-Updated Sorcery, Sniper, and Operative matchups
There have been many requests for a comprehensive guide to the PvP Scrapper. Most people, myself included, do not fully understand how to play this class. It is an extremely complicated specialization that must make extensive use of all its abilities, using them at the right time and in the right circumstances. This guide will help you learn the Scrapper class for PvP and help you master it. I don’t know everything about this class, so feel free to add suggestions and correction as you see them. And for those who want to disparage our poor class: Take it somewhere else. I know that Shadows have it better than us, and I have known that since December 21 2011. This thread is for learning to play the class, not suggesting improvements for it.
This guide is the product of some conversation with other players, a lot of writing and time, and a lot of WZ wins, losses, deaths, and kills. It was started in December 2012 before being posted in February 2013,.
TABLE OF CONTENTS
- Introduction: Strengths and Weaknesses
- Skill Points
- Ability and Gameplay Overview
- Basic PvP “Rotation” Muscle Memory
- Class-Specific Matchups
- Warzone Tactics
The Scrapper used to exist in an almost strictly inferior position to Shadows. Players during the 1.4-1.6 era of the game will remember that our class had a lot of problems including mobility, sustained damage, survivability, and general utility. There was no easy ways to make a big impact on WZs with this class.
All of that changed with 2.0. The class still has a steep learning curve and a high skill cap, but when played right, you can now make a serious difference in WZs. Some of the things I once said of Scrapper are still true; we can put out hard-hitting numbers, but not with just mashing a few buttons. We can stay alive longer than any other class, but not without mastery of abilities and mobility. But I can’t say that this class is underpowered anymore. We are still hard to play, but we now have a lot of rewards waiting for us at the end.
So what do we have if not any of that? We have the best darn burst in the game…if you know what are doing. And we have a shotgun. Still not sure if you should play a Scrapper in PvP? Here is a brutally honest list of some pros and cons of the class.
Extreme burst potential (Backblast will reach around 70% crit with 100%+ surge)
Cheapest single target stun in the game
Highly mobile (Tendon Blast snare, talented Sneak, Dirty Escape, etc.)
Best escape in the game (Scamper!!)
Offhealing and self-healing capabilities
Objective oriented abilities (Freighter Flyby, Sleep Dart, Flashbang, etc.)
Versatile and adaptable
Awful defensive cooldowns
Heavily dependent upon WZ positioning
No “pure” finishing ability
Loses best ability if caught while stealthed
Players who read the old version of this guide will notice that some weaknesses are gone. With the alacrity and talent changes, our resource management is now vastly improved. As long as you aren’t too crazy with your abilities (and let’s face it, the temptation is always to go nuts), you will almost always have the resources to deal with any PvP combat scenario. Also, our Huttball relevance has dramatically increased with the addition of Scamper. Overall, this class has really launched up in terms of power, and for those with the shotgun and smuggler skills, it is a very rewarding spec.
Unlike a lot of other classes, you really need to fill out your entire skill tree to be effective in WZs. Flechette Round is just too darn good of an ability to pass up, and it makes the class stand out from other DPS specs. That said, there is another hybrid option that I will talk about, but after extensive playtesting, I generally find it inferior to the pure scrapper builds. This hybrid forgoes Flechette for Slow Release Medpac, giving a big boost in survivability, but at a cost of damage. We will talk about it, but it’s not my favorite. Including this Hybrid SRM build, we are going to talk about 3 different ways to build your class.
Glass Cannon Spec: 3/36/7
- Maximizes burst potential
- Most efficient single target stun in the game
- Lowest survivability
- Limited value to team; you are basically pure damage with no defenses
- When Dirty Kick is on CD, you lose your biggest advantage
Even with 2.0, this is still my personal preference. This is an all-in damage build that sacrifices most of the survivability talents for those that improve damage output. Your ace in the hole on this tree is the excellent Dirty Escape talent in the Dirty Fighting spec. A 4s stun on a 30s CD is huge, especially because most targets will have a 2 minute CD on their escape. If you are making it your business to wreck a healer, speccing the stun gives you 1 extra stun to use that he won’t be able to trinket out of.
This spec is unusually gear dependent because of our awful survivability. Once you hit that magical expertise of around 2200 or so, you get your crit rate up to 35% buffed, and you have your surge exceeding 70-75%, this spec starts to really be scary. Until then, however, you are going to have a tough time going toe-to-toe with all those Conqueror Powertechs and Juggernauts roaming around the WZs.
Here are some notes on the talent choices.
- Flanking / Sawed Off: They aren’t great talents (much worse than their old 1.1 versions), but they buff your second best ability. Moreover, because Backblast will be pushing a 70%+ crit rate, you want to get as much damage out of that move as possible.
- Shifty Eyed: The modern stealth “metagame” favors the player who can strike first. If you lose that opener, you are almost certainly going to lose the fight. This talent gives you a head start on other stealth classes. Even if you can’t get in position for a Shoot First, you can still pop them with something to at least ensure the fight doesn’t start badly. It’s also a must-have when you are trying to attack a node with a stealther waiting in the weeds.
- Sneaky: Helps both survivability and damage in an indirect way. From a survivability perspective, Sneaky prevents early detection, and the worst possible thing that can happen to a Scrapper is getting caught out of stealth. For damage, Sneaky lets you close the distance to melee range during a fight (invaluable after Sniper/Sorc knockbacks).
- Browbeater: Some builds forgo this talent in favor of survivability. Their rationale is that Vital Shot is energy intensive and not part of most bursty rotations. I agree. These critics forgot, however, that Browbeater also buffs the awesome Flechette Round. In just a 10 second bout of combat, you are going to apply 2 FRs, and Browbeater gives you a huge 9% damage buff to both.
- Brawler’s Grit: It’s not that this is a bad talent. Even just 4% Endurance can help you survive one more hit in a fight. Unfortunately, it just isn’t as useful as Sneaky or Browbeater.
- Survivor’s Scars: Another talent that I would love to fit in. It is especially awesome with Surprise Comeback. But again, other talents low in the tree are more important.
- Surprise Comeback: BW just can’t seem to fix this god awful talent. It was better before 2.0 when damage values were lower. But now, it’s a bigger joke than 1.6 Mercenaries. The healing is negligible even in long engagements, and the newly designed Kolto Pack has eliminated any need for a HOT in your talent. Also, at 2 skill points, Comeback just eats away valuable talents. Skip this terrible skill and convince BW to redesign it.
Balanced Spec: 10/36/0
- Enhanced survivability
- Better sustained damage (longer UH stacks + Pugnacity)
- Useful offheals for team
- Loses access to 30s CD stun
- Slightly lower burst potential
There was a time when this more durable build was probably “better” than my preferred Glass Cannon version. Given the wide range of changes to both this spec and others, however, that has changed. For the most part, I think that any Scrapper should be speccing into Dirty Fighting for the 30s Kick, but if you are really hurting for survivability, then this is the spec for you. Sawbones talents make it very easy to duck around corners, toss down an Underworld Medicine/Kolto Pack on yourself, and keep in the fight. This build is particularly crazy with Scamper. You will basically never die. You also will almost always have Pugnacity up before you use Shoot First, a big boost to your sustained damage in those opening seconds.
- Exploratory Surgery: Underworld Medicine is a great heal, but speeding up its activation AND getting free Upper Hand stacks instantly gives you a lot of extra staying power on the battlefield. Before a WZ even starts, you can self-cast UM to grant UH and pop Pugnacity, all before you even start the fight.
- Healing Hand: Giant heal boost to everything, including Surprise Comeback. Longer duration on UH has great synergy with the free UH stacks granted by Exploratory Surgery as well.
- Smuggled Technology: A problem that most Scrappers encounter in offhealing is pushback. You duck behind a pillar to throw some heals down. Your opponent doesn’t have their interrupt up and you think you can get off your Underworld Medicine. But three Slashes later, you still haven’t cast the darn thing, and you are almost dead anyway. This talent solves that problem, effectively negating all pushback you would otherwise suffer.
- Scar Tissues: I actually like this ability more than I like Brawler’s Grit, but you just can’t get it to fit into your tree. Because the class is very mobile, ducking behind walls and only catching occasional hits in some WZs, the flat DR is a nice touch. Sadly, the other talents are better.
- Anatomy Lessons: Great ability that really helps out your energy management, and lets you spam Vital Shot on more targets. But if you are dipping into the Sawbones tree, my view is that you should just go all in on extra survivability, not try to add in just a touch more damage.
- Vastly improved survivability
- Dual role as DPS and healer
- Improved sustained damage
- Increased defensive capabilities
- Hugely reduced burst damage
- Weakened opener
- Worse CC
There are a lot of ways you can mix Sawbones and Scrapper, and these three are by no means exhaustive. The core of all these builds consists of a) Slow Release Medpac for survivability and team utility and b) maximizing Sucker Punch and Upper Hand procs. SRM alone changes how you play the class. To maximize this talent, you need to be throwing it on allies whenever possible, while also keeping up your own DPS; you aren’t actually a healer, so don’t over commit to it. SRM makes your kiting abilities even better, and there will be few enemies who can kill you in a 1v1 (or even 1v2) so long as you make good use of CCs and heals.
Unfortunately, the loss of Flechette Round is enormous, not to mention the Shoot First knockdown and the bonus scattergun surge. This will really hurt your damage in WZs, and you will find that you just cannot kill certain targets without help. SRM makes up for this by making yourself largely unkillable in most 1v1 contexts, which helps from a defensive standpoint. But once you go on the offense, you will absolutely notice the lack of stopping power in your moves.
Because there are so many different variations on this build, I won’t go over the different talents in the trees. The three hybrid specs above (11/30/0, 17/24/0, and 22/19/0) are good starting points to give you some idea about how the class will look.
NOTE: My gear in 2.0 is nowhere close to finished, and I’m not even quite sure what the optimal balance between stats is yet.
Unlike a few of the top DPS classes (Rage Marauders/Jugs and Pyrotechs), you need to balance your stats across the board. You have no “automatic critical hit” talents, so you can’t forego Critical Rating. You have no flat talented bonuses to damage, so you can’t ignore power. You need to rely heavily on crits, so you can’t forego surge. You are one of the squishiest classes in the game, so you can’t ignore Endurance. And of course, you can’t ignore Cunning because it is your main stat.
OUTDATED GEAR LOADOUT:
There was a point when Scoundrel PvP set bonuses were terrible and you had no choice but to use PvE mods with the +15% BB crit chance. 2.0 changed that both directly, by buffing our Medic set-bonus (bonus absorption on Shield Probe) and indirectly, by buffing classes that Evasion is good against. Today, you want to be using both the 2-piece Medic set bonus and the 2-piece Enforcer set bonus. Evasion was once not nearly as good, but with Snipers reigning over WZs everywhere, a longer duration Evasion becomes invaluable for keeping those fights favorable.
- Elite War Hero Relic of Boundless Age
Even in 2.0, this is hands down the best Relic you can get. Outrageous amounts of Power give you a gigantic pump to your damage. These are also pretty cheap relative to other EWH pieces.
34% BUFFED CRITICAL CHANCE
- As Wainamoinen emphasizes, your crit chance is going to be split between some cunning and some critical rating. He further highlights that the crit chance itself doesn’t suffer from DR, but that your crit RATING does. For me, I get to my 34.5% crit chance with a combination of 2100 cunning and ~190 crit rating.
- 34% is a bit of an arbitrary number at first glance, but when combined with your talents, it represents a symbolic milestone. You already used skill points to gain a bonus 16% crit chance to Shoot First/Backblast, so 34% gets you to a 50% chance on both of those high damage abilities. You can still pump crit up a bit higher, but you need to be careful of your Power/Surge/Crit balance. I see a lot of Ops with a 38% critical chance but they are only rocking 700 bonus damage; they don’t have the power to beef up their crit itself. To avoid outrageous stat stacking, BW designs mods so Crit and Power are never found on the same modification in our PvP gear, so to keep your crit high, you need to sacrifice raw damage.
- Anything with Accuracy is getting modded out of your gear. Replace it with the Crit/Surge/Power mods of your choice. The overwhelming majority of our DPS comes from Tech abilities, not ranged ones (Flurry of Bolts, Charged Burst, and Quick Shot). In regards to tech abilities, accuracy only lowers a targets resistance, and the only time that comes into play is against Sins/Shadows with Shroud/Resilience up. You should be Quick Shotting these guys anyway, so accuracy just doesn’t figure in.
2.0 Alacrity is awesome for Scrappers. It improves both our resource regeneration (which is always a big limiting factor for our bursty play style) and our GCD time (which directly improves burst over time). Unfortunately, Alacrity shares the same gear slot as Surge. It also occupies the same slot as Crit, but we already know what an optimal crit rating is. Surge and Alacrity, however, are in direct competition for damage.
Using the equations for Surge and Alacrity returns, I calculated the optimal DPS balance between the two. This split was calculated assuming you have 10 gear slots to divide between Surge/Alacrity (Ear, 2 Implants, 7 Enhancements). Based on the DPS analysis, you want anywhere between 240 Alacrity (4 Alacrity pieces) and 360 Alacrity (6 Alacrity pieces). This would give you a Surge range of 70%-66%.
