Monday, April 20, 2015

ArmA 3 - Sniper Shots Downhill

Now with the weapons resting in the Marksman DLC for ArmA 3 out I feel comfortable for some sniper training.

I used to call this screenshot "The Luckiest CSAT SoB Ever". The purple line is the trajectory of my bullet fired from a hill some 1,200 meters away and I thought that this guy just got lucky I didn't blow up his head. Lucky and all, it turns out that my marksmanship was the problem.

By the way, do you guys use the trace bullets thing in the editor? It's quite easy to implement, just add a line of code in the initialization field of your unit.

Add exactly that in the initialization field of your unit. I think that bullet tracing is limited to single player and to your character only.
This bullet tracing routine has opened the pandora's box for me. I'm still learning my marksmanship theory, but so far I already feel more in command of the theory and training I am doing.

Today, I finally came to grips with something everybody tells you: it is best to fire from positions with a  flat angle of shot.

When you don't, you better get your act together ...

Firing into Agia Marina from a distance of 1,328 meters. The red line is the trace of my bullets. I'm at a higher altitude than my target.
The target is in Agia Marina's streets. In this screenshot, round traces (purple lines) with the gun zeroed at 1,300 meters (short impacts) and with the gun zeroed at 1,400 meters (over impacts). All rounds fired with an aim for the bulls eye. Off course at both zeroings both groups of shots fall short or long. 

The view from my firing position. Note the bullet traces.
Now with my aiming corrected for my higher firing position and with the gun zeroed at 1,400 meters, I get a better score.
I settled for a quick fix: to aim low. This low aiming when firing at a distant target up or down a hill is something every experienced shooter knows. It turns out that the arching of the bullet over its trajectory can play a nasty trick on the unsuspecting newbie like me. It is something very similar to what it happens with the (?!) targeting pod in modern aircraft. Yeah, it's heartbreaking to see ordnance to impact beyond the target.

But such a thing is only relevant in shot at angles of 30 degrees up or down (the elevation in this example was 9 degrees down). The other solution at 9 degrees is to just use the markings in the optics to find a range of ~1,328 meters. I am now trying to find a position with a high angle of shot. Stay tuned.