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Imperial Agent - Guides, useful threads and links

STAR WARS: The Old Republic > English > Classes
Imperial Agent - Guides, useful threads and links

Obsivus's Avatar


Obsivus
12.19.2011 , 01:09 PM | #1
Greetings Agents!


So, I realized that our Imperial Agent board is a bit messy with lots of threads with questions so I feel we all need some more organization to move around it. This thread will show guides and gather all useful links and threads.

If you find useful threads, links and informations not listed here and if you find incorrect information please PM me and I'll add it to the list or edit/remove incorrect information.

This thread will constantly be updated with new information, useful threads and links.



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Beginner's Guide
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Imperial Agent: A Newbie's Guide by David Douville
How To PVP Guide Part 1 Targeting & Hotkeys
Imperial Agent Compendiums
Imperial Agent's Companion list & gifts
Advice For New IA Snipers by Aeon
Basic introduction and leveling guide for Imperial Agent Operative ]
lvl 50 Operative - FAQ Thread by jbrdude
Operative Healing Guide by Krain
Operative Leveling Guide by Sang
Energy & Operative DPS
The Sniper's handbook
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Blogs
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Snipers Of the Old Republic - Resources and commentary for IA Snipers

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Tools
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Imperial Skill Tree Calculator & SWTOR Database

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Community Threads & links
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Daniteh Live stream PVP/PVE
Sniper Picture thread
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Sniper & Operative guide


1. Introduction
2. Important Information(Cover & Energy)
3. Primary Stats
4. Companion List
5. Operative Basics
6. Sniper Basics
7. Sniper PVP/PVE Builds Updated: 4 new Engineering Builds & 4 New Marksmanship builds added (2011-12-23)
8. Sniper DPS Rotations
9. Operative PVP/PVE Builds
Updated: 6 new builds added(2011-12-21)
10. Operative DPS/Heal Rotations Updated: Healing rotation added (2011-12-21)
11. Keybinding NEW added (2011-12-21)



1. Introduction

The Agent is a primarily ranged class focused around using blasters, explosives, and dirty tricks to take down enemies. From levels 1 to 10, you'll find yourself with a variety of neat ways to dispatch your enemies. Early abilities include blaster rifle shots, hand grenades, flashbangs, and the class's define feature, cover.

The cover mechanic in SWTOR is simple but effective. Pressing the F key or the middle mouse button will cause your character to take cover. If there's nothing around behind which you can actually take cover, your character will simply drop to one knee and improvise. This is important because there are some abilities that can only be used while you're in cover (such as the extremely powerful Snipe and Explosive Probe abilities), and staying in cover also gives you a defense bonus against ranged attackers.

At level 10, you get to choose your advanced class. The choices for the Imperial Agent are Operative and Sniper. The Sniper does what it says on the tin: It uses a sniper rifle to shoot from long distances, often with devastating effect. The Operative is an entirely different beast. Stealth is his middle name, and many attacks revolve around dirty tricks like backstabs and cheap shots. But the real treat that the Operative brings to the table is the ability to heal. Operatives can use Kolto Infusion to bring teammates back to health or remove poisons and other toxins from them to ensure they're in top fighting condition.

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2. Important Information(Cover & Energy)

The Imperial Agent, as well as their counter class the Republic Smuggler, have several class distinct abiilities. The most prominent of these is the cover mechanic, the ability to roll/crouch in cover and gain a moderate amount of defense and extra abilities, while sacrificing mobility. When and where to enter cover will be a very large part of the learning curve for IA’s at each encounter in the game.
This system works according to your current hostile target. Should you have no target selected you will use portable cover instead. Note that you cannot roll into cover when you have a friendly target. When you have a hostile target, green silhouettes will appear that show you the positions you are able to roll into relative to your targets position.

The IA also has portable cover, though only the Sniper AC receives the funky looking portable laser screen. Operatives instead just crouch in place, the same as during levels 1-10.

The second major part of playing the IA is resource management, namely energy starvation and regeneration. This resource depletes as abilities are used, but regenerates at different rates according to how much energy you currently have.

Energy Regeneration works at a variable rate dependant on your current total energy.

Current Energy = 80 – 100 = 5 RPS
Current Energy = 60-80 = 4 RPS
Current Energy = 40 – 60 = 3 RPS
Current Energy = 20-40 = 2.5 RPS
Current Energy = 0 – 20 = 2 RPS

To play at the maximum potential throughput of the class, you need to try and keep above 60 energy when you can, using both Stim Boost and Adrenaline Probe to keep your energy up.

