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(Grenadier vs. Danger Zone)
(Testing shows it does actually destroy cover.)
 
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**Danger Zone adds a small area of effect onto Suppression, which can be useful - rarely.
 
**Danger Zone adds a small area of effect onto Suppression, which can be useful - rarely.
 
***Danger Zone suppression can suppress multiple targets at once, granting potential reactive fire on each of these targets.
 
***Danger Zone suppression can suppress multiple targets at once, granting potential reactive fire on each of these targets.
***When combined with [[Suppression]], Danger Zone has significant synergy with [[Mayhem]], allowing unlimited small AOE attacks that hit automatically. Both the damage and radius are low, however, and it doesn't destroy cover.
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***When combined with [[Suppression]], Danger Zone has significant synergy with [[Mayhem]], allowing unlimited small AOE attacks that hit automatically. Both the damage and radius are low, but it ''can'' be used to destroy cover.
   
 
*'''Grenadier''' allows two grenades in a single inventory slot. In ''XCOM: Enemy Within'', the ability also grants +1 damage to [[Frag Grenade (XCOM: Enemy Unknown)|Frag]], [[Alien Grenade|Alien]], and [[Needle Grenade]]s.
 
*'''Grenadier''' allows two grenades in a single inventory slot. In ''XCOM: Enemy Within'', the ability also grants +1 damage to [[Frag Grenade (XCOM: Enemy Unknown)|Frag]], [[Alien Grenade|Alien]], and [[Needle Grenade]]s.
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*Mayhem pairs nicely with Shredder Rocket, as 2 rockets is serviceable enough for many missions and Mayhem lifts its damage some - Use shredder rocket for demolition and if things go wrong, you have the big mayhem rocket in reserve. If they don't, just use the big rocket next and on many missions things are relatively under control by then.
 
*Mayhem pairs nicely with Shredder Rocket, as 2 rockets is serviceable enough for many missions and Mayhem lifts its damage some - Use shredder rocket for demolition and if things go wrong, you have the big mayhem rocket in reserve. If they don't, just use the big rocket next and on many missions things are relatively under control by then.
 
**Battleship, Supply Barges, and plot missions often feature 20 or more aliens in serial engagements, which can overtax a Mayhem heavy.
 
**Battleship, Supply Barges, and plot missions often feature 20 or more aliens in serial engagements, which can overtax a Mayhem heavy.
* Suppression dealing 2-3 damage is a somewhat modest boost, but can finish low targets in cover. With [[Danger Zone]] this also allows you to do repeatable AOE damage, albeit in a very small area and without destroying cover.
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* Suppression dealing 2-3 damage is a somewhat modest boost, but can finish low targets in cover. With [[Danger Zone]] this also allows you to do repeatable AOE damage, albeit in a very small area.
 
* Mayhem does not add damage to grenades.<noinclude>
 
* Mayhem does not add damage to grenades.<noinclude>
 
[[Category:Guides (XCOM: Enemy Unknown)]]</noinclude>
 
[[Category:Guides (XCOM: Enemy Unknown)]]</noinclude>

Latest revision as of 09:45, July 29, 2020

Many players who have completed Ironman on Classic and Impossible difficulties recommend taking at least Bullet Swarm, Shredder Rocket, and Danger Zone.

Bullet Swarm vs. Holo-TargetingEdit

Bullet Swarm greatly improves the capabilities of the Heavy; Holo-Targeting is weaker initially as a stand-alone talent - it requires commitment to its synergies (Suppression, Rapid Reaction, Danger Zone, Mayhem).

  • Bullet Swarm allows a Heavy to perform new turn action combinations, including:
    • Fire weapon twice per turn
    • Fire weapon before a half-move.
    • Fire weapon before using Reload
    • Fire weapon before using a grenade (or other items)
    • Fire weapon before using Overwatch
    • Fire weapon before using Suppression
    • Fire weapon before using Mindfray (or other Psionic abilities)
    • Fire weapon before using Hunker Down
  • Double shot misses can even be relevant as LMG fire can destroy light cover.
  • Bullet Swarm's additional shot with a heavy weapon against large targets is frequently better than a small Aim bonus.
  • The advantage of new turn combinations cannot be overstated. Fire weapon->kill->advance, fire weapon->miss->retreat, fire weapon->miss->grenade, fireweapon->hunkerdown in half cover in particular may see frequent use.

