Just some general tips for anyone who is interested in the Recon class.
Recon Class Tips
As someone who has a love for playing the sniper class in most games, I figured I’d list some things to keep in mind when you’re playing the Recon class that might help you out.
- First, and this should be obvious: try to actually help your team. I know, it’s fun and satisfying to dome an enemy sniper from half a klick out, but it’s arguably more satisfying to take out a pair of supports that have a killzone set up blocking your team’s advance onto an objective. That said, there’s nothing wrong with counter-sniping enemies that are just laying on a hill just outside their spawn area, but try not to waste too much time on them. They’ll just keep respawning, and all you’ve done is give them a target.
- Think of all the places you’re used to seeing snipers in movies and video games. Hilltops, roofs, hidden in the trees, etc. These are the places that EVERYONE is going to be checking for snipers. Therefore, it’s probably a good idea to find somewhere a little less obvious if you can. Tucking back inside of a room in a taller building is a good way to give yourself some cover, limiting where enemies can spot you from, and still give you a good firing position. Placing yourself partway down a hill rather than right on top of it means you’re not silhouetting yourself against the horizon, meaning you don’t stick out against the sky or whatever backdrop is behind you. A good tip is to use loop holes: bring a pickaxe, and make small holes low down in a wall, then back up from them as far as you can without sacrificing sightlines. Now, it’s harder for other snipers to fit a bullet through that hole, especially at distances where bullet drop starts to matter, but you can fire through just fine.
- On the same note of staying hidden, don’t do what I’ve seen some people do and place the sniper decoys near your firing position. Put your decoys in those obvious spots like the tops of hills or on rooftops, and keep an eye out for anyone who takes shots at it. Muzzle flash is a great way to spot someone shooting at your decoy. Side note, I’m almost 100% sure the Binocular gadgets don’t give off a scope glint, making them excellent for spotting your targets before you take your shot, to minimize the chances of scope glint giving you away.
- Binoculars don’t have rangefinders on them, sadly – at least, not the ones the Recon can get. Only the Bino SOFLAM that the Squad Leader class gets can rangefind (strange, I know). So if you’re not comfortable with estimating range in this game yet, you’ll have to unlock the rangefinder attachment on your rifle of choice to know your distance to your target. Left Alt is the default key for adjusting your zero, so hold it down and use your mouse wheel to scroll up and down to the appropriate range if you have the time or aren’t comfortable with holdovers. If your target is at a distance in-between zeros, I suggest using the lower zero and just aiming a tad high. And remember, firing upwards means your bullet will drop a little faster; the opposite is true shooting at a downward angle. You might need to hold a little higher or more level depending on if you’re shooting at an angle; usually not much, but like usual it gets worse with distance.
- If you have a microphone, use B (default for Squad VOIP) to radio to your squadmates where you see enemies, and use MMB (default ping) to point them out. Recon may be the sniper class, but providing information is another strength you have thanks to your high-zoom optics and access to binos. If nothing else, just ping around where you see enemies and hope someone sees and gets the right idea.
- Bullet Velocity is a big thing for any sniper rifle in any game, and luckily in BattleBit, there are some pretty fast velocities. This means leading your shot is easier than in similar games with bullet travel time. I was surprised just how little I had to lead at some distances to score a hit on a moving target. The higher the velocity, the less you have to lead, and usually the flatter the trajectory of your bullet as well. Just be warned that some of the barrel attachments that increase bullet velocity also drastically alter the other stats of your weapon.
- Personally, I don’t see a huge impact as far as Control goes for sniper rifles. Because of this, I don’t mind dumping that stat in order to get other bonuses. I typically like to use Bolt Action D (the highest I have unlocked on my favorite sniper rn) because it makes the bolt cycle speed slightly faster, and it automatically cycles the bolt without you having to leave ADS – great for follow up shots. Because of this, I also like to bring something like the Stubby or Vertical Grip to minimize vertical recoil. If my first shot doesn’t hit, I can at least get back on target faster to try and get off my second shot. Also very useful for if you spot several enemies who are blissfully unaware of your location, giving you a better chance of taking out more than one before they start panicking and rushing to cover. Side Tip: personally, I hate bipods in this game, because every weapon that can use one feels totally useless unless you’re actively supported. I like to play fairly aggressive and stay on the move even as a sniper, so I like to have the ability to fire unsupported if I have to.