Adrenaline Probe is a cooldown ability that returns 50 energy over 3 seconds. It is a clutch ability that should ideally be saved for when you have to use excessive energy during either a burn phase (dps) or when you need to put out an extreme amount of healing throughput. It has a 120 second cooldown, allowing it to be used multiple times in longer fights.

Stim Boost consumes a Tactical Advantage proc to return 3 energy every 3 seconds for 45 seconds, this buff should be kept up in any fight lasting 45 seconds or longer. In small trash pack pulls, this buff can be safely left off, unless you do not need to use TA to heal. If you’re not needing to heal, use your TA to keep this buff up between trash packs. While SB is active, your energy regen becomes;

Current Energy = 80 – 100 = 6 RPS
Current Energy = 60-80 = 5 RPS
Current Energy = 40 – 60 = 4 RPS
Current Energy = 20-40 = 3.5 RPS
Current Energy = 0 – 20 = 3 RPS

The differences between keeping your energy at a good RPS level and keeping it the lowest RPS level are massive. Let’s have a quick look at the math behind this.

Agent A keeps his energy above 60 for the entire duration of a ten minute fight, while maintaining SB. This gives him the following;

Current Energy = > 60 = 5RPS
5RPS x 600 seconds = 3000 energy to spend on costed abilities.
Agent B likes to do as much as possible when fighting, he spams his abilities to try and burst as much as possible. He keeps his energy below 20 for the entire duration of a ten minute fight and doesn’t keep on top of his SB buff. This gives him the following;

Current Energy = < 20 = 2RPS 2RPS x 600 seconds = 1200 energy to spend on damage abilities In real terms, Agent A has 2.5 times more energy to spend than Agent B. Resource managment will be an incredibly important part of playing an IA, easily differentiating the really good IA players from the average.

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3. Primary Stats

There are five primary/basic character attributes in SWTOR: Endurance, Aim, Cunning, Strength and Willpower. Endurance gives you 10 HP per single point, and the other four stats increase your class’ base damage and critical chance:

All primary stats give 1% crit for every 140 (at level 50)
Aim gives 0.2 ranged damage
Strength gives 0.2 melee damage
Cunning gives 0.2 tech damage
Will power gives 0.2 force damage

Your primary stat will always give either [Ranged + Tech] or [Melee + Force], so a Trooper will get a tech bonus from Cunning, and a Smuggler will get a ranged damage bonus from Aim in addition to the bonuses they already get from their primary stat. This causes Smugglers to do more damage with Weapon attacks, and Troopers will do more damage with Tech attacks (see: explosives) assuming both had the same base value and scaling. Strength and Willpower give both of them nothing but crit.

Imperial Agent stats:

Primary: Cunning
Secondary: Endurance

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4. Companion list

Kaliyo D'jannis

Planet: Hutta
Companion type: Ranged DPS
Armor: Heavy Armor
Gender: Female
Species: Rattataki
Age: 29 (unconfirmed)
Likes: disrespecting authority, casual violence, anarchy for the fun of it.
Dislikes: self-sacrifice for the greater good, sincerity, obedience, patriotic spirit and being taken advantage of.
Primary Stat: Aim
Secondary Stat: Endurance
Primary Weapon: Blaster Rifle or Blaster Pistol
Secondary Weapon: Shield Generator

Kaliyo Companion Gifts:
  • Weapon: love
  • Military Gear: like
  • Courting: indifferent
  • Luxury: favorite, love
  • Technology: like
  • Republic Memorabilia: indifferent
  • Imperial Memorabilia: indifferent
  • Cultural Artifact: indifferent
  • Trophy: indifferent
  • Underworld Good: favorite


Vector Hyllis

Planet: Alderaan
Companion type: Melee DPS
Armor: Light armor
Gender: male
Species: Human (enhanced)
Age: 26
Likes: Diplomacy, helping people, exploring alien cultures
Dislikes: Greed, cruelty, prejudice, anti-alien sentiment
Primary Stat: Willpower
Secondary Stat: Endurance
Primary Weapon: Electrostaff
Secondary Weapon: Generator (non-shield)

Vector Companion Gifts:
  • Weapon: like
  • Military Gear: indifferent
  • Courting: indifferent, favorite
  • Luxury: like
  • Technology: indifferent
  • Republic Memorabilia: indifferent
  • Imperial Memorabilia: favorite
  • Cultural Artifact: love
  • Trophy: like
  • Underworld Good: indifferent

