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Necro's In Depth Guide to Shotguns

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After finding out about diamond camo from a Vikkstar video a couple of days after getting Black Ops II, I thought it would be cool to actually get diamond on something. At the time, I was infatuated with the R870, and since I've always been a shotgunner at heart (most games I played, I would prefer using shotguns, I was almost always the designated shotgunner in the group as well) I figured it would be the perfect gun class to get diamond on. And so started my journey getting the shotguns diamond.

It was a difficult journey, but about 2-3 weeks ago, I had finally done it. After getting the shotguns diamond, I figured I would spread the knowledge that I have gathered from using all the shotguns in the game, and tactics gained from using shotguns from this game, as well as past games. I will be discussing the role of the shotgunner in Call of Duty, tactics used to control range, the best accessories to utilize shotguns to their full potential, the best ways to obtain the diamond camo for shotguns, and give some general tips and tricks for using the shotguns in this game more effectively. Lets Begin, Shall We?

An Introduction to Shotguns

Shotguns serve up a unique role in the Call of Duty Niche. They excel at CQC, similar to sub-machine guns, but they sacrifice longer ranged ability for absolute power and ability within close to close-medium range. This makes them the absolute masters of close range, dealing high damage and stopping power within their niche, but they sacrifice the ability to do that high damage outside of close-medium range, and completely lose the ability to do damage outside a certain range.

In close range, this gun class hits as hard as a sniper rifle, delivering swift 1-2 hit kills in a short-medium range. Outside of this range however, you are at the complete mercy of your enemy, as you are pretty much outbeaten by any other gun at range. This means in order to do good with this class you have to very good at controlling the range in between you and your enemy.

Techniques used to control range:

  • Learning The Maps: One of the most important things a shotgunner can use to his advantage is map knowledge. Knowing where to stick around and travel on a map can better put him in situations where he has the advantage over the enemy, and overall net him alot if kills.
  • Flanking: If you are put in a situation where you see an enemy far off, going off the beaten path to suprise the enemy will almost always give you the upper hand.
  • Baiting: If you hear an enemy shoot at you or you get hit from behind with bullets, run to the nearest corner and turn it, then turn around and wait for him to turn the corner after you. The second he turns the corner, shoot him. This is rather situational, but can save your life in multitudes of situations.
  • Disabling: If you run into a person that isn't in your one hit kill range, and they have a weapon that can kill you from that range, throw a flash or concussion. With him disabled you now have two options: You can figure out a flank route and eliminate him while still stunned, or you can escape if he's really far away. Just try to avoid charging him head on while hes stunned, as he can still fire and if he is lucky or holding an automatic, it could very well spell out your demise. This can also work with a group of enemies, or if you are following behind an enemy, and you can't get him into one hit range.

Overall, The high one hit kill ability and pellet spread make this gun class rather popular, due to it being rather easy to pick up and do good with, but this gun class can be difficult to master and use it to its full potential. As long as you play your tactics and cards right, shotguns will allow for an absolute domination of close quarters combat. 

General Shotgun Tips

  • When going for One Hits, Long Barrel is your best friend.
  • In this game, shotguns are actually LESS accurate when hip fired, so you should only hip fire in extremely close ranges, or if you're caught off guard by an enemy.
  • Aim for the chest with buckshot firing Shotguns, as they do not grant headshot bonuses. Aiming for the head will only cause you to miss pellets on targets, and prevent you from getting a one hit kill at times. Since the chest is the biggest target of the body, that would be the best place to direct your fire
  • If you are looking for a good playlist for shotguns, Chaos Moshpit is the best, Nuketown 2025 and Hijacked are great maps for shotguns. 
    • If you don't have Nuketown 2025, your best bet would be to play either Hardpoint (protecting hardpoints net you alot of points) or Kill Confirmed (Shotguns allow you to be in a better tag-grabbing range for alot of points)

What it takes to get Diamond Camo on Shotguns

The Shotguns (and snipers) are unique in the fact that in order to get camos, you need to get One Hit Kills with them instead of Headshots. Though for balancing reasons, you have to get considerably more One Hit Kills (250) than you would Headshots (100). This really eases the process of getting gold with some shotguns (R870, KSG) and makes it more difficult for others (S12, M1216). Below is the List of things you need to do in order to unlock the camos. I separated them into tiers, tier 2 isn't unlocked until clearing tier 1, getting all of the tier 2 camos unlocks the camo in 3,

Tier 1

  • DEVGRU- Get 5 One Hit Kills with a Shotgun
  • A-TACS AU- Get 10 One Hit Kills with a Shotgun
  • ERDL- Get 25 One Hit Kills with a Shotgun
  • Siberia- Get 50 One Hit Kills with a Shotgun
  • Choco- Get 75 One Hit Kills with a Shotgun
  • Blue Tiger- Get 100 One Hit Kills with a Shotgun
  • Bloodshot- Get 150 One Hit Kills with a Shotgun
  • Ghostex: Delta 6- Get 200 One Hit Kills with a Shotgun
  • Kryptek: Typhon- Get 250 One Hit Kills with a Shotgun
    • Overall: The basic Camos. These camos can either be really easy to unlock, or very hard depending on the shotgun you are unlocking them with. Whether they be easy or hard to get, you should get them all in due time after learning the effective one hit kill range of the weapon and exploiting it. 

