The link gun offers two combat modes: its primary fire launches plasma projectiles while the secondary mode unleashes a plasma cutting torch. Both modes offer decent damage. The primary fire mode has a good rate of fire but the projectiles arent tough to dodge at longer range. Use the secondary fire mode in close range. Hold the cursor on your enemy and unleash the cutting torch. Follow your enemys movements to continue to inflict damage.
Its in assault and onslaught where the link gun becomes one of the most important weapons. In fact, its probably the most important tool in onslaught. In both modes the link gun can repair certain objects, or in the case of onslaught, it can repair vehicles. For instance, in assault you can use the link gun to repair turrets or even objectives, such as the sentinels in AS-Mothership.
Without the link gun, onslaught barely exists! In onslaught, the link gun is used to build and repair the power nodes. Youll also use the link gun to repair vehicles, particularly important for the goliath and leviathan, the two powerhouse ground vehicles. Strive to have link gun ammunition at all time. You never know when you may need to repair a vehicle or fix a power node, which would spawn additional vehicles. Finally, as its name suggests, the link gun can be "linked" between players to cause more damage against enemies or build and repair faster. To link, shoot at the other player firing the link gun, dont fire at the enemy or the object youre trying to repair.
The flak cannons primary fire mode resembles a shotgun: deadly at close-range but nearly useless at longer ranges. The "ionized flechettes" bounce off of walls so its possible to damage a foe around a corner, though probably not heavily. At close-range the flak cannon is potent; at close-range its much more likely that all flak projectiles will strike the target inflicting major damage.
The weapons secondary fire mode launches a fragmentation grenade. This attack inflicts excellent damage if the grenade strikes the target directly, though you can also inflict splash damage if the detonation occurs near an enemy or enemies. You can also use the grenade to fire an attack at an enemy on higher ground. For instance, on the assault map AS-Convoy, you notice an enemy manning a turret on a ledge above you. Launch flak cannon fragmentation grenades onto the ledge to damage the enemy and turret.
What can be said about a rocket launcher that hasnt been said hundreds of times before? The rocket launcher is a staple of first-person shooter games and Unreal Tournament 2004 wouldnt be the same without it.
Its primary fire mode launches a single rocket at the intended target; hold down the alternate fire mode to cue up one, two, or three rockets depending on how long you hold down the button. Multiple rockets fire in spread unless you press the primary fire button to launch then the multiple rockets fire in a tighter spiral pattern. This is extremely handy when firing at an enemy turret in assault or a power node in onslaught.
All of the rocket launcher tactics ring true here. In deathmatch situations, aim for your opponents feet instead of their upper body. Going for their feet will likely ensure damage; even if you miss the target, the nearby explosion will inflict splash damage. If you stay on target long enough youll hear a "missile lock" sound. Fire the rocket and the projectile tracks the target.
The lightning gun is similar to the shock rifles primary fire mode...on steroids. The refire rate is slower but the instant-hit bolt packs a wallop. It wont take more than a couple direct hits (headshots are particularly damaging) against an enemy to score a lightning gun kill. Alternate fire mode serves as a zoom; hold down the alternate fire button to zoom in to a desired level.
Its primary weakness is rate of fire. The lightning gun recharges slowly. This creates a huge problem if you arent sniping. Trying to use the lightning gun in a hectic, close-range deathmatch battle is essentially hit or miss. If you have steady aim, it could work. By the time you miss one or two shots, youre likely dead. Its true role is sniping. Find a secluded corner and zoom down a hallway or across the terrain of an expansive CTF or onslaught map. Its also decent for pecking at vehicles (can even nail a driver) or power nodes at longer range.
The lightning gun served as a sniper rifle replacement in Unreal Tournament 2003...but the traditional sniper rifle is back in 2004. Like the lightning gun, the sniper rifle boasts an incredibly powerful shot against other players with a headshot causing the most damage. Use the sniper rifles alternate fire mode to zoom in on your unsuspecting target.
The sniper rifles primary weaknesses are rate of fire, close-range difficultly, and the smoke that emits after each shot. After firing the sniper rifle, a cloud of smoke appears and blocks your view of the target. This creates a lot of difficulty when trying to score follow up hits or to hit the target period. Make every shot count!