Doctor Lokin

Planet: Taris
Companion type: Heals/DPS
Armor: Medium Armor
Gender: Male
Species: Human
Age: 65 (estimate)
Likes: Clever solutions, long-term thinking, technology, pragmatism
Dislikes: Ideaology, honesty, selfish actions without clear long-term gain.
Primary Stat: Cunning
Secondary Stat: Endurance
Primary Weapon: Blaster Pistol
Secondary Weapon: VIbroknife

Doctor Lokin Companion Gifts:
  • Weapon: indifferent
  • Military Gear: favorite
  • Courting: indifferent
  • Luxury: favorite
  • Technology: love
  • Republic Memorabilia: like
  • Imperial Memorabilia: like
  • Cultural Artifact: indifferent
  • Trophy: indifferent
  • Underworld Good: like

Ensign Raina Temple

Planet: Hoth
Companion type: Ranged DPS
Armor: Medium
Gender: Female
Species: Human
Age: 24
Likes: The Empire, the Sith, duty, honor
Dislikes: Cruelty, casual violence, selfishness
Primary Stat: Cunning
Secondary Stat: Endurance
Primary Weapon: Blaster Pistol
Secondary Weapon: Blaster Pistol

Ensigna Raina Companion Gifts:
  • Weapon: like
  • Military Gear: favorite
  • Courting: like, love
  • Luxury: like
  • Technology: indifferent
  • Republic Memorabilia: like
  • Imperial Memorabilia: love
  • Cultural Artifact: indifferent
  • Trophy: indifferent
  • Underworld Good: indifferent

Scorpio

Planet: Belsavis
Companion type: Melee Tank
Armor: Heavy
Gender: None (identifies as female)
Species: Droid
Age: Unknown
Likes: learning and gaining new tech, selfishness, killing threats.
Dislikes: Self-sacrifice, duty, wastefulness
Primary Stat: Aim
Secondary Stat: Endurance
Primary Weapon: Electrostaff
Secondary Weapon: Shield Generator

Scorpio Companion Gifts:
  • Weapon: favorite
  • Military Gear: like
  • Courting: indifferent
  • Luxury: indifferent
  • Technology: love
  • Republic Memorabilia: indifferent
  • Imperial Memorabilia: indifferent
  • Cultural Artifact: like
  • Trophy: like
  • Underworld Good: indifferent

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5. Operative Basics

Coming soon, hardcore leveling atm

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6. Sniper Basics

Coming soon, hardcore leveling atm


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7. Sniper PVP/PVE Builds


Direct link to the builds.

Engineering Leveling Build (0/26/0)
Karaokelove prefer talents that improve "primary" Engineering abilities and increase energy efficiency. Taking Energy Tanks first makes a big difference at lower levels when you may want to use Overload Shot (energy intensive) to pad your damage out of cover. Gearhead is a talent that gets better and better as you level. Karaokelove skip Engineer's Tool Belt because he don't like to lean on the inefficient and relatively light-hitting Fragmentation Grenade for his damage. He find the value in this talent comes largely from the reduced CD on Flash Bang. Explosive Engineering is a necessary talent to improve Explosive Probe, another of the spec's key abilities.

He avoid Vital Regulators and Calculated Pursuit. Although the regulators make a good talent, he don't find the health regeneration predictable enough not to bring medpacks with him. He also tend to play Engineering with a Marksmanship slant toward using cover, so it's hard for him to justify taking any talent that would allow him to use Snipe out of cover (unlikely, given his preferred playstyle).

he also choose to split acquiring Energy Overrides because, although it is an important talent, Augmented Shields has excellent talent synergy with EMP Discharge. The more often you take advantage of the pair, the better.

This build should allow you to perform well in both PvE and PvP while you level. For example, he have found the unique slow from the Inventive Interrogation Techniques talent to be a more valuable addition to the build than the other available options at that level.

