What's the point of Heavies?

I ask because in the five games I’ve now restarted, Cannons suck. They barely have a 10% hit rate over 100 uses across those games. Do they hit hard? I don’t actually know, because they almost never hit. And Heavy is almost always lagging behind every other class, by at least a level or 2, until I pick up a Goliath and even then, it’s a bit sloppy a toy.

So maybe I’m a little too frustrated, but what’s the point of a class that can’t do it’s job?

1 Like

I open a topic about this and there are some ideas and strategies about that. I think they become better at later as I still prefer an assault or sniper at early game.

If I’m doing them ‘wrong’, all right, fine I am. Can somone, anyone point me to an Early Game way of making Heavies work. Even if it’s like giving them assault weapons, focus on throwing 'nades or whatever.

I just want to enjoy the class, as much as I like the Assaults and Snipers. And here’s the thing, I know that Heavies CAN (not that I’ve seen it) get better and there are some neat weapon options for them later. But it’s getting to that ‘Later’ is the problem for me.

I just want tips and tricks, if that’s all there is to it.

I gave the link already, you can read them for the tips you need. At early game people mostly use it rocket jump and melee. For more ranged fight, you need to replace armor.

Heavies are great ! You have to get close, though. They also have good melee attack - you can jump right next to an enemy and melee in one turn. Their armour can take a few hits if you invest into strength - which you should.

1 Like

Hel Cannon is one of the hardest hitting weapons in the game. If you can’t hit with it, then you attack from too far away. Tips:

  • Use Jet Jump (ability attached to heavy armor for torso) to get closer to enemy in first turn (choose spots where your heavy can’t be attacked easily - rooftops, towers etc) and in next turn jump down and kill anything that is close enough.
  • When you will get level Brawler skill helps to dispatching enemies right after Jet Jump next to enemy
  • After another level take War Cry and use it after jumping in vicinity of most dangerous enemies (also try to land in spot not easily accessible) it will cut power of enemies significantly
  • When you don’t want to jet jump (for example because there is no right spot) then use full movement points in one turn to stay ahead of other soldiers, and in next turn set close overwatch cone for incoming enemies - you will see wonders happening.
  • it is advisable that when gaining levels to increase strength to at least 18, willpower to 10 and speed to 15 to perform good enough with heavy

Remember you can switch out armor to increase the accuracy of a Heavy, at a cost of decreasing the armor value. Also there are attributes you’ll be able to add to the heavy to increase accuracy. Plus you can add a second class to the Heavy to make them more flexible. However, sometimes it is better to keep the Heavy as a Heavy, using it to jet up close to an enemy, take the damage and then kill it the next turn. I find a Heavy useful to go after a damaged Pandoran that is trying to hide from my ranged shooters.

1 Like

All what @Yokes write above plus one little hint:

  • The Hel II Cannon can easily shot through many walls or other obstacles. If you can’t target a nearby enemy behind a wall, rock, window or what ever then simply use free aim to shot there and then you will have much more fun with the cannon. For better hit chances you should be as close as you can but not direct adjacent to an obstacle where you want to shot through, you need at least one tile distance to take a free aim shot at this obstacle (i.e. the enemy behind that :wink: ).
1 Like

For heavies concentrate on gaining XP when you can, like in the first Anu mission. You should be able to bash 3-4 worms here. Run/jet jump close enough to war cry, then bash on the next turn. Only fire the hel cannon as a last resort! Don’t underestimate war cry. It shuts down any sniper without quick aim ( though they may still have a secondary attack) and chiron ranged attacks. Back in pre 1.5 with the open citadel floorplan, I faced 2 bomb chirons who happened to be near each other. My heavy used war cry for 3 turns while the rest of my assault party fought up to them so they could kill those bomb chirons. There were the old 60 damage ones too that could incapacitate your squad in a single volley so letting them fire even once would have been a disaster. War cry saved the day!

They do need to get close, and at level 1 and 2 are less potent than the other classes, but they have some perc combos that make them killing machines in the later game.

On heavy melee - is there a way of pre-estimating the melee damage from hitting with a weapon before we are actually standing next to the target? Good to know how much damage I am likely to cause before jet-packing next to an enemy…

Also, what causes damage to the weapon being used and how is this computed? I assume it’s linked to armor from what I observe…

Strength, weight of weapon and if heavy has Brawler.

Strength * Weapon weight (* 1.5 with Brawler) = damage

For instance, a Heavy with 20 strength and Brawler bashing with the Hell II:
20 * 5 * 1,5 = 150 damage

I don’t know exactly but it seems to me around 10% of the damage you have done on the enemy.

1 Like

So… The Hel II is best used as a massive bludgeon. Well, that’s one way to save on ammo costs…

Thank you.


