This guide really should have been called Man Against Machine. ‘Cause there is no class in Battlefield 4 multiplayer that’s as well suited to destroy enemy tanks, jets, choppers, boats, and so on, as Engineers.
But the class has a less destructive side, too. Engineers make sure the team’s vehicles are in a state to drive, and aircrafts in a state to fly.
The Role of the Engineer
When you play as an Engineer, you’ve got two main tasks – next to the killing-as-many-hostiles-as-possible business, of course:
- You destroy enemy vehicles.
- You fix your team’s vehicles.
To solve both of these tasks, you’ve got a wide selection of tools to choose from. I’ll get into more detail on these a little later.
A given for you to solve your tasks is sticking close to your team and squad. An Engineer who’s out solo raiding is no good to his team.
Let’s take a look at your main weapon before we do anything else.
Engineers – Your Main Weapon
Video Break: Engineer Class Guns Guide:
A PDW is often referred to as a hybrid between a submachine gun and an assault rifle.
Here are some of the models to choose from (as they become unlocked):
These weapons have a decent range, and because of the compact design they’re excellent for close quarters combat.
I just want to put it out there: you do have other weapons to choose from. You can use carbines, shotguns, and marksman rifles.
You’ve got a load of different attachments to choose from, and you can equip your weapon with all of them (just not all at once).
I’m not gonna give you any specific advice on which to use and not to use, with one teensie exception: silencers.
As an Engineer, you’ll be engaging in a lot of sneaking. You’ll be placing mines in hostile areas. And you’ll be creeping up on the enemy’s tanks and other vehicles.
When this is the case, a suppressor will make it a lot more difficult for the other team to spot and hear you.
Your Tools – Literally
Like I said, your tasks as Engineer are:
- To break stuff.
- To fix stuff.
To help you along the way you can use two of the following toys:
In the hands of skilled and clever Engineers, these gadgets are capable of causing enormous destruction, and are game changers.
Levelling the Playing Field
A lot of times, launchers are the best counter measure against enemy vehicles and aircraft. In Battlefield 4 online, you’ve got several models to choose from.
Against tanks, boats, and other terrestrial vehicles, you’ve got no less than five different launchers at your disposal. I’ll give you a full rundown shortly.
But before I do that, I’ll have to say this: the list below is sorted by how much damage a projectile from each individual launcher can cause – starting at the bottom.
1. MBT LAW
The MBT LAW (which stands for Main Battle Tank and Light Armor Weapon) is a so-called fire and forget weapon.
You’ll only need to point it in the direction of a vehicle, and then fire. The projectile will finish the job for you.
This one does the least damage of the five launchers. But don’t forget that it will lock onto laser designated targets, which makes it very easy to use.
2. FGM-148 Javelin
The Javelin fires guided missiles. The missiles do a bit more damage than MBT missiles. But the Javelin isn’t all fire and forget – you’ll need to keep your aim on the target until the missile’s hit it.
3. FGM-172 SRAW
The FGM-172 SRAW (Short Range Assault Weapon) does a larger amount of damage than the launchers above. In turn, it’s also harder to use.
The SRAW fires wire-guided missiles. This means that when using the launcher, you’ll need to guide the projectile to the target by using the aim point on your HUD.
This launcher can also lock on to laser designated targets. When it does, you won’t need to guide the projectile manually.
4. MK153 SMAW
Out of all the Battlefield 4 launchers, the SMAW (Shoulder-launched Multipurpose Assault Weapon) does the second most damage.
It’s not as mean as the RPG, but it fires its projectiles in a straighter line.
To use it, you’ll usually aim the same way you do with a rifle.
The RPG is the hardest launcher to use. It can’t lock onto a target. And the projectiles follow a trajectory with more curvature than the SMAW.
The upside is that no other launcher will make life as miserable for your opponents.
You’ve got two launchers to choose from if your targets are airborne:
1. FIM-92 Stinger
The Stinger’s a fire and forget launcher. You place the aim point on the aircraft, wait a little while for it to lock-on, and fire.
The missile will find its way to the target on its own.
2. SA-18 Igla
The Igla (which means needle in Russian) is a little harder to use than the Stinger.
You’ll need to maintain the lock-on (that is, keep the aim point on your target), ‘til the missile hits it. In other words, this isn’t a fire and forget weapon.
But, the Igla can also lock onto laser-marked targets.
Laser Designated Targets
“How does a target become laser designated?”, you may ask.
