Hades’ characters are one of the most enchanting elements in Supergiant’s underworld action RPG, with the relationships you develop throughout your runs core the key narrative. However, there are a lot of denizens of the underworld, and Mount Olympus, to meet, and even in just a couple of hours of play-time, things can get a little confusing. Keep in mind that this guide has more spoilers than Hades has repentant souls, which is to say there are plenty, so skip through the house of Hades character section, and some sections marked with spoilers, to avoid the bulk of the characters central to the narrative.
If you’ve already escaped from the deadly peril of damnation, why not try a new adventure with our picks for the best games like Hades, and the best games like Diablo, on Switch and mobile. Or, if you’re looking to take it to the undead on the streets and in the cities, take a browse through our list of the best zombie games.
Let’s take a look at each of the Hades characters, sorted into convenient lists.
Our hero, the son of Hades and Persephone, and heir to the underworld, is Zagreus. As the protagonist, you spend the most time with Zagreus on his never-ending mission to escape the depths of hell, combat deadly demons, make deals with Olympians, and argue with your father about the future of the afterlife, or the fate of your mother.
However, it’s not just an escape on Zagreus’ mind, and our leading man can romance three of his house of Hades compatriots if you complete certain milestones. Further down the page, you can find more details on Megaera, Thanatos, and Dusa, the three romanceable characters who also call the underworld home.
Keepsake: Sigil of the Dead – turns your call ability into Hades’ aid, giving your a brief period of invincibility
The big bad, and big dad, behind the underworld, Hades is the god of the dead, and Zagreus’ father. He’s also the final boss of each run, serving as the ultimate test before Zag escapes to find the surface world. Hades and Zagreus’ relationship is one of the core themes throughout the whole game, and before the credits roll, the relationship changes in a way that can’t be undone, for better or for worse.
Keepsake: Black Shawl – boosts damage dealt taken by undamaged enemies
Nyx, the personification of the night, is Zagreus’ informal protector in Hades, and has been since his mother, Persephone, left many years before. Her role is to quietly assist Zagreus in his attempt to escape his father’s domain, having convinced the Olympian gods to lend their might to Zag, as well as allowing him the power of the mirror of the night, which in turn enables our protagonist to upgrade his abilities.
As well as caring for Zagreus, Nyx is the mother of multiple main characters, including Charon, Thanatos, Hypnos, and the fates. These relationships, alongside her distant approach to communicating with her own parent, Chaos, means that Nyx is one of the most connected characters in the underworld, with a lot of the plot-dynamic revolving around her relationship with her children – especially Hypnos, she has no time for Hypnos.
Keepsake: Myrmidon Bracer -reduces damage taken from the front, while slightly increasing damage taken from behind
Companion: Antos – summons Achilles and Patroclus to aid you in battle
If Hades has a hype-man, it’s Achilles. Spurring Zagreus on through his battles, having trained our hero since he was a young lad, Achilles is one of the supporting cast that lives up to his name. Much of Achilles’ story is shrouded in mystery, but it becomes clearer on meeting Patroclus in Elysium, where you learn about the pair’s entwined past.
Keepsake: Broken Spearpoint – become invulnerable for a short period after taking damage
Patroclus is Achilles’ long-term partner in war and in life, but the two are apart when you first meet him, with the spearman taking his refuge in Elysium. This works in Zag’s favour though, as he offers out a number of consumables that boost your powers for a few levels, often including the location’s boss monsters. Even better still, when the two eventually reunite, Patroclus will still pop down to Elysium to help you out in a jam.
Keepsake: Lucky Tooth – revives you once during a run
Companion: Rib – summons Skelly to distract opponents while you deal damage to them
Skelly is, for lack of a better description, the test dummy for Zag’s arsenal of weaponry. Outside of that, there’s not all too much to say about Skelly, though it’s worth peppering him with some attacks just to hear his witty comebacks, which are apparently a bit too much for the rest of the house of Hades residents.
