NOTE! I did not create this guide. I only recovered it from my colossal cache on my desktop. The original, named poster deserves all of the credit. [hr] Before reading warnings: These are my opinions of how to play the class efficiently. I do and am not saying that this is the one and only way of playing if you see something wrong either with how I've organized this or with the build feel free to comment. This is mainly for a well balanced build for the class Marksman and will not cover any sort of hybrid build (because I don't really think it makes perfect sense with their tier 3 abilities being as strong as they are). I am also aware that there are probably plenty of "point of view" issues and grammatical errors. I look forward to your responses and yes. This is a wall of text. You have been warned. -Lock Marksman Guide: Overview: Marksman in general is a heavily energy dependant support class in NOTD. The thing that sets Marksman apart from the rest of the NOTD universe though is its ability to quickly inflict large amounts damage at long range over the course of a couple seconds. General Tactics: Due to the Marksman’s lower base movement speed and health it is best for a Marksman to be in the mid to rear portion for the team while moving. This allows for the marksman to stay out of harm’s way and concentrate on picking out targets to shoot at and kill with their weapon of choice the Sniper Rifle and Barrett. Also be aware that Marksman has a class specific ability called “Quick Aim” available as soon as you start. This ability is great for helping with crowd control since it increases your firing speed of all weapons for a short amount of time, but it also burns through ammunition and energy at an exponential rate so planning when to use this ability is a must. Nothing hurts more than triggering this ability right as your begin reloading. When the team needs to move from place to place it is very important to note that the Marksman is considered a “Light Class” in NOTD and so must be aware of how many clips of ammunition he/she is carrying in order to stay as mobile as possible. Also it is important to remember that “Hold Fire” gives a bonus to movement speed like it does with all other classes. These two factors if micromanaged correctly allow the Marksman to travel just as fast if not faster than the other players in the team. Finally energy management is crucial for both skill trees within Marksman. Knowing when to fire off abilities at high profile enemies or when to sprint versus using Subtlety’s “Shadow Step” allows for the Marksman’s energy to be used to its fullest potential. Stat Point Allocation: Like most other classes additional points into Intelligence helps Marksman keep up with the constant energy requirements of a game along with the chance of a bonus ability point, which can be the scale tipping boost in damage a team needs to easily conquer a boss instead of losing a player or two due to the extra time a boss had to fire off its abilities. Other than Intelligence it comes down to player preference. Some Marksmen like to put points into Agility to assist with movement speed and reload speed, while others prefer Strength or Endurance for extra health and regeneration to compensate for their low amounts of health or even Perception which increases their already large sight range, gives the ability to detect invisibility, and a small boost to critical chance. Build Notes: These are my opinions on a well rounded Marksman build. Skills can and should be changed depending on what is going on during that particular game. It is important to experiment with ability builds and find the one that works best for you and fits the strengths and compliments the weaknesses for your play style for the best effects and experience of Marksman. Assassination Specialization of Marksman: Level 0: Monofilament Round (Mono): Rank 1 Reasoning: During the early portions of any storyline there is usually a large amount of basic zombies and ghouls that will appear in clusters and lines. Monofilament Rounds can be put to good use killing or greatly wounding these spawns and help the team conserve ammunition along with leveling up the Marksman. Level 1: Monofilament Round (Mono): Rank 2 Reasoning: Upgrading this skill instead of going for three levels of critical strike can save the Marksman later on by providing a decent stun along with modest damage to the masses later on. Level 2: Critical Strike: Rank 1 Reasoning: This ability effects all basic weapons a Marksman can equip allowing for greater weapon based damage per second. Unique to the Marksman this skill also factors into One Shot One Kill and can be essential for taking down bigger targets when it does activate. Level 3: Critical Strike: Rank 2 Level 4: One Shot One Kill (OSOK): Rank 1 Reasoning: This is the signature move of Marksmen everywhere. A heavy burst of damage at maximum range it is essential to max this skill as soon as humanly possible. Level 5: One Shot One Kill (OSOK): Rank 2 Level 6: Anticipation: Rank 1 Reasoning: This ability increases the damage of the entire team when attacking units at range, which can greatly assist with keeping enemies at range. This ability also stacks with One Shot One Kill allowing for even greater damage at larger ranges. The only reason to get this before One Shot One Kill would be if the