The Art of Shielding

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The Art of Shielding

Post by SPrinkZ »

The way to shield by SPrinkZ:

The true art to shielding is in predicting your opponent and using geographical advantages to weaken your opponents offensive and turn it into your own. Shielding is just that, defensive playing. Its not coming at your opponent like a mad man. As Spliff said one time, its like two boxers, you need to get the other one out of his rhythm and go for the kill.

Key points to shielding:

Do not waste the shield, use it for approximately .5 seconds at most. You don't know how much a split second can save you.

Do not waste ammo, this goes for anything; but especially a shielder. Offense is also a defense in this case. Where you shoot dictates where a person will go. That is a mind game in itself, if you fake your aim to be crappy(which I have done)you can sometimes outwit them by using that.

Do not underestimate ANYONE. As a shielder you can't fool around, there is no room for mistakes or mistimed shielding. As soon as you make a mistake it destroys your rhythm. If your rhythm is thrown out and your close, I suggest going out in a blaze of glory, or blowing them to crap with a ton of mines and nades and rockets. If your far away, rocket jump out of the way and run up a cliff and stay out of the way until you can regain your shield juice, then go back and attack.

Know what weapon to use:

IMPORTANT: A shielder should ALWAYS have, rocket, proxy, homer. Its the most effective. Let me name all of the combo's and their usefulness.

Proxy + Proxy + Rocket: This combo is only effective at VERY close range or when your on a steep angle or when your opponent is running up a cliff, if you land the proxy and then the rocket it should throw off their rhythm if they are a shielder this is what I would probably call a 'shield breaker.' Or reverse the combo and you can throw off their rhythm again. Remember slow, to fast shots can easily addle a rookie shielder.

Proxy + Homer + Proxy: I call this a 'noob destroyer.' This will eliminate anyone with a low amount of skill, or force them to use their syringe immediately, the object of this combo is to land the first proxy as close to them as possible, fire a homer, and time the proxy to when the homer should hit. Its an instant kill. Its effective on Shielders a bit, but a good shielder can avoid shots like those and even avoid nearly 60-90% of the damage from the combo.

Proxy + Homer: Usally used to just rattle the opponent up. It can be switched around as well, either way it has the same effect. Reversed it is more effective if you time the proxy to when the homer hits.

Rocket + Rocket + Proxy: Used to merely throw off someones rhythm, two slow shots to get their confidence up and think that your going to sling some more. Then land a fast hit with a proxy, then follow up with another combo to try and throw off their rhythm a little more.

|Grenade| Mine + Rocket: Drop a grenade then run over it and use it to propel you forward and then fly into and drop a mine and a rocket on them. Try to time the shot so they land at the same time, usally an instant kill if you have been battling long and their health is at half.

Advanced techniques:

These are the techniques that I never taught anyone but a FEW of my students, but I don't care now, I might as well teach them to you. They might help in SOME combat situations. They are very VERY situational, but brutally effective.

Mist Attack: I named it that because its sort of like an ambush. You are within close range, you drop a mine, when they fire their next proxy it should block vision between you two, time that next proxy shot he makes drop the grenade while the mist is up, or drop it and make sure it explodes AFTER the mist is there, fly through it and use a rocket, a 'nade, a mine. Whatever you want. Kirby was very susceptible to this, in my first duel against him when I only started in my 3rd month. We dueled I got 7 kills on him out of 20. I used that technique that I newly acquired and got 5 kills out of Kirby that way. He eventually caught on and threw a nade into the ambush and thats how it is countered.

Homer Bend: Simply put its shooting the homer a different way to make it hit from different angles, the best use is when your on a cliff and you know if you shoot regulary it will go on a hook downward. Aim it down and it will fly close to the ground and smash them. It takes alot of practice to do it right though and to do it effectively so be wary. You can also shoot it over a small cliff, experiment and find new uses for it, I never used this all the time in combat, its very situational so don't abuse it.

Bomber: Some players like Semore can't handle a super rush from the base, drop 15 mines in your base, and let go... If you know where he normally camps then just go, do not use your shield juice, just let a few rockets go and a proxy or two. If you get REALLY close drop a mine or a 'nade on your descent.

Homer dodging: The secret to this is moving to get the least amount of splash damage or none at all if possible, a homer will HOOK around if you avoid it, but it will come back and hit you. If your on an elevated slanted kind of piece of terrain, use it to your advantage. Run the homer above you, or on the right of you, whichever way you see the homer hooking, force it into the ground behind you or beside you. Without this technique your only 3/4 a true shielder.

Knowing your opponent:

Know what your opponent is using, and adapt to a style that can take on theirs. If someone is a cliff user, see where they like to 'pop up' and fire a proxy, and predict it if you'd like, or sneak up on them. If they use a shield, use shielder combo's to throw them off. If they are a jetpacker, watch out for rushes and use a 'noob destroyer' combo.

