Infiltrators are special forces, snipers, saboteurs and ninjas of PlanetSide 2.
Infiltrators can cloak, which makes them harder to see, but not invisible. The slower the infiltrator moves, the less visible he is.
There are five stages of cloak depending on what Infiltrator’s legs are doing: crouching still, crouch moving, standing still, standing moving and sprinting. Crouching still allows to become almost invisible, and it’s known as “deep cloaking”.
Each time an infiltrator cloaks or decloaks, he emits a sound that is unique to his faction. By this sound alone it’s possible to tell that there’s an infiltrator of a certain faction nearby. You may be even able to tell the direction and distance.
Cloaked Infiltrators can:
- Capture control points.
- Reload their weapons.
- Restock ammunition from Engineer’s Ammo Packs and with Ammo Printer Implant.
- Be detected by motion detection equipment.
And can not:
- Fire weapons or use any tools.
- Regenerate their health and shields in any way.
- Be spotted. And cloaking removes “spotted” condition.
By default, Infiltrators can decloak by pressing “fire”. If you find this feature inconvenient, you can learn how to disable it in the Performance Guide.
Known bug: sometimes player’s head or weapon’s magazine has a different cloaking state than body. Example.
PlanetSide 2 Cloak is reactive camouflage, it bends light around your body to match the background. Cloaked objects are not 100% invisible, there is some distortion even under best conditions.
Sprinting is the most obvious state of cloak. Our bodies become glossy and very easy to see even at a distance.
For Snipers, standing while motionless removes much of the distortion and glossy affects. Its pretty effective at a distance, but should be avoided at close range, because your human shape is obvious up close.
Crouch walking while cloaked creates minimal distortion, and it is harder to notice initially, but can be detected if the player continues to move for long periods of time. This means Stop – Go – Stop – Go movement is the safest way to cover ground.
Deep Cloak is the safest cloaking state and it has very little distortion. You can even Aim Down Sights to stop your breathing and idle animations. Even so, it is still possible for enemies to walk past your location and notice something isn’t right, like a base wall warping slightly. Or they might accidentally bump into you, and notice their movement “stopped” against something unseen.
Because cloaking does not make you 100% invisible, you need to consider how alert the enemies are towards your existence. Even deep cloak won’t save you from enemies who are hunting for you.
Being cloaked does not allow you to fire weapons, so it is possible for cloak to put the infiltrator at a disadvantage. Consider this example. Our NAC infiltrator breaches into a room while cloaked and she cannot shoot enemies first, because she must wait for cloak to fall off her body.
Even though the decloaking delay is tiny, if she had breached the room while uncloaked, she could have engaged sooner.
As an infiltrator, you want to always keep the advantage of firing first, and sometimes cloak can work against you in that regard.
Concept of Stealth
A few definitions:
- Stealth – when enemies have absolutely no idea you exist.
- Concealment – when enemies know about your existence, but cannot pinpoint your location due to Doubt.
- Doubt – confusion and misdirection. The more Doubt you can create, the faster you can transition from Concealment to true Stealth.
- Cover – allows infiltrators to break line of sight, increasing Doubt.
Its best to think of Cloaking as Concealment and not Stealth. Stalker cloak is the only option that provides enough time in Concealment, and allows to create enough Doubt to our last known position to actually use cloak effectively for Stealth instead of just Concealment.
By using Cover you create extra confusion and additional escape opportunities.
Before Stalker Cloaking existed, Cover was the only way Hunter or NAC Infiltrators could escape and create Doubt.
- If your personal shields are up, and you receive damage while cloaked, your shields will shimmer and make you clearly visible.
- Shields will produce an additional flash when they fully go down.
- When shields are down, the infiltrator will not shimmer when shot.
Shield shimmer is often used by enemies. If they catch glimpse of a cloak sprinting infiltrator at range, they will shoot at his approximate position, and even if one shot connects, infiltrator’s shields will shimmer and make chaining shots on him much easier.
Chameleon Module suit slot can remove the shield shimmer when shot, but shields will still shimmer when they go down.
Cloaking Ability Variants
The most common variant. Drains energy while cloaked, recharges when not cloaked.
