Heavies. Why?


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#1 McNtr

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Posted 02 November 2012 - 10:50 AM

Does anyone else think the new XComs heavies are the pendant of the original's Floaters?

To me, every other class looks so much better and stronger....

The Assault - I'm really fond of these, they have to get up close but they have quite a punch. A pair of these can easily kill a sectopod with close range rapid fire. On near every level they get great abilities to help with offense or defense. Nothing like two Assaults with Close Combat Specialist on guard beside a door - had a whole trio of Chryssalids killed on the alien turn once during a terror mission.

The Sniper - Awesome too. While there are Ranks where the promotion gets you kind of rubbish/not so good abilities (Sergeant/Lieutenant) they have some of the most powerful ones, too. Squad Sight/in the Zone combo can mop up everything up to mutons.

The Support - while not so great for killing things, they are fast, they can heal, and carry two pieces of equipment. Their smoke grenade also helps, especially nice when you take the combat drug variant and want to play with PSI or defend against these pesty Etherals.

And then the Heavy... His aim is soo bad, he can't hit a thing. He's slow and that rocket so short ranged that he can't even fire it most of the time. And the skills?

The rocket - see above
Bullet swarm - miss twice as often / Halo targetting - now this is okay
Shredder - yet another rocket you can't fire / Suppression - can be done by Supports
HEAT Ammo - would be nice, if they aim to actually HIT anything

The rest of the abilities are on the okay side, though I have quite a hard time to decide which ones I should take. Might be I just don't play the Heavy right, but when I look at the other classes they are just so much better in my eyes. Since I also tend to hesitate to blow things up in Ufos, I found myself to use 2 of each other classes and leave the Heavy at home.

#2 Sorbicol

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Posted 02 November 2012 - 11:51 AM

Heavies ate my "front line" troops to be honest. They hold the line while assaults flank, supports - well support - and snipers hold back and get the head shots in. Their rockets I use for emergencies, destroying cover (which a lot of people seem to forget about) and suppression. I find heat ammo to be absolutely critical for taking down Cyberdisks too.

I've had no issues with them hitting anything too - in fact I often find them to be the most accurate of my close range troops. You just have to give a bit of thought to lanes of fire if you think missiles are going to be required. There aren't that many maps where I find I can't hit something with a missile if I really need to.

So basically I think I disagree. What difficultly level are you playing on?

#3 7h30n

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Posted 02 November 2012 - 12:02 PM

Hmm, I always bring 2 Heavies with me on a mission. I guess I prefer explosive solutions :D
On the other hand I think Assaults are useless. Shotguns are so short ranged you need to come up close and personal which is carries a great risk of activating another spawn or 2 and that comes at a too great cost.

I keep one Assault just for finishing off the last enemy with Run 'n Gun up to his face and rapid firing that bugger!


Just finished a UFO crashed mission by shooting 2 rockets inside a UFO to open up my line of fire for the sniper because what was inside the UFO was to dangerous to be fought head on. Love my heavies! One of them is even fully developed psi soldier and hits 100% with psi attacks which is a nice sub for his primary attack.
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#4 AlanatXcomHQ

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Posted 02 November 2012 - 12:36 PM

A solid tactic I have is to always bring 2 heavies, 2 medics and 2 snipers and then pair off into 2 groups of 3 (1 Heavy, 1 Medic and 1 Sniper). Assaults are practically useless and I don't usually see a point in using them to be honest.
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#5 Sunflash

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Posted 02 November 2012 - 04:31 PM

Gotta disagree with ya, I love my heavy; but not for rockets(btw, My rockets are hitting that 90% chance pretty nicely, don't know what you're talking about).

Bullet Swarm vs Holo-target is always a hard choice. Sure, the Heavies tend to have horrible long-to-mid range accuracy, but being able to shoot then supress in the same round is pretty nice. Personally I prefer Holo-target since it works even if you miss the target; but to each their own.

Regardless of those options, Supression is the way to go for a single heavy. Shredder is nice, but only if you've got a second heavy to take the supression line. Why? Holo target, for starters, works with supression. Anything supressed(short of beserkers) will generally be smart enough to not try to move, and the -30 aim is pretty nice. Also, the supression effect is never dodgeable or misses or anything. You decide to supress someone, they're supressed, end of story.

Heat ammo is pretty cool, though I tend to use rapid reaction more than heat simply because I prefer more chances to shoot things. Either one of these will work okay.

However, Captain rank's Danger Zone is the pay off point. Suddenly your Supression is affecting +2 tiles, which can usually end up covering at least two different aliens. That's two aliens with the -30 penalty to Aim.

