_____     _   _   _     ___ _     _   _   ___
               | __  |___| |_| |_| |___|  _|_|___| |_| | |__ |
               | __ -| .'|  _|  _| | -_|  _| | -_| | . |  _| |
               |_____|__,|_| |_| |_|___|_| |_|___|_|___| |___|

        __      __  _     _      _         _____       _     _      
        \ \    / / | |   (_)    | |       / ____|     (_)   | |     
         \ \  / /__| |__  _  ___| | ___  | |  __ _   _ _  __| | ___ 
          \ \/ / _ \ '_ \| |/ __| |/ _ \ | | |_ | | | | |/ _` |/ _ \
           \  /  __/ | | | | (__| |  __/ | |__| | |_| | | (_| |  __/
            \/ \___|_| |_|_|\___|_|\___|  \_____|\__,_|_|\__,_|\___|
                                                            

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
[I] Introduction
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Vehicles are a big part of the Battlefield experience. In fact, I would
venture to say that Modern Warfare 3 is the better small-arms simulator, while
Battlefield 3 is far better with vehicular combat. This work is a guide to that
aspect of the game. It only covers only the core of the game: the vanilla game
and B2K. More will be added later.

Tip: Press Ctrl+F to open find; use that with the Table of Contents below to
quickly and painlessly find what you want.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
[II] Table of Contents
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------

I.   Introduction
II.  Table of Contents
III. Version history
IV.  FAQ

1 --- Vehicle Basics
1.01 Spawning
1.02 Movement
1.02 Health and seats
1.03 Chase camera
1.04 Vehicles classes
1.05 Emplaced weapons
1.06 The Engineer
1.07 Specializations
1.08 Missile lock indicators

2 --- Specific controls
2.01 Driving: Boats, Light Vehicles, IFVs, MBTs, and Mobile AA Guns
2.02 Piloting: Helicopters
2.03 Piloting: Jets
2.04 Piloting: Scout Helicopters
2.05 Piloting: VSTOL Jets

3 --- Specific strategies
3.01 Light vehicles
3.02 Main Battle Tanks
3.03 Infantry Fighting Vehicles
3.04 Mobile Anti-Air Guns
3.05 Attack Helicopters and Scout Helicopters
3.06 Air Transport Helicopters
3.07 Jets

4 --- Vehicular destruction
4.01 Damage chart
4.02 Other vehicles and bullets
4.03 AT Rocket Launchers
4.04 Heat Seeker Rocket Launchers
4.05 AT mines and C4
4.06 Repair Tool
4.07 Laser designation

5 --- Setups

6 --- Maps

7 --- Other stuff
7.01 Point values
7.02 Ribbons and medals

V. Thank yous
VI. Copyright

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
[III] Version history
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------

v 1.00 --- 3/10/12
First version completed.

v 1.10 --- 3/14/12
Fixed some issues and expanded upon some concepts.

v 1.20 --- 3/23/12
Major rewrite of jets, additions to much of everything else.

v 1.21 --- 3/24/12
Completed proofread, should be fine until the big patch comes along.

v 1.30 --- 3/29/12
Rewrite of the Jet section, update for the gigantic patch.

v 1.31 --- 4/1/12
Better patch information, should be the last update.

v 1.40 --- 6/7/12
Update for the latest patch.

v 1.41 --- 7/6/12
Next patch.

v 1.50 --- 3/17/13
Got bored, picked it up again.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
[IV] FAQ
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Q: Are American vehicles better than Russian vehicles?
A peek into several player's (and my own) stats have shown Americans having a
slight advantage, getting more kills in fewer time. This is a function of poor
balancing; on a few maps, the Russian spawn position is simply outmatched by
the American one, and the US side wins more often. It's subtle, but it's there.

Q: How do specialization apply to special vehicles?
A-10 Thunderbolts and Su-25TM Frogfoots are the two vehicles that tack onto
a related vehicle class, using jet perks and giving you jet points when you
use them. Other vehicles - like Transport Helos and AMTRACs - get Smoke/IR
Flares and their own weapons, and don't give you points torwards related
vehicles.

Q: What is the chase camera?
In any vehicle, pressing C will activate the chase camera, giving you a third
person view of the situation. This gives greater combat awareness at the
expense of not being able to aim accurately. You can swap back at any time by
pressing C again. Although mainly used for combat dogfights in jets, the chase
camera is also useful for manuvering on the ground, or landing helos and jets;
it gives you a view of your surroundings, allowing you to better avoid
collisions with shrubery.

[1] Basics
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
[1.01] Spawning

Vehicles spawn in designated areas, always by a flag or base; the specific
vehicles that do spawn depends on the map and the circumstances. In Conquest,
vehicles spawn at each side's bases, first at the beginning of the round and
then a certain amount of time after the vehicle is destroyed (this is
controlled server-side and ranges from no time at all to a full minute or
more). When the match first starts, people will grab whatever vehicles they can
to get there faster and to start dishing out damage.

Vehicle spawns can generally be broken down into three categories. The first
is the instant spawn, in which a vehicle is made available again immediately
after destruction. This is an absolutely terrible scheme, as it ruins balance,
especially in the air; assets are resurrected just as soon as you manage to
put them down, and you'll be stuck in constant loops fighting other jets and
helicopters. These servers are unfortunately prevalent, for reasons I will
never be able to fathom. In addition, these servers tend to have rotating
drivers as well, as the vehicles will be unocuppied for some number of seconds
in between deaths, during which they are free game to others.

The second is the shortened respawn, generally configured to coincide with
player respawns. Although this is fun, and more or less ensures you will be
able to keep your vehicles, it's still a negative change; the same problems of
"rising from the dead" are presented, and you'll still have barely any time to
do much besides fight others of your type.

The third and final type is the normal, nominal respawn, and really the best
one. You're in a tank, and just outgunned an opponent; you can expect them to
STAY DOWN for a minute at least. No magical ressurection means balanced
gameplay for all, and in my opinion this is a win-win, even if vehicles are
harder to get.

Rush servers tend to not mess with vehicle respawns, because it breaks game
balance, as on many maps one side is slated to be more vehicle-heavy. This is
invariably a good thing. And yes, tank drivers, respawn times don't affect you
as much as they do jet drivers, as it takes you longer to drive to the combat
zone, but it's still an important long-term effect.

In addition, capping maps will cause vehicles to spawn there. So if you cap the
A flag and a tank is supposed to spawn there, and you are American, you will
get a Abrams; if Russian, a T-90. Non-base spawns only occur for land vehicles
and are generally simply lightly armored craft and boats; however, some caps
spawn more interesting and sought-after IFVs and MBTs instead, for instance
the first and last points on Caspian Border.

If a buddy in your squad is ocuppying a vehicle and there's an empty seat,
spawning on them will put you in that seat, magically giving them a few points
and some support, if they need it. You can spawn into empty seats on vehicles
in more general circumstances as well: all Jets and Transport Helicopters can
be spawned into upon spawning, and many vehicles in Rush allow this as well
within a certain radius of home base (tanks, IFVs, helos, even jeeps). However
past that range, the AMTRAC and Transport Helos are the sole vehicles into
which anyone can spawn into on the fly, making them very important support
mechanics in Rush.

Note: if you and another player attempt to enter the same vehicle near enough
to one another, you will get in between the point at which the message is sent
and the point at which the server works. The winner will be the one who sent
the server request first - generally, the player with the lower ping. The other
will be uncerimoniously dumped aside the vehicle.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
[1.02] Movement

Controls are fairly simple for anything that's not airborne. The mouse
controls either where you look or where you gun is pointed, independent of
where you are driving. The standard WSAD keys are used to move forward, back,
left, and right, respectively. Pressing the left mouse button fires your
weapon. If you have a secondary weapon, pressing 2 will activate it with a
weapon-specific sound and a different reticule.

Vehicles with wheels have to be moving to turn; those with treads (tanks) can
do so in place; this should be obvious.

Ground vehicles have the ability to sprint - by pressing down Shift you gun
the engine and head forward faster, but are less able to turn, which can get you
in trouble but is great for fleeing or getting places, not specifically in that
order.

Depending on the armor of your vehicle and your speed, crashing into something
may damage or even destroy your vehicle, or damage and even destroy the object.
The latter is generally true of lighter vehicles, the former of tanks. Make
your own observations; a ride through a fence probably won't hurt you in a
jeep, but one into the side of a building (a literal brick wall) probably will.
Heavy vehicles never take damage from their surroundings and cannot be flipped
over, the former being a change from BC2 (where a big enough gulch would slam
your treads).

Running over someone will kill them instantly, but you have to be moving at a
certain velocity to do this. Such kills are called roadkills, and are easiest
to get in light jeeps.

In the past, if you wanted to be a real dick, you'd get in a jeep, rush it
towards a teammate, and get out before it hits them - if they do not react
quickly enough they will be killed by a random vehicle as "bad luck". Such
teamkills have since been removed from the game, thankfully. A lot of
aggravation went with it.

It is possible to roadkill with air vehicles, but this is more difficult
because you are, well, airborne: dipping that low is dangerous unless fleeing,
and it's difficult to aim for a specific target without smashing into a tree or
an anti-air pole.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
[1.02] Health and vehicle seats

All vehicles have a certain amount of health, represented in an absolute
percentage out of 100 on the bottom right corner of your screen. Different
warning sounds and flaring messages play depending on how badly damaged you are
(if you are in anything besides a boat or a light vehicle), but the number in
the corner is your best representation of what's going on with your vehicle.

Different vehicles have different amounts of health, and can take different
amounts of shots from different weapons. Main Battle Tanks, for instance, have
a ton of health (the most in the game), and can thus take a lot of abuse before
blowing apart. As you take damage, your vehicle begins to smoke, lightly at
first but increasingly blackened as it enters worse and worse states of repair.
Eventually the engine will light on fire, which is a very bad thing indeed.

If your engine goes alight, you are disabled (whatever delivered the disabling
blow gets a Vehicle Disabled +100 bonus). Disabled vehicles manuveer worse and
move slower, on account of their engine being, well-on fire. In addition, about
three seconds after recieving disabling damage, you will begin to steadily lose
health, as your vehicle continues to burn up. This will be accompanied by a
screen fizz and pinging sound. Health will be lost at about two ticks a second,
and will cause your vehicle to blow up if not remedied.

Disabled vehicles can be temporarily stalled of losing health by repairing them
at least 1 health point. This will reset the damage clock, preventing further
bleeding for five seconds. A permanent solution can only be attained, however,
by repairing the engine. This requires first repairing the vehicle back to full
health, and then applying the Repair Tool for about another second to repair
the engine; yes, if you hit 100 health and you don't hold out the last bit, you
will start to bleed back down again from what seems like full health.

When you hit 85% health, you begin to get damage warning lights. At 70% you get
the good old blinking engine repair warning (bit quick on the saddle, dontcha
think?). Increasing levels of damage result in increasingly loud cachophanies
of warning lights, blinking cursors, and urgent beeps, but you only really need
that health box to tell you how much fight you have left in you. The disable
points vary by the vehicle; they are 53% in the IFV (strange, but true), 49% in
the Main Battle Tank and Mobile AA, and 34% in all air vehicles. These are the
points past which you have to either pop out (land) or land (air) to make
repairs.

It should be fairly obvious what happens when a vehicle hits 0 health, so
here's the short version: explosion. Standing near an exploding vehicle may or
may not be lethal.

Vehicles repair damage normally over time, if they have not been hit within a
certain amount of time (and have not caught fire). This occurs about 10 seconds
after the last hit, and causes your vehicle to regain health back up to 100% at
about 2 health points per second. Nonetheless you will get better results with
a welding torch or an EOD bot in terms of repairing speed, both of which repair
at about 5 health per second.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Each seat on a vehicle does something; what it does is specific to the vehicle.
Some are dedicated drivers and do nothing but drive or pilots, whereas other,
more sophisticated driver seats both mount weapons and control the vehicle.
Passenger seats may mount a machine gun or something similar, or they may
simply sit on the outside, able to fire their weapon through the side of the
vehicle (although this is not very recommended - try hitting much of anything
on a moving vehicle). In a few cases, like the last passenger seat in a Scout
Helicopter, passengers can't do anything at all, just sit there.

You can move between seats with the F keys, but make sure your F-Lock is on.

A note on all air vehicles: trees are semi-solid, thrasing your vehicle around
but not actually doing damage. Although you can crash through a fence without
any problems, air vehicles will take damage or blow up if they hit something
hard [enough]. The most prominent exemplars of this phenomena are what I have
christened "anti-air poles": random light poles and antennas jutting out of
the map. They seem innocuous enough, until you ram into one in a jet or a helo,
explode, and are left to watch its remnant mockingly slowly fall to the ground
and the SUICIDE dogtags flap across your screen. They're why you have to always
be aware of your surroundings when in the air. Especially in a helo, which is
(presumably) flying close to the ground.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
[1.03] Chase camera

Finally, there's the chase camera, accessed by pressing C from any seat in any
vehicle. The chase camera gives you a third person view of the situation,
giving better situational awareness at the expense of making it difficult to
see where exactly the guns are pointed. The chase camera is useful on ground
vehicles for maneuvering, as you can clearly see any obstacles that you are
going to crash into and waste time dislodging from. Tanks use when idling
on a dangerous point; for instance, capping an enemy flag. Just because you
don't see anyone doesn't mean there's no one there, and the chase camera can
spot rockets hitting you from directions other than the one you are pointing
your gun.

On transport helos, you don't have a weapon anyway, the weapons are mounted
on the side, and the helo's bulk can make it difficult to avoid obstancles;
it's recommended to keep the chase camera on most of the time, as this will
allow you to keep the gun pointed in the right direction most of the time. Jets
use it in dogfights, as it gives a better view of manuvering enemies. Finally,
all air vehicles can use it when landing, as it shows you where you can tuck
your rotor to avoid hitting anything (and when capping points too, but that's
not really recommended).

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
[1.04] Vehicle classes

A basic view of the vehicles; their specifics and more about their unlocks can
be found elsewhere.

Light jeeps (DPV, Growler ITV, VDV)
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Driver: Nothing
Passenger: .50 machine gun (either KORD or M2 Browning, by faction)
Passenger 2: Their own weapons, fired from a sitting position

These are the most lightly armored and most easily destroyed vehicles in the
game, but also the swiftest, able to traverse ground at breakneck speed and
make jumps that no other vehicle can attempt. They're also hard to hit for
tanks, which is a blessing, as a single hit is a death hail. All seats are
open; you can be killed by gunfire or a good sniper.

Differences:
The Desert Patrol Vehicle, which only appears on B2K maps, has more limited
gunner movement, as it is not able to swivel 360 degrees.

Armored jeeps (HUMVEE, GAZ-3937 Vodnik)
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Driver: Nothing
Passenger: .50 machine gun (either KORD or M2 Browning, by faction)
Passenger 2 and 3: Nothing

HUMVEEs and GAZ-3937s are utility jeeps that sacrifice light jeeps' speed for
a bit more armor and a better HUD. They mount the same weapon, but the gunner
is far better protected and has a dedicated remote-gunner HUD, making this the
lightest vehicle to have such an interface. All passengers are better
protected, but the windows are not immune to small arms fire, and people may
kill you through the windshield wipers; rockets do the same amount of damage,
but as everyone is inside, they will not deal direct damage to the occupants,
allowing you to bail. On the other hand they are less maneuverable, slower and
not able to turn as fast or skid around nearly as much. The GAZ has one
additional ability - it is amphibious, and is in fact the fastest such land-
water vehicle in the game.

Differences:
GAZ is amphibious, HUMVEE isn't, and the HUMVEE is somewhat smaller.

Skid Loader
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Driver: Nothing
Passenger 1 and 2: Their weapons

Um. This. The Skid Loader is a bit of an easter egg, it's a dead slow little
bulldozer that you can't see anything out of, best driven in the third person,
and only when you don't feel like walking. It has no offensive capacities, but
if you get a roadkill with it, you get an achievement. Not really a serious
vehicle.

Infantry Fighting Vehicles (LAV-25, BMP-2M, BTR-90)
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Driver: Autocannon (default) + ATGM, Guided Missile, APFSDS-T, Coaxial LMG
        (with Weapon Specialties)
Passenger: .50 machine gun (either KORD or M2 Browning, by faction)
Passenger 2 and 3: LMGs mounted on the sides

The IFV is just a fancy name for a light tank. It's less armored then the
Main Battle Tanks, so it definitely will not be winning fair fights against
one. It's less powerful then a MBT, but it deals more easily with infantry
thanks to its five-shot, not one shot, cannon. All three are amphibious.

Amphibious armored personal carrier (AAV-7A1 AMTRAC)
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Driver: Nothing
Passenger: Mk19 grenade launcher, .50 Browning machine gun
Passengers 2-5: Nothing

The AMTRAC is a strange construct. It acts a bit like an IFV - it has about as
much armor - but it isn't one, and can't use their specializations. It has a
grenade launcher rather then an autocannon, and can sit an unholy amount of
players. The one important thing about it is that it is a sort of mobile base;
anyone can spawn in it, even if they are not in the same squad as the driver.
As it appears on many Rush maps, the driver of the vehicle is faced with
pushing it as far as he dare go - the gunner can defend against infantry, but
enemy tanks will blow it to smitherines.

Anti-aircraft vehicles (LAV-AD, 9K22 Tunguska-M)
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Driver: Single (LAV) or dual (Tunguska) miniguns (default), + Anti-Air Missile
        (Weapon Specialization)

These two vehicles tear through aircraft like nothing else in the game. As
dedicated anti-air units, they are best used parked in a relatively open area
of the map, firing away at things that fly by. Both jets and helicopters suffer
from its guns, but helicopters are more vulnerable to its minigun(s), and jets
to the AA missiles. Although they are somewhat rare, AA guns are the best
counter in the gun against air vehicles. They can also damage infantry as
their guns are great suppressants and will take them down in a few shots:
there was a terrible patch a while ago that nerfed its anti-infantry capacity,
but it was revoked back to status quo thankfully quickly. It's really quite a
bit better then a tank's cannon in this regard, but cannot defeat any other
kind of tank in a fair fight - best to make like the roadrunner and foot it.

Differences:
The LAV-AD mounts a single gun while the Tunguska-M mounts dual ones.
Regardless their rate of fire, damage, and accuracy is the same, as the Russian
shorter barrels fire at half the speed of the LAV's.

Main Battle Tanks (M1 Abrams and T-90)
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Driver: Smoothbore cannon (default), + Coaxial LMG, Coaxial HMG, or Guided
        Shell (Weapon Specializations)
Passenger: .50 cal Machine Gun
Commander in the Vehicle (CITV): Laser Designator

The MBT is offensive bread and butter. It has the most health of any vehicle,
a smoothbore cannon that can tear buildings to shreds, and a secondary machine
gun for sole foes. The main problem with the MBT is that it has difficulty
dealing with lone engineers peppering you with shots from an unknown direction,
or hitting you with guided missiles from afar. For that reason tanks work best
when coordinated with boots on the ground. Tanks defeat anything on the ground
one-to-one, but tend to lose to good helicopter pilots and good jet pilots
mounting rocket pods (but do see canister shot).

Differences:
First of all are the HUDs, with the Russian one tinted red and the American one
tinted green; this isn't an advantage to either party, as the Russian one gets
hazy more easily and the American one makes grassy areas harder to see. The
aiming reticules on the T-90 are, in my opinion, better, as they have mil marks
for gaging distance - the one time chevrons are actually useful. Other then
that the Abrams is smoother-skinned and harder to spot, while the T-90 is a
smaller target, an advantage in avoiding missiles and other tanks' shot.

Scout Helicopters (AH-6 Little Bird and Z-11W)
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Driver: Twin gun pods (default), + Heat Seekers or Guided Missiles (Weapon
        Specializations)
Passenger 1 and 2: Their weapons fired out of the side
Passenger 3: Nothing

This is the lightest craft that can take flight. Scout Helicopters are light
helicopters that mount great maneuverability and twin minigun gun pods. They rip
through infantry and light armor, and can pose a significant threat to air
vehicles as well, but can do little against heavily armored vehicles. They're
very potent if used right, but using them right is difficult because they're
rare, and the unlocks take a long time get to ECM/Below Radar.