Duration: 12 seconds
|Unlock cost, certs||Free||10||50||100||150||500|
|Recharge time, sec||12||11||10||9||8||7|
This cloaking variant is meant for more aggressive infiltration. It doesn’t last as long, but passively increases Infiltrator’s shields by 100, putting him on even ground with other classes, who have 500 health and 500 shields. NAC also provides small arms bullet resistance when cloaked. This resistance does not stack with Nanoweave Armor, and applied to headshots.
|Unlock cost, certs||50||100||150||200||500|
|Recharge time, sec||13||12.5||12||11.5||11|
Stalker Cloaking puts a heavy emphasis on stealth and deep infiltration. This variant spends energy when cloaked and moving, and recharges energy when cloaked and staying still, or when uncloaked. Stalkers are prohibited from using a primary weapon, and most rely on sidearms and other equipment.
Stalker can potentially remain cloaked indefinitely. It significantly changes infiltrator’s playstyle, and you can learn more about it in this detailed Stalker Infiltrator Guide.
|Unlock Cost, certs||Free||100||200||500||1000|
|Cloak Duration, sec||12||13||14||15||16|
|Recharge while Cloaked and Stationary, sec||14||13||12||11||10|
|Recharge while Uncloaked, sec||10|
You can think of it like this:
With Nano Armor Cloaking, you spend most of the time uncloaked, and only cloak to do something specific, when going for a flank or to sneak up on a specific enemy.
In contrast, with Stalker Cloaking you spend most of the time cloaked, scouting around, patiently moving to flanks, and uncloak only to do something specific, like engage on a specific enemy or to drop a deployable.
Hunter Cloaking is a healthy mix between the two, as long duration and fast recharge allow it to be used quite liberally.
Darklight Flashlight rail attachment can be used with most weapons to illuminate cloaked infiltrators. Rail Attachment slot on primary weapons is usually taken by something more versatile, so Darklights are most often installed on sidearms.
When illuminated by a flashlight, you will see your hands change color to your faction’s color. Do not ignore it, be ready to escape or retaliate.
Cover offers a certain degree of protection from Darklights. The beam will still go through walls and cover objects, and highlight us on the other side. This is not good if the room is full of enemies, but if the enemy is alone, he just might assume that everything is fine, since he cannot see the infiltrator hiding behind the cover object.
Also consider that when enemies equip a Darklight, they are broadcasting “There is a cloaked infiltrator nearby!” message to others, and moving without getting noticed will become increasingly difficult.
Darklight effect has limited range of about ~12m:
Passive Ability: Hacking
Infiltrators can hack enemy base terminals, Phalanx base turrets and Spitfire Turrets. To hack, approach the object and tap “use” – default “E” , and wait until the circle fills.
Hacked objects change their allegiance to your faction until they are destroyed or re-hacked by enemy.
Upgrade Unlock Cost: 1 / 30 / 50 / 100 / 500 certs.
Increases your terminal hacking speed by 10 / 20 / 30 / 40 / 50 percent.
The boost from upgrading this ability is nice, but not necessary. If you have spare certs lying around, there is no reason not to get first few cheaper ranks, but realistically there is zero pressure to upgrade this ability at all, let alone to full.
Infiltrators have access to:
Sniper Rifles are long range precision weapons. Semi-automatic sniper rifles are built around sustained accuracy and quick follow-up shots, while powerful bolt-action rifles can potentially kill infantry in one headshot.
Scout Rifles are precision weapons, built around accuracy and mobility.
Battle Rifles are fast firing semi-automatic weapons with decent effective range and access to some of the Underbarrel Attachments. Underbarrel Grenade Launcher is of special interest, as it provides the Infiltrator with a way to inflict light damage to vehicles and moderate damage to MAXes.
SMGs are close range automatic weapons with great hip fire accuracy.
Makes use of Stalker Cloak, which can recharge itself even while cloaked if the infiltrator remains stationary, but depletes energy when moving. Infiltrators can’t use a primary weapon together with stalker cloak. Stalkers are the best at scouting, sabotage and diversions.
Check out the detailed Stalker Infiltrator Guide for more.
