Arm Thyself - A Guide to Ground Combat
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Join Date: Dec 2007
07-17-2011, 09:25 AM
What follows are general tips players of all careers should be able to apply to make life easier on the ground.
You Are Not Alone, I am Here With Yoouu
Well not me specifically (though if you see me in game feel free to holler for help) but the point is you have an away team. Obvious, yes, yet too few recognise just how important they can be, despite their questionable AI and turning into five year olds with a new toy every time you give them a device.
Using the right officers with the right skills makes a difference, as does making sure they're well equipped, we'll get to equipment in another section. Just as important as knowing what works with bridge officers is tailoring them to your play style, look at guides, respect their wisdom but they're not gospel, make sure it works for you.
I will say this though; the computer is a better healer than you are, probably. Bad news for Medics, or is it? In solo PVE more often than not it's better to let an away team member handle the healing while you save your healing skills for group play. Look at it as a way to try new things.
Ready, Aim/Press Tab, FIRE!
Shooter mode is not only optional but can be switched in to and out of in an instant. If you're good with this FPS style of play then you'll likely do well with it, if not then stay mostly in RPG control mode. However even if you're not great in shooter mode it can still be useful if something like a thalaron mine needs zapping fast and you shouldn't struggle too much with something like that since they don't move. On a side note I find RPG controls better in PVP since a human opponent can break your target lock pretty easily but I've never been anything but average with FPS's, seriously I can't hit a thing in HALO with a rocket launcher and always end up battering the enemy with the end of it.
Bear in mind, though, that your aim doesn't need to be perfect. Having the target in your reticle will work just as locking a target in RPG mode. A good way to make sure you'll hit something is to look at the surround graphic of the reticle, if the outline bar is red your Primary attack is in range and on target and if the small dots either side are red your Secondary attack is in range and on target. In short, don't shoot 'till you see the red bit which might be either side of their eyes! Also remember you don't do more damage for a head shot or less if you're aiming at an arm or a leg. Oh and as for your Tertiary attack, these are always melee no matter what you are using so you have to be all up in their face.
Another cool thing with Shooter mode is that because you don't have to have target lock to fire you can use AOE weapons with a bit more cunning to hit more targets, so long as the target is within the AOE from where you fired it.
Is That Rock Or A Polystyrene Prop?
Who cares, get behind it! Taking cover is now more important than ever, your shields regenerate after a few seconds of not taking fire and gives you a couple of seconds to use a hypo if needed. If however there is no cover, then fall back out of weapons range (around 45m at most). A stun pistol or other means of slowing your opponent helps greatly doing this, linking nicely to carrying a variety of gear.
The expose/exploit system is still present however using it will be a little different. On weaker enemies it's not usually worth taking advantage of an expose because you can take them down with relative ease anyway, maybe if they are at full health and you have an exploit attack ready it may be worth it but not usually. However on stronger enemies taking advantage of exposes can be a huge help. For this reason you should carry at least one exploit weapon at all times and keep an eye out for exposes on harder enemies.
Crouching Sehlat, Hidden Targ
One thing often overlooked in ground combat are stances. There are two stances (not counting the default standing mode). The first of which is aim mode (default key X), this stance increases your ranged damage by 33% and reduces movement speed and really should be used in most combat situations, though if you need to move quickly hitting the run key (default key SHIFT) will cancel this stance and get you moving. The second is crouching (default key C) and confers a 50% dodge bonus reducing incoming ranged damage but also a 100% resistance penalty to melee attacks. You must also be still, moving will cancel crouching mode and dont use it when facing melee enemies, unless you like respawning. Both stances can be used at the same time so pay attention to the situation and use them as appropriate but beware federation dog, crouching before a mighty Dahar Master will get you a one way ticket to Gre'thor in many small crates!
Lights, CAMT, Action!
CAMT stands for Crew Attack My Target and is the crosshair icon on the Away Team panel when you're on the ground, you can drag this to your power tray or keybind it (default Y). This will order your entire team to attack whatever you are currently targeting and they will continue to do so until the target is defeated. This can be critical in taking down a powerful enemy fast enough to not get wiped out by it and I will be reffering to it in this guide so make sure you remember it!
Pop Quiz! What is CAMT? Just checking...
Now Just You Wait (3/4's of) a Minute!
A very underused function, and I'm guilty of this too, is the pause function. While on the ground you can pause the instance for up to 45 seconds. You can use this time to organise a co-ordinated first strike on an enemy group. Switch to RPG controls, pause then select which powers you and your bridge officers will open with and where those powers will hit. Depending on your away team set up you can use this for an strong alpha attack, set up a defensive position or apply control effects precisely.
You can also pause if things take a sudden turn for a worse and you need a moment to take stock of the situation and counter attack.
Is my Universal Translater Working?
Not sure what I'm going on about? Here I will make a quick list of abbreviations. I have explained some of them in detail but look here for ones I havn't or if you need a quick reference.
RPG: Role Playing Game. In this guide RPG mode refers to the more traditional method of controlling your character on the ground and is the default setting.
FPS: First Person Shooter. FPS or Shooter mode refers to the second control type available which is similar to shooting games in that you aim manually and fire.
DPS: Damage per Second. This refers to the damage sustained use of an attack will do.
DPI: Damage per Impact. The damage a single use of an attack will do. It is important to think of attacks with longer cooldowns in this way as they may hit hard but have low DPS.
CAMT: Crew Attack my Target. Just making sure...
HP: Hit Points. The damage you can take before being knocked out.
NPC: Non Player Character.
AOE: Area of Effect. An attack or power that has an AOE will hit all targets within that area.