Spotting enemies is an important mechanic. It identifies the enemy by saying their class out loud, you become able to see enemy’s name and target triangle – “dorito” – above his head.
If enemy’s shields are down, and you are within ~10m, you will also see their health bar.
It also shows their position and facing direction on the minimap. “Spotted” condition lasts for 10 seconds.
There are three ways you can spot enemies:
- Manually – by aiming at the enemy and pressing Q. Your character will say something like “Spotted an enemy heavy!”. Enemies will be able to hear your voice, and determine your faction by it, so make sure to manually spot enemies only when they already know where you are, or you’re in no danger from them.
- There’s a “3D spotting” mechanic, meaning that even if the enemy is partially hidden by cover, you’ll still be able to spot them.
- You can spot enemies through smoke.
- You can’t just spam Q everywhere. If you quickly press Q 5 or 6 times within a couple of seconds, the spotting ability will go on cooldown for several seconds.
- You can’t spot cloaked infiltrators. If an infiltrator is spotted while uncloaked, they can cloak to remove “spotted” condition from themselves.
- Using Counter-Intelligence implant, which spots enemies that damage you, as long as it’s not with a suppressed weapon.
You give away your position and faction with voice when spotting an enemy, so it’s not recommend to just spam spot at everything you see.
Uses of spotting
- Spotting a far away enemy lets you know their class to figure out the best way to engage.
- To warn your allies about an enemy that only you seem to notice.
- To check if a player that you suddenly encountered is an enemy or an ally.
- Spotting a fleeing enemy will help you chase them down.
- When an ally kills an enemy spotted by you, you gain a small amount of experience, so when it’s safe, spam spot at any enemy you see.
- Do NOT spot enemies when you’re deep behind enemy lines.
- Do NOT spot an enemy as you sneak up behind him. Seems obvious, but there is no count to how many players were killed just because they gave a warning by spotting.
Interesting mechanic: if a spotted player dies, and gets revived shortly, they will continue to be spotted until the timer runs out. Tested by /u/datnade