Leadheads are the most generic enemies in the BioShock series, serving as the Rapture equivalent of the standard mook with a gun in any videogame. In the sequel, they were made a little bit more interesting with the addition of a shotgun variety and grenades. If there's going to be another sequel, they need to be a bit more varied than that. Also, why aren't there any snipers?
- Level 1: Scrounger Gene Tonic
- Level 2: +Damage
- Level 3: Static Discharge 2 Gene Tonic
- Level 4: ++Damage
- Level 5: Faster firing rate for all weapons
For more variety, each Splicer type should not only have their own weapon, but also their own grenades, tactics and stats:
Pistol Leadhead: The first Leadhead you'll encounter. They carry Pistols, but no grenades. However, this doesn't mean they can't deal a fair bit of damage: they have almost perfect accuracy, and are the most maneuverable of all Leadheads. They'll try to keep their distance from the player whenever possible and take potshots from advantageous spots.
- Weapon: Pistol.
- Grenade Type: None.
- Strengths: High speed, crack shots.
- Weaknesses: Lowest health of all Leadheads, somewhat weak weapons.
Machine Gun Leadhead: Although they sport superior firepower and health to the Pistol variety, they're nowhere as accurate or fast. However, they've also got frag grenades, which they'll use to bust the player out of cover. These guys will usually find a good cover spot and fire at the player from there, although they won't try to escape from them as much.
- Weapon: Machine Gun.
- Grenade Type: Frag Grenade. Explode after a certain amount of time, dealing damage to anything in the surrounding area.
- Strengths: Powerful weapon.
- Weaknesses: Inaccurate.
Shotgun Leadhead: These guys carry, erm, Shotguns. They're tough, fast and deadly at close ranges, and will try to approach and flank the player. They also carry Molotov Cocktails, which can prevent the player from escaping. Thankfully, these guys are a bit too aggressive, and don't value the importance of taking cover. They also have a habit of charging at the player headlong, allowing the latter to gun them down.
- Weapon: Shotgun.
- Grenade Type: Molotov Cocktail. Cover an area in flames upon impact, setting anything in it on fire.
- Strengths: Deadly at close ranges, high health and speed.
- Weaknesses: Make easy targets of themselves, don't take cover.
After a while, the player'll learn each Leadhead's quirks and will have a ready-made strategy for every possible encounter. Which is why each Leadhead type develops new and more powerful abilities, which will force the player to rethink a few of their battle plans:
Pistol Leadhead evolves into Sniper Leadhead: Even more accurate than their predecessors, Snipers will shoot the player from a distance, and will try to keep said distance at all times, even running away from potential threats. Just in case anyone gets too close, they've got Proximity Mines at the ready, which they'll lay as traps on passageways, intersections and doors.
- Weapon: Sniper Rifle.
- Grenade Type: Proximity Mine. Stick to the scenery and explode if there's an enemy nearby.
- Strengths: Fast, accurate, very powerful weapon.
- Weaknesses: Ineffective at close ranges, lower health than the other two types, cowardly.
Machine Gun Leadhead evolves into Gunslinger Leadhead: They're just like Machine Gun Leadheads, except they've got two Machine Guns instead of one. This effectively turns them into very dangerous, if not very accurate, gun nuts. On the downside, they take ages to reload. These guys have traded their Frag Grenades for the more precise Sticky Bombs.
- Weapon: Dual Machine Guns.
- Grenade Type: Sticky Bomb. Stick to the scenery (and people) and explode after a set amount of time.
- Strengths: Extremely dangerous at any range, can target two enemies at once.
- Weaknesses: Inaccurate, become completely defenseless for a few moments while reloading.
Shotgun Leadhead evolves into Vanguard Leadhead: Thank goodness, these Splicers don't carry two Shotguns at a time. However, that doesn't mean they're not to be feared anymore. Instead, they've decided to wear body and head armor, bolstering their already high health and rendering them immune to Antipersonnel Rounds and headshots (unless you pull their masks off or hit them in the back of the head). On the plus side, they still haven't learned to take cover and have developed a vulnerability to Armor-Piercing rounds. Also, with all the metal they're wearing, they're much more affected by electrical attacks. The Vanguards have switched their primitive Molotovs for the much more advanced Rolling Mines, which can seek out the player even behind cover.
- Weapon: Shotgun.
- Grenade Type: Rolling Mine. When deployed, will roll towards the enemy closest to them and explode.
- Strengths: Deadly at close range, fast, ultra-high health, immune to headshots and Antipersonnel Rounds from the front.
- Weaknesses: Make easy targets of themselves, don't take cover, vulnerable to Armor-Piercing rounds and electricity, armorless at the back.
And finally, after attempting to write this blog post five times, I've finally done it. Whaddya think?