“A patient Stalker will kill you when you least expect it, and disappear without a trace. They are most dangerous in small fights where they can decloak and kill you without any witnesses.
Stalker’s purpose is to deny enemy terminals and turrets, harass enemies behind the front lines, players repairing vehicles, other infiltrators and players who think they are safe to look at the map.”
There are two kinds of Sniper Rifles: semi auto and bolt actions. Semi auto are meant for closer ranges, and require 2 headshots to kill. Bolt action sniper rifles can potentially kill on one headshot.
You can find more information about PlanetSide 2 sniper rifles, as well as tips on using them, in this detailed Sniper Rifle Guide.
Dealing with enemy snipers
There are two easy ways of countering most of sniper activity – stay indoors / behind cover, or constantly move, so it’s harder to pin a headshot on you. If they miss or wound you, it’s a hint to run back to cover.
Often a missed shot by a sniper will give away his position to you, and you can either countersnipe or flank him, and kill him at close range.
Be aware of the mines and his radar detection tools, though.
Sniper rifle shots have very distinctive sound and lingering tracers for all factions, so if you hear those sounds, and see enemy sniper that’s harassing your allies light up on the minimap – be a team player and go hunt them down.
“I would emphasize just how good LA’s are at hunting enemy snipers who are in elevated positions.”
Close Quarters Combat
Here are some rules of engagement by Davregis for aspiring SMG Infiltrators:
(originally posted on reddit)
SMGs are close-ranged weapons with excellent hip fire accuracy and above average DPS in close quarters. They are generally inferior weapons on every class but the infiltrator.
Infiltrators are out of options when it comes to CQC weapons, and they can mitigate SMGs’ lack of effective range with cloaking.
What you need to know about these weapons is that an Advanced Laser Sight is mandatory. Once you have this, a scope becomes optional. In fact, if you have to ADS, it will generally mean that the target is outside your effective range.
Because of this, I recommend either a 1x scope or the HS/NV to see through smoke and ensure you know where everyone is. Try to ADS only when you can get away with doing so freely, as your damage is pitiful at midrange.
Your entire gameplay revolves around catching people unaware. Due to short time to kill and and high movement speed while hip firing, firing the first shot will normally get you a free kill against non- Heavies.
Heavies are not to be feared either; if you can tell they’re distracted or sprinting, unloading into their head will down them pretty quickly. Positioning, positioning, positioning. Be aware of when someone is reloading as well; any sort of jump will net you an easy kill.
WHEN TO ENGAGE A SINGLE TARGET
- Enemy is distracted: firing at a teammate, sprinting, reloading, looking away, etc.
- Enemy has non-Commissioner pistol (even heavies!)
WHEN TO ENGAGE MULTIPLE TARGETS
- You are in a flanking position AND they are distracted
- If ammo runs out, whip out your sidearm and pray
HOW TO ENGAGE
- Extreme CQC: aim for head while circle-strafing them. Knife if confident.
- CQC: Aim for head while strafing left or right.
- Mid-CQC: Aim for lower head while praying
- Midrange(15m+) Aim for body and pray
- Multiple targets: Aim for head, switch targets and aim for body and pray your mag lasts.
- Longrange: Scope in, pray, and unscope while moving. Do not stay scoped in.
- If you run out of ammo, do not reload. Swap to your sidearm and finish the job. Reloading enemies have netted me many kills.
IF ENGAGED ON
- DO NOT cloak and sit still
- Run behind cover, medkit, run or re-engage
- Try to headshot chain if no cover while strafing erratically
- Medkit shuffle if far away (strafe left while running left, strafe right while running right, S pattern.
- 70% of encounters vs Heavily Distracted enemies
- Chain headshots vs heavies; will let you 1v1 them given you both shoot at the same time.
You want to be doing everything you can to take people from angles they’re not looking at. Even 2 free bullets will guarantee you a kill. Do not engage multiple targets unless they’re all distracted or EMP’d. Distracted targets are your best friends, and finding them is the biggest part of CQC Infil play.
Close Quarters Sniping
A merge between two last playstyles, it involves using a “close range” bolt action rifle to score OHK headshots at ranges that would normally be considered too close.
You can learn more about this playstyle in this guide by Davregis.
