’re constantly finding yourself in the middle of the enemy pile, you need to utilize him. If his boons weren’t strong enough to entice you, his personality should be.
Dionysus is a fun-loving guy who’s just here to help Zagreus have a good time out there. The best build you can make with him is with Zeus, making you a tank and damage-dealing machine.
Aged Like Fine Wine
Dionysus wears a long, light purple chiton loosely belted at his waist. The bottom of his chiton flows out in a way very reminiscent of the smoke that comes from his cup. He wears a leopard skin cloak and gold bracer-like bangles on both arms.
Around his shoulders is the equivalent of a mantle, made out of grapevines, which seemingly wrap up into his hair. Instead of a laurel, Dionysus wears his grapes and grave vines on his head, with his dark purple hair loosely tied up.
A thyrsus rests at his side, a clever representation of the staff he and his followers wielded in both greek and roman mythology. In one hand, he holds a grape, and in the other, a small cup that constantly has purple smoke drifting up from it.
What’s Inside Counts Too
Dionysus is lighthearted and often just looking for a good time or the next celebration. He is thrilled to learn that Zagreus is collecting and passing out Nectar and Ambrosia, preferring that it is passed out to anyone and everyone rather than left to sit in a pile forever.
Despite their distance, he and Zagreus still manage to be close, sharing a fun and easy-going relationship, often referring to each other as best mates.
God of Wine
Dionysus’ simplified title is the God of Wine, though he is well known by the other gods as a free spirit and a party animal, often hosting the best parties.
He is beloved by mortals, possibly even more so than the other gods. In the Codex, Achilles theorizes that this is because “…Perhaps I ought to feel a kinship with this easygoing son of Zeus, for it is said that he has some mortal blood in him, not just divinity.
This may explain why he, among Olympians, is so well-loved by mortal-kind; because he loves them back, bringing to them more joy than suffering, for the most part.” Even if he does keep his distance from the underworld and, thus, his followers once they pass on, much like the other Olympians.
Follow the Purple Smoke
The only way to find Dionysus is to use his Keepsake, the Overflowing Cup. Prior to this, it’s really sheer luck that you will run into him during one of your early runs. In my last playthrough, I was fortunate enough to find him on my second escape attempt, though he should make his appearance during one of your first ten runs, depending on how far you get.
Not Black-Out Yet
In order to forge your bond with Dionysus, Zagreus needs to have forged at least six bonds and gifted at least ten Ambrosia. Considering that it took me about 40 hours to even get to the point where I reached his locked heart, this favor should be easily accomplished.
Harmless Fun at the Expense of Orpheus
At some point, likely after you have forged your bond with Dionysus, he will make a proposal to Zagreus. For some lighthearted, harmless fun, Dionysus suggests to Zagreus that he spin a tall tale for Orpheus to make a song about. Of course, Orpheus needs to believe whatever it is that Zagreus tells him, which, for some reason, he does.
Zag tells Orpheus that he and Dionysus are actually the same person, a cheeky reference to the convoluted myths surrounding both Zagreus and Dionysus in real life.
The Wall Scroll
Once you’ve given Dionysus two nectar, you will get the option to buy his wall scroll from the House Contractor. At that point, Zagreus can slap a poster of his best mate onto his wall to look at every time you dash through the room and out to the courtyard.
Dionysus does not like Theseus, and he makes this very clear after you encounter and defeat the King of Athens. He seems thrilled that Zagreus gets to beat the former king up, considering that he really doesn’t like the man, especially considering that he dumped Ariadne, who later became Dionysus’ wife, on an island after she helped him.
Regardless, occasionally Zag’s best mate will offer Theseus some power during the final fight in Elysium, though his attacks will almost always miss unless you intentionally run into them. Interestingly enough, it seems that his attacks can also affect Asterius and Theseus during the fight as well, unlike the aid from other gods.
Like all of the other Olympians, the only gift that you can get from Dionysus is his Keepsake, the Overflowing Cup. The Overflowing cup improves your chances of getting better boons with your best mate, and it summons him to your aid as the next boon you’ll find.
However, there is a chance that Hermes will beat Dionysus to the punch and get there first with the promise that your summoned god is on his way.