Differences:
Despite differences in appearance the two are functionally identical.

Attack Helicopters (Mi-28 Havok and AH-1Z Viper)
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Driver: 12 unguided rockets (default), + Heat Seekers, Guided Rockets (Weapon
        Specalizations)
Gunner: 30 round heavy autocannon (default), + Guided Missile, TV Missiles
        (Weapon Specializations)

Attack Helicopters are agile beats that can beat Main Battle Tanks to a pulp
if let at them unmolested. The combined strength of the pilot's rocket pods
and the gunner's autocannon deal great damage to just about everything, from
tanks to infantry, and it can traverse the battlefield with speed. Helicopters
can be equipped to deal with next to everything.

Differences:
The Mi-28 used to be hands-down horrible, dubbed "the flying tank" for its
slowness relative to the AH-1Z but without any compensation in terms of actual
additional armor. They've since been patched to identical status, which is a
pity in my mind: there was room for filling out that slow, more highly-armored
role and adding a bit of diversity wouldn't have hurt.

The Mi-28 does, however, have three wheels where the AH-1Z has skids; this
makes landing easier, as you don't have to worry about banging your rotor into
the pavement, at least not as much. It's worth noting that irl, the Mi-28
has insanely and highly bullet-resistant window panes that would block
even helicopter cannon shot from hurting the pilots. Can you tell I'm
dissapointed in the devs' blandness?

Transport Helicopters (Ka-60 Kasatka, UH-1Y Venom)
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Driver: Nothing
Passengers 1 and 2: Side-mounted miniguns
Passengers 3 and 4: Their weapons fired from the side

Transport helicopters are just that, transport helicopters. They lack a spec
tree, and the pilot has two tasks, flying the thing and deploying automatically
packaged-in IR flares when needed. Passengers 1 and 2 fire the weapons;
although one can have both fire at once, it's generally best to have only one
side facing the enemy, and a single person can alternate seats to make that
happen. Their main purpose really is what it reads on the tin, as a transport
chopper; it can get the most people somewhere relatively quickly, and with good
evasion, stay in the air for people to spawn in and drop out of as needed. Like
the AMTRACK above, it acts as a mobile spawning station on the maps in which it
occurs.

Differences:
Practically none.

Jets (F/A-18 Super Hornet and Su-35BM Flanker-E)
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Pilot: 20 millimeter cannon (default), Heat Seekers, Rocket Pods, Guided
       Missiles (Weapon Specializations)

Jets are the most difficult thing in Battlefield to fly effectively, and also
one of the most difficult to shoot down. They move fast, making random hits
with unaimed rockets and so forth next to impossible (although I once destroyed
one with a lucky cannon shot). When they fly low they have enough of a frame to
be hurt by machine guns and the like, so take this into account. They rule the
skies with superb anti-air abilities and enough speed to flee from anyone with
a heat-seeking missile launcher gunning for them. These air superiority
fighters might take damage from a MBT secondary gun or other similar caliber
things, but they can only really be shot down consistently by other jets and
Mobile AA Guns. They can be equipped for pretty much any role - depending on
specializations this can be ground attack, air superiority, or multipurpose.

Differences:
Practically none.

Ground attack aircraft (A-10 Thunderbolt and Su-25TM Frogfoot)
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Pilot: heavy nose-mounted cannon (default), Heat Seekers, Rocket Pods, Guided
       Missiles (Weapon Specializations)

Ground attack aircraft are somewhat apocryptical, something you can see in the
dial tones they have for missile lock indicators (both are modernized versions
of crafts designed and deployed in 70s, after all). They are bigger, slower,
bulkier, and lack an afterburner. Nonetheless they make up for it with very
large, very strong cannons, enough to total tanks where a regular jet could
only disable it (with help from rockets of course). They appear exclusively in
Rush modes; jets appear exclusively in Conquest modes.

Differences:
Practically none.

VSTOL jet (F-35)
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Pilot: 20 millimeter cannon (default), Heat Seekers, Rocket Pods, Guided
       Missiles (Weapon Specializations)

Sole occupant of this category is the F-35, a short take off and landing plane
that can act like a helicopter by going into hover mode. This is dangerous and
not recommended if you do not have air superiority and serious altitude, but
translates into a much meaner bite, as the jet can "sit" on a target much like
an attack helicopter, taking out a tank without having to make another pass
back on it after disabling, as a jet often has to resort to. Flying a VSTOL jet
is a hard skill to learn; it can turn on a dime, but is finecky and slow, and
has a tendancy to slide into VSTOL mode during aggressive aerial manuveering,
which is a death kneel. Used to be horrible against the Su-25, but patches
seem to have made it a better match - slower, yes, but with a smaller turn
radius, if you can keep from stalling out into VSTOL.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
[1.05] Emplaced weapons

In addition to all the mobile weapons, there are a few emplaced weapons
scattered around the map, mostly in each side's bases or near flags. They
generally pack a punch, but being immobile are not nearly as useful as
vehicles. Emplaced weapons also have no specialization trees, although they
have Zoom Optics enabled by default. They're extremely resistant to
damage, so taking one down is far easier by shooting the gunner (if you must,
a tank shot will do it - a good idea when idling on a hostile point). Most
players don't know this, but emplaced weapons can be damaged, destroyed, and
repaired, in the same manner and with the same respawn times as with regular
vehicles.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Emplaced AA Gun (Centurian C-RAM and PANTSIR-S1)

These are basically Mobile AA guns set in place. You can't get a missile
launcher like in the AA vehicles, but they do have zoom optics, which helps a
teeny bit. Because these vehicles only appear at your base, they're only really
effective against Jets or Helicopters that happen to fly by or are camping your
base - an effective team doesn't need them. A lot of time people use them while
they wait for tanks or helicopters to spawn. These guns have about as much
health as a main battle tank, and Air Radar by default.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Stationary AT Missile (BGM-71 TOW and (9M133 Kornet)

Stationary AT platforms that launch strong, slow moving, optically guided AT
shots. They go slow, have a terrible turn radius, and reload too slow to stand
off a tank or hit a helicopter, but every bit helps, and shooting it for a hit
and then running away is basically a free shot on an enemy tank. Because the
missiles are laser guided, you have to have clear line of sight - you can't
fire through a wall, for instance. These weapons have as much health as a jeep.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
[1.06] The Engineer

The engineer is the heart and soul of vehicular warfare. The engineer is one of
the four classes in the game, and is the one that is dedicated to vehicles. In
this sense the Engineer is given man-portal rocket launchers, anti-tank mines,
EOD bots, and the repair tool, making an engineer a vital passenger and driver
in any vehicle, as well as the first defense against enemy vehicles. If you
plan to man the guns, you need to be an engineer.

The specifics of destroying vehicles are covered in a separate section in this
guide, which is where launchers, AT Mines, C4 (a Support tool), and SOFLAM (a
Recon tool) is covered. Repairing mechanics is covered in a section a few above
this one. Specific strategies for using engineers is covered in each vehicle's
section.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
[1.07] Specializations

Several of the vehicle categories have their own specializations: Scout
Helicopters, Attack Helicopters, Jets, Main Battle Tanks, Infantry Fighting
Vehicles, and AA Tanks. Specializations give your vehicle extra capacities in
three categories.

Patches have added names to the various specialization classes, but these vary
between vehicles, because specializations vary between vehicles. The first
and most important are weapons. These are a secondary weapon to complement
your primary armament, and what they are exactly depends on the vehicle in
question, and include things like Rocket Pods and Canister Shot. The second
are passive enhancements: things like Stealth and Laser Designator. The third
are  active enhancements: mainly countermeasures. The specifics of using them
is discussed in their respective sections.

Note that you start the game with access only to the first vehicle
specialization, their basic countermeasure, either Smoke or Flares. In the past
even these were not available, which was stupid: try being a beginner in a jet
without Flares.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
[1.08] Missile lock indicators

When you are aquirred by a lock-on missile a small variety of sounds will play
to tell you which state of lock on they are in. These occur in all armored
vehicles; it is critically absent in jeeps and armored jeeps, which make
Javelins extremely dangerous to these vehicle classes.

A beeping noise and a flashing "Lock" means that they are trying to acquire you
for a missile lock. If you move out of range or behind something it will break
the lock. Stealth will increase the time it takes for the lock to aquirre.
Below Radar allows you to avoid Heat Seeker lock when flying low.

A solid tone and a solid "Lock" plays when the enemy can fire a guided
missile. It does not tell you how far away the missile is, only that it he has
lock. It can be avoided by putting something between you and the missile, or
by deploying Flares, Smoke, or ECM (although the latter is more complicated).
If it is a laser-guided lock-on, the sound will not go away, and you know it is
a laser guided weapon and you need to haul ass asap behind cover to break
designation.

An urgent beeping noise on top of a solid tone tells you that the missile is
away and heading for you. Generally it will impact between a couple of seconds
to ten seconds (depending on your speed), although it may be longer or
shorter. This is the best time to deploy countermeasures, but if you do so too
late, it will still hit you: don't stall.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
[2] Specific controls
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
[2.01] Driving: Boats, Light Vehicles, IFVs, MBTs, and Mobile AA Guns

Ground vehicles have the same controls, and these are pretty much standard.
Pressing A or D turns you left or right, W guns the motor, S applies the brakes
or puts you in reverse. Using the mouse you can traverse your current weapon;
if you have more then one, pressing 2 activates the second weapon. How
dexterous your weapon is depends on the vehicle. On tanks and armored jeeps,
you can move your turret up to about 60 degrees vertically, but cannot
fire at anything immediately below you; this last restriction holds for most
everything, and makes . On the AA cannons, you have full unrestricted motion
all vertical and horizontal directions.

Pressing X deploys countermeasures, especially IR Smoke. Pressing Shift in any
land vehicle will gun the engine, giving speed at the cost of maneuverability.
Different vehicles deal differently with obstacles; given enough speed anything
can crash through a fence, but only a heavy vehicle can successfuly crash
through a building. Slamming anything hard will damage your vehicle, but is
next to impossible in a tank, except by ramming things like the giant oil
towers on Kharg Island.

Remember that you can swap seats into an empty one with the F keys.

And finally, right clicking will allow you to zoom or switch to thermo magic if
you have it available.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
[2.02] Piloting: Helicopters

Basics
......

Piloting helicopters is much harder than driving vehicles because moving in
three dimensions is harder than in two - driving involves moving forwards and
backwards and turning, but piloting involves pitch, roll, and altitude in
addition to forward movement and yaw (sideways motion). It takes a few tries to
figure out how to pilot a chopper, and then some more to figure out how to land
the damn thing without crashing into a tree or smashing into the ground.

W - Increase altitude
S - Decrease altitude
A - Yaw left
D - Yaw right
(Stick One on Controllers)

Up Key - Pitch forward
Down Key - Pitch back
Left Key - Roll left
Right Key - Roll right
(Stick Two on Controllers)

There are two ways to pilot helicopters and jets, with the keyboard and with
the WSAD part of the keyboard and the mouse for roll/yaw. The keyboard may be
a little harder to learn, but it has the advantage of never running out of
space; that is, with a mouse there are going to be situations where you're
making a hard turn and simply run out of desk room, plowing your mouse into
your keyboard or whatever else is on the table. The addition of a separate
vehicle sensitivity partially mitigates the problem, but the issue of desk
space is still there. This is especially important on helicopters, and I
encourage keyboard use. (if you're on a controller, you can ignore this)

The first part of helicopter flight is the W and S keys. W moves you up, S
moves you down. Helicopters have a very high flight ceiling, but it's there;
at high altitudes the low density of the air will decrease maneuverability and
speed.

Now, you need to start moving forward. Airspeed is controlled by a combination
of pitch, that is, how far you chopper is leaning forwards or backwards, and
the W/S keys, because when angled in a direction "up" and "down" becomes
throttle forward and throttle back. To gain airspeed, hold the Up key, and your
chopper will lean forward (the front will shift down relative to the horizon)
and the rotors will pull you forward. To reduce airspeed, pull back (Down Key),
and your helicopter will lean up (above the horizon) and slow you down. To
level out angle the chopper to 0 degrees; this is the best and most stable
position for your gunner.

The bar and pitch markers are helpful in this regard, allowing you figure where
you are relative to the horizon, which becomes important when you're doing
aerobatics at high altitude - mostly when firing Heat Seekers at jets above
you, which can send you plummeting backwards (don't try it without serious
altitude).

Simple turning is controlled by the A and D keys. Pressing them turns you left
or right, respectively. Turning takes a little bit of time, and is not that
fast.

Your HUD
........

Pilots and Gunners have separate HUDs. For the most part, however, the HUD is
not terribly useful, as you can tell almost everything more easily through
sight, controls, and sound. HUDs for Scout Helicopters are similar but
simpler, and those for transport helos are even simpler. Advanced pilots only
ever really need the gunner sight box, which tells you where your gunnner is
looking relative to you-for instance, if he's shooting at something you don't
see.

Aiming Reticule - this is the central piece of your HUD, the marker that shows
where you are aiming. The HUD for the Heat Seekers is simply a large circle
with a dot to show where the missiles go. The HUD for the regular rockets is
a bit more complex, with a central marker and a I-shaped predictive marker,
which shows approximately where the rockets with actually go, an important
feature when moving but one that is, unfortunately, not very accurate.

Positional controls - these are a set of three HUD elements that together tells
you the exact pitch, yaw, and turning direction of your aircraft. The first
element is a tracking tread-like up-down thing in the center, a series of lines
with numbers on the side that adjusts accordingly whenever you pitch the
aircraft up or down, as well as adjusting left or right with yaw; this is your
pitch indicator. Above this is a curved line representing yaw, which is
obviously your yaw indicator. The final element is at the top center, a
straight tracking line that shows your horizontal direction (0 is the
position in which the vehicle spawned).

Countermeasure Status - top left corner, this tells you when your
countermeasures (Extinguisher, ECM, Flares) are reloading (flashing Wait) or
ready (solid Ready).

Airspeed Indicator - just below countermeasures, measures how fast you are
moving through the air.

Torque Indicator - indicates the amount of power going through your helo
blades. If this gets too low, you are close to stalling and it will flash red,
and you need to apply power (W) to stop yourself from falling. After you stop
pumping the rotors, it takes a second or so to get back to power.

Weapon Status - located near the bottom center, tells you when weapons are
ready to fire or reloading, but the regular HUD element in the bottom right
is probably more useful in this regard.

Side Indicator - A little circle and two fenceposts that acts a lot like the
I-Beam part of the aiming reticule, telling you offset. Mostly superseded by
the actual I, though.

Gunner Sight - Shows you where you gunner is located, very useful for
coordinating fire.

Altitude Control - top right numbers, left of the bar, showing your height
above sea level.

Vertical Speed Control - the bar on the right side that indicates how fast you
are rising and falling.

Altitude Meter - another box that shows altitude, but one that flashes when
you are very low, and tells you when you are Below Radar. Uses a different
measure from the other control.

Advanced controls
.................

Turning can be accelerated by the most complex of the control surfaces, roll.
This is when your heli pitches left (Left Key) or right (Right Key). This not
only accelerates turning with A and D, but also increases airspeed in that
direction, causing you to head left or right without moving forward. Roll is
esential to good helicopter piloting, and fastest movements use all three
controls together.

When you are far over the battlefield, you can do manuveers that would put your
rotor into a ditch closer to the ground. One important fact to remember is that
pitching forward hard will actually cause you to lose altitude even if you press
W; thus the fastest a chopper can go is directly down from high altitude. Thus
it is useful to pitch your chopper down all the way and level out closer to
the ground, either to get down for a ground attack, or to escape a pursuing
bogie, or to get down so you can land for repairs. This has the advantage of
making it look as though your chopper is blown, so people might forget to
target you with their launchers, a distinct advantage. Remember: the harder you
are going down the longer it will take you to pitch out of the controlled fall
when you are meeting the ground.

When flying low be extra careful to avoid buildings, stuff like high poles that
will hit your chopper for damage and send you off-hilter, potentially crashing.

An advanced technique when you know you are being laser designated and shot at
is to get to the ground and then fly haphazordously, rolling from side to side
if possible; if the missile misses it will try to curve around under you and
hit you anyway, but at that low altitude it will hit the ground and explode
instead.

Landing
.......

Landing a helicopter is a fairly complicated proceedure. The idea is to find a
nice, flat surface, pitch backwards to cut airspeed, and then hit terra firma.
In combat, this tends to consists of pitching down and hard away from
aggressors, settling behind a hill, and getting out to repair. The chase camera
is extremely useful when landing, as it gives a view of anything that your tail
rotor might hit. The Havok is easier to land than the Apache, thanks to its
three-wheel construction. Scout Helicopters can land ANYWHERE. No, really.

Dangers: pitching backwards into the ground will damage the tail rotor.
Hitting the ground too hard will damage the body. Landing at too high a speed
will flip the helo bottom-up, causing it to explode. Remember: the rougher the
landing, the more damage your chopper will take, and the higher the
probability you'll skid off and become airboure again.

A good tutorial series is available on YouTube, here is one part:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=iv&annotation_id=annotation_688803
&src_vid=wUYXGBZ_Jvk&v=ZNx-7Llzec0

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
[2.03] Piloting: Jets

Jets are the most difficult things in the game to pilot, because flying around
at high velocity makes it difficult to keep track of what is going on, and
gives you limited periods in which to hit targets. The basics follow:

W - accelerate
S - Brake
A - Turn left
D - Turn right
Up Key - Pitch down
Down Key - Pitch up
Left Key - Yaw left
Right Key - Yaw right

Taking off is simple. Just keep going forward until you can get off the ground
by using the flaps, or else take off by sheer force. The jet is extremely
vulnerable while on the ground, but this is mitagated by its position way in
the back of your base. Baseraping is universially looked down upon, and often a
bannable offence. You only need about half the runway to take off, using the
afterburner.

The jet is a lot like a helicopter when it comes to the basics; the main
difference is that the helicopter has to pitch forward to accelerate, while the
jet maintains a high level of speed by moving and must maintain that speed in
order to avoid crashing. Therefore the basic controls are the same as in
the helicopter.

One big difference is that turning directions reverses the controls in degrees,
as your plane turns via flaps. Flying upside down, all of your controls are
reversed, and in between your controls will change with your yaw. It's a bit
difficult to get used to, as you will try to pitch up and instead pitch
downwards towards the ground. Now for some peripheral controls that are
important:

C - Toogle chase camera
Shift - Afterburner
S - Brake
Hold Right Mouse Button - Free look

Jets use the chase camera far more then any other vehicle class. It gives you
a greater view of what's going on around the vehicle, essential in dogfights
where you have to stick on his tail in heavy evasive manuveers while not
letting him out of your sight. It's much better then the cramped cockpit in
this regard, but on the downside it's impossible to tell where your bullets
are going - once you aquire your target, go to cockpit.

Shift is the afterburner, and activating it speeds your vehicle up while
lowering your maneuverability. This is useful for getting away. S is the brake,
which decreases airspeed as needed before a landing, in making tight turns, and
to give you more time to attack when assaulting a vehicle on the ground.

Free look is used for spotting vehicles on the ground to attack. Put your
aircraft in a vertical path, and then hold the right mouse button and spot any
tanks or whatnot that you see. Then swoop back down and use your weapons to
assault whatever's on the ground.

Dogfighting is all about getting and keep view of the other guy, and if you
have someone on your 6, executing tight turns to throw them off. The fastest
turn can be performed by braking into a banking turn, maintaining a certain
magic number in terms of airspeed as best as you can. Never move perfectly
straight - if you must flee in a uniform direction, consequitevly loop
cokscrews to make yourself hard to hit.

Another manuveer to know is the cartwheel. Pitch your vehicle up, push
afterburner, and once your speed is getting down to a very low level, pull out
and shoot back down, or level out for a high flight path. This manuveer is
useful for dogfighting, but its main use is to avoid missile launchers on the
ground; flying that high puts you out of their maximum range and keeps you
from getting shot down, giving you time to recharge EMC or Flares as needed,
and determine what's shooting at you if possible.

