Page MenuHomeFeedback Tracker

Vehicles should not explode by gunfire
Assigned, NormalPublic


Not sure if the title is perfect, but heres my 2cents.

I have found that vehicles explode when shot at with non explosive rounds. Sure it takes a few rounds, but the end result is that the car gets destroyed and blows up, which first of all, is rather unrealistic as it is highly unlikely, even though possible, but i guess a safe estimate is the likelyhood being 1%?

Why it is a problem. Because when getting out a vehicle when under attack, or vehicle is disabled, you may not have any decent cover nearby, so generally ducking behind the vehicle makes for good cover, and the problem is if the enemy shoots the car to zero health, it blows up and you die.


Legacy ID
Steps To Reproduce

start up a mission in editor with player as a gunner with MX SW or any heavy assault weapon of choice, and any car vehicle of choice.

Shoot at the car repeatedly.

Watch it blow up.

Additional Information

Now bear in mind, I do not mind if a car blows up due to explosives such as an RPG, even though then it may not realistically blow up at first shot, in other words no secondary explosion imediately, however there is a greater liklihood of that happening with an RPG as opposed to your general arsenal of weapons, so again i wouldn't mind as that will make a bit more sense, but primary weapons should not be capable of this.

Google if you must on the subject, ask around, hell even mythbusters busted this myth.

Thanks to wallside for this =)

I think an implementation like
if(health == 0)

if(lastdamage caused by a missile/satchel)

would already be satisfying or at least an improvement.

Event Timeline

ShotgunSheamuS edited Additional Information. (Show Details)
ShotgunSheamuS set Category to Gameplay.
ShotgunSheamuS set Reproducibility to Always.
ShotgunSheamuS set Severity to Tweak.
ShotgunSheamuS set Resolution to Open.
ShotgunSheamuS set Legacy ID to 818709735.May 7 2016, 1:24 PM
XSnipa added a subscriber: XSnipa.May 7 2016, 1:24 PM
XSnipa added a comment.Apr 4 2013, 9:24 AM

Agreed. No vehicle should explode after taking enough of low but static damage from small arms fire.

Vehicle windows on the other hand should be destroyable with enough sustained fire to prevent someone becoming invincible just because opposing infantry has no explosives or launchers at hand. Surely not bulletproof glass can hold multiple magazines worth of bullets without breaking eventually, even in future.

Agreed, believe any surface will get weaker and destroyed after some point, however I also feel that should directly apply to the calliber of the rounds respectively.

but the subject really is just about the explosion of the car, but while on the subject, depending on the vehicle, a player should easily be shot in a non armored vehicle, even though the vehicle does not explode, so as to prevent people from just remaining in the car for safety. Bullets can easily penetrate standard non armoured vehicles in reality, so do the same in ArmA, especially when the car's health is reduced to zero.

Triada added a subscriber: Triada.May 7 2016, 1:24 PM
Triada added a comment.Apr 6 2013, 3:32 PM

Interesting idea! Voted up! But better just postpone the explosion longer

Mitor added a subscriber: Mitor.May 7 2016, 1:24 PM

Agreed. C'mon BIS this is a simulator, not GTA

kanzer added a subscriber: kanzer.May 7 2016, 1:24 PM

Agreed, This is an obvious oversight and something most people just assume thanks to mainstream Hollywood science.

A vehicle should be disabled by bullets and even with some explosives it might not explode altogether.

Take a look at this video, this is the marauder M-ATV, south African built (my home country) and it is put to the test, top gear style. And this is only the civilian version. Now this being an M-ATV, it is comparable to the oshkos M-ATV also known as the hunter in ARMA 3, and i soups assume the same goes for the ifrit. Basically this is how unstoppable an M-ATV is, and i would hope that in ARMA, the hunter and ifrit would be made in the same perspective in game. It should easily withstand high explosives, shrug off an rpg our two, even with direct shots to the tyres.

All this without going up in flames. So basically light weapons should practically have no effect in them, unless south Africa just develops better vehicles? Lol

Civilian vehicles,.and light military vehicles on the other hand, they may be prone to damage with light weapons, but as stated, they should not go up in flames. Think myth busters had also tested that even shooting the petrol tank with a tracer round won't ignite it, and most military vehicles run on diesel making it even harder.

But watch the vid... I do totally want this vehicle! And I'm ARMA these vehiclesmust be equally capable of doing everything this marauder can!

nmihaiv added a subscriber: nmihaiv.May 7 2016, 1:24 PM

I agree with almost everything you said. But there are some circumstances where small arms fire can light up a vehicle.
Normal bullets and ap bullets have close to 0 chance to do that but the tracer rounds do have a slightly higher chance to do that. Shooting the fuel tank with a tracer round will have let's say 30% chance of lighting it up.

actually much less chance, tracer rounds are likely to ignite a fuel tank, but you need to consider variables.

like for it to actually ignite the fuel tank there needs to be pressure, so your best bet is to hit the fuel tank with one tracer round, but the chances of that are very very slim, because fuel tank doesn't exactly sit very exposed, there's plenty of obstruction between the outside surface of a car and the fuel tank, also when you do manage to get through, it is more likely that the fuel tank will be riddled with so many holes there wont be any pressure at all.