Tier 2

  • Carbon Fiber- Get 30 Revenge Kills with a Shotgun
    • Comment: This is just one of those "get it over time" camos. It's easier to just use the gun and forget that you have to get them then actually get them. Usually I get this camo before skulls, which is usually the last camo I go for. If you do happen to get skulls first though, and this is your last camo, the best bet is to look at the players name who killed you in the killcams and hunt them down recklessly and once you get them die and see the next persons name.
  • Cherry Blossom- Get 50 Kills with a Shotgun and no attachments equipped
    • Comment: See: Art of War.
  • Art of War- Get 50 Kills with a Shotgun and no perks equipped
    • Comment: These should be the camos you go for first (Especially if you're weapon is at Max Level and still needs to prestige), because Cherry Blossom and Art of War go hand in hand with eachother. Just make a class with a shotgun, no perks or attachments, a suped up pistol, and 2 lethal and tactical Grenades (Preferably Stuns, to stun an enemy and make them easier to eliminate). Before you try for these camos, it'd be best to prestige your weapon if you can. By the time you get the 50 kills, you would have already earned back some of your attachments.
  • Ronin- Get 5 Double Kills using a Shotgun
    • Comment: Another "Get it over time" camo. Though you will most likely get this camo rather quickly without even realizing it.
  • Skulls- Get 10 Bloodthirsty Medals using a Shotgun
    • Comment: And here we go, one of the most challenging and frustrating camos to obtain, or for me at least (I don't have a 5.0 kd). A quick warning: you will die on four kills, it will happen. Alot. It will also seem like even though you might have got bloodthirstys left and right while getting the first tier camos, when you actually try for it, it will be so frustrating. It's incredibly frustrating to get, but freaking worth it.
      • Overall: The difficulty of these challenges depend on two factors, your gun, and your skill with it. Whether it be easy or hard, these can all be accomplished over time.

Tier 3

  • Gold- Unlock all the camos for a Shotgun
    • Overall:Here we go, You unlocked what you wanted. Enjoy that awesome camo that has been sought by many since Cod4 pretty much (whith the exception of WAW and MW2). But you wanna know whats even more prestigious than a golden shotgun? A Swagnificent Golden Bedazzled Shotgun. For the top tier of camos, we will need to get gold on all of the Shotguns. If you can accomplish such a feat, you will be rewarded with the most swagnificent of camos.

Tier 4

  • Diamond- Unlock Gold Camo for all of the Shotguns
    • Overall: You have obtained a shotgun suitable for royalty. Use it responsibility, and use it like a Sir. If someone uses a shotgun on you, you can officialy put them in their place by serving them up a level of swag that can only be dished out by a faceful of lead delivered by a royal sceptre of destruction, served up by a privileged gentlemen like yourself. If that doesn't put them in their place, nothing will.

Remington 870 MCS

R-870 MCS Menu Icon BOII
The Remington 870 MCS is unlocked right off the bat as the default shotgun. It features an 8 rd. Tube Magazine, and a slow, Pump-Action fire rate. It's Powerful, Accurate, and overall a great shotgun to start out with. Despite being pump-action, this gun seems to pump slightly faster than pump-actions featured in previous Call of Duty titles. Despite this, it's still has a pretty slow rate of fire compared to other shotguns in the game, due to it's pump-action nature. However its fire rate is balanced by it's power and range.  It can even take down people rather decently in medium range, but it might take a few shots.

This was by far my easiest gun to get gold. It is my favorite shotgun, and is definately one of my best weapons in this game. Getting the one hits were not too hard as this thing one hits pretty frequently, and the second tier of challenges weren't terribly difficult either considering it's power and range. Overall a solid Shotgun, and a great shotgun to start off with. Id suggest getting this shotgun gold first to get into the Shotgun mode, and get you used to the play style associated with running a shotgun.

Remington 870 MCS Tips

  • When using this gun, it is best to aim quickly before you fire, to increase accuracy.

Overview
One Hit Kill Ability: 3/4
Fire Rate: 2/4
Range: 3/4
Difficulty: 2/4- One Hits
             2/4- Special Camos

Pro's
Powerful
Good Range
Slightly Fast Pump
Con's
Low Fire Rate
Lowest Capacity
Slow Dry Reload

Saiga 12

S12 Menu Icon BOII
The Saiga 12 can be unlocked as soon as Create-a-Class is unlocked at Lvl. 4, at the cost of 1 unlock token. It is the only Semi-Automatic Shotgun available in this game. It has less damage and range than the Remington 870 MCS, but it has a higher potential firerate, able to put out more shots quicker than the R870. It utilizes a 10 rd Detachable Box Magazine. Due to this it has one of the shortest dry reloads out of all the shotguns. It still has a relatively long reload time compared to other guns that utilize box magazines. It has relatively clear iron sights, which help it while aimed.

What I love about this shotgun is that it can be very versatile. With a Long Barrel, you can get decent one hits in close range, and kills out into close-medium range with a few more shells placed on target. This makes this a great shotgun for all the ranges that a shotgun can cover, as long as the user has a decent trigger finger. Overall a fun gun to use, but it wasn't as fun when I first used I because of one reason: Learning to get one hits.

This was one of the hardest guns to get gold, but it really wasnt that difficult. Once you equip a long barrel and study the ranges to get a good estimate of where the maximum one hit kill range is, it's not gonna be that difficult to get the 250 one hits. But this all comes with practice, after a few kills with the long barrel, you should start noticing a pattern of the approximate range that it will one hit in. Utilize that and you'll get them before you know it. The second camos aren't even that bad either, with it's fast fire rate, you can pick up one hits close and medium range hits with just a few more shells in your magazine.

S12 Tips

  • If they are in Close-Medium range, don't be afraid to use this gun as a semi-automatic rifle. As long as you keep all of your shots on target, you might be able to kill them before they kill you.