Keep cracking to Mayhem at Colonel level, and suddenly you've got the capstone. See, Mayhem adds 'bonus damage' to rockets /and supression/. This bonus damage stacks with the AoE effect of Danger zone, and Holotarget's bonus. This bonus damage isn't too much,but the damage does the same thign the actual supress effect does: It NEVER. EVER. MISSES. Combine Heat Ammo with a laser or plasma gun and supress a Cybersdisk when its little Drones are nearby it?Bam, the drones are dead.

Yes, Supports can use the basic supression(which I abuse so badly), but they don't get the +bonus to-hit for everyone else, or the expanded AoE for supression, OR the unavoidable damage of Mayhem.



This should all be read knowing that my preferred team is one Heavy, one Sniper, two Assaults, and two Supports. So I tend to buck the trend around here, apparently.

#6 ñΩxicity

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Posted 02 November 2012 - 06:29 PM

2 Snipers, 2 Assualt, 1 Heavy, 1 Support, 1 Magic Bus.
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#7 silencer_pl

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Posted 02 November 2012 - 10:09 PM

3 assaults, 1 sniper, 1 support, 1 heavy.
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#8 Ki-tat Chung

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Posted 03 November 2012 - 12:17 PM

View PostNoXTheRoXStaR, on 02 November 2012 - 06:29 PM, said:

2 Snipers, 2 Assualt, 1 Heavy, 1 Support, 1 Magic Bus.

Ditto, minus the magic bus Posted Image

Except right now I'm sitting at constant three rookies, and a rotating vet. Most of my squad keeps getting wiped out... gotta stop playing so aggressively, still not used to the change in difficulty moving up from normal Posted Image
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#9 ricardo440

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Posted 04 November 2012 - 09:46 AM

I thought heavies sucked my first play through. The second I loved them. Once I realised that Blaster Bombs can shoot around corners I was no longer scared of sectopods.

I give my heavies a SCOPE. suppresive fire works ok too. Usually take 1 on a mission, but increase it to 2 if Sectopods are listed on the enemies by the hyperwave scanner.

Think an etherial or sectopod is round the corner? Send in 2 blaster bombs first! It will also blow out all the walls so everyone else can shoot too without moving.

#10 Alan

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Posted 04 November 2012 - 10:58 AM

View Postricardo440, on 04 November 2012 - 09:46 AM, said:

Once I realised that Blaster Bombs can shoot around corners I was no longer scared of sectopods.
*snip*
I give my heavies a SCOPE.
*snip*
Think an etherial or sectopod is round the corner? Send in 2 blaster bombs first!

This is pretty much what I think heavies are for. Sure they can't hit the blind side of a barn (according to the ini files they get the leave accuracy boost per promotion), but when they've leveled up enough for heat ammo and burst fire, then you have a unit which with the right kit has the potential to dismantle any robotic unit in a single turn.

I usually play with 2 support, 2 assault, 1 heavy and 1 sniper, but I've started playing around with my squad selection lately, somewhat prompted by which ones haven't reached colonel yet, and so I've had some rather odd combinations.

I've played a couple of missions with 3 support, 2 snipers and 1 shiv... which kinda works, but I keep getting the feeling that the squad is somehow weaker. The supports make good sniper scouts with their plus three move (I wonder what would happen if I put them in skelleton suits with that's move bonus as well...), and are decent enough front line infantry when they have a good rifle... but they lack stopping power. If I run into a beserker, then I need all three supports to actually have a chance to down it, rather than the usual double-tap from an assault which I would have otherwise used.
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#11 silencer_pl

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Posted 04 November 2012 - 11:55 AM

I am still wondering - HEAT ammo in plasma gun and laser gun. Will someone enlighten me how can it work ?

I am happy when my Heavy with bullet swarm kills that sectopod. I am really amazed with the damage.
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#12 McNtr

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Posted 04 November 2012 - 05:05 PM

View PostSorbicol, on 02 November 2012 - 11:51 AM, said:

So basically I think I disagree. What difficultly level are you playing on?

I just finished it on Normal.

View PostSunflash, on 02 November 2012 - 04:31 PM, said:

Gotta disagree with ya, I love my heavy; but not for rockets(btw, My rockets are hitting that 90% chance pretty nicely, don't know what you're talking about).