Keepsake: Evergreen Acorn – take no damage from the initial hits in a boss battle
Part tree, part nymph, part god, part human, Eurydice is the jilted wife of Orpheus, sanctioned to the depths of Asphodel for her husband’s failure to not look back. However, her unfortunate situation in hell is something of a gift to Zagreus, as she offers out special cuisine that powers up boons for future fights. There’s a way to reunite the husband and wife duo, but you have to get both firmly on-side with a few gifts and conversations first.
Keepsake: Distant Memory – take less damage from distant enemies
The sad sack singer-songwriter of damnation, Orpheus is Eurdice’s distant husband and Hades’ personal jukebox. Unfortunately, his heartbreak is so cumbersome that since his arrival in the halls of the dead, he hasn’t been able to sing or play as finely as he once had, but a few kind words, and gifts, from Zagreus can change this.
Sisyphus (and Bouldy)
Keepsake: Shattered Shackle – boosts attack, special, and cast damage when you are carrying no boons
Companion: Shady – deal 1000 damage in an area before dropping a wealth of gold, health, and darkness
The affable Sisyphus doesn’t exactly call the house of Hades his home. He does eventually have the option to move there, deciding instead to continue to hang out with Bouldy, and continue on his path to endless torture (though it must be said, Sisyphus takes the torture a little too well).
Sisyphus is notable as not only does he hold a sort of side mission to free him from his shackles, but he also offers the players either gemstones, darkness, or a health boost during the eleven levels, if you’re lucky enough to find him. You’ll know when there’s the option to visit Sisyphus as a question mark appears above his chamber in Tartarus.
Keepsake: Pom Blossom – gain +1 levels on a random boon every few dungeons
Ok, remember when we said there would be spoilers? The heavy ones are coming up, so skip ahead now if you don’t want to ruin anything for yourself. Ready? Ok, good. Persephone is key to the narrative in Hades in that she’s the reason for Zag trying to escape, as thanks to Nyx and some jumbled words from his father, he learns that she’s alive and out on the surface world.
However, if you manage to defeat Hades, you eventually meet Persephone, and once you visit her enough times, she agrees to take the trip back to Hades. Within a few more runs, Hades and Persephone pick up where they left off, with Zag’s old man seemingly as content as he’s ever been sitting on the throne of the underworld.
Keepsake: Old Spiked Collar – begin your run with higher health
Besides being a good boy, a very good boy, Cerberus is the three-headed dog that guards the gates of hell. Despite this, as far as Zagreus is concerned, Cerberus is a big old softy, and your big dog will happily step aside for a bag full of treats, which just so happens to be at the end of the very last dungeon in every playthrough.
As well as being one of the best action games in recent years, Hades is also a deceptive dating game, with three options for potential suitors. The potential partners are Mageara, one of the fury sisters blocking the exit to Tartarus, Thanatos, the personification of death, or Dusa, the housekeeping gorgon.
Keepsake: Skull Earring – increased battle damage when under 30% of full health
Companion: Battie – summon Megaera to deal 2500 damage in a AoE surrounding your closest enemy
Hades’ first boss, and the potential apple of Zagreus’ eye, is Megaera, one of the three sisters that guards the exit of Tartarus. She is the most obviously romanceable character from early on in the narrative, flirting with Zagreus in-between threats to tear him limb from limb.
However, if you keep giving Megeara gifts, and continue to interact with her before you start a fresh run, she soon softens, with her and Zag kindling a surprisingly earnest relationship. Don’t worry about not seeing the other options though, as things are rarely exclusive in the underworld, and both Megaera and the next option, Thanatos, are perfectly aware of this.
Keepsake: Pierced Butterfly – boost your damage output for each dungeon you clear without taking damage
Companion: Mort – deal 3500 in the direction in front of you following a brief delay
The hooded heartthrob of Hades is Thanatos, Zagreus’ childhood friend and readily romanceable personification of death. While things start out a little less tetchy than they do with Megaera, it’s still a long path to winning Thanatos’ heart, and youhave to decide at some point whether you’d rather stay as friends, or take things to the next level.
Thanatos is also an important character in other story arcs, especially his relationship with his mother Nyx, and his brother Hypnos. In fact, one of the purer moments in all of Hades is when you finally convince Thanatos to be a better sibling to his clumsy brother, and it adds to the game’s overarching message about positive change in seemingly inescapable situations.
