Reference & Analysis Enemy Archetypes

Are you sure you want to remove this bookmark?

Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag Official Digital Strategy Guide
for PC, PS3, PS4, Wii U, Xbox 360, Xbox One

Redeem code for this guide

Sample chapters

Extras

Primer

Freedom Cry DLC

Multiplayer

Walkthrough

The Story So Far

Reference & Analysis

Side Quests

Enter Code

Close

Chapter Locked

Unlock the full guide now!

Redeem code

Close

Reference & Analysis Enemy Archetypes

All opponents in Assassin’s Creed IV belong to one of several specific enemy archetypes, and will exhibit behaviors, proficiencies and weaknesses specific to their class. In this section, we examine their strengths and weaknesses, and offer tips on how you can avoid their attacks and disable them without complications. Though you will encounter them in a variety of different uniforms, each archetype is easily identified by certain distinguishing features – such as their build, or favored weapon.

Soldier

Soldiers are by far the most abundant enemy variety encountered during the first half of the story, and remain common in later Sequences.

Soldiers have no resistances, and attack with a single lunging strike.

They are extremely susceptible to bullets. Even “snap shots” are lethal against them.

In battles where you face several opponents, removing the majority of soldiers via a Kill Streak (which could include Scouts engaged in the battle) can make it easier to take control of a combat situation.

Though they have a degree of free running prowess, soldiers are slower than Kenway in a straight-line sprint and have limited climbing ability.

Gunner

Gunners are usually encountered on rooftops or watchtowers, where they act as sentries commissioned to punish all trespassers severely.

When you notice a Gunner is about to fire at you while you are busy in melee combat, you can use any nearby target as a human shield by pressing . You can also “cancel” their ranged attack by hitting them with a pistol shot or a blowpipe dart.

Once they have detected Kenway, Gunners will open fire at regular intervals while he remains within range. If you cannot avoid them entirely, try to move out of sight as quickly as you can. It also helps to use natural cover elements (sloped rooftops and chimneys in particular) to disappear from view. If Kenway is hit by a Gunner shot while climbing or free running, use the Catch Back move – press towards the closest surface with an available ledge – to avoid plummeting to the ground.

Gunners will engage Kenway in standard melee combat at close range. In these situations, their behavior is functionally identical to that of generic soldiers – with the sole exception that they usually require two body shots from a pistol to kill.

This enemy archetype is a constant danger until you obtain the Blowpipe. At that point, they are relegated to the status of temporary nuisance easily pacified by Sleep Darts – or, with Berserk Darts, a powerful ally when you need to cause a chaotic distraction…

Brute

Slow but relentlessly aggressive, Brutes are easily identified by their imposing stature.

Brutes are immune to standard attacks, Combo Kills, conventional Counter Kills and Kill Streaks. Attempting these moves against them will even cause you to take damage as they repel you.

Pressing when they attack will lead to a dodge rather than a standard counter opportunity, and for good reason: their blows are extremely heavy, and cause massive injuries if they connect. However, if you use to direct your evasive roll behind them, there’s a tiny window of opportunity to press to kill them immediately by stabbing their unprotected backs. This is much easier if you are using an appropriated musket.

The safest and usually most time-effective way to kill a Brute is to perform the Break Defense move twice to knock them from their feet, then finish them off instantly as they lie prone. You can also eliminate them with two pistol shots, or a single headshot.

Brutes can throw grenades whenever the corresponding icon appears. These cause high damage (and a loss of footing) within a fixed area. To avoid this, simply move out of the blast radius.

Brutes are much slower than Kenway when running, and cannot climb. From a higher vantage point or a safe distance, you can shoot them with ranged weapons or make an easy escape.

Scout

Scouts are agile adversaries primarily defined by their speed.

Scouts attack with three-hit combos. If one blow penetrates Kenway’s defenses, be ready to parry or counter subsequent strikes.

Scouts are immune to normal attacks, blocking Kenway’s attempts to initiate a combo assault. However, they fall instantly to Counter Kills and attacks during Kill Streaks: it’s just a matter of waiting for the right opening. They are also vulnerable to the Break Defense technique and can be profitably disarmed.

These opponents are perhaps more dangerous when you have a pressing need to escape combat. Though a Scout’s free running and climbing prowess is no match for Kenway, they are 30% faster in a straight line sprint, and can therefore outpace him in a footrace. As they run behind Kenway, they will dive and tackle him. When a sighting or your intuition informs you that a Scout is close at heel, tap to perform a short jump to foil their tackle attempt.

Captain

The Captain is the ultimate enemy archetype, and is effectively a composite of the Brute and Scout classes. These are the toughest enemies you will meet.

Captains are immune to every standard melee combat technique. Their only weakness resides in the Parry move. Simply hold when they attack you, and Kenway will block the assault and follow up with a kick that will stun the Captain for several seconds. You can use this window of opportunity to finish them off in any way you see fit: a full Combo if you have the time, a Kill Streak, or an assassination (from behind or while they lie prone after two successive uses of the Break Defense ability) if you need to act fast.

Alternatively, you can take a Captain down with a single pistol bullet manually aimed to the head, though you are unlikely to have the time to complete this during larger brawls. They can withstand up to three bullets fired to the body before they fall. Blowpipe darts are highly effective against them.

Captains can draw a pistol at any moment, though their tendency to use this firearm is much lower than with Gunners. Sprint behind cover or use a human shield to avoid injury.

ENEMY OVERVIEW

MoveSoldierScoutGunnerBruteCaptain

Attack

Weak

Immune

Weak

Immune

Immune

Combo Kill

Weak

Weak

Weak

Immune

Immune

Kill Streak

Weak

Weak

Weak

Immune

Immune

Break Defense

Weak

Weak

Weak

Weak

Immune

Ranged Attack

Weak

Weak

Weak

Weak

Weak

Counter Kill

Weak

Weak

Weak

Immune

Immune

Counter Disarm

Weak

Weak

Weak

Immune

Immune

Counter Throw

Weak

Weak

Weak

Immune

Immune

Special Counter

Weak

Weak

Weak

Immune

Immune

Parry

-

-

-

Immune

Weak

Notes