The differences between the discrete values in this range are small. Lower Alacrity (a 4/6 split in gear) would mean slightly higher burst for PvP but slightly worse sustained damage. Higher Alacrity (a 6/4 split) means the reverse. Don’t go outside this range, i.e. a 3/7+ or 7/3+ division. Alacrity/Surge splits outside of this range have a much worse effect on DPS values, and you will notice it in gameplay. But as long as you stay within the 240-360 Alacrity range, you will be fine.
- If PvP was just a big 1v1 duel, you could get away with having 24k HP and a boatload of cunning. In a straight up duel you are going to be bursting your opponent down before they can chisel too much at your HP, and that last 2k+ HP is less valuable than 300-400 extra damage.
But PvP is NOT a 1v1. Even as a Scrapper, a class designed for the single combatant street fight, you are always going to be in more melees than duels. Against decent teams, those with healers that you are trying to drop, you will often be marked and singled out by at least 1-2 DPS; after all, they have to protect their healers. Anyone who tells you that they can kill a geared healer with 2 geared guards on him while only sporting 16k-17k HP is lying to you. Sure, you can restealth and return at full HP, but any premade is going to come back and deal with you.
Objective-based game play also factors in here. There are lots of times, especially in pugs, where you will be the last man standing on a door or a node. Especially in Voidstar, you need to stay alive as long as possible until the defender shield drops and reinforcements come. Extra damage isn’t going to help you kill 3 enemies, but extra HP will help you survive long enough for backup.
This is where more HP comes into play. The difference between 24K and 28K HP is 1-2 GCDs worth of damage. That can give you as much as 3-6 extra seconds to kite, heal yourself, get healed, finish a cooldown, etc.
Basically, HP makes up for our bad defensive cooldowns. We can’t buff Shield Probe and we can’t transform Evasion into Resilience. But we can give us raw survivability.
CUNNING, SURGE, AND POWER
- PENDING Cunning
- CUNNING AUGMENTS
Because Cunning is so important for both Crit chance and damage, you want full Cunning augments in your gear. ALL GEAR should be augmented with the +22/+30 Augment.
- 70% Surge Bonus
This is the only stat you don’t want to push to its returns, and that’s because of its relationship with Alacrity. You will get better DPS by having around 70% Surge and 240 Alacrity than you would from having 78% Surge and 0 Alacrity. This is even true in a burst scenario, especially any that last longer than 10 seconds.
- PENDING Power
Power isn’t quite as good as Cunning, but through your mods you will still be able to cram a bunch into your gear. The Power/Surge Enhancements alone will account for at least 300 or so power, with your relics and implants and earpiece giving another 300-400.
DATACRONS AND COMPANIONS
- This is more of a general note on PvP players than Scrappers, but because of our fragility and lower sustained damage outputs, it is particularly relevant to us. If you are level 50, you have NO EXCUSE to not have all the Cunning and Endurance datacrons. If you can’t get the +10 datacron then no one will be too upset with you, but you really need to have all the rest.
- As to companions, when you max affection on your DPS companions you gain a +1% bonus to Surge and Crit Chance, two stats that are critical (hehe) to your success as a Scrapper. These little things seem unimportant, but over the course of hundreds of WZs you will benefit from these small boosts.
Most people reading this guide probably know the basics of Scrapper abilities, so I am not going to talk about how you should always have 1 stack of Upper Hand at all times, how you shouldn’t use Blaster Whip if you already have 2 stacks of UH, how you shouldn’t use Flashbang against a DOTted opponent, etc. Instead, I am going to highlight some important abilities and gameplay styles that will help take your Scrapping to the next level. Some of this will absolutely be review for a lot of you, but there should be something helpful in here for everyone.
HOW TO USE SCAMPER
With the advent of ROTHC, Scamper became not only our best ability, but one of the best abilities in the entire game. Scamper makes us the most mobile class in TOR, with improved survivability, gap closing, and the ability to threaten nodes at a moment’s notice. But Scamper is also one of the most misused abilities in our arsenal, and using it badly will actually reduce your effectiveness in a WZ below what you could be doing without Scamper at all. One could write an entire article on how to properly use this ability, so I will just focus on the most important points here.
- GOOD: AIMING SCAMPER OFF LEDGES
TOR physics are rarely advantageous, but in the case of Scamper, they offer a huge benefit. If you fire a Scamper off a ledge, you will launch a lot further ahead than you would if you had just stayed on the ground. This lets you clear even larger distances with your ability, helping you to better secure objectives. Look for ledges around the center of Novare Coast in particular, as they will help you get to the side node in time.
- GOOD: SCAMPER RIGHT AFTER YOU POP DISAPPEARING ACT
Assuming you are using DA correctly (see below), Scamper lets you negate one of the biggest weaknesses of Stealth: AOE and Stealth Scan. The vast majority of decent players will drop either a Force Storm, Sweeping Blasters, Stealth Scan, or some other nasty AOE right after you use Act. Scamper lets you clear out of the area and avoid the AOE if you are quick. Even if your game lags a bit and you get caught on the edge of an AOE and break stealth, Scamper gives you that badly needed distance to get away.
- GOOD: STAGGER YOUR SCAMPER TO PRESSURE A SIDE NODE EARLY
Scamper gives us a new job in Civil War and Novare – Racing to the side node and going for the solo kill/cap. With Scamper and the speed boost, it is impossible for an opponent to capture the side node on Novare unless they are also using the roll. Even without the speed boost, Scamper alone is enough to get you to the Civil War side turret in time to stop a cap. Before Scamper, you could not race a Predation-powered Sin/Sorc to the Civil War node, and you couldn’t race any Inquisitors to Novare’s side cannon. Scamper changes that. When you Scamper, be sure to PAUSE IN BETWEEN SCAMPER ACTIVATIONS. You should let your energy recover by 10-15 before using the next Scamper, or you aren’t going to have any energy left to win the fight on the side node. If you need to pop Cool Head to recover energy, you have wasted a valuable CD by being impatient with your rolls. You might need that CD to win the 1v1 at your side node (Especially against a Sin or a PT), so don’t waste it on the journey.
- GOOD: SCAMPER TO CLOSE A GAP
With the improvement of Sorcs, Mercs, and Snipers in 2.0, gap closing has become increasingly important for close-range classes like the Scrapper. Mercs will slow you and kite you (if you get netted this step won’t apply). Snipers will roll away and snare/slow you. Sorcs will snare, slow, run, and do everything possible to keep you away. Scamper evens those odds and keeps us competitive. As a general rule, you will only Scamper in two situations. The first is if you do not have a speed debuff applied to you. Scamper becomes a really bad Sprint if you have a slow on you, so it’s not even worth it for the energy cost. If you have a Tech slow applied, you can Triage it off before using the ability. The second situation in which you will Scamper is if your Scamper evasion has not yet been used. Evasion will clear off a tech slow if it is on you, and it will mitigate your damage as you close a gap (especially important against Marksman Snipers).
- BAD: SPAMMING SCAMPER TO RUN AWAY
I see a LOT of Scrappers/Ops using Scamper as a poor man’s Phase Walk (at least, using one of Walk’s function: to escape). You should never be spamming Scamper to run away. You should never be spamming Scamper period (unless to stop a cap that you absolutely must stop), but most of all you don’t want to spam it to flee. In order to get away from most conflicts such that you can’t be followed, you need to use Scamper at least 3 times. This huge energy expenditure will leave you stranded and totally useless on the edge of the battle. In the majority of cases, it would be better to wait for the respawn than wait to exit combat (which, as we know, can take a ridiculously long time), heal back up with the PvP trauma debuff, and then return to the battlefield. Good players won’t chase you; they will just let you wallow in shame on the periphery while they focus objectives. Bad players will chase you and probably kill you. It’s a lose-lose either way.
- BAD: USING SCAMPER MULTIPLE TIMES IN A ROW
Unless you direly need to stop a node cap in progress, there is absolutely no reason for you to use Scamper 2+ times in a row. This ability is a huge energy hog if misused, and the best way to make yourself useless in a WZ is to have 0 energy when you reach the battlefield. In the overwhelming majority of cases, it is better to get to the battle a bit late with energy than it is to get there early with a 1 energy/second regeneration rate.
- BAD: USING SCAMPER TO CHASE OTHER OPS/SCOUNDRELS
As many of you have probably noticed, there exists tremendous competitive animosity between rival Scoundrels/Operatives. For a lot of reasons, whenever two of us meet on the battlefield, we become locked in bitter, prolonged, and existential combat for the remainder of a warzone. That may give us bragging rights at our desk chairs, but it doesn’t do much to help the WZ. Scamper is the next generation of Scoundrel ego-battles. If one Op/Scoundrel senses he is losing the battle, he will Scamper away and probably /laugh at you as he flees. Do not get mad. Do not fly after him. Stay calm, remember your objectives, and congratulate yourself on removing the target from the fight. This is especially true when dealing with healers, who are likely benefiting from HOTs the entire time and can Emergency Medpac for free. If you chase a rolling healer, he will still be able to heal even with 0 energy. You, however, will be totally useless for the next 30 seconds. The only exception to this is if you know that by chasing a healer you can drive him away from the main fight. Then it is worth it. But in the case where your target isn’t a total idiot, don’t play in the Scamper War.
Kolto Pack and Underworld Medicine are potent weapons in the Warzone, even if you are not a dedicated healer. The ability to heal yourself is invaluable in pitched battle, especially against less-mobile classes like Snipers. The trick when healing is knowing a) how much you want to heal and b) which heal you want to use. In general, you rarely want to use more than 1 heal at a time. Chaining two heals together is a big use of energy, and you are not very useful once you fall below our max energy regeneration. The exception to this is if you need to hold a node for reinforcements. If you are attacking, however, then don’t waste the time; respawning is a free heal! Picking your healing ability is a bit more nuanced. It entirely depends on which class you are facing and how you want to negotiate that fight. Against melee classes, you need to be using Kolto Pack because of the reduced cast time. Those .5 seconds can often be the difference between an interrupt and a resolved heal. Against ranged classes, you have more flexibility. In general, you want to make sure that the bonus healing and extra mobility is worth the loss of the UH stack. And of course, Diagnostic Scan is awesome when you are low on energy and just need to hang out and hold a node.
If you aren’t using Sabotage Charge because it needs to be used from cover, you are missing out. This is our third hardest hitter after Shoot First and Backblast, and you can easily use it in combat. Just make sure you keybind cover/SC close together so you can rapidly use this ability in the middle of battle (mine is Shift+F for Cover and Shift+G for SC).
TENDON BLAST IS BROKEN
I would argue that this is our most versatile, useful, and even powerful ability at our disposal. When talented, the root gives us a HUGE range of tactical options that are otherwise closed to us. It helps us kill healers, prevent charges, stop Huttball carriers, peel off to heal, calm down enemy DPS, and a variety of other applications. Most importantly, it goes right through a full resolve bar, so you can use it even after you combo a kick/shoot first knockdown.
THE AWFUL, TERRIBLE QUICK SHOT
This is, without a doubt, our worst damage ability. It has terrible range, and at the range where you are doing QS, you might as well just punch or shotgun your target. It has bad damage in a bad damage/attack type (energy/range). It has low damage. It costs too much energy. And on top of all that, BW removed the awesome revolver sound from the move (pre 1.5, if I remember, it made an awesome gun sound when used). The only time you will ever use this move is against a Shrouded Sin, and even then, there are exceptions.
XS FREIGHTER FLYBY IS UNDERUSED
I see a lot of Scrappers who save this move for a rainy day. This move needs to be used whenever it is off of CD. Given its AOE and damage output, it is pound for pound the hardest hitting ability in the game. With three people standing in the fire, at 6k+ damage each, you are putting out a Smasher level of damage. And that’s without a single crit!! This is invaluable for defending nodes (drop it on a Civil War turret control or a Voidstar door), awesome for guarding Huttball paths, and critical in certain 1v1s against melee opponents. Unless you know you are saving the Flyby to defend a node, you need to use this at all times.
Mobility is one of those shady concepts in TOR. Running and jumping around confers no numeric advantage in a fight, and only makes you feel like a frenzied bunny rabit on PCP. But it turns out that being mobile is actually very useful, especially as a melee class that relies on positioning for our most important out of stealth ability (Backblast). Get used to running around and through your targets, taking their flank, disrupting their camera angle, and generally causing panic. You do NOT need to jump around to do this. Jumping actually reduces move speed and just makes you look stupid. But darting around like a hornet is an excellent tactic.
SNEAK FOR SPEED
As you run around a WZ, especially from a node to another node or in between fights, you need to be using Sneak for the 50% speed boost. Right after you Sneak, immediately spam your Stealth key. You will quickly enter and exit Stealth, resetting the Sneak CD. After your first 50% speed boost ends, rinse and repeat. This is the best way to move around the map and, if you are traveling long distances, actually makes you a faster responder than a Shadow/Sage.
