Chopper Guide by fat_bud

Version: 1.3 | Updated: 05/29/06 | Printable Version

Battlefield 2 Chopper Guide by Budzilla v1.3      29/05/2006

This may be not be reproduced under any circumstances except for personal, 
private use. It may not be placed on any web site or otherwise distributed 
publicly without advance written permission. Use of this guide on any other 
web site or as a part of any public display is strictly prohibited, and a 
violation of copyright.


Battlefield 2 has been out for a while, yet there are many people new to the 
game who are mearly getting their feet wet. Unfortunately that means they are
inexperinced with flying helicopters. Helicopters are easily the make or break
unit of any game(in publc servers at least).  This guide is intended to help
get new players up to speed on the basics of flying and fighting, despite the
complete lack of documentation that came with Battlefield 2.  Please take time
to read this guide if you are new to BF2 AND don't say, "No Duh!" There are 
plenty of players who make mind boggling stupid decisions while flying.
Dont't forget to enjoy yourself!

**Important**This guide has been updated for the game mechanics in the 1.3
patch. I don't know what little surprises EA and Dice have for us in the near
future. So this will be my last update becasuse I'm too lazy and not getting
paid for this. I can't see myself re-writing this thing after every patch that
comes out.


   a)Getting Started
     i-Control Set Up
     ii-Other Stuff Which Is Helpful 
     iii-Creating A Game
   b)Flying Around
     ii-Level Flight
     vi- Challenges
   c)Special Forces Helicopter Movement
   a)Take Off
   b)Evading Income Fire
   d)Attack Helicopter Weapons
     i-TV Missile
     ii-20mm Cannon
     iii-Unguided Rockets
   e)Transport Helicopter Weapons
     ii-.50 Cal


   a)Character Classes for attack choppers
   b)Flag Whoring aka Flag Skipping, Stat Farming
     i- Character Classes
     ii- Tactics



7. Special Thanks

8. Mistakes, corrections and adding other information

9. About the Author

10. Version History  


  a)Getting Started
    i-Control Setup
      W - Increase Motor Speed
      S - Decrease Motor Speed
      A - Turn Left
      D - Turn Right
      X - Drop Flares

                                    / \
                                     | Mouse Foward - Tilt Nose Down
Left Mouse Button- Fire       /              \   Right Mouse Button - 
                             /                \  Change Weapon
                             |                 |
                             |                 | Mouse Right - 
Mouse Left -                 |                 | _______________________>
Slide Chopper Left           |                 |
            <______________  |                 |Slide Chopper Right
                             |                 |
                             |                 |
                             |                 |

                                     | Mouse Backwards - Tilt Nose Up
                                    \ /

**Note** If you inverse the Mouse in Settings then pushing the mouse foward
will tilt the nose foward and visa versa.

    ii-Other Stuff Which Is Helpful
    RAM: Get 2gigs of the stuff! I noticed a huge improvement in loading times
    when  I upgraded from 1 gig. With less disk swapping going on, you will
    have a smoother flight
    Video Settings: Crank up that draw distance to the maximum!
    Headset: VOIP rocks and you know it! It easier to say to your pilot, "AA
    GUNS TO OUR LEFT!!" than to type it out. Spend some cash on a headset and 
    you will get alot more out of Battlefield 2
    Patience: Take your time and be prepared to die alot. You won't be a good 
    pilot overnight or in a week but keep at it and you will get loads of Gold
    stars to impress people of the opposite sex

    iii-Creating A Game
    OK.  First of all we need a practice arena.  Don't practice online because
    this will make you very unpopular.  Click on Multiplayer tab at the top of
    the screen and select "Create Local". Find a large map(64 players) like 
    Dragon Valley.
    Okay press and hold the "W" key to spin up your motor.  After sometime the
    chopper will begin to liftoff, for the moment gain height. 

    ii-Level Flight
    OK, to go straight ahead, tilt the nose of the chopper downwards slightly, 
    notice that you are going foward. The same principle applies to flying 
    backwards. Maintain motor speed and tilt backwards. DON'T be aggresive 
    with how much you tilt the chopper otherwise you will be a smoking hole 
    in the ground. Treat the chopper like a baby for the time being.

**NOTE**When flying you will have to be giving constant adjustments with the 
mouse even in level flight

    Once you master flying straight ahead it's time to turn.  Press and hold
    either the "A" or "D" keys to turn in whatever direction you wish to head 
    to. You will notice that you will start to lose height in most cases. Use 
    the mouse to keep the nose from dipping too much.

