Shadow Fight 3 – Ultimate Gameplay Guide – 2023/2024

June Reyes
Shadow Fight 3 - loading screen

Shadow Fight 3 is a 3D action fighting game that allows you to customize your character’s gender, facial features, weapons, and armor. You also gain access to a variety of fighting styles and special moves the longer you play the game.

This game boasts fluid combat gameplay, great graphics, various customization options, and a decent storyline that’s rarely seen on fighting games made for mobile. 

Shadow Fight 3 - combat
Photo: NEKKI

In this guide, we will go over all the mechanics and features you’ll encounter in Shadow Fight 3, as well as some tips that’ll help you elevate your skills and put you on the right track when it comes to your account progression.

Shadow Fight 3: Basic Mechanics, Controls, & Features

In this section, we will tackle Shadow Fight 3’s basic mechanics, controls, and features to help you understand the game better as a whole.


Shadow Fight 3 - chapter 1 story
Photo: NEKKI

Shadow Fight 3 follows a linear storyline where your created character gets recruited by the Legion—one of the three main factions in the game that seeks to take the Shadow Sphere from the Dynasts and destroy it.

The story gets way more complicated later on, however, as you are then thrown into a series of events and plot twists that see your character betrayed, beaten, and bruised—but alas, you’re not going down without a fight.

Shadow Fight 3 - chapter 2 map
Photo: NEKKI

You can advance through the main story by clearing missions on the Map, and these missions can range from regular mob fights to boss fights where opponents can use a variety of special moves that you must learn to either counter or evade.

Tip: Focusing on clearing the story up to Chapter 4 is ideal for new players as this will unlock the Factions feature, which lets you choose your fighting style and obtain sets belonging to that particular faction.


Shadow Fight 3 - insane difficulty (highlighted)
Photo: NEKKI

As shown in the image above, most PVE fights in Shadow Fight 2 have a difficulty level that depends mainly on your level of investment in the equipment you currently have equipped: 

  • Impossible (Dark Red): It’s the highest difficulty of fights in the game, and signifies that your equipment is severely under-leveled. Enemies can kill you in a few hits and are very hard to kill in this difficulty, but winning is still technically possible.
  • Insane (Light Red): Your opponent deals more damage to you and takes less damage from you, but winning is much more of a possibility compared to if you were to fight in Impossible difficulty.
  • Hard (Orange): This difficulty signifies that your equipment may be a bit under-leveled, but not to the point where it’s easily noticeable. Winning should be likely if you have the skill level to make up for it. 
  • Normal (Yellow): You and your opponent are more or less equal in the amount of damage you can deal to each other, which can easily be an advantage to you if you’re skilled enough to capitalize.
  • Easy (Green): It’s the lowest difficulty of fights in the game. Your attacks deal way more damage to your opponent and, in turn, you are barely affected by your opponent’s attacks. You can, however, still lose if you aren’t careful enough.
Shadow Fight 3 - combat (win)
Photo: NEKKI

Shadow Fight 3’s main combat controls are highlighted in the image above and explained in the table below:

1D-PadAllows you to move your character backward or forward, as well as either roll or jump toward or away from your opponent. It is also used in combination with your Punch/Weapon Attack and Kick controls to execute various attacks.
2Ranged/Secondary WeaponAllows you to either throw ranged weapons or place traps on the battlefield depending on what type of equipment you have equipped.
3Shadow FormAllows you to enter your Shadow Form. While in this form, you can press this button along with any direction in the D-Pad to execute Shadow Moves, which are determined by the equipment you currently have equipped.
4Punch/Weapon AttackAllows you to execute mainly high/mid weapon or fist attacks, but low attacks are also possible if you hold the D-Pad (down). You can also throw your opponents if they get close enough by pressing D-Pad (left or right) + Punch/Weapon Attack.
5Kick Allows you to execute mainly low attacks, but high kicks or flying kicks are also possible if you hold the D-Pad (up).
6PauseAllows you to pause the game mid-fight and either review your controls, customize them, or end the fight prematurely by surrendering to your opponent.
Shadow Fight 3 - shadow form activated
Photo: NEKKI

Note: Punches, weapon attacks, and kicks are influenced by your fighting style, which is then determined by your current faction. Special Moves also alters your controls by letting you execute certain unique moves if you press the right button combinations.