Suggested Build Order:
Energy Tanks (2), Gearhead (3)
Explosive Engineering (3), Vitality Serum (2)
Cluster Bombs (2), Interrogation Probe (1), Efficient Engineering (2)
Imperial Methodology (1), Experimental Explosives (2), Inventive Interrogation Techniques (2)
EMP Discharge (1), Energy Overrides (1), Augmented Shields (2), Energy Overrides (1)
Deployed Shields (1)

Engineering Leveling Build to 50 (7/31/3)
This build moves in a logical progression from the 1-35 Leveling Spec. The only point of diversion is whether or not you decide to put two points into Cover Screen and one into Marksmanship or commit all three points of that remaining tier to Marksmanship. Although Cover Screen can be useful, he get more consistent results from Ballistic Dampers and tend to find the increased accuracy from Marksmanship a bit more valuable.

NB: Suitable for both PvE and PvP. This is a flexible "base" build that can be altered to fit a variety of playstyles at 50.

Suggested Build Order:
Deployed Shields (2), Electrified Railgun (3)
Plasma Probe (1)
Marksmanship Tree: Steady Shots (2), Marksmanship (3) (NB: Two points in Cover Screen is a viable alternative, with one point in Marksmanship)
Marksmanship Tree: Ballistic Dampers (2)
Lethality Tree: Lethality (3)

Aggressive Engineering PvE Raid Build (7/31/3)
This build focuses on PvE raid damage without sacrificing too much of Engineering's native utility.

Pros: Drops the talented slow on Inventive Interrogation Techniques for the passive healing on Vital Regulators. Ambush gains 20% armorpen from Precision Ambush.
Cons: Passes up on key PvP talents and some survivability from Ballistic Dampers in exchange for increased damage and a passive heal.

Alternative Engineering PvP Mobility Build (3/31/7)
This build takes Engineer's Tool Belt and Flash Powder as a complementary talent duo, then adds Slip Away for the reduced CD on Debilitate and a little extra utility. I most often don't use Vital Regulators in my builds because I prefer the Augmented Shields talent. Both Augmented Shields and Vital Regulators enjoy synergy with EMP Discharge, so which to use (or both, sacrificing some other points in say, Marksmanship accuracy or Steady Shots damage) is a matter of personal preference.

Pros: More mobile, additional accuracy debuff when Flash Bang wears off.
Cons: Trades some defensive and offensive talents for the mobility. You could put the extra point I have in Marksmanship into Vital Regulators if you wanted.

This is just one example of a way to configure a viable Engineering PvP build. Many Sniper talents have two or more "complements" in their respective trees. There are also some lower-tier talents that provide good dovetailed benefits.

Marksmanship Leveling Build to 50 (31/7/3)
This build has a mixture of offensive and defensive talents acquired as you level. It follows the build order above and then continues in a fairly logical fashion as you approach 50.

Suggested Build Order
Imperial Assassin (5)
Rapid Fire (1)
Engineering Tree: Gearhead (3), Energy Tanks (2)
Lethality Tree: Lethality (3)
Engineering Tree: Vitality Serum (2)

Basic Marksmanship PVP/PVE build (31/7/3)
He take two points out of Cover Screen and put them into damage/offense talents, instead. This build is the baseline for most others. You always want the extra Cunning (Gearhead) in Engineering. The extra crit from Lethality in the Lethality tree is up to you, but he like to get that in pretty much every build he run.

Variations on other control and defensive abilities in the Marksmanship tree will be up to you, but at least 31 points total in Marksmanship are necessary. You can trade the points in Cover Screen and put them into Imperial Demarcation for the reduced Leg Shot CD, etc. You can also choose not to go for Heavy Shot (though I prefer it for PvP) and pick up something like Sector Ranger or part of the Pillbox Sniper talent. A pure PvE build based on this one might drop Heavy Shot and put a point into Cover Screen or Vital Regulators, instead.

Eventually it gets to be a matter of playstyle preference. He tend to prefer consistent alacrity procs because Marksmanship does not have the ability to reset Adrenaline Probe the way that the Engineering tree can (using EMP Discharge).

Pros: Higher and more consistent damage, interrupt potential from Heavy Shot (mostly a PvP talent, though it has solo PvE applications), overall good damage and extra health/energy from the Engineering tree
Cons: Squishy, with longer CD on Entrench and few escape options

Marksmanship PvE Build (33/5/3)
This spec assumes you have decent gear and can hedge not having the extra HP from the Engineering tree in favor of getting Pillbox Sniper and Sector Ranger. These talents complement each other well and can be useful in a group PvE setting when you need to be interrupted less (i.e. use Entrench a lot) and use Orbital Strike more as well. Because Orbital Strike can be set and then “forgotten,” you can set it up (huzzah, lower cast time from Sector Ranger!) and then move to another cover point to reset your cover buffs. Predictable procs give you the opportunity to get into cover and apply your damage, then move and reset if necessary.