And lastly, tracer rounds are generally weak because i think like half the mass is the substance that burns and lights up, so when that burns away the bullet becomes weaker over distance as it looses its mass, so penetrating the metal of a vehicle deep enough to even reach the fuel tank isn't most likely possible. as I said, the possibility is there, but instead of trying to simulate all of the above, just make vehicles NOT explode by small arms as it is highly unlikely, and that saves a lot of trouble of the devs side, and for us it makes vehicles a better form of cover... unless the opposing force has an RPG, then I dont mind the car being a secondary explosion as the chances are greater with explosives.

problem lies with simplicity of engine. When 100% damage is done - then vehicle explode. it requires more advanced changes into engine - that would be usable for damage modeling and penetration system (check 0007587) further.

bez added a comment.Jun 8 2013, 11:46 PM

From my own experience I have seen numerous cars set on fire.
(West bank, South lebanon, and gaza strip) yet none of them exploded.

The fuel just burns, it might get a sudden ignite from more fuel released
from the tank but the chances of an explosion even when the car is on fire
is slim to none.


pops added a comment.Jun 9 2013, 3:06 AM

Upvoted. I wanna see deflagrations (if anything) not detonations when vehicles come under small arms fire. No explosions! One could extend the damage model even to vehicle crashes. There are self sealing fuel tanks (afaik since WW2) and automatic engine shut offs in cars nowadays. I have seen way too many ATVs detonating in Arma 3, time for a change.

Bohemia added a subscriber: Bohemia.May 7 2016, 1:24 PM

I think they should have a very low rare chance to explode in any event (VERY LOW) AND if it has explosives and ammo they can cook off/get struck by fire (rare) exc.exc.

Suggestion: Each shot that hits a RED fuel tank have a tiny chance to cause a fire. NOT AN EXPLOSION. Just a fire that hurts people near by.

Well if the vehicles life reaches zero which causes explosion, which kinda makes sense in a way, then perhaps, make it not possible to reach zero with small arms??? Let there be something in the vehicle that cant be damaged by small arms to keep the vehicles life above zero. Even if it is just a little black box??? I guess you could say it is a short cut.

pops added a comment.Jun 27 2013, 2:46 AM

@ ataraxic89
Exactly. The key word is deflagration, a (relatively) slowly expanding flame (m/s), that can burn characters and other items nearby. Not a detonation (km/s). Run an ATV against a tree now in game and you have to run to stay clear of the massive detonation that follows. Ridiculous.

If you hit fuel tank or explosives in car.... but i vote UP :-)

Smurf added a subscriber: Smurf.May 7 2016, 1:24 PM
Smurf added a comment.Jul 19 2013, 4:27 PM

Not only small arms fire can explode a vehicle, which is bad, but crashing it also explode it, which is worst.

Imagine those Russian car crash compilation with explosive cars....

I think an implementation like
if(health == 0)

if(lastdamage caused by a missile/satchel)

would already be satisfying or at least an improvement.

No person disliked this thread 03.11.2013
How can a car without ammo of fuel kill a player in an explosion from gunfire?

All I know is that I've seen plenty of car crashes in my life and none of them ended up in fiery explosions, some burned but none of exploded in the Hiroshima-esque scale that Arma 3's vehicles do, if this is a military simulator then let's simulate some real physics and take out a lot of these Michael Bay special effects...


It's also pretty annoying when they explode because you hit a fence....

danczer added a subscriber: danczer.May 7 2016, 1:24 PM

Voted up! This definitely would be an improvement. If there isn't explosion then the vehicle should not explode.

Much more complex implementation could be checking what player hit on the vehicle(like car tank, ammunition, cargo with satchel), but i think the simplest is enough.

gutsnav added a subscriber: gutsnav.May 7 2016, 1:24 PM

Vehicles should only explode if their gas tanks are hit by tracer / explosive rounds. Normal rounds usually won't ignite the fuel. Instead of exploding (from normal rounds), there should only be a slim chance of an engine fire, and an explosion is highly unlikely.

pops added a comment.Mar 27 2014, 10:45 PM

This ticket should receive some special attention when Arma 3 gets the "Support, Refine, Invest" make-over.

This absolutely needs to be addressed.

khalme added a subscriber: khalme.May 7 2016, 1:24 PM
khalme added a comment.Apr 3 2014, 8:28 PM

This is something BI should have fixed since OFP. Maybe there's a technical reason for not implementing this, I don't know, but still it feels like a simple configuration tweak to do and important for the sake of realism.

I totaly agree here. Also when it explodes it is like the vehicle is filled with nitroglycerin and you die even if your several meters away. I saw another ticket about this here and it said that they are looking in to it, last year. But I still don't see a change.