Equipment, Perks, & Special Moves

Shadow Fight 3 - equipment sets
Photo: NEKKI

Your Equipment can be upgraded by obtaining multiple cards/copies of the same type, and are divided into four different parts:

  • Armor: Primarily determines the amount of health and defense you have in battle.
  • Helm: Primarily determines the amount of health and defense you have in battle, as well as the damage of your Shadow Moves.
  • Weapon: Primarily determines your moveset and the amount of weapon damage you deal to opponents in battle.
  • Ranged/Secondary Weapon: Primarily determines the type of ranged or secondary weapon you can use during battle and the amount of damage it deals.

Furthermore, equipment pieces are categorized into rarities—Unique, Legendary, Epic, Rare, and Common. The higher the rarity, the more Shadow Energy they take to upgrade but the more Perks they can hold.

Shadow Fight 3 - perks
Photo: NEKKI

Perks, on the other hand, can be applied to your equipment and give you a variety of special effects that allow you to either boost your status or inflict debuffs on your opponent during combat.

The higher your equipment’s rarity, the more perks you can apply to them.

Shadow Fight 3 - special moves
Photo: NEKKI

Attaching Special Moves to your equipment allows you to execute various unique attacks in combat that aren’t part of your default moveset. 

Each weapon type has its own set of Special Moves. For example, you can’t attach staff-based Special Moves on Katanas and vice versa.

Important Items & Currencies

Shadow Fight 3 - gems, keys, and shadow energy
Photo: NEKKI

There are four main items and currencies that you need to farm as early as you can in Shadow Fight 3:

  • Gems: These can be used to buy items in the Store such as Event Tickets, Booster Packs, or Gold. You can get them by clearing story or character missions, opening chests/packs, or purchasing them from the Store with real money.
  • Shadow Energy: These can be used mainly to upgrade your Weapons, Armor, and Helms. You can get them by progressing through the story, opening chests/packs, and participating in Events.
  • Keys: Allows you to open chests for equipment, Gems, Shadow Energy, and Gold. You can get them by purchasing them from the Store or by receiving them as Quest rewards.
  • Coins: Can be used to buy equipment pieces in the Store. You can get them by winning fights, opening chests/packs, or purchasing them with Gems. 

Shadow Fight 3: Seven Best Tips To Follow

To help you become stronger fast and avoid mistakes that can potentially damage your account’s progress in the long run, here are some tips that you should definitely keep in mind while playing Shadow Fight 3.

Tip #1: Prioritize Your Armor & Helm Upgrades Over Weapon Upgrades

Shadow Fight 3 - armor
Photo: NEKKI

If you’re having trouble with a particular fight in the story mode and find yourself unable to progress, remember that investing in your Armor or Helm is way better than just dumping all your Shadow Energy on your Weapon.

Ideally, your investment priority when it comes to equipment should look like this: Armor > Helm > Weapon > Ranged Weapon, as you’d be more likely to lower the difficulty of fights this way.

Shadow Fight 3 - armor upgrade
Photo: NEKKI

Also, make sure to not fixate on upgrading only Legendary weapons early on, as upgrading Epic, Rare, and even Common equipment will cost you a lot less Shadow Energy in the long run.

Tip #2: Always Complete Your Quests & Duel Daily

Shadow Fight 3 - all daily quests completed
Photo: NEKKI

Completing your Daily, Event, and Raid Quests is a must since they’re the only consistent source of keys and other resources in the game.

This is especially true if you have purchased a Shadow Pass since you won’t be able to get all the rewards featured in it without grinding out those Shadow Pass Quests. 

Shadow Fight 3 - rare chest (duel)
Photo: NEKKI

We also recommend Dueling at least four times per day, as not only do you get Chests from doing it, but also because it’s a requirement for completing your Daily Quests.

Tip #3: Always Participate In Raids

Shadow Fight 3 - guillotine special move description
Photo: NEKKI

The main reason why you’d want to start playing Raids whenever you can (especially as a new player) is that it’s the only reliable source of Special Moves in the game.

