Suggestions for Weapon Handling

Speed Reload Versus Regular Reload
It bothers me how little difference there is between speed and regular reloads. In that the difference of time is almost if not always under a second. Realistically, one must put a magazine back in their rig, which takes a lot longer than the second-ish in between the removal and introduction of magazines in the game. The concept of the speed reload is to skip that delay by not saving the old magazine. With the game's lack of time for storing magazines, the time difference between speed and normal is a fraction of what I believe it should be. That's not to say that I believe that the difference is irrelevant; it has occasionally made the difference between success and failure, but that happens much less than one would think. It is my opinion that there should be a considerably longer period in between the phases for a regular load, thus making the speed reload more important. This should be especially true for machine guns, as you have to fiddle around with your backpack, with which most people would have difficulty without removing the backpack. As a balance to making speed reloads much more desirable in terms of time, it would require a greater penalty than just losing the last rounds in the mag. I would suggest that at a supply crate one would only be able to refill magazines that they have not thrown away, which would force players to think about their actions' effects in the long-run as opposed to the short.

Magazine Management
How magazine management works now is, quite frankly, boring. You reload and you get whichever mag of yours is the largest. It would add to the immersion if players had to actively manage their ammo, such as manually choosing which of their magazines they will load into the weapon. It would also be nice if backpacks had an actual use. I'd suggest that one would be able to store scavenged magazines in the backpack, but be unable to use them until they are placed in a chest rig's mag pouch. The same sort of thing should be available for explosives.

Weapon Switching
There should be a system that allows a player to switch to their secondary faster in the event of primary weapons running out of ammo. My suggestions would be one of two things. One, dropping your primary. Obviously, it would be faster to drop your weapon and draw your sidearm than to store your primary via weapon strap or whatever. Two, not actually storing the weapon. In this case, a player could lower the primary and draw the sidearm with one hand. This speeds up the transition, but the one-handed hold leads to worse recoil control, worse sway, and inability to reload. I am aware that NWI stated that they were looking into other underbarrel attachments and corresponding buffs, one of which would speed up weapon draw/store, but that's disappointingly simple for a game like Sandstorm.

Completely unrelated, but smoke grenades
This game has disappointed me as far as smoke grenades go. For one, smoke grenades (at least the M18; I don't have experience with other types) have a very satisfying "pop" when they start dispensing smoke. Smoke propagation in Sandstorm is also incorrect. The M18, after "detonating", starts spewing smoke out of its bottom. That smoke does not stay there; it's direction is determined entirely by wind. The stagnant cloud in Sandstorm is far different from reality. I understand in its entirety the reasoning for this in terms of game balance in a game such as Sandstorm, but like I said: it's disappointing.

@AggressiveRock said in Suggestions for Weapon Handling:

Speed Reload Versus Regular Reload

Yah ... I kinda agree. But I think this is a gameplay decision. I think if you added a few more seconds onto the administrative reload, people would loose their minds. This is where realism gets a little subjective. The current reload speeds are realistic for storing the partial mag in a dump pouch, but then loading a partial mag back into the gun should take longer. In real life the speed at which I do a reload like this will depend a lot on the circumstances I'm in. If I'm in good cover and not being shot at, I'll take my time reloading and police my gear a bit at the same time. If I've got solid enough cover to not want to do a speed reload, but in active contact, that reload will be a lot quicker, even if the motions are mostly the same. This is the sort of thing that just can't be feasibly modeled in a computer game.

Machine guns in the game currently do not have a speed reload option. There is only a single pace to reload those weapons. I'm not sure why messing with a backpack would be necessary, it's entirely possible to carry machine gun ammo in chest pouches.

Magazine Management

This isn't ARMA, and I'm glad Sandstorm doesn't bother with modeling things to that amount of detail. I don't think it's necessary in this sort of game. Most people have no interest in micromanaging their inventory to that level.

Weapon Switching

This came up in another thread too: there is no shortcut to doing a weapons transition faster. In a standard rifle to pistol transition the firing hand immediately goes from the rifle to the pistol to begin the draw, while the support hands guides the rifle muzzle down to hang on the sling and than moves to support the pistol.

Doing an uncontrolled drop of a rifle with a sling would only free the support hand sooner, which won't increase the speed of the pistol draw at all, and the rifle would be more likely to end up hanging somewhere it would be in the way. Keeping the support hand on the rifle and drawing the pistol single-handed, for the same reason, would not speed up the pistol draw at all as it won't free up the hand doing the actual draw any more quickly. This is only a sensible technique if the rifle does not have a sling.

last edited by MAA_Bunny

@AggressiveRock said in Suggestions for Weapon Handling:

This should be especially true for machine guns, as you have to fiddle around with your backpack

This would also allow for proper balancing of LMGs. Artificial over-the-top recoil is annoying at best, infuriating at worst.
I too believe that the difference between a quick reload and a regular reload is way too low. It's really sad to see that NWI has tons of totally valid options to balance the game, yet to see them chose the most lazy and artificial "solutions", like making LMGs kick more than a 50cal even though all of them are only chambered with 5.56 and 7.62...

I would suggest that at a supply crate one would only be able to refill magazines that they have not thrown away, which would force players to think about their actions' effects in the long-run as opposed to the short.

Plus, it would give a really good reason for scavenging mags on the ground.

last edited by Grumf

Hey all,

Thanks for sharing this feedback here. I'll pass this on to the team.