Holo-Targeting promotes a more mobile strategy, as it's unaffected by an initial half-move.

  • Holo-Targeting adds to the reliability of triggering Rapid Reaction, although the difference is relatively minor.
  • Holo-Targeting's +10 Aim bonus is useful for assisting Rookies and Squaddies in earning kills
  • Holo-Targeting is at its best against large targets where a squad can focus fire. This advantage however, is dubious, as 10 aim is relatively marginal compared to the benefits of an entire additional attack (or other turn combinations), at least until synergies are available (and likely afterwards).

Shredder Rocket vs. SuppressionEdit

Shredder Rocket is a strong stand-alone talent. Suppression is weaker as a stand-alone talent; it requires commitment to its synergies (Holo-Targeting, Rapid Reaction, Danger Zone, Mayhem), which are also individually weaker.

  • Shredder Rockets provides an additional rocket that deals 4 damage and applies 33% increased damage debuff against struck foes.
    • Shredder Rocket destroys cover, hits multiple targets, detonates cars/power sources/explosive terrain, has a long range and a wide area of effect.
    • Shredder Rocket allows precise lowering of an aliens' health (without weapon damage variance or critical hits) for easier alien capture.
  • Suppression applies a -30 Aim penalty and grants reaction fire on a single target.
    • Some strong uses for Suppression include:
      1. Clear away Overwatchers, as Suppression removes Overwatch
      2. Neutralize aliens that are dangerously close to gaining a flank, where overwatch may be unreliable for this role, potentially proccing on another alien and exhausting its single use.
  • Suppression is largely redundant with Lightning Reflexes (Assault), which is an incredibly quick, powerful, and reliable way of nullifying enemy overwatches.
  • Enemies can still throw grenades, use psyonics, emit poison, etc when under suppressing fire.
  • Suppressing fire cannot crit.
  • Suppression costs 2 ammo; Heavies only have 3 shots per clip (and only 6 after Ammo Conservation).
  • Suppression's Aim penalty does not prevent aliens from killing squad members, unless said target is locked down under multiple suppressions, at which time they can still use grenades/psy/etc.
  • Suppression's lockdown utility may be better utilized by S.H.I.V.s and the Support Class's Rifle Suppression ability, some reasons include: the support's ammunition is often less important than the Heavy's highly damaging LMG ammo, and whereas S.H.I.V. cannot gain levelups or experience of any kind.

HEAT Ammo vs. Rapid ReactionEdit

HEAT Ammo is situational but extremely effective when active. Both talents have some degree of merit, although HEAT ammo can potentially make your Heavy exceedingly efficient at dispatching robotic targets. Rapid Reaction is weaker as a stand-alone talent; it requires commitment to its synergies (Holo-Targeting, Suppression, Danger Zone, Mayhem), which are also individually weaker. 

  • HEAT Ammo provides +100% (reduced to +50% in XCOM: Enemy Within)  damage bonus when used against robotic targets.
    • HEAT Ammo is extremely effective against Cyberdiscs, Drones, Mechtoids, and Sectopods, even at +50%.
    • Heat Ammo applies to all attacks, including rockets and grenades; this makes it highly effective with any of the other explosive-oriented Heavy skills.
  • Rapid Reaction is an unreliable general purpose boost to reactive fire as the Heavies' Aim statistic is the lowest of all classes.
    • Rapid Reaction is relatively effective against Chryssalids and Berserkers, as melee aliens must move in order to attack, so if well positioned, a holotargetting heavy can generate close range reactive fire twice.
    • Consider stacking aim bonuses; Scope, Archangel Armor flight, aim gene mods, medals, etc.
      • A Rapid Reaction Holo heavy can be viable, albeit typically rather suboptimal, with enough resources committed to it.
    • Most Heavies from early game will be promoted Bullet Swarm instead of Holotargetting, which makes Rapid Reaction hard to justify.
    • In Enemy Unknown, Rapid Reaction is relatively weak.

