sniping guide

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sniping guide

Postby FuriousFred » 19 Apr 2009, 07:41

Part I - Concealment:

We all know this is key to survival in the bush, but did we all know that sometimes it is better to stand in front of a tree than behind it? Take 'Battery' map as an example. Consider those rocky outcrops in the ocean where people like to snipe from. Most players like to stand behind them and expose as little as possible to prying enemy eyes (usually axis can only see a small head poking out from their rmountaintop vantagepoint. However, because of the oceans mid blue color and the lighting on the map, your head, although a small target, casts a perfect silouette against the background, making it easy for countersnipers or mortar teams to 'pop' you. Counterintuitively, it is actually a far better concealed position to crouch in front of the 'rocks' since their color is rougly a fleshy orange and allies, as seen for afar, also appear roughly this same fleshy orange color. Sure, once seen, you make a large target if you sit in front of the rock, but if you only take headshots and you scan the mountaintop horizon and axis pillbox for prying eyes, the enemies will never see you sniping. One shot 1 kill. Well most of the time unless they have full health, then 2 shots 1 kill.
Part II - Scoping and Aiming

Okay so you are in your favorite concealed spot, all nestled up in your nook and you're looking to 'pink mist' a few enemy heads, but how to aim your K43 and shoot it to guarentee a first shot head shot?

First we consider that the gun's site is the most steady when prone, then crouched, then standing. But I find that the difference between crouched and prone is very minimal and its usually better to remain crouched for fast mobility in case you are spotted, or in case a would be knifer misses with the instant knife kill melee. This allows you to react fast and have a chance of killing your enemy back, before he kills you. While prone you are simply too immobile for the 1 second it takes you to get up and 1 second can mean life or death in war. Of course if your sniper location is the bomb diggity, then go prone with confidence and solitude.

This is what I call the side to side, up and down, 'wawa' of the sight that you experience when aiming with the scope. The 'wawa' actually follows a figure eight pattern turned on its side, of if you prefer the sign for infinity in mathematics. Since we know this pattern constantly repeats, we can use two subtechniques to use this knowledge to our advantage.

a) The nodal point - a node is the point in the wawa's figure eight that is right in the middle of the eight. It is the place where the scope's wawa experience's a moment of inertia, aka it doesn't move at all. This is the sweet spot my friends. If you find this sweet spot overlays on an enemy's head, shoot! You will headshot them everytime (there is no wind, corealis effect, thermal ground convection effects, air pressure calculations, etc. in ET so fire away!)

b) Curving 'her' in there - once your brain starts acclimating to the wawa's figure eight pattern, you will notice that you can still get headshots just outside of the nodal point, in other words just before the node, or just after. This involves shooting slightly left of the enemy's head, or just right of it. The technique relies on the fact that some of the movement of the scope's wawa can be translated into the bullet's movements. I mean after all, if you have your sight aimed perfectly at an enemies head, but the wawa is not at the nodal point, you will miss everytime since the bullet carries a portion of the scope's wawa momentum vector. So reverse engineering this difficulty and using it to our advantage (adapt and overcome), we simply aim a bit off and rely on the wawa to 'curve her in there'. This is pretty hard to do admittedly, especially if the wawa is great and far from the nodal point on the figure eight, but its extremely satisfying. One time, with a little luck and a little skill, I curved one in a distance of over 10 meters. I shot 10 meters right and 2 meters high of the enemy's head and it curved into a heashot. That was freaking awesome, and lucky, but a willfull kind of luckiness that practice makes luckier and luckier with every shot

Magnification and scouting:
This is a very important part of sniping, since often you will not kill your opponent with 1 shot in ET, even if its a perfect 'between the eyes' 3rd eye headshot. So you will need to squeeze off two in rapid succession. Always make sure your first shot is a headshot. If you don't kill the enemy outright, your second shot can hit them anywhere and they will die guarenteed, even if its and ankle shot. But, if you hit their ankle first, they will be alarmed and the probability that you can headshot a visibly shaken and rapidly moving enemy decreases drastically. Some maps have line of sights (LOS) that require only the first magnification order in the scope, say 1x. But if you've ever played Minas Tirith, you know the LOS are very far and to kill an enemy at 1x is a fantastic feat, but why make it hard on yourself? Zoom in all the way, say 8x with your mouse scrolly and make that enemy head as big a target as possible. The drawback with being dialed in all the way at 8x is the kickup after the first shot is huge and you'll find your scope 300 meters up in the air after firing, which means you'll have to lower your sight again and refind your target for the second shot.