Overview
One Hit Kill Ability: 2/4
Fire Rate: 4/4
Range: 2/4
Difficulty: 3/4- One Hits
                    2/4- Special Camos

Pro's
Fast ROF w/ Good Trigger Finger
Very Versatile
Con's
Rather Low One Hit Capability
Slow Reload

KSG-12

KSG Menu Icon BOII
The KSG can be unlocked at Lvl. 34 at the cost of 1 unlock token. It is the second to last shotgun unlocked. It is a unique pump-action shotgun. It has the highest damage and range out of any shotgun in the entire Call of Duty Series, and is coupled with a high capacity 14rd. tube magazine. This gun is capable of this power due to the special round it fires, which is unique to any shotgun in prior CoD games.

This shotgun fires slugs, instead of the usual buckshot that most shotguns fire in CoD. Slug shells fire out one giant round as opposed to the multiple pellets that buckshot shells fire. This, combined with it possessing the slowest fire rate in it's class, make this weapon perhaps the trickiest shotgun to use in the game. This is because in order to kill someone, you have to hit your target directly with that one round. This shotgun is better used as a mid-ranged sniper rifle with higher mobility.


This is a skill weapon. If you are accurate with your shots, it rewards you greatly with the best one hit range out of all the shotguns. If you mess up, it's likely your fault. The thing about this weapon is not everyone knows how to use it properly. First things first, if you aren't aiming, youre not using it right. But aiming is a pretty obvious thing, but when to aim is also important. You should always aim when entering buildings or turning corners. It's is also good time to aim when your about to enter a heated area of the map, like  Objective points (Hardpoints, Domination Flags, Demolition Bomb Sites), or places combat is likely to occur in (The middle of the boat on Hijacked). 

There are a few things that can mess up your accuracy however even when aiming. Going from standing to crouched or vice-versa mid-fire will make your slug as innacurate as hip firing. Also make sure you are aimed in at least 1 second before firing if the target is unaware of your position, as aiming quickly will also mess up your accuracy.

Overall this is probably one of the easiest guns to get one hits with if used correctly, but the secondary challenges might be a doozy even for people with a general understanding of the weapon. I had a relatively bad experience getting Bloodthirstys with this weapon because I kept getting caught in bad situations (ex. Running into an enemy on my fourth kill and getting beaten out in short range by a smg because I panicked and aimed too quickly).

My best suggestion for getting bloodthirstys with this weapon is by playing it tactically. Have a teammate get you UAVs to figure out the locations of your enemies and eliminate them before they knew what hit them, study their movements and develop a flank route, etc. In the end with slugs, you are the hunter, they are the prey. Track them down and eliminate them, and you will prosper.

KSG Tips

  • These are not your BF3 slugs. The slugs in this game actually have a drop off distance, so you can't snipe with it.
  • Aiming is the key to getting kills with this gun, hip firing is an unsuccessful tactic with this gun, as it is completely inaccurate.
  •  Taking advantage of UAVs and VSATs are another great way to pick up kills, as it gives you ample time to prepare your weapon for the kill. 

Overview
One Hit Kill Ability: 4/4
Fire Rate: 1/4
Range: 4/4
Difficulty: 1/4- One Hits
             4/4- Special Camos

Pro's
Insanely Powerful
Excellent Range
Large 14rnd Tube Magazine
Con's
Low Fire Rate
Slugs are difficult to land on targets
Longest Dry Reload

M1216

M1216 Menu Icon BOII
The M1216 can be unlocked at Lvl. 52, at the cost of 1 unlock token. It is the last shotgun unlocked. It is the only Fully-Automatic Shotgun available in this game, and it also boasts the highest ammunition capacity due to it's unique 16 round rotating magazine. This does come with some trade-offs however. This shotgun has the lowest damage and range out of all of the shotguns, making it extremely difficult to kill outside of close range and making it hard to one hit kill outside of very close range. Also it's unique magazine only allows for 4 round bursted fire.

It holds 4 rounds in each section of the magazine, and after those rounds are expended, the magazine has to be rotated to cycle another four rounds before firing again. Luckily the magazine rotation process is rather quick (less than a second) and the reload is about on par with the S12's reload time, which isn't the fastest in the game but it is the fastest of the Shotguns.


Oh boy, was this shotgun fun to get gold with. Similar to the SVU-AS, this is the weapon that it comes down to. Your efforts on this weapon will determine whether you can get diamond camo or not. Those who try for it and want it, will perservere, those who will not will have their dreams crushed here. The other shotguns were light work compared to this. But as a veteran of this gun i have some words of wisdom. It actually gets better the more you work at it. 

Once you get long barrel and start to get used to the one hit kill range, this gun won't be as difficult as it seems. It will just be another shotgun at that point. After the 250 one hits, the special challenges were alot easier to me, because I knew the gun alot better. This was the only gun that I have ever gotten gold that I got Skulls befor Carbon Fiber. So just study the gun, get a long barrel on it, and with enough perseverance the impossible will suddenly seem slightly possible.

M1216 Tips

  • It's a four round burst weapon, so hitting and killing your target before you have to rotate the mag is key for survival in head-on firefights.
  • If getting One Hits seem too difficult, you can always try hardcore. But if you don't play hardcore, (like me) I wouldn't suggest it. Sure I got more One Hits, but I got alot less kills due to campers and other variables (you thought the Bouncing Betty was bad in Core Modes...) in the end I got more one hits, but I went negative .5ish almost every game. I found that just using this gun (if your good at core modes) will most likely net you the same amount of one hits and more kills in general. So you can try it, but if it doesn't work out stick to core modes.