    Decrease motor speed, slow the chopper down to 40Km/h or less. Keep the 
    helicopter level with ground (and make sure the ground is level!). When 
    you are a metre or so above tilt your nose back slightly and I mean only
    a fraction! At all times you should be holding down the "S" key so your
    landing can be as smooth as possible.

    To strafe move the mouse to the left or right SLIGHTLY! If you continue to
    move the mouse it will roll over and crash. Make sure you are holding the
    increase motor speed button 

  With flying the best way to get better is to practice and practice and 
  practice. Did I say practice? I'm not joking either. Fly through streets,
  next to buildings along roads in a forest. 
    vi- Challenges
    If you think you are good, try the following obstacles (64 Player maps).
    All are possible and if you can't do them, you will not make much of a 
    pilot online:
                -The large circular tunnel under Kubra Dam
                -Most warehouses can be entered where there is one 
                large door on one side
                -The TV station at Sharqi Peninsula. Take off with
                the Cobra and fly under the construction site bar that's
                connecting the two buildings
                -Hover under a carrier!

    These are pretty easy themsevles.

  c)Special Forces Helicopter Movement
  The helicopters in SF are HUGE. They handle differently too. Think about
  sliding acrosswet ice, let's say you turn right. While you maybe facing 
  your new direction, you will drift towards the way you were originally
  going. So flying these choppers requires more input then the other choppers.
  Just give yourself more lateral room to work with when you are fighting.


  If you are unfortunate to be a victim of spawn camping, take-off is very
  difficult.  You have two options jump in and spin like crazy(hold "A" or "D")
  if a sniper with an M95 is in the area or a Special Op guy is trying to plant
  C4 on you.  Just pray no team mates are on the helipad OR find and kill the 
  SOB who is making life difficult.

  b)Evading Incoming Fire
  This is the second most important part of this guide(behind flying 
  naturally). Make no mistake about it, helicopters are fragile and can 
  easily be shot down with a .50 calibre weapon.  What to do?:

  **Submission by L1b3rat0r**
  -When attacking a vehicle that sees you and fires back, try to fly in a
  random approach pattern while descending, and slow down so you can land 4-6
  rockets in a pass

  -Fly low! Fly so low try and not fly above tree top level. If they can't see
  you then they can't hit you therefore can't hurt you! A stinger might be
  looking up in the air for you while you are skulking near the ground. You 
  might point out that flying high gives you visibilty of the action and you 
  can hit you targets from afar. That's true but everyone can see you also 
  hitting targets from afar is difficult. Also multiple ground AA guns will 
  engage you. It is easy to escape one hostile AA gun. But more difficult to 
  escape 3. Jets are a different story but they can fly so fast and escape the
  threat so quickly it doesn't matter for them. Tree top level at highest!!!

  -Use as much cover as possible. Trees, hills, large buildings. Not only this
  can break lock of the missiles but guns won't be able to hit you either

  -Make a firing run on your target and when you return come from another
  direction which is unexpected

  -Circle Strafe! This is where you are flying in circles around a target and
  you ALWAYS have your nose (therefore your guns) pointed at the target. To do
  this move hold the "W" key and either "A" or "D" Then slide the chooper in
  the opposite direction you are turning. It is easier than it sounds.  When 
  firing rockets in attack choppers always aim the rockets slightly to the 
  left of the target if your are circling right and visa versa

  -If you have a lock on warning in your cockpit and you are certain the enemy
  is a hostile jet. Find cover or even better beam the enemy.  What is 
  beaming? Where the enemy is flying towards you at your 3 o'clock or 9 o'clock
  position. So think of a  side on collision with a car and you pretty much 
  have it.  The advantages of this move is that the aircraft will have a hard
  time getting a lock on you because you are crossing their HUD too quickly for
  them and their missiles will have to turn really hard to get you.

  -As you get better try to fly faster

  -When flying transport choppers when you see multiple APCs and tanks -  RUN!!

  -NEVER EVER SOLELY RELY ON YOUR FLARES to escape threats. A machine gun or 
  cannon can still shoot you down and a skilled air defence solider can fire 
  his missiles after the flares you dropped are no longer effective

  Good aim, fire power and alignment of the planets might help when shooting 
  down foes whether you are in the pilot or gunner seat.  

