This guide is designed to help new Brink players choose weapon pairings, attachments, and uses. To that end, it will include a lot of my own observations and opinions. It's not perfect, and many will disagree, but according to the powers that be, this is better than me adding my musings to the official weapon pages. And I agree wholehartedly - I suck at summarizing.
That all said, before you can understand my rationale, there's two things you must know. First, I don't play shooters in multiplayer. Except Section 8: Prejudice, but that's recent. Odds are good I'll never play a single game of Brink with another human player. As such, my tactics have been honed against the AI, which frankly is usually more skilled than most players anyway. Second, since I'm playing offline, I don't have teammates yapping in my ear. This leads me to often run off and do my own thing. Depending on the map and other settings, this could mean defending a choke point or sniping or any number of things. I once got so pissed off at an AI I killed him with the Hjammerdeim, then switched to the Gerund and emptied both mags into the corpse. Felt a lot better after that, I did. That said, I seldom play as an Operative, and have played Medic a total of twice. Didn't care much for either one. I play primarily as an Engineer, or when the weapon demands it, a Soldier. None of this is in any way meant to prevent anyone else from being a team player, nor to tell anyone not to play medic or Operative. It's just not my style.
Now...on to the actual guide. I'm going to structure this in a simple format, and simply go gun-to-gun through each weapon in the game. Then, I'll have a roles section, and finally, a tactics section. You'll notice immediately that some weapons are missing - those are the weapons I never use, ever, at all. Two exceptions to this are the Belgo and the Richie - I didn't pay good money for all the DLC to use the Belgo and Richie. Instead, I use the Hockler and Caesar.
The following should apply to every weapon unless stated otherwise:
Default Attachments: Greeneye Scope, Muzzle Brake, Speed Sling/Holster, Drum Magazine
Replace any of these with the specific suggestions from each weapon.
Sea Eagle Pistol
Recommended Attachments: Rapid Fire
Role: Finish Drognav Targets (Sniper/Raider)
The Sea Eagle does good damage at medium to long range. The rapid fire attachment will cost you a lot of stability, so add a muzzle brake to negate it. Pair it with a Drognav and use them in tandem to snipe. 1 shot from the Drognav will do roughly 80% damage on a medium body type, 90% if engi buffed. Then, swap to the Sea Eagle and finish them off. If you're playing a dedicated sniper, this is more effective than a single shot from the Barnett (132 damage instead of 125) and uses less ammo. How? Well, the Barnett has 8 shots. The Drognav has 16 and the Sea Eagle has 20 - so at minimum you can take out 16 targets. That's 2 full waves of enemies. Due to the extra ammo, you can use this tactic with an Engineer as well - you aren't tied to a Soldier due to constant low ammo.
Recommended Attachments: Silencer
Role: Poor Man's Sniper Rifle (Raider/Support)
Wanna play a light body type yet maintain a good rapid fire weapon? Grab a Galactic or Bulpdaun SMG and use this as your backup weapon. I advise against Rapid Fire. I use it myself but I've sunk 100+ hours into Brink, so I know exactly when I can pull the trigger again and still hit the target - and I've died a LOT learning that. Anyhow, the Caesar is capable of doing the same damage at the same range as the Drognav, albeit with fewer bullets and slightly less accuracy. This is recommendeed only for a Soldier player. Other classes will burn through the limited ammo too fast.
Hockler Automatic Pistol
Recommended Attachments: High Capacity Mag
Role: Panic Button (Sniper)
As noted elsewhere, the Prima guide lists this as a Panic Weapon, and this is pretty much spot-on. As a result of this, it pairs well when you otherwise intend to use one and only one weapon for all your offensive shooting. Yep, the Barnett. Both the Barnett and Hockler have constant ammo shortages, so obviously I recommend using either only when playing a Soldier.
