Discussion: Battlefield 2 - Official Rules, Announcements & SOPs / Battlefield 2 - Standard Operating Procedures - SOP (Tactics) - Fire and Movement - SOP (Tactics) - Fire and Movement
Why use Fire & Movement Techniques?
In a separate
Why use Fire & Movement Techniques?
In a separate topic titled SOP (Tactics) - Observation and Scanning Terrain, we pointed out that unnecessary movement KILLS, meaning that when the enemy is in motion (running or walking), then he's most vulnerable to being seen by you and easily neutralized. This stems from two facts that give you an edge in being able to get your shot off before he does. First, when he's in motion it's much harder for him to see you as he moves across the ground and second, even if he does spot you when he's in motion, his weapon reticule is not stabilized (usually it's wide open if he's running). The result is that even if he did fire at you in this running or walking state, it's most likely he'll miss you by a wide margin. If you are stationary with a tight weapon reticule (best firing position), then even the average player will neutralize an opponent without much difficulty.
So, now you know that enemy movement helps you see and kill them effectively, but how can you move yourself around a map in a manner that minimizes the same thing happening to you, particularly if you assume the enemy is using proper Observation and Scanning Terrain Techniques?
Whether in real life, or within our BF2 game, good fire and movement techniques are founded upon several basic principles.
Five Step Sequence of Fire and Movement
Scan ground to your front
Choose your next fire postion
Select best route to get there
Move to chosen fire position via route selected
Adopt defensive posture and secure fire position
Goto to Step #1 and start process of scanning ground over again.
Things to think about during the Five Step Sequence of Fire and Movment?
1. Plan Ahead
Instead of simply charging forward blindly, pause for a moment, adopt the prone unsupported (laying on your belly) or kneeling position, then scan the ground to your front. You want to pick your next "fire position" and possibly the one after that, before moving from where you are. While halted evaluating your next few fire position possibilities and how you're going to get there, you also perform your own terrain scan looking for possible enemy activity across your frontage.
2. Use Terrain Effectively
The various maps used in BF2 all have varying degrees of map contours with undulating terrain. Before you move and to some extent while actually in motion, pay particular attention to and make a mental note of any "dead ground" in front of you. Dead ground are areas where the terrain is depressed (i.e. gulleys, ravines and wide ditches etc). These map low points help obscure your Silhouette and Shape as you traverse through them. They effectively block the enemy from observing your advance, by positioning you out of sight down in a ground depression when viewed from their own observation point.
Another use of terrain which works only in the BF2 game but not real life, could be termed "map edge crawling". All of the maps we use have limits bordered by an edge that we can't physically move past. Since it's darn hard to move and scan a 180 degree (or sometimes more) frontage at the same, then a good technique to limit your scanning needs, is to move along tightly butted up against map edges. Once you spawn, move immediately to a left or right map edge extremity and start moving forward, concentrating your scan to a 45-60 degree view to your left or right front (depending upon which map edge you're using). This limits the area you need to focus upon and also speeds up your general movement forward, as each pause you make to scan ground can be shorter.
3. Use Trees and Bushes Effectively
The graphics terrains within BF2, are made up of various kinds of trees and bushes. Some are useful, while others have no value in concealing your movement or for settling into a good fire position. There are some that can be quite effective and often the enemy will walk right by you, let alone be able to see you at any distance. With trees, look for coniferous (pine trees etc) that have the low hanging branches. The shading effect that they afford, plus the very low reach of their limbs near the ground make for an ideal fire position during your movement and scanning phase. With bushes, there are certain ones that let you get into a prone unsupported (laying on your belly) position and saddle right into them. Once inside, move slightly forward just enough so you can see through their leaves and branches, leaving a few dangling in your forward vision. Remember, you may be concealed in the bush, but there's a good chance your rifle barrel is actually sticking out front of it (some sniper rifles have particularly long barrels), so be cognizant of this protrusion. You'll also find throughout some maps, bushes that are slightly taller. These permit you to nestle into them and remain in the kneeling position. This is preferable to the prone unsupported (laying on your belly) position for two reasons. First, your eyes are higher up and you can see further with less ground obstructions and second, when kneeling you can rotate easily (and quickly) a full 360 degrees, which you can't do well when laying on your belly. This can be really important if you spot something with your lateral vision and have to turn and fire quickly.
4. Use Manmade Obstacles Effectively
The graphics terrains within BF2, are made up of various kinds of manmade structures and obstacles. In preparing for a move from one fire position to another, constantly be looking for "movement routes" that place these kinds of barriers between you and any enemy scanning his own frontage. Some of these obstacles are high enough that you can move quickly (running) while standing up and still block your Silhouette and Shape from being seen, but others are lower such as castle rampart walls, rock walls and hedgerows, fences etc. Therefore, remember to lower yourself to a crouching (kneeling) kind of stance as you continue your movement, or you'll find some sniper drawing a bead on you for a great head shot that you won't even know where it came from. You'll then wonder how he was able to see you without realizing the top part of your body became exposed above the obstacle as you moved.
5. Use Shadows Effectively
The graphics lighting engine in BF2 throws shadows near objects, creating a darkened area that makes for a place to halt and take up a good fire position. As you're moving, constantly be scanning the actual ground textures to your front and you'll see these darkened shadow areas, particularly against rock wall faces. These shadowed areas are also terrific as permanent sniper "hides", especially if you can find one with an appropriately sized bush to nestle into. Remember to get down in the prone unsupported (laying on your belly) position in these shadows, as the kneeling or standing position often creates a surface texture of yourself against the darker background.
In summary, the true better scoring players in BF2 are most often the people with the lowest lag who get their shot off first. They tend to move with stealth and use ground to their advantage, see the enemy first and react with their mouse quicker. They seem to have eyes in the back of their heads and always appear to be one brief mouse click firing ahead of you, just after you've spotted them a little too late. Practice some of these fire and movement techniques off-line to get used to the Five Step Sequence of Fire and Movement and the fundamentals of how to apply them effectively.
All other system and playing factors being equal, I think you'll be surprised at how much better you do then before you developed better fire and movement skills.