Overview
One Hit Kill Ability: 1/4
Fire Rate: 3/4
Range: 1/4
Difficulty: 4/4- One Hits
             1/4- Special Camos

Pro's
Fast ROF
Large 16rd Magazine
Con's
Low Range & Damage
Rechamber Every 4 Rounds

Attachments

Attachments are very useful as they can make, or break the gun. I have a list of the attachments available to all of the shotguns below. Some attachments work better for certain shotguns than others, so make sure to check here if you want to know if the attachment you use is actually beneficial to it or not.

  • Lvl. 2: Reflex Sight- Replaces the Iron sights with a Reflex Sight. 
    • R870: The R870's sights are relatively clear, and considering you will only be aiming momentarily before each kill, it's not entirely.
    • S12: The S12's sights are pretty clear, but since you will most likely be aiming alot with this gun, It's really up to preference.
    • KSG: Since you will be aiming constantly with this weapon, the clearer sights and slight zoom advantage can help you out alot with this weapon.
    • M1216: The sights are relatively clear on is weapon, so it's not really nessecary
  • Lvl. 3: Long Barrel- The Long Barrel Increases Range, makes this gun perform better in medium range, and makes the gun get more one hits in farther ranges. 
    • R870: This is an excellent attachment for any shotgun, and while the R870 already has excellent range, any extra range is always appreciated on shotguns.
    • S12: This gun makes this weapon cover the medium range better, taking less shells to kill down range, which makes this a great attachment choice for this gun.
    • KSG: This improves the KSG's One Hit Range to even greater levels. 
    • M1216: Yes. Use it. Please. Please Use it. Are you using it yet? WHAT ARE YOU WAITING FOR!!!
  • Lvl. 4: Fast Mag- The Fast Mag makes you reload magazine shotguns faster, and makes the pump-action shotguns reload the gun 2 shells at a time.
    • R870: A good attachment for those who don't reload constantly, but if you reload in between kills, there are better attachments out there.
    • S12: It's a great attachment to mitigate it's slow reload. A good choice as an attachment.
    • KSG: If you don't reload between kills, then this might be of use, if you do reload, then its not really that useful.
    • M1216: An increased reload time on this gun is definately appreciated.
  • Lvl. 5: Laser Sight- The Laser Sight improves your Hip-Fire Accuracy. 
    • R870: This attachment is less useful with shotguns, since aiming down the sights is more accurate to begin with, but this attachment can make an excellent failsafe if you are caught off guard by an enemy in close range.
    • S12: Can be good if you get caught in a really close quarters fight by suprise.
    • KSG: You shouldn't hip fire with this weapon, so maybe it won't be the greatest idea.
    • M1216: If you get taken by suprise, it can definately help you out
  • Lvl. 6: Adjustable Stock- The Adjustable Stock makes you walk faster while ADS. 
    • R870: A rather useful attachment for people who like to pre-aim while turning corners, or while in heated areas, but the effect is rather miniscule on shotguns, so I wouldnt suggest using it.
    • S12: Can be useful, but not monumentally useful.
    • KSG: Can be useful, considering you will be aiming alot, but again, it has a rather miniscule effect on shotguns, so i wouldnt suggest it.
    • M1216: Not really necessary, to be honest.
  • Lvl. 7: Suppressor- The Supressor lowers range, but in exchange allows you to stay silent on the Mini-Map, and makes the weapon give off less muzzle flare. 
    • R870: Can be useful for staying off the mini map, but won't be the greatest for this weapon. I definately also don't suggest this for getting one shots.
    • S12: You'll mostly lose your mid-range ability, but staying off the Mini-Map is always a good thing.
    • KSG: At the cost of some of it's already excellent range,  you can stay off the radar less and get one hits at decent ranges for a shotgun, turning this weapon into an effective stealth weapon.
    • M1216: Reduces the range to pretty low levels, I wouldn't recommend it.
  • Lvl. 8: Extended Clip- The Extended Clip increases your Magazine Size.
    • R870:  Can be useful for prolonged engagements without reloading, but with 8 rounds to start off, if you reload between kills it's not really necessary.
    • S12: Can be useful at putting more rounds down range
    • KSG: Is 14 rounds on a pump-action not enough for you? Gawsh, so greedy...
    • M1216: You get an extra rotation of the magazine, which is rather useful in certain situations.
  • Lvl. 9: Quickdraw Handle- The Quickdraw Handle helps you ADS faster.
    • R870:  If you ADS before each shot this can be a very useful attachment, as aiming faster will make you shoot faster. If you don't aim before you shoot, this attachment isn't as useful.
    • S12: If you want to take someone down quicker at range, go for it. 
    • KSG: Since you will be aiming alot, this attachment can be a great choice to be ready quicker.
    • M1216: Can be useful if you aim.
  • Lvl. 10: Millimeter Scanner- The Milimeter Scanner picks up enemies through walls and can alert you to enemies inside buildings. 
    • R870: Can be useful in certain situations, but i would not suggest you use it on this weapon.
    • S12: Considering you will be aiming more, it can be useful at detecting enemies, just don't plan to be getting kills through walls.
    • KSG: This attachment can be pretty useful, considering you will most likely aim with this shotgun more than any other shotgun. I don't know how well you can get kills through walls with it though.
    • M1216: It's not terribly useful on this shotgun.

