Marvel's Avengers Pro Tips: Captain America

Crystal Dynamics Combat Designer Scott Walters shares some advice to help make you the ultimate Super Soldier.
By Scott Walters

Captain America is more than just a hero - he’s an icon. As the living symbol of the Avengers, he leads the team with intelligence, bravery, and compassion, having earned the respect of all around him.

Of course, it helps that he’s no slouch when it comes to combat either. Steve Rogers is a brawler, who blends fast attacks and strong strikes to form powerful combos. Armed with his signature Vibranium shield, he also has some of the strongest defensive capabilities out of all the Avengers.

Read on, and I’ll pinpoint some of his most useful skills, and share some of my personal favorite combos.

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Melee Skills

  • New York Knuckles (Light attack > Light > Light > Light > Light > Light) is a series of quick strikes that can keep an enemy locked down once you’ve opened them up. It’s easy to pull off and very effective against basic enemies like Synthoids.

  • Eagle’s Talon (while in the air, Light > Light > Light) is another quick-acting move that keeps enemies under pressure. The damage increases per hit, so getting those additional strikes in is worth it.

  • Cartwheel Kick (hold Light) is a great way to break through an enemy's guard, and makes for a fantastic combo starter. It’s especially effective when you combine it with Shield Sweep (Light after Cartwheel kick), which knocks foes off their feet for additional combo potential.

  • Want to build a chunk of stun damage right at the start of a combo? Super Punch (Sprint + Light) is a great way to start. Not only does it do decent stun on its own, it staggers them so you can follow up with additional hits.

  • Feinting Uppercut (Dodge + Light) can interrupt some enemies' attacks.

  • Shield Smash (Heavy) and Shield Dive (Heavy in the air) both lunge at targets and ram them with Captain America's shield. They were designed to get you to your targets quickly - after all, why wait for enemies to come to you?

  • Shield Bash (Hold Heavy) breaks through enemy defences and launches them off the ground for a juggle. If you want to join them in the air, invest in Rising Hope (Heavy immediately after Shield Bash). This will launch Cap up, so he can juggle them further.

  • Soldier's Slam (Hold Heavy in the air) is all about dealing area-of-effect damage and hitting multiple enemies. It also breaks shields and sends weaker enemies flying, making it an effective crowd control skill.

  • Torpedo Kick (Sprint + Heavy) uses Cap's Super Soldier strength to send enemies flying back. You can use this to kick your target into other enemies or even knock them off ledges!

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Ranged Attacks

  • Captain America is able to combo his ranged attacks, which increases damage and reactions triggered on enemies with each subsequent hit. Start with Cap’s standard Shield Throw (aim + throw). When he catches the shield, immediately throw it again for Resolute Throw. Finally, when the shield returns, throw it immediately again for Patriot’s Throw - a powerful finisher that inflicts massive damage on your target.

  • Ricochet Throw (charge Shield Throw and target enemies) shows off the physics defying nature of Cap's shield, letting him select up to three targets for it to bounce off of before it returns. You can increase the number of potential targets with Boomerang and Truth Seeker.

  • You can hit even more targets with Ricochet Throw with the Shield Kick skill. Press the throw button just as the shield is returning to send it pinging between nearby targets once again. Plus it looks awesome - definitely one of Cap’s flashiest moves!

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Intrinsic Ability

Captain America’s shield is, as you’d expect, an amazing defensive tool. Using Shield Block, Steve can avoid absorb the damage from incoming attacks. He can even sprint faster while blocking, and use his shield as a battering ram to smash into enemies.

  • Trigging the block just as an attack comes in will perform a Shield Parry, which sends a small shockwave out, staggering nearby foes. Not only does this interrupt them, it also reduces their impact resistance, making them easier to combo.

  • When you parry an attack, you can follow up with a couple of very useful skills. Counterstrike (Light attack after a Shield Parry) delivers a powerful, high-impact hit that can push enemies away from you. That’s extremely handy if you want to clear a bit of space.

  • Alternatively, Powerhouse (Heavy attack after a Shield Parry) does big damage and knocks enemies into the air. Try to immediately follow up with a juggle while they’re defenceless.

  • Cap can block projectiles or parry them back at enemies using Rebounder. For beam-based attacks, Mirror Shield is the skill to get. If you’re locked onto a foe, the reflected beam will hit them, otherwise you must aim it with the reticule.