My advice is don't try to refind your target while still dialed in at 8x, but rather use the mouse scrolly to quickly dial down the scope to 1x, to quickly refind the target and once found, put your crosshair on the target (well the rough area of the target, it doesn't have to be dead on his head) and then redial up your scope to 8x for the final kill shot. This may sound somewhat like a mouthfull, but it takes maybe half a second to do once you are used to it. 1x scope also makes a great pseudo pair of binoculars but with a smaller field of vision (FOV). But still, I think its better to scan for enemy with the 1x scope rather than using binocs, since binocs can't fire bullets once they've located a target and sniper guns can

Part III - Countersniping and Relocation

Vasilli Zaitsev, famed Russian sniper of WWII made his name in the streets of Stalingrad thwarting the German attackers from the east and became mother Russia's most fearsome sniper. He had over 500 confirmed kills, yes you did not hear incorrectly, 500 confirmed kills and 11 of those were enemy snipers themselves. The bombed out streets of Stalingrad were his home and he made his way through the rubble piles, dilapidated buildings and sewer systems whilst stalking and selecting his enemies, his prey. Countersniping was easily his most dangerous mission and the one that required the most planning. Countersniping in ET is much easier for all the obvious reasons one can think of, including the biggest... ET is a game, Stalingrad was real life. Still, if one respects the art of sniping, one treats their own ET life when acting as a sniper as real life, or as real as one can sitting in an air conditioned room picking their nose (okay maybe just me, but it was itchy I swear! ). Sometimes we get lax and too daring and fire 3 or 4 shots in a row in rapid succession without relocating even two steps to the right or two steps to the left. This is the luxury we have since its only a game after all, but this part of the tutorial will focus on survival above all costs and treat ET sniping as a life and death experience.


There are a few techniques that will help one find that elusive enemy sniper in the first place. To set the stage we will use the new map MLB Temple as an example and begin under the assumption that you are an allied sniper and the map is in the first phase where the tank must cross the bridge.

Finding them: Before you visually scan the horizon from enemy snipers, I would suggest perhaps you bring up your map by pressing 'g'. This will show you the location of all the axis enemies as seen from everyone of your allied brothers' eyeballs. Talk about situational awareness. Real life snipers should be so lucky. If you are even vaguely familiar with the MLB Temple map you will know there are perhaps 5 common axis sniper positions during this 'tank crossing the bridge' phase of the map. Use this preset knowledge overlaid with what you see on your map, to work out exactly where the axis snipers are. True, not every axis sniper will be 'mapped' even with the aid of your teammates' 15+ eyeballs, but my estimate is that about 80% of the time they will in fact appear on the map. Since bringing up the map and scanning it takes under a second, this is time well spent and valuable information easily earned. And what's more you are covered the whole time!

Now we want to find a specific axis sniper to target so we intensify our 'rekki' (short for reconnaissance, not be be confused with 'brekki', short for breakfast lol). For this example lets assume we know that the axis sniper in question has seen us bolt into our position behind a building wall and is waiting for us to pop out on either side of the wall but he doesn't know which side for certain. We first want to see exactly where the axis sniper is so we want to get 'eyes on', but we don't want to be seen and we don't want to expose even a finger to his deathly gaze, forget about a whole torso! So what do you do? SImple. In the crouched or standing position, sidestep to the edge of the wall you are using for cover, say the right edge, and use the under utilized 'r' (right look) to quickly see the enemy's exact position.

