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13 minutes ago, thebiglez said:

There should be a designated sniper role honestly.. But to coutner lone wolfing i would make it like this:

A squad of max 2 people, one with the sniper and one with the spotter or something role.

 

Then these two people would go together and work with the team to provide info and fire support.


I still see "lone-wolfing" with certain users of the marksman kit. They might be in a squad, but tend to move independent of that squad to do their own thing. Scouting is of course encouraged but I've seen guys in the middle of nowhere trying to be Mr Badass Sniperdude who aren't relaying info, and can't hit a barn from the inside using a shotgun loaded with birdshot. They miss enough to give away their position and get eliminated, then go back and do the same thing in almost the exact same location.

Many people misunderstand the purpose and utilization of snipers and think they're meant to be lone-wolf body-slaying monsters versus their specific role in intelligence gathering with a secondary focus on eliminating high value targets or significant threats to their team.

I'm reluctant to encourage the addition of snipers because what I saw rampant in PR was whoever was fastest to load in set up a squad, grabbed a sniper and wandered off to try and see how many kills they could rack up while not really benefiting the team.

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Posted (edited)
27 minutes ago, Phoenixstorm said:

That worked well for pr and I bet that would work well for squad too.

I think you might have slightly misspelled "That didn't work in PR at all and won't work anywhere, ever." 

 

There, gotta watch out for those nasty typos, bud ;)

Edited by MultiSquid

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I've gone through the entire thread and to be perfectly honest with you guys, an AT role will still be preferred by SLs over a marksman even after the buffs. The reasons are mainly three:

  • Small maps: If you can see it and shoot a ton of bullets at it with a LMG/MMG, you don't need a marksman to pop off a measly 10 rounds on it before it gets to cover. A DMR will down 2-3 people, they will pop smoke and start reviving. A MG can suppress much better and deny the revives even when firing through smoke.
  • Community mentality: I'm not trying to ruffle feathers here, but my observation is that the standard of teamwork is magnitudes lower than what it was in PR. Most people derive their fun from individual achievement and not from acting as a team and collective achievements. Something which is further compounded by...
  • Spawning mechanics: Who needs a marksman when you can magically teleport a support fire team (AR/MG, grenadier, medic) to flanking positions around the cap with buddy rallies and have endless revives? The only thing that counts is rounds per second on target, because the time-to-move/setup/deploy variable for all infantry has been taken out of the equation.

 

I know my opinions can be unpopular or blunt at times, but if you really want marksmen, and possibly snipers, to actually be useful in the grand scheme of things, you will have to push for the game to take a direction that will essentially turn it into PR 2.0. Higher attrition, more punishing spawn mechanics and more tickets to increase the average duration of a round so that getting to a place and staying alive for extended periods of time actually matters, increased focus on combined arms experience, bigger and much more open maps with sparse cover and more emphasis on logistics, positioning, area coverage and denial, early warning, etc etc. I'm all for such a thing, but most people probably aren't.

 

Until then, the most useful thing to do as a marksman is to be a spotter for a heavy asset squad (eg mortars) or your squad's 1-man recon element, remain hidden and not fire a single shot for most of the round. See something? Call it in and maintain stealth, don't shoot. Your gun is only there to suppress/incapacitate what your SL tells you to attack and as a long-range defense/deterrent to give you enough time to get out. E.g., you see a full squad coming your way up the hill from down in the valley, tell your SL so he can deal with it, pop off a few rounds to delay them, go to a new position, stay there and hold fire again so you can provide updates to your SL while unseen. Your job is to look and tell, not to shoot, because there are other roles with can currently kill things much better and much faster than you will ever hope to achieve with your lethargic rate of fire. Your advantage is your long range, but the majority of combat happens in ranges lower than that, where other roles can shoot just as accurately and with a much higher rate of fire. Perhaps the only case where a marksman makes sense as the person who shoots first right now, is picking off crew that mans static emplacements before your squad assaults a super FOB, or similarly, taking gunners down in vehicles with exposed turrets. And for the first case, a grenadier will probably still work better. Once he's ranged, he'll keep lobbing those grenades, and also kill the medic who tries to revive the guy in the MG bunker while standing behind it, with no direct line of sight to the marksman who can't do anything about him.

 

I have no problem playing this way (stealthy support/recon), i actually like it a lot because i play games like Squad for the "cog in the machine" felling and not the "1-man killing machine" feeling. But most people don't share this taste, they want to shoot stuff first and foremost and i can understand it. Well, the thing is, we can't have it all our way, all the time. Unless/until logistics, positioning and time become more important than individual firing accuracy, every class will remain superior to the marksman in 90% of the usual engagement scenarios we see in the game, regardless of bipod availability or increased magnification scopes. Sorry to be the bearer of bad news, but unless the maps and certain mechanics change and the community mentality evolves to a new meta to adapt to them, the marksman will remain the least useful class of all in most scenarios.

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I can agree with your analysis Burningbeard.

