ARMA III Trail Considers Details, Sometimes Shoots Them

'You know, we could go shoot at people right now.' 'Yes, but let's wait until later.'
Most shooter trailers have a way of getting to the point. The point, in case you hadn’t guessed, is shooting. People, vehicles, other guns – nothing is safe, and everything is eyebrow-raisingly capable of exploding. Including your eyebrows. ARMA III, though, takes its time. Sometimes, it doesn’t get to that point at all. Mid-way through, it even puts a guy in the line of fire and then shoots elsewhere. In the process, though, you get quick looks at, well, basically everything. Helicopters, air strikes, luxurious car interiors – you name it – all bathed in “the light of a romantic sunset.” Never change, ARMA III narrator man.

So now I’m excited about crouching options. That’s a thing. It all looks excellent, though, honestly. Sure, it’s no gigantic leap up from ARMA II in the grand scheme of things, but I can scarcely think of how Bohemia would even accomplish that. I mean, it’s got the mud-crusted basics of true-to-life-but-still-fun accuracy pretty well figured out, and Medal of Honor already has the market cornered on hyper realistic warbeards. So really, what’s left?


  1. rapier17 says:

    ArmA loving this!

  2. HexagonalBolts says:


    • Runs With Foxes says:

      I was gonna make a snide ‘in b4 day z’ comment but I am already too late.

      • Hematite says:

        Quite, the narrator in the trailer name-dropped it! It seems like they realise they’ve struck gold, and I hope DayZ will get plenty of official backing.

    • Zarunil says:

      I’m more excited about the prospect of DayZ on ArmA 3 than I am of the main game. Considering the popularity of the mod, they’d be silly not to cash in. I’m sure they are scrambling to get it done.

      • beekay says:

        I have to admit, I feel sort of bad for the people who liked the actual ArmA 2 rather than DayZ. From the standard-issue awful youtube comments* it sounds like the game has been overwhelmed by lone-wolf morons, which is going to be particularly toxic to a game focusing on pragmatism and teamwork.

        *yeah of course they’re not trustworthy, but in this case it’d be pretty shocking for this not to be true.

        • Redkid says:

          Most of the actual ArmA 2 gameplay happens on closed servers with communities of likeminded people. These “lone wolfs” as you describe them usually sticks to public servers, and promptly get kicked out of closed communities. (If they ever manage to get in.)

          • dsi1 says:

            Even the DayZ servers get dwarfed once a week or so when the Tacshack guys play.

        • Sassenach says:

          How many times did they have to do that helicopter sequence before they got the final version which didn’t include clipping the ground and burning in a crumpled heap?

          The thing is I doubt the fans of Arma proper are very much affected by DayZ. I can’t imagine there is a super high ratio of new DayZ players to Arma proper converts.

        • MajorManiac says:

          I’m an Arma 2 fan. The Arma community (especially the RPS one) is brilliant, friendly and mature.

          DayZ has just made things even better, as it offers even more gameplay options. I think I can safely speak for all Arma 2 fans and say DayZ has only made things even better. These are good times.

          • BargainOnly_HalfMySoul says:

            I joined the bandwagon because of DAYZ

          • Sardaukar says:

            Echoing this sentiment. Besides bringing in lots of new blood, I think it’s providing a better learning environment for some of us as well.

            I had ArmA 2 long before DayZ, but I never felt really confident in my knowledge of the game to play online with other people. With DayZ, I’ve been able to learn gun mechanics, movement, inventory, proper scouting and survival, without feeling like a burden to my allies or competing against a very proficient enemy team. I now know a great of the Chernarus landscape like the back of my hand, can maneuver and shoot adeptly, and no longer feel like I need to get the best toys in an online match to be on the level with the rest of the players; my favorite tools in DayZ are the Lee Enfield and Crossbow.

        • Lemming says:

          they really should produce it as its own game. By all means use the same engine, but it’d make more sense to keep the communities separate.

          • 12kill4 says:

            they would probably still be using the same map content so why bother? Why would you need to keep them separate? I mean, you could release it as a stand-alone expansion, but the communities aren’t exactly incompatible…

  3. Player1 says:

    At last they seem to have gotten to somewhat believable helicopter physics. Those in the previous games were a joke. My Core i20 coupled with my shiny new GeForce GTXXX890 should be able to run this at mid to high settings. Maybe I should upgrade the ram to something over 10TB.

  4. Sidion says:

    I love these graphics. So gorgeous. If things play like they look BF3 might not be the prettiest FPS on the market soon!

  5. CaspianRoach says:

    If he had both hands on the wheel then how did he start up the engine?