Recommended Attachments: [OPTIONAL] Rapid Fire
Role: Engineer's Sniper Rifle (Sniper/Support)
The Drognav does enough damage to kill a Light Body Type, even buffed once, outright. That is, if you've had the Drognav buffed by an engineer. Otherwise it won't kill anything. Needless to say, this makes the weapon somewhat useless in singleplayer unless you ARE the engineer, since the AI engi's never seem to give you a weapon buff until half way through the mission. I get Kevlar every time one passes by, but weapon boost? In my dreams! Anyhow, as noted in its section, I recommend pairing the Drognav with the Sea Eagle for 2-shot kills. As to Rapid Fire...it's useful if your enemy manages to close range really fast and you don't have time to whip out a pistol, but just remember you have it the rest of the time - and shouldn't use it the rest of the time.
Barnett Light Rifle
Recommended Attachments: Snoop-r Scope, Silencer
Role: Soldier's Sniper Rifle (Sniper)
Nothing quite says badass like "Betrayal Repaid, Sidonis." If you haven't played Mass Effect 2, buy it just to hear that line alone. Back in this universe, the Barnett fills the obligatory "One Shot, One Kill" niche required in every FPS game ever made. Due to the total of 8 bullets, pretty much no class besides the Soldier can use one. That said, each shot does enough damage that you can install a Silencer without worrying about denting your kill percentage much. This, combinded with the extreme zoom of the Snoop-r Scope allows you to pick off targets literally halfway across the map - provided the map is open enough, of course. Also, the Snoop-r Scope is useful on either rifle if you're playing as an Operative for the sole purpose of minesweeping. You could do it with the Greeneye, but the Snoop-r seems to pick them up farther away. As for your backup weapon, I recommend the Hockler. Your primary, secondary, tertiary, and even extra-gun-in-the-truck when using the Barnett should be the Barnett. The Hockler is a good choice because it's a "Panic Button" weapon. Use it only when an enemy manages to close in on your position. Which, if you're using the Barnett right, should be never.
Recommended Attachments: High Capacity Mag
Role: Marksman SMG (Sniper/Raider)
The Bulpdaun should be used as a Marksman weapon. I know, I know, yes, it's an SMG, but the Bulpdaun is more accurate at medium range than the freaking Gerund after the latest patch. Not even kidding. Depending on your body type, you should choose either the Caesar (if Light) or the Rokstedi (if Medium) as your alternate weapon. Though, if you're a Medium body type, I recommend the Galactic as your secondary anyway. The Bulpdaun also seems to work equally well for either Soldier or Engineer - the ammo is enough to survive as an Engineer, and the damage is enough to live with as a Soldier.
Recommended Attachments: Front Grip
Role: Hip-fire SMG (Raider)
With a Muzzle Brake and Front Grip, the stability of the Galactic is damn close to 100%. It almost doesn't move. At all. As a result, it makes an excellent short to medium range hip-fire weapon. However, it should only be used as a backup weapon for a Medium body type - Light should look elsewhere. It pairs well with the Rokstedi.
Gerund Assault Rifle
Recommended Attachments: Default [OPTIONAL] Underslung Grenade Launcher
Role: Long Range AR (Support/Tank)
Besides the 2 Light Rifles, none of the weapons in brink are truely suited for "Long Range" but the Gerund and Maximus are probably the closest weapons to them. As with the Maximus, you should ALWAYS fire the Gerund in VERY short bursts (If you've spent more than 5 bullets in a single trigger pull, at least 1 missed...) and ALWAYS sighted in. Do. Not. Hip. Fire. This. Gun. As long as you follow these two simple pointers, no weapon makes a better primary for a Medium Body Type. Due to the fact that you will be burst-firing the gun, an Engineer can play more to the gun's strong points than a Soldier, but it works wonders for either. I don't typically advise the UGL on this gun, but if you're playing as a Soldier, contact-detonated grenades are an ability you'll come to appreciate. A lot. Note that the UGL won't apply to your special soldier kit grenades, though. As for pairings, you have a myraid of options, but considering the Gerund's Long Range role, short range weapons are the obvious choices. For a Heavy Body Type, the Gerund makes an excellent backup to the Hjammerdeim. For a Medium, the Galactic's hip-fire capabilities compliment the Gerund well. Nevertheless, the Gerund is an AR, so it can cover short ranges as well. As such, you might consider pairing it with a Drognav. Pairing with the Maximus is ill-advised, as both guns cover pretty much the exact same range, do roughly the same damage, and have about the same amount of muzzle climb. No sense bringing 2 of the same gun.