Pros: More frequent Orbital Strike and Entrench, excels at sustained and predictable damage in a PvE setting
Cons: Sacrifices the higher health pool from Engineering and does not take Heavy Shot (one point in Cover Screen gives it slightly more survivability, but the point of the build is to make every “proc” talent predictable in both “Sustained” and “Burst” situations; a PvP build based on this spec will take Heavy Shot and ditch Cover Screen).

Marksmanship “Slip Away” Mobility PVP build (31/3/7)
An example of an alternative spec that prioritizes the Slip Away Talent in Lethality to give Marksmanship a movement/escape buff that they otherwise wouldn’t be able to access. This sacrifices the extra energy and endurance in the Engineering tree in order to get the extra mobility from the Lethality tree. I tend to take the same 31 points in Marksmanship because he like being able to count on the instant snipe from Snap Shot when rolling into cover, consistent stacks of Sniper Volley, and consistent access to Sniper Volley via Reactive Shot. Some people don’t mind if the “speed” talents don’t activate all the time.

Imperial Demarcation and Pillbox Sniper are both highly useful talents in their own right. The only thing he don’t take as often in PvP is the Cover Screen defensive talent. Once you get to a high enough level, you can elect to be a little more squishy in favor of doing more damage or increasing your control potential. Again, he tend to prioritize the talents higher in the Marksmanship tree when electing which to take overall (so, for Marksmanship, Sector Ranger and Pillbox Sniper over Imperial Demarcation). The talents that are lower in the Marksmanship tree tend to mesh better with other primary specs (i.e. Engineering and Lethality).

Pros: Higher mobility and escape potential.
Cons: Misses out on a larger health pool and energy pool. If you go for Imperial Demarcation and Cover Screen in Marksmanship rather than consistent alacrity procs from Reactive Shot and Sniper Volley, you’ll have more control that complements the Slip Away talent in Lethality but potentially sacrifice Marksmanship’s characteristic and consistent damage. This may be worthwhile if you’re planning to be solo in PvP and/or you don’t have a dependable healer. Preferences vary according to playstyle.

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8. Sniper DMG Rotation

The Imperial Agent is very situational which makes a set skill rotation difficult to recommend.

I would say a priority like this.

Takedown > Ambush > Followthrough > Series of Shots > Explosive Probe > Snipe > Shiv

I didn't add Rifle Shot beacuse thats what you use in regular basis whenever its possible so you don't drain your energy too much.

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9. Operative PVP/PVE Builds

Without any points in the medic tree, you will have access to three heals. These heals each have a cast or channel-time, greatly limiting your ability to heal in all but the most basic situations. You can get by leveling and running quests with your companion without any points in the medic tree, but you’ll need to invest in the tree for group content or PvP.

11-Point Medic Builds
You gain your first instant-cast heal (Kolto Probe) with the 11th point in the medic tree. It is possible to invest in medic just up to Kolto Probe, and then go 30-deep in one of the damage trees, but you will be lacking an instant heal (KP is instant cast, but is also a HoT). The result of a healing build with 11 points invested in medic is a damage-oriented build, with some healing capability. A build such as this could be useful as PvE dps with some off-healing or adequate self-healing, and will also be useful in many PvP situations. Examples of such a build include:

PVP & DPS leveling build (31/5/5)
From what I've seen if it's essentially the best damage-focused build out there for the operative. Obviously it won't be viable as a endgame healing spec, but Operatives can still effectively heal in groups/flashpoints without really investing too heavily in the medic tree (which is still pretty godawful).

Heavy Concealment PvP Build (11/23/7)
This PvP build offers heavy burst damage, an emphasis on stealth and lots of single-target CC. You have some basic heals and Kolto Probe, with an emphasis on healing yourself more than providing heals to others. I avoided talents that buff Corrosive Dart, as you would want to avoid placing DoTs on your target that could break CC. You could shuffle around the points in the 2nd-tier of the Medic tree – I opted for the energy boosting talent Endorphin Rush over the increased healing of Medical Consult. I also chose Razor Edge over Deadly Directive, but you could swap those points depending on play style.

