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ATTEN-HUT! Gentlemen, welcome to the Armed Forces Handbook. A collection of examples of good soldiery brought to you by the veterans of the gaming world. In this handy handbook you will find a selection of best practices and technical analysis of tactics and special manouevres perfected by the very best soldiers the (virtual) battlefield has produced. It is recommended that you study the following chapters before entering into any combat situation.

You will information ranging from World War One through to the present day encompassing many theaters of war, including World at War, Modern Conflict and futuristic scenarios such as the Halo project and many others.

Part 1: Rules of engagement

All soldiers must abide by the rules of engagement as set down by the relevant authority. It is worth noting however that in most theaters of operations active today, from the Halo theater, through to the Rainbow 6 and COD theaters the only rules of engagement are as follows:

1. Identify enemy and then shoot to kill

2. Identify something that could be an enemy and shoot to kill

3. Vigorously pursue all enemy and destroy with extreme prejudice.

Part 2: Know your weapons

i) Classical weaponry

In the classic theatre of war the soldier must be familiar with several different weapon systems. These can be roughly categorised as follows:

a) Pistols – Basic sidearm carried by most soldiers. Weapon is pin point accurate at most ranges, excellent for head shots on stationary targets. Will only cause minimal damage however and may require more than one head shot to eliminate targets. Ignore enemy helmets, they rarely work and appear to be mostly used as decoration. Most snipers prefer carrying a pistol whilst moving between positions. It is worth noting that all pistols can be fired as quickly as you can pull the trigger, rates of up to 1000rpm are reported to have been seen.

b) Rifles – The M1 Garand is the most prolific weapon in WWI theaters. They are everywhere. Limited rate of fire and poor medium damage causes this to be a 2nd choice weapon amongst soldiers. They are however fairly accurate in most circumstances at medium ranges. You will find that by looking down the iron sights of this weapon your eyesight will improve slightly. This will enable you to see a bit further.

c) SMGs (Submachine Guns) – The Thompson submachine gun is the most well known within this category and is familiar to every soldier to ever pull on khaki pants. High rates of fire but poor accuracy mean that this weapon is best employed at short range. If fired one shot at a time this weapon can be used at longer ranges as required.

d) Sniper Rifles – Featuring slow rates of fire the sniper rifles appear to be difficult to reload also. Some have remarked that they are unsure why they struggle to reload a sniper rifle “it’s not like it’s a shotgun or anything” but the slow reload rate and bolt action make sniper rifles a poor choice for close range combat. Despite firing large calibre rounds that rip large holes through human tissue most sniper rifles only kill in one bullet when successfully aimed at the head. It is not uncommon to witness a soldier take a sniper round to the leg and not be hindered in anyway by the wound whilst walking/running.

e) Browning emplaced machine gun – Soldiers will find these weapons placed at random points on a battlefield. Despite every other (portable) Heavy Machine gun never overheating, these weapons are prone to stopping working after several seconds of sustained fire. All emplaced weapons are however very accurate, often at long ranges, at can fire many rounds due to their unlimited bullet capacity. It is unusual for a weapon not to require reloading, but there has so far been no reported accounts of emplaced machine guns requiring a reload.

f) Heavy Machine guns – Inferior to their emplaced brethren in that they require reloading periodically (but possessing larger ammunition magazines) these weapons are very inaccurate at all ranges. Despite firing a large calibre bullet these weapons bizarrely do not inflict much damage.

g) Grenades – A standard fragmentation grenade or German Stick “Grenade” should be thrown in the general vicinity of oncoming enemy fighters. Despite their small size they are often difficult to fit in pockets due to their unusual shape. This explains why soldiers often carry very few, only one or two. Grenades are ineffective against tanks and appear to seek out and rebound off almost every object/wall/table/street lamp/tree that is in the general vicinity of the thrower. For this reason beware when throwing. Avoid holding the grenade for two long as self immolation might occur. This will prove deadly IN ALL CIRCUMSTANCES. Grenades will penetrate windows with ease as all windows on the battlefield are pathetically flimsy. Please note, it is an unwritten law to hold onto the grenade for three seconds before throwing.

h) Melee weapons – Mainly a knife, but sometimes a wrench or other implement, this weapon should be employed at close range however you will sometimes be surprised by a reach of up to one metre at times. This weapon will only kill one enemy per swipe but will be deadly in almost all circumstances, including leg/arm damage. The most lethal weapon on the battlefield in terms of hits/deaths. Often employed during chance encounters at doorways and corners. The knife is the official weapon of choice for elimination of snipers.