Just don’t forget to have Sneak ready for the stealth level increase when you arrive at your destination.
EVASION –> DISAPPEARING ACT COMBO
Never use DA without first cleansing DOTs. I bind Evasion right next to my DA (Ctrl+Z and Ctrl+X respectively) so I can consistently get out of a fight without risking my stealth being popped. If Evasion is down, use Triage instead. It won’t remove all DOTs, but it might remove the ones that are currently affecting you.
DO NOT USE DISAPPEARING ACT AS A CRUTCH
If you find yourself needing Disappearing Act to a) survive a fight or b) end a fight, then you are not playing your Scrapper correctly. You have more than enough damage to win a fight without this ability, and in many cases you have more than enough mobility to get out of one if needed. You need to be saving DA for one of a few situations.
- GOOD: KILLING A SOLO GUARD
If you can use DA to guarantee a solo guard on an otherwise undefended node, then absolutely go for it.
- GOOD: SURVIVING TO HOLD A NODE
If you are one of the last 2 defenders standing on a Voidstar door, your goal is not to go down fighting. Your goal is to disappear, hide in the corner, and disrupt the bomb planters until the respawn.
- GOOD: KILLING A HEALER
Sometimes you need DA to take down a particularly problematic healer. This happens when your target is guarded, protected by taunts, and/or being healed by yet another healer. DA can give you the last boost you need to take down your target. This is especially useful in respawn-based maps like Novare, where removing a healer from the picture can quickly tip the tides of battle and lead to a node capture.
- GOOD: KILLING A HUTTBALL CARRIER
An offensive DA to take down a HB carrier is perfectly acceptable. The knockdown barely fills resolve, you get a ton of damage, and you apply your FR DOT.
There are also a lot of bad ways to use DA. Unfortunately, I see these a lot more on both sides of the WZ than I do the good DA uses. Please avoid doing the following:
- BAD: EPEEN AND EGO KILLS
Just because someone is beating you in a fight does not mean you need to use your best CD to try and kill him. Is it really worth it? Would that CD be more useful in 45 seconds when you need to hold a node? Or kill the ball carrier? Or solo a side guard? This happens ALL THE TIME in Scrapper vs. Op fights. You don’t get a prize for killing your rival. You don’t get anything, except a lot of grayed out abilities that would be more useful at other times.
- BAD: ESCAPING A STUPID FIGHT
If you dive a healer and suddenly find yourself focused by his 3 premade buddies, perhaps you shouldn’t dive that healer alone. Don’t use DA to correct for stupid mistakes. Just don’t make stupid mistakes period.
FLASHBANG OFFENSIVELY AND DEFENSIVELY
Flashbang (I think it’s called “Flash Grenade” for Scrappers, but Flashbang sounds better and you still know what I mean) is the second best mezz in the game after Intimidating Roar. It has a big AOE, lasts 8 seconds, has a short CD, has no resource cost, affects a lot of targets, and has a good range. Unfortunately, I see most players using it purely for defensive reasons. For example, if you are suddenly attacked by 2-3 enemies, you can FB and run away while they sit their holding their migraines. That’s a pretty common use of the move, but it’s also a bit limiting.
Flashbang can also be used offensively. You should always use it to mezz out a healer if you are trying to kill his DPS protector. Or the other way around. Be creative with the ability. It has a relatively short CD so you should be using it almost all the time.
SLEEP DART AGAINST HEALERS AND TANKS
So you come across a node, either solo or with a partner, and find a healer sitting there guarded by a Tank. As in, the tank literally has Guard up on the healer. Who do you Sleep Dart? Before 2.0, you had to Dart the healer and work on the Tank, otherwise the redirected Guard damage would wake up the big guy. But nowadays, redirected damage from Guard won’t cause a mezz to crack. That gives you the choice of who to dart and who to kill.
As a general rule, you almost always want to dart the TANK and then try and kill the HEALER. Realistically, you aren’t going to kill either target in 8 seconds, especially if they have gear and any clue as to how to play. Both of them are going to take roughly the same amount of damage; the healer will heal through some of your burst and the tank will us CDs to mitigate it. But if you target the healer first, you will at least be at full health when the tank wakes up. That means you will at least have more resources (HP is a resource) to deal with both enemies. If you target the tank instead, the healer will just heal him to full once he wakes up.
Finally, if you only need a few more CDs to finish your target, don’t hesitate to Flash Grenade the Tank once he wakes up. If he cracks CC, that’s fine; he was going to crack it eventually, so you might as well waste it now. If not, you have an extra 8 seconds to finish the healer.
KEEP TRACK OF FLECHETTE ROUND
Flechette Round doesn’t go away anymore once you load it. That means you should always have it loaded before every major engagement to maximize your energy expenditure. It also means that you need to keep better track of your FR so as not to use energy needlessly. I often see a fellow Scrapper load up his gun at the spawn, run out to the battlefield, and then load it again right before he opens on an enemy. That’s a great way to hamstring your DPS by starting a fight with 75% of your normal energy.
PvE players use rotations and priority systems to govern their use of abilities. We PvP players also draw on that language of “rotations”, but because of the uncertainties of PvP combat it tends to work out different. I like to call it muscle memory because this gets at the stress training that you actually undergo to prepare for a combat scenario, and the PvP Scrapper is definitely subject to this definition. As a Scrapper (indeed, as most PvP classes), you must prepare your keyboard muscle memory to respond to different scenarios as they arise in a WZ. A standard rotation or even a cooldown priority system does not get at those complexities.
With 2.0, the biggest change to the rotations is the loss of Pugnacity and the gaining of that Upper Hand stack that previously went to Pug. This gives us a huge DPS boost in battle because we have 1 more UH stack to work with. With Alacrity and proper CD management, you won’t even notice the loss of energy regeneration unless you go too crazy targeting a healer.
STANDARD BURST OPENER
- Shoot First + Flechette Round
- Blaster Whip
- Dirty Kick
- Sabotage Charge
- Backblast + Flechette Round
- Sucker Punch
- Blaster Whip
- Sucker Punch
- Sucker Punch
This is as basic as it gets with a Scrapper. The combo maximizes the Flechette Round (FR) DOT while piling on as much burst damage as possible. You almost always want to try and stack Sabotage Charge (SC) on top of a Backblast (BB) + FR application, just so you can maximize your immediate burst damage. A lot of classes will pop their defensive CDs once they are low, so if you stack that damage up front you can knock someone down before their mitigations go up. This combo keeps Upper Hand (UH) maxed as you burn down your opponent.
As a note, you will NOT use this opening combo on healers, especially Op/Sawbones healers with Emergency Medpac. Similarly, you will deviate this combo if your opponent pops defensive CDs, escapes your Dirty Kick, tries to kite, runs away, etc. Why is that? You need your BB to be stacked with your SC, and you don’t want to go all-in too early in the fight. But as a very basic guideline, this combo is your Scrapper PvP 101 plan
1v1 or 2v2 SIDE NODE COMBO
- Shoot First + Flechette Round
- Blaster Whip
- Dirty Kick
- Vital Shot
- Backblast + Flechette Round
- Sucker Punch
- Blaster Whip
- Sucker Punch
- Sucker Punch
- Disappearing Act
- Shoot First + Flechette Round
- Sabotage Charge
- Sucker Punch
When you are in a purely pug WZ, you will find solo defenders on side nodes, especially on maps like Civil War and Novare. Even against ranked teams or competent premades, you and a fellow stealther might pounce a node with two guards. In both these cases, time is of the essence, and you need to maximize your damage output over a 10-16 second long fight. If you wait too long, the rotation will happen and you will lose the cap window.
I add in Vital Shot because it is particularly useful against enemies with lots of armor and damage reduction. Internal damage is unmitigated, so the 20 energy is well spent in terms of raw DPS. This is especially true against our natural enemy, Pyrotechs. VS is also important because it keeps damage going even if you need to LOS and heal.
There are some opponents that you will never, ever apply a Vital Shot against. The first and most obvious are Sins. Decent Sins will immediately use Shroud once 2 DOTs appear on them, and that is a huge blowout for your damage. The second is an Operative. Evasion and Cleanse will remove your DOTs, and you don’t want to waste the GCD or energy. The final one is a Mercenary, because Cure will remove exactly 2 (FR + VS DOT) negative tech effects. You can always deviate from this rule if the situation demands it (e.g. if a Sin uses Shroud too early to cleanse one DOT, you can then VS him after it wears off).
Finally, I work in Disappearing Act into the rotation because you want to maximize your burst. Reinforcements are coming, and if you need the extra Shoot First 4k crit to end the fight and take a node, you need to use your CD to do so.
SNIPER/MERCENARY KNOCKBACK COUNTER
- Sneak for move speed bonus
- Thermal Grenade
- If Leg Shotted, pop Evasion (AGAINST SNIPERS)
- If Leg Shotted and no Evasion, use Sabotage Charge (AGAINST SNIPERS)
- Flurry of Bolts
- Enter melee range
One of the saddest things in WZs is watching a rooted Scrapper just sit there like an idiot. Sorcerer knockback root is admittedly an uncleansable disaster, but against Snipers, sitting around is just unforgiveable. Because Snipers are a natural target for Scrappers, you need to commit this routine to memory. This also applies to Mercenaries with a slowing knockback, except you won’t need to worry about Leg Shot.
The instant you get knocked back, Triage away the root and start moving in. Immediately toss a Thermal Grenade and pop Sneal to increase speed by 50%. If you get Leg Shotted, pop Evasion (or if it is not up, throw down the SC). Do NOT waste energy on Quick Shot as you close the gap. Sniper cover will cause this high energy attack to miss and it is a waste of resources. Save your energy for when you close the gap.
This routine really underscores the importance of muscle memory. You can’t waste a single second in cleansing that initial root. Every moment you spend closing the gap to your target is another moment where that Sniper is out-DPSing you. Wasting GCDs as you close the gap will put you too far behind in damage to finish the fight, especially if your target has all of its cooldowns ready to fire. On my keybinds, Triage is set to Shift-E and Thermal Grenade is set to E. I can quickly tap Shift-E and spam E as a I charge forward.
HEALER KILLING ROUTINE
- Shoot First + Flechette Round (1 UH) [Enter Sustained Damage phase]
- Blaster Whip (2 UH)
- Sucker Punch (1 UH)
- Backblast + Flechette Round
- Blaster Whip (2 UH)
- Sucker Punch (1-2 UH)
- Sucker Punch (0-1 UH)
- Blaster Whip (1-2 UH)
- Flurry of Bolts (1-2 UH)
- Sucker Punch (0-1 UH)
- Blaster Whip (1-2 UH)
- When target is at 30-40% HP, Dirty Kick (1-2 UH) [Enter OVERDRIVE BURST phase!]
- Sabotage Charge (1-2 UH)
- Backblast + Flechette Round (1-2 UH)
- Sucker Punch (0-2 UH)
- Blaster Whip (1-2 UH)
- Sucker Punch (0-1 UH)
- Sucker Punch (0 UH)
- Shoot First + Flechette Round
Killing a healer, ESPECIALLY an Operative healer, is a long and annoying process. A well-geared healer who knows what they are doing is extremely difficult to take down as a solo DPSer, and although you can do it, prepare for a serious struggle. Medpacs, WZ Adrenals (35% reduction), Guard, taunts, kiting, CC, CC breakers, and a ton of other abilities make this a combat nightmare. But with persistence, patience, and flexibility, it can be done.
(NOTE: The above rotation is just a guideline. You WILL need to deviate from it to Tendon Blast, to Flashbang an incoming enemy, to stop an objective cap, or even just to peel off and escape to start the process over. But it is a good sustained damage guideline)
In my experience, killing a healer is broken down into two phases. In the first phase, you maximize sustained damage like a consistent and boring PvEer. You never fall below 60 energy. You keep UH up at all times. You intersperse Flurry of Bolts where needed to keep your energy up. You do NOT go crazy and burn through all your energy in the first 6 seconds. The point is to gradually chip away at your target’s HP, bringing them down to around 30-40% HP.
The moment your target gets to around 30-40% HP, you are going to enter your OVERDRIVE BURST phase. This is where healers start to panic and focus exclusively on kiting and keeping themselves alive. It is also where Emergency Medpac starts to reapply Upper Hand, and your enemy Operative healer will never, ever die. If you haven’t saved your stun, your target is never going to drop. If you have your stun saved, however, you can stack more damage than they can recover from. Make sure that Backblast and Sabotage Charge are both up, because you need to stack those two on top of eachother. A critted Backblast and an uncritted SC will add up to around 7k damage plus the FR DOT. That is very hard to heal through and will hopefully give you the momentum you need to burn down to the end.
Realistically, you are also going to need to kite enemies, snare your target, mezz attackers, and do all sorts of other things to keep your routine going. That’s fine! Just stick to the script as much as possible and you will have a better-than-average chance of killing your target.