Infiltrators use radar detection tools to detect moving enemy infantry and highlight their positions on the minimap as a dot.
- Nearby allies also receive this intel.
- If an ally kills an enemy detected by a Radar Detection Tools, owner of the tool will receive assist XP. If an enemy is detected by multiple tools, all owners will receive this bonus.
- Radar Detection Tools’ effects are limited to the minimap. They will not automatically spot enemies.
- You can see both allied and enemy recon darts on the minimap from any distance, but you see motion spotters only when you are in their detection range.
- Both tools can resupply from Engineers’ ammo packs.
How to avoid detection:
- Detection is based on the stance of the moving unit. Detection can be avoided by staying still, or moving while crouched.
- Sensor Shield implant will reduce the detection range.
- Cloaking does not protect from Radar Detection Tools in any way.
How to destroy these tools
- Both Recon Darts and Motion Spotters can be destroyed by EMP grenades, even through walls.
- They can also be destroyed by bullets, though it can be tricky to hit such a small target, especially in case of Recon Darts. They both have 500 health.
- Allied Recon Darts and Motion Spotters are unaffected by EMP grenades.
Recon Detection Device
Fires a dart that sends out detection pulses. If an enemy is moving during a pulse, his current position will be highlighted on the minimap.
- Firing a dart can be heard by enemies but it does not put you on the minimap.
- The device needs to be reloaded after each shot.
|Rank||Upgrade Cost||Ammo Pool||Time between pulses, seconds||Radius, meters||Lifespan, seconds|
Recon Darts trivia:
- There is a
psychopathplayer that reached BR116+ only by using Recon Detection Device.
- Recon Darts do not stick to vehicles, they will remain floating in the air.
- Recon Darts provide vertical collision for vehicles.
A deployable device that remains stationary and sends out detection pulses every 1.5 seconds.
In addition, the owner of the Motion Spotter receives real time updates on enemy movement within 20m of the device, including their facing direction.
Motion Spotters automatically appear on minimaps of enemy players when they are within detection range. However, when Motion Spotter is first deployed, there is a 3-5 second delay before it appears on the minimap, giving you a few seconds of “free” intel.
Motion Spotter Stools: You can stand on top of a Motion Spotter and shoot inside windows, which would normally be too high. Use spotters to climb places which are just slightly out of reach. Or to peek over heads of allies and shoot without fear of hitting your teammates.
|Rank||Upgrade Cost||Ammo Pool||Radius, meters||Lifespan, seconds|
Also available to Engineer. Kill infantry without flak armor. In close quarters, help set up ambushes and protect objectives and Motion Spotters. Help snipers protect their flanks.
A rather strong non-lethal grenade.
- Costs 50 Nanites to spawn with.
- Depletes infantry shields and uncloacks units affected by Minor Cloak or Sunderer Cloak Bubble. It will also decloak the Sunderer itself.
- In case of a direct hit, removes HUD, prevents shield recharge for several seconds and impairs vision.
- Destroys all enemy deployables, such as mines, C4, Motion Spotters, Spawn Beacons, etc.
- Overheats engineer’s MANA turrets.
- Enemies affected by your EMP grenades will yield assist XP when killed by other players. These assists will count towards ribbons and medals.
Generally considered useless, because even the small-scale fights in PlanetSide have ~20 players in them, and every ally on your team does a much better job being a distraction than a Decoy Grenade. Short duration makes them not so great against automated defenses either.
In addition to other Suit Slots, infiltrators have access to:
Unlocked and equipped by default.
Chameleon Module removes the shield shimmer when you get shot while cloaked and have shields. Shields will still shimmer when they are fully depleted, and then Chameleon Module will restore 20% cloak energy. Video demonstration.
Chameleon has best synergy with Nano Armor Cloaking, which reduces damage while cloaked, and often runs into ability energy issues. Chameleon is most useful in ranged combat, since at close range the enemy will be able to track you anyway.
Overall, Chameleon is not very popular, since your shield will still shimmer when they are fully depleted, and other suit slots are generally more useful to an experienced infiltrator who doesn’t get shot too often.
This article goes over your options when you get caught by an enemy at close range.