Because chests usually don’t advertise the item inside them, it is important to consider when to open what kind of chest. This guide is an overview of the different kinds of chests in Risk of Rain 2, and the order it is generally best to open those chests in.
Types of Chests
This section is an overview of the chests in the current (pre-June Update) alpha of the game. If you are confident you fully understand each and every type of chest, feel free to skip to the next section.
Chest – Small Chest
The basic variety of chest in the game. Requires a relatively small amount of money to open. The Small Chest can drop a common, uncommon, or rare item. Most often it will drop a common, and occasionally an uncommon; it is quite unlikely for any one Small Chest to drop a rare item, but the possibility exists.
The Large Chest is a larger version of the Small Chest, and costs twice as much. in exchange for the extra money, this chest will never drop a common item: Large Chests will only ever contain an uncommon or rare item. The chance for these to drop Rare items is significant.
These huge golden coffers often cost more than ten times that of a small chest, but the reward is equally as large: a guaranteed Rare item. These chests, in the current build, only spawn in the ‘fourth’ area. There will always be at least one in a small cave on the ‘bottom floor’. Make sure you know where that cave is; you’ll probably want to open that chest every time you reach the fourth area!
Security Terminals are tall chests with three potential items. Each option is of the same rarity, and they all cost the same amount. Once you purchase one item from a Terminal, the other two lock and become impossible to purchase.
Equipment Barrels are tiny triangular prisms that cost the same amount as a Small Chest, but contain only Usable Equipment.
Cloaked Chests and Rusted Lockboxes
These two chests work similarly. The Cloaked Chest is a randomly spawning chest that is free to open, but is almost totally invisible. Because of their cloaked nature, they are difficult to find. They seem to have the same item pool as a Small Chest, though that is unconfirmed.
A Rusted Lockbox is a tiny chest that is difficult to see and only spawns when at least one player has a Rusted Key in their inventory. They are free to open, and their item pool scales based on the number of Rusted Keys in the players’ inventories.
Item Printers are large boxes that, when activated, produce a set item (displayed above the printer and in its name) in exchange for a random item of the same rarity in the player’s inventory. For example, a Soldiers Syringe 3D Printer might take a Rusted Key (Common) from the player’s inventory to turn it into a Soldiers Syringe, but it would never take a Happiest Mask (Rare). An Item Printer can appear for any Common, Uncommon, or Rare item, and the Printer will have a slightly different name based on the rarity of the item it will print.
General Chest Opening Order
Understanding the nuances of each type of chest leads players towards the following chest order:
- Security Terminal (Item You Know You Want)
- Legendary Chest
- Large Chest
- Small Chest
- Security Terminal (“?” / Random Item)
- Security Terminal (Item You Don’t Really Want)
It may seem surprising that Security Terminal comes before even the Legendary Chest, but the ability to choose an item you know will be effective is better than a random Rare item. While there are no actively bad Rare items, some tend to be less useful than others. A Soldiers Syringe isn’t better than a Happiest Mask, but a guaranteed Soldiers Syringe is better than a chance at a Happiest Mask.
Of course, this comes at the caveat that the Security Terminal actually has an item you want. Any Rare item is (usually) better than another Bundle of Fireworks or Cautious Slug.
Another thing to note is that a Small Chest is better than a Security Terminal with items you don’t necessarily want of either Common or Uncommon rarity. A Small Chest has a chance to drop an item of any rarity, including a Rare item. Most rare items are better than Uncommon and Common items, so it is, generally, better at a chance for a Rare item than any unwanted or unknown common or Uncommon items.
On the Other Chests
The Cloaked Chest and Hidden Lockbox
The two hidden chests, being both difficult to find and free, have no set place on the Opening Order. If you find one, go ahead and open it! There are no downsides to opening the chests. The catch is that looking for either of these can take more time than they are worth. Remember, moving on to a new level gives more chances at rare chests and good Item Printers immediately. Leaving a few items behind, even a free item, can be worth it, in both the long and short term. If you have a knack for finding these chests (or a Radar Scanner), it will be more “worth it”, but you should still take into consideration the time you’re using to find them, and if that time could be better spent moving onto the next level.
The Timed Security Chest
The Timed Security Chest is rarely opened, but good.. If you can reach it in the time limit, open it; the use item inside is exceptional, so it is worthwhile to attempt to reach it. However, reaching the chest in the time limit is difficult enough that unless you (and your co-op partners) are specifically attempting to reach the chest in time, it is unlikely that you will.
Equipment Barrels are also fairly situational. Because they only drop Equipment items, and players can only have one use item at a time (or two, if they are playing MUL-T), it is often the case that spending the money to open a barrel will yield a worse use item than you already have. The best time to open a barrel is when you have no use item, a use item you don’t like, or you have a specific use item in mind and cash to spare. Otherwise opening an Equipment Barrel will likely be a waste of money.
Should I Use That Item Printer
The question of “Is Using This Item Printer Worth It?” tends to be less ‘solid’ than a yes or a no. It will often be useful to stack up on a particular item but on the other hand, the printer could recycle your most useful item(s) as well.
Some things to consider before activating a printer include:
- What would be the worst item(s) to lose
- What item (of the same rarity) has the highest stack (ie: it is most likely to be used)
- How Useful would the new item be compared to both of the previous items
- How many more copies of the new item would be most useful in my current situation AND in the future.
For some items, most notably Soldiers Syringe, turning other items of the same rarity into it will be a no-brainer. Extra Attack Speed is always amazing, even when compared to useful items like the Crowbar or Tougher Times. Of course, restraint is paramount when using an Item Printer. It can be tempting to continue printing items, especially when previous prints took your least favorite items; however, it is important to re-evaluate the usefulness of the printer as you use it. If you find yourself in a situation where you’ve run out of less useful items, it is likely time to move on from your printer. On the flip-side, if the printer took every good item you had, churning the remaining less useful items through the printer will often be a good idea.
As a last note, an Item Printer can be used as a primitive trading system. If you find yourself with a large excess of items compared to other players, consider donating a few to them through an item printer. Remember to consider the character they are playing before doing so: giving Engineer Bustling Fungus is always good, but they might not appreciate a handful of Backup Magazines.
Breaking Chest Order
All rules are made to be broken, and this guide’s chest order is no exception. The most obvious situation in which you shouldn’t follow Chest Order is when your money is limited. If you can’t afford a Legendary Chest, and you won’t be able to grind for more money, (for example, if the Teleporter Event is over) just open what you can and move on.
If you are playing Engineer and you want more Bustling Fungi, you may want to open more Small Chests than Large Chests. In general, if you are looking for an item of a specific rarity, it is beneficial to forego the normal chest order and open the chests that give you the best chance to purchase that item.
If you are playing with other people, and you notice an item in a Security Terminal they would want, it may be advantageous to your group if you purchase it for them rather than spend your money on your items. Similarly, leaving larger chests for the weakest player can help increase their power and bring them back in line with the rest of the group. Generally speaking, when playing online the chest order should considered secondary to the power of the group as a whole.