Heavy Lethality Support Build (11/3/27)
Similar to above, but with a heavy investment in the Lethality tree. This build focuses on AoE damage, along with buffs to your DoTs and could be used for off-healing/damage dealing in PvE or PvP. I’ve selected every talent that buffs Corrosive Dart, with the thinking that you will keep that up on as many enemies as possible. Lethal Purpose delivers some nice energy gains, and Lethal Dose buffs your Kolto Probe, as well as your DoTs. I don’t expect this to be a popular build, but it does offer a unique set of tools that some may wish to explore.

22-25 Point Medic Builds
At 21 points in the medic tree, you gain your only instant heal (Surgical Probe). This ability provides a very powerful heal with no energy cost and no CD. Surgical Probe does consume Tactical Advantage, but the Surgical Precision talent regrants TA when Surgical Probe is used on targets below 30% health. Many PvP builds will utilize between 22 and 25 points in the medic tree, as will some PvE builds that aschew the AoE heal available with the 31st point. Examples of builds with 22-25 points in the medic tree include:

PvP Medic Build (25/9/7)
Operatives that are focusing in PvP healing will select something along the lines of this build. This includes all of the important talents in the Medic tree, other than Recuperative Nanotech. While an AoE heal would suit this play style fine, its not worth the extra 6-points to get, as the 6-th tier talents are mediocre. Med Shield only buffs your self-heals, and only while you have Shield Probe active, and Accomplished Doctor does not buff your two main heals (Kolto Probe and Surgical Probe). This build picks up some key survivability and CC talents in the bottom tiers of Concealment and Lethality. You could shift the two points from Medical Therapy to max out Scouting and take Revitalizers, buffing your own survivability over the strengthening your heals. You could also move the point(s) in Scouting to Inclement Conditioning, if the effects of endurance are greater than the defense buff and you don’t care about the increased stealth detection.

PvE Healing Build with Energy Regeneration Focus (24/0/17)
This build eschews the AoE heal of Recuperative Nanotech for added energy regen. The two talents that buff Diagnostic Scan are selected, providing a decent filler heal with bonus energy regen. I have dropped the Tox Screen, but some boss fights may require the mental debuff removal. There are lots of iffy Lethality tree talents taken, but it allows you to go deep enough to take both Combat Stims and Lethal Purpose. The build also offers some buffs to Corrosive Dart, for some added damage dealing when your energy is at a decent level.

31-Point Medic Builds
The final heal available to an operative is gained at 31 points (Recuperative Nano Tech). This heal is an instant cast, AoE HoT, with a 12-second cooldown. The AoE heal will be useful in any PvE battle with group damage, but can be skipped for PvP. Not that an AoE heal wouldn’t be welcome in a PvP build, but you will sacrifice many useful survival and cc abilities in the other two trees to get to 31 points. Some PvE builds will skip the AoE heal also, as the two talents available in the 6th-tier of the medic tree are mediocre. An example of a 31-point Medic build:

PvE Max Healing Build (31/3/7)
This build invests in the Medic tree fully to gain Recuperative Nanotech. Like the 24/0/17 build, the two talents that buff Diagnostic Scan are selected, providing a decent filler heal with bonus energy regeneration. Deadly Directive and Lethality are standard here, with the other 5 points outside of the Medic tree to be used as you see fit. I selected Survival Training for the small healing buff, and Slip Away for the occasions you grab agro.

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10. Operative DMG/Heal Rotation


Healing & Priority

Your first priority is to generate a couple stacks of Tactical Advantage. I suggest stacking two Kolto Probe, and then cast Stim Boost for the energy regen buff. Maintaning Stim Boost should be a priority; don’t be afraid to use Kolto Injection if TA is not proccing quick enough from Kolto Probe, or if you have not selected the Medical Engineering talent. Your second priority is to keep 1-2 stacks of Kolto Probe on your target. Focus on maintaining energy near 80 during normal, non-burst healing situations. In PvE, use Diagnostic Scan as a filler heal and to regen energy. In PvP, use Toxin Scan for debuffing. If you have the Tox Screen talent, Toxin Scan will provide a small heal as well, which is useful considering the skill consumes no energy and has no cooldown.

If your target is taking heavy damage, use Tactical Advantage to cast Surgical Probe. If you do not have Surgical Probe, use Kolto Infusion, but do not expect to keep your target up for long in a burst situation. Once your energy drops near 40%, use Adrenaline Probe and either keep plugging away to outlast the burst, or go back to your normal routine if the danger has passed. Remember, if you invested in the Surgical Precision talent, you can spam Surgical Probe when your target’s health drops below 30%.

