PlanetSide Thumper Guide
PlanetSide Thumper Guide by Mongoose11
Ok here’s a short beginners guide to using the thumper correctly.
The Thumper is a six shot grenade launcher that can be armed with 3 different types of grenade, Frag, Plasma & Jammer (we will go into ammo types in greater detail later in this guide) It has 2 fire modes – primary mode sets the grenades to explode on contact (self explanitory), secondary mode gives your grenades a 2 second fuse allowing the user to “bounce” the grenade off surfaces and around corners.
How to use the Thumper.
The Thumper does not use line of sight targeting, it fires in an arc which limits its range to 100-150m depending on your elevation and requires the user to judge their shots rather than point at the target and fire. For this reason alone it does take some practice and skill to get your grenades to land accurately especially with the first shot. The grenade itself also moves quite slowly so when trying to hit moving targets you may have to lead them by quite a way depending on their speed and distance. Once you factor in the lead and elevation to a target you can start to deal out some serious dammage though it may take a couple of rounds to find your range especially if you are new to the weapon. Do not worry even the best Thumper users often fire a round just to gauge the range. For far off targets you will find yourself firing at a 45+ degree angle which may mean that you can no longer see your intended target as you are pointing to the sky. It may seem like a “fire and hope” weapon at times but it is perfect for suppressing advancing troops.
There are certain situations when the thumper really is the weapon of choice.
This is possibly where the thumper comes into its own. As it is not line of sight weapon you can fire “blind” whilst crouched behind cover and still hit the enemy. Here is how i play the wall defence against a zerg. Position yourself on the wall that is under the greatest threat. If you cant easily determine which wall that is check the map, find the back door of the base and position yourself above it (the back door is often the prefered entry point for a heavily defended base). Now quickly run to the edge of the wall and check the situation, hopefully you will see swathes of enemy footsoldiers zerging towards the back door/wall. Move back from the edge of the wall, crouch so you can’t be seen and fire into their midst. You will probably get 2-3 rounds off before the enemy head for cover but watch out for your fellow defenders on the wall they won’t appreciate a plasma nade in the back. Go back to the outside edge of the catwalk and reassess the situ, if it is clear of incoming fire you may wish to stay there in order to get more accurate shots, if you choose to do this do not stand still but dodge from side to side, there is bound to be a sniper watching you. For expert users only – Some enemy that make it through the barrage will likely gather next to the base walls as this area has some cover from the wall defenders. To target these troops you will need to climb onto the wall (although next to a wall turret is best), climb up fire 2-3 rounds and retreat to cover, this is a very risky manouver and is likely to get you killed but if executed properly you can bag 4-5 soldiers who are likey to be repairing themselves and are therefore vulnerable, speed is the key with this trick.
again the thumper has a distinct advantage over other weapons as it can fire around corners using the secondary fire mode and dammage enemies that cannot shoot back (unless they also have a thumper/maelstrom). Try to stay out of the enemies line of sight and use the thumper to suppress rather than kill the enemy. If you are working in a team or near friendlies try using macros like “Thumper user in action” or something similar, just to give your troops some warning. At the top of the tower stand near the door but not blocking it, fire 3-4 rounds down the stairs in secondary mode then stand back and allow the heavy assault troops to move in and mop up. If you are in a prolonged fight for the spawn room in a tower be very careful, do not fire constantly, pick your shots and try to vary where they land (think squash or racketball, bouncing off different parts of the wall/floor will ensure a good spread of dammage.)
This is also true of any situation where the enemy is enclosed in a small area i.e. a corridor in a base, spawn room, CC. If it is clear to do so fire a few rounds into the room/corridor then switch to either MA or HA and mop up the wounded enemy.
There will be times when you will engage the enemy outside in the open at medium range, again the thumper can work as an offensive weapon but is more effective if used in a squad as a supression weapon. You fire grenades in the general direction of the enemy, hopefully hitting a few of them and forcing them to find cover whilst your squad mates attempt to flank them. This is the standard Fire team / Assault team proceedure.
