All Special Enemies in Warhammer 40K: Darktide and How to Defeat Them (2024)

Ready to dive into the depths of Warhammer 40K: Darktide? Get ready – you’ll be coming up against some powerful and unique enemies that lurk throughout your journey. Special enemies have special abilities and tactics, so it’s important to know what makes them different before going into battle. In this blog post, we’ll cover all the types of special enemies in Darktide and give tips on how to take them down. Let’s get ready for an intense fight!

The Difference Between Special and Elite Enemies in Darktide

Elite and Special enemies have wildly different functions in combat. Primarily, Elites are there to be the most dangerous presence on the battlefield; they often require immediate attention due to their immense melee power which can quickly break your formation apart. As expected, they tend to be tougher than standard units – whether it is through armor such as found with Scab Maulers or Scab Gunners, or unarmored but powerful fighters like Dreg Ragers.

Apart from the Pox Hound and Mutant, special enemies are fond of taking cover or engaging in mid-ranged combat to fortify nearby melee units. They can separate your team or act as ranged assailants if not taken out quickly! Specials have HP comparable to the Pox Hound or Tox Flamer but yield devastating damage, so they must be prioritized at all times during battle.

Players can quickly alert their team of approaching adversaries through pings. The Specials and Elites in Darktide have distinctive voice lines or callouts, providing players with a helpful warning before they clash against them.

While this guide will cover how to deal with special enemies, we’ve also prepared a companion article that will help you deal with all elite enemies in Darktide.

All Special Enemies in Darktide

1. Shotgunner

All Special Enemies in Warhammer 40K: Darktide and How to Defeat Them (1)
  • Range: Short/Melee
  • Weapon: Shotgun/Mace
  • Warning: None
  • Armor: Unarmored or Armored

The Shotgunner is one of the more common Specialist units you will encounter in Darktide. Shotgunners are one step up from the common ranged Scab and Dregs, sporting a little more HP and flak armor.

These special enemies in Darktide love to fight from mid-ranged, contently peppering you with highly volatile shotgun blasts or switching to a melee weapon if their target gets too close.

Shotgunners can be identified from the three impaled skulls they wear on their backs, which makes them stick out amongst their squads. They are relatively weak and easy to deal with once they equip their melee weapon, but if you stay just out of reach, their shotgun blasts will easily shred through your Toughness in Darktide and stagger you backward.

Shotgunners can be quickly dealt with by landing a few headshots before they get close, popping their heads with a single Brain Burst, or rushing them before they can rack a shell into the chamber. These enemies are only dangerous if you don’t prioritize them initially, so pick them off before the Pox Walkers crowd around you.

2. Gunners

All Special Enemies in Warhammer 40K: Darktide and How to Defeat Them (2)
  • Range: Medium/Long
  • Weapon: Chaingun
  • Warning: None
  • Armor: Unarmored or Armored

Gunners can spawn as Scabs or Dregs, just like Shotgunners. The main difference between Dregs and Scabs is Scabs are equipped with full armor, but Dreg’s still have flak armor. Both types of Gunners wield a chain gun that deals heavy damage over a long distance.

At max range, their shots will quickly suppress your team, or at medium range, their barrage of bullets will melt your HP and suppress you to nearly being stunlocked out in the open.

Gunner special enemies in Darktide roam in patrols and typically come in groups. However, they are easier to eliminate and engage if you can preemptively close the distance or snipe them before they scatter and get into cover. Bull Rush or a Stun grenade is a great way to quickly stop them from spreading out. Gunners are also easy to eliminate if you get into melee or get a well-placed headshot, but Dreg Gunners will require more damage to kill because of their armor.

3. Scab Sniper

All Special Enemies in Warhammer 40K: Darktide and How to Defeat Them (3)
  • Range: Long
  • Weapon: Sniper
  • Warning: Red Laser / Scope Flare
  • Armor: Unarmored

The Scab Sniper is one of the deadliest ranged enemies in Darktide. A Scab Sniper, their role is to deal incredible amounts of burst damage and possibly eliminate one of your teammates with a single shot.

Snipers can be spotted by the long red laser sight and their scope flashing before they take a shot. If you time the flash with your dodge, you can avoid the bullet entirely, but dodging too early might result in your death.