Truth be told, marksman is a very niche role with limited advantages over standard rifleman on most maps (given their layout). Marksman are meant to excel at accurate engagement over long distances, but the maps where a marksman can be utilized to their full potential tend to be few and far between. On maps where they can make use of their range advantage, they are quite formidable. Truth be told the marksman class suffers from over-utilization in this game because folks are trying to live out their Chris Kyle fantasies.

 Your utilization of the role is pretty on-key to how snipers are utilized, as intelligence gatherers and I have no problem with playing that way as necessary. 

As for your comparison to an automatic rifleman, I still contend that there are pros to the marksman over using an AR in their stead. An AR is more for high volume fire, and tends to draw attention very well. A marksman has the luxury of potentially being far more subtle. One could make an argument for the marksman class to get suppressors, after all most marksman rifles are being equipped with suppressors and the Mk 12 SPR in PR had the option for them. I'm indifferent on adding them to Squad though.

 

 

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Even without suppressors, the marksmen kits benefit by not having tracers and having low rate of fire. AR may be able to suppress but a good marksman will put enemies down without requiring fire superiority. This makes them ideal as screening elements that can stay alive while disrupting enemy movement. Before the change marksman kits were less effective in this role than optic riflemen who had larger magazines and CQC advantage. A skilled shooter can land long range shots with an optic at the same rate or better than a DMR. The DMR bipods may tip the scales by increasing the rate of accurate fire, giving DMR the advantage in long range engagements. The tradeoff is a loss of mobility and thus survivability when fire is returned.

 

I don't understand the beef people have with "lone wolfing" marksmen. The role shines in overwatch positions and long-range shoot and scoot. The effective range of the DMR also allows for wider angle crossfire with the rest of the squad. If the enemy are between you and your marksman, that's a good thing, not a sign of poor teamplay.

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Well, what you describe is not lone wolfing. If the SL tells you to get on a hill and watch an approach to the squad's position, it's teamplay. A lot of times i see people requesting to hop off the truck early and watch a certain place and the SL tells them to go for it and gives them their own fireteam so that they can mark targets. Usually, it involves a certain degree of communication with the squad, a separation limited to a few dozen or couple hundred meters at most and the know-how to stay hidden, call out contacts and spot for the squad first and foremost, instead of engaging right away to pad personal stats.

 

What lone wolfing refers to is the guys who get the marksman kit and go to a specific place in the map that is a good perch, even if it's nowhere near to where the rest of the squad and their objectives are . A lot of times they never communicate with the rest of the squad and when they do, they ask for stuff that are irrelevant to what the rest of the squad is doing.

 

Imagine this. The SL is neck deep in the poop defending a flag, his guys around him are getting 40mm to the face from a concealed grenadier, he's trying to coordinate with his medics to pick them up, trying to find the direction of incoming fire and suppress it, trying to set up a defence with his remaining force, trying to tell other SLs he's got armor bearing down on his position and if they can hurry up and cap the next flag already, or at least sent some AT his way because his are empty and his riflemen are out of ammo bags. And what does the lone wolf do? He's 500 meters away on the other edge of the map, far away from any flag, watching a direction that does nothing for  the rest of the squad (but is a good place to catch hostiles coming out of main or a FOB), engaging anything he sees. And while all that is going down, he'll cut in on comms to request the SL to put a mark down for a techie so that he can get a range readout for his shot on the driver. I don't even SL that much (unless the original SL gets disconnected and nobody else wants to do it) and i get triggered just describing the situation xD , so of course people who've played longer have a beef with it. What separates lone wolfing from teamplay is neither the kit nor the marksman's separation from the squad. It's the lone wolf's selfish nature and his complete and utter uselessness to the rest of his squad. A 2 day old newbie running rifleman or second medic is much more useful than such a player.

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Posted (edited)
41 minutes ago, Burningbeard80 said:

What lone wolfing refers to is the guys who get the marksman kit and go to a specific place in the map that is a good perch, even if it's nowhere near to where the rest of the squad and their objectives are . A lot of times they never communicate with the rest of the squad and when they do, they ask for stuff that are irrelevant to what the rest of the squad is doing.

Yea, the thing is after 3 years SLing I have rarely come across such a player and I haven't found the marksman kit to be any more or less likely to elicit that behaviour. In my experience, players lone wolfing are usually doing so in response to a lack of coherent direction from the SL. If it's a case of them ignoring you, there's always the kick button :) 

 

I think that what many people describe as lone wolfing is just solid marksman behaviour.  When they look at the map they see a lot of marksmen off on their own. What they don't see are the wide angles the marksman is covering, the info they are relaying, and yes the downs they are getting. These can all be as important to the team and the squad as having players on the objective or an extra gun near the SL. 

One thing I've noticed is that marksmen have a tendency to survive a squad wipe. This can be because they were separate from the squad to set up a crossfire, or because the scoot and shoot nature of the weapon increases survivability. In any case, marksmen may be separated from the squad simply by staying alive. Often this puts them in useful recon positions while the enemy mobilize. If they're not relaying that info on their own initiative, all it takes is to ask them what they see and you get valuable info for the squad and the team.