Secondaries

Secondaries are just as valuable an asset to a shotgunners arsenal than his shotgun itself. A good pistol can bridge the mid range gap and bring you out of an unflankable situation with most of your limbs in tact. A well placed rocket launcher shot can save your life when pinned down by a long ranged assailant, such as a sniper or a light machine gunner. Even the specials, if used right, can be a versatile and valuable asset to your arsenal, and help you prolong your life.

Pistols

Perhaps the most common tools for a Shotgunner, the pistols offer up a lightweight, yet powerful mid-range weapon that can be switched to on the fly. Whether you're pinned down by a medium range opponent, or had your shells run dry while enemies were left breathing, a few pistol rounds might be all you need to get out of a sticky situation.

Five seveN: The Five seveN is a good medium range pistol. With a good firecap, great accuracy, large magazine, and less sudden range drop, this pistol can make a great compliment for shotguns, so long as you have decent enough aim, and a decent enough trigger finger.

Tac-45: The Tac.45 is an excellent short-mid range pistol. While it has a slower rate of fire, lower magazine, and slightly more recoil than the Five seveN, it is in no way inferior to the Five seveN. The Tac.45 has over 4x the amount of two hit kill range than the Five seveN, meaning your alot more likely to score two hit kills with this than the Five seveN. This gun is a great close range fast-swapping weapon, and would make a great compliment for the KSG in close range if you miss the slug.

B23R: The B23R's burst power, combined with low time between bursts make his a very versatile pistol for both close and far range. It can be fired slower at range for good long shots to remove snipers that have you pinned down, and fired faster for enemies that catch you on a shotgun reload. Just be wary of the slight recoil at ranges, and the moderately slow reload time, but if utilized correctly, this sidearm can be your shotguns best friend.

Executioner: Would you like a shotgun with your shotgun sir? I guess it could go good with something like the S12 if it runs dry in close quarters but it's small capacity, slow reload, and low-no damage at ranges make pistols like the Tac. 45 way more effective than it at the ranges the Executioner was meant for, with the added effect of the Tac being more versatile over ranges. In short, dont use this for shotguns, as there are better pistols available.

KAP-40: The KAP-40's high rate of fire and moderately low recoil make this pistol a great companion for the slower firing shotguns, if you can deal with the constant reloading due to the  low magazine size. With Long Barrel this weapon is comparable to a SMG as a secondary, but you lack the large magazine that SMGs tend to have.

Launchers

Often looked down upon for the lower mobility while held and slow switch time, this weapon class usually tends go unused to shotgunners. But in the right hands anythings deadly, and the launchers are no exception to this. With a little bit of skill and luck, these can give you the mid-long range advantage without sacrificing too much pick 10 points.

SMAW:Arguably the deadliest launcher to a shotgunner, the SMAW can take out a sniper nest with deadly efficiency. At the cost of some mobility while held and a slow switch time, you get a semi accurate rocket that can be used to get rid of mid range enemies that are aware of your position, or even groups of enemies if your lucky.

FHJ-18AA: The FHJ-18AA isn't the greatest launcher for a shotgunner to use, as it doesn't compliment the shotgun in any way. I mean, it can definately be useful if your a die hard team player, but you will completely lose any ability to have a medium-long range weapon. You can still use it if youre a team player, but i would just suggest using something else and leaving this launcher for another class.

RPG: The RPG can definately help land for some close range kills, but anywhere outside of that is pretty much luck, as the rocket flies in any direction it feels like. I wouldn't suggest this launcher, as pistols already serve up decent close range potential, some reliable medium range, and you have less of a chance of blowing yourself up with them.

Specials

While these weapons are rather difficult to use effectively, these tools have the potential to be the most effective and versatile weapons available to a shotgunner. When used effectively, some of these can eliminate targets at even long ranges without sacrificing mobility or switch time. In the right shotgunners hands, these weapons can be the most valuable asset available.

Combat Knife The Combat Knife is definately weird to use. Your shotgun already has alot more range than that thing, why use it? Well for two reasons mainly: 1) having it equipped allows for more things on your class, like additional perks or equipment, and 2) you run longer when equipped with the Combat Knife. So if you want to traverse the map faster than anyone, switch to the knife. Just have fast hands on so you're less likely to get destroyed if you run into someone out of knifing range, but not far away enough for shotguns.

Crossbow: The Crossbow is perhaps the most long ranged secondary available for use. With it's compatibility with an ACOG scope, A Dual Band Scope, and even a Variable Zoom, this will definately help the range factor of shotguns out quite a bit. The only issue with this, is that it's really difficult to land arrows at range due to the low blast radius and the arrow drop. Pretty much the only way to take someone out with this weapon is to get either a direct impact with the arrow, or bombard them with arrows. It takes some skill to master, but if used efficiently, you can negate one of the major downsides of running a shotgun.

Ballistic Knife: The Ballistic Knife is kind of like what would happen if you took the range and drop of the Crossbow, and combined it with the look and feel of the Combat Knife. Like the Crossbow, The Ballistic Knife is also capable of getting one hits at long range, the only problem is that it lacks the optics and the explosives that the crossbow has. It also has the close range knife potential of the Combat Knife, making this a versatile, yet difficult tool. Mastering this complex tool can lead it to be a invaluable secondary for a shotgunners arsenal.

Equipment

A shotgunners equipment can be invaluable to a shotgunners playstyle. Use a lethal to dislodge an enemy that have you pinned down from far away. Tacticals can do a variety of things, such as slowing down an enemy, making an enemy an easy kill, make it easier to stay in an area that you have a tactical advantage, turning your enemys explosives on them, using them as an escape tool for when your not in a comfortable range, and much more.