Someone’ll have to laser paint a target. When it’s marked, Engineers with launchers will be notified via an icon onscreen.
- The Engineer’s able to laser paint targets himself – so long as he’s sitting in the third seat of a tank or the second seat of a scout helicopter.
- Additionally, recons are able to laser paint hostile vehicles with the portable laser designator.
AT as AA (Anti-Tank as Anti-Air)
This guide definitely can’t go without talking a little bit about the fact that you can use both the SMAW and the RPG to shoot down choppers and jets.
But then you’ll need to take the projectile’s travel time into consideration. With the RPG you’ll also need to compensate for the curved projectile path when aiming.
Here’s how to do it:
1. The Trick
– Don’t shoot where it is. Shoot where it’s gonna be.
This little quote shows up in a lot of my Battlefield 4 guides. It belongs in this one, too.
If you want to succeed in shooting down jets and choppers with the SMAW or the RPG, you’ll need to estimate – otherwise known as ‘guessing’ – where the target’s gonna be once the projectile arrives.
This is the point you need to use when aiming – not where the aircraft is when you fire your rocket.
2. Placing the Aim
Place your aim a little way ahead of the jet or the chopper, in the direction it’s moving.
– How far ahead?
That depends on the aircraft’s speed, and your distance to it. The further away the target is, the further ahead of it you’ll need to place your aim.
3. The RPG Challenge
With the RPG, you’ll need to place the aim in front of the target AND a smudge above it. The reason for this is the projectile’s considerably more curved trajectory.
The further away the target is, the higher above and further in front of it you’ll need to place the aim.
Ain’t no other trick to it…
Back to the Ground
What I’ve just run through with you goes for both terrestrial and aquatic vehicles as well.
Do you want to shoot a moving tank or boat with the SMAW or RPG?
Then you’ll need to take travel time (and the projectile drop of the RPG) into consideration, as long as the target’s a way away.
More Launch Tips – Stingers and Iglas
Jets and choppers come with counter measures, such as flares. Your missile will usually miss the aircraft if the pilot sets his defence mechanisms into motion.
Here’s what you can do to make sure you’ll hit:
1. Aim for the aircraft
Place the aim point above the jet or helicopter.
2. Wait for the lock-on alarm
Your launcher will indicate what it’s doing by means of sound signals.
- Short beeps will tell you that the launcher’s trying to lock on the target.
- A solid, coherent tone indicates a successful lock. Now you can fire your missile.
But you’re not the only one who’ll be given a warning, champ.
When you’ve locked on target, the pilot onboard will also be warned.
She or he will first hear a lock-on alarm. Another alarm goes off when you fire your missile.
The pilot can counter your attack by releasing flares, for example. But on their part, this should not happen before your missile’s actually been fired.
And that’s where a lot of pilots miss a turn. They don’t know how to differentiate the lock-on alarm from the missile fired alarm.
As soon as the lock-on alarm goes off in cockpit, they release their flares.
Dun dun duuunnn. I give you: your golden chance.
As soon as you see the pilot release the flares, you fire your missile. And because it takes a couple of seconds for the flares to reload, your missile will reach its target before a new counter measure’s ready to go.
Usually, it’s the rookie pilots that fire off their counter measures too soon.
Experienced pilots know that they need to wait for the missile fired alarm to go off before they can use their flares.
So if you’re going up against weathered pilots, this is what’ll usually happen:
- You get a lock-on.
- You fire off your missile.
- The pilot releases the counter measures at the right time.
- The missile misses (no pun intended).
- The pilot has enough time to get out of range while you’re stuffing a new missile into your launcher.
So, what to do instead?
Pay attention to the sky.
You’re rarely the only one out there to be chasing hostile aircrafts. Your team’s jets, choppers, and other Engineers usually make hostile pilots release the aircraft’s counter measures, too.
And that’s your chance.
As soon as you discover an enemy aircraft being forced to use counter measures because of a co-player, get your launcher out. The chance of your missile hitting its target just increased considerably.
Here are some more tips:
- The lock-on alarm stresses out a lot of pilots. You can scare a lot of them off, simply by locking onto their aircrafts. They’ll fly away, instead of attacking you.
- Try holding the lock-on for a short while before firing the missile. You may stress the pilot out just enough to make him release his counter measures prematurely.
- The closer you are to your target, the less time it’ll take for the missile to reach it. This means you may have time to fire a second missile before the pilot has time to release a second round of counter measures.
