Author Topic: Guide to playing (guild) Assassins  (Read 1468 times)


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Guide to playing (guild) Assassins
« on: February 17, 2012, 05:45:39 AM »
A few FAQ's and ideas on how to play a well-fleshed assassin role:

To start of, there are various options to play a killer/murderer type of a role on ArmageddonMud: Rangers, warriors, mages of various types, muls with little skill but that insane rage thing, half-giants with brute strength, can all PK effectively - however, these races/guilds are not assassins in the "pure" meaning of the term. You can play any race/guild combination and RP being an assassin, or, you could play a guild_assassin PC and opt to do other things rather than assassinating. This guide is for players who wish to play a solid guild_assassin PC with an assassin role in mind.

One of the simpler definitions of Assassin : Usually someone for hire, who murders by sudden and/or secret attack.

An assassin is neither a warrior nor a ranger. Many players tend to think that they should play an assassin, just to play something different, and end up wondering why their long-lived assassin still sucks as compared to some other guilds, in combat. An assassin's forte is not one-on-one combat (even though they do get decently good at it at very high levels), but rather, to be the master of delivering deathly strikes, using the elements of stealth, camouflage and surprise.

An assassin should almost always opt to use all the skills at their disposal, to carry out strikes and complete them as soon as possible. Using projectiles is always a safe bet, to keep an assassin's identity secret. The use of poisons cannot be stressed enough! You have the ability to disable the target critically by using poisons - make it a point to find a teacher in-game, and learn about poisons and their cures.

An assassin is a hunter and killer of humanoids primarily, and that too in urban regions. Yes, some may adapt to use their skills in the outdoors, but they will never be as effective as they can be in their own milieu. (Yes, an uber-trained sniper rifle assassin RL CAN go out hunting game in the great outdoors, but he'll never be as good at it as a hunter who has trained and hunted all his life in the outdoors -- try to imagine a huntsman on one hand, and an assassin on the other, trying to hunt a bear or a wild boar in the wilderness, who do you think will be more effective?).

Assassins are able to kill or knock out their targets instantaneously - both are very effective tools, depending on the end-goal. Again, this has to be considered in context with the assassin's training and capabilities. (An experienced assassin RL would be able to take out a human target with ease, but, you would never consider employing an assassin to kill an elephant or knock-out a rhino!).

A lot of players assume that playing an assassin in the shadier parts of Zalanthas is the de-facto choice. This is a misunderstanding. Burglars and Pickpockets possibly have a wider vista of opportunities in urban areas, and are as adept at shady activities. It is common for players to apply for an assassin's role, and never carry out a single assassination during the course of their PC's existence (practising backstab and sap and randomly killing NPCs do not count!).

So, to put it succinctly, plan on playing an assassin if you are interested in carrying out humanoid assassinations primarily - over the long run. You may opt to be a master of disguise and subterfuge, but bear in mind that urban espionage is something other guilds can do more expertly than a hardcore killer.

  • How do I practise backstab/sap with the appropriate RP?
First of all, both these skills are meant to be used to attack real targets, and it is considered to be bad form to practise them with sparring weapons and with sparring partners, even if the partners are willing to let you practise your skills on them. (Its unrealistic to tell someone that you're gonna try and surprise them and shove a sharp object into their back, or, try to crack their skull, even if it's just in a sparring compound or friendly setting -- knowing that the attack is imminent is enough to vitiate the concept of a hidden attack).

As far as RPing these skills is concerned depends entirely on your imagination. Perhaps you're a breed who's hated by all other races, and you're retaliating their unkindness to you. Or perhaps you're a human who hates elves or vice-versa. Perhaps someone tried to trip you while you were sneaking around. Or perhaps someone tried to steal something from you. Whatever the case, RP the interaction between yourself and your target, and then RP how your PC attempts these critical attacks.

Senseless backstab and sap attempts without appropriate RP and reasoning/thinking will brand your assassin as a random killer -- and people are always watching from the shadows -- be prepared to face the consequences if you go this route - which could well result in a similar attack on YOU, without any RP or prior warning.

  • How can I make my assassin good?
There is only one answer to this: Reputation.
Everyone needs to get someone or the other killed, for whatever reasons they might have at some point. But no one would entrust the job on some unknown person with doubtful capabilities, lest their own hand be revealed.
An assassin must play a dual role of guarding his identity, but at the same time having a reputation that will tempt people to hire them. Making your name or alias known in different circles, will ensure a steady flow of enquiries. Carrying them out successfully will ensure riches and reputation. Having friends or front-men who will promote your reputation in different locations is something you as an assassin might wish to consider after reaching a certain level.

  • This could get boring, what do I do in the meantime?
Assassins don't get up every morning, read the news, and go out and assassinate a few people. We're not talking about some terminator machines here! As an assassin, you will have a dual life - one that is your normal life, which might entail the life of a crafter, or that of a mercenary, or that of a House guard or even that of a lazy good-for-nothing loafer; the other side of your life will involve your shady activities - and these might be periodical, depending on your effectiveness, reputation and the general socio-political sentiment of the place you live in. So, a good assassin will always try and be on the move, to keep getting more jobs, and at the same time, not stick around in one place too long, after the completion of prior jobs. Again, this will only help build up the assassin's global repute.

  • Are there any suggestions to fine-tune assassins?
Several. Each player will come up with their own techniques. The main advice I'd offer is for an assassin to scope out his target, the people his target deals with, and the general vicinity of where the target lives and operates, and identify safe hiding places nearby in case a retreat is warranted, or, identify points where the assassin might be able to get his hands on the target easily, with the least chances of detection or arrest. Getting into and out of difficult/locked places gives an assassin a huge edge in covering his tracks or delivering surprise attacks! Effective use of incendiary devices is always something to be considered when it comes to assassinating high-profile targets or when an assassin wishes to remain completely out of the picture. An assassin's ability to scope out other hidden folk is a life saver. Knowing how to effectively shadow a target is the assassin's best weapon.

Assassins - don't think of shadow ninjas or Chuck Norris or The Terminator........think of the sweet, eclectic, mild-mannered old man living next door to you for the last 20 years, who dresses up in a suit and takes off for a few days randomly, and comes back home with a million dollars added to his off-shore bank account!

** Thanks to contributions from: Delirium, Lizzie and Palomar.
« Last Edit: February 17, 2012, 05:47:23 AM by Incognito »
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