Lethal

Frag Grenade: Frag Grenades can make for an excellent ranged grenade. However, its slow takeout time, the inability to put it back in your inventory, and cook time make this grenade rather situational. This grenade cannot be pulled out on the fly to get someone behind a corner very easily, but this grenade can be excellent to help kill a sniper that has you pinned behind a barrier at mid-long range. This grenade can help you at longer ranged encounters, but you need time in order to use this to its full potential. If given a little time to prepare, this grenade can be very versatile, and can cover alot of ranges.

Semtex: Semtex Grenades make an excellent medium range grenade. Compared to the Frag Grenade, at the cost of some damage, range, and blast radius, you can pull it out and put it away on the fly, and you can toss it rather quickly. This is an excellent grenade for a shotgunner, as its quick timing can sometimes make up for its lower effectiveness compared to the slower Frag Grenade.

Combat Axe: Combat Axes are really fun to use when shotgunning, as they are one hit kills and can be tossed out really quickly, but they are really difficult to use at ranges. If you are good with combat axes they can be a very versatile lethal that can be picked up and used multiple times without scavenger. If you are really good at using combat axes, then by all means go right ahead and use them, but they arent for everyone.

Bouncing Betty: Bouncing Betties can be a good tool for baiting, as you can toss it by a corner after you turn the corner, and forget it so they get blown up as they turn the corner. But other than that, these are not the most useful lethals for shotgunners to use. There are better lethals to use.

C4: C4 is a very versatile close-medium range lethal, and can even be a long range lethal if given the time to prepare. This is the only lethal that can be used as both a Claymore and a Grenade. With some knowledge a C4 can be tossed out in a spot, such as a door or an objective point, and activated with just a click of the clackers, blowing the enemy up. However, it is remotely detonated and wont activate with the enemys motion like the claymore, so you must know the enemy is there before you click the clackers. 

Also by Doubletapping X on the Xbox, you can blow the C4 up without even taking out the clackers, making this weapon useable as a slightly more controllable mid-range grenade. Overall extremely versatile, with the ability to use it as a makeshift claymore, and even a short range grenade.

Claymore: Claymores are similar to Bouncing Betties, but must be placed instead of thrown. Like the Betty, claymores can also be a good tool for baiting if you use it like a betty. Like the betties, these are not the most useful lethals for shotgunners to use. There are better lethals to use.

Tactical

Concussion Grenade: Concussions are extremely useful, as they slow down the persons movement speed, making for easy kills and making it easier to catch up to quick enemies that unaware of you being behind them.

Smoke Grenade: Smoke grenades can be useful for getting out of sticky situations, such as being pinned down by a sniper. You can dissapear like a ninja in a puff of smoke. The only downsides are that it has no stunning effect (it only impairs sight), and that it cant be done on the fly, you have to wait a few seconds after throwing it for it to get smokey.

Sensor Grenade: Sensor grenades are useful for finding the exact position where enemies are. Toss one on an objective, and there will be no suprises of where the enemy is situated. While this can be useful for many situations, I would suggest using more useful and versatile tactical equipment, such as Concussions or Flashbangs.

EMP Grenade: EMP Grenades are very useful for objective gameplay. Throw one into a hardpoint for some likely equipment destroys and a few enemies losing any electronics they had on them for a while, like red dots, Millimeter Scanners, etc. However, these dont have the stun value of Concussions or Flashbangs, so dont try to immediately run in and shoot everybody as if there stunned, as they are only really losing out on a sight and a HUD.

Shock Charge: Shock Charges should be used similarly to Claymores or Bouncing Betties. They are really good for baiting. But unlike the Claymore/Bouncing Betties, these can also act as stun grenades as you can toss them into an enemy area and stun people with them. However, the fact that you have to rely on the enemy walking into them, and the effect only really lasts for a second or two, makes Concussions/Flashbangs better for the playstyle.

Black Hat PDA: Black Hats can be useful as they are a very versatile tool. They are useful for taking out equipment, and care packages. However these dont help much outside of that and dont benefit the shotgunners role in any way. Therefore, id suggest using another tactical, such as Flashbangs or Concussions, rather than this.

Flashbang: Flashbangs are similar to concussions, except they dont slow down the enemy as much, but they do disorient them greatly. You lose your chance of catching up to an enemy, but this can be arguably better than a concussion, as they are disoriented for slightly longer.

Trophy System: Trophy systems are good for objective play. Taking a domination flag? Just toss one down and youre protected from those pesky grenades. These can be excellent for an objectives class. However, like the Black Hat PDA, these dont benefit the shotgunners role in any way. Therefore, id suggest switching this out for another tactical, such as Flashbangs or Concussions, rather than this tactical.

Tactical Insertion: Tactical Insertions are alot better than you think with this weapon class. However, positioning is key. Situating this in the middle of an open field would obviously not be the greatest for a shotgunner. Situating this in a building will constantly give you a range advantage whenever you spawn, and make it easier to kill. If theres an objective in a building (ex. Hardpoint B, C, D on Hijacked) putting it in an inconspicuous place (for B&D, 2nd floor above the hardpoint, for C in a corner somewhere in the basement in the hardpoint) can net you plenty of kills in a short amount of time. Just be careful, if they are too close to your tactical insert, cancel it before you get spawnkilled.

Perks

Perk 1

Lightweight: Lightweight makes you run faster, which will overall help you get into one hit kill range faster. This Perk is a great compliment to the shotgun playstyle .

Blind Eye: Blind Eye makes you immune to AI controlled Scorestreaks. Probably isn't the best choice for shotguns, to be honest.

