Category Archives: Black Ops Tips
Tips & advice to help you in Black Ops.
One of my favorite YouTube gaming commentators did a pretty decent video covering tactics for domination on the map Grid. A lot of times Woody blabbers nonsense while he plays, this time he stays focused. I’m not a big fan of reinventing the wheel so here’s the video.
And here’s the corresponding callout map, created by INFINITE at HupitGaming, to help you out;
I found this map at HupitGaming forums, I believe it was created by a forum member named INFINITE. If she sees this I would like to thank her for creating it. It saved me a lot of work.
A,B & C: Approximate locations of the DOM flags.
S1-9: Likely sniper nesting spots & their site lines.
A1, A2, C1, C2: Attack paths.
C1, C2: The best 2 places to plant a claymore.
The key to winning any DOM game is holding down 2 flags, most importantly the B flag, usually located in the middle of the map. The B Flag on Radiation is one major choke point. With the doors closed there are two ways directly in and out of the tunnel, plus the two ladders that come down from inside the shacks at the S5 and S3 sniper spots. Once you have control of the B flag get those doors closed. Having them open makes it easier to gain control of the flag as your team has high ground advantage and can clear the tunnel fairly easy with a few well placed grenades and a couple of heavy machine gunners. Most people like the direct confrontation approach on this map and will spend a lot of match time attacking B from inside the tunnel, leaving them highly susceptible to rear attack. I have found that most of the games I’ve won on this map are the ones in which my team controls C and B. This map is also good to run Hardened on, the walls are thin and it will make it easy to take out campers and snipers.
This is not an all inclusive strategy guide for this map in domination. Just my observations on how people tend to play this map with a couple of overlooked (or understated) strategic maneuvers thrown in. Always remember to adapt to the SitRep of the match.
If you spawn at C plant a claymore immediately in the nook between the barrels (C1) right next to the C flag, this is pretty much a guaranteed kill. There is always a rusher on the other team whose going to go for the C flag on this map. If you spawn at A plant a claymore on the small set of stairs (C2) that leads into the factory. This will take care of the rushers coming from C. I got the same two rushers 5 times in one match using this strategy. Why they didn’t learn not to bunch up while running after the same claymore got them both twice within 2 minutes I’ll never know. Just one of those universal mysteries I guess.
The attack paths are simple and similar no matter what direction you are coming from (A or C). There’s the basic straight forward direct attacks right into the tunnel but while your team is doing that try running through the factory and coming up behind the enemy near the A flag. The enemy will be preoccupied with the fight in the tunnel. When you get to the stairs at C2 (claymore spot 2) pause, don’t rush around that corner. Wait a second and give the other team a chance to respawn. When you see 2 or three of them run down into the tunnel zip on in after them (it’s probably best to be running a Lightweight/Marathon class for this strategy). If you time it right you can easily kill the entire squad defending/attacking the B flag. Be watchful of any enemy in the ladder nook or the dark corner of the tunnel near it. As long as the doors above are closed your team should easily capture B (if they haven’t already). I tend to run back the way I came and catch the enemy off guard as they try to recapture the ground they just lost and give my team those extra few seconds to capture and take up defensive positions.
Attacking from the A flag is a bit trickier. Most guys try to run in and cap that C flag first. It’s best to avoid it all together. And run into the tunnel (without setting off the C flag warning by going down through the C2 path) and come up on the enemy’s 6 and wipe them out. Taking the elevated catwalk to get to C from A will give you more cover, though a sneaky git hovering on the descending stairs will cause you a problem so keep an eye out for him. Also make sure to check the switch alcove as you run by.
Once you have B make a push for C and let A fall to the enemy. Keep a couple of guys in the tunnel to guard B and have the rest of the squad push for C. With the doors closed, your guys assaulting C, and A still under your control the enemy can only come down the ladders. If timed correctly this can throw the other team off guard. Their first reaction is to try and get B back but now they are losing C too. Once they’ve lost C, panic may set in and they’ll scramble to get any flag they can. Let them have A. It’s easier to win on Radiation controlling C and B IMHO.