Again, muscle memory is huge here. Program yourself to keep a sustained damage routine going until you hit that magical 30-40% mark. Do not wantonly Backblast or waste energy because you are worried that you aren’t hitting hard enough. Similarly, when you get down to the OVERDRIVE phase of the fight, get ready to Kick/SC/FR/BB in rapid succession.
There are probably dozens of other combos we can discuss, but these are the most important. All of them have exceptions and deviations, but they are good guidelines to start out your Scrapping. As will be discussed in the next section, different classes will demand different responses, and you need to be more aware of those class specifics than the basic rotations.
Most experienced PvPers know that certain abilities and tactics are great against one opponent (Quick Shot against Sins) but totally useless against another (Quick Shot against anyone else). Similarly, some classes seem designed for no other reason than to make our lives miserable (Pyrotechs), while others look like they were designed as Scrapper food (DPS Sorcerers). In this section, I will give some idea about our matchups, and the tactics required in each matchup.
Opponents are ranked as easiest victims (greens), average fights (blues), or major threats (reds). Again, some players might have a different experience than mine and might disagree with some classifications. This shouldn’t become a “Well if you did X I would just do Y” hypothetical argument. Also, I am assuming equal gearing on opponents and roughly equal skill, and I will only use the Imperial terminology for enemy abilities. Finally, this assumes a more or less 1v1 scenario. If your target is guarded, being healed, protected by taunts, etc. then that adds a whole new level of complexity. As a good general rule, those circumstances will always bump up your target’s difficulty to the next tier.
You should never lose a fight with these guys if you open on them. Even after 2.0, they just don’t have the survivability to eat a Shoot First followed by a Kick/SC/BB and then stick out a fight. Now, your target might run away like a coward, or pop a Bubble and sit around like an idiot, but he is never going to be able to fight you. For the Sorcerer, a “win” is surviving, kiting, and LOSing while you waste your time and take damage from other enemies. As long as you don’t get too bogged down in that game, you will rack up a lot of Sorc kills.
- Know what to interrupt. Against a DPS Sorcerer, don’t let him get off Thundering Blast. Against a healer, don’t let him resolve a high crit chance Dark Heal or Revivification. Never let any Sorcerer Whirlwind you.
- CC BREAK?
Save your CC breaker for an insta-cast Whirlwind. If you know your opponent doesn’t have it, you can just use it after the usual 4s stun.
- BUBBLE STUN
If your sorcerer doesn’t have bubble stun, you should be killing him in no more than 10 seconds without fail. If you are not, you need to stop using your old WH gear. Bubble Stun makes things at least fair for the Sorcerer, so let’s talk about some tactics for dealing with it.
If you crit on your first Shoot First, you are going to pop the bubble and get stunned. That will give the sorc another GCD after he stands up to rebubble. If this happens, you need to stun, Blaster Whip, back up, and throw a Thermal Grenade. That will break his second bubble while you are safely out of range.
If you DON’T crit on your first Shoot First, quickly backpedal and throw a Thermal Grenade. That should be enough to pop the stun while you are out of range. If he rebubbles right away, fire off your Kick, toss down Sabotage Charge, back up, and then fire off some an Quick Shot. The FR DOT + SC + Shot will be enough to pop the second bubble. Once the bubbles are gone, the Sorcerer is at your mercy.
- FORCE SPEED
Sorcerers say “Force Speed”. I say “Tendon Blast”. Tendon Blast is a hard counter to a DPS sorcerers Force Speed. You need to be quick with your trigger finger, but you can often get TB off before the target leaves the 10 meter range. If you get stunned first and then the sorcerer speeds away, that’s only a small speed bump. Toss a Thermal Grenade, activate Sneak for 50% speed, and use your interrupt to stop Crushing Darkness or Thundering Blast. Healer Sorcerers with Fadeout are trickier, because they bypass the Tendon Blast snare. Thankfully, any healer with Fadeout is also going to be pretty low in the DPS trees, so you won’t take too much damage as you re-close the gap.
- FORCE BARRIRE
Barrier was BWs attempt at making Sorcs less squishy. The only thing it did was make them more cowardly. Treat a Barrier the same way that most third-world dictators treat a United Nations ceasefire. Wait a few seconds, go attack someone else, and then come back and finish the job. Do not wail away at a Barrier. Every time you waste a CD of any kind (except Flurry of Bolts) on a Barrier sorc, BW nerfs a Scoundrel somewhere. It’s a massive waste of time, resources, and energy. Go after another player and keep the opposing Sorc in your sight. The instant that Barrier breaks, go back after him with a vengeance.
- OVERLOAD + ELECTRIC BINDINGS
This is the only real threat that a Sorcerer has. The Electric Binding talent is a nasty 5 second snare that you can’t do anything about. In the first 2 seconds, damage doesn’t break the root. After that, the Sorcerer can freely LOS, heal, and set up for more damage. We literally have no ability to remove this root, so your best bet is to throw a Grenade and/or Sabotage Charge and then either heal up yourself or fire some Flurry of Bolts.
Poor mercenaries. Even after 2.0, the lowly Scrapper still murders you with near-impunity. I emphasize “near” impunity because there is one ability that the Merc will use to make your life miserable. If you get netted, this fight instantly goes up to a blue fight. But without Net, it’s as easy now as it was before 2.0. Because our interrupt works at great range, we can stop Tracer Missile even after a knockback. With TM out of the rotation, Mercenaries just don’t have a lot of stopping power. We have way better burst and a lot of abilities that just eat through Merc armor and defenses. Mercenary healers are also pretty easy to take down as long as you don’t go too crazy and waste energy when Defensive Shield activates. (PRYOTECHS ARE EXCLUDED BECAUSE PYROTECHS ARE OUR WORST ENEMY)
- Against healers, don’t let them resolve a Healing Scan. If you interrupt Rapid Scan but leave Healing Scan untouched, they can chain about 4 of Healing Scans together before you can act. Against Arsenals, obviously stop Tracer Missile.
- CC BREAK?
Electric Dart only. Mercs just don’t have a lot of good CC. If you get Conc Missiled, it really isn’t that bad because the only thing it buys a Merc is time to back up. You can reclose a gap pretty quickly with either DA or Sneak.
- ENERGY SHIELD
Once that shield goes up on a healer, you have two options. You can either a) try and chain stuns through the shield to prevent him from healing. This only works if you have Dirty Kick up, your target’s resolve is empty and you have a friend who can help you stun. You can also Flashbang through the shield as long as your target isn’t DOTted. Your second option is b) go away and come back later. Your DPS is better spent elsewhere if you can’t use stuns to lock out the healing.
- JET BOOST
See the Sniper Knockback Counter in the previous section.
If possible, don’t just eat an Unload. LOS behind a pillar or wall, even just a corner, to end the ability. Save your interrupts for Tracer Missile.
- GETTING NETTED
If you get netted by a lone Merc, your objective is to LOS and heal. My favorite place to LOS a netting Merc is on the node itself on Civil War. Don’t forget to throw a DOT on your target before you start the LOSing, just so you don’t suffer too much DPS loss.
If, however, you get netted in the open, or if you get netted while being focused by multiple attackers, you are a goner. Don’t waste your CDs, don’t get too frustrated, and don’t go into /say and start raging. Toss down as many DOTs as you can, get in any melee damage up close to any targets nearby, and accept your death. Of course, try and make a line to the nearest impediment to LOS your attacker, but don’t stress too much about this. You are probably going to lose 2v1s anyway, net or no net, so this isn’t too much of a boon for the Merc.
- HANDLING HYDRAULIC OVERRIDES
If you get flustered easily, Overrides are going to be a big pain for you. Scrappers need to stay close in order to maximize DPS, and Overrides both negate our Tendon Blast and boost the target’s speed. They also cancel our knockback, so as a general rule, try not to use SF on an Overrided Bounty Hunter. There are two ways to deal with Overrides. The first is to pick your angles and try and lead your target and/or force him to backpedal and lose speed. The second way is to let him do his thing for 6 seconds and wait for Overrides to wear off. Throw a DOT on him, hide, heal up, and wait until the CD wears off. Do not try and chase him on foot if he is just strafing away from you at top-speed. You won’t catch him and you will likely lose the DPS race at that range.
2.0 introduced an arsenal of change designed to give Snipers additional tools to help their terrible stealther matchup. Although these skills are useful for the Sniper, the matchup is still overwhelmingly in our favor if we have any idea how to play our class. This battle still revolves around Entrench, a Sniper CD with a 60s/45s timer. While Entrench is up, the Sniper is immune to Dirty Kick and the Shoot First knockdown. If Entrench is up and ready when you open, the Sniper becomes a worthy opponent. But if you can get off an opener, Entrench becomes much less problematic. The 2.0 Sniper has a lot more slows and some good repositioning skills, but all of that can be negated with smart positioning (back to a wall) and intelligent CD management (using Evasion/Cleanse/Scamper at the right times). As for that ridiculous stealth detection level, just don’t be stupid. Approach from behind or at an angle.
- No interrupts for you!
- CC BREAK?
Against Lethality and Marksman, the absolute worst thing that can happen is eating a Flashbang. Crack this thing immediately. Flashbang lets the Sniper move back, drop down a Probe and/or DOTS, snare you, and then rip you apart as you gap close. This will definitely lose you the fight, as you will take too much damage on the reentry. Against Engineering, make sure that they don’t have a DOT on you before you crack. If they do not, crack it. If they are keeping their DOTs up, then save Escape for the Debilitate.
- KITING AND HEALING
One of the reasons Sniper are so bad against Scrappers is that they often cannot stop a mid-battle heal. To contest the heal, they need to get up and move, which means leaving their Entrench, their Shield, or their Plasma. If you got off to a bad start and are falling behind in DPS (your SF/BB didn’t crit, you accidentally used SF while they were Entrenched, your Dirty Kick is on CD, etc.), then just dart behind a wall, throw down one Underworld Medicine, and keep on fighting.
Entrench has a very obvious animation (floating armoring surrounding the Sniper), so you will always know when it is activated or up. While active, the Sniper will be immune to both the SF knockdown and Dirty Kick. If you see a Sniper with Entrench up, you will NEVER open on him with SF. Just wait for it to wear off or pick a new target. If your Sniper activates Entrench right away, you need to work around it. Just remove Dirty Kick from your standard attack routine and try and burst him down. If you start losing the burst war, duck behind a wall, throw down one heal, and immediately return to the fight.
- BALLISTIC SHIELD:
20% damage mitigation is a lot of damage mitigation, and you just don’t need to be fighting through it. Thankfully, the moment a Sniper pops the giant bubble, he can no longer move from cover. Immediately pop Sneak (if it is up) and disengage. LOS behind a wall and heal, tossing a grenade and/or Vital Shot as you run away. If the Sniper waits for you to come out, you will be at full health and all your CDs will be up. If they follow, they lose the shield.
- COVER PULSE
See the Sniper Knockback Counter section earlier.
- USING EVASION/TRIAGE
Engineering and Lethality Snipers have a lot of tech effects they drop on you. At a certain point, you need to get rid of those to save yourself a lot of damage. Against Engineering, you need to remove Explosive Probe the instant that thing appears on you; Triage it away immediately. Against Lethality, you just need to keep track of your DOTs. If you have at least 2 on you, you need to get them off. Note that they WILL be replaced by a weaker version which you can Triage off immediately.
- GAP CLOSING
Snipers can now roll away and immediately enter Entrench. The Entrench is less of an issue here because you presumably already used your opener on them. The roll, however, is a big issue because it’s a lot of distance to cover. The first thing to do when you need to close the gap is Triage away all tech CDs. Depending on the Sniper spec, Leg Shot may get replaced with a slow. At that point, you need to pop your Evasion. This will not only mitigate damage as you reclose the gap, but it will also remove the slow. When you are confident that all slows have been removed from you, fire off a Scamper to close that last distance. This has the added benefit of giving you Evasion to further minimize damage. This should get you back in the Snipers face without losing too much damage, health, or energy.
Your mirror match is almost entirely determined by two factors. First: If you open on your target, you are probably going to win. If your target opens on you, you are probably going to lose. Second: The Op/Scrapper who doesn’t have his Escape up is probably going to die. If both of those factors are working against you (you get opened on and you have no Escape), you are dead. Try again later. If one of those factors is working against you but the other is in your favor, the fight might be a tossup. If they are both in your favor, the fight is yours. Moreso than any other fight, this one is determined by allies. If they get heals and you don’t, you are dead. If they are guarded and you aren’t, you are dead. If you are taunted and they aren’t, you are dead. But thankfully, this works both ways (hence why this is a blue fight and not a red one).
If your target is a healer, then that changes the tactics of the fight, but not its difficulty. See above for a more detailed description of the moves you need to take down a healer.
- If your target is a healer, make sure it is Kolto Injection AIMED AT HIMSELF before you interrupt. You will know who his target is by the animation. If he draws a Kotlo Vial out of his pocket to shoot up into his thigh, you are interrupting. If you aims out his wrist, you are not. If you see them throwing down Orbital Strike, interrupt it right at the end of the cast after you get a full free GCD of attacks.
- CC BREAK?