Attacking a base
Now you are going to be on the recieving end of some thumpers for sure. Try not to stay out in the open near the base walls as you will be a prime target for any thumper user. Instead try to get to the walls themselves and stay tucked in. You can now use your thumper to supress the wall defenders by standing parallel to the wall and firing onto it. If the defenders are directly above you it will be difficult to land any meaningful shots. Avoid the up and down method (shooting almost straight up in primary mode) as any slight misjudgement could result in you killing yourself or your team mates. Only try this if you are highly competent with the thumper. I usually equip jammer grenades when assaulting a base as you can quickly run into an minefield or be confronted by a freshly spawned tank. In these situations you may not have time to swap out your ammo, think ahead if possible.
When NOT to use the Thumper.
In enclosed areas like small rooms. As the Thumper is an area of effect weapon you will only hurt yourself and likely your team mates.
If you are in a zerg and surrounded by friendlies or there are multiple friendlies attacking the same point (back door/tower door/spawn room/CC). This is a recipe for disaster and a certain road to grief and a weapons lock.
If you are experiencing bad lag / high ping or generally unstable gaming conditions. You may notice that players sometimes jump around in planetside. If you notice this holster that thumper, what may seem to you a clear doorway full of enemy may be a situation 5-10 seconds old, if you fire you may well be firing on your own troops even if your screen shows otherwise.
One on one close quarters combat. Although at 15+ metres you are safe to use the thumper against the enemy if they close on you, you will start to dammage yourself and its likely that you will kill yourself before the enemy has a chance to do so.
Ammo Types and loadouts
As stated earlier there are 3 types of grenade compatible with the Thumper, lets look at them in more detail.
Plasma Grenade – This is most peoples choice for use with the thumper. It is an AI grenade and is primarily designed for engaging many troops at once. It will cause heavy dammage to multiple soft targets (troops) with a single shot but only minimal dammage to hard targets (MAX,Vehicles). It has a large blast radius (approx 10-15m), spraying burning plasma onto anyone within its range. Those within the plasma blast will glow green and take dammage for a few seconds after the blast. The closer the enemy is to the centre of the blast the more dammage will be done whereas those on the edge of the blast radius will only be mildly affected. The dammage stacks which means each shot will add dammage to the last, seems obvious but this was only implemented a few months back. Plasma is also a “terror” weapon as it causes panic amongst groups of soldiers who suddenly find themselves taking dammage even after the initial explosion. If you ever wanted know how Col.Saunders felt when he assaulted his first chicken then this puppy is for you. WARNING – 1 plasma grenade fired onto a group of friendly troops will earn you 100+ grief points and many hate tells so always check your targets.
Frag grenade – a good all round grenade, will cause high dammage to soft targets and medium dammage to hard targets. It has a medium blast radius which means that it won’t cause as much grief as the plasma grenade but you will still have to be careful where you fire it.
Jammer grenade – the most underused and underated of the 3 ammo types. Jammer grenades will stop any vehicle from firing their weapons for 20 secs. They are the great leveler, it will reduce the mighty vanguard to nothing more threatening than an irrate ice cream van and will usually result in its destuction from AV fire or cause the vehicle in question to turn and run with its tail between its legs. You can literally save an entire platoon with such an action and earn serious kudos from your team mates. Beware though the effect only last 20 secs and if only partly wounded that vehicle will return, probably with a little more caution however. Jammers will also destroy enemy mines and Boomers within its blast radius and disable spitfire turrets and motion sensors, again for 20 secs. Used on troops and MAXs’, it won’t dammage them but it will reset their implants handing the edge to your empire in a combat situation.
Reinforecd exosuit(rexo) is a must with the thumper as the weapon is not suitable for all situations. My own preference is to carry the Medium assult rifle if i’m outside and the Heavy Assault weapon if venturing indoors. After using plasma grenades almost exclusively at first i’m now of the opinion that the frag grenade is superior in most respects. It doesn’t dispense grief quite so quickly and will cause significant dammage to most targets. I usually equip 3 boxes of frag grenades and 1 box of jammer grenades. When saving a thumper set up in your favourites remember to first get the right ammo equiped in the thumper before you save it, you may also wish to check your inventory after you have done this to make sure you have full ammo boxes, then save it.