Most of the action takes place underground and this map is usually too hectic for snipers to set up house anywhere but there’s always that one git! The sniper in the elevated shack at S1 one is the biggest pain in the ass, he does not have too many lines of sight but the two he has are more than enough. He’ll usually hide in the corners to reload and protect himself with a claymore at the ladder. If you have Hardened on he’s as good as dead. Just shoot him through the wall when he’s cowering in the corner. The guy at S2 is another annoying git, only one real good line of site line along the lower switch catwalk but he has good cover. Run the elevated catwalk (or avoid the catwalks and run up the middle under the catwalks) to get by him and try and take him out in the shack, he will have a claymore guarding the stairs and be hiding to the left in the back of the room when he hears you coming. Alternatively, a few well placed grenades through that widow should take care of him or keep him busy enough for you to get around him. After all is said and done, if you are attacking A, the route through the factory makes more sense.
A lot of guys like to fight for the elevated room in the factory (S6.1) and take up positions at S6 and S7. Not really snipers per se, these lads are trying to control the factory path and usually only stop at the sniper spots to pop off a couple of rounds at anyone bold enough to traverse the center of the map before jumping back down into the factory. A talented player can slow the other teams progress greatly by controlling the factory in this manner.
The guy taking up position at the top of the conveyor (S8) is the dangerous one. He’s the dirty camper. He’s hanging out in the factory picking off people as they run through, taking advantage of the fact that your team is probably not communicating and trying to build up that slow and steady killstreak award to Dogs or a Blackbird. It’s imperative you warn your team about him.
These are some of the strategies I use on Radiation. They are not the only strategies for this map. I’m sure many of you have your own tactics for this map and I would love to hear about them in the comments section.
Change is good. We live, we learn, we grow, we adapt, blah, blah, blah. These are the 3 main class builds I find myself using these days.
I started running the AK-47 because it has more stopping power and the silencer makes it a much more manageable gun. Ghost Pro and the silencer keep me off the grid. Hardened lets me shoot campers through walls and Hacker Pro gives better situational awareness on the battle field. You could substitute Ninja Pro here but I move slowly and systematically around the map with Fantome so I’m quiet enough as it is. Depends on your play style, impatient types would do better to run Ninja Pro. I’ve been using Concussion Grenades on all my classes now, I got tired of getting shot by the smegger I’ve just flashed. Happens sometimes with Concussions too but it happens less.
Not much has changed here. Started running with the Reflex Sight instead of a Silencer. I like to run Spy Plane & Counter Spy these days. If the other team has an Ace getting Blackbirds I start using Legionnaire and save up my Counter Spy(s) to throw them up when he tosses the Blackbird out. I started experimenting with C4. In MW2 I was pretty good with the C4, I could leave it at a flag, run off and do my thing and kaboom anyone trying to take the flag. C4 in Black Ops is too easily seen. It’s better utilized as an extra set of close quarter grenades. Good for campers lurking behind a door.
I tried this rush class out one day, had a blast and now it’s one of my mainstays. The key to using a rush class is to get behind the enemy, deep in their territory. The silencer keeps you off the mini map and dual mags gives you a faster alternate reload but more importantly, more ammunition. I still have to unlock Warlord Pro with a grenade multi-kill, that’s why I’m using Semtex. I’ve had better luck being in the right place at the right time with a sticky and getting the multi kill than I’ve had with a grenade. Also, being behind the enemy gives me a little more time to aim a sticky properly. You could switch out the Claymore with a Tactical Insertion but I feel Tac Inserts are too easily noticed (I see them all the time, even without Hacker). Leaving a Claymore in the enemies spawning ground is priceless. I’ve started leaving Claymores near enemies Tactical Insertions; also priceless. When playing Capture the Flag you could substitute Marathon for Ninja.
