Lethal Company Nutcracker: How to Survive & Deal with Them

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Lethal Company’s The Frosty Update (or Version 45) introduces a handful of chaotic elements into the already chaotic game. One of the biggest additions is the game’s twisted take on the iconic Nutcracker.

In this guide, I’ll tell you everything you need to know about the newly added Nutcracker enemy. Use this guide as a reference for when you first encounter them, observing their movements, and what to do to survive an encounter with them. The new entity also brings with it the new double-barrel shotgun. A weapon that has the potential of turning the horror/comedy game into your run-of-the-mill first-person shooter.

What is the Nutcracker in Lethal Company?

From what we know, Nutcrackers are considered entities in Lethal Company. They take the form of toy red-coat soldiers that are closely associated with Christmas traditions. They patrol the corridors of planets that have the mansion tileset and can occasionally be seen on Titan. These entities wield a double-barrel shotgun capable of blasting employees with little or no effort.

Nutcrackers have a distinct footstep noise that separates them from other mansion entities like the Jester. When they stand still, a tireless eye surveys the surrounding area for any potential targets. Otherwise, they will not notice the presence of anything or anyone around them. When aggroed, the tin soldier will move aggressively forward producing mechanical rusting noises to the beat of marching drums. (I assume the drums come from the Nutcracker itself.)

If you’re lucky, you can stand a few feet away from its designated patrol path and sneak past it to avoid an encounter.

According to employee Sigurd:


The guardians of the house.

They watch with one tireless eye, which only senses movement; it remembers the last creature it noticed whether they are moving or not.”

How to survive a Nutcracker encounter

If an unfortunate employee enters a Nutcracker’s field of view while it is in scan mode, it will chase the offending employee until they are dead. The Nutcracker will shoot twice with its double-barrel shotgun before taking a few seconds to reload another set of shells.

It is generally good advice to stay behind cover when the shooting starts. Cover mostly comes in the form of wall corners and half walls. Anything less than that and you’ll get hurt at the very least. The shotgun is inconsistent to a degree but that’s no reason for you to tempt fate. Once the Nutcracker starts reloading its shotgun, that’s when you know you should GTFO or stand your ground. The shotgun has a surprising amount of range to it. It can damage you several meters away and will outright kill you if caught in the open.

Note: The Nutcracker’s attack cone considers things like high ground and distance. If you’re on the second floor of the mansion, the Nutcracker is capable of killing you even if it’s on the stairs going up.

Can you kill a Nutcracker?

It is possible to kill the Nutcracker. It takes around 5-6 swings with a melee weapon to properly down one of these soldiers. The best time to attack a Nutcracker is when it is reloading its shotgun. During that time, you can get in a couple of good whacks in before retreating to cover. I don’t advise taking it on after shooting one blast. You might get lucky a few times but it’s better to just wait for the reload.

You’ll know that you’ve killed the Nutcracker if it tips over and the eye goes splat. The lifeless remains will not dissolve. At least not immediately from my experience. Once you’ve killed the Nutcracker, you are free to take the shotgun away to sell or for your personal use.

How to take the Nutcracker’s shotgun in Lethal Company

There are two ways to take the shotgun away from a Nutcracker. The first method, as I’ve stated earlier, is to kill the tin soldier and take the shotgun. The second method is a little more daring.

It involves waiting for the Nutcracker to go to you while it’s in patrol mode. If you’re quick enough, you can ‘yoink’ the shotgun from its grasp with a quick motion. This will anger the Nutcracker and cause it to chase you to reclaim its gun. The good news is that you can use up one of your shells to take it down before it gets close.

Note: From what I can gather, the Nutcracker’s melee is as strong as its ranged attack. You don’t want to get hit by its kicks and punches.

Oddly enough, the gun has a safety on it. By pressing the ‘Q’ key on your keyboard, you can engage the safety and carry the gun around without fear of it misfiring. In fairness, the shotgun only comes with two shells so make every shot count if you want to get the best value out of it.

But that’s not the only oddity with the new weapon. The shotgun reloads when you press the ‘E’ key. This is strange since we’ve all been conditioned to press ‘R’ to reload in any first-person shooter. I don’t know the logic behind it considering the game frequently makes use of the ‘E’ key to interact with the world. A lot more compared to your typical COD game.

So what can you kill with the shotgun? The answer is almost every enemy in the game that can be killed using a melee weapon. In this case, I’m talking about snare fleas, thumpers, loot bugs, and bunker spiders. According to the community, the only killable enemies in the game that aren’t damaged by shotguns are brakens and eyeless dogs.

Tip: It takes one clean shot at close range to kill a Nutcracker with the shotgun. That should tell you volumes about how powerful the weapon is. But the truth is, the number of shots it takes varies between monsters. The bunker spider requires more shots than expected before curling up and dying.

And that’s everything I’ve got for this Nutcracker guide for Lethal Company. We’re still in the early days of the update and we’re still in the process of figuring stuff out. Much of it is finding a new cheese strat that replaces the rail strat. (RIP rail strat.) In any case, I’ll have more guides on version 45 stuff out soon. In the meantime, you can check out my other guides like the one about coil-heads.