The slower your speed and the higher the altitude, the more sluggish your
movements (because of loss of air pressure on your flaps first and lower air
density second). If you get too slow or too high, your plane will stall out;
meaning, your plane will lose all control and start plummeting back to the
ground. This is dangerous, making you an easy target, and must be countered by
pushing your nose down and getting air circulating around your flaps again.
Sometimes people purposefully stall out at high altitudes to avoid enemy
missiles.

Remember not to overcommit on targets; you need to pull out and if you spend
too much time disabling a tank you will end up nose-first in the ground.

Landing planes is also difficult, because it requires a long straight segment
free of too many bumps, and that's not terribly easy on most maps. You do have
the advantage of being able to land in out-of-bound areas, however, some of
which are straight and all of which are difficult to hit from within the map.
Most of the time, however, you can only angle it over someplace useful and
parachute down.

The actual procedure is fairly easy once you learn how to do it. Approach the
runway while braking a bit, but not too much or you will stall. Dip down and
almost level out as you get close; the landing gear will open automatically.
Then pitch your plane down a teeny bit and make contact with the ground; once
you have, hit and hold the brakes to slow down and eventually stop. From here
you can make repairs (a plane can be repaired fully most of the time within the
10 second out of bound window; just go back in and out again if you need more
time) and then take off anew.

A more difficult landing manuveer is to use skid to your advantage by flapping
left or right as you land; this will push your plane right or left as you
land, increasing friction and economizing landing space if successful.

VSTOL controls
..............

The F-35 has the ability to perform STOL (Short Takeoff and Landing) and VTOL
(Vertical Takeoff and Landing). To go into hover mode, you have to be at a
slow enough airspeed (or stationary on a surface), and then hold down the
brake. Holding onto the brake you can then press W to push yourself upwards and
the other keys to position yourself in the air, moving like a chopper without
vertical control.

The problem with hovering is that it takes a few seconds to enter and a few
seconds to leave, and if you are going too slow in the air and are braking, you
will enter hover mode, so you have to find the fine line between flying and
hovering when making sharp turns, especially since switching back out of VSTOL
mode takes a few seconds.

VSTOL is a powerful tool when properly used.

It does make landing and repairing practically possible, however, especially on
the crowded maps (Wake Island and Gulf of Oman) where the F-35 appears.

[3] Specific strategies
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
[3.01] Light vehicles

Light vehicles are distinctly light. They are most useful for capturing flags
or making lightning runs on the MCOM; fill up the vehicle, avoid enemy armor
and run right into the flag. Dismount and stack up against its defenders;
four times out of five they will not spawn fast enough or push back hard
enough to keep you from neutralizing and then capping the flag.

Another light vehicle strat is C4 car bombing. Stap the car down with
C4, find an enemy armor target, flank it, and then point your vehicle on it
and dismount. Once the vehicle hits the enemy tank, blow the C4 to do lethal
damage against the enemy tank. This is particularly hilarious (and effective)
when executed against ignorant AA vehicles.

Finally, light vehicles are quite underappreciated as a gun platform. They're
indiscriminate and ignorable, and you can park it somewhere shady, man the
gun, and mow people down. The .50 cal is no worse then the tank gunner's
weapon, but you are very exposed, especially to snipers. That being said,
be scared of jets and helicopters - be very scared.

Post-patch, light vehicles now have an annoying little horn that's fun to
spam with and annoy your teammates with. Just press and hold down on the Left
Mouse Button to use it. It's good for telling people to get in.

Videos:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=33KLukCHH2E - Jihadests.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
[3.02] Main Battle Tanks

Main Battle Tanks pack the biggest gun in the game, a massive cannon that
easily deals with other vehicles and infantry, if you can hit them. There's a
lot of strategy to using an MBT, all depending on your specialization choices;
this section will explore them in detail.

Strategic use
.............

Tanks may be the most heavily armored vehicles on the battlefield, but they
are still vulnerable to regular old infantry. C4 and rocket launchers are
reason enough not to do the stupidest thing you can do with a tank - gun it
right into enemy presence. That is just asking to run over a mine, or get hit
with rockets, or get planted down with C4 (or as happens rather more often
these days, be run through by a jihadest jeep).

Tanks are best used for force projection and for area control and denial,
especially against other tanks and other ground-based foes. As kings of
vehicular warfare, their number one purpose should be shooting at and
destroying enemy armored assets; if an enemy tank is making moves at your
team within your purview, you should be maneuvering towards a firing position
on that tank. If you hold a valuable point and know that enemy armor and
infantry will be streaming your way, you should be defending your point. If
friendlies are advancing along a road or onto a point, you should be advancing
right along with them.

That being said, you must be extremely careful not to stay in one place for too
long (especially without Proximity Scan), and like any other vehicle in the
game, work with boots on the ground as far as possible. While tanks are
passable at capturing points or striking out on long-winded solo romps, a
single well-positioned engineer armed with an unguided rocket launcher is
enough to force you away from a position, and two or more such engineers lying
in ambush is lethal. Tanks are most effective coordinating with friendly
infantry which can force away your two biggest threats - helicopters and jets
raining down damage from above, and well-positioned engineers firing rockets
at your flanks - while you can force away their biggest threat - enemy armor.
The best way to deploy is along a road or other clear area, with supporting
infantry on both sides. That way, all your enemies are, presumably, in front of
you, where your heavier armor and your gun is. This is EXTREMELY important in
Rush mode.

You shouldn't fear laser designation because smoke is more or less a 100%
counter, although given people actively targeting you once you're locked, you
will be forced back until you or someone else is able to destroy whatever's
locking onto you. SOFLAM is extremely difficult to hit with a tank (with any
weapon, actually, but especially with a tank gun) and is extremely annoying,
but from close enough range can be locked onto and easily destroyed by a Guided
Missile or Javelin.

Tactical use
............

Tanks deal excellent damage against buildings, which means that you can use
them to blow out enemy cover and expose them to friendly fire, or even
collapse the buildings. Oftentime soldiers will hide behind buildings,
leaving you to blow them out into the open. When capturing otherwise moving
through points nearer to your base than to your enemies', it's helpful to blow
out as much cover as possible; the more open an area, the more effective your
armor is (and the harder a point is to cap on foot), and at a point more
forward to your base than to your enemies' less cover is advantageous to your
team.

There are a few things to look out for in a tank. The first is AT Mines. Mines
are easily spotted and destroyed on paved roads, but they are difficult to see
clearly on unpaved dirt roads, and most especially in the shady dirt wells left
behind when tank shots and rocket launchers impact them. You should get into
the habit of instinctively checking and spot-clearing the ground in front of
you for mines, because if they don't kill you they will instantly disable you,
forcing you to get out to repair, which means near-death in combat situations.

Leaving the tank while out in the open is dangerous, but sometimes necessary
if you are on fire and need immediate repairs. It's a lot easier if you have
a gunner; otherwise someone might steal your tank. A gunner in the tank can
suppress enemy AT fire as you repair, and worst come to worst will prevent them
from hijacking it, forcing them to blow it up instead. When you must come out
to repair, remember: smoke is your best friend. It obscures you from enemy
fire, making it vastly more difficult for them to take you out.

When engaging enemies, try to move in and out of cover. If you are in front of
a building for example, move forward so you can see them, hit them, and then
backpedal back to cover. This will minimize the time they have to try and hit
you. IR Smoke de-spots you in addition to hiding your frame; executed properly
this is very useful for backpedaling from unguided and guided rocket shots
alike. If you are taking hits and don't know where it's coming from, it's time
to backpedal and assess the situation.

Remember to call out any enemy vehicles you see, especially other tanks! This
ticks off your teammates to the enemy armor, and they act accordingly. This is
also relevant to your secondary gunner, who, if they have not noticed the
target yet, will certainly start firing on them once you mark the target.

It's important to remember that tank shots fall away over distance. You can
use the tic marks below the aiming reticule to compensate for gravity; figure
where you need to shoot, remember what number it was, and if you miss, adjust
above or below that tic to zero in on the target. Long-distance engagements
often come down to, who zeroed in on the other first.

Never, ever abandon a tank to the enemy. One of their engineers will have a
swell time running up to it, backpedaling, repairing it, and then using it
against your team; if it is critically damaged, bail before the last
shot hits, if possible. Don't tarry too long, however; to survive the ensuing
explosion you need to put a bit of disance between you and your tank before
it explodes.

The best possible use of a tank is a whole tank crew organizing their
specializations to give the most benefit to a tank. Basically you want to
avoid stacking things. If you are the gunner or CITV, use perks that carry over
to those seats as well. In particular the CITV can use Proximity Scan, and if
you are using the seat the driver should equip Guided Shells.

If you see an enemy jeep heading for you, it's very likely laden down with
C4. Make blowing it up your first priority - if that jeep makes contact
and they get to blow the switch, you'll get shot to kingdom come. You can
tell whether or not a jeep is C4-laden by its minimap icon once spotted- if it
is, it will be covered in little C4 circles.

Tank-on-tank warfare
....................

The biggest thing that tanks fear is other tanks (well, besides Stationary
AT guns). Tanks should prioritize fighting other tanks. In an even battle,
the tank that wins is always the one that lands the first successful shot.
Of course most times it's not an even battle - one side gets the jump on the
other, one side has an engineer repairing, one side is hiding behind a sand
dune, etc. If you have a machine gunner inside and there are no choppers or
other enemies immediately present, it would be smart of him to pop out, grab
a launcher and starting hitting the enemy tank for damage, or to repair your
own.

The tic marks on the T90 are useful for zeroing in on bullet drop; they're
absent on the M1 Abrams, but you can do just as well ballparking it without
the guide, since your muzzle does not shift significantly between shots.
It's important to keep track of where your shots are landing, and adjust
accordingly. In tank-on-tank battles, the result often comes down to who shot
first. Additionally, try to keep your front faced towards the enemy. Your armor
is double there, and you can take twice as many hits in the front compared to
the sides or back. Conversly, when engaging enemy armor aim for their sides or
their back. The damage tank shots do depends on the angle of incidence to the
impact area - a straight-on shot to the side of an enemy tank will do about
twice as much damage as a full forward hit, and this goes all the way down to
equivalent damage. Still, even a little bit off the top can help.

If you are taking heat from the enemy tank at a distance and are not able to
return damage (as in, they've zeroed out the bullet drop and you haven't yet),
you need to move to cover and try again. If you are losing the battle, try to
get one last shot in if possible and then bail. Exploded tanks make good cover
while they last, and you can pull out your launcher (if you're an engineer of
course) and try to destroy the enemy on the ground.

Key factors in a tank battle:
* Who has infantry support?
* Have you or he taken any damage yet?
* Does he have you zeroed in? Do you have him zeroed in?
* Do you or he have a friendly engineer for repairs/assistance?
* Do you or he have some combination of IR Flares and Guided Shells?
* Do you or he have Autoloader?

If the enemy tank isn't shooting you and you get a lock-on-warning, that
likely means he's using Guided Shells, and woe is you if you don't have IR
Smoke and can't run away. If you do, and he's close, punch X as soon as he
gets a solid bead, because at this distance an unguided shot will still hit
you. The same applies in reverse. Guided shells do about 50 damage to a tank,
so they are significant and make IR Smoke all the more attractive.  On the
other hand, successfully defending from one will have rendered the time he
took to lock onto you wasted.

This advice also applies to IFVs and AA guns. IFVs can do equal damage to you
as a MBT with good aim and wire-guided missiles, but suffer from a lack of
armor, so you still have a big advantage. Mobile AA platforms have a weak gun,
but it has far less bullet drop then cannon shots and is an absolute spamfest,
so they can be a bother at a distance. At close range and at a healthy level,
you will eat them for dinner.

If you bail out of a heavily damaged tank and he's damaged too, and you have
AT rockets, line up a shot with a rocket launcher for a good chance of a kill.

Tank-on-infantry warfare
........................

The problem with infantry is that they can sit on top of a rock and shoot AT
rockets at you. That's bad, because the cannon has difficult reaching the tops
of uphill places; if you think about it it's quite difficult to put a shot
onto the tip of a rock, because if you undershoot just a teeny bit you hit
below them, and overshoot a teeny bit and it flies over them. For this reason
enemy soldiers are best dealt with by a secondary LMG or HMG or Canister, your
gunner, if you have a gunner, or last-ditch scenario, getting out and shooting
them with your gun (this is not recommended as you may get shot by an unseen
foe and have your tank repossessed, which can be game-losing).

Proximity Scan helps GREATLY with dealing with infantry. It prevents them from
getting up close for a C4 plant, and often clearly marks out where that close
range bother with a AT launcher is, or at the very least eliminate that sector
from your considerations. It makes capping sparsly populated points practically
harmless.

Infantry like to hide behind things. Blow them up or suppress them with heavy
cannon fire, and your gunner can assist. And remember, if things get too hot
your best shot is to simply run away. This is especially true when trying to
cap a point; while tanks are good at and often end up capping points, if you
are sitting on one and the bar stops moving be on alert, because you are in the
sort of close-range high-cover environment that engineers and C4-toting support
class enemies love.

Speaking of C4-toting infantry. C4 is extremely lethal and three placed
blocks will blow you to kingdom come. You'll generally know when you get
planted down with C4 because a "Press R to pickup" command will appear on your
tank. Now you are in a conundrum; if you stay in the tank you'll get blown up,
and if you leave it they might get to steal it. This is where Proximity Scan
shines; you hardly need to worry if you have Proximity because they won't be
able to get close enough. And don't actually try to press R...

If you start taking AT hits and can't tell where they're coming from, retreat,
and take another angle if possible. If you are sitting on a point with lots of
cover and no targets, blow up cover to deny them safe places to shoot you from.

When capping points, be sure to blow up any stationary AT launchers the enemy
might use to fling missiles at you.

Oh and fun fact: it's hard to do, but yes, you *can* flip a tank upside down.
Amusingly, it's still able to rotate the gun and fire just fine.

Tank-on-helicopter warfare
........................

Helicopters are a problem for tanks. They move quickly, have enough health to
take a pummeling from your machine guns, and fly and attack at a high enough
angle that you'll have trouble, a lot of time, just aiming your cannon at them.
Nonetheless helicopters can be shot down. The best way is with Guided Shells;
helicopters are the best SOFLAM/CITV + Guided Shell targets in the game. A
single shell will blow the chopper right out of the sky. But the problem with
relying on Guided Shells is that most of the time your team simply lacks the
coordination to pull it off; when you don't have a CITV and there's no
well-placed SOFLAM being helpful, the specialization effectively becomes a
wasted slot, only really useful against enemy jeeps that aren't too threatening
in the first place.

The next best defense against enemy choppers are Canister Shells. Fired at
close range, a Canister Shell will disable a full health helicopter in one hit,
and two can destroy one entirely. Canister Shells are damaging and easy to hit
with, and when spammed at even distant helos, will heavily discourage them from
coming in over you for attack runs. The biggest problem is that it may well
just strafe backwards and attack you at range with Guided Rockets and TV
Missiles, but this opens the helo up to friendly air and anti-air assets that
should, presumably, handle the problem.

Failing that, you can try and hit it with cannon shots. No, that's not as
preposterous as it sounds; if you have good aim, you can hit a maneuvering
chopper with a tank shot out to medium-close range. If it's trying to make an
attack run on you and you see it, take careful aim and wait for it to get as
close as it can before shooting; cannon shots that impact will destroy the helo
in one hit.

Remote Gunner .50 fire and HMGs are generally less reliable against an enemy
chopper. They do damage, yes, but don't do it fast enough to have a real
effect, except the occassional lucky occupant headshot. The CITV is a good
helo deterrent as well - it may be useless against jets, but laser designation
spooks even the best of helicopters, even if you don't actually have Guided
Shells equipped (unless your team is completely hopeless).

Defensive maneuvering against enemy helos is difficult, but not impossible.
When you are taking damage from a helicopter on a straffing run (the most
common and, outside of hovering like an idiot, damaging manuveer) your
avoidance manuveer should be to gun the engine in his direction and force him
to at least partially overshoot you. And, finally: the only defense against TV
Missiles is surface cover. They're a real bitch, and after AA Tanks, you're the
second most common target.

Transport helicopters are easier to shoot down then Attack Helicopters. They
do far less damage to you, are larger targets, and move slower. If you manage
to put one in the side, all the better, as the explosion should kill everyone
in the passenger compartment. Note: as of now, a direct tank shot will no
longer instantly destroy a transport helo, only disable it; a tank shot and
then a canister shot WILL usually do the job, however.

You can more or less ignore Scout Helicopters; they do ignorable damage, and
have to get close to do it, too. Opportunistic little rotors, those.

Tank-on-jet warfare
...................

Jets are even harder to deal with then helicopters. Even when making a direct
attack run on you - ae. diving at you while shooting rockets and guns - it
presents a small profile that is difficult to hit while accounting for shell
drop. There's also the angle of attack - at a high angle of attack you won't
be able to shoot it at all, although it will not be able to deal as much
damage.

Designated shell hits are also neigh impossible, because jets moves fast
enough to dodge prolonged SOFLAM lock, fly far enough to avoid limited-range
lock-on, and fly fast enough to move out of laser designation and throw off
a shell even if you do launch it (although I've gotten extremely close before).

The best defense is Canister Shot. Wait for it to get as close as possible on
its attack run and begin its upwards turn away from you (exposing its
vulnerable underbelly) and then release; oftentimes the damage done is enough
for a disable, which almost always translates into a vehicle destroy (jet
pilots almost always bail, Extinguisher is rare, landings are hard to pull off)
This does require the jet to be at an angle within bounds for your gun, and for
you to have good aim; overall this usually only works out when you see it
already and know it's going for you beforehand. If the attack is done from
particularly long range, a long Canister Shot won't do much damage but will
often encourage the jet to break off and focus on a not so defensible target.

Your big comfort, really, is that jets simply don't do enough damage to blow a
tank in a single attack run. They might damage and disable you, but they'll
have to circle around to make another attack run to kill you. Assuming minimal
anti-air competence, they shouldn't get a second opportunity, they should be
forced away by anti-air fire from boots on the ground or from air assets. If
you are particularly concerned by jets and by helicopters, keeping an anti-air
launcher as your secondary will help.

CITV and Guided Shells
......................

The final piece of strategy is Guided Shells, which can lock onto air targets
if they are laser-designated. There are a few sources of laser designation,
discussed in depth later in this guide, but for you the most important one is
the CITV. The CITV is a third seat in the tank that is the last thing to be
unlocked. Unlike the other upgrades, the CITV is permanent, and once you get it
you can always access this third seat, even if the driver doesn't have it.

CITV, short for Commander in the Vehicle, allows its user to do a few things:
spot targets, laser designate them, access a slightly magnified thermal view,
and use a weak version of Proximity Scan that only targets moving targets at
intervals, but is still effective for finding nearby targets. It's the laser
designation that's important, as it allows your tank to act as an independent
guided missile team with heavy armor, like a SOFLAM/Javelin combo on the ground
but better. The CITV lazes targets while the driver aims for and shoots at them
with guided shells. This is extremely effective against distant tanks and
helicopters in particular. When the CITV seat isn't needed, the CITV should
switch to the gunner seat to provide protection against ground targets. The
thermal view is also very, very helpful when trying to spot enemy infantry.

Note that the range of the CITV designation is longer then that of the Guided
Shell as well as having a higher maximum pitch than the gun barrel, and that if
the enemy manages to break visual contact before the missile hits it will
stop tracking the target, though in the case of ground targets it may still
hit.

Specializations
...............

IR Smoke (2nd slot, start)
IR Smoke, and IR devices in general, are probably the most commonly used specs
across all vehicle classes, and for good reason. IR Smoke is a countermeasure
that, when popped, surrounds your tank in a billow of smoke that dissipates
after about 5 seconds. This smoke has several effects: it prevents lock on,
disrupts laser designation, sends guided missiles off-course, and blocks and
fizzes out spotting. It also makes it impossible to see or be seen in or next
to the tank, an advantage when repairing and a disadvantage when in a tank
fight. Its use is fairly obvious, and with proper management of running away
from targeting, IR Smoke almost completely prevents you from getting hit and
killed by Javelins and other aimed devices.