  6. tomeoftom says:

    Bohemia really need to go the whole hog and licence out physics tech – Euphoria for animation and some kind of soft-body or procedural-destruction thing for the environment, vehicles, and buildings. It’s all too static at the moment. Just make one crazy killer engine, and keep making it leaner/more powerful. Let the community build all the content and sort out the multiplayer.

    • El_Emmental says:

      Well, keep in mind the engine have to run everything with a draw distance of at least 1500-2000 meters, this is not the usual 1000 meters you get in other FPS.

      For example, Caspian Border on BF3 is often estimated at 1.4km large (1km high). If you want to have a stable framerate at 3000-4000 meters of draw distance, you can’t add the latest physics features that easily.

      Also, the ArmA series is about authenticity-realism: advanced animations and soft body physics are not top priorities. Correctly recreating each real-life vehicles/weapons in the game is more important than making good-looking car crashes like you saw on the Cry Engine 3 video.

      • Contrafibularity says:

        He still has a point though, although I’m not bothered by these things. 1500-2000 meters is a bit on the lower-end of the spectrum. It might be enough for infantry-only play but if you’re planning to hop in a heli or whatever then you’ll want 3000 meters MINIMUM, or else you won’t even be able to spot who has just shot you down, let alone avoid said fate.

        edit: Also btw Euphoria/Natural Motion is not a demanding animation system (far from it!). People tend to think because it looks so good it must be really demanding but it’s ‘simply’ the result of using virtual evolution in simulations by having animation algorithms refine themselves again and again and again and again. Well perhaps I wouldn’t call it natural selection, but let’s call it emulated natural selection by means of artificial simulation. Or something.

        – Incidentally, Natural Motion made an appearance in an excellent BBC docu. I think it was Jim Al-Khalili’s The Secret Life of Chaos, but it might’ve been another one. Fascinating stuff.

  7. Ernesto says:

    This looks soo great! I really liked the muzzle flash in the night. It’s huge compared to when you see it during the day.
    I hope they publish the whole presentation after E3.

  8. The_Great_Skratsby says:

    Ooph. Yes, yes please.

  9. LionsPhil says:

    I like how the vehicle “showcase” for the land vehicle is driving about a hundred yards and turning off the road, and the submersible one is just drifting forward a little bit. It’s like they’re afraid that if they move too much the physics system will glitch out and launch them into the sky or something.

    • EPICTHEFAIL says:

      This being ArmA, it just might.

    • Stranglove says:

      Alternatively, it’s a preview of their showcase, so they’re just showing what they’ll be showcasing?

    • sparks50 says:

      For E3, its a good idea to make short and compact demos to make the best use of the time.

  10. Chaz says:

    The character movement still looks horrbily leaden and stiff. It’s too stilted and awkward still, there’s no sense of fluidity to any of it, the player still moves around like a sack of spuds on bad legs. For all their realistic bullet drop and penetration etc, their character physics still suck badly.

  11. Sentient Waffle says:

    Yeah, I’m never buying another Bohemia game after the bug riddles nearly unplayable mess ARMA II STILL is.

    • Unaco says:

      Still? You did patch it right? That’s probably why it’s unplayable for you… Bohemia released loads of patches, you should apply them to your game.

      Seriously though… For the majority, ArmA2/OA these days runs with very few issues. We’ve started to get some pretty high numbers for our 2 weekly sessions (Tuesdays and Sundays), 40 last week, and 50 on Tuesday just past! All of them playing, for ~4 hours without issue (ok, that 1 chopper at the beginning of that 1st mission blew up mysteriously, but at least it looked neat). Personally, I have 508 hours in ArmA2/OA (going from the Steam timer) and could probably count the number of CTDs I’ve had on my hands.

      There is the community Beta as well, and the A3 engine isn’t as far from the A2 engine as the A2 engine was from the Armed Assault engine, so they’ve been using A2 and ToH as a testbed for some of the changes. So hopefully ArmA3 will be coming out in a much more refined and polished state. It’s not going to be perfect and completely bug free… no game can be… and in a game with the sheer scale and scope of ArmA there will always be bugs/glitches. We can just hope that they are mitigated/lessened.

    • El_Emmental says:

      I think he meant ArmA I (which was really bugged and unoptimized on launch), everyone knows ArmA II is doing fine after all the patches.

    • paterah says:

      Lol, what? The game has been patched to death and it’s a almost flawless experience now.

      • Sard says:

        I understand that nobody count campaign as part of a game, but it still bugged and AI is awful.

  12. buzzmong says:

    I really like the changes to movement shown, especially the ability to pop up. It’s going to make a massive difference on how cover is used in the gameworld.

    I know that despite my better instincts and the probable feeling it’s going to be a buggy mess, I will be buying this on Day 1.

  13. heledir says:

    It really looks great from a technical point of view, but why did they choose a brown environment? Seriously, games in a military context need to move out of the brown areas of our world. It may sound like nagging, but I personally just cannot see brown environments anymore.