NEVER EVER BREAK OUT OF THE HIDDEN STRIKE KNOCKDOWN. This is a huge mistake that I see all the time on both sides of WZs. The 1.5 second knockdown just isn’t that bad, even if it does make you panic. You will always CC break the ensuing Debilitate that follows the knockdown. Your resolve will be full, theirs will be empty, and you might be able to recover lost damage.
If Debilitate does not fill up your resolve bar, however, you are not going to break it. If you Escape with full resolve, the enemy Op can toss down a flashbang, heal up to full, and restart the fight on his terms. It is especially important to save your Escape for Flashbangs thrown by a healer. In 8 seconds, a specd healer can go from 20% health back to 100%.
- STAY RATIONAL
Ops and Scrappers HATE each other. I don’t know what it is about this AC, but whenever two of them meet, they spend most of the WZ trying to kill each other. It’s some combination of ego, competitiveness, scarcity of the class, etc. But for whatever reasons, it can really impede your ability to play effectively. Don’t ignore targets you should be going after (i.e. Healers!) because some other guy wants to hop in your pants. If the enemy Op is going to wait around for you to appear before striking, let him waste his time. Stay on your objective, ignore the enemy Op (unless he is all over your own healers), and keep it cool. Do not get irrational and reciprocate his fixation. This is especially important when it comes to Scamper. Do not think you are Sonic the Hedgehog with a Shotgun and just roll away from your Op while spamming /laugh. If you ever use 2+ Scampers in a row, you have instantly lost the fight just by virtue of spending 50 energy to get away from a fight you didn’t need to win. Stay rational and stick to your objectives.
- TENDON BLAST
For some reason, when Ops/Scrapps fight, both sides feel an uncontrollable urge to leap and run around like spastic kindergartners on a field trip to Sea World. It’s related to that bit about “Staying rational”, but even rational Ops will fight each other as if they are single handedly performing an entire Olympics gymnastic routine. Tendon Blast calms YOU down and messes up their rhythm. From a more technical perspective, TB makes it a lot harder for them to position a Backstab, and makes it a lot easier for you to get your Bacbklast off. It gives you room to heal, room to poke at range, an escape option, and is overall critical in the fight.
- CLOAKING SCREEN
If your enemy pops Cloaking Screen, you DO NOT need to instantly pop Disappearing Act. If you were in a straight up 1v1 on a side node, you can just recloak manually because combat has ended. If you were in a team fight, however, you need to think about how much this fight matters to you. Do you really need to win? If you just want to beat your opponent to prove how awesome you are, then that probably means you should conserve Disappearing Act for when you are trying to seize a side node. In that case, throw down a Grenade on the closest target and hope it catches the enemy Op. Or use the otherwise god awful Blaster Volley to fire a sweeping arc of bolts and hopefully pop stealth.
It’s tempting to separate all of the different Sith Warrior specs into different categories, but all of them are of roughly equal difficulty. Jugg tanks don’t hit hard but they are extremely hard to kill in a 1v1. Marauder Smashers hit hard, have decent survivability, but don’t have any healing or cleansing. Carnage (Ataru Form) Marauders have a beastly 1v1 game, but are vulnerable to kiting and LOS. Jugg smashers are probably the nastiest of the bunch, with awesome survivability and huge hits, but the lack of true healing and DOT cleansing really brings this fight back into your arena. Because I am going over so many different specs in one section, I am going to break down my tips and tactics by specialization, not by ability.
- JUGGERNAUT TANKS
These guys just have a ton of defensive CDs , and while you will eventually kill them, it will probably not happen before reinforcements arrive. They just have too much survivability. I would just completely avoid them if possible. If they solo guard a side node, you aren’t going to kill them before a friend arrives. If they are fighting at a big battle, they just aren’t worth your damage.
If you absolutely have to fight them, here are some tips. Most players are ready to expect the raw mitigation of Invincibility and Saber Ward, but everyone always forgets about Endure Pain and Enraged Defenses. These virtual heals can really prolong a fight and make you work for a kill. Just be persistent but don’t waste your energy. Always make sure you have Vital Shot ticking on your target. Instead of trying to keep the FR DOT up, it is actually more important to keep the FR Armor Pen buff on yourself, so prioritize that over the DOT.
There’s nothing really to interrupt here, so if you see a stray Ravage just feel free to stop it. In terms of CC breakers, save it for Intimidating Roar. You can’t afford your enemy to buy ANOTHER 8 seconds of time in the fight (Remember, reinforcements are on the way), especially if you have a DOT ticking on them and Enraged Defense is healing them for free. As for Evasion, use it only when you have 5 stacks of Armor Sunder on you.
- JUGGERNAUT/MARAUDER SMASHERS
Nasty opponents. You need to deal with all the Endure Pain/Enraged Defense/Saber Ward survivability, but now with the added threat of 6k Smashes. You might even have to still deal with Invincible, depending on the particular skill tree spec. Marauders don’t have Enraged Defense or Endure Pain, but they do have the equally scary Cloak of Pain and Undying Rage. The only good news is that these guys are still stuck at melee range and still have no way of removing DOTs, and those are the vulnerabilities you need to exploit.
KEEP IT UP AT ALL TIMES. It bypasses armor, does a lot of damage, procs Sucker Pucnh/UH generation, and these guys can’t remove it.
TENDON BLAST + HEALING:
The most important ability in this fight is Tendon Blast, although people often think it is more powerful than it really is. Smashers still have Saber Throw and Force Scream to use at range, not to mention Push to keep you away and close the gap again on their terms. A decent player will not skip a beat when he gets snared, quickly switching to ranged attacks as you try and DPS. Instead of trying to toe-to-toe the 80%+ critting Throw/Scream, you need to use your snare as a time to heal. As you are moving to an LOS point (a column, a corner, a wall, etc.) fire off Tendon Blast. By the time their next GCD comes up, you should already be out of LOS. Drop down 1-2 heals and keep fighting. During that time, your FR/VS DOT are doing some work, you are regaining health, and your CDs are coming back up.
TENDON BLAST VS. SHOCKWAVE:
The other time to use Tendon Blast is right when you see 4 stacks of Shockwave on your target. Fire Tendon Blast and sidestep away. Even good Smashers will get caught in the moment and fire off a Smash while they are snared. Even if they do not (it’s unlikely) you still buy yourself valuable time for your DOTs to keep ticking.
The second most important ability in this fight is XS Freighter Flyby. Smashers really need to stay in melee range to be effective, whereas a Scrapper does have some passable ranged damage abilities. When the fight breaks out, you are going to slightly alter your opening combo. Instead of Kicking into SC and BB, you are going to Kick and follow it up with a Freighter Flyby right on your head. The first tick will hit them no matter what. You can then follow up with Tendon Blast to guarantee another tick hitting. After that, you are going to sit in your Freighter flames and force them to fight in the massive internal damage. If they back out of it, you will throw a Thermal Grenade after them, duck down to a crouch, and fire some Charged Burst. If they stay in the fire, they eat a massive 5k+ internal damage over the next 9 seconds. It’s like your very own smash!
INTERRUPTS AND THE REST:
Not a lot of solo applications, but if you see one of these guys choking an ally, interrupt it. That is how they tick up their Smash damage. For Escapes, you just want to be breaking out of Intimidating Roar. As for Evasion, I like to use it as they build their way to a big Smash; most of their filler abilities are melee, and they don’t have any serious DOTs for you to cleanse.
- CARNAGE MARAUDERS
I have heard the Ataru Form warrior described as the “Queen” of 1v1 combat after DPS Sins (If anyone can recall who said that, I will happily attribute it to them). These guys actually hit harder than Smashers, although their damage is spread out over many fast, armor penetrating, and extremely loud saber strikes. Despite not having Jugg defensive CDs, this opponent is surprisingly tanky with just Cloak of Pain and Undying Rage. The key to this fight is, as with other Sith Warrior fights, DOTS + Healing. But even more important than both of those abilities is Evasion.
The vast majority of Carnage attacks are melee, unlike with Smashers. Massacre, Gore, Vicious Slash, Battering Assault, etc. are all classified as “Melee” attacks as opposed to “Force” (like Smash and Scream). This makes Evasion a bit like our own Force Shroud, at least in the Carnage matchup. It only lasts 3 seconds, or 4 with PvP Enforcer Gear if you went that route, but in those 3 seconds this ability is going to put in a lot of work for you.
You are going to save Evasion for when one thing happens: The Ataru Marauder pops Berserk. Berserk gives your opponent some impressive Rage management, but it also decreases the GCD of Vicious Slash by .5 seconds. That means you get to eat 3 of these in the time you would normally eat 2. Evasion mitigates all 3 of those hits, saving you 5k+ in damage right there. Combine that with Shield Probe (another 3k+ roughly), and you have a solid mitigation shield to use against the Marauder. Ideally, you want to pop Evasion when you also have a DOT on you, but if you see Berserk start, you need to get Evasive right away.
TENDON BLAST TO HEAL:
Carnage marauders actually have decent range capacity and gap closing. Force Scream hits like a truck, and their Throw is nothing to sneeze at. Don’t mess around fighting beyond 10 meters against a Carnage guy because he is just going to fire off these techniques and then close the gap. Because your own best abilities are melee, you will lose that DPS exchange by just throwing some Flurrys of Bolts and Thermals. Instead, use the Snare opportunity to LOS and heal. That extra 2.5-4k HP can go a long way towards winning you the fight.
FLASHBANG > UNDYING RAGE:
It is easy to forget that Undying Rage prolongs a fight by 4 seconds. If the Ataru Marauder is not Berserked, that’s between 2-3 GCDs depending on lag, reaction time, fight timing, etc. If Berserk is up, as it very well might be, that gives 4-5 GCDs depending on those factors. I see a lot of guys get a Carnage spec down to that Undying Rage point only to lose in those last 4 attacks. Flashbang is our natural counter to this. It requires a bit of foresight (as in, don’t Vital Shot later in the fight), but this ability completely counters Rage. Throw it down and just wait. If Flash isn’t up, or if a DOT is still ticking, you can substitute a Tendon Blast and just run away while his Rage wears off.
There is a reason that Sins get the Ranked WZ nod over Ops on most teams. This class brings better sustained damage, survivability, and utility than we could ever dream of, while still rivaling our burst in almost every respect. Their abilities laugh at us on an almost one-to-one comparison. Blackout can be Speccd to give 25% damage reduction. Force Speed can be used from Stealth. Force Shroud, arguably the best tanking CD in the game, renders Evasion completely irrelevant. Sins in any spec will consistently have access to the same pool of CC as we do, with a hard stun at range, a mezz, and a snare. Although there are a variety of different sin specs (31/0/10 TankShock build, 0/13/28 Deception, etc.), all of them are equally difficult for us to kill. Unlike with the Sith Warrior ACs, your tactics are not going to change much against the different Sin variations.
Against Tanksins, you don’t have anything important to interrupt; you can’t waste it in the uninterruptible Lightning, and Whirlwind is probably speccd for instacast. That’s actually fine, because against ANY Sin, whether tank or DPS, you almost always want to be interrupting one move: Crushing Darkness. In the Tanksin matchup, it is the only move you can interrupt. In the Madness fight, it is the move that is going to have the nastiest Deathmark synergy.
- CC BREAK?
Always Escape from Electrocute, the 4s ranged stun. During those 4 seconds you can eat a lot of damage, especially if you have DOTs ticking on you. The Sin will also heal during that time, either from DOTs or from Lightning.
Don’t worry about Whirlwind. If the Sin had to Whirlwind you, you were probably winning anyway. Unlike a Sniper, the Sin has to stay close to be effective, so it isn’t like the Whirlwind gives him a chance to reposition. Unlike an Operative, the Sin has no non-DOT heals, so he can’t actually regenerate during those 8 seconds either. The same goes for Low Slash (if they have it). The 4s stun only works if you are undamaged. Spike is also not worth a break, because it only lasts 2 seconds.
- FORCE SHROUD
If it weren’t for this ability, this matchup actually wouldn’t be so hard. This ability was made to counter us. Literally all of our good abilities (Blaster Whip, Backblast, Sucker Punch, Dirty Kick, Tendon Blast, Thermal Grenade, Flechette Round, and Shoot First) are Tech. Only Flurry of Bolts, Quick Shot, and Charged Burst fall in the “Ranged” category and are going to penetrate the Shroud defenses. Against non Tanksins, this move represents 2-3 GCDs of immunity plus a DOT cleanse. Against those who have speccd it, it gives them 3-4 GCDs of immunity on top of the cleanse.
You need to do two things to counter Shroud. The first is to use ranged attacks, but NOT necessarily Quick Shot. You will ONLY use Quick Shot if your Sin target does not also have Dark Ward (the purple energy field) up around them. Dark Ward increases Shield Chance, and you don’t want to waste energy firing into a 50%+ shield chance. If Dark Ward gets popped along with Shroud, you use Flurry of Bolts as you run away with Sneak. If there is no Dark Ward, feel free to use Quick Shot instead; as a good rule, you won’t use Shot against Tanks, but you will against DPS Sins.