team is having an extremely hard time with regular masses and needs to be able to take them down faster. Level 7: Anticipation: Rank 2 Level 8: Master Marksman: Rank 1 Reasoning: This increases the damage of One Shot One Kill again, which in turn increases the damage done by Anticipation and Critical Strike. It also allows for regular attacks to stun enemies for a short duration when they are at long distances. If micromanaged correctly this passive buff can be used to save allies or conserve energy my allowing your regular attack to kill an enemy rather than a One Shot One Kill. Tactics for Monofilament Round: This ability does friendly fire and will stun allies. That being said the stun can cause Recon classes to break cloak and/or will prevent allies from being able to run away from a wave of zombies. It is imperative that any Marksman takes the time to calculate the risks of firing Monofilament Rounds through an ally to hit an enemy. When to fire Monofilament Rounds through an ally: - When the vast majority of the team has been hugged by “Huggers”. The stun will break the “Hugged” effect on whoever it is hugging as long as the “Hugger” is stunned as well. When not to fire Monofilament Rounds through an ally: - When you will only hit two to three enemies. - When any teammate in the line of fire is low health. - When a teammate could easily be overwhelmed by other enemies near him because of the stun effect. Tips to avoid hitting allies with Monofilament Rounds: - When firing the shot LOOK BEFORE YOU FIRE (AKA AIM!). - If running away from a mob of enemies run back behind the last person on your team and fire the shot. This shot is not meant to kill as much as stun enemies pursuing the team. - Move to the out edges of the teams position and fire shots. Target priority for One Shot One Kill: This really comes down to how your team is doing. Generally shoot this at anything bigger than the Marksman. Specifically fire this ability off at any high profile target (Agrons, Stalkers, Slashers, Devourers, and Bosses) that are a threat to teammates. It is also important though to allow teammates to get these kills when they can because high profile targets give large amounts of experience. One Shot One Kill can also be used to maim targets. Doing this will cut the ammunition required to kill a target greatly, and also allow your team to get the experience of the kill. When to One Shot One Kill: - If a teammate is getting mauled. - During any boss fire (Except for the Green version of Erebos). - If the team is preoccupied with other things (Example: The team is dealing with Easy Companies Mutalisk Wave and an Agron starts walking up the ramp. Target priority in Starcraft 2 has it so units will continue attacking an enemy until A) it is dead or B) it moves outside of your sight range. During the Air Wave these Agrons can soak up sniper shots from your teammates if they allow their unit to auto attack and can cause the Mutalisks to overwhelm you). When Not to One Shot One Kill: - If your Marksman has their T3 already and the team does not. - If the target is low profile like a Ghoul or a regular unarmored Zombie. - To kill steal if you don’t need the experience. Ideal Equipment for an Assassination Marksman: - Weapons: Early levels (0-5) it is recommended that a Marksman uses a Gauss Rifle since they can use all abilities with a Gauss rifle except for One Shot One Kill. Then as the team moves forward to the later stages of the game a Marksman will rely more and more on Snipers and Barrett’s for their ability to One Shot One Kill high profile targets. Depending on story line and team composition it may also be wise to hold onto a Gauss Rifle or SMG to help with Crowd control if needed. - Armor: Marksman is on the lower end of the priority meter for Armor upgrades. Depending on how good a Marksman is they might consider using C2 armor if there is a spare or simply going without to capitalize on movement speed. - Suit and Ammunition Mods: Because One Shot One Kill does stack with Ammunition modifications they often are the first to get Armor Piercing, Hollow Point, and Full Metal Jacket mods. Other useful equipment to have available are, Ocular Implants, Thermal Sights, Ammunition Boxes, or if possible Arc Reactors. Subtlety Specialization for Marksman: Level 0: Concentration: Rank 1 Level 1: Concentration: Rank 2 Level 2: Concentration: Rank 3 Reasoning: This is your earliest primary damage ability increasing damage output of your weapon by 60% when maxed. This opposed to the sight range provided by Ranks 2 and 3 of Scope do not compensate for the lack of damage. Level 3: Scope: Rank 1 Reasoning: This provides a short range cone vision allowing you to see over obstacles and onto ledges. This can help both in speed leveling a Subtlety Marksman (By looking onto inaccessible areas and killing the spawns there) and adding survivability by looking around terrain that blocks vision. Levels 4-7: Cloak and Shadowstep Ranks 1 and 2 of each: Reasoning: These abilities are meshed together based on the fact that it comes down to how the current game is doing. Some players will choose Cloak before Shadowstep to allow them extra mobility and the ability to stand and do extra dps to a target when most “squishly” or lightly armored classes would have to run away. While others prefer to capitalize on two levels