Killwhore Strategy: RC-XD, Napalm, Rolling Thunder
Team Strategy: Spy Plane, Counter Spy Plane, Blackbird
I use the team strategy most days. I let loose the Spy Planes and Blackbirds as soon as I get them (HAH! like I ever get a freaking Blackbird!). I save the Counters for the enemies Blackbirds. I’ll switch to the killwhore strategy when I’m having bad days, any kill is a good kill.
LOADOUTS OF THE SO CALLED PROS
I came across this article over at IGN regarding the class setups that the “top 5″ Black Ops players use. You don’t have to go check it out, I’ll sum it up for you. They all use the FAMAS. Just 5 privileged kids, playing all day with what many consider to be a noob gun. I’m not saying that the FAMAS is not a good gun or that you should not use it, I’m just saying the article is a waste of time and internet space. I really didn’t need IGN to point out the glaringly obvious. For me the FAMAS runs out of ammo too fast making running with Scavenger a necessity for my play style.
I’ve changed my Fantome class a little bit. I now equip him with an AK47 and a silencer. I like the extra stopping power the AK47 gives me and the silencer reduces muzzle flash and makes it a lot easier to handle. Without the silencer I would not be able to hit the broad side of a barn with this gun. I’ve replaced Warlord Pro with Hardened Pro on Fantome as well. It’s easier to take out a camper by shooting him through a wall. People say the less flinching aspect of Hardened pro helps out in 1v1 battles but I don’t notice much of a difference.
I’ve also started using a rush class. I call him Zippy. Lightweight/SoH Pro/Marathon. Equipped with a silenced AK74u. I’ve gotten quite good at getting into enemy territory and causing a bunch of havoc before they even realize I’m behind them. I’m thinking about trying Warlord on this class and adding Dual Mags for the extra ammo.
The previews look pretty good, the new Zombie map has me intrigued, and that’s coming form a guy whose probably spent a whole 30 minutes playing the zombie mode of Black Ops. I heard in interviews that these new maps are more “sniper friendly”. I’m not sure what that means, how can you get more friendlier than one shot one kill even when firing from the hip? The recent patch had some sniper fixes in it. I hate it when they patch things like this and don’t tell you exactly what they did. I’m not a big fan of snipers in multi-player shooters, I think they unbalance the game. I have to unload an entire clip into someone just to get them into Second Chance while his buddy can no scope me from 30 feet away and I’m dead. So I’m a little worried that they may have made sniping easier and the new map will be inundated with the little buggers.
The new maps look pretty good and I am looking forward to them.
JUST HAVE FUN WITH IT... But learn the maps too.
I hopped onto Black Ops the other night for the first time in two weeks. You know what? I had fun. I even made 2 new friends. I played Ground War all night into the wee morning hours. Some games I did really well and other games I was terrible, but I did not rage quit or get even remotely frustrated. I just chugged along, laughing and joking with my new found friends and having a good time. It is a game after all.
A fella named Tim was nice enough to leave a comment on one of my previous Black Ops posts. Tim seems to think he’s the worst Black Ops player ever because no matter what he does–follow on line advice, combat training, etc.–he keeps getting fragged 15 times with only 5 kills to notch on his gun. Tim feels that other players just seem to look his way and he’s dead.
Well Tim, you’re not the worst Black Ops player, you should have seen a couple of the games I had last night! Tim, the reason those players can just look your way and you’re dead is simple. THEY KNOW THE MAPS.
Tim, you don’t know the maps my friend.
Of all the gaming advice I’ve read and followed for Black Ops none of it is as important as learning the maps. Don’t run blindly, try shooting from the hip, blah, blah, blah. LEARN THE MAPS. Everything else will fall into place once you learn the maps. Learning the maps does not mean you know where the Temple is on Jungle. Learning the maps means that you know the Temple area in Jungle is a good place to call in care packages, that there is a sniper spot on top the generator in WMD, that the path through the Mansion in Villa is the “road least traveled”, that placing a claymore in the room that leads out to the catwalk on Summit and on the small set of stairs going into the Factory on Radiation will almost guarantee a kill, that going up the middle on Launch is usually safer than circling the map. Learning the maps means knowing all the camping spots, the sniper spots and their lines of site, knowing all the choke points and ambush spots. This information comes subtly to me now, almost subliminal. Gently tugging at the tendrils of my thoughts when I’m “in the zone” and nagging at me when I’ve overlooked them.
