Long Watch vs. Return FireEdit
- Long Watch allows reaction shots at targets in an ally's sight radius.
- Long Watch is more useful for supporting the squad than anything else.
- As critical hits cannot be scored in overwatch outside of late game Specialists, this ability's use of squadsight has the penalties mitigated to some degree.
- Long Watch allows to activate enemy pods during the enemy turn, when the Sharpshooter is not concealed but a phantom Ranger can see the enemies.
- Squadsight aim penalties may apply.
- Return Fire allows the Sharpshooter to fire back with their pistol at an enemy that attacked them.
- Return Fire is more useful for the sharpshooter itself than it is for the squad, helping finish off enemies close to the sharpshooter rather than close to the squad. The exception to this, of course, is when the sharpshooter is together with the rest of the squad.
Deadeye vs. Lightning Hands Edit
- Deadeye trades in 25% of the sharpshooter's aim for a shot with 50% more base damage.
- Deadeye's aim penalty is 25%, not a direct -25, meaning the penalty's significance differs per target. As such, this skill is not very reliable until the drop can be compensated, but it is very powerful otherwise.
- Deadeye scales up more potently from improved equipment than Lightning Hands, due to its damage boost. It is more suited for a Sniper than a Gunslinger because of this.
- Deadeye uses up both action points, even when shooting from a weapon different from sniper rifle.
- Lightning Hands is a free pistol shot against anything within range, working well for both Snipers and Gunslingers.
- For a Sniper, Lightning Hands allows the sharpshooter to to weaken or finish off a nearby enemy before sniping them, or another target altogether.
- For a Gunslinger, Lightning Hands is far more useful than Deadeye could ever be, synergizing very well with most other Gunslinger Skills.
- Lightning Hands can be extremely useful for conserving more useful abilities for both the Sniper and the rest of the squad.
Death From Above vs. Quickdraw Edit
- Death From Above prevents the turn from ending after using your sniper rifle for the first action, if you killed someone while you're on higher elevation than the target.
- Death From Above does not allow the second action to be another shot with your sniper rifle, mitigating its usefulness, but it does allow the sniper to reposition, reload, or use their pistol if needed.
- Death From Above activates only on kills, and then only if made from higher elevation.
- Death From Above is helpful for stationary Sharpshooters as it allows them to reload after every kill, meaning that assuming they get a kill before emptying their clip, they should be able to take a shot every turn.
- Quickdraw prevents the turn from ending after using your pistol for the first action.
- Quickdraw is a staple Gunslinger ability which lets them spread their fire around to different targets or hit the same target multiple times.
- With a higher level Gunslinger it will often be more useful to move up than use Quickdraw, as the improved accuracy will often grant more likelihood of extra hits than a single extra shot due to the vast accuracy scaling of the pistol combined with Faceoff, Lightning Hands and Fan Fire's multiple shots.
- With that in mind, however, Quickdraw has no cooldown and can be quite handy in taking multiple shots while conserving the cooldowns on abilities like Lightning Hands..
Kill Zone vs. Faceoff Edit
- Kill Zone grants overwatch on a target cone, allowing reaction shots trigger on visible enemy movement or attacks made within.
- Kill Zone activates once every movement, meaning it activates once if the enemy dashes, but twice if the enemy moves twice, or moves and attacks. (Melee attacks by Stun Lancers and Chryssalids count as part of movement and only trigger one shot)
- Kill Zone's only limiting factor is the Sharpshooter's ammunition. Thus, it is more effective in conjunction with Expanded Magazine weapon mod.
- Kill Zone does not require Long Watch in order to take reaction shots against enemies in squadmates' line of sight.
- Enemies without valid target in reasonable range may run back and forth during their turn. Combine with means to provoke pods at extreme range during player's turn, Kill Zone may trigger up to three times for each enemy. Possible means included but not limited to, sniper shot from another sharpshooter, dominated Codex teleporting in and out, blaster launcher.
- Faceoff grants a pistol shot on every visible enemy
- Faceoff has no upper limit on the total amount of shots it can make, making it an excellent Gunslinger ability.
- Faceoff is an excellent way to use special ammo, due to the sheer amount of targets available.
- If used with Dragon rounds or Venom rounds, Faceoff can be an effective crowd control skill, limiting enemy actions and, in the case of Dragon rounds, stopping enemy melee attacks entirely if they burn.