  You might think that's BS. I've flown in Blackhawks where the 
  players on the minigun failed to fire a single round at a TOW missile or 
  Stinger site. I've yelled at them over VOIP, "!$#@ HELL. YOU #!@#($#@ shoot 
  the Stinger it is right infront of you. Less than 10 metres away!"  To 
  replies of, "I didn't see it! Not my fault."  Yes its your fault if the pilot
  is giving you targets to hit but you fail to even fire your gun.

  This is differnet from missing your target because the opposition of course 
  does not want to be killed. When you are a gunner you have a much better 
  visibilty then your pilot. ALWAYS BE LOOKING FOR TARGETS. This is especially
  true at enemy spawn points.

  Keep your pilot informed of any threats that can shoot you down.

  Lead Targets! If a target is moving aim slightly ahead of it of where its 
  travelling. If you never lead a moving target you will miss most of the time.
  How much leading depends on the weapon(guns need some while rockets need

  Make sure that cannon doesn't overheat.

  **Submission by L1b3rat0r**
  If the pilot comes to an almost complete stop and flies low when not at a
  helipad, he probably sees something he wants you to shoot.

    i- TV Missile
    The TV missile is tricky to use but instant death against anyone who it 
    hits. The gunner of any attack chopper has access to 8 of these babies.  
    When in the gunner position right click to switch to TV mode. A black and 
    white screen will appear. When you have a target click on it and the 
    missile will at that excact point. Don't fire at a target that's near the 
    edge of the screen when the taget is less than 70 metres away or the 
    missile will miss the target because it cannot turn in time. Also you can 
    update the missile's impact point by double clicking in the TV view. 
    Which makes it handy when shooting down other choppers!

**Note** The TV missile is very dodgy at times. While its automically supposed
to load another after you launched one, sometimes it won't(I'm not sure if this
is a bug or a design decision). So after the missile you have fired is 
destroyed enter TV mode again and make sure the loading sequence is taking 

**Note** The centre of the TV view for the gunner on the PILOTS HUD is not the
centre of the screen. In regular BF2 all TV missile cameras are centred
between the centre of the screen and the gunners view info display. With SF
helicopters the centre of the TV view for the gunner in the PILOTS HUD is
about a centimetre(half an inch) below the gunner view display. If you are a
The SF helicopters are  very difficult to line up with long range TV shots,
they also handle differently so it is easy to flip them if they are tilted
back too far.

**Update** The 1.03 patch seems to make the TV missile more responsive to the
gunners commands.

    ii- 20mm Cannon
    The front of each attack chopper has a variant of these. The Chinese and 
    American cannons are pretty much equal in terms of fire power. However the 
    MEC chopper cannon seems extremely powerful and has lots of splash damage.
    This makes it very desireable especially against infantry and light 
    vechicles. The gunner gets this weapon and mearly fires away. Be careful
    that you don't hold down the trigger for too long or the gun will overheat
    check your heat status every few seconds.

**Note** Press "C" once to change view to HUD only for greater visibilty.
The patch makes the cannon more effective on the China and Cobra against 

    iii- Unguided Rockets
    Remember how I said fly low?? This is why. You have to point your nose at 
    the target to hit it.  Also notice how the crosshair is slighly lower than
    the point of impact? The rockets are not parellel but are actually aimed 
    slightly up. Practice makes perfect. UNLOAD ALL ROCKETS in one attack run.
    When you get better, aim for the rear of tanks where the armour is weaker.
    A full 8 rocket barrage against confined enemy is very devestating.

**Note** Remember to pull up when your rockets run out!

**Submission by L1b3rat0r**
Moving slower and lower will make your rockets hit closer to the reticles

    i- Minigun
    Nothing too mini about this beast. Fires an insane number of hard hitting 
    rounds and tears up infantry like no other weapon in the game. Of course 
    a due to its power to deter enemies it usually leads to flag whoring. 
    Something that I love doing. Naturally the gun is mounted on the side of 
    the blackhawk so keep giving directions to your pilot of where targets are
    and watch your score go up and up! However once this gun overheats it takes
    ages to cool down. Short bursts please.

**Note**Since 1.2 patch this thing was completely nerfed then improved up and 
only God knows now. The minigun is weaker that I've seen plenty of infantry
dance around the bullets and survive. It's now not much better than the .50cal
guns on the other transport choppers. Thanks EA and Dice good work on removing
the America's ONLY firepower advantage in the skies or anywhere for that
matter. *Steps off soapbox.*

    ii- .50 Cal
    This weapon is really only effective on stationary vechicles, since the 
    helicopter is always moving. You can guess that this weapon is almost 
    useless when mounted on a chopper.