Grenadier vs. Danger ZoneEdit

Danger Zone is preferred for most cases: it has synergies with both sides of the Heavy ability tree in ways Grenadier does not.

  • Danger Zone increases Area of Effect on Rocket attacks and Suppression by 2 tiles.
    • A Danger Zone Rocket's area of effect is 225% that of normal, which is quite significant, and extends a rocket's reach even further.
      • The area of effect is so big that even if the rocket veers off target, it may still affect the intended target.
    • Danger Zone adds a small area of effect onto Suppression, which can be useful - rarely.
      • Danger Zone suppression can suppress multiple targets at once, granting potential reactive fire on each of these targets.
      • When combined with Suppression, Danger Zone has significant synergy with Mayhem, allowing unlimited small AOE attacks that hit automatically. Both the damage and radius are low, but it can be used to destroy cover.
  • Grenadier allows two grenades in a single inventory slot. In XCOM: Enemy Within, the ability also grants +1 damage to Frag, Alien, and Needle Grenades.
    • In XCOM: Enemy Unknown, Heavies are generally better served with items such as a S.C.O.P.E. or Chitin Plating.
    • Bullet Swarm Heavies tend to park and send rockets and sustained LMG fire until all hostiles in LOS are dead before moving again; as grenades have limited range, oftentimes they are not in position to grenade enemy cover, even with a half move. Assaults and Support half move freely as engagements develop.
    • Grenadier does provide greater utility in XCOM: Enemy Within due to the expansion's addition of Tactical Rigging and non-lethal grenades (Flashbang, Gas, and Ghost).
    • Ghost grenade(s) make a good pairing with Grenadier as they are expensive, yet have a powerful effect.

Rocketeer vs. MayhemEdit

Both promotions are somewhat close in terms of value: select whichever best suits the Heavy's role.

  • Destroying cover and exposing foes is often the most important aspect of rockets, and rocketeer increases your total capacity to do so by at least 50%.
  • Rocketeer grants an additional source of reliable damage that you can use to finish kills in otherwise dangerous situations.
  • Rocketeer ensures you have enough explosive ordinance to meet most challenges presented by the game.
  • Rocketeer greatly speeds up missions overall - Rocketeer allows for the removal of 1-2 pods' cover at the first sign of trouble while still retaining more rockets.
  • Rocketeer is exceptional for setting up kills for Rookies.

Mayhem adds 1-3 damage based on weapon tech level to Rockets and Suppression.

  • Mayhem maximizes the power of a single Rocket.
    • The cover-destroying property of rockets are generally the most important aspect of their use.
  • 2-3 damage by the time colonels are promoted is somewhat minor.
  • Mayhem rockets kill a Chryssalid in one shot, no Blaster Launcher required.
  • H.E.A.T. Ammo further boosts Mayhem bonus damage against robotic enemies.
  • Mayhem is a safer pick for Terror Sites, where XCOM can be overrun in an instant.
  • While it can bail you out if you activate too many pods, for the rest of the methodical clears you will feel the lack of explosives.
  • Mayhem pairs nicely with Shredder Rocket, as 2 rockets is serviceable enough for many missions and Mayhem lifts its damage some - Use shredder rocket for demolition and if things go wrong, you have the big mayhem rocket in reserve. If they don't, just use the big rocket next and on many missions things are relatively under control by then.
    • Battleship, Supply Barges, and plot missions often feature 20 or more aliens in serial engagements, which can overtax a Mayhem heavy.
  • Suppression dealing 2-3 damage is a somewhat modest boost, but can finish low targets in cover. With Danger Zone this also allows you to do repeatable AOE damage, albeit in a very small area.
  • Mayhem does not add damage to grenades.
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