    • Stranglove says:

      Well, most warzones are brown, and these environments look much better than tree-heavy chernarus.

      • heledir says:

        Still though, some more colour would have been nice. Sure this island is in a region where landscapes are brown, but still, it’s the Armaverse and not reality.

  14. Skyhigh says:

    I hope it does not cost an ARMAnd leg to get this.

  15. Axess Denyd says:

    I think they need to start over on the weapon light. It is much too wide-angle and very dim.

    They should order a good Surefire and work from there.

    • MordeaniisChaos says:

      I’m not so sure about that. I wouldn’t want a fucking beacon showing off my position. All a light needs to do is give enough light to show you what’s in front of you, not light up a guy on the next bluff, you know?

  16. felisc says:

    i do enjoy that narrator too. I still remember him talking about underwear in last year’s presentation. Actually whenever I hear him talk I have a clear picture of underwears in mind. troubling.

  17. Ginga121 says:

    DayZ is created by an ArmA 3 dev so chances are it will be there. He even said it shouldn’t take him too long to shift the code over.

    p.s the best bit of the article is the “Never change, ARMA III narrator man” bit :D

  18. rockman29 says:

    Ze graphics, there is too much!!!11!

  19. wodin says:

    Whats the betting someone makes a undersea exploration mod.

  20. MajorManiac says:

    Its beautiful to see ArmA running so smoothly. I only hope the third one looks this good on our machines.

    This video showing ArmA 3’s new lighting is well worth a look to – link to

  21. MordeaniisChaos says:

    What? NOT a huge step up? Have you SEEN the textures and shit in ArmA 2? Not to mention the piss poor vehicle handling, the piss poor vehicle interiors (Military vehicles tend to have a lot of very important information displayed inside of the vehicle, weirdly enough). I enjoy me some ArmA 2 bit it looks fucking AWFUL and handles pretty piss poorly in a lot of situations.

  22. Bobtree says:

    Playing DayZ, the HDR lighting in ArmA2 is the worst thing I have ever seen in a game.

  23. Joshua Northey says:

    That did not seem like safe Helicopter handling. The altitude was much to low.

    • Havok9120 says:

      Most military helicopters (and especially Little Birds, the chopper shown) are built to fly at the nape of the earth. They’re too fragile to do anything else in a combat environment.

  24. Shooop says:

    Did they nab the sound design team of MoH 2010? The one good thing about that game was how menacing and loud the guns where. And that’s exactly how these sound.

    I’m ready to be a believer. If I don’t need to memorize every key on my keyboard to move fluently and don’t have to command/operate vehicles I’m ready to throw money at Bohemia.

  25. Kevin says:

    And what BiS failed to tell us and the press is that in order to run this build smoothly, they had to steal one of NORAD’s supercomputers.

  26. Shortwave says:

    I really wish they’d talk about more general engine updates and optimization rather than talking about the graphics constantly, spare the few gameplay/control updates they’ve spoken about of course.

    Still have never heard them address if this engine is optimized better at all or what we can expect for performance. All these graphics mean nothing to me if it’s going to run like a rusty turd.

    I mean, sure. They showed some explosions and new vehicles. Very good. But yea.

  27. pendergraft says:

    I wonder if BIS will ever consider what Egosoft is currently doing with the X series — that is, redoing the whole thing from scratch rather than continue building iteratively atop the same engine. Though the direction Egosoft is taking may be a little extreme, considering (last I read) you’re limited to only one ship this time around. I don’t know. Maybe the function-sensitive scroll wheel is the only way to incorporate such a boggling amount of options, and finding another way to handle it would likely only result in a drastic decrease in features. Which would suck. But still. That inventory system is a headache, and it doesn’t look like they’ve updated it at all. I mostly avoided it in the base game, but now that Day Z requires constant management, I was forced to learn its intricacies. And half the time I still don’t know what I’m doing.

  28. Hypocee says:

    That is really well-written, knowing of the publicity machine yet snappy and respectful of the viewer. Great job, Bohemia PR folks.

    I am such a pushover, because I get so excited when light beats sound from a distant explosion in these. What a tiny thing to get right, and what a huge difference it makes to me.

  29. PearlChoco says:

    “… and Medal of Honor already has the market cornered on hyper realistic warbeards”

    Very nice.

  30. Jim9137 says:

    I can dig this. Graphics, good. Stuff, yay. Something underwater soiled my pants whoo.

    But did they fix the walking yet

  31. LostViking says:

    Man, it’s starting to look pretty fracking realistic. 5 years from now and I am sure it will be hard to separate the game from real life. We definitely haven’t seen the last ‘game footage being used in the news, mistaken for real footage’ episode ;)