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High Chaos is when Dishonored is at it’s best mechanically.

I just beat the game again for like the third or fourth time, and honestly high chaos is where the game really shines. You have so many gadgets and abilities that you're likely to never use when playing pacifist, ghost or even just run of the mill low chaos runs, and the sheer variety of ways you can eliminate your enemies is mind boggling.

Admittedly, I did pretty much stick to one particular power the entire game, because Devouring Swarm is laughably overpowered. With the preorder runes White Rat Friend and Gutter Feast (which are included in the definitive edition), you've already got the start of a potent combo, but you can save just before the first mission on clavering boulevard and repeatedly reload it until the bone charm at the end of the bridge is Albinos which drastically increases the number of white rats spawned. Combine this with Devouring Swarm 2, which you can get before that same mission is even over, and you can basically spam devouring swarm while eating all the white rats that spawn to fully regenerate your mana, and this will easily kill any enemy except a few special enemies late in the game, and of course weepers.

However, for your garden variety guards, Devouring Swarm is overpowered in more ways than one. If you cast devouring swarm while unseen you can kill without being detected or put at risk at all, and Swarm 2 can easily kill two or even three guards at once.

The other interesting trait of the swarm is that if you cast it on a guard in an open area, other guards will come running to try to help them or try to shoot the rats. This can often result in multiple guards running in and suiciding themselves into the rats, or if the guard density is particularly high, they all ball up together trying to fight off the rats, which makes it really easy to take them all out at once with a grenade or with Bend Time + a Springrazor

Speaking of Bend Time, holy shit. I never even got Bend Time 2 because it costs 8 runes, but Bend 1 is so broken I didn't need it. It gives you so much time, and makes you undetectable as well for the duration if you're sneaking (for the most part) so you can combine bend time and blink to traverse heavily patrolled areas quickly and easily without being spotted, I used this trick a number of times to reach areas above tallboys to get in an aerial assassination before they could detect me.

On top of this you can do stupid things like round up a huge pack of enemies and aggroing them, clump them up together and bend time, then slap down a springrazor and take them all out at once, or throw a body off a cliff down towards a group of guards and stick it with a sticky grenade as it's falling for a nice surprise.

There are just so many different strategies and techniques you can employ when you don't care about your body count, honestly I feel like the ghost and pacifist playstyles completely lock you out of playing with some of the coolest powers and gadgets in the game and it just serves to make the gameplay less interesting overall.

The sheer psychopathic freedom to use every assassination tool at my disposal to end every life innocent or guilty in whatever manner I felt like at the time kept the game fun and spontaneous, and whenever I'm not on that pure chaos path it just feels like I'm methodically speedrunning to the end avoiding all the cool shit I could be doing.

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