Evolve What To Do When A Hunter Is Down

Evolve Stage 2 What To Do When A Hunter Is Down by LocoPojo

Hello all! Pojo again, taking a (probably not so) quick aside for a (probably not so) short talk about what to do when your allies are down on the ground.

In any dome, the monster has one simple way to get out without taking a lot of damage – knock over your party members. If he does, he gets a 3:30 discount on the domes five minute timer, enough to save him easily a bar of health if not the whole thing. As a result, Monsters will focus down your party members. A lot. So it’s important to know how to behave when that happens.

The first instinct when a hunter falls is to charge in and try to get him up, sometimes even when the monster is standing over the body hammering on it. There’s a lot of pressure to do this – everyone wants to be the hero who swoops in and gets a fallen teammate up, and the teammate would certainly rather be up on his feet than up in the dropship.

Unfortunately, rushing the fallen hunter is usually the wrong instinct. Most monsters are just waiting for the opportunity to use their considerable AOE skills on both the KO’d hunter and the unwitting revivalist. If a monster knocks two hunters over in the same spot, the result is something I tend to call a “corpse pile” in streams – it’s two dead hunters for sure, and anyone who approaches it is just added to the chaff as the game is now rapidly approaching a GG situation. With two hunters down, a monster can easily hold a single point of space from the hunters and the only viable option is retreat. Don’t make corpse piles. If you want your friend to survive, you’re going to have to get smart.

  • First things first: spread out and get some distance from the body. You need to have players at multiple angles from the monster to divide its attention. Almost all monsters must close distance with another hunter to do real damage, and when that happens, real opportunities will open up for a player to run in and revive the KO’d teammate. If the monster closes on you, try to retreat backwards away from you fallen comrade, as the monster will have to turn back to stop any encroaching players. Never run towards the body, as you’ll usually create a three hunter pileup with you, your fallen comrade, and the person trying to res him. If you run away and get knocked over, the monster will now have two bodies to watchguard, spread out by distance, and there’s very few ways he can effectively defend both of them at once. That means that one of you gets up, which means the monster is much more likely to bail.
  • Second: Pour on the fire. Remember, the monster is on a dome timer here, and that timer is reduced by health damage. If he takes too much damage, he’ll be incentivized to leave when the dome drops. If he still has armor, he’ll stay until everyone is dead. In addition, the monster is currently as attached to the outcome of what happens to your friend as you are, which means it’s going to try to stay close to the body, maybe even sit still and try to attack it. When it does this, it makes itself a target. You need to put pressure on it to force it to go elsewhere, or you will never get the revive. Even the downed pistol is an important tool here, and can mean the difference between life and death.
  • Third: Look to extend the life of your partner. Every medic except Lazarus can heal a KO’d hunter from range. For characters like EMET and Slim, it’s by use of long ranged fire-and-forget abilities like the Healing Buoy. For Val and Caira, focused healing works wonders at raising that health bar up. Rogue Val has a mix – her passive aura can revive people even when she herself has fallen and her healgun ain’t too bad at the job either. Since a hunter gets up if their health is returned to full, using these techniques will punish the monster any time he steps away from the body. All support shields work to stop damage dealt to KO’d teammates, including (last I checked) tick damage from bleedout.

Fallen Hunters have a larger health bar and can take a thorough beating, which means that if you’re willing to give them the attention they deserve, they can tank for your team. This results in a frustrating situation for the monster where he may have to abandon the body and make a run for it, giving you an actual opportunity to revive.

  • Now that the monsters attention is divided, look for your opportunity – and for traps. If you’re a Lazarus, you probably know this game by heart. The best time to revive a hunter manually is the moment it has lost attention from the body – if you get it in quick, do your job fast, and keep up jetpack fuel to get out, you can win a major victory for your team and secure the rest of the dome. Tighten up on the corpse when you see the monster is looking at someone else, and wait for your opportunity.

Remember, each Monster has one to three ways to quickly do damage and interrupt a rez from range – lightning strikes, leap smashes, warp blasts, the whole shebang. Wait for as many of these to be used up as possible – they’re key damage tools, and if it doesn’t use them, it’s obviously not as interested in killing the thing it’s focusing as killing you when you go in. With Gorgon, you mostly need to worry about the web blast, but you absolutely MUST keep track of where the spider trap is and shoot it away from the body before trying a revive.

If they see you, and they often will see you, you need to be ready to move. When reviving, face in the direction of the monster so you can see what it’s looking at. If it looks at you, make a quick decision on whether to cut and run. Remember: a revive is a point in your favor, but a corpse pile is game over. Have an escape route planned if it turns back.

  • Finally, Be prepared to cut your losses. The first dropship timer is only ten seconds – if you have to let a player die, so be it. They don’t incur extra strikes for dying, and you’ll have them back with you soon enough. If you can trade real damage for that one strike, it was worth it. Live to fight another day

Addendum: What to do when it goes completely FUBAR: In case you’re wondering when to run, things are usually truly bad when:

  • At least two hunters are down
  • Both bodies are close together or otherwise impossible to revive without taking damage
  • The dropship timer is around 20 seconds or more out
  • The monster has a bar of effective health or higher.

If all of these things are happening, run. In opposite directions. I cannot stress this enough. The monster moves way faster than any one hunter, so the only way to lose them is to force them to burn their traversals in one direction while a hunter runs the other way. An Assault can stay and try to chip the monster a bit, but any extra distance you can create between you and your soon-to-be last man standing is critical. The person who ends up being the sacrificial lamb usually ends up on the dropship, which means all four of you will be back together when it comes back – IF you managed to get at least one person away from the fight. If you run together or continue the fight the monster can end the game right then and there. Get all the distance you can, unless you are worried about game end by Relay – in which case, get the maximum amount of distance you can while still having a position to harass the relay from.

That’s about it for now! Keep safe, keep alive, don’t add your body to the corpse pile.

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