I've been playing through the game for the first time (I'm at the point where you finally meet the Wheel Clan, so having gotten through the dungeon everybody hates I'd say I've made it farther than some people, haha), I didn't really have a big problem playing as a gunslinger, but I bought the schematics to make bullets pretty early on. It's a lot cheaper because you can buy saltpeter (I think it's saltpeter, it's been a while since I played) in most stores pretty cheaply and find charcoal in the trash cans for free, this is all you need to make 20 bullets per satlpeter/charcoal mix (I think this factored out to 1 gold per bullet instead of 3 or 4 gold per bullet, depending on your trading skills and charisma, etc., so it does end up saving you a lot of money in the long run).
Also I have relied on molotov cocktails quite a bit early on in the game, they are also a simple schematic and very cheap for the damage they cause. They are still very useful even at this point and you can make 15-20 of them pretty easily/cheaply, all you need to do is buy fuel at the shop (not the general store--the store with the lady that sells chemistry supplies. There's one in Tarant), go around to trash cans and find a bunch of rags. Quite easy to make.
However, the best thing to do early on with a gunslinger is use one of your Fate Points (I think that's what they're called? Not sure) and steal the Handcannon from Sammy Whtie in Tarant (he's the guy north of the main entrance a few screens, he's a halfling who argues with you and insults you). The Handcannon basically blows everything to smithereens, especially early on. If your gunslinger also had high thief skills like mine though you might be able to steal it that way. Basically by having a gun that causes so much damage you'll not only decimate most enemies in the first half of the game, but you'll be saving on bullets because you simply won't need as many.
Oh, and if you're playing as a gunslinger it makes sense to start with the Bandit perk/background (I think it's the bandit perk), you get a free gun that is pretty useful until you can get another one. Unfortunately, you get nothing else to start with, and you're foregoing other possible perks that might be better.
Another good weapon later is the repeating rifle but you have to make it. It uses two bullets per shot, though. I've been switching between the handcannon and the repeating rifle as needed--some enemies are faster than others and the high rate of fire for the repeating rifle is needed to take them out before they can get near you. It also uses up less action points than the handcannon, so you can sometimes use it once or twice, retreat a few steps with the remainder of your AP (my character is a high agility thief type), and enemies can't reach you AND attack you in the same turn, or if they can they can only hit you once . This is a very important strategy to use on enemies that cause a lot of damage like the glass spiders in the Wheel Clan cave or other powerful monsters.
You actually have to move around a bit in this game in battle if you want to live. Make sure you're playing on turn-based.
Also, my character has a lot of other tech skills, explosives are important as I mentioned, I think I have a couple of levels in some of the other ones like electricity, smithing, gunmaking, etc. Also your personal attribute skills are important, make sure you put points into firearms and such.
Anyway, those are all the tips I have from what I can remember from my playing through the game so far (it's been a few months since I logged any time on it).
EDIT: Oh, and you should still carry a sword. I've had to use one once or twice on certain enemies for various reasons--for instance stone enemies I think are impervious to bullets, you have to pound on them with a sword? Again it's been several months since I logged any time on it, I need to get back to it sometime.
ANOTHER EDIT: Oh, and since gunslingers are basically a tech class (magic is basically useless if you're putting all these points into tech skills), you should also take herbology. That allows you to make the non-magical healing salves and such that allow you to heal tech people. You have to find the ingredients, of course, but like all the other things you make they're not too hard to find...
Oh, I also have two charged rings. I either made them or found them, I forget, but they help with speed/action points I believe...
Post edited October 29, 2012 by baramos