Anyone who has played Black Ops 4 knows the SDM is technically a sniper rifle. Being honest, I was dreading using this gun because it is the only “sniper rifle” that requires head-shots rather than one shot kills. I thought this was going to be particularly difficult compared to the Paladin and Outlaw which I had already achieved gold status with. Turns out, the SDM is actually really good and surprisingly easy to get head-shots with. I play in core and on Xbox One S, so depending on your play style and what you play the game with/on you might not have the same experience as I did.
My first impressions were not the greatest. The scope that it comes with does not fit the best play style for the gun in my opinion. The stock scope is more or less a standard sniper rifle scope. The magnification for sniper rifle scopes is too great for Call of Duty Black Ops 4’s maps personally so I swapped it out for the Dual Zoom sight and eventually graduated to the Holographic sight. I usually do not use the Holographic sight, mostly because it obstructs your view a little too much. With the SDM you want to stay out of CQB as much as possible, so the Holographic is actually a nice fit. Normally I’d put on a Recon sight because it is just the superior sight but the SDM cannot use the Recon sight which is disappointing.
One advantage that the base tactical rifles have over the SDM is the recoil control and idle sway while aiming. Over time you will unlock the attachments that bring the SDM up to par with these weapons. The Grip and Stabilizer attachments will keep your shot accurate and help you with your long distance kills. FMJ is a must on all weapons that can equip it to counter opponents using armor. With the way I set up the SDM, it is basically a slightly more powerful Auger DMR.
The reason the SDM is better at doing the DMR’s job is because it has a lower TTK. The SDM is a one shot kill to the head like any sniper rifle so if you take the time to place your shots the SDM can out-kill any gun at any range. The only down side to the SDM is its slower ADS time and handling speeds. It is technically a sniper rifle after all. If you have more of a fast pace play style, maybe a tactical rifle will be more fitting because you move faster with them. The key with the SDM is that if you see them first you win the fight because of your superior TTK so playing a little passively and letting enemies come to you is efficient.
The SDM excels at peeking being as accurate as it is. Holding angles and head-glitching are the bread and butter of accurate guns. Blending the strengths of a tactical rifle and a sniper rifle and playing to those advantages will see you coming out on top in gun fights more often. Did I not mention how fun it is too? Like I said, I thought the SDM was going to be dreadful to use. Although it was for the first few games, after getting the right attachments I fully realized the potential of a new play style that only the SDM can deliver. The SDM is definitely my favorite of the three sniper rifles that I’ve worked on so far. It feels amazing to get those headshot kills. On console, the aim assist works to your advantage. The aim assist prioritizes the chest, so when you aim towards someone your aim will snap involuntarily towards your opponents chest. This is perfect for the SDM seeing as you can either push up a little for the headshot or pop him once then aim for the head.
Even if you are not going for dark matter or just diamond snipers, I encourage everyone to try out the SDM. I unfairly shut it out until I had to use it and I ended up enjoying the hell out of it.