Helldivers 2 is a game designed with co-operative play squarely in mind, and yet there are those who want or have to play the game on their lonesome - and with them in mind, we have our Helldivers 2 solo guide and how to play in single-player explained.

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If you’re not sure if Helldivers 2 is worth a bash, then check out our review round-up to see what the players and critics alike make of the bug-stomping romp.

To put an end to your solo misery, you may be in luck if you have friends that own Helldivers 2 on another platform, something we dive into more in our crossplay guide.

Love gaming? Listen to our podcast, One More Life!

If not, we've got some tips on how to get by in Helldivers 2 as a solo player, so you can at least get some enjoyment out of the game.

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But alas, if you are stuck on your tod, read on and perhaps put on Three Dog Night's cover of Harry Nilsson's One is the Loneliest Number in the background as you do!

Can you play Helldivers 2 solo?

A screenshot of Helldivers 2 showing a squad of 4 Helldivers shooting towards a Terminid Brood horde on a desert planet
Helldivers 2. Arrowhead Game Studios, PlayStation Studios

Yes, you can play Hellsiders 2 solo - but the game doesn’t massively encourage it.

Co-op games are typically best enjoyed with friends, and what’s more, Helldivers 2 features friendly-fire which cannot be disabled.

While this may ensue in a lot of hilarity among good chums who trust one another, random players you match with online may not be so kind.

As Arrowhead Game Studios puts it: "Friendly fire is an unfortunate certainty of war."

Conversely, it may simply be a part of griefers who get more fun out of ruining your time with the game than actually focusing on the objective at hand.

Does Helldivers 2 have a single-player campaign?

No, Helldivers 2 does not feature a single-player campaign, and is online only.

There is a larger war at play in Helldivers 2, though, which all community members contribute to 24/7 through their actions in-game.

As revealed by Helldivers 2 deputy director Sagar Beroshi in a PlayStation Access YouTube video, the studio is meddling with how the game plays akin to a Dungeon Master in tabletop role-playing games with "a suite of tools and a suite of real-life human beings, not just AI bots, that are observing the gameplay as it's happening and responding in real-time".

With all this in mind, it’s clear Helldivers 2 has always been intended to be an online-only affair with action that ebbs and flows from player and developer shenanigans alike.

How to play Helldivers 2 solo explained

To play Helldivers 2 solo, you need to start the game, go into 'Options' and then 'Matchmaking Privacy', which is set to 'Public' by default. Change it to 'Friends Only', and launch the game without inviting any friends.

It’s unclear if the difficulty will be adjusted in kind to reflect there being a smaller squad, but be prepared for an uphill struggle, as some of the bosses and objectives are brutally difficult to tackle with friends – let alone solo.

You also disable other players' voice chat by going into 'Audio' and set your voice chat to 'Disabled' so that you can completely ignore other players if you do end up playing with randoms.

Hopefully, some of your pals pick up Helldivers 2 on PC or PlayStation 5 so that you can enjoy crossplay together, but for those wanting to go it alone, we salute you!

Helldivers 2 solo tips

If you do have to play solo or choose to do so willingly, YouTuber Elbethium shares some sage wisdom on how best to go about it, as can be seen in his YouTube video embedded above.

While the video focuses on the Charger enemy type, the advice can be applied to many more situations in the game, too.

Essentially, you will need to create as much distance between yourself and the enemy as possible and pick off the low-level fodder that accompanies more powerful enemies.

You won’t be able to use any heavy weaponry, as this requires two players to operate - so you will be rinse and repeating shooting, running and so on and so forth.

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