 

I guess what I'm saying is the role doesn't encourage lone wolfing more than any other. The decision to ditch the squad is the player's and not the role's, so the response should be to kick the player, not lock or change the role.

Edited by pinko

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Being hidden 200m out from the flag can be quite effective. You dont need to be a marksman, a scope is enough. Ive had cases where i can more or less alone deny the enemy an access route to the flag from all the directions im covering.

But most SL:s see no point in having a marksman and doesnt give you time to get into a good position. So most of the time you are forced to just run with the squad and take whatever position available. But if you are allowed to play the role properly it is extremely effective. Both as a scout and for covering the squad. You rarely get a ton of kills but the one you get are often very important.

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You guys both describe what is a beneficial style of play. And i do agree that in general, people sometimes bunch up too much, stay too close, lose vision and then get encircled and wiped often. It's a balancing act like any other. Too close and the squad's lookout abilities suffer, too far spread out and you lose coherence and amount of firepower on any given target.

 

I'm very surprised (positively) by what pinko has said though, since in my experience the lone wolf style is something i come across quite often in the squads i join. A few days ago we had one such guy that didn't even get in the truck with the rest of us at the start of the round, he just started legging it from main, climbing the first hill he saw.

 

Our SL tried multiple times to communicate and addressed him personally, the guy still kept on ignoring him (not even a text/chat reply). About 5-10 minutes later we were finishing backcaping and building a FOB, when he realized that he was too far away from the frontline to get any kills. The SL had already kicked him from the squad by that point (so he was automatically switched to a recruit kit) and as he was catching up to us making his way down the hill, he started shooting at us intentionally.

 

It's still the player's fault and not the kit's, but it is also true that these kinds of players usually gravitate to certain kits, because they are more effective for solo play than other roles (for what they want to do at least, ie, just drop a few enemies from a safe distance in order to feel good about their K/D ratio). You said it yourself that being detached works well for the marksman, these guys just take it to the extreme and play practically alone. This makes the rest of the players wary of a role that would normally be very useful if played like you describe, and it goes on in a vicious cycle from that point on. But to be perfectly honest with you, i believe that this is not something that can be fixed by game mechanics. It depends on the rest of the squad to bring such guys into a more team focused playstyle, or kick them from the squad to deny them their precious kit.

 

I mean, if they want to play alone they can just make a squad and name it "solo marksman" or something similar, there's no reason to take up a perfectly good spot in the squad that could be filled by a better player.

 

 

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2 hours ago, Burningbeard80 said:

But to be perfectly honest with you, i believe that this is not something that can be fixed by game mechanics. It depends on the rest of the squad to bring such guys into a more team focused playstyle, or kick them from the squad to deny them their precious kit.

Pretty much. As an SL I don't expect my squad to stick together unless I tell them to, because we all have different ideas of how to play the game. That's why early and clear communication is important, especially when leading noobs. That fellow you mentioned for instance sounded new, and might have used a pointer on how to get in the vehicle. My suggestion for leading noobs is to have them shadow you and explain everything you do to them, like placing a rally or FOB, staying hidden while moving, etc. That way when you need to give them instructions later they'll know what's up.

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I've noticed most marksman players fall in to one of two camps:

1. Lone-wolfing out in the middle of nowhere trying to rack up mostly meaningless kills while not communicating enemy positions/movement to the team.

 

2. Sticking too close to the main assault element of the squad and not taking a viable overwatch position when it's prudent to do so. 


Sometimes I wish it were possible to require players to go through some kind of role-specific training before being allowed to take a kit so they at least have some idea of how to best utilize it.

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23 hours ago, MeAWarChild said:

Sometimes I wish it were possible to require players to go through some kind of role-specific training before being allowed to take a kit so they at least have some idea of how to best utilize it.

That's the SLs job. If a player is not communicating, ask them some specific questions like "what are you firing at?". Most of the time they're just new and shy with the mic or don't know what info is important. Same goes with positioning; just place a move mark and tell them where to go. Remember that they might get distracted on the way there, so if they start shooting it's "what are you shooting at?" again. This goes for all noobs, not just marksmen. The little bit of effort then pays off in later rounds after you've trained a halfway decent squad that gives callouts and has an idea of good positioning. This game is very different from other shooters, so it takes time to develop the appropriate skillset. 

 

We can't expect to have a good squad of experienced players every time we SL a public game. Lower your expectations and improve your curriculum and you can train problem players on the fly. As always, kick any griefers and trolls; they aren't worth the effort.

 

If your squad is full of noobs, play an easy objective. Take backcaps and explain the game mechanics. Play on defence and explain screening, recon, overwatch and crossfires. Create fireteams and delegate some training if you have a couple experienced players to teach the others. Play to win but also play to improve. Be patient, lest you want to raise your blood pressure like Dr Hammer on a free weekend. 

 

Edited by pinko

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