In addition, when you need to repair, pop smoke to cover you and set to work.
You may need to get back in to pop smoke again, especially in case someone is
trying to get a lock on you. Smoke is a lot better then air IR Flares, as it
provides a longer period of protection and makes you effectively immune to
guided missiles, except for the occassional mistimed firing or lucky shot.
You should not leave the base without this equipped, except perhaps for the
singular case of the last point in Damavand Peak Rush.

Coaxial LMG (3rd slot, 2100 points)
Your first weapon unlock, the Coaxial LMG is an anti-infantry tool that you can
access as a secondary weapon when driving. It is mounted alongside your cannon,
and is used exclusively for engaging infantry, spraying them with fire in
between and during cannon shots. In this regard it is quite effective, acting
as a slightly weaker gunner, and supplementing your anti-infantry role if you
also have a gunner. It does overheat, however, and cannot damage other vehicles
at all, except by shooting the driver (unlikely). This is the best possible
secondary weapon against infantry.

Autoloader (1st slot, 4400 points)
A simple effect that increases the rate at which you can shoot your cannon,
increasing its overall effectiveness against pretty much everything, but
especially other tanks. Autoloader and Proximity Scan are the two best
competing items in this slot, as Autoloader increases the effectiveness of your
cannon (as well as Guided Shells and Canister Shot if you have them equipped),
while Proximity Scan gives you excellent infantry-defensive capacity and
renders you effectively immune to C4.

Zoom Optics (2nd slot, 7600 points)
By pressing the right mouse button you will access an enhanced 3x zoom view,
making long-range shots easier but also magnifying apparent bullet drop.
Honestly? Zoom Optics is worthless in all instances and I can't really
recommend it for much of anything. It's only singularly useful for shelling
enemy assets spawning at range - a problem that plauges a few maps are tank
commanders who just sit behind cover and shell enemy armor and air assets
before they can even get out of base. Don't do that: it's called base rape, and
in addition to ruining the game, WILL get you banned.

Maintenance (1st slot, 12000 points)
Increases the rate at which your tank repairs damage after getting hit, as well
as decreasing the associated wait time. A general perk that isn't as useful as
Autoloader but has the distinct advantage of carrying over to the gunner's
seat; if you are forming a tank crew, your gunner should be using this. It'd be
more helpful if it did something to assist with or at least slow down the
damage you recieve when disabled.

Coaxial HMG (3rd slot, 17700 points)
The Coaxial HMG is like a slower LMG that does a bit more damage at a much
lower RPM (and thus spamability), but doesn't overheat and can damage aircraft
(although it's not as ideal as the gunner's .50). A more general-purpose gun
then the LMG that can deal with both infantry and aircraft, but neither
particularly well. Since release it's been buffed to usable levels by patches.
I still don't like it too much, however.

Proximity Scan (1st slot, 24700 points)
Proximity Scan detects enemies within a certain range of your tank. It is
constantly on and detects anyone nearby, even if they are crouching or prone,
so it does a better job then some other equipment that do a similar job. Like
Maintenance Proximity Scan is available on the gunner's seat. Proximity Scan
goes a long way towards giving your tank independence: as the saying goes,
knowing is half the battle, and knowing where nearby enemies are and the fact
that they are there in the first place gives you mean defensive anti-infantry
capability, renders you more or less immune to C4, and makes you much more
independent of friendly infantry support when doing things like capping flags.
Autoloader and Proximity Scan are the best specs in this spot. Note: Proximity
Scan is not very useful when you have a CITV, and that seat has similar and
overlapping capacities.

Guided Shell (3rd slot, 33200 points)
Guided Shells are equipped as secondary weapon that fires in the same space as
your main cannon - you can fire a regular shell afterwards. They take the form
of a rocket-speed (slower then a cannon shot) guided rocket fired from your
cannon that can track ground targets and laser-designated targets. In terms of
ground targets, it can lock onto targets up to 300 meter away, dealing typical
AT damage but taking longer to reload than a cannon shot, so it is best used
against distant tanks and fast-moving light vehicles which are difficult to hit
otherwise (did someone say "jeep"?).

The laser-designated shot, meanwhile, can acquire targets within the same range,
but can do so even blindly (ae. firing at a tank behind a building) and follows
a top-attack pattern that deals heavy damage to tanks (50 damage) and destroys
aircraft outright. This mode, however, requires someone to laze the target for
you, and maintain the laze, in order to work. Laser designation is a complex
topic that is dealt with in full later in this guide; using Guided Shells along
with CITV is discussed above.

Firing Guided Shells requires a lot of room. The shell heads forward about 10
meters before turning up to make an attack on a land vehicle, up heading up to
attack a jet or helicopter. As such you need a serious amount of flat land or
an overhang from which to fire, as anything getting in the way will cause it to
explode and, unlike tank shells, guided shells can and will damage you.

With Canister Shot, Guided Shells used to fire independantly of the main
cannon, but this was neither realistic nor well-balanced, and this capacity has
since been patched out.

Thermal Optics (2nd slot, 44200 points)
Thermal Optics allows you to enter a thermal view, which allows you to see
anything dangerous as a white blotch. This makes infantry and squad equipment
much easier to see. To be honest, I haven't used it much, but it has its
advantages. Thermal Optics are partially negated by Black Ops suits and the
Thermal Camo upgrade on tanks and Stealth on aircaft. Because it takes up your
IR Smoke slot, it's soley used on compact maps where you won't get locked onto
anyway, like the crowded underground tunnel on Damavand Peak.

Thermal Camo (1st slot, 54800 points)
The counterpart of Thermal Optics, this makes your tank harder to lock onto and
reduces your view in thermal vision, as well as decreasing spotting radius and
spot time. The effect isn't groundbreaking, but like Thermal Optics, it has its
(quite limited) uses.

Canister Shell (3rd slot, 68100 points)
A shot that has the same reload as the regular cannon, but does so independent
of the main cannon. Upon firing releases a shitton of small metal beads that
quickly disperse over a wide area. The damage tapers off with distance, acting
like a scattergun that is very much lethal to infantry. Compared to the LMG, it
is just as good at close range, has more damage potential at longer range (in
fact it is effective up to medium-long range), and can damage aircraft
significantly harder then anything other then the main HEAT shells and laser-
guided shells. If you're using Canister Shot, Autoloader or Proximity Sensor is
recommended.

Canister has been nerfed in much the same manner as Guided Shells - it used to
fire independantly of the main cannon, but this was neither realistic nor well-
balanced, and has since been patched out. The result is that HMG and LMG have
gained relavency again, where in the past they were relegated to low-level
(ae, noob) usage. The decrease in ubiquity has also indirectly made life easier
for jets and helicopters, which hate this spec.

Reactive Armor (1st slot, 83200 points)
Reactive Armor equips tank panels on the tank's sides and back. These panels
will take a fall for your tank; meaning, if they get hit they will sacrifice
themselves to prevent damage to you. This basically translates into a grace
period on three sides when facing enemies shooting at you, and makes it a lot
easier to bail when getting hit in all directions, as you can usually get away
relatively intact. Reactive Armor can be repaired much like the engine, by
holding the blowtorch a bit after the tank has been returned to 100% health.
It lets you be more intrepid and aggressive in your movements, and is useful
on particularly infantry-heavy maps.

CITV Station (slotless, 10000 points)
CITV is a permanent upgrade that is discussed in depth in a section above. Its
main use is as laser painter for guided shells. Note that you don't have to
unlock CITV for it to be an available on your tanks, but you do have to have
unlocked to be able to access it.

Videos:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=orgpWKurBuA - IFVs and MBTs.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
[3.03] Infantry Fighting Vehicles

What are IFVs? They are essentially weaker tanks, with less armor and a weaker
but chain-firing gun. IFVs are still excellent vehicles, however, because their
chain-firing autocannon, which fires six rounds in rapid succession, is
naturally better at hitting infantry, and it can adapt to this role quite
readily.

A lot of what can be said about IFVs is a redux of the above, but with a more
infantry-oriented flavor. IFVs can be augmented in two basic ways through
specializations: in an anti-infantry capacity, and in an anti-tank capacity.
The latter allows you to trump other IFVs and fight neck-and-neck with MBTs
(doing as much damage to them as a regular MBT, but you'll still lose to one
because you have less armor). The former allows you to act at close quarters
in a capacity that is simply not completely possible with MBTs. The vast
majority of what is written above applies here as well, with the caveat that
you have less armor and a cannon with more shots but less damage. So there's no
reason to repeat, really.

The one thing that isn't redux however is how IFVs handle themselves. IFVs are
very fast, much faster than tanks both in turning and in accelaration, but
because they have wheels, not treads, they must be moving in order to turn.
This can get you into often-lethal trouble; be as aware of your surrounding as
possible.

Specializations
...............
IR Smoke (2nd slot, 800 points)
Same as with MBTs: ubiquitous.

ATGM Launcher (3rd slot, 2300 points)
Tops off your vehicle with a wire-guided missile launcher. Once launched the
missile (TOW or KORNET) will go straight for 10 meters, then follow your cursor
to the target. It's slow-moving, even for a missile, but is effective when it
hits. It does excellent damage to other vehicles, but suffers from the fact
that it can't hit low azimuths, as you can't point your turret below your
vehicle, and it fires and goes straight for ten meters. It also has a low
blast radius, limiting its use against infantry. In other words, it's for
engaging enemy armor and blowing the walls out of buildings, and little else.
Think of it as an a mobile KORNET/TOW launcher - because really, that's what
it is.

Belt Speed (1st slot, 4700 points)
Same thing as the MBT Autoloader.

Coaxial LMG (3rd slot, 8300 points)
Same as with MBTs.

Thermal Optics (2nd slot, 13100 points)
Same as with MBTs.

Proximity Scan (1st slot, 19200 points)
Same as with MBTs, but even more useful. As I said before you can set up your
vehicle to deal better with infantry, and this is one of the vital components
for such a setup. Extremely useful on thick urban maps - pretty much anything
in B2K comes to mind. Some would argue essential.

Zoom Optics (2nd slot, 26900 points)
Same as with MBTs.

Maintenance (1st slot, 36000 points)
Same as with MBTs.

APFSDS-T Shell (3rd slot, 47000 points)
Another anti-tank oriented attachment, this adds cannon shot onto your
vehicle that can fire up to five armor-piercing fin-stabilized discarding-sabot
tracer rounds. What that basically means is that it's a round that relies on
kinetic energy to puncture holes in the vehicle, as opposed to HEAT round "jet
stream" type pyrotechnics, and as such it does great damage against vehicles,
but with no collateral damage, poor against infantry. Allows essentially
continuous fire and is an option opposite to the ATGM. Note that these rounds
are perfectly accurate (With Zoom Optics you can make yourself an IFV sniper
rifle! Don't try it. Really, it's stupid.) and it has about half the firing
speed of the standard HE shells. Strikes a balance between the ATGM Launcher
(almost purely anti-tank) and the LMG (purely anti-infantry).

Thermal Camo (1st slot, 60000 points)
Same as with the MBTs.

Guided Missile (3rd slot, 74000 points)
Simply Guided Shells on a separate launcher. Since you don't have a CITV, the
argument for its use is significantly weaker, but it's still an excellent
choice IF AND WHEN your team is competently SOFLAM-ing.

Reactive Armor (1st slot, 90000 points)
Same as with MBTs. An alternative to Proximity Scanner if you have a gunner
who is using that perk (ae. you actually coordinated things), as it protects
you from precisely the flank attacks close-range Engineers love.

Videos:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=orgpWKurBuA - IFVs and MBTs.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Pu2IaTsz1zQ - CITV + Guided Shells

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
[3.04] Mobile Anti-Air Guns

Mobile Anti-Air Guns are great at racking up lots of points quickly, and are,
IMO, the most points-effective vehicles in the game, as they do not need to get
into an advanced position to be useful, and their targets (mostly) fear them
and don't stray near. They were a relative oddity in BBC2, but no more; many
vehicle heavy maps give both sides precious anti-air guns.

Mobile AA vs. Air
.................

Using an anti-air gun consists of driving it to a nice position nearer to the
back of your team then the front, one with ground cover to hide behind but a
clear view of the sky. Once you have found such a position, you need to start
monitoring the skies, spotting enemy air vehicles and firing at them.

Your main gun is an inaccurate but very high-speed minigun (or two on the
Tung). This makes it excellent at dealing with vehicles at close range, where
you can take down an enemy chopper in a couple of seconds. It's also excellent
against infantry, suppressing them like crazy and dealing high damage - better,
in fact, then anything the MBT fields for this role. However it is absolutely
pitiful against other armored vehicles, doing very low damage and often only
calling you out to enemy MBTs; a MBT can disable you a single hit, and kill you
in three, in the time it would take you to do 25 damage to it. Avoid tanks like
the plague; run away from them and hope they didn't see you or don't dare
advance that far.

Against aircraft, the minigun is excellent at close range, as I already
explained, but it deals moderate damage at medium range as well. The bigger
the target, the more damage you will be able to do; a plane flying away, for
instance, makes for a poor profile, while one flying sideways with its top
pointed towards you is an excellent target. In terms of how difficult they are
to hit, jets go first, followed by scout helicopters, then attack helicopters,
then transport helicopters.

Also keep in mind that at long range you will be doing pitiful damage and all
your tracers will do is point you out to the target. This isn't that much of
a problem except with attack helicopters, whose weapons are far more accurate
then yours; attack helicopters are one of the juiciest target, but also the
hardest-hitting, as one can park back at high altitude and take you down with
a rain of cannon and rocket fire. TV missiles are especially deadly, as you
have no means of defense against them. For this reason it is best to restrain
your guns at long range, especially against enemy helicopters.

What good jet pilots do to avoid AA Guns: they max out their altitude and get
as close to you as they can, then dip almost straight down at you, firing
rocket barrages and hitting you with gunfire that is, again, more accurate then
your own. Although you might get disabled, and this seldom results in a
full-on kill, good pilots can then loop back around to let their planes and
flares/EMC recharge so they can make another run on you. For this reason jets
can be dangerous too, and it's vital to keep track of what's going on around
you.

The second part of the AA Gun is the AA Missiles. These are two missiles that
can lock onto enemy air targets, like Stingers and IGLAs (actually they are
Stingers and Iglas), and fire two missiles at them, one after the other.
These missiles have a far greater worthwhile range then the gun, but they can
be distracted by Flares or ECM, and the vehicle can often run away before you
can get a second lock and kill. Nonetheless they are an excellent weapon, and
you should swap to them immediately if you see someone pop flares or ECM.

If an enemy is far away but getting closer, it's best to gauge the overheat
time on the gun to figure when to let it rip for the most damage.

A bit on strategy: you don't want to go guns blazing against all air targets,
as they can see your tracers and you will not be doing very good damage at a
distance. As such firing at a helicopter on the other side of the map is
just marking yourself for the enemy team. It's better to launch missiles
at such an extended range and not use the gun at all, unless they see you
already, in which case it can't hurt. Wait on your guns until they are
relatively close. Missiles leave smoke tails as well, which are easy to
spot, but they don't last nearly as long as a sustained firing barrage.

Mobile AA vs. other ground vehicles
...................................

The Mobile AA gun can damage enemy vehicles of all colors, but that doesn't
mean that it SHOULD. Mobile AA is disabled in a single hit from an MBT, and
destroyed in three, in the span of time where you would do about 40% damage to
the enemy tank (not to mention that your gun overheats, theirs doesn't). IFVs
don't do quite as much damage, but they still have a major edge over you in
terms of firepower.

MBTs that are not otherwise occupied, therefore, should be avoided at all
costs. If you come into full view of an enemy tank you will die; thus take care
to get under cover (also helpful for avoiding rocket barrages from the air) and
avoid firing your weapons while it is nearby, as the tracers and the sound of
the minigun are pretty obvious, as are the smoke trails from the missiles. If
an enemy MBT has spotted you, run away; if you take a single shot, you are
already screwed, as you won't be able to move aside while disabled. Note: the
Moble AA has been buffed so that nowadays you'll generally survive a single
tank shot.

You'll be surprised what people can miss; I once coasted past two MBTs and an
IFV in a AMTRAC, and Mobile AA can do just as well. Remember, the last thing
you want to do is fire on the enemy tank; this will only mark yourself for him.
Hope you don't get spotted!

Against jeeps, you are actually better armed then the MBT. Again, the cannon is
difficult to aim against a fast-moving, small target, while the minigun(s)
don't have that problem. You can clean out and destroy a jeep in the open in a
few seconds of fire.

Oh and watch out for C4 jeeps. You can be so focused on the airspace that you
lose sight of the ground and you get rammed by a jihadest. It helps to have
teammates warn you they're coming.

Mobile AA vs. infantry
......................

Believe it or not but Mobile AA is actually the best-equipped platform against
enemy infantry, as its gun has devastating power, can break cover easily, is
very easy to aim, has significant accuracy, and provides unsurpassed
suppression. Although you can't battle armor, if you know that a region is
populated soley by infantry, you can be intrepid and rush forward, cleaning
them out with your minigun. The dangers of this method are the same as with
the IFV and MBT (with infantry-centric upgrades); watch out for C4 and armor
support in particular.

Specializations
...............

IR Smoke (Slot 2) Start
Just like on the MBT, IR Smoke is a vital upgrade that will protect you from
all forms of designated fire. One can argue, however, that it's less needed
then on the MBT, which has to deal with a greater volume of fire; nonetheless
it is quite useful, if not quite indispensable.

Contrary to what you might expect, your AA missiles are unaffected by friendly
IR smoke, and will maintain lock-on sequence through the smoke - so long as you
follow the box accurately. It does obscure you sufficiently to make the gun
useless, however.

Anti-Air Missile (Slot 3) 1200 points
Anti-Air Missiles is a dual guided missile launcher that basically consists
of two Stinger or IGLA missiles set on the sides of your vehicle. This means
that it is basically Heat Seekers with one important exception, that it is
unaffected by Below Radar. Anti-Air missiles are a major complement of the
vehicle, the only thing in this slot, and are discussed in detail above.

Belt Speed (Slot 1) 2500 points
A good general upgrade that allows you to sustain fire for longer. Simple.

Zoom Optics (Slot 2) 4400 points
Useless.

Proximity Scan (Slot 1) 24700 points
Same as the tank, but not useful on a non-infantry oriented vehicle.

Thermal Optics (Slot 2) 10000 points
Probably the most useful vehicle for it, if you can stand losing IR Smoke; this
is helpful, mostly, when shooting infantry on the run and when shooting into
the sun. Speaking of which, a major problem with AA Guns: if it flys below the
sun you can't see it for the life of you. This solves that problem.

Air Radar (Slot 1) 14000 points
Air Radar is an interesting proposal. It expands the minimap, allowing you to
see all enemies within a much greater radius. What this basically does is that,
although it reduces your firetime compared to Belt Speed, it prevents enemy
planes and helos from ever getting to sneak up on you, a major benefit but one
can pass up with an observant team and not particularly sneaky enemies.

Maintenance (Slot 1) 19000 points
Quite useless, because with AA guns, generally, either it's a vehicle that will
make another pass to finish you off while you're disabled, or one that disables
you but doesn't return. If you face a tank you're screwed anyway, so why even
bother?

Thermal Camo (Slot 3) 25000 points
Same as with MBTs.

Reactive Armor (Slot 3) 32000 points
Less useful then on tanks, for the simple fact that you won't be taking that
many missiles anyway, or at least shouldn't be.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
[3.05] Attack helicopters

Attack helicopters are nimble and pack an enormous punch. The virtue of an
attack helicopter is that it can fly low over the battlefield, screwing over
anything in view so long as the pilot does a good job avoiding designation.
You are fairly well-armored, but not incredibly so; some discretion is advised.

Like other well-armed vehicles, attack helos come in a variety of forms, their
abilities tuned to whatever specializations you are currently running and how
your team is doing and you are feeling at the moment. The three basic firing
modes, so to speak, are getting up close and raining hell, sitting back and
raining hell, and sitting way up and raining hell on enemy air assets. These
are all interchangeable strategies.

The first part off doing well in an attack helicopter is learning to fly. I
won't lie, flying an attack helo is difficult, complicated by the presence of a
third dimension of movement. Flying well isn't something I can easily describe
in a textual guide. Its specifics are explained, in part, in the Piloting:
Helicopters section way above this one.