ii) Modern weapon systems

a) Pistols – Modern Pistols do not appear to have advanced technologically at all since the WWII environment. One area of improvement is the additions of suppressive “silencers” to the pistol to enable covert operations. Employing a silencer will reduce the damage the weapon causes. For some reason snipers are fond of using silenced pistols.

b) Assault Rifle – Modern Assault rifles, such as the M16, M4, Ak47 and G36 are familiar to most modern soldiers. Most have the following characteristics:Medium-High Damage, quick rate of fire, small magazine, under-slung grenade launcher. These are the standard choice for infantry on the modern battlefield.

c) Anti-Tank weapons – Primarily designed to eliminate tanks and armoured vehicles, these weapons are appear to be more effective against enemy troops and light vehicles. Even hits against the weak rear and top of tanks does not destroy the vehicle. It is recommended therefore to avoid using anti-tank weapons against tanks. Several shots are often required. The anti-tank weapon is often highly accurate however and with the explosive rounds are ideal for eliminating enemy troops. Fire at the ground around your target’s feet for best results. Despite their bulk anti-tank weapons can usually be fired while on the move.

d) Sniper Rifles – Modern Sniper rifles only differ from their older counterparts by the inclusion of suppressors and sometimes semi-automatic function. However, semi-automatic sniper rifles always inflict less damage than their bolt-action brethren.

e) Melee – The following are recommended protocol for using melee weapons:

1. Rush into an enemy occupied building and start swiping
2. Aim randomly
3. Target Snipers, they are vulnerable to close quarter attacks
4. If you miss your initial swipe circle around the enemy or jump behind them.
5. Never attack corpses, doing this has no significant value and can only lead to death/increased laundry costs. Some less disciplined conscripts have been known to crouch over the face of the fallen enemy, presumably in a form of debase celebration. This behaviour is frowned upon by soldiers over the age of eight years.

f) SMGs – Dealing low damage but boasting high rates of fire and little recoil SMGs are excellent CQB weapons but are a poor choice for longer ranges.

iii) Advanced / prototype weapon systems

a) Battle rifle

Advanced Battle rifles typically boast high rates of fire and medium damage levels. Often with decent capacity magazines and a scope for better aiming.

b) Alien weapons

It should be noted that Aliens never use solid projectile weapons and always seem to develop laser/plasma based weaponry. These weapons will often boast a similar reloading mechanism to most earth based weaponry.

c) Laser weapons

Laser weapons always fire with pin-point accuracy but normally have low rates of fire. Use these for medium to long range and go for the head.

d) Sniper Rifle

Future sniper weapons seem to be identical in operation to their modern day counter-parts, bizarrely they appear to be improvement proof apart from more zoom on the scope.

Part 3: Vehicular identification and utilization

i) Light transports

a) Jeeps, buggies, quads

These vehicles are often discovered in advanced areas of the battlefield at the very early stages of a conflict and often used as a land grabbing utility during flag based operations. If a vehicle starts to vent smoke from the engine beware, the Army Handbook recommends that the occupants disembark immediately to avoid death.

Anti tank weapons are most effective against these vehicles, as are most high calibre machine guns. Veteran soldiers recommend that you pay attention to explosive devices stuck to the vehicle as this indicates imminent suicide. Additionally beware of passengers suddenly appearing next to the vehicle as most vehicles appear to be built with short range teleporters which save the occupants actually climbing out of the vehicle. Most veterans have never actually seen someone CLIMB out of a vehicle.

ii) Armored Fighting Vehicles

a) Troop Carriers, BMP, Bradley.

iii) Helicopters

a) Transport

b) Attack

Fast moving low-flying rotary aircraft can be effectively used at very low altitude. The Army Handbook recommends this instructional video for examples of low flying at speed and long-range observation.

iv) Fixed wing airborne craft

a) Fighter

b) Bomber

Part 4: Know your enemy

i) General Infantry (meat)

ii) Snipers

Snipers can be found in the following places:

  • Behind Trees
  • On rooftops

iii) Short range combatants (Run & Gunners)

The Army Ranger handbook lists “Standing Order 5. Don’t never take a chance you don’t have to” which is a blatant double negative. This should be interpretted as “Take chances that you don’t have to.” The average run and gunner will live (and die) by this creed. Regularly electing to sprint across open streets under heavy fire, just to get into a room full of the enemy and engage with a shot gun the Run and Gun soldier will expose himself to the maximum risk for easy results.