Bumping this old ticket, it needs attention. Exploding civilian vehicles make no sense, previously even quads were exploding with explosion enough to destroy a tank nearby. At the moment best antitank strategy is suicide bombing with hatchback - just crash into tank, hatchback explodes and take out the tank. This needs to change.

I propose to remove explosion from all vehicles unless:
a) They're fuel trucks (fuel cargo > 0)
b) They're ammo trucks (ammo cargo > 0)
c) They're aircraft (Not sure if Hummingbird should explode like this though)
d) They're, tanks, artillery, have high caliber cannons, etc.

I propose to remove explosion from all vehicles unless:
a) They're fuel trucks (fuel cargo > 0)
b) They're ammo trucks (ammo cargo > 0)
c) They're aircraft (Not sure if Hummingbird should explode like this though)
d) They're, tanks, artillery, have high caliber cannons, etc.

I agree with everything SaMatra says. This is a military simulator therefore lets have it be realistic. Exploding vehicles such as quad bikes are used as exploits online and ruin realistic gameplay.

Upvoted. Personally i always also wished the vehicle explosion(s) (and/or size of them) would depend on the amount of fuel the vehicle has.

The more fuel inside it currently, the larger / more explosions there are.
Little to no fuel = no / very small explosions.

pops added a comment.Feb 14 2015, 5:37 PM

Explosion is a too general expression, there are refinements in existence:
Detonation (
Deflagration (
The main difference being the velocity with which a medium expands, m/s vs km/s, subsonic vs supersonic. Ammunition uses contained deflagrations to propel projectiles. Survivability depends greatly on this.

Proper explosives are required for a detonation to happen. But even when subjected to gunfire or fire some explosives do not detonate, especially those meant to be frequently handled by personnel (cue Mythbusters C4 montage).

The mechanisms are already included in the game from my observations:

  • deflagrations in the form of fire dealing damage to the environment and players/AI, but limited in range, can be avoided easily (for example: burning vehicle wrecks)
  • detonations as a result of a triggered explosive, impossible to run away from (as seen in: rockets and missiles, explosive charges and satchels, HEAT and HE rounds from armored vehicles)
  • detonations as a result of a critical hit or continuous burning of a vehicle loaded with ammunition (for example secondary detonations of recently destroyed armed vehicles)

These three mechanisms need to be balanced for a realistic representation.

  • Unarmed vehicles should never create a detonation. Period. Shooting up a fuel truck with small arms fire would not result in a detonation but fuel leaking with the chance of ignition (especially when using tracer ammo). The size of a deflagration should depend on the initial damage done to the vehicle/container. There is a fire damage mechanic, so use it properly!
  • Armed vehicles should create a detonation if hit with other high explosive rounds. Since ammunition alone doesn't always detonate when hit, the chance of secondary explosions must be balanced. The range and damage is also limited, but depends on the type of ammo (12.7 mm rounds vs 125 mm HEAT) and can be directional. 12.7 mm ammo cooking off wouldn't deal the same amount of damage as one fired from a gun barrel. HEAT rounds cooking off in a MBT would create one fireball and smaller explosions, propellant and warheads.
  • Airplanes and choppers could use a little refinement. Too often does a helicopter crash landing result in a huge detonation, especially when the chopper hit a tree on the way down or flips on the side. This should be part of another ticket though.
PiepMGI added a subscriber: PiepMGI.May 7 2016, 1:24 PM

Vehicles explode when global damage reaches 1. There are far more problems with vehicles damages "management" :

Agreed. I'd like to be able to use a shredded vehicle as cover instead of death no matter what when the vehicle explodes. If someone starts shooting and they blow it up even if i escape their bullets in time the explosion kills me.

You make so many modifications the the realism of the game. This seems like an easy fix. Just keep things from blowing up at 100 damage. This isn't hollywood. I'm pretty sure rockets don't blow up tanks either. They may severely damage them beyond repair and kill all the occupants but how often do they really blow up on the battlefield? They should become an unusable hulk and remain on the battlefield until server restart. Perhaps special exceptions of ammo and fuel trucks. But come on! This is a SIMULATOR! THIS ISN'T BATTLEFIELD!

just my two cents, i imagine this is quite possible even through modding, if any of you have played the Iron Front Liberation mod for Arma 3, the vehicles are really hard to blow up, cars seem to just loose parts it's more likely that a tanks crew will be killed by penetrating shots rather than the tank exploding, i haven't seen any mods out there that have come anywhere close to the IFL, however that being said the IFL mod is basically the whole game copied into arma 3

  • up voted

Damm good idea, but i think it's very hard to implement. There will must be restriction, controlled by ammunition type, so if las hit was made by explosice energy car will blow up, but if last hit was made by normal round, car will last with minimal "health status" so it would not explode. Or diferent way by creating script that will blow vehicle in some cases, but overall blowing car will not be so easly possible.