Strategies I have:

Strategy is the basis of a shielders entire rhythm and goal. Some strategies counter others. I have a few strategies that counter STYLES not strategies.

Cliff hanger: This is my base strategy, very very effective. If you can stay ONTOP of the cliff and not ON the side, you can fire rockets down and use any weapon effectively except the homers which aren't too great unless you use the 'homer bend' technique or are on equal ground or on a slight elevation.

Cliff runner: Perfect to fight off homer abusers, ABSOLUTELY the perfect way to counter a homer abuser. If someone is being a zealot with his homers just stay in the elevation of the cliff, on the slanted part and run across it, when they fire a homer, dodge the homer. You just keep spamming them until they run out of homers, if they switch to rockets, switch to this next strategy.

Even: Try to keep your opponent on equal ground with you, as long as he doesn't abuse homers or he likes to abuse rockets alot, just spam him to death with proxy + homer combos, and keep yourself near a cliff, the cliff runner and even go hand in hand, so switch them up every now and then.

Surprise!: Using the cliff of v.small is a good example. Pop over a cliff and fire whatever, your aim needs to be good for this hit and run guerila like warfare. Its not very effective, only use this when most of your options have been depleted, in SOME cases its effective, kind of situational.

Defensive whore: The most sluttiest way to win. I HATE IT! GOD IT SUCKS AND ITS ANNOYING! No wait, its actually not. Quite effective actually. Ever heard of card counting? Well learn how to count missles, make sure your about 5 or so ahead, make them deplete all of theirs, then come up and rape them, or make sure they deplete one of them and change your strategy according to what they CAN'T USE, if they cannot use homers keep a long range battle on even ground at all times. Abuse your homers then, if they run out of proximity missles they are pretty much screwed, type "U SUK LOL!" and begin to bash them, throw flamboyant homosexual remarks to piss them off and pound them and go. "OMFG A HOMO BEET U LOL WTF." Quite effective indeed. If they out of rockets, its not too much of a big deal, but close range combat will be your best bet, if you're really psycho, count grenades and mines too. You gotta be some sort of God though to count this all and not have your head explode. So good luck.


Items usage is probably just as important IF not more important than the weapons you use. Mines, Grenades, And a health syringe is the base setup for any shielder. Flares are SOMETIMES used, I will explain their usefulness, which is nil at a high level of play.

Grenades - These are so important to a shielders game its not even funny. Atleast for mine that is ;). Grenades allow me to jump out of the way and rush easily. Also to disrupt attacks and destroy mines that might be close by. A MUST HAVE.

Strategies with the grenades:

Mine popping: Just throw a grenade on a mine, when your in close range mines will seek you if they dig into the ground and your near by. So I suggest that you throw a grenade on it and destroy it, the reason you do this and not fire a rocket is because you can shoot while your doing it.

Rushing: Very simple tactic, throw a grenade, when your close to it, it gives you a boost, try to have a nitro available so you can get an extra boost, it can send you fast if you are way ahead of it. Try to aim all the way down, throw and run over it, then rush. Only do it when your confident they cannot counter a rush. Some players get annihilated from being rushed.

Avoidance: Use these instead of a nitro, they send you farther and no juice is used, not suggested... Unless this is what you want to do. Its like the rush except you can throw it to the area you want, make sure your near it and let it fling you whichever way you want to go. Usally I'd send myself left or right to dodge a proxy. In some cases its good if you want to dodge a homer and make it crash into a wall or the ground.

Mines - A MUST HAVE. If you DO NOT have mines, you are DEAD. Mines are the most useful item for a shielder, and will save you 5 times if you use it correctly 5 times.

Strategies with mines:

Proxy/homer blockers: Throw this out and stay behind it keep it inbetween you and your opponent. So when they fire their next proxy it will take the blast rather than you. In some rare cases a homer lock at the end will be put on the mine and it will go after the mine. Lucky you huh?

Rushing: You can use this with a grenade to create a more powerful, and faster rush... I'd only suggest this when your not in the line of fire and want to pop over a cliff and rush.

Proxy/homer blockers(aerial): Throw this where you think the next shot will come, this might take practice but becomes easy once you get the hang of it, you'll need this when you fight jetpackers.

Syringe - The easiest thing to use, but commonly used wrong. One hit of the key and what happens? Your health goes up. Now I'm going to explain WHEN you should use it.

When to use a syringe: Use the syringe so when you do regain your health, its not at the top of it, use it when your about 3/4 down. So you get the FULL boost from the syringe. The longer you can wait the better. Just don't wait too long.

Flares - Stupid, just stupid. I'll explain their usage anyways.

Distract homers: Thats all they can do, send homers off. Only a pussy needs flares, if you can't homer dodge well, then... Well you suck. So don't use flares, if you do. Kill yourself. j/k

Simple techniques: Some of the best techniques start from the beginning, these are the easiest techniques that shielders need to know how to do.