The HEL gun is pretty strong, if you bash with it. So if you see a lonely enemy, you can jetpack to the melee range and bash it. Hel gun is also a good alternative weapon for any character, that may go into melee range for bashing, because bashing does not need the weapon skill, so it don’t fail and cost 1 AP. Hel gun bashing is pretty strong in early game, for example if you attacking enemy heavies. Usually you need ages to kill enemy heavies, but if you jump to it, using warcry to remove 2 AP from the heavy and then bash it, it pretty strong.

Most time, i replace the heavy legs with faster version legs, because legs are most time under cover and wont get hit anyway.

Heavy is meant to be a melee character, for example if you find a Chiron, you jump to it and then warcrieing it, to prevent it from shooting, the next steop would be, to daze him then with neuralizer, because shooting takes too long and at 50% daze, the chiron has anyway 2 AP remaining, meaning it is uselesse for the enemy now.

Heavies aren’t bad, the problem is they’re kind of counter-intuitive. What they’re good at isn’t what you’d expect them to be good at.

Most people will see the name ‘Heavy’ and expect them to be a tank unit. High firepower, high armour, low speed. So they’ll try to put them in the centre of their battle line and have them fight at medium range. Trouble is, Heavies are TERRIBLE at medium range.

What Heavies are actually good at is two things:

a) close range fighting
b) long range artillery

Jet pack to land on top of something and bash, blow things up with the Hel at close range, and later in the game use Boom Blast + the grenade launcher to bombard from a distance. They’re like a Warhammer 40k Assault Marine who also carries a grenade launcher.

It’s just not very obvious that that’s how you’re supposed to use them!


This is how I use my heavies. The other thing I do is replace the helmet and leg armour for the Banshee sniper variants (and later the Synedrion armours) for the accuracy boost.

Depending on what special abilities you have on your heavy, and what dual class you go for heavies tend to end up functioning either as a close range shock melee trooper or a longer range artillery trooper.

This game doesn’t really fit the standard model of class types and you have to think outside the box a little. Sometimes your soldier can start out as one class and end up another once they reach level 5 and can dual class - in fact, I find this is normal. It’s really dependent on what special abilities each soldier has. Just because they start out a sniper or assault doesn’t mean they’ll end up as one.

1 Like

Early on, yeah. And even later on, if you need the heavy armor protection that comes with heavy (pun intended) accuracy penalties.

However, I tend to change my heavy into a long range threat by immediately manufacturing sniper headgear + sniper leg armor for them after starting a new campaign. I still like jump-jet, but that could be replaced as well to push accuracy even higher. And yes, it is rather stupid that you have to get rid of their class armor if you want to use them from more than 1-2 tiles away.

People have suggested removing the accuracy penalty for using heavy armor while using a heavy weapon. That would make a lot of sense. Maybe even switch the penalties from heavy armor to heavy weapons, and then make wearing heavy armor cancel those penalties. That’d penalize anyone else than a heavily armored character from using heavy weapons accurately.


As I said before, gear buffs or penalties should be connected to armor or skill points. A heavy should have better acc with more str. Heavy armor should buff heavy weapons and heavy weapons should have huge penalty without heavy gear or str.
This can work with all class and types. Skills should be weapon based too.
Ts would solve tons of problems and bring more fan to the game.
Heavy armor should have much more protection too. I can just hit for 120 with my laser rifle to the head of heavy armor enemy.


This would require new mechanic to be created just to alleviate heavy armor issue. It does not seem to be that cost effective. Easier way is just to buff Heavy Armor.

For pandorans, jumping from 20 to 30 armor is a big thing, since there are loads of player’s weapons operating in 30-40 damage per shot range.
For players, not so much, since most of the enemies (except for some odd tritons with AR/Shotgun) will hit well over that treshold (even pandoran MG hits for 50dmg, while Deceptor just for 35). This means +10 armor in general does not increase survivability that much.

Secondly combat is fast. You either kill or die. This causes offensive stats to be much more valuable then defensives. And while I can always spend XP to buff character strenght, so that it can’t get one shotted, I cant buff his accuracy.

All of this make Heavy Armor not worth using (with the exception of chest armor, due to utility). You pay too much with offensive stats to get some minor defense increase.
Personally in game I’ve produced loads of light (for accuracy) and medium (for speed) armor, but absolutely none of the heavy one. It’s especially evident in the mid game, where you get access to Technician armor (No way I’m going to trade +37% accuracy for +7/+10 armor on head/legs).

Increase the weight or perception penalties if you must, but get rid of accuracy penalties alltogether. Otherwise heavy armor will stay useless.

1 Like

I second what others have said about using the cannon at close range during the early game. There are times when I have even used the cannon later in the game that are particularly memorable. In base defense missions I have kept my heavy near the chokepoint just out of sight. When the enemies get close enough, he swings into view and shoots two of them at once with the cannon (through the first and into the second), giving two kills at one stroke. Also, with Rage Burst, Marked for Death, and the cannon you can get all the way through the scylla’s carapace.