Keepsake: Harpy Feather Duster – urns have a chance of containing health boosts when broken
Companion: Fidi – Dusa joins you on the field for 30 seconds, damaging and petrifying opponents
Oh, sweet gorgon head. My personal favourite romanceable character in Hades is Dusa, the humble housekeeping gorgon-head with a sweet spot for Zagreus. The relationship you develop with Dusa has a much different dynamic to both Thanatos and Magerara, with Zag having to practically convince Dusa that she is worthy of speaking too, let alone loaning her his affections.
Dusa is also the only one to turn Zagreus down, in a sense, at least. The culmination of her arc leads to a cutscene in which she kindly turns down the son of Hades due to her not wanting a romantic relationship, but instead offers Zag the love of a lifetime of friendship. For this, we love Dusa, and we always will.
Keepsake: Bone Hourglass – Well of Charon items last for more dungeons
Charon is a god of many talents. They can sell you wares between boss levels, they can sail the river Styx with ease, and they can beat Zagreus’ ass down for shoplifting in a swift battle. Not one for talking though, Charon, which shouldn’t be a surprise considering he’s the son of Nyx, who herself is not overly chatty outside of delivering important plot information and moaning about Hypnos.
Keepsake: Cosmic Egg – Go into chaos gates without sacrificing health, and improve the quality of chaos boons
One of the more enigmatic characters – and that’s saying something for this cast – throughout Hades, Chaos is the embodiment of the mysterious place from where Nyx and the titans first appeared. Their boons are some of the most powerful in the game, coming at the cost of losing an ability for a few dungeons, and you can find them by taking a trip through the Chaos portals that occasionally appear throughout your escape.
If you win enough favour from Nyx and Chaos, eventually, you can pay the house contractor to construct a bridge from the house of Hades to Chaos, allowing the pair to reunite, as well as unlocking the ability to gift ambrosia to the ancient figure.
Keepsake: Chthonic Coin Purse – start your runs with some extra gold to spend
Of all the gods to get a raw deal in Hades, Hypnos perhaps has the worst of the lot. His mother finds him annoying, his brother finds him annoying, and to be completely honest with you, I find him annoying. Still, his sub-plot offers some of Hades’ multiple meaningful moments, and while he ultimately offers little but annoying reminders of failure on the last run, it’s hard to imagine the halls of Hades without Hypnos hanging around.
Keepsake: Owl Pendant – Increased chance of rare or better Athena boons
The goddess of wisdom and the strategy of war, Athena is one of the first Olympians Zagreus meets on his journey, as well as being one of the most stoic of the bunch. Her defensive and reflective boons are some of the most popular in high-octane Zagreus builds, and her two late-game boons that offer death defiance, or in simple terms, a second life, can save a run in an instant.
Keepsake: Eternal Rose – Increased chance of rare or better Aphrodite boons
As the god of love, Aphrodite is a voracious flirt with Zagreus, often leaving Hades’ son red in the face. Her boons have a similar effect on enemies, giving them the weak status condition that increases damage taken, making it even easier for Zag to tear through the denizens of Tartarus and beyond. If you want to completely win her favour, you need to cement all three romantic relationships, at which point the love goddess opens up to you a little more.
Keepsake: Adamant Arrowhead – Increased chance of rare or better Artemis boons
Artemis is the goddess of the hunt and one of the many Olympians who offer their boons to Zag on his adventure. With her own slowly unravelling sub-plot detailing her relationship with her former hunt partner, and potentially more, Callisto, she is certainly one of the less irritating gods, and her arrow shot boons work wonders in a ranged Zagreus build.
Keepsake: Blood-Filled Vial – Increased chance of rare or better Ares boons
Ares is the god of war, not the art of war like Athena, but the bloody, violent, battling part of war that fills the pantheons of greek mythology. Unsurprisingly then, Ares’ boons are all connected to dealing massive damage, either inflicting the doom status that deals a second load of damage for each hit, or creating blade rifts that slices HP off any opponent who steps into it.