Steady Hands vs. Aim Edit
- Steady Hands grants bonus Aim and Crit Chance if the sharpshooter didnt move last turn.
- Steady Hands does not take this turn's movement into account, making it useful for all sharpshooters, including mixed ones.
- Aim only affects the first shot of a turn, while Steady Hands affects all shots. Additionally, Steady Hands does not require the sharpshooter to not have made an attack last turn.
- Aim grants an Aim boost to the next shot when hunkering down
- Without the AWC, Aim requires the sharpshooter to use their last move hunkering down, meaning Gunslingers lose one potential shot that turn, or more if they were able to use Faceoff or Fan Fire.
- Snipers with Death From Above, on the other hand, can benefit from this, as they cant use their sniper rifle as the second action anyway. This also helps when using Deadeye, if necessary.
- Aim can be useful to both trees for the sake of setting up ambushes, as there's no real requirement to use all your actions yet.
Serial vs. Fan Fire Edit
- Serial returns the sharpshooter's 2 actions when they make a kill with their sniper rifle.
- Serial is very useful for snipers when they have multiple enemies in sight at low health, allowing you to take them all down.
- However, when using the skill, one should keep in mind that every kill made by the sniper effectively results in wasted experience from killing enemies.
- Gunslingers have less use for it, since it doesnt trigger on pistol kills, but it's still a potential free shot.
- Serial can activate on misses if the target was still killed due to the Stock weapon mod.
- Fan Fire grants 3 pistol shots against one enemy, effectively making it a Ranger's Rapid Fire, except for a pistol and carries a cooldown.
- Like Deadeye, Fan Fire scales up very well with upgraded equipment, since Fan Fire can potentially deal up to triple normal damage to an enemy.
- Unlike Deadeye, however, Fan Fire is a pistol skill and only requires one action point, allowing it to combo with Death From Above and Quickdraw, which makes it more viable for both full Gunslingers and mixed sets.
- Since Fan Fire shoots 3 weak shots it is not recommended to use against targets with high armour unless AP rounds or Bluescreen rounds are equipped. Bluescreen rounds can potentially deal an extra 15 points of damage to heavily armored mechanized, making this a very powerful choice.
- Fan Fire can benefit heavily from special ammo, much like Faceoff.
Builds and AWC SynergiesEdit
Internal Synergies: Sniper Side Edit
- Due to the fact that the Sniper Rifle requires both actions to fire, reloading will be a heavy burden on snipers, often making them have to skip an entire turn of combat. As such the weapon mods Expanded Clip & Auto-Loader will be invaluable to a sniper.
- As Squadsight reduces it's accuracy with distance and the Sniper Rifle gets less accurate at close ranges, a Scope weapon mod can be highly useful.
Internal Synergies: Gunslinger Side Edit
- Gunslingers can use special ammo types extremely effectively, being able to apply the effect carried by their ammo to a great number of enemies in a single turn, by, for example, using Lightning Hands, shooting normally with Quickdraw and finishing their turn with Faceoff.
Internal Synergies: Mixed Side Edit
[To Be Made...]
Advanced Warfare Synergies: Grenadier Skills Edit
- Blast Padding
- Most useful for front-line gunslingers, because long-range snipers hope to never be receiving fire anyway. But extra armor for free is never a bad thing.
- Sniper rifle only, compatible with Squadsight and Kill Zone. One of a few AWC skills that long range sniper can actually make use of.
- Demolition [Needs Confirmation]
- Suppression [Needs Confirmation]
- Holo Targeting
- Sniper rifle only.
- Volatile Mix [Needs Confirmation]
- Chain Shot
- Fires a shot with a penalty of 15 to aim. If it hits, immediately fire another shot at the target. Uses 2 ammo.
- Similar to the Ranger skill Rapid Fire, Chain Shot can only be used with the sniper rifle, and does not work with squadsight. Combining it with Death From Above makes it cost only one action, so it can be combined with Lightning Hands, Faceoff, or Fan Fire. Additionally, Steady Hands and Aim help against the aim penalty.
- Using a grenade or a heavy/powered weapon as your first action does not end the turn.
