Can you hold your breath in Apex Legends? Is there any way to steady a sniper scope when lining up a shot? Two questions we saw in the TechJunkie inbox this morning. As I was going to write a sniping tutorial anyway it seemed a good opportunity to answer these questions and others you may have about sniping in Apex Legends.
Sniping is a real art in this game. Where other shooters encourage camping and finding a snipe spot and waiting it out, Apex Legends is the opposite. Like other battle royale games, the action is fluid and the ring makes sure that even if you’re in the center, you’re not sitting still for long.
That makes sniping a skill you need to work on if you like staying at range. The current game has the sniper as the long range killer but normal rifles and even some SMGs seem to be able to hit back at the same range. So not only do you need to hit a dodging target as one headshot is not a kill, you also have to avoid incoming fire.
Hold your breath in Apex Legends
In many shooters, there is a facility to either steady the scope or hold your breath to steady the scope. In the current game, you can do neither. Some scopes sway more than others and you will need to learn how each behaves. The 6x scope sways a lot while the 2x and 4x don’t seem to sway that much.
The scope on the Kraber doesn’t seem to sway much while the Longbow, Triple Take and G7 seem to sway a fair bit. The ability to steady that scope would help a lot but might make it more of a snipefest than Respawn wanted the game to be. While there are lots of confined spaces on the map, there are also lots of wide open spaces and places where a good sniper can sit in wait.
It’s a tough balance but I sit on the side of making sniping more difficult. Just like in real life, you need to practice a lot to be any good. You will also miss a lot and be killed by SMGs at an absurd distance, but that’s the game.
Sniping in Apex Legends
Sniping in Apex Legends takes skill. Nobody stays still for long and everyone is always moving. Getting to know the scope is key to sniping and fortunately, Respawn are with you. Game designer Sean Slayback sent a tweet on Feb 7 2019 explaining something useful.
we worked super hard on this feature which… we believe… is an industry first
— Sean Slayback (@slaypiece) February 7, 2019
‘#ApexLegends pro tip: the ranging marks on EVERY fullscreen (sniper) optic will ALWAYS be accurate for the rifle you’re using. Watch the mil dots reshuffle in realtime as you aim far up or down. Use the rangefinder and line up the right tick mark to tag those long range headshots.’
This means the scope will dynamically shift to give you the most chance to hit regardless of range. If you’re sniping at someone 150m away and shift to a better target at 75m, the scope should shift to give you the best chance of a hit.
Even though the scope will adapt to range, you will still need to lead your target and take into account bullet drop. The scope mechanics are good but they don’t do all your work for you.
Leading and bullet drop in Apex Legends
Leading a target in any shooter is all about time and distance. You need to aim where the target will be at the time your bullet travels that distance. How much you lead depends on the velocity of the round, the conditions, the wind and how fast the target is moving. Fortunately, you only need to worry about two of those in Apex Legends, distance and target speed.
Leading takes practice and no tutorial is going to be able to replace that. Begin by aiming in front of the target’s direction of travel and estimate where they will be when the bullet gets to them. You will gradually get a feel of how far ahead you need to aim when a character is running.
Bullet drop is supposedly accurately modeled in Apex Legends. I don’t remember enough high school physics to say for sure but bullet drop is definitely present. The further away your target is, the more the bullet will drop. That means aiming above the target to allow for that and still get a hit. Like leading, adjusting for drop takes practice but is well worth the effort.
Got any other tips for sniping in Apex Legends? Tell us about them below if you do!