Keepsake: Overflowing Cup – Increased chance of rare or better Dionysis boons
We love a god of something random, and Dionysus takes the cake, or should we say keg, as the god of wine. With boons that offer the unique hangover effect, a stacking self-damaging status, and a cheeky demeanour that could lead you to believe Dionysus might be one of the romanceable characters – he’s not, unfortunately – this Olympian is certainly one of the charismatic of the bunch.
Keepsake: Lambent Plume – Increase movement speed and dodge chance for each quickly cleared dungeon
As in almost all other imaginings of Greek mythology, Hermes is equal parts helpful, and annoying. His boons offer quicker movement, or quicker cooldowns, which are incredibly useful, but they all come at the cost of a conversation with the youthful god, who speeds through sentences as quickly as you’d imagine.
Keepsake: Frostbitten Horn – Increased chance of rare or better Demeter boons
If you skipped the spoilers on Persephone earlier, it’s time to jump forward again. Demeter is the goddess of seasons, primarily, but also has overarching powers related to the cycle of life and death. Her boons inflict chill, a stacking status effect that slows enemy movement, and she offers a number of beam attacks that stack quickly for potent damage.
She’s also Persephone’s mother, consumed by grief for her missing daughter and seemingly unaware of Zeus’ original kidnap plot. Despite the tricky beginnings, you eventually find a way to put the pieces together in a way that suits everyone, and Demeter embraces you as her grandson.
Keepsake: Conch Shell – Increased chance of rare or better Poseidon boons
Poseidon, or uncle Poseidon as he is the Zagreus, is the god of the seas, with appropriate boons that create knockback waves, inflict the ruptured status effect that damages enemies while they move, or offer bounties of the sea. To get the aquatic overlord entirely on side, you need to catch all 18 in-game fish, so keep an eye open for glimmer spots in the water (or lava).
Keepsake: Thunder Signet – Increased chance of rare or better Zeus boons
The god of gods, the lord of the lightning, and in the context of Hades, the worst brother across all mythologies – and that’s a high bar – Zeus is one of the many boon-offering gods assisting Zagreus in his escape, with a chain-lightening effect that pulverises groups of enemies, and the jolted status effect that makes opponents deal damage to themselves.
While Zeus appears as a kind uncle-type figure early in the game, what you learn about Hades’ fate sheds a little more light on the god’s less loving side, and it’s his guilt over Hades’ eternal spell in the underworld that is the catalyst for much of the narrative.
The first of Megaera’s fury sisters you face after beating your would-be girlfriend in a few battles, Alecto is similarly not out to get Zagreus on a personal level, but is stuck defending the escape from their shared domain. Even still, she packs as good a punch as her sisters, keeping Zag on his toes in their many battles.
Despite appearing as a one-note alternative to Megara after you’ve bested her a few times, Tisiphone also has some of the most powerful growth in Hades, despite its subtlety. Zagreus adds one extra word to her vocabulary besides ‘murder’, that being Zag’s name, and even though she draws the line there, it’s certainly an improvement.
The Hydra is my personal favourite boss battle in Hades, with a good bit of differentiation to the standard battle following your first escape creating an added challenge. Whichever of the Hydra variations you end up battling on your runs through Asphodel, none of them are all too chatty, but Zagreus’ ends up forging a sort of relationship with the beast anyway – classic Zagreus.
We don’t like Theseus. He’s part of the final boss duo before leaving Elysium, and the former king of Athens, now working together with Asterius, the minotaur he famously slew, to stop Zag’s escape. Almost all of the other characters in Hades have a redeemable factor, Hypnos is sincere, Demeter is determined, but Theseus? Theseus is a loser. He doesn’t give you anything but sass, and in return, you show him the sharp end.
Asterius, unlike Theseus, is actually pretty cool. Following the first few confrontations with the minotaur, both as a mini-boss and as part of the Elysium big boss duo, a mutual respect develops between Asterius and Zagreus, leading to a sort of kinship that is not at all applied to Theseus. I’ll say it again, Theseus is a loser.
There you have it, our detailed guide to the entire cast of Hades characters. If you’re struggling to find your next dance with the devil, why not check out our Diablo Immortal review, and see what we made of the mobile debut from the devilish series.