The Overflowing Cup keepsake grants you a +10% chance for rare or better boons from Dionysus at rank one. At rank two, you gain a 15% chance for rare or better, and at rank three, it goes up to a 20% chance.
Pair that with Olympian Favor talent from the Mirror of Night, and you are almost guaranteed to get rare or better boons from Dionysus.
No matter how high in affinity you get with Dionysus, it won’t affect the quality of boons you get. Instead, you either need to have his Keepsake and ranked it up or put Darkness into the Mirror of Night for the Olympian Favor talent, which raises the chance for rare boons.
If you want better than rare, you need to have put darkness in for the God’s Pride talent, which raises the chance for Legendary and Duo boons.
But why Dionysus?
Because why not? I thought he was your best mate. That alone is reason enough to pick him, but if you need a bit more coaxing, Dionysus’ boons let me kill Hades in just under two minutes in my last run.
Yeah, that’s right, two minutes. For other builds, it can take about five minutes, if not more. His boons can deal some serious damage, especially if paired with some of his duo boons.
The God of Wine’s boons fall into three distinct categories: Damage Dealers, Buffers, and Dependees. This last category is where his legendary and his duo boons fall, as they depend on the properties of other boons to function.
Drunken Strike and Flourish both apply the Hangover status effect to your enemies, which deals them extra damage – even when you’re not hitting them. This effect makes it easy to strike at an enemy and then dart off to slash at the next, leaving them to rapidly wither away and die without you having to do any extra work.
- Drunken Strike: Your attack applies the Hangover status effect to your foes. This one is my personal favorite when I am playing on PC because I really don’t use my special a lot.
- Drunken Flourish: Your special applies the Hangover effect.
- Trippy Shot: Your cast turns into a thrown projectile that, upon landing where you picked, deals damage and explodes into Festive Fog.
- Trippy Flare: The effect on this is similar to Trippy Shot, but it is only available when you are using the Aspect of Hera or the Aspect of Beowulf when you have Coronacht or Aegis equipped.
- Drunken Dash: Drunken Dash puts the Hangover effect onto foes near you or who are left behind in your trail. This is one of my personal favorites because I love dash boons that do damage.
- Dionysus’ Aid: Using your call, you inflict Hangover onto the foes around you for 1.5 seconds. At a full gauge, at the Heroic rarity, you can deal 19.5 damage per second, for up to 10.5 seconds.
These boons buff Zagreus, more often than not healing him or helping to prevent a little bit of damage.
- After Party: If your life is low after a party, this boon will restore it to its specified threshold. This one is nice if you’re bad at avoiding attacks or if you’re working with a weapon you aren’t familiar with.
- Positive Outlook: Positive Outlook raises your damage resistance when you’re health is at less than 40%. This boon can work as a make-or-break one if you tend to be low on health a lot, as, when paired with After Party, it can keep you going for just a little bit longer.
- Premium Vintage: You gain life when picking up nectar. This boon also gives you one nectar when you take it, so if you’re grinding for nectar, this is a must-have.
- Strong Drink: Using a fountain restores all of your health. This is one of the more useless boons offered by Dionysus unless you’re running really low on health in the Temple of Styx and are either out of death defiances or don’t want to use any.
In order to have these boons offered to you, you have to have taken at least one of Dionysus’ Damage Dealing boons. Just taking a Buffer will not lend you the ability to have one of these.
- Numbing Sensation: Foes afflicted with the Hangover effect move slower.
- Peer Pressure: Foes can afflict those around them with the Hangover effect every four seconds. Personally, I never take this boon solely because I dash around so much while I’m fighting, so if I have Drunken Dash, this boon does very little.
- High Tolerance: While standing in Festive Fog, you take less damage. This Dependee poon is one of the best boons to take alongside the Legendary one, considering that with Black Out, you’ll be throwing down your Festive Fog a lot.
Legendary – Black Out
Dionysus’ legendary boon requires that Zagreus have a few specific boons first, as its actual ability is dependent on two other effects: Festive Fog and the Hangover Status effect.
The Black Out boon requires that you have at least one of the Damage Dealers and that you have Trippy Shot or Trippy Flare. Once you have those and you’ve snagged this boon, any enemy you have the Hangover status effect on will take 60% more bonus damage while they are in Festive Fog.
