Weapons And Enemies
When you're especially pressed for ammo, or just want to get in your opponent's faces, there's nothing quite like a good melee attack. When wielding your normal weapons (i.e. the blaster rifle, or the sniper or anti-armor attachments), your melee attack will take the form of a quick fist to your enemy, with the damage boosted by the presence of an extending blade on your hand. This is going to be instantly lethal to most grunt-level enemies, such as battle droids, Trando mercs and slavers, or Geonosian soldiers, but will only do minor damage to most of the tougher enemies in the game. If you're using a pick-up weapon that dropped from an enemy, than the melee attack animation will differ, and will sometimes be more or less powerful than the sword-fist one.
Melee attacks are great to use on the PC version of the game, but if you're going into battle on the Xbox, they're a bit more unwieldy, thanks to the fact that you can't aim and use them at the same time (due to the fact that they'll both require your thumb).
DC-15s Sidearm Blaster
The sidearm pistol, as in most FPS games, is going to be rarely used in Republic Commando. Although it has a self-charging energy core for an essentially infinite supply of ammo, it recharges at a slower rate than you can fire it at, meaning that you can easily run through its entire charge in a couple of second's worth of sustained shooting, after which you'll have to wait for it to recharge before you can use it again. If you can restrain yourself to firing once a second or so, then you can keep up such a pace indefinitely, but the sidearm is never going to match the damage output of your blaster rifle or other weapons. One thing it is good for, though, is conserving ammo when you have to fire at an explodable obstacle or an explosive device next to an enemy, although you won't normally run so low on ammo for your other weapons that you'll be forced to use the sidearm for such tasks.
DC-17m Blaster Rifle
Each Republic clone trooper becomes intimately familiar with the workings of his blaster rifle during the course of their many long campaigns against the Separatists, and commandos are no exception. Their DC-17m weapon is modelled on the same weapon that normal infantry use, but has been upgraded with modular capabilities, allowing the commandos to use sniper and anti-armor attachments as the situation dictates.
At its most basic, though, the regular blaster rifle is a versatile weapon for any circumstance. Equally effective against droids and organic enemies, and coming with a large clip of sixty rounds, it'll be your weapon of choice for most of the game. It doesn't hurt that ammo clips for it are scattered liberally throughout the many missions and levels of the game, whereas ammo for the sniper and anti-armor attachments can sometimes be difficult to find. It's definitely more useful against some enemies than others - it has a difficult time broaching the armor plating on super battle droids, for instance--but with enough time, it's capable of taking down almost anything.
One thing to note about the blaster rifle is that it's markedly more accurate when you're aiming down the sights than it is while fired from the hip, so when you're firing at something that's a good distance away, hit that zoom key to tighten up your grouping.
There's not much to say about the sniper rifle. It's arguably the most lethal of the basic weapons that you'll come across in the game, thanks to the fact that it'll be a one-hit kill against most of the grunt-level foes you'll encounter. Although it can only hold five rounds in a clip, that's usually more than enough to put even tough enemies like the super battle droid on the ground. You don't want to use it against crowds, though, or against enemies that are too close, as the reload animation is longer than that for the blaster rifle, meaning that the enemies that you're fighting against will get some free shots off at you while you're attempting to jam another clip into place.
It's worth noting that the sniper attachment doesn't lose accuracy when fired while it's unzoomed; you can shoot it while unzoomed and still hit things a good distance away, especially if you wait until your crosshairs turn red to indicate that you're on target. At medium range, you can repeatedly use the sniper rifle to blast weaker targets if you're out of blaster rifle ammo, or if you're just feeling peckish. The interval between firing will usually let your enemies get close to you before you manage to take them all down, though.
The second attachment for the DC-17m that you'll find is anti-armor ordnance. Oftentimes the most deadly forces arrayed against infantry are armored enemies that are difficult if not impossible to damage with blasters; when you meet up with enemies like super battle droids, or spider droids, it's helpful to have a full load of anti-armor rounds at your side.
The most notable limitation of the anti-armor attachment is its small ammo clip; you can only hold four rounds at a time, with a short reload animation after the first two are fired. This is going to force you to be frugal with the ammo here, since you won't be finding boxes of it all over the place. In other words, you'll want to save it for enemies that really require AA shells to be killed, the most noteworthy of which are the super battle droids. SBD's can be killed by blaster fire, sure, although it takes forever. Sniper rounds can also do the job, but they also take a little while to work their magic. A single anti-armor round, however, will kill even a full-health SBD in one big boom if you land a direct hit. There is a significant amount of splash damage, as well, so if you don't manage to land your round directly on your target, you may want to follow it with some blaster fire or an EC grenade until you finish it off, rather than overkill it with another AA round.
Another tricky aspect to using the anti-armor is mastering the way that the shells arc through the air rather than flying straight ahead; this is no rocket launcher. You'll need to compensate for your distance to the target by aiming well above their heads in most instances, so a bit of practice will be required before you can land your shots accurately.