                             -GOOD OBSERVATION SKILLS ARE A MUST            
                             -LEAD TARGETS
                             -TRY TO FIRE IN SHORT BIRSTS when you are using 
                             cannons or side guns
                             -USE COVER
                             -FLY LOW
                             -IMPROVISE no guide can cover every situation
                             -PRACTICE AND BE PREPARED TO DIE ALOT
                              *Submitted by SplinterRomp*

  a)Character Classes for attack choppers
  The best classes to use would be the Medic and Engineer. Chances are bullets 
  will penetrate the cockpit glass and will seriously injure you. A medic will
  automatically heal you and himself. An engineer won't be able to fix their 
  own vechicle however if there are 2 choppers around fighting together they 
  can quickly hide and repair themselves without going back to base.
  Support isn't too much of a help because it takes forever to be resupplied.

  b)Flag Whoring aka Flag Skipping, Stat Farming
  This is a frowned upon practice however if you are detractor I dare you to 
  fly a chopper around for 10 minutes without getting shot down or dying. This 
  practice is only effective in a blackhawk, less so on a shoebox and ever 
  worse in an attack chopper

  **Update** The 1.03 patch has very much put an end to this practice. Only the
  pilot can capture the spawn point, passengers have to hop out to speed up the
  capture.  Not really effective in heavy combat.  Of course you can make a few
  firing runs at the flag and thin out the oppostion then have your passengers
  jump out.  The choice is yours. Make sure the players manning the guns DON'T
  leave their position otherwise you are a clay pigeon.

     i- Character Classes
     Pilot: Medic
     Gunners: Support and Medic
     Back seats: All Engineers or 2 engineers and a Special Ops

     Naturally the engineers are in the back repairing like crazy. THEY MUST 
     ALWAYS BE IN THE BACK SEAT. There are 2 Medics onboard this will heal 
     the people in the back seats very quickly and increase their life 
     expectancy alot. While the support keeps resupplying people in the 
     back seats with ammo.  You will have noticed that instead of 3 engineers
     you can have 2 engineers and a Special Op. Anti-Tank classes are 
     hopeless because it is too difficult to aim and anti tank round when 
     flying.  When you come across armour or an APC the Specail OP can drop 
     loads of C4 on the victim(tanks and APCs cannot aim directly up) and 
     blow them to hell!

     ii- Tactics
     Not much in the way of tactics. Except when your are taking flag, spin the
     helicopter slowly so the side guns can engage all targets. Also try to 
     stay far away from the flags as possible because sneaky people usually 
     lay loads of C4 for unsuspecting flag skippers. Also never ever land!

  Some Blackhawk causing your team alot of grief?? Get a shoebox and place C4 
  on the nose. Now fly into the blackhawk. The C4 will make sure you are 
  awarded with the kills. Can be very funny plus the other team might think 
  twice about flying. Make sure you passengers know about this one-way flight.

  d)Mobile Spawn Point
  A transpot helicopter can fly high enough so that it is out of range heat
  seeking air defense on the ground. Two or three squad leaders stay in the
  chopper while everyone jumps out. Boring for the squad leaders but very
  annoying to the opposition.


  -.50 Cal Guns. Whether mounted on a DPV or tank these guns to be utterly 
  respected. They can shoot down a chopper in no time. Run away or destroy
  them as quickly as possible

  -IGLA/Stinger. Can shoot you down easily enough. The good news is that they 
  are stationary and take along time to reload.  The best approach to take 
  them out when they are on a hill is to attack the site from below where the 
  sandbags surrounding the site give it a blind spot. Then unleash your flares
  and rockets when you see the target.

  -APC or AA gun. These 2 are just as bad as eachother. Take them out or avoid
  altogether. TV missle works best.
  **Submission by L1b3rat0r**
  -APCS take ~4 rockets to destroy

  -Tanks. Some lucky player might shoot you down with the main cannon, which is
  not very likely. However watch out for that .50 Cal on the roof....
  **Submission by L1b3rat0r**
  -Tanks take 5-6 rockets to destroy

  -Infantry. Rarely shoot down choppers. Anti tank soldiers have trouble 
  shooting down most choppers. Don't fly low when there are Specail Ops because
  they have C4 to stick to the belly of your chopper. As for M95 snipers don't
  worry about them when you are flying. My accuracy is 57% with rifles and I've
  only shot a pilot out of a chopper twice whilst in flight and it was just 
  hovering there. The rifle grenade that comes with Assault kits are a threat.
  3 hits from these can shoot you down.  

