DUST 514 is bracing itself for an influx of new players today as the MMO FPS receives its official launch.
To help ease you into the world of New Eden gently and give you a boost, PSU has put together a short beginner’s guide and a few tips that should help you out.
Get to know the NeoCom
Aside from your team-mates, the NeoCom is your biggest friend in DUST 514. The menu system boasts many options and it’s a place where you’ll spend a lot of time searching for the best weapons and equipment, spending your ISK and SP and honing your skills ready for the battle. ISK is the money you receive for completing war contracts in DUST 514. SP are the skill points that you acquire during battle for killing enemies, healing team-mates and completing objectives.
There are text-based tutorials for each section and you should read them thoroughly. And then read them again. Go through each section on the NeoCom and familiarise yourself with all of the options. If you get to know and understand the weapons, dropsuits and vehicle and the differences between them early on, it will save you a lot of ISK and SP in the long run.
Check out the Marketplace
Head for the Marketplace and check out the Militia Gear. The marketplace is full of great gear but it will be while before you’ll have the cash and skills to get the best stuff. Militia Gear is standard issue gear that requires no skills to wear and is cheap to buy. Use Militia Gear from the outset to experiment with dropsuits, equipment, vehicles and weapons to get a feel for what type of role you might like to play long-term on the battlefield.
Check out some of the deals on offer for Mercenary Packs which give you in-game currency and items to help you on your way. Yeah, DUST is totally free to play, but we can’t resist buying the Active Boosters which are relatively cheap to buy at 7000 AUR (Approx £3). Equip these boosters and every time you earn SP you’ll get a bonus. In short, you’ll be able to get your hands on the good stuff more quickly.
Take your time skilling up
The progression system in DUST is very deep and it has a great degree of flexibility. You can mould your character to suit your play-style. Whether it be a logistics mercenary who runs around the battlefield healing team-mates, repairing vehicles and throwing down Nanohives (ammo drops) or a cool-headed sniper who strives for perfection with one-kill headshots, there’s something here for everyone.
That’s why it’s important not to rush into any decisions until you’ve tried out lots of basic equipment and weapons. Skilling up costs SP and once you’ve spent it on a skill there’s no going back. Play the game, test out as many variations as possible with Militia Gear and then think about the role you wish to play. Use your SP to level up in those areas. Perhaps you’re a master with the assault rifle, for example, so would benefit from buying more ammo capacity for your bullets or access to high level assault rifles.
In the early days, we think it's wise to hoard ISK and SP until a time when you’re ready to decide on your specialisation. Until then, the Militia Gear is good enough.
Be prepared for battle
We found that the default sensitivity of the X and Y axis which controls your aiming reticule was a little too slow. You can adjust this setting from the NeoCom and you may find that by making aiming move a little quicker you’ll be able to react more sharply to enemies around you.
There are two bars that you can see on the HUD which represent your shield and your health. If your shield is depleted then find cover until it recharges. Keep an eye on your health bar and get ready to run to cover if you know you’re going down. If you’re near a group of allies, they’ll often be one or plays a Logistics role and is equipped with a repair tool which will heal your mercenary. Use cover wisely and always back off and find cover or allies if you’re out-numbered or health is very low.
Always have one eye on the map. Enemy soldiers appear in red! When you're on your own and the map is swarming with red dots, you might want to move.
Gain War Points and SP by hacking objects. You can hack objects more quickly with multiple players hacking. Hacking Null Cannon’s in Skirmish mode, for example, yields as many Skill points as it does to kill a player. You can also hack turrets, enemy vehicles, supply depots and spawn points.
Shield and health status can be seen on the bottom left-hand corner
Move from A to B quickly with a free vehicle. Most things cost ISK in DUST but the basic Light Assault Vehicle (LAV) is free and can be summoned by dropship by pressing right on the d-pad. It’s a nifty little vehicle and will get you across the map quickly. If there are any enemies on the road, mow them down! Don't get too cocky though, an anti-vehicle weapon will take these out with one shot.
Tactically swap loadouts. Create some loadouts that offer different skills. When you die you can spec into any of these loadouts. You might have started with a sub-machine, for example, and ran into the heat of the battle before discovering an area ideal for sniping that overlooks where the enemy is converging. React to the ever-changing battlefield and experiment until you find your ideal role. You can also change your loadout at Supply Points.
Learn the maps. If you’re going to be spending a lot of time in DUST it will pay to know the maps inside out. One of our favourite locations is the tabletop (high area) in the middle of some of the maps. From here you have a view over a large part of the map and a vantage point over your enemy. Remember to bring long range weapons!
Don’t be disheartened! You will die a lot in DUST and it may be tempting to play it for half-an-hour and quit when you first join. Don’t. DUST 514 is the most in-depth, rewarding shooter we have ever played. Join a Corp, go into the DUST communities for advice and speak with people in Chat. There’s a constant learning process in DUST and as soon as things click you’ll never turn back.
For more tips and advice, or to join a friendly DUST 514 Corporation, check out our DUST 514 sub-forum.