Euston Assault Rifle
Recommended Attachments: Default, [OPTIONAL] YeoTek Red Dot Sight
Role: Heavy Body Type SMG (Tank/Raider)
The Euston used to be one of my favorite guns. Then I used the Gerund once and I've only fired a Euston twice since. It's not a bad weapon by any stretch, but suffice to say it's outmatched by any other AR at medium to long range, which is kinda AR turf. That said, when wielding the Maximus on a Heavy Body Type, the Euston makes an excellent backup weapon, giving you both a short range weapon, and a Downed Fire gun with a LOT of punch. You could also pair it with a Drognav on a Medium Body Type for a lot of punch at any range. I install Greeneye sights on pretty much everything out of habbit, but I have to admit that, given its short effective range, a Red Dot sight works here too. I prefer the YeoTek because it's the only Red Dot Sight which can be equipped on every gun.
Rokstedi Assault Rifle
Recommended Attachments: Default, [OPTIONAL] Underslung Grenade Launcher
Role: 2-shot Marksman Rifle (Support)
Dammit, why do game studios do that? Give us a perfect marksman weapon, then disable using a Front Grip on it? Stupid Bethesda... Anyhow, the Rokstedi is best used as a 2-shot Marksman Rifle. Ever seen Zombieland? Then you know what to do: Double Tap. Combinded this is 108 damage, enough to lay out pretty much anyone except buffed Heavies. Then I guess you should Tripple Tap. The UGL is something of a double-edged sword here, and depends highly on your choice of alternate weapon. The primary use with respect to the Rokstedi is to stop an enemy attempting to charge at you in mid-stride. Nothing like a grenade to the face to make you reconsider the direction you're headed in! If you're playing as a soldier, or aren't using a good close-range weapon as your alternate gun, you should probably equip the UGL. Just remember to keep your standard grenade off cooldown - only throw your Molotovs or Napalm Grenades and save the Frag and 1 supply pip to stop rushers. If you're playing an Engineer, need your grenades all the time, or just generally intend to use the Rokstedi at the longest range it can possibly hit a target at, leave the UGL in the supply post.
Maximus Light Machine Gun
Recommended Attachments: Default, [OPTIONAL] YeoTek Red Dot Sight
Role: Burst-fire, Long Range, Automatic Owning Tool (Tank/Support)
The Maximus can put 4 shots on a target at a time before trailing off the target. Those 4 shots deal a combinded total of 128 damage. That much damage can kill any enemy except a tripple-buffed Heavy. With this knowledge in mind, how many shots should you EVER fire from a Maximus in one burst? Hint: It's less than 5 and more than 3. Seriously, I know it's a fully automatic machine gun, but either burst fire it, or go on the South Beach Diet until you're a Medium Body Type, then go pick another gun. As to pairings and attachments...the options are endless. The Euston is a good choice. You could also go with the Mossington. I don't use the Mossington myself, because I find it only works well as a backup weapon for a Heavy, and in that case, my Heavy is going to be wieldding either the Maximus or the Hjammerdeim. Onbiously dual wielding shotguns is pretty redundant (and stupid) so the only potential pairing for me is with the Maximus, and I find that the Euston works better for that. On rare occaision I have been known to pair the Bulpdaun, Drognav, or even the Caesar with the Maximus, but as a general rule, if you're playing as a heavy, there aren't many good reasons NOT to use an AR as your secondary. The YeoTek is a viable option if you're not doing well controlling the Muzzle Climb and want to try using the Maximus closer to medium range. Just keep in mind that, at longer ranges, Red Dot sights provide so little zoom as to be more of a hindrance than a help, literally covering up the target so much that you can't tell if you're gonna shoot your enemy in the head or the heart.
