Information is pre-3.0 / 3.3 SWTOR, originally posted on SWTORHUB.com.
The Scoundrel doesn’t wear heavy armor like some of the other classes so they have to rely on their tech and abilities to both mitigate and avoid damage. Abilities such as Defensive Screen and Dodge are especially helpful when stuck in a high damage situation, and provide valuable seconds allowing you to get a heal off or sneak away. When on the offensive the Scoundrel uses their stealth ability to get behind opponents and deal devastating scattergun blasts and blaster whips. Before the enemy has the time to react they have disappeared back into stealth and are ready for another strike.
The Scoundrels resource pool consists of energy. Starting at 100 this energy will be depleted every time an energy consuming ability is used and regenerates at a faster rate when more energy remains. For example having an energy level of 80-100 regenerates at a rate of 5 energy a second; while having 20-40 will have you regenerating at 2.5 energy per second. When in the thick of it the Scoundrel has two methods of speeding up the energy rejuvenating process. The first ability is Pugnacity which uses Upper Hand to speed up the recovery of energy by a small amount and should be kept up whenever possible. When you really need a shot of energy using Cool Head will dish out 50 energy over 3 seconds but has a longer cooldown, best saved for when you’re running on empty.
Scoundrels are a great class to choose for those looking at taking up the healing profession. The Sawbones tree being the specific tree you will want to focus most of your skill points in. Not only will you up your healing output by a large margin, you’ll also gain access to all new abilities. These abilities are a must for anyone speccing solely as a healer and include the Slow Release Medpac, Emergency Medpac (exploits Upper Hand), and the Kolto Cloud, an AoE heal great for PVP.
Those looking to take on a damage role will want to spec into the Scrapper or Dirty Fighting trees. If you’re a fan of sneaking up behind an enemy and unloading lots of burst damage then Scrapper is the way to go. Although the abilities unlocked like Sucker Punch and Flechette Round may be lacking in range, the tree makes up for it with an improvement to stealth level/movement speed, and huge damage increases to Backblast and Shootfirst.
The Dirty Fighting tree is shared between both Gunslingers and Scoundrels so it’s a bit of a mixed bag. Instead of burst damage it places an emphasis more on DoT Bleed Effects and poisons with abilities like Shrap Bomb and Wounding Shots. Those who have played a Warlock in a certain other game will find some familiar ground here.
The PVP playstyle for those taking the damage route will usually start out the same no matter the choice between Dirty Fighting and Scrapper. Using the Scoundrels greatest attribute stealth, sneak in behind your enemy and hit them with Shoot First, Backblast, and a Blaster Whip followed by a Dirty Kick to stun the enemy. This is where the tactics will change and while Scrappers will want to keep the fight in close using Sucker Punch and Quickshot to continue landing heavy damage, Dirty Fighters will want to use the speed boost granted by Dirty Escape to put some distance between them. They can then hit the target with DoT abilities like Hemorrhaging Blast and Shrap Bomb before stealthing back behind for another Backblast/Shoot First. Scrappers should also make use of Disappearing Act to sneak back around for another Shoot First is the target hasn’t been finished off by the first wave of attacks.
Scoundrel Sawbones specced players are a great addition to any warzone group as they have a good selection of single target, AoE, and HoT abilities perfect for any situation. Placing a double stack of Slow Release Medpack on the huttball carrier or deploying Kolto Cloud in a group of friendlies defending a door can make a huge difference and will usually end up getting you a good sum of MVP votes. However, with all of this healing power comes a lot of attention from the enemy team and the medium armor won’t keep the Scoundrel alive for long. Luckily in addition to the heals you are now using on yourself, you also have Defensive Screen and Dodge to avoid and mitigate enemy damage all together, not to mention being able to stealth out of combat.
Choose Your Destiny
It’s hard to deny that the dual blaster wielding Gunslinger with their hard-hitting long range attacks doesn’t seem like the best option to take, however let’s look at the facts. The Scoundrel’s survivability is second to none. The ability to be able to stealth and strike from nowhere is a huge advantage, especially in a pvp setting where enemies will be watching objectives for incoming troops. Add to this the ability to heal and it’s hard to think of a way that the Scoundrel could be killed.
