Helldivers 2 CEO becomes a blue beam denialist as mystery snipers allegedly take potshots at the playerbase: 'Blue beams aren't real, they can't hurt you'

An alien expert from Ancient Aliens holds a small Illuminate sniper in his hands from Helldivers 1.
(Image credit: Ancient Aliens (Prometheus Entertainment) / Arrowhead Games)

If I had a penny for every time Helldivers 2 players allegedly ran into a new enemy type, only for Arrowhead Studios' CEO to deny their existence entirely, I'd have two pennies. Which isn't a lot, but it's weird that it's happened twice. 

This time, the evidence is a lot thinner and less substantial—but first, some context is in order. Helldivers 2 is 'missing' a faction from the original game, something you can infer from how there's an entire southern slice of the Galactic Map without hostile forces in it.

The Illuminate from Helldivers 1 were a highly-sophisticated, Protoss-like faction with snipers, who would ruin OG Helldivers' day by hunting them from beyond its isometric camera with blue beams. Said lasers are the cause of this current conspiracy theory—here's a Reddit thread detailing an account from user Dye335, who was completely isolated when he was visited by the extraterrestrial menace.

"Out of nowhere I got hit with a vibrant blue laser shot, almost resembling a sniper round, from an angle that would suggest a high angle shot," Dye335 writes, as if recounting an alien abduction. "Wearing heavy armour I got knocked down [by around 60% HP] immediately and very lightly ragdolled just maybe a foot backwards."n

They then go on to say that there was no sign of their assailant on their radar, since every blip was behind cover. They maintain that the sniper "must’ve teleported out immediately after the shot." That wouldn't be noteworthy on its own—people lie on the internet for fun, sometimes—but a deluge of video 'evidence' has also been making the rounds.

I CAUGHT VIDEO OF BLUE LASERS!!! from r/Helldivers
Blue Laser Sighting!! The Rumors May Be True! from r/Helldivers
Blue beam caught clear as day! from r/Helldivers

What sets this apart from the flying Terminid sightings—which featured fully-animated, sound-designed enemies swooping in on unlucky Helldivers—is that laser weapons typically turn blue when ricocheting off armour. I'll admit, however, that the more of these I see, the more I'm starting to believe. Arrowhead Games CEO Johan Pilestedt has even chimed in on Twitter: "Blue beams aren't real, [they] can't hurt you."

(Image credit: @Pilestedt on Twitter/X.)

Personally, I think Arrowhead Games is leaning into the fog of mystery surrounding its game for sick, sadistic kicks—it's clearly a studio that's happy to hide hyper-rare enemy types in certain missions, but I'd wager it's just as likely to stir the pot and let players hallucinate hidden enemies all on their own.

Who knows. Maybe there is a teeny-tiny chance of a blue potshot knocking our brave soldiers on their butts—and I'd bet good super credits that the Illuminate will be coming, eventually. Now if you'll excuse me, I've got some unread notifications from my nearest democracy officer to check out.

Harvey Randall
Staff Writer

Harvey's history with games started when he first begged his parents for a World of Warcraft subscription aged 12, though he's since been cursed with Final Fantasy 14-brain and a huge crush on G'raha Tia. He made his start as a freelancer, writing for websites like Techradar, The Escapist, Dicebreaker, The Gamer, Into the Spine—and of course, PC Gamer. He'll sink his teeth into anything that looks interesting, though he has a soft spot for RPGs, soulslikes, roguelikes, deckbuilders, MMOs, and weird indie titles. He also plays a shelf load of TTRPGs in his offline time. Don't ask him what his favourite system is, he has too many.