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Granted, I'm fairly early on in the game still, but so far, I'm having a hard time finding a good balance in combat. I've found that by far the easiest way to take down machines is to simply hide in some tall grass, use lure call, wait for the machine to eventually lumber over to my position and then silent strike.

However, there's two problems with this approach. First, it's boring. Second, it seems the AI is smart enough to catch on after a while, and after you've laid waste to enough of their brethren, machines will no longer come to you.

My alternate approach is to creep up on a machine and then try to put it down through a combination of elemental arrows and melee attacks. This is fairly effective as well, but every other machine in the area will either swarm on your position or run away. The result is that you either end up in an epic battle that you barely survive or you're one-and-done.

Again, it could just be that I haven't progressed far enough, yet, but it seems like I'm missing something. How can I be a bit more active in my attacks while still maintaining some degree of stealth?

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    This seems relatively opinion-based, as everyone plays the game a different way... while there are some abilities that improve your use with bow or spear, you have plenty of weapons to choose from to approach various situations (tripcaster, ropecaster, sling, different bows, etc). Mar 6, 2017 at 16:43
  • It's no so much about weapon choice, at least from what I've seen so far. Actions taken in the open draw the attention of other machines, and there's only so much you can do while crouched in some tall grass. I guess I'm just looking for something in between. Does that make sense? Mar 6, 2017 at 16:48
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    I do, but again, you're going to get a variety of opinions on how people play; there is no one tried and true method for a game like this. Mar 6, 2017 at 16:48
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    Have you got as far as the first Sawtooth? Once outside the Embrace you start to encounter machines which are bigger and nastier and require more planning.
    – greg-449
    Mar 6, 2017 at 17:27
  • @greg-449: No, haven't gotten that far yet. So far, I can take everything with silent strike. However, that's kind of the point of this question. I know bigger and tougher things are coming, so I want to develop an appropriate combat style before I run into those completely unprepared. Mar 6, 2017 at 21:51

1 Answer 1

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My favorite strategy that blends stealth with action is to create a mess of tripwires between you and your prey while utilizing Concentration and Tearblast arrows to stealthily take out opponents from afar.

From what I can tell, setting tripwires (though very loud) is perceived as silent by Machines. By that I mean you can place them literally on top of/through Machines and they won't have any idea who did it. Even when walking into tripwires, Machines typically will not find you if you're hiding behind rocks or in tall grass.

tripwires

Once you've effectively set up a no-man's-land of crisscrossing tripwires in every direction (bear in mind that the maximum placeable at any time is 16), you can try getting headshots/destroying components of Machines. Another way to set these up is to basically fence a group of Machines by using tripwires. Electric will immobilize them and allow you to get a Critical Hit on however many were affected, while Blast wires will cause massive damage (and likely remove components).

If you are able to use them (they are on the Sharpshot bows), Tearblast arrows will do little to no damage, but will quickly remove the components of Machines (which effectively incapacitates them) and allow you to take them down more easily. Concentration will also help you hit these components and weak spots by slowing down time and zooming in, so it's very helpful for this.

If the Machine you're hunting notices you, they will most likely charge. At this point, they're extremely likely to run into at least one wire of your giant tripwire trap and then begin the process of stumbling into every other tripwire you've set. If this hasn't killed your prey yet, it should have come very close to doing so, at which point, you can use your weapon of choice to finish them off.

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    Also worth noting that if you're fighting a strong Machine and a bunch of lesser Machines, you can pretty easily take out the small ones with a mix of tripwires and arrows of your choice without attracting the attention of the big one.
    – Vemonus
    Mar 6, 2017 at 22:29
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    Worth a note that if you don't have a Tripcaster, you can do a similar setup with the placeable traps. Using the geography to your advantage as well, as machines can't climb cliffs. Totally agree that the game is all about the pre-engagement setup.
    – Neon1024
    Mar 7, 2017 at 11:51
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    I've noticed that some of the larger machines (like Sawtooths) will go way out of their way to avoid my tripwires when charging me. (This has happened in both grassy and desert terrain.) At first I thought it was coincidence, but it's happened too often. On the plus side, they don't seem to exhibit this hyperintelligence when returning to their patrol route.
    – dg99
    Mar 7, 2017 at 13:53

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