The second thing to counter Shroud is saving DOTs. You will not Vital Shot a Sin who has not used Shroud. If you do and the Sin pops his CD, you are going to have wasted 20 energy for about 150 damage. Once Shroud wears off, however, you will definitely be throwing down that VS DOT.
- TENDON BLAST ONLY AGAINST TANKS
Tendon Blast is normally our fight equalizer, but it is really quite bad against Sins. Madness Sins pose a bigger problem because their DOTs tend to give pushback on your healing, making it difficult to even run away, LOS, and resolve a single heal before they come rushing back at you with Force Speed. If you need to heal against a Madness/Deception Sin, you are going to do so off of a Flashbang or a Dirty Kick, not a TB.
Against Tanksins, however, TB is a great opportunity to duck away and heal.
- EVASION > ASSASSINATE + DOTS
Evasion is hugely important in this matchup for two reasons. First, it grants immunity to Assassinate (also Maul). Sins will almost always drop this when you are at around 20% health, so the instant you hit 30% health, you are going to pop it. The Sin will either immediately fire it or wait 1 GCD. If you can avoid that damage, you are well-positioned to end the fight.
Against those Madness guys, you are going to use it when you have 2 DOTs on you (Crushing Darkness + Death Field). This will be a sizeable setback to your opponent, and you should be about 2 GCDs ahead on damage when you cleanse yourself.
You are going to die a lot against Pyrotechs. Whoever designed this spec, both in Mercenary and Powertech, had an existential hatred of Scrappers. Literally everything about Pyrotechs has been optimized to spectacularly, messily, and efficiently murder our kind. All of their important damage is Tech (internal an elemental), which melts right through Evasion and our meager armor. They have equal capabilities at range (Dart, Detonator, Unload, Railshot, Incendiary Missile) and at melee (Flame Burst, Rocket Punch). They have defensive CDs to rival a Marauder (Energy Shield + Kolto Overload), utility to rival a Sin (2 Taunts + Grapple), and CC that rivals even us (Carbonize at 45s CD and Dart at 60s CD). Their sustained damage is excellent, with great resource management and low-cost abilities. Their burst is terrifying, especially if you get to 30% HP (which you will). Oh, and they have Stealthscan (!!! WHY?!), which in the hands of a skilled Pyrotech is a 100% hard counter to Disappearing Act. Stealthscan alone just proves that the Pyrotech designer was a lifelong enemy of Scrappers everywhere, not to mention all of the other awful thing they can do to us.
Anyone who tells you that a Scrapper has a good matchup against Pyrotechs is lying. Or they just play against 5 year olds, and even then, they probably barely win. The majority of your WZ deaths will come from this class, and although I am not saying “nerf Pyrotechs”, you will probably want them nerfed if you ever encounter 2+ in a single WZ. Because this is our hands-down worst matchup, I am going to go into more detail to help you beat these monsters.
The only two abilities you even can interrupt are Unload and Death From Above. Don’t bother interrupting DFA; just run away from the AOE. If you see Unload you might as well interrupt it, but that ability doesn’t even hit very hard, so it won’t help much.
- CC BREAK?
Never, ever break a Carbonize. It doesn’t last long enough to matter. Dart, however, is a disaster if you get hit with it. Break it if you can. Otherwise, be prepared to eat 4 seconds of 2 DOTs, plus 2 GCDs of massive burst.
- STAY CALM AND COLLECTED
Fighting a PT is mega frustrating. No matter what you do it will always seem like the PT is doing more damage and losing less HP. The trick is to stay calm and not go haywire with your abilities. I see panicked Operatives/Scrappers fire off 2 Vital Shots in a row, reapply Flechette Round 3 times over the course of a single BB CD, spam Quick Shot to cause more damage, etc. All of this is counterproductive and just helps you die. Stay calm. Accept that you will die a few times. Don’t tunnel vision on a PT that is giving you trouble.
- EVASION = GOOD!
The first time you get two DOTs on you, you are going to pop Evasion. This ability doesn’t respect the GCD and will cleanse off both the Incendiary Missile and the Cylinder DOT. The problem with this strategy is that it is just so darn easy for a PT to just reapply both DOTs. Flame Burst quickly reapplies its burn, and Missile has a super low CD. But because Evasion doesn’t respect the GCD, you don’t actually waste anything by cleansing the DOTs. You do force the PT to waste 16 heat reapplying IM, or you save yourself the IM damage if they choose to not reapply it. Either way, it is helpful. (NOTE: Evasion does NOT remove Detonator or Explosive Dart, nor does it prevent their damage).
- TRIAGE = BAD!
At first glance, Triage looks like a great ability in this matchup. You cleanse off 2 DOTs against a class that relies on 2 DOTs to do most of its serious damage. Unfortunately, unlike Evasion, Triage DOES respect the GCD. Remember how PTs can easily reapply their DOTs? It is never worth it to waste an entire GCD to get rid of a DOT that they are going to reapply as part of their normal attack routine. Don’t waste your time. You won’t win a war of attrition against a decent PT, so your goal needs to be to cause as much damage as possible. Triage wastes time with no benefit. DO NOT USE IT.
- KEEP VITAL SHOT UP
Vital Shot gives internal damage that is unmitigated by PT armor. Powertechs can’t remove it, and it does a lot of work for you at a low cost. Keep it up at all times.
- HEALS + TENDON BLAST > ENERGY SHIELD
Energy Shield is a very simple defensive CD (25% mitigation, 12s, 120s CD), but it is a nightmare in a 1v1 fight. That extra 25% reduction really cuts into your damage. You will often see PTs at 30-40% health pop Shield and kill a full HP Scrapper as they just drop down to 10-20% HP themselves. When this gets stacked with Kolto Overload, you are in real trouble.
The good news is that PTs are stuck with a melee range interrupt and only 1 CC that can be used at range. The other good news is that Energy Shield DOES respect the GCD. When the enemy PT pops Shield, you are going to use this moment of respite to TB, Sneak, and run away to heal. This is also a great time (indeed, the only time) to use Triage to cleanse off some DOTs. LOS away from the PT and pop one Underworld Medicine. The slowed PT will walk over to you. Throw down another heal and/or use Triage. By this time, Energy Shield will have only 6 or so seconds remaining on it, and you will have 4k more health than when you started. Keep kiting if possible while keeping VS ticking, throwing in a Thermal Grenade where needed, and switching to your melee abilities if you have no choice.
- DON’T WASTE BIG DAMAGE CDS INTO SHIELD
While Energy Shield is up, your plan is to survive and avoid toe-to-toeing the big bad Pyrotech. That means conserving your scary CDs (BB, SC, FR, SF) until AFTER shield is gone. Sure, you can damage the PT while Shield is humming, but your best bet is just to heal and survive during that intermission. Think of it this way: You can either deal 75% of your normal damage while taking full damage from the PT, or you can heal up to almost full while taking virtually no damage at all. After it wears off, you will have all your CDs ready to go to rip apart the guy with no added mitigation.
- JUKING STEALTH SCAN
Sometimes you absolutely need to use a midcombat Disappearing Act to survive or kill your target. If you are on a side node at Civil War/Novare, you might need it for the extra burst on your PT victim. If you are in a big fight, you might need to evade and survive long enough for a respawn to reinforce your position. Either way, Stealth Scan can really mess up your day. A good PT will drop it down right after you vanish, timing it so it is right on top of you.
How do they predict your movement? Right before you disappear they can still see your forward angle. Instead of popping Evasion –> Disappearing Act and just taking off in a straight line (which you shouldn’t be doing anyway, but it is most important against PTs), you are going to quickly sidestep or even backpedal to trick the PT. This will get you out of the Stealth Scan and ready to unleash Shoot First.
A lot of the advice above pertains to 1v1s or duels, or at least situations in which you are primarily focused on 1 target. But as we all know, Warzones are not about killing targets, but rather about winning and holding objectives. Scrappers might not have the best survivability or damage output, but we are actually quite good at winning WZs (even if our scoreboard stats don’t necessarily show our contribution). In this section, I will talk about some of the tricks and tactics that will help you win specific WZs. I don’t want to get too detailed about all of my tricks and tactics because I would not want our enemies to see where I am hiding and what I am doing. But it will still serve as a great starting point for you to win some WZs.
Like with class matchups, I have colorcoded the WZs to indicate whether they are strong ones for Scrappers (green), ones that represent both challenges and advantages (blue), and ones that suck (red like your face will be during Huttball)
My favorite warzone. This one is probably the best one for Scrappers because the 1v1, 1v2, and 2v2 scenario is very common. Scrappers also make excellent node defenders on this map, with stealth, Dart, and most importantly, Freighter Flyby, an ability that singlehandedly holds a node for 9-12 seconds. Finally, the terrain is very friendly for kiting and LOSing, which lets us maximize our Tendon Blast and healing.
OFFENSE: THE SNOW BLITZ GAMBIT
After spawning I will immediately rush to Snow with Sneak on, using my Stealth/Sneak spamming to keep move speed high. You need to be fast because your opponent might have used Force Speed or Predation to reach the node quickly. But on the way, you need to see how many opponents are there.
IF YOU SEE 1 IMPERIAL, you are going to go for the 1v1 fight and node cap. This will probably a straight up 1v1, and that is where we shine. Remember, the node takes 8 seconds to cap. Ideally you want to open on your target with Shoot First, but if you can’t stop the cap, you need to crack stealth with Flurry of Bolts and cause damage.
IF YOU SEE 2 IMPERIALS, you are going to turn around and run back mid. You don’t want to try your luck in a 1v2, and if the Imps brought 2 to snow, your presence will be more helpful back at mid.
DEFENSE: SLEEP DART AND CALL “INC”
Sometimes you are guarding a node and you see 1-2 enemies that you know you can’t beat. If it’s one enemy, maybe you know he is a full EWH Pyrotech, and you are pretty sure he is going to kill you. Use Sneak to approach your target and Sleep Dart the one trying to cap the node. WAIT UNTIL HE IS AT 6 SECONDS OF THE CAP. You want to maximize reinforcement time. If he breaks the CC, immediately re-CC him and then use SF+FR to open on his friend. The reason we are immediately attacking is because we know his CC breaker is down. This gives us our best chance to take on his friend and cause damage before your team can come save you.
If it is only 1 target that you can’t beat, Sleep Dart him once and call inc when he has capped the node to 6 seconds. If he cracks the Dart, let him try and recap the node as his resolve lowers. At 7 seconds of capping, the second time, open on him with SF+FR. Your knockdown won’t fill up resolve (it has lowered a bit since the last dart) and you will have bought at least 8 seconds for your allies to come and help you.
OFFENSE: COUNTING ENEMIES AT MID
You should always be counting enemies, but it is especially important as a Scrapper because you have the ability to solo cap a side node. If you ever see 7 people mid, you are immediately going to break off to the side and contest the side node. Remember, we are excellent in a straight up 1v1 context, and it doesn’t get any more isolated than a 1v1 on a side node on Alderaan. If you think your team can hold out mid, you can even go for the 3cap if you already have 2 nodes. I do this all the time and it wins our team a lot of WZs.
This is one of those areas where I don’t want to give away too many secrets of our class (Sins/Shadows can use this advice too, as can our enemy Ops), but I will say that you need to position yourself well when defending a node. Against non-stealthers it doesn’t matter where you stand. You will see them coming, you will move over a bit to let them waste an AOE, and then you will open on them when they start to cap.
But against stealthers, it’s a lot scarier. Your attacker will stealth up to the node, pop Sneak/Blacout, and then have 6 seconds to scope out the area for you. If you are just sitting on top of the node like an idiot, you are going to get jumped. The trick is to position yourself somewhere that a stealther can’t find you BUT you can still see the node AND respond to a cap in time. The stealther will wander around for a while, decide that no one is there, and then try and cap the node. That’s when you can walk over and open on him.
I prefer Civil War to Voidstar by a hair, but this is still our second/tied-for-first best WZ (my win % on both is at 65 with a ton of games played). Having a decent Scrapper almost guarantees that you will take the first door and be able to strongly pressure the third door (second door is always the hardest). Moreover, as a defender, a decent Scrapper can hold that second door for the entire game, provided he has remotely competent allies. I have a few positioning tricks that I won’t reveal hear so my enemies do not know where to find me, but let’s just say that you can be a serious jerk on defense if you know what you are doing.
OFFENSE: FIRST DOOR 1v1 ON THE “OFF” NODE
A decent Scrapper will win you the first door in a few ways. Let’s go with the first scenario: a 1v1 on the “off” door (The door where your other 7 allies are not attacking).
Let’s assume a straight 1v1 for now. We can get to the 2v2 later. Now, unless they left a darn Pyrotech on the door, you should be able to blitz through this guy before he calls for reinforcements. Even against one of the monstrous Pyrotech, if you can’t get him the first time you can probably get him the second time when all his defensive CDs are down. But I am going to leave the fight itself to you. The real trick is the preparation for the fight.