The special enemies in Darktide are pretty fragile and will die in a few melee hits or headshots. A Psyker can eliminate a Scab Sniper with one Brain Burst, or a Veteran build with a Lasgun can eliminate them quickly.

If you approach a Sniper while they aren’t lining up a shot, they will immediately begin to retreat to a better position, so it’s best to stay in cover or catch them while they are moving. If you aren’t adequately equipped to deal with a Scab Sniper, be sure to ping them to alert your teammates of their position so they can avoid getting one shot.

4. Scab Bomber

All Special Enemies in Warhammer 40K: Darktide and How to Defeat Them (4)
  • Range: Medium
  • Weapon: Grenades
  • Warning: Grenade Out
  • Armor: Flak Armor + No Helmet

The Scab Bomber is another fragile ranged unit that weaves in and out of combat, supporting other ranged units with grenades. The Scab Bomber throws incendiary grenades, which explode after a short timer, then cover the nearby area in a coating of flame for a short time. Standing in the flame will make you take constant damage, which easily breaks your Toughness.

Scab Bombers are sometimes difficult to kill because they retreat after throwing one grenade and only rush back into combat when they have another incendiary grenade prepared. Usually, they throw grenades to cut off areas, making it difficult for you to stay in cover or advance. This makes it far more challenging to take them down in melee than most ranged units, who stay in cover in comparison.

The best time to shoot at a Scab Bomber is during their warning when they stand still while throwing the grenade, and they should be easy to take down since they have minimal armor and no helmet.

5. Flamer Special Enemies in Darktide

All Special Enemies in Warhammer 40K: Darktide and How to Defeat Them (5)
  • Range: Short / Medium
  • Weapon: Flamethrower
  • Warning: Gas Clicking / Ramblings about Flame
  • Armor: Unarmored

There are two types of flames, Scab Flamers, and Pox Flamers. Both Flamers are dangerous at medium ranges since their flamethrowers can lock down small corridors or make for strong area denial.

Flamers are one of the few Specialists with multiple warnings before they engage in combat. You can hear a Falmer spawn by the clicking of the gas tanks on their backs, turning on, and then shouting about fire before they unleash their flames.

Flamers also leave a trail of flames behind after their ranged burst and will continue to chase players instead of retreating from combat or repositioning.

Their movements make them deadly whenever a situation becomes crowded but easy to eliminate since they will continuously pursue you. A ranged class can eliminate them in a few shots, and melee classes can dodge out of their flames before closing the distance.

However, if you are already caught in a Flamer’s fire trail, it’s best to retreat and let them chase you, then quickly dart toward them to shove them off balance before they attack again. Flamers can also be difficult to see because of the contrast of their bright flames against dark environments, so be sure to tag them if you’re trying to headshot them through the fire.

Related Article: The 5 Most Amazing Horde Shooter Games like Darktide

6. Poxburster

All Special Enemies in Warhammer 40K: Darktide and How to Defeat Them (7)
  • Range: Close
  • Weapon: Self-Detonation
  • Warning: Loud Ticking
  • Armor: Unarmored

The Poxburster is a Pox Walker strapped with plague-filled explosives ready to detonate. The Poxburster simply runs towards the nearest player as the ticking from its vest slowly grows louder and more frequent as they approach, exploding on contact or after dive bombing on the floor.

The blast radius from the Poxburster is large enough to hit everyone in your squad, even if the explosive zombie was chasing only one player, which can send those in a bad position off a ledge.

The Poxburster is just as fragile as a typical Pox Walker, making them prematurely explode from taking a few shots. However, their power comes from being in close quarters combat or in situations where you can’t see the Poxburster before they close the distance. If you get hit by this special enemy while playing Darktide, you will likely lose your Toughness and some of your health and be sent flying backward.

If you cannot shoot a Poxburster, you can shove them back before they make contact with you. It’s a risky move, but if you successfully push them back, you can get some space before shooting them or if they still end up detonating.