Strategy
........

The usefulness of your team's attack helicopter depends a lot on how good your
team is with air superiority. The less you have to worry about getting shot
down by enemy jets, the better and more effective of a platform you will be.
Conversly, if you're stuck constantly firing Heat Seekers at enemy aircraft,
the helicopter is reduced to near uselessness.

What you don't want to do is fly straight through the map into the enemy base.
This is suicidal; you'll get filled full of anti-air fire faster then you can
say shlinktshticks. Like the tank, you want to stay nearer to where your team
is, attacking enemy armor and infantry, helping cap and defend points.

The best defense is a good offense. Yes, you can float up to high altitude and
act like a high-strung mobile anti-air platform, but beyond the element of
surpise (unlikely: you'll be marked extremely quickly, even if your height
protects you from surface AA) this is little effective. Jets have every
advantage when it comes to air engagements: loadout, speed, escapism, damage
potential. You want to specifically avoid just sitting at high altitude and
shooting AA missiles all day - leave the task to your team's jets and only
concentrate on the task when they open up a vulnerability or are visible
attacking or coming out of an attack on you.

You should be flying low to the ground, making attack runs on ground armor and
infantry assets and engaging enemy helicopters when they appear. Flying low,
you are protected from enemy anti-air launchers by Below Radar, from enemy
jets by your low altitude and skill at manuveering, and damage in general by
the ease with which you can land for repairs (being, you know, pretty much
there already in terms of distance to the ground). You'll be racking up points
being a credit to the team by obliterating infantry and armor assets.

There are three basic attack strategies with a helicopter. The first is hover
mode. This has two uses: the first is getting to altitude and bringing those
Anti-Air Missiles to bear on enemy air assets; the second is giving your Gunner
the room to fire a TV Missile, potentially an enemy Anti-Air Gun that's being
difficult at range. Hovering exposes you to fire from jets, other helicopters,
and ground-based AA, but is extremely useles in these instances.

The second also involves hovering, but at a lower altitude. When there are no
tanks nearby that can destroy (or, with Canister, disable) your helicopter in
one hit, you can keep your nose level and hover with relative impuny over an
infantry-heavy point or position. This gives your Gunner a stable firing
platform and confers to him maximum possible accuracy, allowing him to do
things like completely clear out an exposed point of foes. Staying in this
position for too long makes you vulnerable, however, so before long be sure to
get forward motion going again and glide away, perhaps with a final rocket
barrage to seal the deal. This should also be your first move when attacking
enemy armor assets that don't see you from behind. Add a sideways motion to
make it less likely you'll get shot out of your chopper and to further
confuse ignorant armor targets. You can scoop down to ground level to deal
with individual or small groups of infantry most effectively, but always be
wary of enemy armor.

The third and final (and most common) maneuver is the straffe run, which
involves a rushing forward overflight of a target, gun and rockets blazing.
Against infantry low-altitude hovering is more effective, but against enemy
armor this is the best maneuver in your book, as it deals significant damage
while not leaving you overly exposed to their fire. If they don't see you,
start off by hovering and letting your gunner take shots, before coming in for
a dive and adding rockets to the mix. When disengaging you should do two
things: get to high enough altitude (indeed, try not to dip too low) to be out
of yaw range of the enemy armor's gun, and add a sideways tilt to further
complicate any return fire. This isn't very useful against infantry, but it's
the best move in the book against tanks, AA tanks notwithstanding.

Remember never to leave base without another person in an Attack Helicopter.
The rockets are nice, but the cannon is the chopper's actual primary weapon.
Remember that, as the pilot, you can spot enemies as well. This makes life
easier for your gunners.

If you are being targeted and don't know the source, and are not otherwise
occupied so much as to risk a hit, pop ECM, nose dive for the ground, and
make off as fast as you can; because of ECM or Flares, your speed,
and Below Radar, you'll be very difficult to destroy. If you see rockets
impact below you, that means that what launched the missile at you was a
helicopter, and you need to ether swerve back and meet the challenge, as an
enemy helo at close range is duck season for them, or if they're a bit
distant keep going at full speed forward, as they'll be forced out of
firing position if they want to follow you.

It's more difficult distinguishing between jets and AA cannons; if a jet passes
you get out the Heat Seekers, if an AA cannon is firing at you just put more
distance between you and him.

Remember that you don't always have to gun the engine. Although S only has
practical use when landing, simply allowing your chopper to lose airspeed and
"fall" is an excellent and easy maneuver to learn, giving you and your gunner
more quality time with a target - just remember that you have to restart the
rotors, so to speak, and gain traction later on. This is particularly useful
when attacking tanks that don't see you at low altitude (get moving again
once he starts turning his cannon at you) and at tailing enemy helicopters
that are unaware of your proximity.

A maneuver to avoid is ramming. The game is built so that running into another
air vehicle will either cause both vehicles to spin off-hilter and/or take
damage, or simply explode, serving Teamkills to both pilots. Ramming is a noob
tactic that wastes perfectly good air assets, and as it gets you no points
and generally both vehicles go down the same way, it is not a good "tactic"
and is and should be an accidental occurrence. Another tactic to avoid is
getting in a helicopter and doing that rediculous TV Missile loop: getting to
altitude, switching to the gunner seat, firing a TV missile, switching back,
getting to altitude again, and so on. This wastes an air asset and isn't
even that effective - heaven knows why people do it anyway.

Although it's possible to cap point in an attack helicopter, it's extremely
dangerous and I don't recommend it.

What distinguishes skilled helicopter pilots from unskilled ones is their
ability to use the terrain to their advantage and their ability to stick as
close to the ground as possible. Dodging guided missiles without Flares or ECM
is an art unto itself. First of all, flying as close to the ground as possible
is a big multiplier, as it magnifies the chance that the missiles will impact
something along the way and be rendered harmless. Try and put a big, bulky map
object between you and the missile - a mountain, a crane, a building, etcetera.
The more crowded the map, the more difficult it is to fly on, but conversly the
more effective cover will be against enemy missiles.

As for flying close to the ground: get your nose in the dirt. The more time you
spend Below Radar, the safer you will be. Particularly impressive tricks are
underflying the cranes on Noshahar Canal and the highway signs on Tehran
Highway.

If you're targetted by a guided missile and are all out of countermeasures, get
to minimal altitude over someplace flat and roll sideways as fast as you dare.
This will cause the Javelin, tank missile, etc. to miss on its first dive down
and then turn around to try again, but lacking the space to do so, it will
impact the ground instead and spare you. Be warned: it doesn't always work, and
is situational when it does.

Helicopter-on-helicopter (and Scout helicopter too)
........................

Helicopter dogfights come in two forms, the long-range Heat Seeker standoff,
and the close-range rockets-howling melee. At long range and with Heat Seekers,
both vehicles will be trying to get a lock on the other, and the first one to
get missiles off is generally the winner. This applies to Scout helicopters
as well, as they can carry Heat Seekers of their own that are just as capable.
Tactics in long-range fights is pulling ECM later then your opponent, and
hoping for friendly intervention on your allies parts. In particularly well-
matched fights, both choppers will likely go down - even if one shoots first,
the disabled chopper will still be able to fire its Anti-Air Missile salvo.

If you feel you're in a losing battle, have been weakened already, or have
support a bit further back, another tactic in these situations is to pop ECM
and then dive to the ground, heading towards home and away from the enemy
chopper. Their Heat Seekers will jam thanks to Below Radar and they will
often be guiled forward by you fleeing. This doesn't always work, but when
you have support a bit further back, it's either suicidal rush or disengaging
for them.

Got hit by both Heat Seekers? It's not the end of the world. You'll likely
die, but you have one more shot against your opponent. Do your best to keep
yourself stable and get off one more round of Heat Seekers; with 9 health,
you'll have just enough to hit and hopefully revenge kill your foe if he
doesn't manage to land a couple of rockets or a handful of 20mm shots first.

Another method is to combine the Laser Pointer on the pilot with Guided
Missiles on the gunner. The advantage is that this deal critical damage in one
hit and cannot be thrown off quite as easily, while the disadvantage is that
you must maintain a stable view of the enemy chopper, that ECM can counter
this a lot easier than Heat Seekers, and that it requires greater coordination
to use properly. It easily blows through enemy choppers using Flares, though,
which is a definite plus. (conversly, this is a plus for using ECM in your own
chopper)

At close range you have to use your rockets and cannon in the battle rather
then the Heat Seekers. If the enemy sees you, then a standoff ensues, with
both players running their guns and spamming their missiles at the other.
Helicopter dogfighting is a rather clumsy procedure involving facing off the
other foe while trying to get one of two advantages: higher height (allowing
you to angle down on them) and a better shot angle. Oftentimes pilots or
gunners may be killed by cockpit hits, in which case the other player has to
swap in or persist onwards, their firepower halved.

Otherwise your helo may have an angle on your foe, and they don't know you're
there, and you are relatively close. Come in to greet them, getting on their
tail and jamming more rockets and cannon fire down their throat then they can
shake their tail rotor at. The safest procedure when getting hit by a
mystery opponent is to duck down and weave along the ground, so you have to
not let them shake you, keeping the opponent in your cockpit. This kind of
close-up fight is pretty rare, but it happens. They will know what's
happening once they see the rockets and cannon fire hitting the ground or if
someone competent on their team spots you, after which you should expect a
swerving turn to face you, or a wild chase towards enemy territory.

At relatively close range fired Heat Seekers cause the enemy helo to
immediately enter into panic stage. ECM will only protect from getting hit
if put out before the missiles are launched, while Flares won't do anything
for you at all, not activating fast enough to protect you, so you have to
pop them beforehand to extract benefit.

At extended distances, even past Heat Seeker range, TV Missiles are an
effective Gunner armanent. Though they're difficult to aim and very fast-
moving, and although enemy helos move quite quickly and erratically, a single
hit will completely destroy the enemy vehicle, ending the engagement before
it can even start. If they manage to hit, of course, and TV Missiles hitting
helicopters has long been one of the most bug-frought parts of the game.

The difference with Scout Helicoters is that they are more fragile and that
the pilot can be shot out more easily.

Helicopter-on-jet
.................

The problem with jets is that they fly so impossibly fast, that they
can make an attack run on you and be out of Heat Seeker range just as soon.
Attack helicopters are meat to jets, but they can still fight back with Heat
Seekers. In the air you have a better view of things then on the ground -
there's nothing blocking your vision - and because you are flying at
approximately the same altitude as your targets, the radius in which you can
fire at the enemies is greater as well. Think of the radius of the missiles
as a giant sphere; from the ground, half the sphere is in the ground, but in
the air, the whole thing is up and above.

If an enemy jet is making a point-blank attack run on you and you manage to
get Heat Seekers lock, wait for the jet to be about 10 meters away. Any nearer
and the missiles will have to double back, getting caught in flares, or even
fail to fire at all, and any further he will easily flare them off. In that
sweet spot, however, you can punch out missiles and hit him because he usually
won't be fast enough to pop them so soon, as the missiles will be on him right
quick. The problem is that jets fly fast, and the sweet spot is thin, so you
have to get pretty lucky. Some jets wise up and actually plug flares
beforehand when getting targeted, in which case you have to take what damage
you may and try to wheel around to get another shot. The opposite is also
true for jets, as they can push out Heat Seekers at the same range as you
can, to the same effect; if he's not firing his guns and you get warning
lights, pop flares or ECM, but the later you do this the less time he will
have to switch to and damage you with his guns.

If you're taking serious damage, do the smart thing and hit the ground, or as
close to it as you dare, getting cover between you and them if you can, and
stopping to repair once it's safe. The most effective defensive maneuver is
a backwards sideways yaw roll - that is, angling yourself backwards while
pitching ("scooping") sideways. This is a motion that is difficult to
replicate in a jet for reasons that should be apparent to anyone that's ever
flown one.

The gunner's gun does good damage against jets, if he can see them and shoot at
them. Against jets flying tightly with their underbelly exposed, a gunner might
even get a disable from a single magazine of ammunition. This rarely happens,
because most jet pilots know this quite well, but it's not impossible.

In reality, of course, if a good jet pilot decides to kill you, he WILL get
to kill you, unless you see and shoot him first. There's simply no
substitute for good air superiority.

Helicopter-on-AA gun
....................

The best attack on an enemy AA gun is Guided Rockets, which can accurately
hit the enemy AA at ranges it cannot reach, and TV Missiles, which have to
same ability. If you stay out of lock-on range, you can fire off bursts of
rockets and gun that are accurate enough to hurt him at ranges where he
cannot. At close range, however, you cannot possible hope to defeat a
vehicle designed for destroying you, unless it is already at least disabled.

So you have to fight dirty. Get several air assets to gang up on the enemy
AA cannon, overpowering it by brute force. If he's located near a large rock
embayment, or other feature, put that between you and him, pop up to deal
heavy damage, then duck back down to avoid the return fire, landing and
repairing if necessary. Remember, you can repair faster then he can. A good
trick to know is that the rotors stay on as long as the pilot is in the
chopper, so to decrease the time you need have the gunner handle the
repairs.

Helicopter-on-MBT (and IFVs)
.................

Tactics against enemy tanks depends on a couple of factors. The first is if
he has Guided shells and CITV. If you have ECM, this is ok, as you can pop
ECM while he shakes his cannon around, wasting his time trying to get a lock.
If you have flares, however, attacking one is practically suicide, as the
Guided Missile return fire will blow you to smitherines.

A second factor is if he has Canister Shot. A well-aimed canister can do
as much as 50 damage to your vehicle, making close-range approaches really
painful. If you know a MBT has canister shot, stay a little distance away,
move or strafe sideways, and shower him with fire; he won't be able to do
much damage at longer and more-difficult-to-hit range. Remote Gunners and
HMGs are similar concerns, but are mostly harmless to the perceptive
helicopter pilot.

The other problem with the tank is that a single cannon shot will blow your
chopper to kingdom come, destroying you. For this reason avoid making low
passes when the gun is pointed at you. You might win- he might miss - but
it's too much of a danger when you can outgun him at slightly longer range;
that's what the sideways topwards motion, described in Strategy, is for.

The only difference with IFVs is that they are less threatening to you, lacking
CITV or Canister Shells, and needing several cannon hits to disable you.

To attack a tank, spot it for your gunner, angle down, and then pump out all of
your rockets. Depending on your altitude and angle of attack, you will get one
or two burst before you have to pull out. A low-angle, high-start attack will
destroy the tank outright, but this is relatively rare because the altitude
that you have to attack from generally only happens during prolonged anti-jet
fights. Most attacks will require making a second pass. If you are at
relatively low altitude, behind them, and they don't see you, execute maneuver
#2 and then move into maneuver #3.

If the tank does not see you, and especially if you are behind him, you have
a very viable destroy opportunity. Get relatively close, let go of the
accelarator, and empty your rockets and cannon into him. You will need about
two rocket packs to finish the job, but assuming you started from a high
enough altitude, it's doubtful he'll be able to screen you and return fire
quickly enough relative to the damage he's recieving. If he does aim at you,
the prudent thing to do is run away - you never know how good his aim is or
if he will get lucky.

If you see a diamond on the screen, it means that an enemy vehicle has been
lazed and that your gunner can throw an AGM at it. In these cases it's best
to stabilize the chopper in view of the tank, let your gunner take the shot,
and then swoop down, using either your damage advantage or generated "can't
see through smoke" advantage to soup up damage.

Both seats can hear the sound effects or the other, meaning that attentive
teammates will know: when ECM is deployed, when it is ready again, when flares
are deployed, when they are ready again, when the gunner swaps weapons, and
when the other player is trying to get a Heat Seeker or Guided Missile lock.

Helicopter-on-infantry
......................

Rockets do poor damage against enemy infantry, but the gunner's cannon is a
fantastic weapon in this regard. If you want too clean out a point, hover above
it and let your gunner do the work. Hovering is generally a dangerous idea as
it makes you a sitting duck, but against infantry armed with only rocket
launchers, it's not such a bad idea (rpg hits don't disable you and only rarely
get a cockpit hit). Just remember to flare early if needed, and watch for lucky
snipers. And feel free to swoop down as low as needed against lone targets
unprotected by nearby armor.

Specializations
...............
IR Flares (2nd slot, 300 points)
IR Flares are the first specialization that you unlock, and absolutely
essential to beginner helicopter use. IR Flares are a countermeasure that, when
popped, sends a small shower of thermal particles downward, distracting heat-
seeking missiles and confusing launchers. What this basically does is that it
causes any heat-seeking (anti-air) missiles to miss, and any other missiles
fired shortly thereafter to miss as well. This effect only lasts a short time,
however, taking 10 seconds to reload, and has no effect on laser designation.

Flare technique: First of all the disruption lasts only a short
time, as they will burn up and leave you defenseless again for 10 seconds.
In order to get the most of your flares, you have to stay near them, which
will push enemy launchers into fake lock-on sequences. However this is only
really recommended when you are strafing a target; generally it's better to hit
the deck, diving low to avoid being designated for another missile and building
speed so that you can outrun a missile and pop flares again if you need to 
(feasible if it is far enough away), not to mention covering your bum with
Below Radar. On attack helicopters I recommend you run away as soon as
something tries to lock onto you, unless you are engaging an enemy and want to
bet you can outrun the missile or throw it into a hill or whatnot.

The Gunner used to have Flares available too, but they have since been removed.
Pity, but perhaps they did make the helicopter a little too untargetable.

Heat Seekers (3rd slot, 800 points, pilots only)
An excellent addition to the attack helicopter armament, Heat Seekers allow you
to shoot heat-tracking anti-air missiles that can allow you to engage aircraft
at ranges much longer then practically possible with the primary armament, as
well as giving you the ability to attack enemy jets, your number one foe. They
complete your armament, giving you the ability to deal with any foe in the
game, be they air, land, or sea (although sea is pretty unimportant).

Stealth (1st slot, 1600 points)
Stealth increases tracking difficulty and locking time and decreases lock-on
radius of enemy anti-air missiles, a definite plus in a vehicle that is meant
close-range harrasment of enemy targets. With the exception of long-range
strafing tactics, Stealth is an essential perk for at least one person in
the chopper to have; by convention, it is generally the pilot's first perk.

Autoloader (1st slot, 2800 points)
A good general increase that can come in handy in a lot of situations. It's
more useful on gunners, however, as by the time you turn around after making
an attack run on a tank, your rockets will be primed and ready again, while
the gunner can never suffer from too fast reloads (also Guided Missiles are
much more useful in terms of attacking power).

Zoom Optics (2nd slot, 4400 points)
Only useful for long-range strafing, rarely used.

Proximity Scan (1st slot, 6500 points)
Only detects land-based targets within a microscopic radius, making it
tantamount to useless.

Air Radar (1st slot, 9000 points)
Extremely useful for finding enemy jets, but not really much else. It has its
uses, however; some pilots like to combine it with Heat Seekers as a dedicated
flying AA platform or for greater combat awareness. Much more useful than
Proximity Scan, but that's not saying much.

Guided Missile (3rd slot, 12000 points, gunner only)
Just like the guided somethings available on every other heavy vehicle platform
in the game; the guided missile allows the gunner to lock onto and shoot ground
targets, or to acquire and top-attack laser-designated targets for increased
damage, even if they are not in visual radius (as long as you are in range).
Much like Heat Seekers, many gunners will be using this simply because the only
other thing in this slot, TV Missiles, is the last unlock.

Extinguisher (2nd slot, 16000 points)
Extinguisher is the second of the three countermeasures and quite underrated.
It doesn't actually protect you from missile hits, only allowing you to
instantly repair yourself out of disabled status when hit. Its one major use
is that it increases the damage that enemy vehicles have to do to you to kill
you, and prevents you from being disabled and having to land (at least, you
won't have to do so as often) to repair. It also allows you to recover from
getting knocked up by tanks, and is a blessing in close-range dogfights where
flares and ECM won't really help you. Still, most people opt not to get hit in
the first place. I'm one of those people.

Maintenance (1st slot, 20000 points)
As with other vehicles, this one can and generally is passed up. Its got its
uses but simply cannot outweigh Stealth.

Thermal Optics (2nd slot, 25000 points)
Thermal view is a godsend when it comes to gunning down infantry, allowing you
to see them more clearly and magnifying your ability in the gunner's seat.