First thing is first: Wait until the respawn to attack. Sit where you can see the Voidstar shield and wait for the respawn area energy screen to close and lock. Now it is time to go. You need to maximize your kill time and your bomb plant time; nothing is worse than killing a guy and getting your plant interrupted at 6 seconds.
Second: Scout for stealthed enemies. It’s easy to find a Tanksin because they tend to guard their partner. If the visible defender has guard on him, chances are that there is a Tanksin lurking around. Even if you don’t see the guard, there still might be a DPS Operative/Sin skulking about. Pop Sneak and do a quick run around of the area while Sneak is up. You should be able to identify enemies.
Third: Go eat the Health Pack on the side. You don’t need it because your goal is to kill your target as quickly as possible. Your victim, however, would love to CC you and run off to grab health. This prolongs the fight and makes it hard to kill your target and have enough time to plant the bomb.
Assuming you follow these 3 rules, you have decent gear/skill, and you are actually in a 1v1, you should have little difficulty in taking that first door. This class is BUILT for a duel, and it doesn’t get any more duely than the first Voidstar door.
OFFENSE: FIRST DOOR 1v2/2v2 ON THE “OFF” NODE
Now let’s say we have 2 defenders on the door. If you can find a Shadow/Scrapper to come with you, you can go for the door. Adding variables is never good for time-sensitive objectives, but maybe you two are geared enough that it doesn’t matter and you can blast through the guards.
But a far better bet is actually to bluff to the door (run towards it obviously before stealthing), and then peel off for the main fight. You will then have an 8v6 on that door and should be easily able to take it.
The point is to get the defenders to respect your attack. If they stop respecting the attack, come back and cause trouble. You have about 3 minutes to take that first door without falling behind schedule, and that door needs to be all you.
OFFENSE: THIRD DOOR
Repeat your first door tactics on the third door. Although there isn’t a literal wall between the doors, the distance is such that you can still use those same tactics to win.
DEFENSE: EMERGENCY RESPONDER
Sneak and Stealth are an awesome combo for emergency responding to doors. The trick is to find one person on the other door on your minimap, see what his name is, and then keep track of his HP in the Ops Frames. If his HP starts to drop, turn to the minimap. If there are only 2 defenders there and your own door is looking okay, it’s time to pop Sneak and run over. If you can’t break away from the fight, this is a great time to use Disappearing Act to transition to the other door. This is just one example of a time where Disappearing Act is way better when used for objectives and not arbitrary kills.
DEFENSE: THE LAST MAN STANDING
Speaking of Disappearing Act, this ability all but guarantees that you can hold a door well past the deaths of your entire team. The trick is using it at the right time and positioning after your allies are all dead.
The moment that you are one of the last 3 defenders alive, you are going to run behind some LOS and pop Disappearing Act. At this point, your allies are probably going to die and the door will be wide open. Find a place to stand where you won’t get noticed. Wait until the bomb is at 7 seconds of planting before acting. At this time, you have three options. If you are close enough to the planter that you won’t get intercepted, run up and SF+FR him in the back. Yeah, you will probably die, but you will die so fast that you will probably be up in the respawn right as the doors open, having bought more than enough time for your team.
If you are far away from the planter and/or worried about his allies, just poke him with Flurry of Bolts from afar. Again, you will probably get vaporized in about 3 seconds, but hopefully you will be right out the doors on the next respawn.
Finally, if there are multiple planters, just throw in a Thermal Grenade. Make sure you throw it at 6.5 or 6 seconds instead of 7; the grenade actually has a travel time and you don’t want to get beaten by lag, graphical or otherwise.
DEFENSE: BOWDAAR TO THE RESCUE!
In between Disappearing Act CDs every 90s, you still might need to hold the door from lots of attackers. That’s where your Freighter comes in. Run behind a pillar so you are out of LOS and then drop the flyby right on the door. Put it out a bit in front so it maximizes AOE. If you have a bunch of guys around you ready to interrupt, throw down Flashbang before you use Flyby.
It isn’t a bad Scrapper map, but the relative openness of the terrain can sometimes make it hard to kite and focus enemy targest without yourself getting focused. The real problem is that it is very difficult to take a side node. On your own (as when you solo a defender) it will take an outrageous 18 seconds to cap a node. This can make it very difficult to 1v1 a defender and claim your prize before help arrives or he force speeds/charges back from the spawn, . But on the other hand, because teammates can take a node so quickly when working together, your awesome CCs (Flashbang, Kick, and Dart) give your team an appreciable edge in defending against a respawn.
OFFENSE: WAIT FOR HEALERS TO REVEAL THEMSELVES
Right when the door opens you are going to head mid. Run BEHIND the little hit (along the sandbags) to flank the enemy position. Wait about 2 seconds while you mark your target and any oher healers. Once all the enemy DPS has engaged your team and your healer is at the back lines, you are going to strike.
Why do we wait? The Novare nodes are very open and it is very easy to get focused. You need to minimize this chance by letting the Marauders/Jugs charge ahead, and letting the Sins/Ops flank your own lines to hit your healers. If anyone notices you right away it will be a Merc or Sniper (easy) or a Pyrotech (oh god), but even that is better then getting instantly jumped by 3-4 Marauders on top of the Sniper and Pyro.
Even if you start to get focused, this isn’t a bad thing. If a premades DPS rotates to deal with you, your team can push ahead and set up further on the node. Healers can duck into the hut and your team can take the high ground while the Imps focus on you for a moment.
KITING WITH LIMITED COVER
There aren’t a lot of good places to kite on Novare. Some of them look good but are actually traps (NEVER GO INTO THE HUT TO HEAL), and others look silly but are actually awesome (crouching and healing at the base of the artillery). Because healing and kiting is something that separates us from Sins, we need to take advantage of our unique class strengths. Here is a quick list of the dos and do nots of kiting on Novare.
- GOOD: Outside of the Hut. Hug the wall and throw down a heal before heading back out. If you get caught, TB and run around the corner to the back wall and heal there.
- GOOD: Base of the Artillery. This really seems like a silly place to hide because it is totally exposed in the middle of the map and it just isn’t very big. But upon closer examination, it’s actually quite decent. If you hug the base of the artillery, where the big metal post connects the gun to its giant base, you can’t be seen from the other side. If you crouch down as you do so, you are even less visible. This gives you a great opportunity to break LOS from any Snipres or PTs, toss down a heal, and keep on moving. It is also the only cover that is available to you if you get in trouble while out in the open.
- GOOD: Walls at side nodes. On both side nodes, there are 2 giant, flat pieces of metal that look like big walls. You can hug these for some LOS and kiting opportunities if you need to heal up or lose pursuers.
- BAD: Hiding in a hut. At first glance, the huts seem made for hiding. Your back is protected, you have a high ground advantage, your allies can stand in front of you, etc. In practice, however, it is an AOE nightmare. Getting CCd while you kite is frustrating on its own, but if you only have 1 attacker, you can still recover. Getting CCd in the hut puts you at the mercy of every Force Storm, Orbital Bombardment, Smash, and Death From Above on the enemy team. I have ducked into a hut with 40% health to heal, thrown down 2 heals, and left the hut with 30% health JUST from AOEs.
OFFENSE: CHAIN CCS WHILE ALLIES CAP
This is true on a lot of maps, but moreso on Novare because of the long cap time. You will rarely, if ever, participate in a node capture. Because of your 30s CD single target stun, 12s CD single target snare, 60s CD AOE 5 target mezz, and your Sleep Dart, your job is almost always to prevent respawners or reinforcements from reaching a node that your allies are capping.
The trick is to use your CCs in the right order to maximize their effectiveness. Open wih a Sleep Dart on a NON-TANK (tanks have Guard, and if they guarded a target that takes damage, they will wake up). Then toss down Flashbang at a clump of at least 2-3. Next, activate Sneak and run up to any stragglers that you missed. TB them and stick them in place while running up to the node. Finally, get ready to kick anyone that breaks CC and charges your capping allies.
OFFENSE: THE SOLO SIDE GAMBIT IS VERY RISKY
As a scrapper, our job is almost always to pressure a side node. Unfortunately, Novare makes this difficult because of the cap time. Even if you kill your target, you still need an uncontested 18 seconds to take the node. Against a competent team, especially a premade, you are never going to get this time without some good luck and/or good allies. That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t go for the node. It just means you need to be careful when doing so.
First thing is first. Wait for the respawn doors to open and let out reinforcements before you attack. If no one is heading your way, you are going to strike RIGHT AWAY. You need the extra time. Let’s assume that you kill your target, but that you can’t do it in under 10 seconds.
Now comes the hard part: Taking the node. Get as far inside the hut as possible before trying to cap. DON’T RECUPERATE! You don’t have enough time. You want to maximize the distance beween reinforcements and yourself, and I can’t count the number of times I have capped a node the second before I got hit.
Next, don’t be afraid to stop capping if you realize that reinforcements are coming. Once they get over the hill they are about 1 second away from hitting you. Instantly pop Stealth and juke away from the node. They will drop an AOE to catch you, so you need to be smart and avoid it. DO NOT GET CAUGHT OUT OF STEALTH. You almost assuredly won’t have full health from your last fight. You now have two options depending on how much the node has been capped and how many reinforcements arrived.
IF IT’S JUST 1 DEFENDER, Sleep Dart him. He probably used his CC break in the last fight. Go back to capping the node. If you still need more time, restealth and Dart him again before going back to cap.
IF IT’S 2 DEFENDERS, Sleep Dart one, flashbang the other, and try and cap the node. You will have 5 seconds to do so, maybe 6 if they are slow. If you need more than 5-6 seconds, don’t even try. Just break off and head mid. By pulling 2 defenders to the side you ensure a 7v6 at mid with the favor going to your team.
DEFENSE: DON’T BE AFRAID TO LET YOUR ATTACKERS PARTIALLY CAP THE NODE
Let’s say you are solo guarding a side node when 1-2 attackers come. If it’s 1 attacker and you can solo him, just kill him and move on. But if it’s 1 attacker who you can’t kill (you are undergeared) or 2 attackers period, you need to stall for time.
IF 1 ATTACKER THAT YOU CAN’T FIGHT, call “inc” and Sleep Dart him. If he breaks it, Sleep Dart him again. If reinforcements STILL haven’t showed up, let him cap the node for 9 seconds (half) before either CCing again or opening the fight. The node can be partially capped without actualy hurting your team’s performance, so use that time to wait for help.
IF 2 ATTACKERS, call “inc” and Sleep Dart one of the attackers. DO NOT ENGAGE THE OTHER. If you do and the other guy has his CC break up, you are going to be in a 2v1, and if these guys are decently geared or skilled, you are dead. Instead, let the other guy start capping the node. When he has capped for about 5 sceonds, Sleep Dart him. His friend will then wake up and start capping. Let him cap for 5 seconds and then Sleep Dart him. His friend wakes up and starts capping. Let it channel for 1 second before darting again (that first second of channeling doesn’t do anything). At this point, if your team isn’t coming to help you. you weren’t going to win anyway. But if they are, you need to hold out a little longer. Open up on the second guy and fight for your life.
This is by far the best map for Scrapper DEFENSE. As I will argue, Scrappers can defend nodes against 2-3 attackers for long periods of time if they know what they are doing. The defense area has an awesome mix of cover and open space, which lets you kite but also hide from incoming attackers. You can clearly see the respawn from the node, which lets you know who is coming long before the shields open. So why isn’t this a green-colored WZ? Scrapper offense is a lot harder on this map. The mid battleground is extremely chaotic and you will really notice your survivability deficits, especially if you get marked. After Gunslingers, you are probably the worst class to collect orbs. Moreover, those same reasons that make your defense so robust also totally mess up your offense. This is still not a bad map (unlike Huttball), but it is no Civil War.
OFFENSE: DON’T GO MID ALONE
This applies to every class in the game, but because we have stealth and lack decent survivability CDs, it applies doubly to us. NEVER GO MID ALONE. You are just feeding the enemy team points without having any positive effect. If you are tempted to sneak mid on a “scouting” mission, rethink your statement and stay out; does your team really need to know that there are 6 guys mid? Can’t you see that from outside the middle area? If you absolutely must venture through an uncontrolled, uncontested mid, use Sneak and hug the edges.
OFFENSE: AVOID ORBS
There is an argument to be made for ALL CLASSES to avoid orbs, but I don’t want to get into that. Of all the classes that could carry an orb, whether or not you think it is a good winning strategy, you are probably the worst or second worst. Your only redeeming quality is Sneak which gives you a 6s 50% speed boost, but you can’t stealth without the orb falling off, so you can’t even maximize that ability. Moreover, if attackers are paying attention, it is just so easy to kill you. Shield Probe and Evasion will not save you from charging smashers, pulling Shadows, or grappling PTs. Through your superior DPS output, you have probably already made yourself a target of enemy attention. Why would you want to increase that attention by grabbing a huge target sign that even shows up on the minimap!? Finally, and perhaps most importantly, people that grab orbs are people that don’t care if they get opened on. Juggernauts, Pyrotechs, Snipers, and even Sorcerers can all rapidly counter an enemy opener, whether they shoot from around the corner, charge, pull, etc. But if YOU get caught without stealth, you have lost your best ability and buff (Flechette Round). Let other people collect orbs. You stay stealthed and prepared to kill things.
