ArmA 3 Marksmen DLC – News from the Livestream

Summary

  • The Marksmen DLC will be released in April with a specific date still to be announced
  • 7 new weapons (5 rifles and 2 machine guns)
  • Bipods and weapon resting will be free features for all ArmA 3 players
  • New DLC weapons’ use will be restricted to Marksmen DLC owners
  • New weapon scopes
  • The DLC features the new multiplayer game mode “End Game” in which two teams will be pitched against each other trying to gain an intelligence and deliver it to an objective faster than the other team. It will be available for all ArmA 3 players!
  • Two new training missions (“Firing from vehicles” and “Marksmen”) for DLC owners
  • New group management system allows to create and manage groups (fireteams and/or squads) for your friends with a name and logo
  • Shared objectives that allow to assign to them and unassign again. A counter near the symbol shows how many players already are working on said objective and lets you prioritize tasks
  • Sound improvements like better supersonic cracks (sound depending on caliber, distance, angle, etc.) and frequency attenuation of shots which is basically a layer of sound that changes depending on your position and the environment around you
  • AI improvements like correctly reacting to suppressive fire and avoiding them, as well as spreading intel like their enemy positions (your friendlies’ positions) around their squads/groups
  • The “garage” is a new part of the Virtual Arsenal where you can test all vehicles, configure them and shoot dummy vehicles with damage indication. All DLC locks are lifted here, so non-Helicopter-DLC owners can test the new helicopters.

Weapons

Bohemia Interactive just announced new Intel on their upcoming Marksmen DLC which will include new weapons; 5 rifles and 2 machine guns:

NATO:
  • MK-I EMR which is a DMR (Designated Marksman Rifle) and fits between a sniper rifle and an assault rifle, so they are meant to be used at shorter ranges than a typical bold action rifle
  • MAR-10, also a DMR with a built-in bipod
  • SPMG, a MMG (Medium Machine Gun) and fires a bigger caliber that normal Light Machine Guns, probably meant to be shot with a bipod deployed given its higher recoil
FIA:
  • Mk14. a semi-automatic rifle, basically a M14
CSAT:
  • Cyrus, the OPFOR equivalent to the MK-I EMR, also a DMR
  • Akina ASP-1 Kir, the counterpart to NATO’s MAR-10
  • Navid, their MMG

It seems the new weapons are balanced out quite good.
As of now, BI stated that the new DLC weapons will only be usable by Marksmen DLC owners.

There are two new ways of stabilizing your weapon in the upcoming DLC: weapon resting and the use of a bipod. While your weapon will be automatically stabilized when placing your rifle on a low object (like a crate or a low wall) which reduces weapon sway, deploying an equipped bipod on your gun can be done via a key press.
Fun fact: Bipods can be deployed on another soldier’s head.

A deployed bipod will obviously restrict your angle of fire and mobility, but greatly increase your accuracy and decrease the weapon’s recoil. They are meant to be used to lay down suppressive fire effectively on which the AI now is going to react to properly, but I will get to that in a second.

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Sound

Coming with the new weapon features, new audio improvements will be added to the game. They are using a new system for the frequency attenuation of shots, which correctly renders the travel of sound based on environmental characteristics. This acoustic attenuation (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Acoustic_attenuation) defines the loss of sound propagation on its way to the listener. This means that shots further away are heard muffled and quieter compared to a firefight right next to you.

Another addition are weapon tails, which are basically another layer of sound on top of the default shot sound that includes sound distortion and echo, again, based on your position in the environment. This layer is being saved when the terrain is created, so the sound engine is telling the game “this is a forest” and given that, it calculates the audio, but also incorporates the places around like if you are in said forest but at the edge of a desert, it will sound different. This new sound rendering works to provide an organic and smooth feedback of your surroundings.

 

AI

Fitting the new technique of proper suppression, the game’s artificial intelligence for units has been improved in that regard. Enemy units will now react to suppressive fire and seek cover better than before when fired upon. They will avoid suppressed areas which allows you to provide a moment for your squad mates to cross an open area.

Information handling as also been worked on and AI units will communicate intel about the enemy’s position between groups. This takes a while and might look like this:

BLUFOR opens fire at an enemy squad in a village. They cannot spot the attacker and get behind cover. The squad leader calls HQ to announce they are being shot at and another squad on patrol gets sent as backup. They flank the attacking BLUFORs and win the firefight. It might look like this. How well this is developed is not certain at this time, but you might want to check out the ArmA 3 DevBranch, (http://dev.arma3.com/dev-branch), which has gone online while the stream was running and includes the new features to test. But beware, many parts are still in their early stages, do not represent the final product and are filled with bugs.

 

Missions and game modes

To make you comfortable as a new DLC owner, the new “Firing from vehicles”, also available in multiplayer, and “Marksmen” showcases provide an overview about new additions to the game, while latter was actually introduced in the Helicopter DLC as a platform update.

Additionally, for all players, the new “End Game” multiplayer game mode will set two sides pitched against each other in a race to gather intel and deliver it to a capture point, as well as prevent the enemy from doing so. It is also available in the current DevBranch!

In that new game mode, you will find the new group management system, which allows players to create a group with its own name and logo for friends to join and play together. This means they are no longer depending on the mission creator and his choice for squad management, but rather can decide themselves. An invited player will then receive a message to join the group.

 

Virtual Garage

As part of the Virtual Arsenal, introduced in the free Bootcamp update, the garage will allow players to try out vehicles in a safe environment. All DLC locks are lifted here, so if you haven’t already purchased the Helicopter DLC, you can test the helicopters here.

It also includes the option to customize your vehicles like adding and removing benches, doors, FLIR optics, etc. Developers can export this, as well as skin and passenger configurations for their own missions.

They added vehicle dummies for you to shoot at, which will accurately indicate taken damage via a color coding system, also showing internal components like the fuel tank. Thanks to ArmA’s physics engine, these components can take individual damage. Now, you can see how much you deal based on your distance, angle, caliber and obviously the target’s armor.

 

In closing

In today’s livestream it has become clear that Bohemia Interactive did a lot of work implementing new features to the game, many of which will be available as a platform update for everyone to be excited about. DLC customers will gain access to the seven new weapons and the showcase missions. It will be available for purchase sometime in April with a specific date yet to be announced.

PS: If you want to save money buying all DLCs, check out their DLC Bundle, which includes the Marksmen DLC for download when it’s released.

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