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Specialists in COD Black Ops 3

Updated on September 1, 2015

Black Ops 3, the latest in the Call of Duty franchise, adds a new feature not available in BO2. Specialists adds a new twist, allowing further customization that goes beyond choosing weapons, perks, and attachments. Unlike Score Streaks, the specialist ability is based on game time instead of the players score. This allows every player to take advantage of this new feature.

In This Guide

  • A description of each Specialist and their abilities
  • A brief description of the advantages and disadvantages of each ability
  • Tips and Tricks

* Note: This guide is based off the beta version of Call of Duty: Black Ops 3. There may be changes and additions upon the release of the finished version.

Gravity Spikes release a powerful area attack
Gravity Spikes release a powerful area attack | Source


The Ruin specialist is best suited for players that like to be in the thick of it. His abilities allow him to quickly get into the action or perform a devastating close quarters attack. His special abilities include Gravity Spikes and Overdrive.

Gravity Spikes

This special weapon consists of two spikes that emit an area attack when thrust into the ground. Any player in the immediate vicinity will be instantly killed. When triggered, Ruin will leap into the air, driving the spikes into the ground when he lands. He moves quickly, but can be killed in the air before delivering this attack.


The Overdrive ability allows the player to move quickly for a short duration. This burst of speed can be utilized to get deep into enemy territory and to deliver quick attacks. His increased speed makes him a fast moving target to hit, which comes in handy in the Capture the Flag game mode.

Enemies become visible behind walls and barriers after being detected by your Vision Pulse
Enemies become visible behind walls and barriers after being detected by your Vision Pulse | Source


Outrider is based on a scout or spotter. She can use a powerful bow called the Sparrow or the Vision Pulse ability, which detects enemies in the area. This specialist works well for players that like being on the front line, but not necessarily in the open.


This powerful compound bow has a far reach and packs a powerful punch. Like the Crossbow in BO2, it explodes on contact. But unlike its predecessor, it has increased accuracy and enough power to send its targets flying. It is capable of firing up to 7 arrows, but is on a timer.

Vision Pulse

When triggered, this ability will release a red pulse that will detect enemies in its large range. The enemies will appear red for a short period of time after being detected, even if they are behind walls or other obstacles. However, the player will be aware they have been detected, due to themselves appear red on their screen.

The electricity can spread to other players in the targets vicinity.
The electricity can spread to other players in the targets vicinity. | Source


The Prophet is another front line specialist. His special weapon, Tempest, shoots an electrical charge that can spread to other nearby enemies. He also has a special ability that can allow him to escape danger.


This large rifle sends out an arc of electricity capable of traveling a long range. The shot must hit an enemy in order to be effective, but can then jump to other enemies that are nearby. There is a short delay between pulling the trigger and the shot firing, so it can take a little practice before mastering.


This special ability replicates a common game glitch that causes a player to return to a previous position. This can be annoying when not expecting it, but is valuable when used knowingly. Players should beware sneaking up on the Prophet, as they may find themselves as the one that is being followed.

The War Machine resemble an overgrown revolver, and can fire just as rapidly.
The War Machine resemble an overgrown revolver, and can fire just as rapidly. | Source


Like Ruin, Battery does well in high action situations. She may choose a familiar special weapon that packs an explosive punch, or to deflect bullets with special armor.

War Machine

Veterans of Black Ops are no stranger to the War Machine, but this new version may seem slightly foreign. This powerful launcher shoots a cluster of three grenades, which can bounce of surfaces before exploding. The cluster stays closely grouped, but being in the area of impact will be hazardous to your health.

Kinetic Armor

This special armor will deflect bullets away from the body, allowing the player to be shot without taking damage. However, it does not protect the head or against non bullet weapons. The major drawback to this armor is the large arsenal of non-bullet weapons in this game.

Are you feeling lucky, well are you.... punk
Are you feeling lucky, well are you.... punk | Source


This specialist has abilities that are suited for players that like to jump in and out of the action. The special weapon is a on shot kill handgun and the special ability allows the player to quickly build up Scorestreaks.


This large revolver has a slow rate of fire but packs a heavy punch. It is extremely accurate and is a one shot kill when it finds its target. It also has increased bullet penetration, which allows it to shoot though many barriers.

Combat Focus

This ability increases the amount of points earned towards Scorestreaks. Its timer takes about 30 seconds to count down, with a spike each time it is utilized. This ability is lost when the timer runs out or the player is killed.

I will take a mulligan
I will take a mulligan | Source


Nomad is the survivor specialist. His special weapon deploys devastating nano traps and his special ability is second chance on steroids.


This gun may resemble the Sliquifier, but it functions very differently. It shoots out a white goo, that forms pods on surfaces. These pods are filled with deadly nano-drones that will surround and kill any enemy that triggers them.


Unlike the Second Chance Perk from Black Ops 2, this allows you to escape death without assistance. When active and downed, a heart monitor will be displayed on your arm, counting down your heart beat. Triggering this ability before the heart beat reaches 0 will allow you to stand back up with full health.

The shell game from hell
The shell game from hell | Source


Reaper is a front line specialist that uses deception or superior fire power to defeat his adversaries. This robotic character can use a special weapon that is embedded in his arm o send out decoys to confuse his enemies.


Did you ever wonder what it would be like to have a Death Machine embedded in your arm. This special weapon has the fastest fire rate and 200 round magazine to ensure continual fire for a long period of time. The rounds will quickly destroy enemies and penetrate many barriers.


This special ability releases three blue decoys that now resemble the player. Until the ability ends, the player will also stand out with a bright blue glow. However, when used properly this ability can be very effective, even fooling the UAV into showing their location.

She doesn't realize that is already too late.
She doesn't realize that is already too late. | Source


This assassin specialist keeps to the shadows and has a fierce melee attack. His weapon is a knife embedded in his arm and his special ability is invisibility.


When triggered, the melee weapon will protrude from the players arm and be available when needed. The player can still fire a weapon, use equipment, and throw grenades while the counter is timing down. This melee attack has an increased range, which will cause the player to leap forward towards it target very quickly.

Active Camo

This ability allows the player to be virtually invisible for a short period of time. This can allow the player to sneak past enemies or get into a position to take them out. However, once you fire, you will become visible.

Tips and Tricks

  • Each Specialist has a weapon or ability available. The abilities charge much faster than the weapons.
  • Before a game begins, each player and their specialist ability is displayed on the screen. Paying attention to this will let you know what you might expect.
  • Each ability has a drawback, learning those drawbacks will allow you to survive longer.

Favorite Specialist

Which is your favorite Specialist?

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