The best Veteran build in Warhammer 40K: Darktide

Darktide veteran build - the veteran aiming a lasgun
(Image credit: Fatshark)

The best Darktide Veteran build sets you up to take on the worst that chaos can throw at you, with an array of ranged weapons that makes them specialists at sniping. Whether they’re mowing down tides of pox walkers, or picking off the elite enemies that Darktide throws at you, the Veteran’s arsenal—from Plasma Rifle to the humble Shovel—gets the job done.

While the Veteran may be the king of ranged combat, they’re no slouch when they end up in the thick of the melee either. If you want to stay on top and see your team through to the end of the mission, just remember to constantly be sniping down dangerous elite enemies. If you’re new to the full Darktide release, you can find out more about Darktide’s classes, get the best Zealot build, or even the lowdown on the cosmetics if you’re sick of the prisoner-chic. So here’s the best Veteran build:

The best Darktide Veteran build

The Veteran Sharpshooter is great at cleaning up elite enemies from a distance, knocking them out with the Volley Fire ability before they can grind your team up to make exceptionally chaotic bread. Veterans pack a variety of support options and can maximize the potential of ranged weapons like the Bolter with their feats. 

Here's the melee weapon, ranged weapon, and curio stat priority I recommend for this build:

  • Melee Weapon: Munitorum Mk III Power Sword (with Brutal Momentum and/or Power Cycler) 
  • Ranged Weapon: Accatran Mk VId Recon Lasgun (with Sustained Fire and/or Infernus), Locke Mk IIb Spearhead Boltgun (with Pinning Fire)
  • Curio Stat Priority: Combat Ability Regeneration, then Max Health

And here are the recommended feats as well as when you can unlock them:

  • Confirmed Kill (rank five): Instantly recovers 25% Toughness on elite kill and an additional 25% Toughness over time.
  • Bio-Optic Targeting (rank fifteen): Volley Fire designates non-Ogryn elites and specialists as priority targets for all allies in coherency.
  • Duck and Dive (rank twenty): Dodging, Sprinting, or Sliding to avoid ranged attacks grants you 20% stamina.
  • Deadshot (rank twenty five): Using your ranged weapons alternate fire gives you 25% increased critical hit damage and 60% reduced weapon sway but makes you lose 10% stamina a second and 5% for every shot fired.

The key feat for this Veteran build is Deadshot, which uses up your stamina to ramp up your weapon's damage, trigger burn effects on the Recon Lasgun, and make your weapon far easier to control in the case of the Boltgun. With Duck and Dive, you can be sure in many situations that you’ll be recovering an incredible amount of stamina with each dodge, even with just a few ranged enemies taking potshots at you. Combined with Volley Fire, this combination can absolutely melt even boss enemies

Since your focus should be on eliminating elites and specials, Confirmed Kill really helps you ignore nearby enemies during those critical seconds you need to take down the biggest threat and then recover. During large ambushes or tense moments, Bio-Optic Targeting will also be there to help your team pick up the slack since it shares those critical priority target highlights so everyone can see them and open fire. While it’s not as critical, it’s also incredibly useful to take Demolition Stockpile, since a free grenade every minute is a huge boon—especially when you can stagger bosses to make their weak spot trivially easy to hit for your Volley Fire.

There are good reasons to take any of the rank 30 feats, though I personally prefer Counterfire for the 25% weak spot damage bonus and ability to highlight shooter enemies. You may find that your team needs you to take The Bigger they Are… to help absolutely shred the larger bosses. I use an Accatran Mk VId Recon Lasgun with the Infernus blessing to take advantage of the critical hit bonus from Deadshot to stack up a ton of burn damage on both elite and boss enemies. There have been many times that an elite has tucked into cover or run around a corner after I unloaded on them but couldn’t finish them, only to have them die from the burn and trouble my team no more. 

As backup and for clearing hordes, I run the Munitorum Mk III Power Sword which is absolutely unmatched in melee weapons. It's able to cleave entire hordes when energized while also cutting through armored and elite enemies. You’ll have to be patient with your curios since Combat Ability Regeneration isn’t all that common, but shortening the cooldown on Volley Fire is always worth it. In the meantime, you’ll never regret additional Max Health or Toughness while you wait for the perfect curios to come along.

If you’re having trouble deciding on what to load up with in Darktide, it helps a lot to better understand the weapon symbols before you waste a bunch of time and effort using the Darktide crafting systems to make the wrong equipment for your play style. 

Philip Palmer

Phil is a contributor for PC Gamer, formerly of TechRadar Gaming. With four years of experience writing freelance for several publications, he's covered every genre imaginable. For 15 years he's done technical writing and IT documentation, and more recently traditional gaming content. He has a passion for the appeal of diversity, and the way different genres can be sandboxes for creativity and emergent storytelling. With thousands of hours in League of Legends, Overwatch, Minecraft, and countless survival, strategy, and RPG entries, he still finds time for offline hobbies in tabletop RPGs, wargaming, miniatures painting, and hockey.