OFFENSE: AVOID THE RAMPS ABOVE THE ORBS
The big problem with Hypergate is the openness of the fighting area at mid. But at least if you stick around the big datacron/holocron in the center, you can kite around its edges. Or if you stick near the entrances, you can use the wall protrusions or corners to LOS. There are a surprising number of kiting points around those areas, so you need to learn to use them.
But the one place that you can’t kite are the ramps above the orbs. You see a lot of fights happen there, and for your own safety, you are going to do everything possible to NOT fight on those ramps. There is zero cover, zero kiting, and zero mercy if you get caught up there. Our survivability is bad enough before we decide to remove all option of kiting and LOSing/healing. If you got marked for whatever reason, or are against a capable premade, you are especially screwed if you get focused in that open killzone. Stay away if you can!
You might observe that healers and other priority targets sometimes venture onto these slanted ramps. Do you follow? That’s a judgment call that I leave to you. If you are confident that you have healer backup, taunts, and enough friends around you, then you can go for it. But don’t just charge up the ramp to get focused and murdered.
OFFENSE: IF YOU CAN SEE THE NODE DEFENDER, TRY AND TAKE IT….
This is part 1 of a 2-part rule. If you can see the defender from middle, then feel free to stealth over and go for the 1v1. Do your due dilligence (count mid attackers, confirm whether that defender has Guard on him, don’t be seen, assess whether you can actually kill the guy in a duel, etc.).
OFFENSE: … BUT IF YOU CANNNOT SEE THE NODE DEFENDER, DON’T EVEN BOTHER
BUT, if you cannot see a defender and you also count 6-7 mid, don’t even try and go for the node. Chances are good that a stealther is lurking on one of the many columns or corners of the node area just waiting to jump a hapless attacker. Because the node area is so big, it is extremely difficult to find stealthed defenders. You are of more value to your team mid than you are doing permanent reconaissance at their node.
OFFENSE: DON’T TRY AND CAP UNTIL THERE ARE LESS THAN 50 SECONDS REMAINING
How often have you seen this scenario. Your team captures the node with 1:45 left in the round. The entire enemy team rotates to the node (all 8 of them) and hammers your 2 attackers. In a frenzy, you scramble ad-hoc teams of 3-4 defenders to pour to the node. Of course they are all dead within 60 seconds, the node is back in enemy hands, and all you have done is feed points and kills and ignore mid objectives.
The solution: DON’T START YOUR CAP UNTIL THERE ARE <50 SECONDS LEFT IN THE ROUND. This means you need to also figure out how long your fight with the enemy will last. Some tankier opponents might need 30 seconds to kill. Others you can drop in 10. Know your matchups so you can time your cap.
OFFENSE: DON’T START YOUR SIDE NODE DUEL UNTIL ORB CARRIERS ARE GONE
One of the reasons it is so hard to take the Hypergate node is because defenders are actively encouraged to visit it every 30 or so seconds, bringing orbs in from mid. Unless your team is actively controlling orbs or stopping carriers, a stray carrier can really mess up your otherwise perfect 1v1 and cap. Never start a fight with a defender unless you know that enemy orb carriers will not interrupt.
DEFENSE: SAP/FLASH AND CAP
This advice is almost too basic to include in the guide, but I figure I should mention it. If you and another ally, preferably a stealther, approach a node, there is really no reason you should not cap it. Have your ally start capping it BEFORE you Sleep Dart the defender. If he cracks it, wait until your ally starts capping again before you Flashbang the lone defender. Timing is important here, especially against defenders with spammable ranged attacks with fast travel times (Pyrotechs come to mind) or charges (the interrupt happens immediately, stopping a cap).
DEFENSE: THE ONE MAN FORTRESS
A lot of my offensive advice is just cautionary and pessimistic. Time for the good stuff. I will go out and say that this is the single best map to defend on as a Scrapper. As mentioned earlier, a unique combination of factors unite to give you a huge defensive edge. First, you can see your attackers through the shield before they come. This gives you enormous advance warning in calling out incomings and preparing your position.
Second, there are tons of good hiding spots where you can still see the node and evade any enemy detection, especially by other stealthers. Remember: Offensive stealthers get to pick the time and place of their Sneak stealth level increase. That’s when they find you and catch you. Don’t be a fool and stand right on top of the node. Don’t even stand, necessarily, where you need to accumulate defense points. Your goal is to win, not farm defender medals. Hide appropriately.
Third, the long approach lets you CC attackers as they approach the node as opposed to when they are on top of it. This can buy you extra time if you need to have a node fight.
Finally, unlike in Novare, attackers have to cluster around a node to cap it. Anywhere that one attacker stands you can be virtually guaranteed to hit his fellow attackers with a single Thermal Grenade. Freighter Flyby is particularly powerful, especially if dropped directly on the node. All of these factors combine to give you an extremely potent defense on this WZ.
You know all that garbage about how Shadows are just better Scrappers? Well it isn’t true, so don’t buy into any of it….UNLESS you are playing Huttball. The song “Anything you can do I can do better” really comes to mind, because almost every single role that we might have in Huttball is something in which the Shadow can outclass us. We can stealth into the EZ, sure. But they can Resilience, Speed, and Kinetic Ward to survive incoming damage. They have knockbacks for better defensive and offensive plays. They have taunts and guard to protect the carrier. And if they are tank speccd, or respeccd at the beginning of the WZ, they gain access to the almighty Force Pull. All of our small shortcomings become glaring inadequacies in this WZ. Our offensive and defensive game lacks knockbacks. We make terrible ball carriers with bad defensive CDs and no gap closers. Our melee range is a huge problem given the amount of AOE you see in HB. To make matters worse, the ramps and ledges of this map make it impossible to stay in combat with some of our otherwise easiest targets. This is truly our worst WZ, and although we can win it and can even do well in it, we will always do worse in HB than in any other map.
OFFENSE: FOCUS HEALERS
In no other WZ is it so important for you to focus healers. For one, healers will make or break an enemy offense. Taking down a guarded, taunt-protected, tank, ball-carrying Marauder is difficult, but doable with enough focus. Taking one down who is also being healed by an enemy Operative is just not going to happen. Your job is to keep that healer otherwise occupied. You might not be able to kill your target in 30 seconds. You might not be able to kill him period if he is protected. But in keeping on him, you prevent that healer from doing the more important role: Keeping the Ball Carrier alive.
OFFENSE: AVOID SORCS AND SNIPERS
One of the worst parts about Huttball is that it turns 2 of our best matchups into pretty tough ones. Sorcs go from green to blue. Overload is annoying and, if well aimed, will completely mess up your fight. Nothing is worse than getting knocked off the highest platform down into the speed-boost pit. Sometimes you will get knocked into the dumpster down there and just feel badly. But at least with Sorcs, they have to a) aim their overload (we can avoid its cone by being mobile) and b) ignore you once you get knocked down; you are too far away to be hit. Once you get Overloaded away, the Sorc will probably just speed into the distance, but at least you aren’t constantly taking damage.
UNLIKE WITH SNIPERS. Sniper goes from a green to a red in Huttball. For one, unless the Sniper is a complete moron, it is extremely easy for him to knock you back and off of a platform. Even worse, unlike the Sorc, the Sniper knockback doesn’t have to be aimed and has a gigantic knockback distance (if talented). This makes it extremely difficult to gap close on our otherwise natural target. Making matters worse, Leg Shot keeps us at a distance while the Sniper can pick us apart. The platforms and elevation just makes it too hard to handle decent Snipers, and your efforts are better directed elsewhere (unless you know your Sniper target isn’t the most talented). If you absolutely must fight and kill these guys, just watch your angles. Keep your back facing DOWN the platform so you just get knocked back on the same level, not lower. Of course, a good Sniper will knock you down anyway, but at least you can kill the bad ones.
OFFENSE: PASS ASAP. DON’T GO FOR THE TOUCHDOWN UNLESS NECESSARY
Most classes are good on offense, although some are better than others. Sorcs are squishy, but at least have bubble, speed, and a knockback. Mars and Juggs have the awesome charge, whether to an enemy or an ally, and tons of defensive CDs. Sins are of course kings at this map. Even BHs can spec into charge and movement impairment resistance, not to mention their innate defensive CDs. SCRAPPERS, however, are terrible ball carriers. Shield Probe absorbs 3k damage (i.e. 1 single GCD of 2-3 attackers if you are lucky). Evasion grants ranged/melee immunity, but doesn’t do anything against CC, tech, or force. Sneak gives speed, but it is just worse than Force Speed or a charge. And of course, Stealthing just drops the ball. Even Snipers can use knockback and shielding to reach the endzone.
If you have the ball, your goal is to pass it as quickly as possible. Literally any other class, except maybe a healer, is a better carrier than you are. Stick to killing things. Even if you think you are good at Huttball and the game, just by virtue of our abilities, there are almost always better ball carrier options.
GENERAL: BE CAREFUL OF AOE
If you are taking down the ball carrier you need to be extra careful of AOE abilities. Players generally ignore all the Smash, Orbital Bombardment, Death From Above, and other giant damage AOEs in Huttball. Some classes, like Juggs and PTs, might be able to take that kind of punishment. We really can’t. I have seen Scrappers/Ops just sit in these AOEs eating 12k damage before getting out. Then they get noticed, focused, and killed. It’s a waste of your time and bad positioning. Avoid it by being conscious of AOEs around the carrier.
GENERAL: SAVE TENDON BLAST FOR VENT FRYING
TB is amazing on this map because it goes through resolve. Normally, that is just a hindrance, but in Huttball, that can become an insta-kill. Save your TB for those times when you need to fry someone on the vents. One of my favorite combos is kicking a ball carrier on the vent and watching him CC break. Immediately follow up with TB, stand back, and watch the fire do the work.
GENERAL: AIMING FREIGHTER FLYBY EFFECTIVELY
This ability is a monster in Huttball. You can easily hit 5 targets with a good flyby, dealing as much as 5-8k damage to EACH of them over 9 seconds. Entire offensive pushes or defensive stands can be ruined with a well-placed Flyby, and you can easily score or turn around a scoring push with just this one ability. Unfortunately, because most Scrappers recognize its value, they are also squeamish about using it. They don’t want to waste it and/or don’t want to mistarget it; nothing is more embarrassing than a Flyby with no one sitting in it. Here are a few tips aimed at helping you maximize this ability and knowing when to use it at all.
As a general rule, you almost always want to be dropping Flyby in front of fire pits. This is the only place on the map that a large group of people will stop in front of for an extended period of time. It is also the place where most of your team is likely to start using CC, so it will be even easier for you to catch enemies in the AOE. Wait until the ball carrier starts has started climbing the second ramp before channeling. By the time they reach the top of the second ramp, your channel will be done and the Flyby will begin. At that point, fire off TB/Flashbang and get everyone stuck for a moment. Your allies will descend on the clump of opponents and have a massive, laggy melee in the Flyby flames. There are, of course, exceptions to this rule, but it is a good one to have in mind generally while playing Huttball.
DEFENSE: DISAPPEARING ACT FOR THE KILL/KO
I rarely advocate using DA just to kill something, but in Huttball it is often your last line of defense before getting scored on. Use DA aggressively to pump out damage, knock your target down without filling up too much resolve, and reapply FR in a critical situation. Be judicious in its use, but know that you have this as a tool. By a similar token, ask yourself whether or not you need the DA to survive an unimportant battle. Let’s say that an enemy Marauder and Pyrotech catch you in their speed-boost pit after a failed scoring attempt. Do you really want to restealth to survive? Or would that DA be better used defensively in 45-60 seconds. Remember, a death in Huttball can often be a free ticket back to the defensive side, and you don’t want to misuse your DA when you are going to need it to kill a BC in a minute.
DEFENSE: ALWAYS STEALTH OUT OF THE SPAWN
Getting charged by a ball carrier while in the endzone platform is a sure way to make your team hate you. Avoid that by always stealthing out of your spawn when the game is in full swing. This is a great example of “Better safe than sorry”.
DEFENSE: COUNTER ENEMY STEALTHERS AND PASS INTERCEPTION[/b]
Sins especially like to sneak into the Endzone or onto the lower ledges of the speed-boost pit (in between the two fire pits) to get passes. It is your job to deal with this. Keep track of enemy stealthers and watch for pass setups. because enemy stealthers have to unstealth to catch the ball, you can often get a free SF+FR on them without them noticing your presence (even with enhanced detection levels). Moreover, the knockdown plus your sitting next to them can interfere with the HB pass and give the ball to you. The specific huttball catch algorithm is always a bit of a mystery, but in my experience, SF + knockdown on a target, plus repositioning yourself to the center of the throw, is a great way to ensure that you intercept a pass. Of course, once you get the ball you need to ditch it asap, whether grounding it or passing it to a more robust ball carrier. But your defensive role has already been fulfilled.