Knowledge of the enemy’s location and intended objective are imperative, often effectively deployed in King of the Hill and Capture the Flag missions.

Part 5: Basic Military tactics

i) Stand and fight (and die)

According to the Army Ranger Handbook, Standing Order 18 states: Don’t stand up when the enemy’s coming against you. Kneel down, lie down, hide behind a tree. Basically make yourself as small a target as possible. Kneeling/lying down will give you the added bonus of a better firing base and therefore increases your firing accuracy.

ii) Reserved application of firepower (camping)

iii) Covert intelligence utilisation (cheating and exploits)

iv) Commonly experienced situations

The Ranger Handbook states in standing order 19 “Let the enemy come till he’s almost close enough to touch, then let him have it and jump out and finish him up with your hatchet. When you have fired all of the rounds in your weapon and the enemy is still alive, resort to your close ranged weapon to finish them efficiently. Do not reload.

v) Firing from the hip

It is a commonly accepted fact that firing a weapon without aiming it results in a reduced weapon accuracy. Always fire from a stable firing platform, preferrably in a crouch or prone position and fire short controlled bursts. For an example of how not to do this, and excellent examples of blind firing, suppression fire and firing from the hip, please refer to this training video.

Part 6: Advanced Tactical Manouevres

i) Pincer

ii) Defensive deployment

The U.S Army Ranger Handbook states “Standing Order 6. When we march we march single file, far enough apart to that one bullet can’t go through two men”. It is highly recommended that soldiers avoid bunching up, retain at least the explosive area of a fragmentation grenade at all times to avoid multiple casualties.

Avoid standing too close to a comrade who is at a doorway, they might need to retreat at short notice back inside, you will block their path and get you both killed.

iii) Thoughtful kit selection

iv) Lateral thinking

An example: Enemy appoaches your position and commences firing; consider returning fire and retreating behind cover, deposit a grenade in at the corner of the cover that you are using while retreating further. Enemy will encounter grenade. Enemy will struggle to overcome sudden dismemberment.

v) Enemy movement prediction / Reconnaissance

The U.S Counter Insurgency Handbook states, section 3-139 “Overt area and zone reconnaissances are excellent means for tactical unit to learn more about their area of operations, especially the terrain, infrastructure, people, government, local leaders, and insurgents” and “allows commanders to fill intelligence gaps.” It is a worthwhile endeavour to progress to the expected point of contact with the enemy via an indirect route. Taking time to find a vantage point will help you uncover ambushes and reveal troop numbers. Dense foilage, hills, rooftops etc provide excellent surveillence points. Even if you don’t stay long, make sure you know what’s ahead by using reconnaissance.

Additionally, ensure that you make mental note of places where you encounter enemy vehicles, you will discover that certain enemy soldiers will have preferred routes through the battlefield. Ensure you set up effective ambushes along these routes. WARNING: Advanced Soldiering technique requried:- Patience.

vi) Enemy Base of Operations Siege warfare (Spawn Raping)

Vii) Camoflage

An explanatory video on camoflage can be found by following this link.

Part 7: In conclusion


Recognize that I volunteered as a Ranger.
(YOU got yourself into this. YOU selected your side, YOU chose your guns, YOU didn’t choose another game. You must bear the dangers you will face on the battlefield without frustration, without anger or cussing)
Acknowledge that a Ranger is an elite soldier.
(You must realise that you have skills beyond the average noob and therefore must not become frustrated by their difficiencies and lack of understanding of the game)
Nerver fail your comrades
(Never leave half-way through a battle, never leave your post/joypad during a fight to go to the toilet/eat, never change sides to improve your win/loss ratio)
Gallantly show the world you are specially selected and well trained.
(Offer help to noobs and suggest tactics to your comrades, take leadership in squads)
Energetically meet the enemy
(Be online every hour of every day, give up your job, decline to eat, your virtual country needs you!)
Readily display the intestinal fortitude required to fight.
(Play on past your self imposed play limits, don’t go to sleep at 1am, don’t stop playing because your partner asked you to)


THe U.S Army Ranger Handbook

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