Engaging them: The key to this technique is to barely tap the 'r' button, so that in one fluid motion you look out to the right and just as quickly as you looked out, you return to the left behind the safety and goodness of steel reinforced concrete. Also, don't overlook it. Meaning, be far enough back from the right edge, so that when you use the 'r' button to sneak a peak, your whole upper torso doesn't become exposed, even if just for a split second. Ok, so we've found him and he's looking right at us! Any decent axis sniper will have a huge advantage over you at this point because he doesn't have to move to 'train' his gun on where you will be, but for you to aim a shot at him, you first have to move into an exposed position and then aim and then shoot. Bad news for you, good news for him, so how to equalize this situation you find yourself in? Distraction. Using smoke we can focus our enemies attention away from your next move. Throw a smoke grenade just beyond the left edge of the builiding and then step out and fire from the right. Many enemy snipers will be thinking that the smoke on the left edge is to conceal your movement away from the building to another spot, but you know better A good sniper will know this is just a distraction and will still be trained on the right edge of the building. BUT, and this is a big but (think Oprah), there is always a split second when even a good sniper will look at the smoke on the left, before refocussing on the right. Sure his gun might always be trained on the right side, but his mind, for a split second will be thinking about the possibility that you pop out on the smoke side. This is the point when the iron is hottest for you my friend and you must strike! You must calculate what this smoke would look like to the axis sniper from his vantage point and decide just how big in size the smoke has to grow, before the axis sniper will be able to initially see it. Usually about half a second for this part of MLB Temple. So almost right after you throw the smoke, pop out to the right, aim, fire and kill. You can replace the smoke with a grenade if you like since the effect is about the same, but I prefer smoke because its more distracting, although it can be a bullet magnet from would be covertkillers too.

Understanding them: One important point I'd like to make about this technique is this... It is literally impossible for the axis sniper to be undistracted by your diversion. Even the best axis sniper must redirect his attention to your smoke distraction for a split second. The human brain is hardwired to pay attention to these things until the conscious enters and accesses the situation. After all, our caveman ancestors had to detect and avoid alot of animals that were mal intentioned and well enough equipped to claw them to pieces. To prove this point consider a simple experiment you can do while reading this. Turn your right speaker off or set your speaker balance all the way to the left. Queue up your favorite Celine Dion song (haha just kidding, queue up your favorite Led Zeppelin song) and focus on the period at the end of this sentence. Now without removing your gaze from this dot, play the song and try to keep completely focussed on the dot. You will find that your eyes move minutely to the left as your focus is ever so slightly shifted to the sounds coming out of the left speaker. This experienced shift in your focus, may be no more than a few pixels in total, say 5 or less, but its a shift nonetheless. This uncontrollable temporary loss of focus on the dot is an inate response by your brain. It occurs because your senses compete with one another for your brain's attention, or more specifically, your brain has a limited number of pathways in which your sensory information can be processed and your senses often compete for the same pathway. Therefore one sense must suppress another, even if only from a fraction of a second. There is also intersensory competition as anyone who has been to a restaurant knows, since at any given time there are a dozen loud conversations going on but at any given time you can only focus on one, maybe two, but one of the two's fidelity will suffer greatly. The same thing goes for the visual process and this is why the smoke distraction works every time. The skill is in timing your 'pop out, aim and fire' sequence to coincide with your enemy sniper's moment of distraction. This may be 1/5th of a second or less, but rarely more. But hey, this is alot of time for a sniper. After all there is the sniper saying about shooting moving targets at range, which goes, 'Death can come a millisecond too early or a millisecond too late.'
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Re: sniping guide

Postby Alone » 25 Apr 2009, 09:57

too much to read:D Training makes perfect;)
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Re: sniping guide

Postby unlawful sniper » 13 Sep 2009, 01:34

I remember when Fred stole this tutorial i wrote a few months back. We agreed that he would give me a credit, but I don't see any. Wow. Not very honest. And he totally butchered the formatting, so its nearly unreadable lol. Thanks fred lol
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Re: sniping guide

Postby ETc|Dipl Ing dEI mUDDER » 13 Sep 2009, 10:52

I think Fred is gone now anyway. A fairly ungloryful leaving. But nice to know that he didnt write all his tutorials himself. Was wondering at the time, how he could write so much stuff in so short time.
So her we go: Unlawful sniper! Nice Job!
Hope that was kinda ok.
ET-World needs dudes like you.
Cya on the battlefield,
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