What’s the best way to learn the maps? I don’t know what will work for you. We all learn in different ways. I’ll tell you what worked for me. First, you have to be having fun. Forget about stats, about kills, about deaths, about assists, even forget about winning and losing. It’s a recreational game, not a job. If you’re having fun consequently you will learn faster. Mute all the asshats who take the game far to seriously right away, they are too much of a distraction.
OBSERVE AND ABSORB WHILE HAVING FUN
When I was learning the maps I played Domination games 24/7. People’s movements are predictable in Dom games and you don’t have to worry about your 6 as much. Makes it easier to observe and absorb whats going on around you. Everyone has the same 2 goals, capture those flags and keep you from recapturing them. Simple.
I never ran with my team, I’d duck into a corner to avoid that lucky Tomahawk throw from across the map, and then set out slowly and methodically behind my team. Watching the routes they took. Noting where they got killed. Watching for the routes the enemy’s rushers took and thinking about how I can get behind them. I paid attention to my kill cam, how I died, why I died and how I could prevent it from happening again.
I sacrificed the win during these times of observation. I played no objective. I stuck to the perimeter of the map, circling it, learning it. Making note of the camper spots, how to avoid them, how to effectively attack them. I paid close attention to the routes the enemy took to get back to the objectives. I did not give chase. I sat back. Counted. Made mental notes of where and if they bunched up. I looked for effective choke points to ambush them next time. I’d place claymores along their routes and made mental notes of which placements were the most lucrative. Once I could circle the map with a proverbial blindfold on I ventured through its center, finding the safest routes through trial and error.
You have to learn the maps. You have to learn how real people play those maps. I don’t believe you can do this in Combat Training. You can improve your reflexes in Combat Training but those bots don’t move the way real people will move in an objective based game. You have to learn the maps. Map designers forge these maps with ebbs and flows that people will naturally follow. People will use the same routes and generally the same tactics they use in Domination in virtually every other game mode. The difference is playing Domination will make it easier for you to learn because everyone else is preoccupied with the objectives.
Observe and absorb. Look for predictability. Snipers hustling to their favorite sniper spot. I assure you, 9 times out 0f 10, if you fragged him at that spot, he’s on his way back to it. Look for Rushers running the same path again and again. Remember that Claymore spot on Radiation I talked about earlier? I got the same 2 Rushers 5 times each in one Dom match last month, just by placing a claymore in that spot every time I re-spawned. Knowing the map is also about knowing your enemy. This will vary from game to game and lobby to lobby. Even after you’re familiar with the basic traffic flow and habits of a particular map, always take the first few moments of a game to sit back and really study the enemy.
Sure, don’t sprint everywhere (but do sprint across open expanse of a map if you can’t avoid it), stick to cover, keep the edge of the map to your back (especially in FFA games), boost up the difficulty in Combat Training to sharpen your reflexes, gradually turn the look sensitivity up to further sharpen and speed up your reflexes. Do all these things. None of it will help you one bit if you don’t know the maps.
I’m not a 1337 player, not by a long shot. I got frustrated just like you do. I thought I sucked because I just was not as reactive and quick as the other players, and that is somewhat true. I thought that the only way I’d get better was if science found a way to give me the reflexes of a 12 year old. When I finally stopped worrying about how good I was at a silly game I started to notice things I had not noticed before when I was all preoccupied with trying to aim faster and see things quicker. I noticed the patterns of the maps, the patterns of the players. Then I started to get better. I could not get better before because I didn’t know what I was looking for. I’m not a 1337 player, but I can hold my own.
Just sit back, relax and have fun playing the game. Just pay attention to the things I’ve mentioned while you are playing. Observe and absorb. Keep at it and you’ll know the maps in just a few short gaming sessions.