If you need to heal more than one target, try to keep one stack of Kolto Probe on each healing target and selectively use Surgical Probe and Kolto Injection when one of your targets is under pressure. Attempting to heal 2 or more targets in a heavy-damage situation will not last long, unfortunately. Recuperative Nanotech, the 31-point AoE healing talent in the Medic tree, is useful when you need to heal several targets, but the 12-second cooldown will make it difficult to sustain your targets for long.

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11. Keybinding

Before I start, This information is tailored for Imperial Agent, I found this from another website and it was made for World of Warcraft players first before I changed it

The eternal struggle between clickers and the rest (pressers? pushers?). Many articles were published about keybinding, some good some bad, but most of them agree on one thing: binding your keys is the way to excel at this game.

There are a few things I’d like to point out:
  1. clickers will always tell you excuses why clicking is “OK”
  2. pressers will never tell you clicking is “OK” (it’s like buying a TV without a remote controller)
  3. binding your keys is not essential for PvE (but it will help you react faster in tight situations)
  4. never backpedal or you will face eternal damnation
  5. keyboard turning is bad (in 99.99% of cases you should use your mouse to turn, otherwise you’ll end up in a comic)
  6. it does not matter how fat your fingers are (I’m not trying to be funny, a friend of mine uses that excuse all the time; bind half of your keyboard to one spell if you must, but at least try it)

Three principles of successful keybinding:
  1. Start slowly: you don’t have to bind every single one of your abilities at once. It’s a learning process and will take some time to get used to (very little though). Start with binding a couple of abilities you use the most, and slowly move on to other commonly used spells as soon as you get the hang of it.
  2. Speed: you should never bind abilities to keys which will take longer to press than click. Don’t use Ctrl+Alt+7 or something like that because it’s pointless and impossible to press with one hand.
  3. Efficiency: bind abilities which you use most. If you’re just starting out, do not bind abilities like Corrosive Dart which that aren’t too crucial. If you’re a raiding, bind Snipe, if you’re a PvP bind Legshot and Distraction(Interrupt ability). You get the point. When you get used to it - even if it takes a week - start with other abilities you commonly use.

What keys should you use?

Keyboard with keybind tags(picture)
This image should give you some idea how to bind your keys (based on my setup more or less).
  1. W, S, A, D - standard keys for moving. Although some people use E-S-D-F, you don’t need to go down that road (although it is better in most cases, since you have more available keys to bind)
  2. Green keys - the most accessible keys and most easy to start with.
  3. Orange keys - less accessible but still close enough, I use out of combat abilities here!

How I bind

First of all, We have many abilities, we have a few in PvP.
As you can probably see on the image, 1-6 are binded, as well as “Ctrl+1-6″. I almost never use “Shift+7″ or binds like that.

1 - Rifle Shot
2 - Snipe
3 - Explosive Probe
4 - Ambush
5 - Laze Target
6 - Adrenaline Probe
-------------------------------
CTRL+1 - Overload Shot
CTRL+2 - Fragmentation Grenade
CTRL+3 - Leg Shot
CTRL+4 - Evasion
-------------------------------
Q - Debilitate
E - Shiv
R - Distraction
T - Flash Bang
X - Cover Pulse
G - Takedown
C - Entrench
-------------------------------
F1 - Speeder mount
F2 - Shadowbox
F3 - Sprint
F4 - Stims
F5 - Coordination


Thats about it! 1-6 are the primary attack abilities and combat buffs I use most of the time, then I have CTR+1-4 with secondary attack abilities that I use depending on the situation.
After that we have the ultra fast finger keybinds so its easy to time it and thats Q,E,R,T and etc.. Last set of keybinds are F1-F4 and those are out of combat abilities.

Remember, Keybinding allows you to react a lot faster than if you where to click, and it also allow your mouse to be more ''free'' to do other things then click spells. In many cases keybinding in PvP is a must.
Imperial Agent - Guides, useful threads and links
Agent Obsivus - Bloodworthy - Guild Status: Searching Hardcore top PVP guild
Peek-a-boo, I see you. You can't see me, but I see you and my spotter can too. I pull the trigger, the beam flies. Jedi watch as one of their own dies

Technohic's Avatar


Technohic
12.19.2011 , 01:21 PM | #2
Thanks for this. I am going to favorite it to read through until it gets stickied.

appleartem's Avatar


appleartem
12.20.2011 , 08:52 AM | #3
Good work! Take my respect for you!
And maybe add some information about gifts for companions?