  • Commander's Parry (Block + Light) uses a chunk of intrinsic energy, but will automatically parry incoming attacks and hit targets for large amounts of damage. It also adds a damage buff that increases the damage of the next attack Cap performs.

  • Commander's Call (Block + Heavy) sends out a shockwave that deals large amounts of stun damage to enemies. It's the perfect tool to hit grouped up enemies and stun them for Takedowns. The move also adds a damage buff and taunts enemies around you to draw their attention - useful if a nearby ally is in trouble or busy trying to destroy an objective.

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Captain America Heroic Skills

  • The Rally Cry heroic shows off Cap's ability to lead his team. He marks all enemies he attacks, allowing him and his allies to concentrate their attacks. Enemies that are marked take additional damage, have an increased chance of taking critical hits, and have chances to drop heroic orbs when defeated to recharge your moves.

  • Rally Cry can be enhanced with additional specializations. For example, Call to Arms adds a defense buff to all nearby strike team members, while Point Man adds a taunt that makes enemies focus on Cap instead of his allies.

  • Other specializations, such as Hold the Line or Special Tactics make marked enemies drop orbs to recharge willpower or intrinsic energy. In short, Rally Cry is a powerful Heroic that encourages the team to stick together - which is very Captain America.

  • Steamroller is a super-charged shield throw that targets multiple enemies for extreme amounts of damage and stun status - very useful when you’re facing a horde of enemies.

  • Another reason Steamroller excels against crowds is the ability to customize it to drop battlefield pickups for every two enemies it takes out at a time. You can choose to make it drop Regen Orbs, Heroic Orbs and Intrinsic Orbs, and switch between these at any time.

  • The Ultimate Heroic Brooklyn Brawler lets Captain America go all out against his foes, boosting his defensive capabilities and unleashing a series of shield throws on his light attacks that each hit enemies multiple times. It’s fantastic at dealing a tremendous amount of damage very quickly.

  • There are lots of fun ways to customize Brooklyn Brawler, and experimenting with different combinations of specializations is a lot of fun. One effective combination is to use CQC Specialist, which lets you do a Takedown on any critically wounded enemy, and Adrenaline Rush, which extends the duration of the move with every Takedown. This lets you keep Brooklyn Brawler going for much longer and essentially turns Cap into a one man army!

Image credit: RiffianGaming

Basic Combos

Cap is something of a combo specialist, capably of long strings of attacks that are as painful for enemies as they are enjoyable to pull off. Here are some of the simplest:

  • Heavy > Heavy, > Light > Light > Light - A simple combo that quickly gets to an enemy, hits them a few times, and then knocks them away.

  • Dodge + Heavy (Grand Slam) > Jump > Light > Light > Heavy - This quick launcher and air combo works well on basic enemies.

  • Hold Light (Cartwheel Kick) > Light (Shield Sweep) > Light > Light > Light > Heavy - Break through an enemy’s guard and combo them before sending out a shockwave of damage and launching them into the air.

Intermediate Combos

The following combos may require a bit more practice, but their effectiveness makes it worth it.

  • Hold Heavy (Shield Bash) > Heavy (Rising Hope) > Light > Light > Heavy - Break through enemy guards, juggle them in the air for a bit, then slam them back to the ground!

  • Trigger Brooklyn Brawler > Light > Light > Heavy > Light > Light > Heavy (Shield Strike) - Each Light attack hits the enemy twice and is capable of piercing through enemy defences. By adding in a heavy attack midway through, you extend the combo by an additional hit before triggering a heavy combo finisher as the finale.

Advanced Combos

You don’t have to be a Super Soldier to land these combos, but a bit of training will definitely help. Give them a go and don’t worry if you don’t succeed - channel the spirit of Steve Rogers and try again. After all, you can do this all day.

  • Vault over an enemy > Light > Light > Light > Heavy > Jump > Light > Light > Hold Heavy (Soldier's Slam) - Open up the enemy and combo them, then launch them into the air for additional air juggling, and finally delivers an AOE slam. This combination also deals a large amount of stun damage.

  • Shield Parry > Light (Counterstrike) > Sprint + Hold Block until you hit the enemy > Heavy (Torpedo Kick) > Aim + Throw once > then twice > then hold Throw and release when charged (Ricochet Throw) > Throw (Shield Kick) - With practiced aim, you can work shield throws into Cap's melee combos to extend his reach to any of the enemies he likes and sending them flying.

Hopefully that brief Captain America boot camp proved useful. If you’d like to read more tips and tricks for other members of Marvel’s Avengers, check out my other guides:

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