A guide to playing a utility PFC that trades in some killing power for healing and engineering utility.
You fight on the frontlines as needed while helping the Engineers and Medics do their jobs by ripping up vents/pipes, welding doors, repairing sentries and robolimbs, dismantling windows and grilles, moving vendors, breaking stuff down into metal and keeping marines (and yourself) up right.
#1: Thou Shalt Get Thy Attachments:
As a utility PFC who is packing a satchel, you have one weapon, so you need to make it count; it must be versatile and capable of handling nearly any opponent in any situation.
To this end you'll be taking a M41A rifle with one of the following loadouts:
Quickfire Adapter: Masterkey:
Burst Fire Assembly:
Gyroscopic Stabilizer: Important: You can mitigate some of the risk of not using a Magnetic Harness by having a readily accessed key bound to the following macro for quick retrieval of your weapon in the event you drop it: pick-up M41A-pulse-rifle-MK2\nActivate-Held-Object
#2: Thou Shalt Get Thy Gear:
- A gas mask.
- 1 box of buckshot (if using the Masterkey; otherwise take another box/medikit filled with painkillers, and a spare flask).
- 1-2 medikit (ask Medbay or your Squad Medic, Req or salvage one from the oxy lockers) filled with medical supplies; at least 2 stacks of bandages, 2 stacks of ointment, 1 stack of splints, and an HF2 Health Scanner (optional) the rest can be painkiller injectors. Second medikit if taken should be full of painkiller injectors, one first aid injector, a spare flask, perhaps a medHUD (if you're not wearing one).
- 1 bodybag box with the following in order of priority: a cryobag, a wrench, a crowbar, wirecutters, welding goggles, a welder, (these are your utility tools, along with a screwdriver on your helmet), a station bounced radio, a bayonet (emergency weapon of last resort/good for clearing weed structures while in close quarters if you want to keep your weapon ready), mini-extinguisher.
- A roller bed is optional but very, albeit situationally, useful.
Your helmet should include a flask and a screwdriver. Fill spare slots with stale protein bars.
Your armour should contain 2 HE grenades, or rifle magazines otherwise (or one slot with buckshot shells if you are running the Masterkey and have no webbing or general pouch that has buckshot shells; for easy retrieval when reloading).
You should have a first aid pouch loaded with painkiller injectors. Replacing one first aid pouch with a medium or large general pouch is acceptable; load this with magazines and one handful of shotgun shells (if you're taking Masterkey). Take a (large) pistol ammo loaded with buckshot if you're taking the M37 (get a large pistol pouch from Req, standard from your regular vendors).
You should have an ammo rig loaded with rifle magazines (or shotgun shell load rig if you're using the M37).
If possible, get a medHUD so you can better serve as a ghetto field medic (ask Medbay or your Squad Medic).
If possible, get a webbing and load it with ammo.
Note that you won't always be able to gather all of this stuff; do the best you can and fill in the gaps where able.
A couple of demonstrative screenshots (I was unable to get everything on the list before deployment unfortunately):
#3: Thou Shalt Utilize Thy Potential:
So you're a PFC with a bunch of tools and utility items; what do?
During downtime when you're out of combat or are on the backline, mostly the following:
- Use your wirecutters to remove/reposition barbed wire; especially good for getting past otherwise impassable barbed wire blockaides.
- Use your crowbar and wrench to pry up floor tiles and remove pipe segments, vents and scrubbers to deny xenos valuable avenues of ambush/movement. Note that xenos can come out of pipes, if the connecting segment is disconnected, but they cannot get back in; this is useful if they'd disembark in front of a barricade firing line/sentry, and problematic if they can get out behind your defensive lines; avoid the latter at all costs.
- Use your welder to weld/unweld doors, vents and scrubbers, and to repair sentries, walls and robolimbs. Remember to equip and flip down your welding goggles/mask.
- Use all of your mighty tools to dismantle standard walls.
- Use your screwdriver and crowbar to neatly and quickly remove windows.
- Use your trusty screwdriver to gouge out the eyes of unsuspecting Predators.
- Use your wrench to unsecure and secure vendors and girders; great for retrieving that First Aid Station or MedVend or making an impromptu barricade.
- Use your wrench (and welder as necessary) to break down tables, chairs and racks into metal for your engineer friends.
- Use your wirecutters to bypass barbed barricades in a pinch.
- Use your crowbar to open depowered doors; no need to wait for the squad engineer!
- Dose the badly injured and those to be revived with one of your many Tricordrazine injectors. Do not succumb to the temptation to use one more than one as this heightens the risk of accidental overdoses (doubly so if the patient is already bandaged, which implies that he may have received one tricord dose already).
- Use your MedHUD (hopefully) and copious medical supplies to identify, heal up and splint said badly injured marines.
- Remember to recharge and restock your supplies at MedVends and First Aid Stations, such as spent Tricordrazine injectors (including ones you find on the gorund).
- Don't use bandages and ointment on someone if a Medic is likely to treat them in the immediate future or if a Medic is in the process of treating as his application of trauma/burn kits restore more health.
- Use your HF2 Analyzer (if you took it) to identify your patient's needs if examining and listening to him is insufficient.
- Use your roller bed and cryobag to whisk the injured off the frontline and to safety.
- Hide in your bodybag to ambush unsuspecting Xenos... or just hide. Most effective with a burst damage weapon like a BFA or Masterkey rifle.
- Keep in touch with everyone and relay important information with your station bounced radio.