Being an archer in Chivalry 2 is one of the most fun classes to use; this guide will help you destroy the enemy team without ever needing to get close if you don’t want to. I will break down the three sub-classes and their available weaponry and how each serves a specific role. Plus, general tips to ensure that you’re maximising your potential. It will also help you to get certain achievements/ trophies such as ‘Playing the wrong game’ and ‘Long range menace’.
Don’t be ashamed to be an archer. The enemy knights, vanguards and footmen may be filled with burning rage as you snipe them from fifty metres away, but that’s all part of the fun. There’s a fun rivalry online, on Reddit, for example, between archers and everyone else, but it’s generally in good taste. Archers serve their purpose and are fairly balanced, but if nothing else, they add to the medieval experience.
Preferred Settings and Options
Before even getting into a match, you can fine-tune your settings to fit your own preferences. First up, you might want to turn off aim assist on ranged weapons if you’re playing with a controller. It can be a bit too powerful and sticks your aim to the enemies quite aggressively. This makes it harder to target specific enemies in a crowd, for example, if you’re trying to take out an enemy archer or to go for a headshot and get past shields. But leave it on if it doesn’t help.
Other settings that should be adjusted are the right stick dead zone, aim response style and sensitivities. This will help your aiming feel more responsive, and you’ll be able to control it better. Experiment with each option as this aspect is subjective but can greatly affect your ability to be accurate. So just be aware that these options exist and take your time to explore them. This is just a guide for being an archer in Chivalry 2; everyone will have their preferred settings.
One last option which should be considered is your gameplay perspective, 1st or 3rd person. This can be changed on the fly with the press of a button so it can be easier to try each one and see which you prefer best. 3rd person gives you a wider field of view (FOV), allowing you to see incoming enemies from your sides and enable you to peek around corners while staying in cover, but 1st can allow for more precise aiming at a distance and is generally more immersive.
Practice Makes Perfect
Now it’s time to get out there and test out the changes you’ve made. Take a few games to go back and forth from the settings until you’re happy with where things are set. This may take a few hours, but over time you should find the sweet spot. You should avoid changing things once you’re happy as you’ll need to get used to it again.
A good way to practice is against bots. You can set up an offline match on any map or mode against a maximum of 32 bots. You can also adjust the score and time limit for the Deathmatch modes. While the bots are pretty dumb and pose very little threat, they can give you the chance to practice in a stress-free environment.
Take the time to learn how the arrows travel and how they drop for each weapon. You can also use this time to find good sightlines and vantage points on the Team Objective maps that allow you to pick off enemies while still having good cover away from potential flanking routes.
Strategies and Tactics
Now let’s get into the nitty-gritty of the moment-to-moment gameplay. Your biggest weakness as an archer is your lack of health. You’ll only have 90, whereas, on the other end of the spectrum, knights will have 175. Therefore you must try to avoid damage at much as you can, especially when having the bow equipped as you cannot block. Try to hang back behind your teammates and fire through the gap and over their heads. Hitting friendlies will happen, but while it doesn’t do as much damage, you should still try to avoid it.
Sometimes it’s best to just fire into the crowd. When aiming, you’re a sitting duck from other archers and from being flanked. Don’t spend ages lining up your shot because you might still miss anyway. It can be best just to fire immediately as enemies will constantly be moving, so there’s little reason to waste time aiming when you could just keep raining down arrows.
While staying back in the safety of your spawn, don’t get tunnel vision. You still must be a valuable member of the team, so keep an eye out for downed teammates crawling towards you so you can revive them. Likewise, try to stay near the other archers on your team in case you go down. Finally, the most important thing is the objective, so don’t stay too far back if the objective is nowhere close – there’s no point killing enemies who aren’t contributing either. Plus, you can directly play the objective if it’s safe to do so.
This leads to making use of your secondary weapon and equipment. All archer sub-classes have access to a small weapon as a backup. Be it a dagger, axe or cudgel. Many attackers will be surprised as they charge a defenceless archer only for them to whip out a knife. These weapons may do little damage but are fast and can make an aggressive enemy back off until reinforcements arrive. There’s no reason to be a ranged-only class. If you’re good at blocking, countering and dodging, you can slice up your enemies up close and personal, even as an archer. You could even pick up dropped weapons or environmental objects to use as well.
Each class has a third option in the form of an item. This includes a spike trap, pavise shield and a bear trap. Don’t forget to use these to block paths and protect yourself or the objectives. Each sub-class also has a special ability as well which is earned through specific actions. It can be easy to get lost in the fighting and forget about these, but they can add a lot to your gameplay.
The final part of this Chivalry 2 archer guide will contain some tips and tricks for the sub-classes. All three have 90 health, 100 speed and 50 stamina.
Described as a “classic scout, great for peppering enemies from long range with a high volume of shots”. This class has “variable draw strength”, which means that you can pull the arrow back all the way for a full-damage shot or just tap the fire button to immediately shoot a weaker shot. This weaker shot is very effective, though, still doing more than 50% of the full damage shot. This is useful for close-range shots to soften enemies up before pulling out your secondary.
This class’s ability is the fire brazier. After getting enough headshots, you can place this down. When standing behind it, the arrow loaded on your bow will ignite and thus, your shot will now do more damage by burning the enemies you hit over time. You also have the focus ability to zoom in like it’s a shooter.
The crossbowman is an “anti-armour sniper that can plant a mobile shield as cover”. The crossbow does a lot more damage than the longbow but is more cumbersome to use and takes a long time to reload after every shot. It also does more damage to knights and footmen. Your secondary is useful for this class as it can be easy to get caught off guard while reloading. Beware of hostile archers as you must stand still to reload; this is why the deployable shield is useful if there’s no other cover around.
The crossbow class can place a banner down after landing headshots. The banner will heal all allies over time. This kind of goes against the role of this class because if you’re sniping, you’re probably not going to be near teammates. So the best way to use it is to run to your team’s frontline, plant the banner and run back a little to safety if you want to snipe. Lastly, the crossbowman had the same focus ability as the longbowman.
The final sub-class to unlock is described as a “hybrid melee/ ranged fighter that throws weapons and places traps”. The javelins and axes are good for both throwing and melee. However, they do a lot more damage when thrown, but of course, you run the risk of missing and you only have a limited supply. Despite being capable of melee fighting, you still have the same health and stamina as the other archers, so don’t go in swinging like a vanguard.
To refill your ammo, your ability is a quiver that fully restocks your supplies; this is again earned by getting headshots. It allows you to be a bit more carefree with your javelins; you can throw all five and simply restock wherever you are. The speed of these projectiles is slower than the arrows of the longbow and crossbow but does more damage. Despite being unlocked last, this sub-class is the weakest, in my opinion, as it doesn’t do ranged attacks as well as the other two archers and isn’t as good for melee and the other classes.
(Videos by: spragels)