The problem is not the rocket missing - every rocket (and grenade) I shot/threw actually hit. The problem is, their range is simply too low - most of the time, I just cannot move the blast circle up to the alien. Combine that with the rather slow heavy (not quite sure if they are slower than say, a sniper, though) and add in the fact that they can't move when they want to fire a rocket, thats kind of bad.

Might be just my play style, but I tend to progress rather fast, most of the time going as far as possible without dashing.

#13 Sorbicol

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Posted 04 November 2012 - 06:32 PM

On classic rockets are essential for clearing out those pockets of 3 chrysalids scuttling towards your squad mate.

#14 Space Voyager

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Posted 05 November 2012 - 08:42 AM

View PostMcNtr, on 02 November 2012 - 10:50 AM, said:

And then the Heavy... His aim is soo bad, he can't hit a thing. He's slow and that rocket so short ranged that he can't even fire it most of the time.

In a way I feel your pain. Perhaps this is the reason I started equipping them with SCOPE... I felt that the increased accuracy adds more than a double grenade.

#15 FullAuto

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Posted 05 November 2012 - 12:02 PM

If they don't suit your play style, then I can see how you won't like them.  I'm not especially fond of the Assault class, but they do have their uses.

Heavies suit the way I play because I tend to move incrementally, which means they can usually lay down plenty of reaction fire, and get rockets away on the next turn.  Early on, they're absolutely indispensable for terror missions (rockets versus groups of aliens, especially Chryssalids and zombies). If your worry is accuracy, then SCOPEs and the Holo-Targeting perk work wonders.  I'm finding them absolutely invaluable versus Sectopods on Classic and Impossible (second only to Snipers using Headshot) with the added bonus that a Shredder rocket plus HEAT perk means 8 damage and 1-2 Drones killed and 33% more damage from follow-up attacks.

Bullet Swarm is a great perk, it's a little limited early on but as soon as you have ammo conservation your heavies can go absolutely nuts and deal out two shots per turn for four turns (IIRC?) and there really isn't anything that can stand up to that kind of fire.  The later perks, as Sunflash detailed, have great potential to ruin a lot of aliens' chances, even if it's primarily from a supporting fire role.  When you're suppressing 2-3 muton elites, you're a happy powersuited bunny.

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#16 Fishfins

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Posted 06 November 2012 - 10:27 PM

I usually have one Heavy per squad. Mine tend to get fairly abysmal hit chances, but Halo Targeting is a godsend if I run into a sectopod, berserker or aliens cowering behind cover. Rockets are handy for clearing away pesky drones or softening up cryssies.

Had a lot of fun giving one of my Heavies a heavy plasma, ghost armor and Bullet Swarm. Cloak him up, send him sprinting right next to an alien, then when the turn ends he has this unfair double-whammy that can cripple a sectopod.

#17 Ulzgoroth

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Posted 07 November 2012 - 01:05 AM

Heavies can be of mixed value...bullet storm and holo targetting either way can be really good, but even with a scope accuracy sometimes hurts.  Though Bullet Storm is a real lifesaver when you find yourself closely engaged by more aliens than you have troopers...

However, they have almost all the best abilities for taking out big tough enemies.  HEAT ammo and shredder rocket (and bullet storm or holo target) are all great against sectopods, where you desperately need to do vast amounts of damage very fast.  (The one major mech-killer they don't offer is Disabling Shot of course.)

I've heard about people throwing around rockets to strip cover from aliens for easy killing, particularly with the help of an In The Zone sniper.  I tend not to do that and to reserve my rockets as panic buttons and for big damage on big enemies, which of course means I take a lot of rockets home with me unfired.

#18 ricardo440

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Posted 07 November 2012 - 07:03 AM

in addition to sectopods etc... In my second play through the 2 heavies I took made the final room much much easier. Blaster Bombs for the win.

#19 Knan

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Posted 07 November 2012 - 04:12 PM

Hey, missing with a heavy plasma is also pretty good for taking out cover. :)

#20 Pete

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Posted 25 November 2012 - 08:42 PM

I hated Heavies first playthrough, but they are worth it when you have the Heavy Plasma and the Blaster Launcher, especially if you hand them a Scope and give them the extra rocket ability :)

I know you don't get fragments when you blow the enemy up, but by the time you have late game weapons it's less of an issue and if something's not going your way then blowing the enemy up is a satisfying fall-back plan sometimes.

My squad at present is 1 Sniper, 2 Heavies, 2 Support and 1 Assault (think he gets the Alloy Cannon, another neat gun).

It takes a while to work out certain class' strengths and weaknesses, but they are all generally pretty well-rounded and can be used effectively in different ways.
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