  -Aircraft. Jets are your biggest foe. Since you can fly slower, use that to 
  your advantage. Don't bother trying to shoot down this foe. 

**Submitted By SplinterRomp** - Shooting down a jet can be done. Fly behind a
jet that's flying straight and level and unload all your rockets. Only 2 hits
are need to take down a full health jet. Make sure the jet is close.

  -Helicopters. An attack chopper battle will boil down to who is the better 
  gunner. The MEC chopper has the advantage of a very powerful cannon. The best
  outcome would be to take out the opposing chopper with a TV missile. Try to 
  get in close and unleash that missile!

**Submission by L1b3rat0r**
  -IF you are engaged against a helicopter where it is behind you, tilt your 
  nose up and fly backwards in an attempt to get behind it and straighten 
  yourself out but;
              -make sure you have room
              -the more you tilt, the more dangerous but more effective the 
              manuever becomes

Thanks L1b3rat0r this manoeuvre is commonly called a "Cobra"


  US-    AH-1 "Cobra"
  MEC-   Mi-28 "Havoc"
  China- Z-10

  Pilot Weapon: Rockets (8x5) 
  Gunner Weapons: TV Missile (1x8)
                20mm Cannon (China and US helicopters contain 900 rounds)
                30mm Cannon (MEC chopper contains 450 rounds)

  Differences: The MEC chopper has a much more powerful cannon. Also it is
  considerably wider than the AH-1 and Z-10. So wide that if you aim perfectly
  with the rectile on the Mi-28 from in front or behind a Z-10 or Cobra, all 
  the unguided rockets will miss!
**Note**The 1.2 patch reduced the armour on these choppers. You can still take
a tank round to the body and survive. Since a tank round removes around 75% of
your health you better head to a friendly helipad.

  US-    UH-60   "Blackhawk"
  MEC-   Mi-17   "Hip" aka shoebox
  China- Z-8     aka shoebox

  Gunner Weapons: Minigun(Blackhawk only. Infinite rounds)
                .50Cal(Shoebox only. Infinite rounds)

  Differences: There is a slight seating difference between the MEC and 
  Chinese helicopters. The US gets the uber powerful minigun. Note that the
  name Shoebox is not an offical name. It is just the name me an my friends
  use online.

c)Special Forces
  US & UK AH-64 "Apache"
  Everyone Else MI-35 "Hind"
  Pilot Weapon: Rockets (8x5) 
  Gunner Weapons: TV Missile (1x8)
                  30mm Cannon 900 Rounds

  Differences: These attack choppers are almost the same. Except the Apache
  feels more responsive to the controls of the pilot and can turn tighter.

7.Thanks to these people (these are their Battlefield 2 names):
 SplinterRomp -For teaching me extra stuff about flying and laying down insane
 -=Cpt.Killj0y=- -Shooting me down so often when I was flying and he was in a
                jet. Self destruction is the ultimate form of self improvement

 and Everybody else in 4104!

 L1b3rat0r thanks for sending in your suggestions!

8.Mistakes, corrections and adding other information

   If there are mistakes in this guide or have me write in more advice, please
   contact me at the email below. 

   If you would like to add your own advice to this guide I may allow it. I
   WILL CREDIT YOU with what you contribute.

9. About the Author
Contact email:
BF2 Name: Budzilla
Clan: None
CPU: AMD 4200+ X2
RAM: 2GB 3500LL
HDD: 400Gb
VID: ATI 512Mb 1900XTX
CRT: 19inch LCD VX922
Sound: X-Fi Elite Pro with Logitech Z-5500 speakers and Headset
Mouse/Keyboard: Microsoft basic keyboard and a G5 Logitech mouse

Games I like: Little big Adventure 2
              Falcon 4.0 and Allied Force (F4 readers would notice that;)
              Deus Ex 1&2
              Call of Duty
              Rainbow 6 series
              Splinter Cell Series
              Hidden & Dangerous Series
              C&C Generals
              Enemy Territory
              Vampire Bloodlines: The Masquerade
              Commandos Series
              Half-Life 2
              Civilization 2

10. Version History

  1.0   (28/09/2005) First Release

  1.03  (24/10/2005) Update for 1.03 patch
                     Updated Intro
                     New tactics and pointers by me
                     Tactics Submitted by e-mail

Copyright 2005 Daniel Kinna