Hjammerdeim Simi-Automatic Shotgun
Recommended Attachments: YeoTek Red Dot Sight
Role: 10-foot Sudden Death Aura, 15-Foot False Ego Booster (Tank)
First thing's first: the Hjammerdeim is not as good as you think it is when you're using it, and it's not as bad as your enemies thing when they're trying to close distance with you. For all intents and purposes, a player wielding the Hjammerdeim is fully immune to melee strikes. You are able to 2-shot any enemy that tries to close range, and then inject them with a third helping of hot lead to be damn sure nobody will be reviving their corpse during this wave. On the other hand, the Hjammerdeim is so weak against targets 15 feet away that you are literally better off shooting them with a Tokmak. Which is to say the TokMak is more or less the worst gun in Brink. You should always equip the Hjammerdeim with a Red Dot sight. At the range you're engaging targets at, a Greeneye is just going to give you a really good look at the individual hairs on their head, and Iron Sights are...well...they're Iron Sights, never use them unless you have to. Speaking of which, sighting in the Hjammerdeim isn't actually always advised. Against single targets you should always sight, as it focus the spray to ensure the maximum number of pellets contact your target. However, against a group of multiple enemies, 3 successive Hjammerdeim blasts will kill 3 or even 4 enemies if they are tightly grouped together. An excellent use for this is when you can sneak up behind 2 or more enemies capturing your command post - and blow the both to kingdom come together. I feel like this should give an extra "denied" bonus or something, but I guess Bathesda wanted a slightly more serious game than that. For your backup weapon, you have 2 main choices. The Gerund, or the Rokstedi. Sure, you have other options. The Galactic, Bulpdaun, or even the Drognav are good alternatives. However, you want weapons that have some long range punch, and more importantly, something that's pretty accurate at long range. Depending on how good you are at forcing yourself to burst fire when you should, the obvious choices are the Gerund and the Rokstedi. In fact, if you can close distance quick enough, a single shot from the Rokstedi paired with one blast from the Hjammerdeim can kill anyone.
First thing's first. What is a role? Well, let's see what a role is not. A role is not a class - it's not a Soldier, Engineer, Operative, or Medic. A role isn't a weapon or even a tactic. A role is a collection of tactics that combine to form a specific style of play. For example, Sniping is a tactic. Guarding a choke point and Disguise Flanking are also tactics. You can combine Sniping and Guarding a choke point as an engineer and form the role of a long range guard. Or, you can combine Sniping with Disguise Flanking and play the role of a Sniper behind enemy lines. Also, roles tend to apply to specific maps, and even more specifically, to specfic points on specific maps. Tactics, on the other hand, can (and should) be adapted to every map in various ways. This section is going to teach you about Roles, and if you don't undeerstand any of the Tactics used in those Roles, you can read about them in the next section. Carefull use of the Roles will make you far more lethal on the battlefield.
This role is a sniper who uses the Operative kit and his disguise ability to go behind enemy lines, and snipe the enemy from behind. For this to work you need 4 things. First, you need to play as an Operative - unlike some roles, this specific kit is required. Next, the Light Body Type is required. The reason why is the third requirement: you need to find a spot which is only reachable by a light body type to snipe from. You're looking for a wide, clear field of fire, which hopefully has either a small obstacle you can hide behind, or else, enough room that you cab back yourself up and crouch, so you can regenerate health if enemies do manage to spot and shoot you. This should also be at long range - your weapon is going to be just as effective at long range, but theirs likely won't, so stay back! Finally, use a Silencer. Using a silencer will allow you to pull of MANY more shots before your enemy can spot and supress you, and that's the name of the game here, remaining unsupressed. See the Sniper section under Tactics for more information on Supression.
With all this said, there is one small variation on this role on the Security Tower map you can use as a Soldier - which is key when using the Barnett due to the low ammo. When in the first stage of the game, playing as security, do NOT take one of the two points looking forward towards the oncoming resistance team. Instead, when you top the stairs, go straighht ahead, not to your left. You'll run through a guard tower with an MG nest, and then come to an open area overlooking the entire battlefield - from the side! Use THIS as your nest and the resistance players will be completely unable to reach you, allowing you to snipe uninterrupted at will. (NOTE: they can actually run up some pipes on the whole opposite side of the area and run around, fighting through every other defender, and eventually reach you. In my experience, the AI never makes it to you, and a human player would have to be an operative and sneak by to do this I think - your teammates would kill anyone else before they reached you.)