They hit hard. Who needs extreme ranged attacks when the enemy can’t see you coming in the first place. Shoot First, Back Blast, and Blaster whip all put out big numbers and if you can’t take them out in the first attack stealth away and hit them again.
The choice between the Scoundrel and the Gunslinger is actually a lot easier than some other classes, as the two play very differently. During your quest from level 1-10 some things you should be considering are: Did you enjoy close up attacks, and hitting the enemy with your blaster? Do you want to be able to stealth and shoot the bad guy in the back with a shotgun? Do you want the option to heal? If you answered yes to the preceding questions then the Scoundrel will definitely be a good fit for you.
It’s not all white shirts and vests this time for the smuggler (although there are a few), they have actually upped the ante and are capable of wearing medium weight armor. The primary stat you will want to have on this armor is Cunning, which will provide an increase in Ranged damage/crit, Tech damage/crit, as well as Healing Power. Stacking up a good amount of Cunning will ensure your both dishing out the damage and healing it.
Secondary stats for the Scoundrel to consider are different depending on the spec. Those looking to do damage should look for pieces that add Power, Surge, Critical, and Accuracy in order to increase attack damage, critical chance, and critical damage. If you went as a healer you’ll want to look for Power and Alactrity Rating (increases casting speed) for fast and more powerful heals. Of source no matter what specification you will always want to up your endurance when possible to increase your health pool.
Taking part in PVP combat will definitely require you to pick up some PVP gear to reduce damage taken from other players and increase your own. Expertise is what you looking for here and for those in the healing profession it has the added bonus of increasing your healing power on other players. The basic recruit set is a good investment for players who have just reached 50 and comes in versions to make the stat needs of the various specs.
Han Solo had Chewbacca and your Scoundrel is no exception, albeit his crew does get a little larger from there. The healer, ranged tank, melee tank, ranged dps, and melee dps are all covered in your companions that you pick up on your travels. Depending on whether you go as DPS or Heals you will find yourself using some much more often than the others, but all are good for a chat.
Below you will find a list of all five of the Smugglers Companions along with a brief description, their strengths and weaknesses, and a link to their database entry.
The guy you love to hate, love him because he’s a very effective ranged tank, hate because he never shuts up. This is your first companion which you pick up on your origin world of Ord Mantell, and in a lot of cases the most useful. Wearing heavy Trooper style armor and carrying a big blaster rifle he’s great at getting enemy attention and holding it. Works well for both healers and those who go DPS.
The second companion your Smuggler will pick up is the Archetypal Wookie. Found on Narshadaa he’s another tanking comp, but this time a melee one. Using his vibrosword he can wade right into the thick of it and even has an ability allowing him to toss weak and standard enemies around. He’s another good choice for those looking for a solid tank, and especially for those wanting to recreate the Han Solo experience. For damage though, you may be better off sticking with Corso.
Risha is the ranged DPS of the bunch and one of the few in Republic Space to use a sniper rifle. She joins your crew after your time on Alderaan (although she’s been on the ship for much longer than that) and is a good complement for those looking to burn through enemies quickly. If you get into the heavy fights and tougher enemies however you may want to be healer spec as she cannot take a hit. The safer bet is to switch to a tank or healer companion for the really hairy situations.
This fierce Zabrak Warrior is also a member of the Mandalorians and fills the role of melee dps and melee tank quite well. You find her on the planet Balmorra about mid-way through the leveling process as she tears through an Imperial base. Although she does wear heavy armor and wield an electrostaff, the abilities of Corso Riggs and Bowdaar definitely make them a better choice for a tank. She might be one of the companions you leave on the shelf.
This failed Jedi Padawan is a Mon Calamari found in all places Hoth. He’s a smuggler just like you and comes equipped with some handy healing abilities that are very useful if you’re specced for DPS. For those who took the healing route it’s probably best to stay with one of the tank companions.
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