- Work with another Engineer. Engineer #1 sends off a missile, making the pilot utilize his counter measures. Engineer #2 shoots a second missile immediately after the pilot was tricked into using his defense mechanism.
SMAW and RPG Tips
The most pressing question on a lot of fresh Battlefield players’ lips is how to effectively end a tank’s days with the SMAW or an RPG. I’ll get to that in a little while.
But before we get there, I’ve got some other tips on how to use these two launchers:
- Both the RPG and the SMAW are excellent party breakers. Is a room filled to the brim with hostiles? Two or three rockets into that room and it’ll pretty much be emptied of opposition.
- In need of an alternate route to a target? Use the launcher to punch holes in brick walls and buildings.
- Sitting in the gunner seat of a tank? Jump out of it when you face another tank, and contribute to the takedown by means of your launcher.
- A tip for that last one: you can determine your exit from the tank for yourself. Wherever you point the tank’s gun is where you’ll exit. Make sure to jump out somewhere your friendly tank provides cover from the hostiles for.
Mines may just be the ultimate weapon against your enemy’s vehicles. Three mines is enough to send a tank and its crew to the digital beyond. And you don’t even have to aim.
But a lot of the players you’ll meet online in Battlefield 4 will have learnt their lessons after countless unpleasant meetings with mines in Battlefield 3. That’s why you’ll need to be just a little bit tactical about using them.
Here are some tips:
- Mines work well in groups of three – any more than this will usually be overkill.
- Place the mines close to each other – don’t spread ‘em over too large an area. You can also place them on top of each other.
- Don’t put your mines in the middle of the road. Place them on the edges instead – that’ll make it harder for hostiles to spot them.
- Try hiding the mines as best you can. You can place them among debris or rubble. You can hide them in bushes or under trees that are blocking the road.
- You can fell trees for yourself by using a launcher. Then you can hide the mines among the leaves.
- Hide the mines behind objectives, in the shade, or in darker areas.
- Place a couple of mines in front of a vehicle you’ve chosen not to use. If a teammate wants to use it – no problem. If a hostile steals it, however, his ride won’t be particularly long.
- Are you able to move unnoticed up to a tank? Place three mines behind it. When it backs up, it suddenly won’t be a very useful piece of vehicle anymore.
The Repair Tool
As Engineer, you can save all the vehicles your team controls from the junkyard. Jets, choppers, tanks, boats, and so on need to be in a pretty critical state for you to be unable to repair them.
Here are some tips on how to use the tool more effectively:
- You should avoid using vehicles if you don’t have the repair tool with you – unless you’re joined by another Engineer who does.
- You can, of course, repair your own team’s vehicles. But you can also destroy the other team’s vehicles by means of the same operation. The prerequisite here is that at least one opponent is situated inside it.
- You can repair some choppers while they’re airborne. Just point the tool towards a part of the frame, and fix away.
In addition to this, you can use the repair tool in tank-nappings. Here’s how it works:
- Sneak up on a hostile tank.
- Take out the repair tool and use it on the tank.
- The driver discovers what you’re doing, and jumps out to kill your character.
- As soon as this happens, you jump into the tank and drive off.
The best exit here is obviously if you’re able to point your cannon towards the driver you just tricked and send a lethal shell his way.
Two things need to be in place for your stunt to work:
a) All the hostiles onboard the tank need to be out of it before you can jump on in.
b) You have to make sure – before getting into the driver’s seat – that you’re not damaging the vehicle so badly it’s not in a useable state anymore.
Leaving a Tank
More often than not, you’ll need to jump out of a tank in order to repair it. If there are hordes of hostiles nearby, this isn’t an entirely risk-free operation.
Remember that you can use your tank as cover.
Here’s how to exit tanks in a fairly safe way:
- Scan the area while you’re still sitting inside the tank.
- Pinpoint your enemies’ locations.
- Point the tank’s weapon to the safest area – so where hostiles AREN’T sitting.
- Jump on out.
Here’s how it goes: you’ll exit the tank wherever its weapon is pointing.
The EOD Bot
As Engineer, you may choose to use the EOD (explosive-ordnance disposal) robots. This is a handy and remote controlled little baby.
The bot has a moveable arm attached to it. At the end of the arm there’s a little tool. With it, you can do the following:
- Plant and disarm charges on M-COM stations.
- Repair your team’s vehicles.
- Destroy the other team’s vehicles.
- Kill hostile characters.
But you can use it for other things, too:
The Spy Cam
You can use the EOD as a motorized spy. The bot’s got a camera.