Kaliyo Companion Gifts:
  • Weapon: love
  • Military Gear: like
  • Courting: indifferent
  • Luxury: favorite, love
  • Technology: like
  • Republic Memorabilia: indifferent
  • Imperial Memorabilia: indifferent
  • Cultural Artifact: indifferent
  • Trophy: indifferent
  • Underworld Good: favorite

Vector Companion Gifts:
  • Weapon: like
  • Military Gear: indifferent
  • Courting: indifferent, favorite
  • Luxury: like
  • Technology: indifferent
  • Republic Memorabilia: indifferent
  • Imperial Memorabilia: favorite
  • Cultural Artifact: love
  • Trophy: like
  • Underworld Good: indifferent

Lokin Companion Gifts:
  • Weapon: indifferent
  • Military Gear: favorite
  • Courting: indifferent
  • Luxury: favorite
  • Technology: love
  • Republic Memorabilia: like
  • Imperial Memorabilia: like
  • Cultural Artifact: indifferent
  • Trophy: indifferent
  • Underworld Good: like

Raina Companion Gifts:
  • Weapon: like
  • Military Gear: favorite
  • Courting: like, love
  • Luxury: like
  • Technology: indifferent
  • Republic Memorabilia: like
  • Imperial Memorabilia: love
  • Cultural Artifact: indifferent
  • Trophy: indifferent
  • Underworld Good: indifferent

Scorpio Companion Gifts:
  • Weapon: favorite
  • Military Gear: like
  • Courting: indifferent
  • Luxury: indifferent
  • Technology: love
  • Republic Memorabilia: indifferent
  • Imperial Memorabilia: indifferent
  • Cultural Artifact: like
  • Trophy: like
  • Underworld Good: indifferent
KAJIDIC
THE EMPIRE’S SECRET WEAPON
WEBSITE l VIDEO l PODCAST
"PvP Is Our Business"

Fugaru's Avatar


Fugaru
12.20.2011 , 09:30 AM | #4
Great initiative and I'm sure it will help a lot of new IA. Myself, I've been playing IA Operative since the beta and have been an active MMO blogger for 3 years now. I've allready made some posts about Imperial Agent, more specificly for Operative healing.

Feel free to add www.focused-insights.com to your link library. You'll find a basic introduction and leveling guide for IA Operative and also a look at keybinds. I've had a lot of great comments so far and since I started to blog about swtor, more and more people seem to find my pages.

I'm always open to suggestions and perhaps in the near future I'll look for people that can contribute to my blog with information and great insight about all swtor classes.

Obsivus's Avatar


Obsivus
12.20.2011 , 09:43 AM | #5
Appleartem: Thanks for the list!

Fugaru: Thanks, great, I'll add it!

All Agents out there, if you have information that is good for our newcomers send me a pm so I can add it.

Best regards
Imperial Agent - Guides, useful threads and links
Agent Obsivus - Bloodworthy - Guild Status: Searching Hardcore top PVP guild
Peek-a-boo, I see you. You can't see me, but I see you and my spotter can too. I pull the trigger, the beam flies. Jedi watch as one of their own dies

QisaBluevixen's Avatar


QisaBluevixen
12.20.2011 , 12:11 PM | #6
Nice. One suggestion: I'd use the torhead.com skill tree instead of torguild.com. Torguild.com has some errors still (Detonate Probe instead of EMP Discharge, for example).
I don't have a picture because I don't exist ... officially.
Q'isa - Battlemaster Lethality Operative
Qisa Bluevixen - Centurion MM Sniper
LFL in Alderaan Places

NostalGeek's Avatar


NostalGeek
12.20.2011 , 12:18 PM | #7
Quote: Originally Posted by QisaBluevixen View Post
Nice. One suggestion: I'd use the torhead.com skill tree instead of torguild.com. Torguild.com has some errors still (Detonate Probe instead of EMP Discharge, for example).
This

And keep it up!

Mousa's Avatar


Mousa
12.20.2011 , 12:50 PM | #8
Thanks for the great consolidation of information.

You have good info about energy above. Just thought I'd throw out a link I enjoyed reading.

bleedo's Avatar


bleedo
12.20.2011 , 01:28 PM | #9
Bump for sticky.

Amazing_Rando's Avatar


Amazing_Rando
12.20.2011 , 01:39 PM | #10
Great info, looking forward to updates. Thanks!