Hardline: Hardline helps you get Scorestreaks faster. A good perk, but it doesn't help out shotguns directly, so you should probably skip over this perk.

Flak Jacket: Flak Jacket protects you against explosive damage. Can be useful if you are constantly running into bouncing betties, shock charges, etc. but since it doesn't really  compliment the shotguns directly, there are better perks to use.

Ghost: Ghost keeps you invisible on the enemy radar, so long as you are moving. This Perk can go rather well with shotguns considering you will me moving almost constantly with them, but should probably be passed up for other perks that will better compliment the shotguns playstyle.

Perk 2

Toughness: Toughness makes you flinch less when shot. Can be very crucial when it comes to winning firefights against other close range weapons, like SMGs.

Fast Hands: Fast Hands make you swap weapons faster and use equipment faster. This perk can be invaluable for getting out of sticky situations that require a player to be stunned, or fast swapped.

Cold Blooded:Cold Blooded makes you immune to attachments that help players locate you easier, as well as showing up on player controlled Scorestreaks. Definately can be useful, but probably isn't the best choice for shotguns, unless you're trying to stay out of the spotlight.

Hard Wired: Hard Wired makes you immune to Counter-UAVs and EMPs. Can be useful in some situations, but doesnt really do anything to help shotguns directly.

Scavenger: Scavenger makes enemy you kill drop ammo and equipment to replenish your own supply. It can be useful for getting back equipment, but considering that most shotguns have plenty of spare ammo, it doesn't make this perk very useful for anything else.

Perk 3

Dexterity: Dexterity let's you ready your weapon faster after sprinting, and let's you mantle objects faster. Since you will be running constantly and moving around everywhere quickly is essential, this perk can be quite invaluable to a shotgunner. The faster ready times will also give you even more of an edge in close range encounters, making this perk almost essential.

Extreme Conditioning: Extreme Conditioning makes you sprint for longer. Since movement is essential, that makes this perk rather essential as well.

Engineer: Engineer makes it easier to see enemy explosives. This can be good to use because alot of people use them, and since you will be running around alot and won't always notice them, it can help. However, it's not severely beneficial to a shotgunner, also you can sometimes outrun their explosive radius if your fast enough, so speed perks are probably better choices.

Tactical Mask: Tactical Mask makes you more immune to flashes, stuns, and shock charges. Similar to engineer, it doesn't really benefit the shotgunner role, but it can be useful to avoid running into shock charges or your own stuns if you throw them too close

Dead Silence: Dead Silence make your footsteps silent. This perk can be really useful when facing players who use Turtle Beaches, but other than that it's an okay perk to use, but other perks like Extreme Conditioning and Dexterity will be more beneficial than this perk.

Awareness: Awareness makes enemies easier to hear. If you use turtle beaches, this perk can be invaluable. If not, it's not terribly useful for shotguns.

Classes

Now that we have all of that knowledge of what will help enhance a shotguns capabilities, here's a few classes that should compliment each shotgun rather well. The classes specific to a certain shotgun are more fun and refreshing classes showing off the shotguns versatilities. All of them are pretty interesting and fun.

Basic Shotgun Builds

One Shell to Hell

  • Shotgun of Choice
    • Long Barrel
    • Laser Sight/Other
  • Pistol of Choice
    • Long Barrel
      • Lightweight
      • Dexterity 
      • Extreme Conditioning
    • Concussion Grenade
        • Perk 3 Greed
      • 10/10 Points
  • Description: A Class optimized for getting in close for those One Hit kills. The perks ensure you get in close and be ready to fight as soon as possible. The attachments make it alot easier to one hit, and the concussion grenade will slow down fast enemies or make it easier to kill enemies aware of your position.

Escape Artist

  • Shotgun of Choice
    • Long Barrel
    • Laser Sight/Other
  • Pistol of Choice
    • Long Barrel
      • Lightweight
      • Fast Hands
      • Extreme Conditioning
    • Concussion Grenade
    • Concussion Grenade
      • 10/10 Points
  • Description: A class optimized for getting out of sticky situations easier. You will sacrifice the ability to ADS and Climb faster, but you add add an extra concussion and a quicker way to throw them. This will also allow you to swap to your pistol even faster, just in case you run out of ammo in your mag or are faced with a longer ranged assailant.

Remington 870 MCS

Grim Reaper

  • Remington 870 MCS
    • Long Barrel
    • Laser Sight
  • Tac-45
    • Long Barrel
      • Lightweight
      • Dexterity 
      • Extreme Conditioning
    • C4
        • Perk 3 Greed
      • 10/10 Points
  • Description: My personal favorite shotgun class customized for my playstyle. This is one of the few classes that I have had the potential to absolutely demolish with, no matter how bad of a day I've been having on Call of Duty. This is my ideal shotgun class.

Juggernaut

  • Remington 870 MCS
    • Long Barrel
  • SMAW
      • Flak Jacket
      • Lightweight
      • Toughness
      • Tactical Mask
    • C4
    • Concussion Grenade
        • Perk 1 Greed
      • 10/10 Points
  • Description: "Do you know who I am? I'm the Juggernaut, Bitch!!" Sacrifice some mobility to be completely unfazed by anthing you or your enemies throw at you. Explosives, Stuns, and even bullets will not faze you (except if you get hit by a gratuitous amount of either explosives of bullets, then you will be quite fazed XD)

Saiga 12

Minuteman

  • S12
    • Long Barrel
    • Quickdraw
    • Adjustable Stock
  • Five-seveN
      • Lightweight
      • Dexterity 
      • Extreme Conditioning
        • Perk 3 Greed
        • Primary Gunfighter
      • 10/10 Points
  • Description: Hehehe, you're a minuteman *snicker*. Not in that sense silly goose, get your head out of the gutter. No but seriously with this class, it will be alot quicker to move, aim, kill, and repeat. You will have to deal with the kinda slow reload of the S12, but think of it this way, the actual minutemen of the colonial times would have had it alot worse off when it comes to reloading and accuracy.