I found this map at HupitGaming forums, I believe it was created by a forum member named INFINITE. If she sees this I would like to thank her for creating it. It saved me a lot of work.
STAGING GROUNDS: These two spots on the map are the safest places to call in your Killstreak packages.
THE HIGH GROUND: The most important area of the map to control. If you plan on keeping the B flag you must own this shack and the North Path behind it.
A,B & C: Approximate locations of the DOM flags.
S1-5: Likely sniper nesting spots & their site lines.
A1-C4: Attack paths
The key to winning any DOM game is holding down 2 flags, most importantly the B flag, usually located in the middle of the map. But on Jungle you will not hold onto B unless you also control the High Ground above it.
Given this, it is best to control C and B as C has easier access to both B and the High Ground above it. If you start at A, you’re initial instinct may be to run everyone to B, while sending a couple of guys up the C4 path to the High Ground. A more radical strategy would be to send two “sacrificial lambs” to preoccupy the enemy at B and the High Ground while the rest of the team flanks along the A2 path to get and hold C. Your main concern while performing this flanking maneuver will be the S2 sniper spot at the Pier. If the sniper has chosen to take up position on the top of the Pier, he will be easily spotted by one of your team. However, it’s the sneaky git with ghost hiding under the bridge who poses the most danger as he is pretty much invisible. If he is smart, he will wait for you to pass and take you all out while you are trying to capture C. So be sure to pop off a few silenced rounds into the brush under the Pier as you pass by it. Your other concern would be the C3 path that leads directly to the C flag but if you perform this maneuver early and fast enough, the other team should be preoccupied with trying to get B. Once at the C flag, your main worry is the sniper at S1. Sending someone up after him is probably best as he will be too lethal with a well placed grenade. The rest of you need to worry about the guys controlling the High Ground, send a barrage of grenades and flashes across the Small Bridge immediately, with at least one guy covering the C2 path. If you have 3-4 with you, you should be able to cap that flag pretty quick. Next I suggest you take up defensive positions at C so you can regroup and fight back the enemy as they try to reclaim it. If you are lucky, the other team may have got cocky and sent someone for A. Let them have it, now they will spawn there and will have to leg it back to C. This will give you some time to capture the High Ground, control the North Path and mount an attack on B.
The High Ground is easy enough controlled. A couple of guys in the shack can easily dispatch any enemy coming for B along the A3 path. Placing a claymore along the North Path will temporarily secure it. If anything it will give one of the guys in the shack fair warning that an attacker is coming when he hears his equipment is destroyed. Leaving a “lingerer” back there may be a more quantifiable strategy. Someone with a grenade launcher and a China Lake as a secondary can easily hover, behind the shack along the C4 and C1 paths and control the area. The guys in the shack will need to keep a vigilant eye out for snipers at S3 and S5. It’s a good idea to pop off a few shots at S3 every now and then to see if you get a hit marker.
While it is possible for a skilled player to hold down the sniper spot at S1, it is also the first place people will look for you on this map. Placing one of your Mortars here will almost always guarantee you a kill, sometimes even two! Be careful of snipers hiding in the brush at S4 too. Especially if you are flanking the A2 path to get to the High Ground.
When mounting an attack on B from A, I’ve had a reasonable amount of luck by flanking along the A2 path and cutting across and under the S1 sniper spot. The enemy defending B is usually preoccupied with allies coming along the A3 path and will stay focused on this path, making them easy targets from behind.
These are some of the strategies I use on Jungle. They are not the only strategies for this map. I’m sure many of you have your own tactics for this map and I would love to hear about them in the comments section.
I’ve hit prestige for the last time in Black Ops. Prestige 3, I’m done. Only did it to 3 to get a theme going with my gamertag. I’m not saying I’m fed up with Black Ops. Not at all. But from now on I’m playing strictly for fun. Gonna get all my favorite pro perks back and I’ll be right as rain.