All of his Duo boons require that you have at least one boon with the other god, on top of requiring that his boons, and most of the time the other god’s boons, perform specific effects.
- Low Tolerance (Aphrodite): The Hangover effect can stack up to three times more over the Max. This duo boon is exceptionally useful when you’re fighting Theseus and Asterius.
- Curse of Nausea (Ares): Hangover deals damage faster. In my last run, where I defeated Hades in under two minutes, I took this Duo boon.
- Splitting Headache (Artemis): Enemies with the Hangover effect have a higher chance of taking critical damage.
- Calculated Risk (Athena): Ranged-attack projectiles are slower when your enemies are afflicted with Hangover.
- Ice Wine (Demeter): Festive Fog gains a freezing effect and inflicts Chill on your enemies, dealing extra blast damage when it lands.
- Exclusive Access (Poseidon): Any boons you find have a minimum rarity of epic.
- Scintillating Feast (Zeus): Festive Fog attracts lightning. Enemies standing in Festive Fog take occasional lightning damage of 60.
Drunk with Power
The best build you can make with Dionysus is by combining him with a few other Olympians. Although you should absolutely main Dionysus, combining his boons with that of other Olympian’s buffs and extra bits of damage helps to give a bit more power to each and every blow.
Each build depends on your playstyle and the weapon you’re best with, but here’s my suggestion:
Weapon: Stygius, Aspect of Zagreus (Maxed out)
This will allow you to attack and move very quickly, which will be important to get in the most hits and subsequently deal the most damage with Lightning Strike. The excess move speed will also benefit you greatly if you grab Lightning Reflexes from Zeus.
Boons from Dionysus: Drunken Dash, Trippy Shot, Black Out, Dionysus’ Aid, High Tolerance, and Scintillating Feast
Boons from Zeus: Heaven’s Vengeance, Lightning Reflexes, Lightning Strike, and Static Discharge
The most important boon to make sure you grab from Zeus is Lightning Strike. From Dionysus, you must have Trippy Shot and his Aid or Dash. From there, grab Black Out and Scintillating Feast.
I prefer Dionysus’ Aid to Zeus’ in this build as well because Dionysus’ Aid inflicts a continuous Hangover, which, paired with Trippy Shot and Black Out creates a situation in which you can deal some serious damage very, very quick.
Question: Do Hades and Dionysus Get Along?
Answer: No, not really. Hades is a stick in the mud, and, like Zagreus, Dionysus is a free spirit who would rather party and get black-out drunk rather than sit still for ten minutes. Plus, Hades consistently refers to Dionysus as a drunkard during the final fight, so it’s safe to assume the two are not super friendly.
Question: Can You Romance Dionysus?
Answer: I wish. I really do wish you could, or at the very least, that we could interact with him outside of the boons. One thing I would have loved would have been to interact with all of the gods at the party in the epilogue – it would have been so rewarding to finally see Zag and Dionysus share that bottle of nectar.
Question: Are Dionysus and Zagreus the Same Person?
Answer: In the game, no, they are not. Despite the tall tale they give to Orpheus, the two are very much separate individuals. In the mythology of real life, things get a bit fuzzier.
It tends to happen in old stories and mythologies, but surrounding the figure of Zagreus and Dionysus, there are a lot of conflicting stories and ideas.
Concerning Zagreus, we don’t know much of his real-life mythology, as a lot of information on who he was has been lost to time, unfortunately. But we do have at least one story that claims the two are the same.
The After Party (Conclusion)
When I first started playing Hades, Dionysus was immediately one of my favorite characters. He was bright and cheerful, and I looked forward to snagging his boons. Whenever I encountered a two-boon room and was forced to pick, my heart always broke a little whenever I didn’t pick Dionysus’ boon first.
In all fairness, though, he does frequently side with Theseus if I don’t have one of his boons. I do think it’s funny that his attacks are absurdly easy to miss when you’re fighting Theseus. However, I can’t claim whether or not that’s actually intentional on the part of the devs.
What I can claim, however, is that Dionysus is undoubtedly one of the favorite Olympians in the fandom and that a lot of us are hoping we’ll get to see him in Hades II so the revelry and joyous times can continue from dusk to dawn.