- Salvo is almost the same as Death From Above, but it also affects grenades (including rocket launchers) and lacks the elevation requirement. This works especially well with Fan Fire, Lightning Hands, and Faceoff, making it very powerful with Gunslingers and mixed sharpshooters.
- Hail of Bullets [Needs Confirmation]
- Fires a shot that deals critical damage. The target, if hit, will also take 3 additional damage from all sources. Uses 3 ammo.
- Rupture can only be used with the sniper rifle, and does not work with squadsight. Despite this, it is a very powerful ability. Combining the sniper rifle's high aim with a guaranteed critical hit and causing bonus damage from all sources is a very good way to take down bigger enemies.
Advanced Warfare Synergies: Ranger Skills Edit
- Phantom is almost detrimental to Sniper branch Sharpshooters, since it prevents Overwatch and Kill Zone from being activated as part of an ambush.
- Shadowstrike [Needs Confirmation] Would stack with already high aim and offset squadsight penalties to aim and critical chance. Also synergizes with shadowfall, the ability granted by the Alien Hunters DLC weapon, shadowkeeper.
- This soldier does not trigger overwatch or reaction fire.
- Being allowed to go up to enemies without triggering overwatch makes Shadowstep best used on the front lines, meaning gunslingers can get the most out of it. However, other types of sharpshooters can benefit from it as well, "for the occasional close encounter".
- Run And Gun
- Take an action after dashing.
- Run And Gun effectively gives the Sharpshooter a third action, making it a very useful skill for both Snipers and Gunslingers. A Sharpshooter could activate Run And Gun, move, and shoot, activate Run And Gun after a Death From Above kill to get another shot, or use it to fire three pistol shots with Quickdraw [Needs Confirmation].
- If you score one or more kills on your turn, you are granted a single bonus move.
- Implacable works very well with all types of sharpshooters, since the bonus move does not prevent you from using your sniper rifle. A skill like Lightning Hands against an enemy on low health essentially becomes a free move. Similarly, Kill Zone remains active after the bonus move if the sharpshooter killed an enemy with it the turn they activate it, and Serial allows them to reposition once in between their shots.
- Deep Cover
- If you did not attack this turn, hunker down automatically.
- A sharpshooter with Deep Cover is best off getting Aim, which activates for free if they did not attack that turn. This allows a sharpshooter to get into position by dashing, making it useful for all kinds of sharpshooters, but mostly gunslingers.
- Untouchable [Needs Confirmation]
- Rapid Fire
- Fire twice in a row at an enemy. Each shot suffers an Aim penalty of -15. There is no cooldown on this ability.
- Rapid Fire can only be used with the sniper rifle, and does not work with Squadsight. However, sniper rifles deal a lot of damage and very accurate, making this a powerful skill. Combining it with Death From Above makes it cost only one action, so it can be combined with Lightning Hands, Faceoff, or Fan Fire. Additionally, Steady Hands and Aim help against the aim penalty.
Advanced Warfare Synergies: Specialist Skills Edit
- Field Medic
- Equipped medikits have 2 extra charges.
- While the medical role is generally for a specialist, a sniper-based sharpshooter with Field Medic can support itself and other snipers in a nest very well if needed, but loses their shot in doing so, unless Death From Above can be used. Gunslingers, on the other hand, can heal and shoot on the same turn.
- If you like to have a second Medikit on a mission (to stabilise your medic for when the medic themself gets critically wounded), snipers can be sensible holders, as they don't have as many chances to use grenades or other utility items, with the exception of ammunition items.
- Covering Fire
- Overwatch shots can now be triggered by enemy actions, not just movement.
- Covering Fire can be invaluable for Sniper-based sharpshooters, allowing a wider range of actions to be used against the target.
- Ever Vigilant
- Activates Overwatch automatically at the end of the player's turn, if the soldier has dashed (spent both actions on movement)
- The Sharpshooter will have a sniper rifle Overwatch at the end of the turn, allowing for quick repositioning, provided they dash.
- Pistol overwatch only. Does not work with sniper rifle Overwatch.
Other Skills Edit
- Lightning Reflexes
- Each turn, the first reaction shot against you misses
- Despite not being a class skill, Lightning Reflexes can be gained from the AWC. This skill is best used on the front lines, meaning gunslingers can get the most out of it. However, other types of sharpshooters can benefit from it as well, "for the occasional close encounter".