THE KILL/DEATH RATIO EXPERIMENT
I decided when I hit second prestige that I would do an experiment regarding whether or not focusing on K/D ratio adversely affects team game play for an average player such as myself. At the start of this experiment my K/D was an abysmal .69 and my win/loss was .90 or so. Keep in mind I play mostly DOM games and, before I began this experiment, had no problem trying to capture 10 or more flags during a game. Also keep in mind that I have quit more games because of lag and a$$hats then I care to remember.
The rules I set for myself were simple. Quit all games that would adversely affect my K/D. These included games in which I zoned in late only to hear the sky full of enemy aircraft and enemy dogs running around and my standing rule about not playing with a$$hats and Captain Sobels (those demoralizing, feckless, silver spooned gits that do nothing but moan and gripe about how much the team sucks from the safety of their parents basements) always stands. I would cap the first flag and spend the rest of the game circling the map, clearing out enemies guarding the objectives, campers, looking for the flankers, and guarding our flags. I would only take another flag if I had a couple of team mates with me or I was fairly sure the enemy was fully occupied on the other side of the map. When I first started this experiment I held myself strictly to these rules regardless of winning or losing. In time though my basic nature of comradeship took hold and I would put my K/D at risk for the sake of a reasonably good team.
I finished this experiment with a K/D of .82 and a W/L of .61
From my personal experience I have to say that in objective based games such as DOM, the player that is unequivocally preoccupied with his K/D will be detrimental to the team. I’m not saying that I didn’t help in a lot of games, I did. But I had a good team with me on those games in which I was most useful with these tactics. They did a great job of capturing flags while I did a fairly decent job of shooting the enemy before the enemy shot them! Most games though I just ended up feeling like I could have done more for the win. Then there were those games in which I was positive nothing I could have done would’ve helped because we were just that bad collectively–some people just don’t mesh together as a team.
But this experiment taught me a lot more. For starters I have a new favorite class.
Ghost Pro, Hardened Pro, Hacker Pro
Galil with Red Dot, STRELA, Frag/Flash/Claymore
I always used to think that the iron sites on the guns were good enough, then I popped the red dot on the Galil and noticed a significant increase in accuracy over a few games. Remaining completely hidden by using a silencer on this build is less important as most of the time I’m constantly on the move, flanking and coming up behind the enemy. If an enemy saw me it was visually and he was more than likely behind me. I’m still not sure about the “less flinching when shot” aspect of Hardened Pro; people say it helps on 1v1 fights so I’ll let it have a placebo effect on me. I’m more interested in it’s basic bullet penetration aspects. There’s many places on many maps in this game where you can kill the most predictable of campers simply by shooting through a wall in the corner of a room.
During my first few runs up the ladder I would get the Famas as soon as it was available, but this time my patience wore thin with the M16. I tried the Enfield as soon as it became available and found I like it much better than the Famas. The Famas runs out of ammo too fast for me and using Scavenger with it is a must. The Enfield’s iron sites are perfect and equipped with a silencer it’s deadly in my hands, I’ve enjoyed using this gun so much that I have kept it equipped on my Legionnaire class even though the tried and true Galil is available for me now. I also started using the reflex site on the Commando and found this combination to work well but this may have more to do with me not liking the red dot on this gun. There is something about the way it’s attached to the body that bothers me.
I learned to be a little more cautious in DOM games. To have a little more self-preservation does not hurt. But you have to work with the team for the win and compensate for their shortcomings. A lot of people playing DOM seem to play it the way I did during this experiment and if everyone on your team is doing this you will not win. Many of the other things I learned are just reinforcements of things I already knew I should be doing but for some odd reason always tend to forget in the heat of battle. Things like not sprinting everywhere, only fools rush in to objectives, etc. The one thing I am sure of is that focusing so much on all these meaningless statistics made the game a lot less fun for me.
The most gratifying games for me are the ones in which we win or lose by 30 points or less. I have the most fun in this these games, right up until the obnoxious Captain Sobel on the losing team inevitably bitches about his team sucking as he backs out of the lobby. But you know what they say? Some cause happiness wherever they go. Others whenever they go.