into Shadowstep in increase movement speed of the entire team allowing for faster scouting and supply gathering. A third build is to simply get one of each allowing the Marksman to do both, but not be the best at either until later on. Once a Subtlety Marksman is able to max both of these abilities though very little will be able to see or touch them. Level 8: Master of Subtlety: Rank 1 Reasoning: This is the ability that unlocks massive damage potential for a Subtlety specialized Marksman. Adding a +50% damage while cloaked. Tactics for Concentration: This is your strongest passive damage ability, but to balance it the ability runs on a cache of points you build up out of combat (you not firing a shot for a specific amount of time). In early levels use this plus “Quick Aim” to burst down heavy targets. Also to avoid wasting Concentration while running around “Hold Fire” is great and can even be used to build up Concentration. (Example: A minute before Mutalisk wave starts hold fire so that you can build a full bank of Concentration to one shot them and protect the team). Tactics for Cloak: Until you attain your Tier 3 ability this can be seen as one of the most selfish abilities in the game. While scouting though this ability can be invaluable allowing you to dodge and avoid things that would lock down other players such as mutalisks or huggers. One thing to note though is that this ability is not the same as the Recon’s self cloak and requires constant micromanagement of triggering the ability to avoid enemies. With a cool down of 12 second and a time limit of 13 seconds it is possible to stay cloaked, but it is always important to consider if you really do need cloak to avoid the zombies around you or if you can simply juke around them and run without it. Tactics for Shadowstep: Also known as a speed hack you are allowed to run 300% faster when triggered. There are two major things to note here. This ability not only speeds up any teammate you pass by allowing for faster movement through the map, but since it is 300% based on your movement speed at the time it allows you to stack abilities. To attain maximum speed using “Hold Fire” then sprinting and then triggering Shadow Step allows you to cover the maps length in seconds. Again though shadow step should not constantly be triggered to get away from anything. Conserving energy my only using “Hold Fire” and sprinting allows you to get away from the vast majority of enemies and consumes half the energy of one Shadowstep. Sprinting and triggering Shadowstep is three times the cost of simply using sprint and hold fire simple energy regeneration will have you most of the way to full by the time sprint wears off. In combat Shadowstep can be used mainly to speed up teammates and to again get a couple more shots off before running way. Due to its increased speed you are able to do less time running and more time shooting. Tactics for Master of Subtlety: This ability is made more available if a Mobility Recon with “Escape” is on the team. If lacking a Mobility Recon it is extremely important to capitalize on the time you have cloaked micromanaging which target to use your 50% damage bonus on. Ideal Equipment for an Subtlety Marksman: - Weapons: Like the Assassination Specialization using a Gauss rifle during the early portions of most stories to gain experience faster and dish out more damage. Later on Subtlety specialization Marksmen convert over to slow firing weapons like Snipers and Barrett’s to get the most from Concentration and not to burn through it as fast. Paired with Tier 3 and Concentration Subtlety Marksmen also have used Stingers a lot for a quick burst of greater than normal Area of Effect damage. - Armor: Because of the extra mobility of Subtlety it is recommended more than Assassination to get at least a C2 armor. If out scout the added armor bonus no matter how small can be the difference between life and death. - Suit and Ammunition Mods: Very little differs between Assassination and Subtlety Marksmen in this category. The extra damage provided by Armor Piercing, Hollow Point, and Full Metal Jacket rounds helps them both out. Ocular Implants are not needed as much due to Subtleties “Scope ability, but a Arc Reactor will go a long way when the Marksman gets his Tier 3 due to his constant need to spam cloak. Weapon Modifications: This also comes down to play style as well. Increasing Attack Speed and Damage should be priority if possible and reload speed. Due to the high cost of weapon modifications though these are NOT a requirement to play Marksmen or any other class efficiently. Storyline and Difficulty specific notes: Apollo Security: Because everyone starts with a pistol in this story a Marksman will need to get a sniper rifle as soon as he can to help increase his range and decrease ammo consumption. Monofilament Rounds go a lot further in this story due to its low level requirement, extra damage to massive units, area of effect, and low energy requirement. The hold out team (B) specifically can use this when dealing with the incoming spawns while they wait for rescue. Difficulty: As Squad Rating (-sr) Nightmare Mode (-nm) and Veteran Mode (500exp+) ammunition becomes more scarce and it becomes more important for a Marksman to concentrate on focusing their damage on high health monsters and saving the team ammo.