Drive it in amongst opponents to get an overview of their numbers and positioning.
The Escape Hatch
This little trick’s best used in Rush.
Perhaps the other team’s got you cornered, right?
If this happens, launch an EOD. Drive it over to an M-COM station. Once it’s there, let it plant a charge.
This should be enough for a fair share of the opponents to run to the station in order to disarm the charge. And that may just make it easier for you and your team to find a way out of the deadlock.
If a hostile vehicle’s got you stuck, you can try maneuvering the bot over to it, and destroy the vehicle.
How to Kill a Tank
Tanks are a kind of vehicle you’ll encounter often in Battlefield 4 multiplayer. They’re terrifying beasts. And they can be hard nuts to crack – literally.
You can bombard them with LAWs, SRAWs, and Javelins. The missiles from these launchers unfortunately don’t do a whole lot of damage to a tank, though. You’ll need to fire a lot of rounds to make a tank useless.
There are two better options: the SMAW and the RPG.
Both of these weapons will do more damage than the other three launchers.
The downside is that neither the SMAW nor the RPG are fire and forget weapons (as long as a tank isn’t laser-painted). You’ll need to aim in order to hit.
And not only do you need to hit – where your missiles hit the tank matters, too. It’s time for….
A tank is an armoured vehicle – not just in real life, but in Battlefield 4, too. A Battlefield 4 tank is armoured, you know, to protect it from players like you.
But the armour isn’t equally strong all over the beast.
On a standard tank – without upgrades – the armour’s positioned like so:
- The front: the most armour.
- The sides: the sides are less protected than the front.
- The rear: this is the Achilles’ heel of a tank. In this area, there’s not a whole lot protecting the tank from incoming missiles, rockets, and shells.
Ranged by vulnerability, this gives us a target list looking like so:
- The rear.
- The sides.
- The front.
In other words: if you want to destroy a tank as quickly as possible, you should always choose its rear as your target.
In Battlefield 4, DICE has also given tanks a more vulnerable zone up top. This means it’s easier to take out a tank if you’re situated above it, like on the top of a roof.
OK. So we’ve established that a tank is most vulnerable around its ass.
There’s another thing aspiring tank killers will need to make note of, and that is angles.
‘Cause it also matters at which angle you fire your projectiles:
- Firing a tank at a crooked angle will do less damage.
- Firing it at a right angle will do more damage.
Still with me? Good! ‘Cause here’s the conclusion:
Here’s the best way to destroy a tank (and kill the hostiles inside), when using SMAWs and RPGs:
- Position your character so you can shoot towards the tank’s backside.
- Line up your character so it’s pointing its weapon straight on the target.
- Fire, and enjoy the mayhem!
Usually, two or three rockets will be enough to kill the iron beast.
Here’s what you’ll need to think about when trying to destroy a tank:
- Never engage a tank full frontal. Its armour is too strong there.
- Try to always maintain cover between your character and the tank.
- Try changing your character’s position between each shot. That’ll make it harder for the tank crew to kill it.
- Choose the Anti-Tank field upgrade. With it, you’ll get more mines and missiles as you go than otherwise.
And in Other News…
Just at the very end, I’ve got a couple of general tips about some measures to take in order to make your life as an Engineer that little bit easier:
A Support is Your Best Friend
Try staying close to your team’s Support players. They’ll keep you fully stocked with missiles and mines at all times.
A Recon is Your Second Best Friend
Encourage the Recon players on your team to use their portable laser designators. These will turn several launchers into fire and forget weapons.
Use Silencers – A Lot
More often than not, you’ll need to sneak behind enemy lines to place mines. And a lot of times you’ll need to tiptoe past hostiles in order to get behind a tank.
Use silencers – on your main and secondary weapons. This will reduce your risk of everyone and their mums seeing you lurking away.
An ordinary Battlefield multiplayer match will change its characteristics often. This means you’ll need to solve a lot of different tasks with a lot of different kinds of tools.
In part of the match, there might be a bigger need for anti-tank measures.
Other parts might require you to shoot down jets and choppers.
Here’s the point I’m trying to make: try understanding what’s going on around your character. Change your loadout when you respawn in order to attend to primary threats going on right then and there.
The better you are at adjusting your playing style and loadout to the ever-changing circumstances of a match, the better the chances of you and your team succeeding.
These were my Engineer tips for now. Got some more? Share ‘em with the rest of us in the comment field below.