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When I play FPS games, I find that I can rarely kill people before they kill me; often a whole SMG clip doesn't take them down, while they hit me with a few pistol shots and I die.

I think this is just me being very poor at aiming. I go for the neck, so the recoil hits the head... How else can I kill people more often?

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I've made the question a bit more general, I think this can benefit more players than only those of CS:S. –  user56 May 8 '11 at 16:38
I meant to give it something of a general feel. –  The Communist Duck May 8 '11 at 16:46
In just about everything besides CS, I aim for the chest. It seems like these less-damaging shots are far more likely to hit (for me) so the kill comes faster on average. –  Puddingfox May 8 '11 at 17:17
Somehow I don't feel qualified to answer this –  badp May 9 '11 at 6:57
use aimbots lol –  Esq Feb 21 '14 at 8:59

5 Answers 5

up vote 20 down vote accepted

It depends on the game of course but here are some rules that you may find helpful:

  1. Don't spray, make every bullet count.

    For shotguns and sniper rifles it means that must be confident that you are going to hit your enemy when you shoot. At first it might become even harder to kill someone but it's a proper way to improve your aim.

    For assault rifles it means that (again, depends on the game) you should shoot in short bursts making a tiny half-second breaks to decrease the spread.

  2. Learn shooting techniques like drag-shot or twitch-shot

  3. A good mouse and mouse sensitivity that suits you. I think majority (debatable I guess...) of professional gamers use rather low mouse sensitivity. They use the whole arm and the whole mouse carpet to turn 180 and use their wrist for precise movement. It is also important to have enough space to move your mouse. I feel extremely uncomfortable when there is something fragile on the same table where I sit...

  4. Turn off mouse acceleration. Everywhere: in mouse drivers, in OS settings, in the game. Most people agree that it helps but there are a few guys who like to have it on.

  5. Turn off vertical synchronization, tune your network settings. For source games cl_interp, cl_updaterate, cl_cmdrate etc can make a difference.

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+1 though I don't agree with turning off vertical sync, that it actually helps anything is a myth. –  BlueRaja - Danny Pflughoeft May 8 '11 at 20:55
Well, vsync usually causes problems with fps so I like to disable it and when I enable it I don't see any difference. –  Lauri May 9 '11 at 6:04
Since you grouped vsync with the net settings, it might imply that it is related to the netspeed/tickrate in UT (interesting read whether you've played the game or not). Personally, I don't think having it on or off really makes a difference in any game (gameplay-wise). –  Jeff Mercado May 9 '11 at 6:22
Could you try and summarise drag-shot and twitch-shot for those of us who may not be able to watch the youtube video (or perhaps simply do not want to)? +1 anyway! :) –  Matthew Iselin May 9 '11 at 8:14
It's all about moving your crosshair onto an enemy in one drag/one twitch using your muscle memory even if the target isn't in your field of view anymore. For sniper rifles it goes like this : 1) spot a target, 2) get it approximately in the center of your screen, 3) scope and calculate the distance to the target 4) drag your mouse and shoot before you even see the next frame. It allows to fire rapidly and to move freely because most of the time you're going to be not scoped. –  Air May 9 '11 at 20:46

This is entirely dependent on the game, but learn whether your guns are hitscan or projectile.

Hitscan weapons have their bullets travel instantly; a hit or miss is calculated as soon as you pull the trigger. Don't rely on visual feedback alone to determine if a weapon is hitscan -- depending on how the bullets are animated, they may appear to be slower than they really are. The most important thing here is that you shouldn't lead with Hitscan weapons, as doing so will only make you miss.

Projectile weapons, on the other hand, have actual projectiles that need to hit the target to do damage, so you do want to lead your shots.

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caveat: You shouldn't lead with hitscan only if you have a decent ping with the server (I'd say ~80 and below). Otherwise you have to compensate for the lag. –  Jeff Mercado May 9 '11 at 4:28
@Jeff - oftentimes, the game will attempt to do this for you. –  Raven Dreamer May 9 '11 at 5:56
also pullets; pellets + bullets = pullets. >.< –  Raven Dreamer May 9 '11 at 5:57

Play lot. Play often.

Only way to get better is to play. At first it may seem that you are not getting any progress. There isn't any tricks to get better. You just need to play.

Deathmatch servers can help you get faster, you don't need to wait for the next round to train aiming.

On strategy side, you can watch some pro games. Watching good players playing can help you understand the high level strategy and overall idea what is good to do.

Its also important that your sensitivity is perfect for you.

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Take the time to practice all of these things by yourself, in a practice game or against bots

  1. Mindset - protect yourself first and be unaffected by enemy gunshots
  2. Control - every movement in battle needs to be deliberate, and perfectly executed
  3. Take Cover - a single mistake here will cost you your life
  4. Dodge Bullets - know how to sprint from cover to cover, with the right timing
  5. Aim and Shoot - specific strategies to improve your aim (covered in video extensively)
  6. Kill Entire Squads - practice your skills in a live situation against multiple enemies

REMEMBER: where is the enemy? how many are there? do i have good cover? can they see me? will i get hit? where am i looking? 360 degrees? or tunnel vision? can i get a shot in? shoot to scare or kill?

position, safety, and awareness is infinitely more important than trying to "kill someone before they can kill you" - a common mistake to make especially if you are not thinking clearly

I made a video series with some serious tactical and training/practicing strategies to help you get better at shooting games. It's a 4-part training series about an hour in total.

This one is probably what you're most interested in...

Part 2: (practicing strategies)

If you like that video you should watch the rest because they will help you even more.

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Please summarize at least some of the advice in the video. –  kotekzot Mar 3 '14 at 0:01

Drink caffeinated drinks and rest beforehand if you're tired!

Use every advantage you can by learning the levels, predicting other players, laying traps or attacking when they're busy. Players that shoot first or more accurately are not always the ones that kill and shooting at the first enemy is not necessary the best plan, especially in games such as CS:S where players are so fragile.

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Caffinated drinks could cause you to twitch when trying to aim a shot. I wouldn't recommend it. –  Zibbobz Jan 16 '14 at 21:32

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