This is all post combat upgrade.
The best thing everyone can do is to forget everything they have learned about SWG so far.
The only relevant things to pre-CU are crafting and non combat professions.
Everything now is based on your Combat Rating. Combat Rating (viewed top left of your HAM bar or on your Character Sheet) is determined by your skills and how high they are.
The highest "CR" a player can have is 80. This can be attained by being either a high level Jedi (skills not rank) or being a dual master elite profession.
A single Master Elite character will have a combat rating of approximately 54..
eg. A Master Bounty Hunter will be CR54 enabling him to use the High Capacity Scatter Pistol.
Lets just concentrate on a Single Master Elite for now:
Missions are now tailored to you.. and only you if you are solo. It no longer matters what type of creature they used to be or are now. The mission will raise and lower the level of the creature to suit your CR. This can be very handy for people needing creature resources.. eg. when you used to need Talusian Avian Meat for crafting it was a big pain as it dropped from very low level creatures and you could only harvest approx 10 units from each creature. Now those creatures are tailored to your level and drop the amount of resources according to its new level..
(I was harvesting 123 units of Dantooine Wooly Hide from CR47 Huurton Pups last night).
Ok so now we have our mission.. Missions of equal to your CR will get 100% exp per kill.. Missions of - to your CR will get -10% exp loss per level of difference.. Missions of + to your CR will get +10% exp bonus per level of difference.
Most ranged combat professions will get the following attacks. A Bleed, A Stun, A Blind and possibly a Knockdown or Root (root shots are mainly concussion shots).
pre-CU if you were attacked you would automatically fire back.. Now you dont.. You have to set your default attack manually. Once you have done this your character will autoattack any viable target in range of the weapon equipped.
The best way to win a fight in PvE now is to hit with state attacks at range.
This is how I would attack a level 54 same level creature.
Go to the limit of my weapons range. Choose which default attack youd like to use.
For my Bounty Hunter I have chosen to alternate between Improved Critical Shot (Bounty Hunter Carbines) and RapidFire (Marksman).
To set your default attack press CTL+Left Mouse over the icon. A small orange circle and tick should appear on the icon to show this is set.
Start off by targetting the creature and hitting with a state attack like Bleed or Blind.
Queue up the knockdown or root shot (a yellow box will appear round the icon to show its queued).
Once you have the creature Bleeding, Blinded and rooted/knocked down then just leave the default attack to take over.
by the time the creature reaches you it should be under half health depending on the power of your weapon.
If you need to heal just ensure you have the Instant Stims on your quickbar. They dont heal a lot but they help. They also have a 1 minute reuse timer.
the creature should die pretty quickly. The worry is when you get attacked by more than one.
More than one same level creature will hurt you a lot.. but if you get attacked by one same level then get aggro from some low level they dont really do much more damage.
I was attacked on my CR47 BH by a lvl 45 huurton and two lvl 40 voritors yesterday and the only creature I had to worry about was the huurton. The voritors died within 2 or 3 shots each.
You will probably find that after killing the creature your health may be 1/2 or lower. This is no problem.. Just use the instant stims or the Bacta Shot ability if you have Novice Medic.
Dual Masters.. COMBAT RATING 80.
This is where it gets hard.
Dual Master could be a Master Swordsman and a Master Doctor.. His combat ability will still match that of a single master CR54 but the Master Doctor has increased the CR to 80.
This plays havoc with missions as all your missions will be around level 80. Remember if you are a dual master of two COMBAT professions you are still only a CR54 in effect.
You can only use one attack at once rendering your dual skill practically worthless. The only advantage of it is that you can use an attack from a swordsman with a pikemans weapon for example.
Level 80 creatures will hit you very very hard.. Most people have the misconception that they are CR80 players.. The only true CR80 can be a Jedi as they earn the combat rating from one profession. A non jedi CR80 player pulling CR80 missions will be very hard pushed to kill them solo.. if they come in groups to attack you your dead meat.. learn to use the /mount speeder macro.
The same principle for combat is with the single master.
Open with state attacks. Bleed, stun, blind, dizzy, intimidate (if you have them). States will effect the amount of damage done to you and the accuracy of the creature attacking you.
Knocking a creature down or changing its posture will prevent it from attacking for a couple of rounds.. stun also works well and prevents it hitting you for one round.
The less hits on you the less damage you take.
Keep the creature bleeding and in a state of blindness and it may not survive long enough to harm you too badly. Again set your default attack by CTL+Left Click on the icon you require.
Hit the Instant Stim when you need it and with luck youll be the one left standing.
It doesnt take too long to regenerate health particularly with things like vasarian brandy and the 10% regen buffs from doctors.
Jedi are different in a way that their specials will now use "ability costs" (the action bar) and also depending on your lightsaber and which special .. force costs.
I have the Jedi Initiates "Saber Hit" on my quickbar as my default attack as it will still do an appropriate amount of damage for my level but use minimal force power.
I have no ranged ability apart from the Novice Force Powers... "Force Hit" which is what used to be "Animal Scare".
It now does a very minor damage to a creature from range.. I use this to pull creatures but it does use a fairly large amount of force power compared to its damage.
Once the creature is to you open with the state attacks again.
Bleed, dizzy, blind, knockdown etc..
Then let your default attack take over. Hopefully if you are attacking a same level creature it will be reduced to at least half health before the default attacks take over.
use the instant stims again when needed.. Try to avoid using Heal Self as it takes a significant amount of force power.. save it for emergencies.
I have managed to kill same level or +1 level creatures with my jedi in about 20-30 seconds usually with 2/3 of my force bar remaining.. and I only have 1875 force power with my robes on.
I have channel force to regen it quickly.. remember this ability will not use your health.. it reduces your maximum health which does regenerate over time.
I try to use the channel force ability when travelling between lairs or returning to a mission terminal for another round of missions.
There are attacks called Armour Breaks and Improved Armour Breaks.
These attacks are now the most useful state attack there is. It reduces your targets armour absorbtion value.
To see exactly how much damage you are doing (go to options - chat - scroll down and enable the verbose combat log).
The creature will absorb xxx amount of your damage regardless of what weapon you are using as all weapons are now Energy or Kinetic (with secondary elemental damage).
The armour break ability when used as a principle hit will reduce that absorbtion factor.. how much depends on the level of your Armour Break.
I have been hitting for a possible 1400 with my Bounty Hunters new DXR6B Carbine which is Energy based.
I see the combat log reading "You hit for 903 damage. The XXXX has absorbed 350 damage of a possible 1253 and have taken 903 health damage".
If you hit with the Armour Break that 350 may be reduced by half..
Not all professions get an Armour Break ability but most people will go dual elite anyway and 95% of us will have this ability either on one profession or another.
One thing to remember is that if you group to level.. Regardless of your "CR" you will be classed as the same CR as the highest in your group.
This is why everyone on the group list window will show "80" if there is one 80 in the group. The missions will then be tailored to level 80..
The creatures will be just as hard to kill but the amount of creatures spawned will reflect the number in the group. I have seen a Piket Longhorn lair on dantooine
with 15 creatures spawned outside in one go.. and that was in a maxxed group of 8 players.
Remember that you experience will increase in a group..
As a Padawan Jedi with only 4000 sabers and 0002 enhance I was getting over 1100 per kill in the group.
it was pretty safe as we had so many Jedi that could heal and area heal.. the creatures dropped in about 10 seconds with 5 jedi hitting them. 1100 exp in 10 seconds sounds pretty good to me.
In one lair you can make a lot of experience providing you group correctly. This applies to all professions not just Jedi.
The added advantage with other professions is that you wont be hassled by bounty hunters after your hide.