When comparing Battlefield games side-by-side with Call of Duty games it would be fair to say that the EA DICE devs concentrate on realism more than their counterparts, especially in terms of multiplayer elements of their games, however someone claiming to be a retired SWAT member is more than critical of the Battlefield 3 beta’s tactical lights and lasers.
Now before we go into details we must point out that this person may not really be a former SWAT member, however we have no reason to believe this is the case, in fact his 600 word rant seems to portray extremely in-depth knowledge regarding tactical lights and laser lights.
According to his statement the lights and lasers in BF3 turns the realistic game into some fake game like Halo (his words not ours), here’s why: Apparently anyone who uses a weapon with a laser or light has to know about something known as “Light Discipline” – which in essence means lights can help you or hurt you as they can give away you and your team’s position – this is why such weapons have rubber pressure switched in real life as it is not good practice to flick a switch and keep these on permanently.
He suggests that the game needs a momentary switch for lights and lasers etc, in real life a soldier would only use flashlights for clearing buildings and cutting corners, they would then be turned off – you certainly wouldn’t see a soldier running around with a handgun with its light / laser on as this would be a death wish. He is also unimpressed by the high intensity of the flashlights in the game and said that in real life the LED lights used will very temporarily blind the enemy but it would be pretty easy for the target to return fire accurately.
Finally this is our favorite quote from his statement, when talking about lasers he says that they are “crutches for those who cannot point and shoot” and he goes on to say that there are so many variables which can ruin their effectiveness and are completely unnecessary for tactical purposes.
As you can see he feels that the guys behind Battlefield 3 need to tone down tactical lights and lasers etc, this was something we suggested in this post, therefore it is nice to get backing from an expert.
Below we have embedded the statement in its entirety (from the Battlefield 3 forums), it’s a good read:
Have a read then let us know whether you think he makes a valid point in the comments section.
I’M RETIRED AFTER 15 YEARS SWAT AND CAN TELL YOU THE TAC LIGHTS AND LASERS ARE BEING IMPROPERLY USED AND MAKE WHAT HAS BEEN A FAIRLY REALISTIC EXPERIENCE SEEM LIKE HALO OR SOME FAKE GAME.
I WAS ISSUED AN MP5 AND MADE HUNDREDS OF ENTRIES USING THAT WEAPON AS MY PRIMARY AND HAD MY KIMBER TLE 1911 .45 WITH TAC LIGHT ON MY RIGHT LEG IN MY DROP HOLSTER. MP5 9MM HAD A LIGHT ON THE FOREGRIP WITH A RUBBER PRESSURE SWITCH FOR QUICK ON AND OFF DEPRESSIONS.
THE REASON YOU NEED A LIGHT THAT TURNS ON AND OFF QUICKLY IS BECAUSE OF WHAT WE CALL “LIGHT DISCIPLINE” YOU CAN READ ALL ABOUT IT BUT IN SUMMARY LIGHTS CAN HELP YOU OR HURT YOU. WHEN MOVING IN A SQUAD OR CELL YOU NEVER WANT TO “BACK LIGHT” YOUR TEAM MEMBERS WHICH CREATES A TARGET FOR THE ENEMY. YOU NEVER WALK AROUND WITH YOUR LIGHTS ON OR THE ENEMY SEES YOU COMING AND CAN PICK YOU OFF EASILY BY SHOOTING AT YOUR LIGHTS AND WATCHING THEM BACK LIGHT YOUR TEAM. FLASHLIGHTS ON HANDGUNS OR SUB GUNS ARE FOR CLEARING BUILDINGS AND CUTTING CORNERS CAREFULLY THEN TURNED OFF TO MOVE UNDETECTED.
THIS GAME NEEDS A MOMENTARY SWITCH FOR LIGHTS, NOT AN ON/OFF SWITCH OR A STUPID HANGUN THAT AIMS UPWARD WITH LIGHT ON AS YOU RUN OR MOVE. NEVER RUN WITH A FLASHLIGHT ON. NEVER RUN WITH YOUR HANDGUN AIMED STRAIT UPWARD. NEVER WALK OR DO ANYTHING WITH YOUR WEAPON POINTED UPWARD, THAT’S HOLLYWOOD CRAP. GUNS ARE CARRIED IN A “LOW READY POSITION” DOWNWARD AND BELOW WHERE YOUR EYES ARE SCANNING FOR TARGETS THEN YOU CAN AQUIRE A TARGET AND RAISE UP AND FIRE. IF YOUR GUN IS AIMED UP YOU SEE THE SAME TARGET AND THEN LOWER THE GUN ON THE TARGET MOMENTARILY BLOCKING YOUR VISION AS YOUR ARM OR ARMS COME DOWN CROSSING YOUR FIELD OF VISION. (STUPID)
FLASHLIGHTS ARE PRIMARILY LED HIGH INTENSITY LIGHTS, BUT THEY DO NOT PRODUCE THE KIND OF LIGHT SIMULATED IN THIS GAME IN ALMOST ANY ENVIRONMENT THIS GAME SEEMS TO PRODUCE A HUGE WHITE AREA WHERE YOU CANNOT TELL THE CENTER OR SOURCE OF THE LIGHT. THAT IS BS. FLASHLIGHTS ON GUNS TEMPORARILY BLIND THREATS/TARGETS, BUT THAT LASTS ONLY A FEW MOMENTS AND THEN THE TARGET CAN RETURN FIRE ACCURATELY AIMING FOR YOUR LIGHT. THIS IS WHY THE FBI STARTED HOLDING FLASHLIGHTS IN THE OFF HAND UP HIGH AND TO THE SIDE SO IF THE CRIMINAL OR TARGET SEES THE LIGHT THEY MISS THE AGENT. THIS WAS DETERMINED AFTER POLICE AND FBI GOT SHOT TIME AND TIME AGAIN IN THE PAST USING THE “HOGAN” METHOD OF CROSSING ARMS AND KEEPING THE FLASHLIGHT NEAR THEIR HANDGUN.
LASERS ARE WHAT SWAT MEMBERS CALL “CRUTCHES FOR THOSE WHO CANNOT POINT SHOOT”. WE NEVER USED LASERS FOR A NUMBER OF REASONS BUT TO KEEP IT SHORT: IT TAKES LONGER TO LOOK FOR YOUR RED DOT ON THE SUSPECT THEN FIRE, THAN TO JUST FIRE FROM THE LOW READY POSITION USING A POINT AND SHOOT METHOD OF NON SITED FIRE. ALSO THEY DON’T EMIT A LONG BEAM VISIBLE UNLESS YOU ARE IN THE FOG OR SMOKE. IN EITHER CASE THEY GIVE AWAY YOUR ANGLE AND POSITION. THEY ARE COMPLETELY UNNECESSARY FOR TACTICAL PURPOSES AND ONLY USED FOR “PSYCHOLOGICAL” REASONS AND HOLLYWOOD DRAMA.
I CAN GO INTO MORE DETAIL, BUT THIS IS MY SUMMARY AND OPINION BASED ON 15 YEARS OF EXPERIENCE DOING THE REAL THING. RESEARCH THE TOPIC AND YOU WILL SEE I AM CORRECT.