In this role, a player uses a high powered handgun or shotgun - most often the Caesar revolver - and rushes their opponent, firing continually as they close range, and using a melee strike to finish them off as needed. White this is an incredibly high risk manuver, it can yield a very large number of kills in a hurry, especially if the enemy team is not tightly packed together. Due to the speed required, the likelyhood of sustaining heavy damage in the process, and the habitual lack of spare ammo on both revolvers and shotguns, a Light Body Type Soldier with the Kevlar Armor upgrade is advised. This will give you the highest odds of closing range and finishing off your target - and of course living to tell about it. If playing online with human teammates, have a medic nearby give you a sprint boost before you charge off, and an Engineer upgrade your gun. Other upgrades are probably best given to other teammates as you WILL eventually due very painfully using this tactic. The point isn't to not die here though, it's to take as many enemies with you as you can before you do. One small variation of this is using the Sea Eagle instead. While not as highly damaging, the Sea Eagle has considerably less recoil than the revolver, meaning more of your shots while charging headlong towards the enemy are likely to actually hit their target, even if each does less damage. This role works equally well on any map.
This role is more or less what it sounds like - an Engineer holding a choke point. Between a gattling turret, an upgraded Maximus Light Machine Gun, 2 normal mines, a pyro mine, frag grenades, and a couple buffs from teammates, an lone Heavy Body Type Engineer can hold a choke point longer than any other class in the game. It's impressive really. That said, there are two ways to pull this off, and the no-holds-barred "throw 2 of everything in their way" method is just one solution. I'm not sure how human players act, but if they're anything like the AI (or like humans in other games, for that matter) then they have a bad tendancy of playing too much offense and not enough defense - they get stretched thin, become easy targets for snipers and that lone guy with a Gotlung going Rambo on their ass, and in the process you lose all your command posts. If human matches are anything like that, you'll often find your 2 normal mines better suited for use defending one of your command posts, and yourr Pyro Mind should be placed right in front of an MG Nest the enemy is likely to try to use. This leaves just your turret and you. If you pick the right choke point to hold, this is all you'll need. Pick one rapid fire weapon, and either a shotgun or the revolver, then use your turret to hold one spot and your weapons to hold another.
For example, as the Resistance on the Resort map, in the final stage where you're trying to hack the gate, run like hell into the room with the gate controls and clear it out. Now back ALL the way up and place your gattling turret facing directly forward so that anyone who enters the room where the hackbox is gets shot up to high hell. Now, leave the room. You can either wait outside where the boxes are stacked to the right, or inside where the boxes are stacked to the left. Security players won't extect you to the right, but your friendly operative (if it's an AI) will often hack in the room to the left, so with bots, go left. This will also protect you from enemy snipers. Use a shotgun or something with an equal short range punch to guard the left side room, and allow your turret to hold the right side room. throw your grenades constantly - they provide 2-4 seconds of area denial, and the area that security has to run through to disarm the hackbox is much smaller than the blast radius for your grenade. If they try to rush it, the grenade will not kill them, but it'll knock them down as they slide into the room with the hackbox - in an excellent position for your turret to finish them off!
A second example is playing as Resistance on the Shipyard map. As you leave the deployment area, hang a right. Place a mine in front of the tunnel exit - far enough back that operatives can't spot it until they're on it. Now, run around the corner and deploy your turret about 10-15 feet back, and right up against the wall. Enemies will be damaged by your mine, then when they try to continue, your turret will chew them up. If positioned properly, they won't be able to grenade your turret without at least taking some small amount of damage in the process, and operatives will be unable to flank it. Now, you have two options. One, you can guard the main barricade. If doing this, go plop down your pyro mine, build the barricade itself, and then head back around upstairs and shoot enemied as they approach it. An alternative option is to guard the passage just past the side barricade. If doing this, run down and place your second normal mine at the other end of the passage. Then, come back up, build the MG nest, and wait - finish off any enemy that trips your mine. In either case, placing your second normal mine or your pyro mine near the crane controls themselves is a good idea.
More to come soon!
Section to be completed soon!