Specialists (more commonly referred to as "Specs") are a unique type of Mercenary.
"Carefully selected and raised from birth to be the ultimate combination of strength, stealth, brilliance, and skill," these soldiers are among the best of the best. As such, they have access to a number of items & weapons that ordinary players cannot use under normal circumstances.
Specialists are further divided into two individual sub-categories: Operatives and Assassins. While Operatives have a multi-purpose use on the battlefield, Assassins specialize in stealthy kills & a different approach to combat.
To further drive the point, there are some weapons unique to either class (though there are always items which are available to both). Both are equally effective on the battlefield, however. Each Specialist has a unique code name. Operatives are named after types of predators, while Assassins are named after supernatural beings.
Known Operatives include:
- Classic Viper
- Classic Scorpion
- Classic Raven
- Classic Hawk
- Classic Captain Souza
- Captain Souza
Known Assassins include:
Operatives are free to equip themselves with anything in the Weapons category. They can also use any Specialist Items, which can be expanded temporarily by buying a Specialist 2 Slot License. The Body category is completely to off-limit---so one cannot wear a backpack or any other gear (though a Specialist Backpack License can be used as a replacement).
Assassins have even more limitations. Besides the absence of any gear items, they also cannot use a large number of weapons, which include every primary category of weaponry (excluding Assault Rifles & Submachine Guns).
After an unknown patch, Assassins could be bought using GP and NX.
Impact on the Game
The introduction of Specialists sparked widespread criticism as well as praise. Many players were overall disappointed that these characters had accessed to special weapons that they themselves could not use, even if they were NX-users themselves.
A few months into the game after their introduction, the Specialist had become a greatly criticized example of the imbalance between GP and NX users. Specialists were considered significantly detrimental to game balancing, with their exclusive access to a unique arsenal of weapons, items and equipment combinations.
Prior to the 2017 Combat Arms Reboot, all Specialists available for purchase in the in-game shop have been removed until further noticed by Nexon to contribute to the establishing of a more 'competitive' gaming environment. Players already equipped with Specialists and their equipment for permanent prior to the update are allowed to retain them. However, Specialists (both classic and modern versions) can still be indirectly bought by using Gear Boxes and relying on chance on the Reloaded server, and they can even be received for PERM. Specialists can also be achieved by using Bubba's Secret Stash.
Since the reboot, players no longer need to be a Specialist in order to use specialist weapons, greatly undermining their usefulness. Because of this, Specialist have rebalanced stats in order for them to still have some impact.
Despite The Classic server existing, Operatives can only be bought using GC until further notice. They still can be achieved through Ghost Hi-sec cases.
- Every Specialist has been leaked before their released so far.
- As of the New Blood update, one can buy a Specialist starting at SSG 1.
- Captain Souza is the first specialist not to be named after an animal of prey or have the word "Codename" in front of the name.
- As of the March 2013 Patch , Nexon has released a game option named "Duty Roster" (one will need the Battle Master item in order to use this option). This prevents the usage of Specalists in certain game modes. However it does not prevent the usage of Specalists in Quarantine Regen, therefore making it less useful (due to the fact that Specialists are most commonly used with Quarantine Regen.)
- Each pair of Specialists have similarities in the habitats of the creatures used for their codenames. Scorpions and Vipers both commonly inhabit a desert area, and Ravens and Hawks are both bird species.