Ghost Recon Wildlands: Mastering the Surgeon and Toxic Ghost War classes
The Special Operations 2 expansion for Ghost Recon Wildlands is now live, bringing with it a new Ghost Mode PvE experience, a new Rainbow Six Siege crossover event, and, naturally, several new features for the game’s Ghost War PvP mode. You can read our general impressions of Special Operations 2’s major highlights, but in this guide we’ll be delving a little deeper into two of the expansion’s more interesting additions; the new Surgeon and Toxic Ghost War classes.
As part of the expansion’s Rainbow Six Siege event, PvE players can participate in a new story mission involving the Siege operators Twitch, Valkyrie, and Caveira. The new Surgeon and Toxic Ghost War classes continue the Rainbow Six theme by being loosely based off of fellow Siege operators Doc and Smoke respectively. The Surgeon is a new Assault class that allows players to balance offensive capabilities with a handy auxiliary function. The Toxic, meanwhile, is a new Support class that gives drone fans an interesting new tool that can punish unaware enemy players, and put pressure on enemy teams who rely too heavily on camping a single position.
Much like Rainbow Six Siege’s Doc, the Surgeon can utilize a special stim pistol gadget along with their usual firearm loadout. When equipped, the stim pistol allows the Surgeon to heal, and even revive teammates from a distance, affording skilled Surgeon players the opportunity to make some truly clutch plays when it matters most.
Right off the bat, the Surgeon’s addition to the Ghost War roster is important because it lets players access a dedicated healing class a lot earlier than they normally could. The only other healing class in Ghost War is the Medic, a class that can’t be unlocked until a player reaches rank 25. Since the Surgeon is also an Assault class, it has a little more health and offensive power than the Medic, making it a solid choice for newer players, or players who want to try their hand at playing the combat healer role without sacrificing survivability.
As for the stim pistol, it’s surprisingly easy to use, though much like other Ghost War gadgets, it does have limitations. The pistol only fires when you’ve lined up your sights on a friendly player in need of aid (your target will glow blue when this happens) so there’s no need to worry about missing and wasting shots. In total, the stim pistol has five shots, but you can’t replenish shots by visiting an ammo box.
The exact amount of health granted from a stim pistol shot varies depending on your target’s total class health, but in most cases, a single shot will replenish about one third of a non-Assault class’s health. Lastly, the stim pistol doesn’t cancel bleed effects, but its 61-meter effective range means that you can heal and revive teammates from quite a ways off if you have a steady aiming hand.
One last note: you cannot heal yourself with your own stim pistol while playing as the Surgeon, so keep that in mind.
In Rainbow Six Siege, the operator Smoke can deploy charges that emit a damaging gas when manually triggered. The Toxic’s gas drone doesn’t function in exactly the same manner, but similar to Smoke’s charges, it allows Toxic players to harass and pressure enemy combatants from afar.
As is the case with Ghost War’s other drone-piloting classes (the Scout, Guerrilla, Medic, etc.), the Toxic’s aerial drone can come in handy even without its gas-deployment function. Drones are a vital tool that can spot enemy players from above, marking their position for your entire team and also revealing which class they are playing. The Drone Pilot perk and drone-focused Support abilities like Thermal Vision can increase the Toxic drone’s usefulness even more, making the Toxic a great pick for players who want to aid their team without relying solely on their shooting skills.
When deployed, the Toxic’s gas drone has six seconds of stealth, and its maneuverability and HP levels are the same as the Artillery class’s mortar drone. The Toxic’s drone can fire a gas charge that covers a 50-meter area, and any players caught in the gas (including friendly players) are slowly damaged over time. Most classes will receive enough damage to be downed if they remain in the gas for its entire duration, though the gas will only drain about half the HP of a Tank player, and Predator players can survive the gas by using their battle rage ability. If a player is under the effects of adrenaline rush, they’ll be able to survive the gas as well.
There’s no limit to the number of gas charges the Toxic’s drone can fire, though there’s a two-minute cooldown that must elapse between firings (the drone itself only has a one-minute cooldown). The drone’s gas also isn’t opaque like the smoke fired from the Guerrilla’s drone, so it sadly can’t be used to block enemy sightlines.
However, the gas is very useful for denying enemies access to map objectives, because damage from the gas will interrupt recon tower/uplink station activations. Gas damage will also cause enemy players to drop a hostage, but you have to be careful that the gas doesn’t kill the hostage in the process (a single gas charge won’t kill a hostage who’s at full health).
Also, in case you were wondering, that gas mask the Toxic wears doesn’t make them immune to either their own gas, or gas deployed by an enemy Toxic player (this is worth mentioning since, in Siege, Smoke players are immune to their own gas charges.)