Special Moves used to be easier to get, but unfortunately, the developers have decided it would be best to lock them behind a massive timewall—dooming all new players to long grinds if they want to get all the special moves.

Shadow Fight 3 - perk upgrade
Photo: NEKKI

On a related note, you can also farm the materials required to upgrade your Perks by clearing Raids, so try to clear as many as you can, especially if you’re a beginner!

Tip #4: Refer To Marathon Tasks For Guidance

Shadow Fight 3 - event marathon tasks
Photo: NEKKI

If you don’t have any idea what to do besides farming Raids and clearing Story missions, feel free to use Marathon tasks as a rough day-to-day guideline.

These Marathon tasks give you tons of rewards when completed, and they’ll also incentivize you to play different game modes. Events always come with Marathon tasks, so focusing on them early on isn’t a bad idea as well. 

Tip #5: Use Your Gems & Coins Wisely

Shadow Fight 3 - store (gems & coins)
Photo: NEKKI

Your Gems are a highly valuable resource—so much so that some veteran players recommend not spending them on your first week of playing just so you’ll have an idea of where they’re better spent.

This is a wise choice, as you can easily cripple your account’s early game and even long-term progression if you waste your Gems on poor purchases. 

Here’s where you should mostly spend your Gems on:

  • Buying new Equipment pieces in the Store
  • Buying Event-related items or offers in the Store
  • Buying Coins in the Store (occasionally)
  • Opening Legendary or Epic Chests (only when necessary)

Note: If you’re a F2P player, we highly recommend that you avoid purchasing Booster Packs with Gems, as you’ll get better returns by limiting your Gem usage to the items listed above.

Shadow Fight 3 - store (equipment)
Photo: NEKKI

Conserving Coins is also important, but they’re easier to get compared to Gems so you have more leeway when it comes to purchasing items. 

Coins are best used to gain access to certain Event stages or for occasionally purchasing equipment upgrades in the Store—especially those that are tagged NEW so you can complete sets and get set completion rewards.

Tip #6: Save Your Keys & Shadow Energy

Shadow Fight 3 - shadow energy obtained
Photo: NEKKI

Your Shadow Energy is arguably the most important resource in the game, as it allows you to upgrade your equipment and increase your account’s overall power.

We highly recommend saving your Shadow Energy as much as you can. You can do this by only upgrading your equipment whenever you encounter fights with Impossible difficulty, or Insane if you’re still having trouble beating it.

Shadow Fight 3 - legendary keys obtained
Photo: NEKKI

You should also save your Keys if you’re a new player, as the equipment pieces you get from chests depend on how many chapters you’ve cleared. Doing this is optional, of course, as you can still get decent gear if you open chests early on.

In a nutshell, you should ideally only use Shadow Energy if you bump into Impossible difficulty fights and your Keys once you get to at least Chapter 4.

Tip #7: Watch Ads Regularly For Additional Rewards

While it is a universal fact that absolutely no one likes watching ads, you should still consider doing it while playing Shadow Fight 3 as this will give you additional rewards. 

You can watch ads by tapping the “BONUS CARD” button whenever they appear—as shown in the image below:

Shadow Fight 3 - bonus card button (watch ad)
Photo: NEKKI

If you really don’t feel like watching ads, there are also giveaways, promotional offers, and social media events that you should watch out for if you want free stuff. Joining the Shadow Fight’s Official Discord Server should help you keep track of these more easily!


Considering the franchise’s massive success over the years, Shadow Fight 3 can be considered one of the best fighting games to ever be released on Android. 

It does, however, detract from traditional skill-based fighting games by having a heavy focus on microtransactions, time walls, and item grind fests. Being good in combat just isn’t enough, you also have to be very consistent if you want to get better in Shadow Fight 3.

If you’d like to see more content about fighting games just like Shadow Fight 3, feel free to visit the articles we have for Shadow Fight 4 and Samurai Shodown. But if you’re feeling adventurous and up for some fighting games with a little touch of sci-fi, come see our list of the 5 Best Robot Fighting Games For Android!

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