- Make sure you bring a sidearm you can count on. Your rifle is essentially useless up-close, one missed shot and you’re dead, so getting good with your handgun is critical for the inevitable moments when you find yourself much closer than you’d like with an enemy rifleman. You’re still outgunned, but if you can squeeze off a headshot or two, you just might survive. Rushing at them will get you killed, so if you can, try to break line of sight and circle behind them. Tossing a frag at your feet as you run around a corner can sometimes catch them off guard, either killing them outright or injuring/distracting them long enough to give you the upper hand.
- Mines and Claymores are nice to use if you’re more of the “stay in one position” sniper, but C4 is also a nice tool to have. You can try to sneak up on armored vehicles or drop it on them from above, rig a stairway to explode to make it harder for enemies to sneak up on you, or just blast yourself an escape route if the building you’re in is getting hammered by machine gun fire. But if you still prefer Mines and Claymores, I recommend thinking carefully about their placement. Mines in the middle of a doorway are easy to spot; try putting them just to the side instead. Claymores are usually pretty easy to see in buildings thanks to those wires, but if you can get them to stick to the floor instead of up on the wall, some players won’t notice the lower wires until they get blown up. And if nothing else, you can just drop either of these around random corners, be it inside or outside of buildings, and hope for the best. Most people tend to hug a wall rather than run in the open street, so laying your trap in these areas can be a cheeky way to pick up a kill here and there.
- Character Customization in this game is actually impactful on your character in ways other than just looks. At different levels, you’ll start to unlock new headgear, chest rigs/plate carriers, backpacks, and belts, which impact your movement speed, aiming speed, the equipment you can carry, etc. If you really like mines, you’ll want to equip items that increase your Primary Gadget count. If you use the Grappling Hook all the time, that’s Secondary Gadget. For the most part, this is bigger for other classes, but it can be useful for Recon as well. Arguably as important is how your character actually looks. It can be useful to pick headgear and a uniform that use as much of the camo color you have selected as possible, to blend in as much as you realistically can in this game. If you can, try to pick a camo that matches best where you plan to be sniping from – darker green if you’ll be staying in the grass, sandy color if you’ll be firing from windows in buildings, etc. It’s probably minor, but I definitely feel like I get spotted less doing this, and sometimes thinking sneaky can make you sneakier.
This last tip I’m somewhat reluctant to give out, but here goes: ever since Battlefield 4, I’ve been a huge fan of using the Medium Range sights instead of actual scopes. Why? Well, besides the better peripheral vision and easier medium-range engagement capability, and that my eyesight is generally good enough that I can compete with long-range scope users even at 500+ meters, I really like not having a scope glint.
The main thing that tips someone off to having a sniper’s crosshairs trained on them is that white flare in the corner of their screen – that, or the bullet that just whizzed past them and splattered their buddy’s melon all over the adjacent wall.
Getting rid of that glint is a massive benefit to going undetected for as long as possible. Between that and a flash hider, or even suppressor if you’re so inclined, I’ve found it’s far easier to be able to harass and pick off enemies without them being able to find where I’m hiding at.
Now, in BF4, it was a lot harder to see someone at range compared to in BattleBit, but I’m still firm in my belief that if you use a medium-range sight over a long-range sight, it’s harder to spot you once you’re in position and engaging targets. With muzzle flash mitigated as well, all anyone can really do to find you is trace where your rounds are coming from, or spot the little movements you make dipping in and out of cover/concealment.
Well, hopefully something I had to share was of help to you. I was hesitant to make this because I figure most people who like to use sniper rifles in games probably know a lot of this stuff – and also because I don’t want to give away all my secrets of course – but then I figured that what seems common knowledge to me might be entirely new information to someone else, especially someone who’s new to the Recon class and wants to get into sniping.