Breach And Clear

  • S12
    • Extended Mag
    • Millimeter Scanner
  • Crossbow
    • Tri-bolt
      • Flak Jacket
      • Scavenger
      • Engineer
    • C4
    • Smoke Grenade
      • 10/10 Points
  • Description: You now have the same duties as a grizzly bear, and that is to eliminate all campers. See them through the walls, throw some smoke for cover and evict them form their spot with some shotgun pellets, or a good C4 Charge. Then feast off the campers rage and scavenger packs, then rinse and repeat when needed. This class is also excellent at getting people on objectives as you have many options to confuse and infuriate the capper.

KSG-12

Big Game Hunter

  • KSG 
    • Long Barrel
    • Reflex Sight w/ predator (c wat I did thar)
  • Crossbow
    • Variable Zoom/ACOG
      • Lightweight 
      • Scavenger
      • Awareness
    • Claymore
    • Shock Charge
      • 10/10 Points
  • Description: Since slugs are excellent for hunting Big Game, and humans are pretty big creatures, why not hunt them? You're the Hunter, they are the Prey. Set traps for them and take them out from close/medium range with your KSG, or at medium/long range with the Crossbow. Awareness will help you track your prey, lightweight will help you catch up to them, and Scavenger will give you more traps to lay down, and more arrows to fire.

Assailant of the Mist

  • KSG
    • Suppressor
    • Millimeter Scanner
  • Knife
      • Lightweight
      • Ghost
      • Scavenger
      • Dead Silence
  • Combat Axe
  • Smoke Grenade
        • Perk 1 Greed
      • 10/10 Points
  • Description: Put down your enemies, before they even know what hit em. Ghost and dead silence will make you harder to track, and the Supressor on the KSG will take out most enemies rather quickly from close-medium range without them knowing what hit them. Throw smoke down on enemies taking objectives and use your KSGs Millimeter Scanner see them through it. Take them out silently, and leave them confused until they watch the killcam.

M1216

Light Em' Up

  • M1216
    • Long Barrel
    • Laser Sight
    • Extended Mag
  • KAP-40
    • Dual Wield
      • Lightweight
      • Dexterity
    • Concussion Grenade
        • Primary Gunfighter
      • 10/10 Points
  • Description: Who needs fire to be accurate when you got alot of it? With this class you can just simply... Aghh what's the term for it. Unload and Worship? Something along the lines of that... Just keep firing and they'll go down eventually. In the words of A Change of Pace, "Take 18 steps now turn and draw, I shoot from the hip and watch you fall".

Mow em' Down

  • M1216
    • Long Barrel
    • Fast Mag
  • B23R
      • Lightweight
      • Dexterity 
      • Extreme Conditioning
    • Concussion Grenade
    • Concussion Grenade
        • Perk 3 Greed
      • 10/10 Points
  • Description: This is all about killing fast. Mow down enemies in close range with ease and precision before they even knew what hit em'. Throw down a concussion or two disable them long enough for your shotgun to disable them permanently.


Conclusion

I really hope I helped people learn how to use shotguns better. I know alot of you probably already know how to use shotguns, but I figured you learn something new from everyone, so even if I introduced you to a new attachment to try and use for a certain shotgun, I would have done my job. I hope you all took the time to use this, as it took me almost a week to write (damn you finals!!!), and a month to gather information and tips via playing the game.

If I made a mistake  (I tried to put in as much info as possible, and I didn't have alot of time to spellcheck and stuff) please tell me in a comment below. Also if you have any tips that I forgot, or some interesting/cool class ideas that I never thought of, feel free to tell me in the comments section below. I'll credit the user if he has an account (sorry anons, I'd rather not use IP addreses.) and hey, you can even teach me something new. Thank you all for reading and remember, Diamond can be yours if you go to Jared's Work for it. If I can do it, so can you.

Necro's Weapon Guides

MTAR Menu Icon BOII
Vector K10 Menu Icon BOII
Mk 48 Menu Icon BOII
R-870 MCS Menu Icon BOII
Assault Rifles (2/9) Sub-Machine Guns (1/6) Light Machine Guns (1/4) Shotguns (4/4)
DSR 50 menu icon BOII
Tac-45 Menu Icon BOII
RPG Menu Icon BOII
Ballistic Knife Create-a-Class BOII
Sniper Rifles (3/4) Pistols (0/5) Launchers (0/3) Specials (0/4)
Everytime I earn Diamond Camo on a gun class, I plan on writing a guide similar to this. Most of these are not made, only those whose class name are linked are completed. The number I have gotten gold are listed on the side.

Credits

Thanks to:
Treyarch, for making this game
Sythmic.com for some information requiring accurate weapon statistics
Youtube Commentators for giving me some tiny tips and tricks here and there, and a good amount of them actually helped me write this

Thanks to:

  • Antibrony for supplying some new insight on certain tactics and perks, as well as inspiring the Equipment Section.
  • MLG for informing me that launchers dont actually slow you down unless equipped. I was not aware of that.
  • Kylet for making me aware of how miniscule the adjustable stock increases your speed while ADS.
.Necromancer115M1014 Pickup CoD4  14:29, December 18, 2012 (UTC)

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