Laser Painter (1st slot, 30500 points)
Laser Painter is pretty much useless if you don't have a gunner using Guided
Missiles. Since most gunners do use it, it forms an interesting, if rarely
used, and deadly one-two punch against enemy vehicles. By using Laser
Painter, painting a target, and then having the gunner's Guided Missile to
shoot the enemy down, one can tap into the heavy-duty power of laser-designated
missiles to knock out enemy birds and ground craft in one hit. Nonetheless,
most pilots prefer to use Heat Seekers for this job (after all they get the
kill, right?); Heat Seekers have the advantage of being better against
fast-moving jets, while Guided Missile + Laser Painter can hit non-IR Smoke
protected ground craft.

Below Radar (slotless, 37000 points)
Below Radar is a permanent upgrade for helicopters as well as other air
vehicles at different times. It activates after flying three seconds near the
ground (at most 20 meters above it), hindering spotting and preventing enemy
heat-seekers from locking onto you, but not protecting you from ground-based
AA nor laser designation. Below Radar is much like CITV in that it is a
permanent upgrade that adds a functionality to your vehicle. Because skimming
so close to the ground backwards is a very dangerous proposal (you have to
keep your nose at a stringent ~15 degrees), its main use is when fleeing, just
overflying terra ferma long enough to scramble enemy jet and helicopter lock
ons. In that regard it is incredibly, incredibly useful - see tactics above.
The better you are at keeping your nose "in the dirt", the better of a pilot
you will be.

ECM Jammer (2nd slot, 4400 points, pilot only)
The final countermeasure to be unlocked. ECM Jammer has the advantage of
protecting you from a larger variety of sources for a longer period of time.
Pressing it releases electromagnetic countermeasures, which scramble ALL lock
on sequences (including laser designation) and also distracts missiles, but
only so long as they fly through the particle stream deploying from your
behind.

What that means is that ECM will protect you from all designated missiles AND
most guided missiles, but the latter only when the missile goes through the
particle path. This second bit is unreliable, complicated by distance (maybe
your ECM will run out by the time the missile arrives), direction (if it's in
front of you ECM won't help jack squat), and even a bit of luck (sometimes it
will hit you anyway). For these reasons ECM is best deployed while someone is
trying to lock onto you. It lasts 5 seconds and needs 10 seconds to recharge.

Advantages over IR Flares:
+ Protects for a longer absolute duration (5 seconds versus 2 seconds).
  The magnitude of this bonus depends on whether or not the chopper moves from
  the flare area - generally it will - in case it doesn't, protection lasts
  a similar length.
+ Spoofs all enemy guided missiles (including laser designated ones).

Disadvantages:
- Because IR Flares are most often deployed a few seconds before the missile
  can hit, a chunk of missile locks don't result in pulling flares because they
  hit an obstacle along the way and explode. This is not true with ECM: to be
  safe you must pull on all semi-solid locks.
- Less reliable against missiles in the air: if you are traveling forward
  it must be sourced from behind, traveling backwards it must be somewhere in
  front of you.
- For the above reason it must be deployed before enemy AA gets a solid
  tone; smart enemies might hunt for weapons lock, force you to deploy ECM,
  and then wait patiently the five seconds needed to require (or just force you
  to waste it).

Guided Rocket (1st slot, 51000 points, pilot only)
The long-awaited second pilot weapon, Guided Rockets essentially increase the
accuracy of the pilot's primary armament, his rockets, by tacking on weak but
unjammable guided packages onto the previously unguided rockets. This
essentially increases their effective range out to gunner range, ensuring
almost total delivery against an enemy tank at twice the distance of the usual
unguided craft. Super effective against enemy AA guns, a long-range ground
attack adaptation. Note tht it doesn't actually go in the third slot.

TV Missile (3rd slot, 60000 points, gunner only)
The long-awaited second gunner weapon, this allows you to access direct-feed-
by-video missiles that can be launched and then manually guided to the target.
The balancing element against Guided Missiles is that, while unjammable, TV
Missiles are fast and slow-turning, making them fairly inaccurate. Still,
unless your team is doing laser designation, this is the better weapon of the
two, giving the gunner an extended range and a strong anti-tank punch. TV
Missiles can also do lethal damage to choppers, if you manage a hit; if you
miss, though, leave the station, as you won't be able to turn it fast enough to
get back on the helo.

TV missiles are set so that they point below the nose, and their bad turning
radius means that they need a bit of space besides. Keep that in mind.

Against enemy choppers, TV missiles are a one hit KO, although moving choppers
are a difficult target to hit. They are fairly accurate when fired at
relatively exposed non-moving tanks, and at close range on an attack run, with
a bit of luck, you can launch one directly into the tank for the kill (so long
as he's already disabled). They are the best counter to enemy AA, severely
weakening them and allowing your chopper to win the ensuing encounter.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
[3.06] Scout Helicopters

Scout helicopters fly a bit differently from transport helicopters and attack
helicopters, although if you know how to use those, you can get into a Scout
Helicopter and use it competently off-the-bat.

+ The Scout Helicopter is much fleeter on its feet, requiring less thrust to
  match attack helicopter manuveers (and far outstripping cumbersome transport
  helos).
+ It can take off from nuetral in about half the time of the other choppers.
+ Its yaw controls are greatly enhanced, allowing it to spin in a circle or
  arrest lateral movements much faster then the other choppers.
+ Like the transport helo, it can be repaired mid-flight by a passenger, a
  distinct advantage over attack helicopters.
+ Smaller airframe means a smaller target.
- Its roll controls, meanwhile, are far weaker, so you must remain conscious of
  your sideways motions (this also makes strafing next to impossible).
- You, the driver, are much easier to hit and kill with small-arms fire.
- It has significantly less health.
- It is significantly slower then the attack helicopter in terms of absolute
  speed (ae. pitching forward).

Between their high maneuverability and compact frame, scout helos are excellent
at ranges that any other helicopter would be cumbersome in. The biggest
advantage is when it comes to capping points. Without a tail rotor and with a
much smaller airframe, you can loft around in a tight circle or hover over a
point much, much easier then in any other helicopter, allowing you to cap flags
easily.

Another huge advantage is that it lands easily. It's hard to purposefully mess
up a landing on one of these birds; they're smaller, don't have an obtrusive
tail rotor, and bounce around more. I've sent them skidding sideways on the
ground in ways that no attack helo would survive, repairing as it bounces
along and then getting in again and taking off.

So, actually using Scout Helicopters. Its primary armament is its dual
miniguns, which, like rockets, point the same direction as the plane. This
armament and this fact (as well as its poor roll control) together mean
that its best mode of attack is making attack runs on the target, up close and
in their face. They shred infantry easily, but the gunner suffers a bit from
accuracy problems and you don't have a terribly large window of attack;
sometimes you may have to make a second run to finish a badly damaged enemy
soldier off.

Shooting the gun takes prediction. The I-bar is quite useful for determining
where your rounds are going, and a lot of the time you will have to make
adjustments to better hit the target.

Of all the vehicles, this is easily the one which you'll get shot out of and
have stolen most often. The pilot is just so frightfully exposed, the range so
small, and the speed so slow that it's hard to keep from taking damage from
small arms fire (and conversly, the landing so easy that it will often survive
the fall to be repaired and reflown). If you're taking hits, turn the chopper
around and head away so you can heal.

Against enemy vehicles: lightly armored jeeps are great targets, susceptible
to minigun fire, but requiring some prediction due to their high speed. Armored
vehicles like tanks can be damaged, but unless they are already on fire you
cannot possibly win, as your minigun sucks against armor. However, you CAN
swoop down and kill any engineers trying to repair. AA guns are the most
dangerous; avoid them like the plague.

Against enemy air vehicles: with Heat Seekers you are a palpable threat to
enemy helos and jets at good range. Because of the mechanics, you can defeat
an enemy attack helicopter at long range with Heat Seekers, so long as you
get the first shot. That's significant, as the Attack Helicopter is better then
you, at least if it has a gunner. Jets are more difficult to hurt, par
usual, because of their bloody speed; nonetheless if he has already spent his
flares and you can fire away, good for you! Another excellent strategy is to
combine Laser Pointer with Guided Missile; this will ohko other aircraft, but
you MUST keep your nose on them the whole time, which does expose you.

At close range, your miniguns are best. You can hurt or even disable a
close-flying jet, and duel it out with enemy scout helos. Against attack
helicopters he will probably win because he has twice your firepower,
nonetheless if the helo is distracted you can come in and really hurt 'em.

The bottom line is that Scout helicopters are powerful and can rip up other
vehicles up close, but must stay down to do damage, and their appearance on
some very crowded maps like Damavand Peak makes them difficult to use without
banging yourself against twenty different poles. Not to mention that they have
the most exposed pilot seat of any of the serious vehicles. This is the only
armored vehicle in which you can actually lose a firefight against foot
infantry, so try to actually keep away from crowded areas, and come in from
the sides.

Specializations
...............

IR Flares (2nd slot, 300 points)
Same as Attack helicopter.

Heat Seekers (3rd slot, 800 points)
Same as Attack helicopters.

Stealth (1st slot, 2500 points)
Same as Attack helicopters.

Belt Speed (1st slot, 4400 points)
Same as Autoloader on Attack helicopters.

Proximity Scan (1st slot, 7000 points)
Same as Attack helicopter, useless.

Air Radar (1st slot, 10000 points)
Same as Attack helicopters.

Extinguisher (2nd slot, 14000 points)
Same as Attack helicopter, however it's a noteworthy fact that Extinguisher
is helpful in scout helicopter-on-scout helicopter and scout helicopter-on-
attack helicopter fights, as it increases the damage they must deal to as
much as 150% of normal.

Maintanace (1st slot, 19000 points)
Same as Attack helicopters.

Guided Missile (3rd slot, 25000 points)
Same as Attack helicopters. See Laser painter below.

Below Radar (slotless, 32000 points)
Slotless, same as Attack helicopters.

Laser Painter (1st slot, 40000 points)
Allows you to paint targets for laser-guided missile hits. Besides excessive
amounts of teamwork, this is excellent for one reason: it can one-two with
guided missiles for a one-hit-ko on enemy choppers. They won't know what hit
them. Laser Painter + Guided Missile + Below Radar is op on Damavand Peak.

ECM Jammer (2nd slot, 48000 points)
Same as Attack helicopters.

Videos:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MVawkb5FA3s - look-see.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?NR=1&feature=endscreen&v=2TS_b-tXkHs - hehe.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
[3.07] Transport Helicopters

Transport helos are bigger, slower, and clunkier then Attack or Scout
helicopters. Their only armament is their side-mounted miniguns, and the pilot
can't do anything except pilot and deploy flares. You're a slow-moving and
juicy target for pretty much anything that can shoot up. Why put up with it,
then? Because transport helos are still excellent air platforms, not because of
their air capacities, which are minimal, but because of the fact that anyone
on the team can spawn on them. Flyby an enemy point and up to four passengers
can parachute out, paratroopers ready to nail the point. Despite its
deficiencies the minigun is still a decent weapon against enemy infantry, and
can seriously hurt inattentive attack helicopters as well. Finally, it has a
buttload of health, and can take two missile hits before getting disabled.

Transport helos sit five: a pilot, two gunners, and two side-sitting
passengers. Your plane can take a lot of punishment, and flares are already
provided to you; in addition the engineers on your vehicle can pop into the
last two seats and pull out the torch and repair the vehicle (although you have
to find the moving "hot spot" to do so), so you're actually quite difficult
to shoot down. Nonetheless you are not impregnable, and if you are taking
damage it's time to bail.

Often you have people making specific requests about where they want to land.
For instance, a sniper will get in who wants to get up on a hill to set up
SOFLAM. Honor those requests, that's the point of the transport helo. If
there isn't anything specific, just piggyback around the map, shooting at
things and dropping people off.

Speaking of dropping people off, you have to either dip down low or do a high
pass; if your altitude is in between, they will not survive the fall nor will
they be able to open their parachutes to glide down.

Videos:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m1FuYto-O1s - video tips
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rEV4lRQpgmo - a demonstration of survivability

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
[3.08] Jets

Jets are Battlefield 3's air superiority kings. They fly far faster then any of
the helicopters, chasing down and unloading into enemy air vehicles and ground
vehicles alike, keeping the skies free from enemy craft and freeing up boots
on the ground to concentrate on the objectives. Air dominance is easily
translated into ground dominance, and only incompletely countered by ground-
based anti-air.

Nonetheless, with their high speeds and narrow cockpits, jets are also the
most difficult vehicle, by far, to learn to use effectively. They have a very
steep learning curve, and it takes you a number of deaths to get the hang of
how exactly they work, and then a number more to use them effectively. For
this reason there is a smaller pool of competent jet pilots then there are
competents in helicopters and tanks.

The principal strength of a jet is its very high speed. A stationary target
will very, very rarely be able to hit you: guns are too inaccurate; homing
missiles need to be reloaded, a slow process for a fast vehicle; and even if
they do get a second shot off, you can often outrun it. Jets rule the skies,
dogfighting each other and taking out helicopters, but this comes at the price
of comparatively limited ground-support capacities.

Jets should prioritize fighting other jets, followed by helos of all stripes.
You need to avoid enemy anti-air guns as best as you can, as the Mobile AA is
the thing that, aside from other jets, will shoot you down the most. Other
then that, fill the in-between time with ground attack runs on enemy targets;
point your nose up, turn on free look, spot or follow an icon to a good target,
and then dive back down for it, guns blazing. If another jet comes up, though,
you need to be on it in an instant.

Jet on jet warfare
..................

The best counter to a jet is another jet. Because of their long learning curve,
you will get pilots of various competence in the air, from mediocre to steller.
This section is a quick rundown of the tactics of the latter in the complex
dogfighting dance.

There are three main factors in dogfights. The first is ALTITUDE. It's much
easier to spot and attack targets below you. When you dip up you slow down,
when you dip down you speed up. Finally, past a certain altitude you will reach
your service cealing and stall out, falling through the air in a way that will
render you utterly helpless against enemy jets.

The second is SPEED. Your vehicle is fully responsive up to a certain low
extent, past which you will begin to stall, and must work the engine again.
This is important in turning fights where you have to stay on your foe; if you
started faster then him, you might pass him. It is very much related to
altitude.

The third factor is DISTANCE. The closer you are to your foe, the more accurate
your shots will be, and the less predicting you will have to go, but in
correlation the more quickly you will have to respond to their evasive
manuveers to avoid getting thrown off. Distance can be increased or decreased
via speed.

The basic point is to get on your enemy's six, preferebly without their
cogniscence of it, and then rail him with your gun. You only really need a
disable - Extinguisher is rare and they probably won't get to land - but in
any case, finish them off if you can. Using the jet's cannon takes getting
used to. It requires a lot of prediction - very rarely will the shots arrive
on your target by the point they get there. You have to aim ahead a significant
amount, and the tracers help you do just that. It's important to get a feel for
the amount of compensation you have to make, and this will take a good number
of deaths before you get it down right.

A big part of dogfighting is getting close. It's easy enough when they're
in front of you - just punch afterburner to catch up with them, but it takes
good timing to get on the tail of an enemy jet that passes you front-to-back,
where you need to time your turn so you end up near them and ready to fire
away.

The first move to know is "falling in". You want to get on the enemy's six, but
often they are not already in front of you, so you have to make it so. Use the
afterburner to catch up with distant foes; with nearby foes, apply generous
amounts of brake. If they are heading any direction besides away from you, you
want them to pass you, and then fall in behind them, avoiding visual contact if
possible. For instance, if they are making a nearby ground-attack run in your
direction, time a hard turn so that when they pitch back up you are getting in
close behind them.

Distance between jets multiplies the amount of prediction and innacuracy of
your shots, but also gives you more time to react to their evasive manuveers,
so you need to get into the sweet spot, not too far and not too close, where you
can do great damage while also being extremely hard to shake off.

Once you have fallen in behind them and they know you're there, they will begin
to move evasively. Evasive manuveers consist of barrel rolls and sideways
turns, things that will be described a bit later. Your job is to not get shaken,
and get as good a shot as possible on your foe. When doing manuveers in general
you want to be in the chase camera; switch to cockpit view once you have a clear
view on your target.

Talking about evasive maneuvering: you have the best performance at around 300
airspeed, something that you can check with a quick peek in the cockpit counter,
but, like most other things, is better internalized. To execute a tight turn,
roll sideways, brake, and turn near 300 mph; faster and you start skidding,
slower and you risk stalling. In prolonged turns or turns out of attack runs or
whatnot, you will have to speed up and perhaps hit afterburner for a few seconds
to near this speed.

Then there are overhead rolls. Height has advantage of making you harder to see
and harder to hit from the ground, and the third dimension is important in
dogfights, flipping your position in enemy radars if they don't have visual
contact, and allowing you cut your speed drastically. Barrel rolls is backing
nosing all the way up and over, righting yourself, and then continuing on at
higher altitude. Remember that you have a service cealing.

If you are the jet being persued, you should know that only very rarely do you
actually manage to effect an escape from your enemy's clutches if they are
competent. With good evasive manuveers you can stall them, potentially for
minutes at a time, but it's very likely that in the end they will get you (I
remember one fight in particular where me and another duked it out in the air
for three straight minutes without actually landing any significant damage).
Instead you want to stall them, ground them in place so that help has time to
arrive and fire at the enemy. There are a number of factors to who and where
you get shot:

* Try and have both jets in the air at the same time if they have both been
  knocked down. You do NOT want one jet to get shot up by a 2-1 advantage, and
  then the other under the same conditions.
* Query your team on the location of the enemy Mobile AA. Moving the fight
  there and dropping altitude gives you a great advantage, as they will be
  forced to break off or risk death by Anti-Air Missiles and AA gun.
* The same effect can be achieved by flying over friendly-controlled territory;
  your team will not always respond, but often man-portable anti-air launchers
  and helicopters may come to your aid.
* Finally, you can wait for your wingman. While you are distacting the foe with
  your juicy behind, your teammate can get on HIS six and vicious-circle him to
  pieces.

If possible, it is often a good idea to move the fight to friendly territory.
Get a little clear of your foe, pop afterburner, and make them chase you into
your teammates' reach. When you know a jet is following you at a distance, move
the fight up close to your anti-air support - be it the friendly base or
whatever point the AA tank is sitting on. Barrel rolls in particular are an
excellent defensive 

The last element is Heat Seekers and Below Radar. If an enemy is using Heat
Seekers, remember that they must maintain direct contact for several seconds,
difficult and impractical to do in close-range dogfights. Heat Seekers are
mainly good for chasing down foes; it forces you or the opposing jet to pop
countermeasures, one, and fly low to activate Below Radar, two, which is
dangerous. Often you will be at such a high altitude that you won't have time to
get Below Radar and get blown to bits, especially if they (or you in the reverse
situation) are using Beam Scanning. Remember that flying low has its own
problems, exposing you to ground fire.

Jet on helicopter warfare
.........................

Helicopters are actually harder to hit then jets are, able to rotate around a
point far easier then jets can, and moving at a fraction of your speed. Taking
one down is a matter of being at a bit of range, braking down, and then
spamming your cannon at it, getting as close to stalling as you dare while you
hit them. Although you can make a second pass, the nature of the jet means that
it will be 10 seconds before you can make another run, by which time they might
have landed or repaired, or fled to hostile territory. Often the enemy helo
will chase you off with the threat of Heat Seekers. Be very wary of attacking
enemy helos head-on, however, as they are often equipped with Heat Seekers and
otherwise dangerous to your health. An important tactic to know when attacking
enemy helicopters is the close-range Heat Seeker launch, which can be done with
and is lethal to both vehicles. Basically, get very close with a Heat Seeker
lock, and then launch; they will not have time to push flares before it hits.
The fact that ECM completely negates this tactic is one of its benefits; with
Flares, the counter is to flare before he gets a full lock. Know that well.

The other thing to note is that the gunner can actually do significant damage
to your vehicle, even disabling it with good aim. The way to avoid this is to
never make slow turns in his vicinity, exposing your broad backside and
decreasing the protection that your speed gives you. You can also take hits
while making a front-and-up attack on the helo, making that angle more
dangerous, although you won't take as much damage as with what is described
above. After making an attack run, duck down, hit afterburner, and get far
away and Below Radar quickly.