Shielding - The shield itself can be turned on and off, it absorbs the hits, depending on where they hit you. If they are direct it will absorb a good deal of it, but about 10% I suppose will get through or maybe 20%. So try to make sure the shots that DO hit, don't hit you head on.

How long to have the shield on: You should only have your shield on for about .5 seconds at most. A split second can add up if you are consistent, it might end up saving your life.

When to turn it on: Turn it on about a mines throw away I suppose, try to get it on and off fast.

Dodging: Dodging is easy for me, some of you have a hard time eh? Well heres a big secert, never move side to side or straight forward, always stay on angles, whether you believe it or not, it throws off trajectory. Most people can't percieve your depth and confuse it.

Move on diaganols for most of the time.

Nitro dodge: This is simple, a short jump using the nitro. Lets say your running right then you use the nitro jump left on their next attack. Lets say they are going to fire a proxy the way your going, jump the opposite way and hit the nitro. Shield lightly as if the attack hits you. It might be stupid, but atleast you didnt take damage. Usally you'll be totally missed.

How to know when someones rhythm is off -This is very hard to do, most people don't know when to go in for the kill. So let me tell you a secert. Check their health at first, if they begin to fire incorrectly, and move frantically all over and start throwing alot of mines and grenades. Thats a tell tale sign they feel they are screwed. When they do that back away and hammer them with any combo, especially a shield breaker, it will crack them open like an egg.

Frantic: This is very common in noobish shielders, they will run forward tossing anything they can. Just nitro jump back and drop a mine and a rocket. Usally that will finish them.

Odd jumping: When they start jumping alot its usally because they have no juice left and need to regain it, concentrate on hitting them rather than just shooting for once.

Alternate strategy: When someone changes their strategy, or style. Like they go from all proxy's to all rockets, and I'm not talking about when they ran out of them. If they are just firing rockets at you, thats usally to keep you back while they can regain their shield juice.

Run away: Some people tend to just run away. Sometimes this can be a ruse. Don't fall for it always, unless you see smoke. Shoot them, chase them, whatever you want to do. Just make sure you concentrate hard on disrupting them with rockets. They will usally leap out of the way when they are running. Use that to fire a proxy.

Onto one of the most DIFFICULT lessons, this will change the way you think about shielding possibly forever...

1v2 battling - This will explain how I, and other shielders are able to play 4v1 or even as I have done 14v1.

The weak link:
Usally in a group of packers or shielders alike, there is a weak link. Always go after the weakest person, less people shooting at you... The better.

Rusing: Most people get really ballsy when they are on the side with the most guys and your the lone man. So run back, they will usally chase, blast them out of the sky.

Five on one to one on one: No shielder truly fights 5 at once if he's sane or if their aim sucks. What you do is, you hide. Use rushing techniques to finish them off one by one, or destroy them as they come out of the base. Doing this takes ALOT of concentration. I have done a TRUE 2v1 before. Its not easy, trust me. Stay long range and hammer one. Dodge proxys like normal and be careful, its two shooting at you, try to herd them next to eachother so you don't get confused. It takes practice to do this right, but you too can look like some shielding God.

Death combos: Use death combos to destroy them. Gather their syringes. Or leave one next to you, hammer a guy fiercly, then grab the syringe in the field and hammer away. You can be wreckless and dangerous this way.

This is my guide to shielding. I hope you enjoyed it.

Last edited by SPrinkZ on Sun Apr 11, 2004 2:26 am, edited 12 times in total.
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Evil Smartie Genious
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Post by SPrinkZ »

Through observing my own mistakes (mainly because I currently suck), I have discovered a few things that might also aid in combat:

Rockets are great, why you might ask? Simply because, a well shot rocket will detonate their mine, and leave them with little to no ability to retreat, this is a perfect time to use other tools in your arsenal.

Homers are also good to get around mines, I already explained that though, you need to visualize your own shield juice, as well as theirs, try to visualize how much they might have. Make a guess, the better you can calculate their fuel, the better choices you can make on the field.

Going with a rocket verses a proximity may be all it takes...

If they have only 1/5 of a tank left, and you shoot a rocket they will be barely able to avoid it, and will be left frantically trying to regain tempo, this is a good opportunity.

Also, grenades can be tossed quite far, so remember that, if someone is relatively close and they are shooting at you, throw a grenade their way, or in their path.


If you're really clever, use the grenades to dictate their movement, and follow it up with a ground rocket (a rocket shot on a flat plain, but directed to hit their feet). This will force them to be hit with a grenade or a rocket, or perhaps both.

Just somethings I've noticed since my return to being pwnd.

Also I've gained new respect for flares and the sniper rifle, even though the sniper rifle is virtually useless when they are under close fire and a lot of flying around is happening.
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Reg the Smooth Operator
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Re: The Art of Shielding

Post by Salazar »

Bumping for Accuracy and Relevance.
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