7. Darktide’s Scab Trapper Special Enemies

All Special Enemies in Warhammer 40K: Darktide and How to Defeat Them (8)
  • Range: Close
  • Weapon: Net
  • Warning: Rambling on about Capturing You
  • Armor: Flak Armor + No Helmet

The Sab Trapper is another highly recurring enemy in Darktide. After a Trapper spawns, it hunts down a specific member of your team, chasing them and ignoring everyone else.

Once they approach their target, they will fire their net gun, and if it hits their target, the player is trapped and incapacitated. Afterward, the Trapper pulls them closer and stands still while reloading their weapon, then begins to chase another player,

If the net misses, the Trapper retreats immediately to reload before pursuing a new target. Freeing your ally from the net is significantly faster than reviving them.

While the Trapper is standing still, you can remove the net while the Trapper waits there. All of the AI in Darktide seem well coordinated, but the Trapper sometimes seems a little off. As for bringing down the Trapper, they are lightly armored and don’t wear a helmet so strike their head if they are standing still after capturing your ally or hit them as they retreat.

8. Pox Hound

  • Range: Close
  • Weapon: Pounce & Bite
  • Warning: Barking and Howling
  • Armor: Unarmored

The Pox Hound is fast, deadly, and can solo isolated players in a heartbeat. These mutant dogs are similar to Gutter Runners from Vermintide 2; they act as assassins who incapacitate one player while dealing tons of damage. Pox Hounds function similarly to Scab Trappers because they like to pursue one target, even to the point of running past others, which can make them easy kills sometimes.

All Special Enemies in Warhammer 40K: Darktide and How to Defeat Them (9)

Pox Hounds are incredibly deadly if they chase an isolated player since you can’t push them off once they pounce you. However, like Gutter Runners, you can dodge their pounce right as you start to hear the Pox Hound roar. If you cannot avoid their pounce, you will need a teammate to kill or knock the Pox Hound off you. If you avoid the ambush or the dog runs away, it will retreat before hunting a new player, just like the Trapper.

Pox Hounds have relatively low HP, and their head is easy to hit, so you can take one down with a few strikes. Psyker builds in Darktide are extra helpful for taking down Pox Hounds because no matter how much the Pox Hound dodges around, you can still Brain Burst them. If you don’t have a Psyker, you can easily stagger the Pox Hound to keep it locked in a corner to easily land hits.

9. Mutant Specialist Enemies

All Special Enemies in Warhammer 40K: Darktide and How to Defeat Them (10)
  • Range: Melee
  • Weapon: Fists
  • Warning: Loud, Non-Stop Yelling
  • Armor: Unarmored

The last Warhammer 40K: Darktide special enemy on our list is the Mutant. The Mutant is a loud and drugged-up human experiment that runs down players, tackling them into walls or slamming them into the floor.

Afterward, the Mutant tosses them in a nearly random direction before continuing to yell and charging them again to repeat the process.

The Mutant is an interesting enemy because they don’t keep you permanently pinned like the Charger from Left 4 Dead 2, but they continue to pursue you just to knock you around the room like a soccer ball.

The Charger is surprisingly tanky despite being unarmored, requiring several hits and melee attacks to bring one down. Because Mutants are unyielding enemies in Darktide, they can’t be staggered while slamming your ally into the ground, making them one of the more annoying enemies to deal with. If left unattended, a Mutant can continue to push one player out of position while slamming them into the wall, making it extremely difficult for them to fight back without help.

Like the Pox Hound, the Mutant’s charge can be dodged, but the timing is slightly different. If you dodge before the Mutant raises their hand to grab you, you can avoid their stun; if you correctly dodge them, they can slam into a wall and become dazed.

Final Thoughts on How to Defeat Every Special Enemy in Warhammer 40K: Darktide

Now that you know all about the different types of special enemies in Darktide, it’s time to put your knowledge into practice. Remember, each type has its own strengths and weaknesses, so make sure you adapt your strategy accordingly.

Let us know how you do in the comments section below – we can’t wait to hear about your triumphs (and defeats) against these powerful creatures!

For more insights, check out some of our other guides, including how to play and build the Ogryn in Warhammer 40K: Darktide. If you already familiar with each class, then you may want to take a peek at how to easily defeat a Plague Ogryn.

All Special Enemies in Warhammer 40K: Darktide and How to Defeat Them (2024)


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