Your gun is better against enemy helicopters from a distance, but up close and
with some skill, Rocket Pods actually do significant damage. You do have to
account for the fact that they fire a bit above the cursor, however.
Personally I mainly use them for long-range maiming before gunning up close;
I often get one to three hits per pack from a distance.

Good evasive manuveers on his part may shake you a while, but in the end, you
have a distinct advantage over a helicopter, bar luck, skill, or other
intervention.

Ground attacks
..............

MBTs should be your primary ground target when the air is clean of enemy jets
and/or helos. The first step of the attack is to spot one, which you can do
by nosing up and free looking, or just approaching the battlefield from a
distance and pressing Q where there aught to be tanks. Once you have a target
lit up, nose down and aim for the enemy. Your best angle of attack is 45
degrees; hit the brakes to reduce airspeed so you get more quality time with
your target. Using your A and D keys for minute adjustments for his movements,
send off a barrage of rockets into your foe, following up with your cannon
while the rockets are reloading. A well-aimed rocket pack will disable the
enemy tank, but generally you will not have enough time to destroy it outright,
unless it has already been damaged. High altitude dives might get the time to
send off two rocket packs, which, on a good run, WILL give you a destroy.

Rocket Pods are the best against enemy ground assets. Guided Missiles are just
as good but only if they do not have IR Smoke; if they do, they are tantamount
to useless, their one benefit being the ability to hit enemy jeeps much easier
(well and SOFLAM locks, but again without IR Smoke). Heat Seekers cannot attack
ground targets, obviously. Some people like to use Guided Missiles for the
infared capacity - spotting infantry and then nosing down to fit at individual
soldiers. This is difficult to do, as they're small targets and you have a
small window of attak.

If you've ever nosed down out of a steep dive you'll know that it takes two or
so seconds for the rockets and gunfire to actually go where your pointer says
it will go. You need to let the circle indicating the drag of the shots center
on the I-beam, giving you acccurate fire. This is caused by air drag, as the
jet stream around your craft takes a couple of seconds to stabalize.

And, as always, stationary vehicles are easier to hit then moving ones; you
will end up engaging both.

Jet on mobile AA warfare
........................

The biggest problem with Mobile Anti-Air guns is that its primary armament
lacks accuracy at longer range, being a lot less accurate then helicopter
gunner round, as mentioned above, as well as anything a jet fields, as
mentioned here. At high altitudes he can't Anti-Air Missile you either, so the
best way to deal with mobile AA guns is to get up high (best if he doesn't
notice), dive down, brake, and spam everything you have; don't go to low, and
pull up if he gets missile lock, punching afterburner and deploying flares or
ECM, flying back out of range and then dipping back down again for another
pass. Like tanks, you probably won't be able to destroy, only disable, but that
matters as well, with your jet looming over his head.

You can also destroy it with more conventional tactics through brute force; two
back-to-back runs by jets, or assistance by a helo, will overwhelm and destroy
the AA gun in most cases. The above tactic only works if the enemy doesn't have
their own jets in the air, of course. Coordinating tank strikes with your
wingman is a great way to get ahead in the game.

VSTOL jets
..........

VSTOL jets basically consists of the F-35. It has the ability to enter VSTOL
mode, hovering over a spot while slowly moving, acting in all regards like a
helicopter but without vertical control. Once you've had enough
of hover mode - mainly used for ground attacks against tanks and such - you
punch out, letting go of S and returning to normal jet flight. The F-35 pays
for this ability to take off and land in place and to hover over a spot by
being substantially slower then normal jets, although it is able to make a
sharper turn as well as land to repair much easier.

Ground attack jets
..................

Ground attack jets, mount an extra-large single-barrel cannon that does
souped-up damage to pretty much everything, but especially enemy tanks. A good
A-10 Thunderbolt run can actually destroy an MBT thanks to the higher damage
output (and a slower speed that allows a longer run). They are, on the other
hand, much slower, and only appear in a few specific Rush maps - never
alongside jets proper.

Overall, ground attack jets are just slower, clunkier jets with a stronger
cannon and without an afterburner. Use them as you would a regular old jet.

Specializations
...............

IR Flares (2nd slot, 300 points)
Described in detail in Attack helicopters.

Heat Seekers (3rd slot, 700 points)
The Jet Heat Seekers have a smaller target zone and fire slower then those of
the other platforms, a product of the jet's high speed. They are most useful
in long-range jet warfare and for close-range anti-helo attacks (sans ECM).
Against enemy jets, you should fire one, wait for the countermeasures, then
fire the other; the resulting disable is almost always enough, as jets are
very difficult to land, and a disabled jet is an easy target for your main gun.

Stealth (1st slot, 1500 points)
Described in detail in Attack helicopters.

Belt Speed (1st slot, 2700 points)
Described in detail in Attack helicopters.

Proximity Scan (1st slot, 4200 points)
Described in detail in Attack helicopters, useless.

Rocket Pods (3rd slot, 6200 points)
This adds secondary unguided rockets exactly like the Attack helicopter pilot's
primary armament. Between Heat Seekers and Guided Missiles, this is the in-
betweener, able to hit both aircraft and ground vehicles for heavy damage, but
not as adapted for the anti-air and anti-ground, respectively, role that the
other two weapon choices are. Rocket Pods are the most commonly used weapon
for their multirole usefulness.

Air Radar (1st slot, 8600 points)
Much more useful on a Jet then on an Attack helicopter, I have a hard time
flying without this. It expands your minimap and includes nearby enemy air
vehicles, showing their position and direction relative to you; this is
essential for close-range dogfighting, where you can lose visual contact as the
aggressor or not know wether you've shook them off or not as the fleeing jet,
it warns you about approaching enemies before they start firing at you, and it
gives you situational awareness of what's in the air.

Extinguisher (2nd slot, 11600 points)
Described in detail in Attack helicopters. Probably a bit more useful because a
good percentage of the time enemy jets will disable you and leave you, allowing
you to sneak off to repair.

Below Radar (slotless, 32000 points)
Described in detail in Attack helicopters. Less useful on jets, as you will
have a much more difficult time flying a paltry 20 meters above the surface
without crashing, but it still serves an important purpose - so long as the
surface is smooth and you don't crash.

Maintenance (1st slot, 19000 points)
Described in detail in Attack helicopters.

Guided Missile (3rd slot, 24000 points)
A decent ground-attack piece, it's useless against IR Smoke but devestating
against everything else, and has the benefit of hitting SOFLAM targets. Note
that it has a special HUD; it points to where your plane is pointed, but the
suddent switchover to black-and-white can be disorienting.

Beam Scanning (1st slot, 29000 points)
Cuts Heat Seekers lock-on time from three seconds to one second. If you're
partial to Heat Seekers, this is for you, as it allows significantly faster
firing. Also works for Guided Missiles.

EMC Jammer (2nd slot, 35000 points)
Described in detail in Attack helicopters. Jet ECM performs similarly except
that it fares more poorly against already-launched missiles, do to poorer
coverage and your high speed (the missile takes longer to reach you and may
miss the chafe cloud completely). Even more important to pop early then with
helicopters.

[4] Vehicular destruction
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
[4.01] Damage chart

Keep in mind that "armored vehicle" tends to mean more for IFVs and AA guns and
less for better-armored MBTs.

Weapon: M240 LMG
Mounts: Coaxial machine gun on IFVs and MBTs
Damage: Only damages infantry, ~25 damage per bullet.

Weapon: .50 Browning/KORD
Mounts: Light vehicles, remote gunner on IFVs and MBTs
Damage: Only damages lightly armored vehicles and aircraft; does not affect
        enemy armor. ~4 damage per bullet to vehicles, ~30 to infantry.

Weapon: Heavy Machine Gun
Mounts: MBT coaxial HMG
Damage: ~10 damage per bullet to light vehicles, ~40 per bullet to infantry,
        does not affect armored, ~6 per bullet to air vehicles.

Weapon: Minigun
Mounts: Gunner positions on a transport helo, Scout helicopter (double),
        Anti-air Gun, Stationary AA Platform, Jet (double)
Damage: Everything. ~4 damage per bullet to light vehicles, 1 to armored
        vehicles, ~20 per bullet to infantry. (note: all past here hurt all)

Weapon: Autocannon
Mounts: Attack helicopter gunner
Damage: Lethal contact to infantry (decent radius), ~15 per shell to light
        vehicles, ~4 to armored vehicles.

Weapon: Unguided rockets
Mounts: Attack helicopters, jets
Damage: Lethal contact to infantry (decent radius), ~20 per rocket to light
        vehicles, ~5 per rocket to armored vehicles.

Weapon: High energy anti-tank (HEAT) chain-shot
Mounts: IFVs
Damage: Lethal contact to infantry (decent radius), ~25 per shell to light
        vehicles, ~5 per shell to armored vehicles.

Weapon: Armor-Piercing Fin-stabilized Discarding-Sabot Tracer Rounds (APFSDS-T)
Mounts: IFVs
Damage: Lethal contact to infantry (no blast radius), ~25 per shell to light
        vehicles, ~8 per shell to armored vehicles.

Weapon: Heat Seekers
Mounts: Jets, Mobile AA, Attack helicopters, Scout helicopters, Man-portable
        anti-aircraft launchers
Shoots: Only aircraft
Damage: ~50 to jets, attack helicopters, scout helicopters, ~30 to ground-
        attack jets and transport helicopters.

Weapon: Guided Missile/Shell (non-laser)
Mounts: MBTs, IFVs, Jets, Attack helicopters, Scout helicopters, FIM-9 Javelin
Shoots: Only ground vehicles, + MAV and visible ground equipment
Damage: ~30 to armored vehicles, ~75 to lightly armored vehicles

Weapon: Guided Missile/Shell (laser designated)
Mounts: Same as above
Shoots: Laser-designated vehicles
Damage: ~50 to armored vehicles, 100 to all aircraft and lightly armored
        vehicles

Weapon: Anti-tank guided missile (ATGM)
Mounts: IFV, Stationary AT Guns
Damage: Lethal contact to infantry (poor blast radius), ~20 to armored
        vehicles, ~50 to lightly armored vehicles and air vehicles

Weapon: TV Missile
Mounts: Attack helicopter gunner
Damage: Lethal contact to infantry (poor blast radius), ~60 to armored
        vehicles, destroys enemy air assets

Weapon: Smoothbore cannon
Mounts: MBT
Damage: Lethal contact to infantry (decent blast radius), ~30 to light armored
        vehicles (ae. IFVs), ~20 to other MBTs, ~50 to light vehicles

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
[4.02] Other vehicles and bullets

This one's quite obvious. Vehicles can destroy one another: that's a fact. The
topic is explored in more depth in the sections above.

Small-arms fire may ricochet off of armored vehicles, but it can hurt and kill
the driver, pilot, or gunners. If they are exposed, as in light vehicles, they
are easy enough to attack: aim well and empty a clip and hope you get the kill
(it usually takes more then one clip, however).

Some vehicles are a bit more difficult to shoot at the driver from, but still
possible. HUMVEES and their Russian counterparts have windshields that are
mostly immune to small arms fire, but can still be penetrated by good aim or
sniper rifles.

Air vehicles are similarly covered, but can be shot at. Attack helicopter
pilots and gunners can be shot down by a headshot from a ground-based sniper,
although this is a difficult shot indeed. The same holds true for Transport
helicopters. Scout helicopter pilots aren't nearly so protected, and because
they fly closer, their pilots are especially vulnerable to this sort of thing.
Transport helo gunners and passengers can be shot at as well, as they are
exposed on the doors; a lucky RPG shot can clear out that component.

More common then lucky sniper shots, however, is hitting the other pilot or
gunner in the noggin. For instance, a jet attack a side-facing transport
helo will likely shoot at and kill its gunners. Attack helicopter duels have
abruptly ended with the gunner shooting the other gunner or pilot in the head,
and even simultaneous gunner deaths.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
[4.04] AT Rocket launchers

Unguided rocket launchers pack a punch, but have limited distance capacity
because they are, well, unguided. They make up for this difficultly by being
impossible to redirect and by being useful against infantry. As such AT rocket
launchers are best used against enemy MBTs and IFVs; you can try to hit a low
flying chopper, but you won't be likely to get a hit. Each AT rocket does as
much damage as an MBT shot, but has a longer reload, exposes you to enemy fire
(as the slower-moving missile is relatively easy to see from its smoke path),
and can occasionally miss when shooting moving targets. Nonetheless AT rockets
are the most reliable way for boots on the ground to shoot out a tank.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
[4.05] Heat Seeker Rocket Launchers

Heat-seeking rockket launchers are the guided counterparts to AT Rocket
launchers. They fall into two categories: The Stinger and IGLA heat seeking
anti-air missiles, and the FIM-90 Javelin anti-tank rocket launcher.

The two anti-air launchers are short-radius lock-on launchers that are useful
for area defense, but, quite honestly, rarely actually kill anything. Air
vehicles can duck behind cover or otherwise move fast enough to counter one and
then evade the other missile, and it doesn't help that the one missile you can
fire merely disables, not destroys. Still it's good at point defense, forcing
that meddlesome chopper to evade you. Although they'll generally evade out of
the way, you can still limit their air support's usefulness by bothering it to
no end.

FIM-90 Javelins are the land counterpart to this. These are missiles that lock
onto and stream for enemy tanks. Although Javelins do damage equivalent to
unguided AT rockets at a greater accuracy and at longer range, they are easily
defeated by IR Smoke, a distinct disadvantage. They also have a long lock-on
sequence, which limits their usefulness at close range (where you can duck
out, shoot at AT rocket, duck back down to reload, and repeat), and you get
fewer missiles. They DO have the ability to fire at laser-designated targets,
an important advantage that is discussed later in this guide.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
[4.06] AT Mines and C4

AT Mines and C4 are two proximity-based explosives. Rather then being propelled
by a rocket, they must be set in place. AT Mines are an Engineer piece of
equipment and C4 is Support equipment; both are capable against vehicles and
both will be explained here.

AT Mines are a set of six land mines that can be dropped onto the ground. If
a vehicle passes over them, it will blow up, damaging or destroying the enemy
vehicle. If it's a light vehicle, the vehicle and all its occupants are
instantly killed; armored vehicles are disabled.

AT Mines are best placed in shady spots of the map or around corners, so as to
best avoid detection. They are fairly visible, and vulnerable to any
explosives, so a tank cannon can clear them out easily. AT Mines can also be
spotted, which will point them out to potential enemy meat for removal. The
best places to put them is over ditches in the road, where the enemy tank is
less liable to see them.

Removal can be done by any explosive, an Engineer or EOD bot (which can pick
them up but not set them down again), sniper rounds, and 12 guage slugs on
shotguns. You can only deploy six at a time, and they disappear 20 seconds
after death. Because they take up your torch slot, AT Mines are best for
standalone Engineers who will be using their gun a lot more then actual
vehicles.

Thermal Optics allows tanks to easily see and shoot your mines; keep that in
mind.

C4, meanwhile, is like an AT Mine with higher strength and a fuse. You can
stick it to any surface in the game (except for MAVs, to prevent an exploit)
and it does crazy damage when it explodes, destroying a full health tank in
one blow as long as you get down three charges. This is the best close-range
anti-tank weapon in the game: shit C4, run away, blow them up. They'll be
notified they've been C4'd because "Press [R] to pick up" will appear on
their screen. Currently, C4 persists, but this will be removed next patch so
that dying removes C4.

The second use is for car bombing. Grab a jeep, strap it down with C4, and then
ride it into a tank and blow. The problem is that if any of your explosives are
shot you will blow up instead, so this is always a risky strategy.

You can also use it to lay traps; drop it on a road you're watching, for
instance, and wait for a tank to dwadle through.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
4.06 Repair Tool

The Repair Tool doesn't just repair, but it can be used to attack enemy tanks
as well. The torch damages vehicles just as fast as it repairs, emitting red
sparks. Your primary concern, besides getting close enough, is if the tank
has a gunner; he can easily pop out and kill you and then get back in if he
does. If he doesn't, but the tank is not disabled, he will notice he's losing
health, back up, and shoot you (if he has room). If he's disabled and gunner-
less, he'll have to pop out of the tank, and you can then get in and take it
from there. This works best when they walk into a trap; then you have the space
to repair your vehicle. Usually, though, it's last-ditch suicidal.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
4.07 Laser designation

Laser designation is a mechanic that I have put off describing for too long.
Basically, you have one piece of equipment that designates targets with a
laser. This laser designator emits a bright red light, clearly visible to the
target and those near him (this is a balancing mechanic). Once it has locked on
it will track the target until it goes out of range of hides behind something.

Meanwhile, anyone with a laser-compatible weapon will see a bright red diamond
appear on their screen, telling them they have laser lock for a target. You
can fire off a missile at it from anywhere on the map, so long as it is in
range, and yes that means from behind buildings or cover or whatnot - you don't
need direct visual contact.

These missiles follow a top-attack pattern, flying off above the target before
zooming down to smash the lightly armored vehicle top. Because the missile
requires double the manpower, it is twice as powerful as a normal missile,
disabling a tank and destroying enemy aircraft outright.

What can laser designate:
SOFLAM - A piece of sniper equipment that a good team will set up on a high
mountaintop or otherwise high, covered position to designate anything motoring
or flying by.

CITV - The third seat in the tank, CITV can use thermal optics and a mounted
version of SOFLAM. Mainly used in combination with Guided Shells, the driver
upgrade that can shoot laser-designated missiles.

Laser Painter - Available for Attack helicopters and Scout helicopters,
this paints the enemy AS LONG AS your nose is pointed towards them. Used in
conjunction with Guided Missiles, which are laser designation capable.

What can fire at laser designated targets:
FIM-90 Javelin - Along with the SOFLAM, this is the second part o the one-two
boots on the ground laser designation kit.

Guided Shells - Combined with CITV, this allows a tank team to independently
designate and destroy all vehicular targets.

Guided Missiles (IFVs) - Like Guided Shells, but without CITV it's less
useable, requiring good SOFLAM for the most part.

Guided Missiles (Attack helicopters, Scout helicopters) - On these two
platforms, much like the tank, Laser designator and Guided Missiles combined
make for a great force. It does have to issue of stranding you in one position,
however. With the Scout helicopter you can both designate and shoot with one
person, the only thing in the game that can do that.

Guided Missiles (Jets) - Allows them to get in on the laser designated action,
but, like IFVs, it doesn't come with a supplementary designation module.

What defends against laser designation:
IR Smoke - Blocks laser view of the target, causing missiles to fly off target.

ECM Jammer - Breaks designation by breaking lock, befuzzles missiles as well
but only if they fly through the particle stream.

Cover - if the laser designation unit can't see it, you can't shoot it, it's as
simple as that.

Laser designation is a powerful tool, and good teams know how to use it well.

PATCH CHANGES:
Flares now distract laser weaponry. Translation: lasers have been nerfed.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
[5.00] Setups

This section will discuss strategic mix-and-matching of specializations by
vehicle type, showing setups that have specific goals in mind. Your setup will
often be more jumbled.

Main Battle Tanks
.................

Slot 1:                 Slot 2:                Slot 3:            Permanent:
Autoloader              IR Smoke               Coaxial LMG        CITV Station
Maintenance             Zoom Optics            Coaxial HMG
Proximity Scan          Thermal Optics         Guided Shells
Thermal Camo                                   Canister Shot
Reactive Armor

Anti-infantry:
Driver: Reactive Armor, Thermal Optics, Coaxial LMG or Canister Shot
Gunner: Proximity Scan

This is a setup for dense, infantry-heavy maps where you will see more rockets
and C4 than other tanks (think anything in B2K). Proximity Scan is a must: if
you don't have a gunner with it, swap Reactive Armor for Proximity. Coaxial LMG
is better for pure anti-infantry, but Canister Shot has the additional
advantage of beinng able to ward off air vehicles.

Anti-tank:
Driver: Autoloader, IR Smoke, Guided Shells
CITV/Gunner: Proximity Scan

This is an absolutely beast setup that will trump any other single vehicle in
the game. I've gone through games where a single tank with three skilled
players in with this setup have capped and then held a point, blowing up four
helos, ten tanks, and a jet along the way.

Infantry Fighting Vehicles
..........................

Slot 1:                 Slot 2:                Slot 3:
Belt Speed              IR Smoke               Coaxial LMG
Maintenance             Zoom Optics            ATGM Launcher
Proximity Scan          Thermal Optics         APFSDS-T Shell
Thermal Camo                                   Guided Missile
Reactive Armor

Anti-infantry:
Driver: Reactive Armor, Thermal Optics, Coaxial LMG
Gunner: Proximity Scan

Pretty much the same as the MBT setup, except that IFVs are far better
adapted for this role. If you don't have a dedicated gunner (as happens, well,
most of the time), swap Reactive Armor for Proximity Scan.

Anti-tank:
Driver: Belt Speed, IR Smoke, ATGM Launcher or APFSDS-T Shell or Guided Missile
Gunner: Maintenance

IFV suffers from no lack of variety as to how it guns down enemy vehicles, with
three different options, all effective against ground vehicles. Lacking a CITV,
however, it must rely on other sources against helicopters, and will generally
be outmatched by air power.

Mobile anti-air
...............

Slot 1:                 Slot 2:                Slot 3:
Belt Speed              IR Smoke               Anti-air missiles
Maintenance             Zoom Optics
Proximity Scan          Thermal Optics
Reactive Armor

No specific setups here - always use the anti-air missiles though, the other
weapons, well, don't exist ;).

Attack helicopters
..................

Slot 1:                 Slot 2:                Slot 3:
Autoloader              IR Flares              Heat Seekers Pilot
Stealth                 Thermal Optics Gunner  Guided Missile Gunner
Maintenance             Zoom Optics Gunner     TV Missile Gunner
Proximity Scan          Extinguisher           
Air Radar               ECM Jammer Pilot
Laser Painter
Guided Rockets Pilot

Permanent:
Below Radar

Anti-everything:
Pilot: Stealth, ECM Jammer, Heat Seekers
Gunner: Autoloader, Thermal Visor, TV Missile

This is the best "general" setup and can counter any and all threats. Sub in
IR Flares for ECM Jammer if you haven't unlocked yet.

Anti-air:
Pilot: Stealth, ECM Jammer, Heat Seekers
Gunner: Air Radar, Zoom Optics, TV Missile

This is the setup for someone consistently getting shot down by jets; don't let
it happen again (but to reiterate: not really recommended).

Long-range:
Pilot: Guided Rockets, ECM Jammer, Heat Seekers
Gunner: Air Radar, Zoom Optics or Thermal Optics, TV Missile

This is a setup that allows you to sit back and have the gunner shoot enemy
infantry all to hell, supported by rocket fire against enemy tanks and the best
counter to enemy anti-aircraft guns.

General 2:
Pilot: Laser Painter, ECM Jammer, Heat Seekers
Gunner: Stealth, Thermal Visor, Guided Missile

This is a modified version of the most common setup, using a combination of
laser painterand guided missiles in the Heat Seeker role (in addition to
regular old Heat Seekers).

Scout helicopters
.................

Slot 1:                 Slot 2:                Slot 3:
Stealth                 IR Flares              Heat Seekers
Belt Speed              Extinguisher           Guided Missile
Maintenance             ECM Jammer
Proximity Scan
Air Radar
Laser Painter

Permanent:
Below Radar

General:
Belt Speed or Stealth, IR Flares or ECM Jammer, Heat Seekers

This is the most common setup, and is able to deal with a range of targets.

Laser-designated:
Laser Painter, IR Flares or ECM Jammer, Guided Missile

This is the more specialized set that gives up Stealth or Belt Speed for
independent laser-guided weaponry, fantastic against other helicopters relying
on flares and Heat Seekers - which, as pointed out above, are the most common
kind.

Jets
....

Slot 1:                 Slot 2:                Slot 3:
Stealth                 IR Flares              Heat Seekers
Belt Speed              Extinguisher           Rocket Pods
Maintenance             ECM Jammer             Guided Missile
Proximity Scan
Air Radar
Beam Scanning

Permanent:
Below Radar

Most common:
Air Radar, IR Flares, Rocket Pods

Air superiority:
Air Radar, IR Flares or ECM Jammer, Heat Seekers

This is the air superiority fighter.

Ground-attack:
Belt Speed, IR Flares or ECM Jammer, Rocket Pods or Guided Missile

This is the ground-attack variety.

Long-range air superiority:
Beam Scanning, IR Flares or ECM Jammer, Heat Seekers

[6.00] Maps
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------

In general, Conquest involves individual vehicular efforts centered around
team objectives, while Rush involves a smaller number of vehicles that are all
the more important for support, the most of precious of resources for an
attacking team. Good players coordinate on both modes, but Rush generally
involves more careful, well-ordered gameplay, as one doesn't want to blow their
support.

Caspian Border
..............

Conquest:
A vehicle-heavy map with MBTs, Mobile AA, Jets, an Attack helicopter, and tons
of light vehicles and stationary guns.

The first and last points spawn tanks on this map, which are often forgotten by
inobservant teams. The A to C/E line is the most direct path on the map and is
often tank central; if you hold a point along this line you should have tanks
defending it, and if you don't, cap it, because either point directly overlooks
the road out of spawn and not holding it will make deployment difficult and
especially ham the AA tank. The D/C points in the center of the map, the hill
and the ditch, are comparatively shady areas that shouldn't be encroached by
tanks because of high exposure and lots of cover for engineers with rocket
launchers (not to mention the akwardness of getting there in the first place).
The final point, B/E, is a highway depot of sorts more easily held by the
American team than Russian one, and is often a patch of tank warfare. Helos
should have a field day overflying C and D, which are often populated on foot
and rarely by armor.

Rush:
Obviously smaller then the Conquest version, containing a couple of tanks on
either side and a ground-attack jet on either side, as well as a jeep or two.
Vehicle status remains static. The Ground Attack jets are frightfully
overpowered, and will smash through tanks like crazy, but can't do much else.

Damavand Peak
.............

Conquest:
A few HUMVEE-type light vehicles and one tank and Scout heli on either side.
Scout helis usually end up trolling in the other side's base, as they cannot
fight in the tunnel. Best map for thermal view for MBTs, as the tunnel is very
dimly lit. A successful scout heli drop can steal enemy armor and their scout
helo and back-capture a point, which is very powerful, however the helos spawn
a long way back and it's a walk to get there.

Rush:
There's a scout helicopter given to the attacking team at the beginning of the
game, but it's quite easily brought down and stolen, leading to a lot of flip-
flopping: probably more effective to use it as a dropship, really. There's also
a HUMVEE for the attackers that's useful for getting troops to the point
quickly; never leave without a full HUMVEE, and watch out for well-placed AT
Mines - avoid entirely following the road in.

The second point is fought over by Scout Helicopter granted to both teams and
by an attacking Transport Helo. The Transport Helo is a powerhouse unit; if
given room to keep itself airbourne, it can no only score a few kills but
airdrop troopers onto the roofs and even right on top of the point, giving your
team a significant advantage (getting to the roofs is difficult on defense).
Conversely, the defensive Scout helo should do as much as possible to keep
the Transport Helo at bay.

The third point is located inside a tunnel, and is one of the few places in
the game where Thermal Optics is perhaps more useable than IR Smoke. This area
is occupied by campy tank warfare - lots of boots on the ground, both fighting
and repairing, lots of hits and counter-hits that are immediately repaired
away. Makes for very confused fighting. The Scout helicopters still spawn but
this is more amusing than effective - you can either fly across the mountain
for the sole purpose of harrassing the other helo, or edge into the tunnel and
turn it into a vulnerable mobile gun platform.

The final point is like the second, except with tanks insead of the transport
helo, which makes it harder to pull off.

Grand Bazaar
............

Conquest:
A few light vehicles and a sole IFV to either side. IFVs cannot access the
center of the map, and so often end up making rushes towards enemy points,
sometimes successfuly, sometimes no so much. This is a very open map but with a
lot of nooks and crannies to hide in, so if you're in an IFV, abuse your speed.
Also, the armored jeeps are more useful than they immediately appear to be.

Rush:
MBTs only at the very end: otherwise, no real vehicular warfare.

Kharg Island
............

Conquest:
Another vehicle-heavy map, with everything but IFVs represented. Tanks will be
scattered about all over the low-lyng area of the map - excepting the
mountainside point, vehicular warfare is ubiquitous. Scout Helicopters should
concentrate on clearing infantry from around that point, since they're at their
most vulnerable on this map. Tanks are everywhere. AA tanks should be camped
out at the nearest held friendly point. Attack helos are dangerous, but there's
not as much air cover as on other maps, so they're relatively more fragile,
too.

Rush:
This map is honestly unfair to attackers, who have to slowly wade through enemy
missiles to get anywhere near the initial points. Best to establish "base
camps" and move from there. Lots of IFVs, a tank or two, and each side gets
a ground-attack plane, which must achieve dominance at all costs; the team that
wins is the one that is better able to keep its Ground-Attack Plane supported
by AA fire both from the ground and from the attack-spawning Attack Helicopter.

Towards the end it is mostly MBTs. The AMTRAC is crucial for attackers; defend
it at all costs!

Noshahr Canals
..............

Rush:
At the beginning the USMC is given AMTRACs, a few boats, and a Scout Helicopter
and Transport Helo, while the Russian defenders get a Mobile AA and mostly
useless Vodnik. As the game progresses tanks become involved. The last points
are spearheaded mainly by the AMTRAC on offense and the AA Tank on defense.

Conquest:
In Conquest this map hosts a jet, an attack helicopter, an IFV, and a MBT on
both sides, as well as an AMTRAC on the American side. This is one of the close
quarters maps, but significant vehicular combat occurs as well; for this reason
it is best to mount anti-vehicle weapons while assisting friendlies in thrusts.

Seine Crossing
..............

Rush:
An intensely urban map with a single IFV on both sides for support. Best
mounted with anti-infantry specializations, as that is basically what you will
be fighting.

Conquest:
An equally intense urban fight where having an infantry-oriented MBT and a
team of engineers doing repairs is pretty much key. Each side gets an MBT and
an Armored Jeep.

Tehran Highway
..............

Rush:
This is an intensely confusing map, a nighttime environment with both plenty
of nooks for launchers as well as other vehicles. Tanks are central to attacks,
but don't get too cocky.

Conquest:
A strategic nightmare to figure out what's going on on.

Operation Firestorm
...................

Conquest:
An enormous map that is what most people think of when they think vehicles,
along with Caspian Border. Each team gets two jets, an attack helicopter,
Mobile AA, a Transport helicopter, an assortment of MBTs and a couple of jeeps.
Vehicular combat galore, and watch out for SOFLAM atop the mountains.

Rush:
Rush on Operation Firestorm is a pain. It rarely goes beyond the first point,
because there is a large, open expanse that must be crossed in a limited number
of vehicles, followed by a heavy industrial complex which is full of defending
claymores, shotties, and the like. If you're defending, set up for duck season;
if you are attacking, do your best to bring down the enemy tanks and clear out
the sniper-filed dunes. Recons with Radio Beacons are essential, as it is by
far the best way to get to the point. Each side gets a Ground-attack jet, a
few jeeps, a couple of MBTs.

Operation Metro
...............

Conquest and Rush: No vehicles. Rush is a good map, but conquest is widely
agreed upon to be the worst map version in the history of Battlefield, not-so-
affectionately known as "The Meat Grinder" for the grenade-slugging hopeless
melee it usually dissolves into.

Gulf of Oman
............

Conquest Assault:
This map has the distinction of having the most vehicles at once of any map,
ever. At deployment teams will pile into one attack helicopter, one transport
helo, four jets, four main battle tanks, and five Infantry Fighting Vehicles.
Fighting is generally disorganized by the sheer weight of the map. A good
tactic is to set up along a choke point - especially the railroad lines along
the center - and attack anything heading your way from there at the beginning.

The problem with this map is that if one team gets a supermajority of points,
the other is screwed by the sheer weight of the vehicle support the enemy team
will be generating.

Sharqi Peninsula
................

Conquest Assault:
Another crowded map, like all of the B2K ones. contains an attack helicopter
and an assortment of MBTs and IFVs. Infantry-capacity recommended on this
confusing, close-ranged map. Helicopters have a tendency to get camped like
crazy.

Strike at Karkland
..................

Conquest Assault:
This map can be very fun with balanced teams. The problem is that US gets
protected vehicle spawns while Russia gets them behind the G flag; if the US
team managed to capture G, as often happens with jeep rushes, they get double
vehicle spawns, and the unprotected position also often results in stolen
tanks. For this reason I recommend the RU team use their starting IFV to
safeguard the F and G points, preventing jeep breaches and discouraging the
tactic. Other then that, anti-infantry setups are essential, as this is a very
dense map.

Wake Island 2014
................

Conquest Assault:
In my opinion this is the best map that came out of the B2K expansion. The RU
team gets a smaller number of armored vehicles, lacking an AMTAC, but this is
balanced out by the fact that the F-35s are at a distinct disadvantage when
it comes to air superiority against the Su-35 Flanker-Es. The best plan is to
airdrop people in the center with the transport helo, then hold onto that while
backcapping the other flags. A coherent line of flags is important for both
teams; an unbroken line pervents breakouts and strengthens your line along one
front instead of two. The Airfield is the most important objective and should
be protected at all costs - that is where the AA tank, two jets, and a helo
spawn!

Rush:
A mixed bag of treats involving long distances and a transport helos, MBTs,
AMTACs, Mobile AA and Attack helicopters. The idea is to inch the AMTRAC as
close forward as you dare.

[7.00] Other stuff
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
[7.01] Point values and service stars

You get points for performing actions in vehicles; the following list contains
the vehicle-related point values. Getting points in vehicles counts towards
that vehicle and towards your rank.

100 Points - Enemy killed
50 Points - Suppression assist
X Points - Kill Assist, where X is the percent damage you dealt (min 50). You
           can get kill assists at any damage value if the person who got the
           kill is in the same vehicle.
100 Points - Vehicle disabled
50 Points - Vehicle destroyed
X Points - Vehicle destroy assist (X being the amount of damage, min 10)
10 Points - Repair
20 Points - Squad Repair
20 Points - Explosives Destroyed
10 Points - Laser Designation
X Points - Designated Target Hit, X being the amount of damage dealt.
10 Points - Driver Assist, your passenger gets a kill
20 Points - Squad Driver Assist
10 Points - Passenger Assist, your driver gets a kill
20 Points - Squad Passenger Assist
20 Points - Equipment Destroyed, blow up a piece of enemy squad equipment
10 Points - Roadkill, in addition to 100 regular kill points

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
[7.02] Ribbons and medals

Ribbons
.......
Ribbons are higher-point pieces that are awarded after achieving a certain
bonus or action multiple times in a round. They count toward rank, but do not
count towards the vehicle.

Disable Vehicles Ribbon - In a round, disable four vehicles
Ties into Vehicle disabled: 4*100 + 200 = 600 points per four disables.

Air Warfare Ribbon - In a round, kill six enemies with air vehicles
Vehicles that count are attack helicopters, scout helicopters, and jets
(transport helos are transports and the subject of a separate ribbon).
6*100 + 200 = 800 points per eight air kills.

Stationary Emplacement Ribbon - In a round, kill two people with stationary
emplacements.
Stationary AT guns and AA guns are the only weapons that count. Rare because
these are rarely used. 2*100 + 200 = 400 points per two kills.

Armored Warfare Ribbon - In a round, kill seven enemies with land vehicles
Mobile AA, IFVs, and MBTs count. 7*100 + 200 = 900 points per seven air kills.

Transport Warfare Ribbon - In a round, kill four enemies with transports.
Transport helos and light vehicles count. Rare. 4*100 + 200 = 600 points per
4 kills.

Anti Explosives Ribbon - In a round, destroy two enemy explosives. Extremely
easy to get when blowing up enemy AT Mine traps and C4-laden suicide jeeps
(you will generally get the ribbon two or three times). 2*20 + 200 = 240 points
per two explosives blown up.

Anti Vehicle Ribbon - In a round, destroy three vehicles. Simple, and vehicle
backbone along with Disable Vehicles and Maintanace. 3*50 + 200 = 350 points
per three vehicles destroyed.

Maintenance Efficiency Ribbon - In a round, get seven repairs. Seven is about
the number needed to fully repair a tank, so every time you do intensive repair
on an occupied vehicle you will get a significant bonus. 7*10 + 200 = 270
points per seven repairs.

Medals
......
Medals are the highest-order reward and are obtained by collecting a certain
number of ribbons. Not all ribbons correlate to medals, and they give a large,
flat 10000 XP bonus when achieved for rank, NOT for vehicles. Service rewards
are obtained through time constraints that are generally met around the
vehicle's second service star.

Service Rewards

Engineer Service Medal - Spend 50 hours as an Engineer.
Laser Designator Medal - Get 300 damage assists with the laser designator.
Tank Service Medal - Spend 20 hours in tanks.
Stationary Weapons Service Medal - Spend 2 hours on stationary weapons.
Helicopter Service Medal - Spend 20 hours in helicopters.
Jet Service Medal - Spend 20 hours in jets.

Ribbon Rewards

Maintanace Medal - Obtain the Maintanace Efficiency Ribbon 50 times.
Laser Designator Medal - Get 300 damage assists with the laser designator.
Transport Warfare Medal - Get the Transport warfare ribbon 30 times.
Air Warfare Medal - Get the Air Warfare Ribbon 30 times.
Stationary Emplacement Medal - Get the Stationary Emplacement medal 30 times.
Anti-vehicle medal - Obtain the anti-vehicle medal 50 times.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
[7.03] Service stars and dogtags

Every heavy-duty vehicle in the game has a series of unlocks in
specialization. Upon achieving the last of these unlocks, you are rewarded with
a service star worth a flat 10,000 XP bonus. You can re-earn service stars once
you pass this landmark again, a value that depends based on the vehicle:

32,000 points - Anti-air guns
35,000 points - Jets
48,000 points - Scout helicopters
60,000 points - Attack helicopters
90,000 points - Infantry fighting vehicles
100,000 points - Tanks

Many dog tags are awarded under special conditions. The most interesting dog
tags are those awarded upon recieving your first medal or service star with a
weapon, class, or vehicle; these are displayed on the right side of your two
tags. They can also be retrieved by a stealthy assassination kill on an enemy
with your knife.

A left hand tag is achieved upon getting any ribbon ten times, see Ribbons
above for the list.

Upon getting your first vehicle service star you receive a left-hand dog tag
with a shadowed model of the vehicle in the background, and a flashier dynamic
right-hand dog tag that tallies up the number of kills you have gotten with
that vehicle. Those achieved upon getting your first ribbon are similar.

Mr. Fix It - Obtain Maintanace Medal one time, counts Repairs.
Death Wheeler - Obtain Transport Warfare Medal one time, counts Transport kills
Death's How I Roll - Obtain Armored Warfare Medal one time, counts those kills.
Air 2 Grave - Obtain Air Warfare medal one time, counts air kills.
Stationary Dog Tag - (Almost?) nonexistent, Stationary Warfare Medal, counts
                     Stationary kills
Start Walking - Anti-vehicle medal, counts vehicles destroyed.
Engineer Service Dog Tag - Engineer Service medal, counts gun/rpg kills.
<Vehicle> Service Dog Tag - Any vehicle service star, counts kill with it.
<Vehicle> Service Star 5 Dog Tag - 5 service stars unlocks a flashier one.
<Vehicle> Service Star 10 Dog Tag - 10 unlocks an even flashier one!

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
[V] Thank yous
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------

- Another wonderful game from those guys at DICE.
- Mastadi for his wonderful proofread.
- <your name here> for your contributions (sent to the address below)

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
[VI] Contact
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------

My email is a[underscore]bilogur[at]yahoo[dot]com.

Do:
+ Send me helpful information.
+ Send me corrections.
+ Send me addition information
+ Send me any other question you may have.

Don't:
- Spam me.
- Ask a question already covered here.
- Ask to be my friend.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
[VII] Copyright
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------

This guide is (C) 2012 jimmythesnowman.  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.