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Pistols do unrealistically low amounts of damage
Assigned, WishlistPublic


the pistols in arma3 are pretty much useless because of the lack of ability to kill or injure another player/AI.

I did a small test and placed some Opfor in the editor and shot them with the pistol at different ranges (5m, 10m, 25m, 50m). I can understand if at 25 or 50 meters the bullet will have little chance to kill or even injure the enemy but i was shocked to see that it still took 3-5 shots to kill the man at 5 meters (This test was to shoot at the body not at the head). after considering that they were wearing some form of armor i did the same test on a civilian and got the exact same results.

i am aware that head shots will most likely kill then enemy but it is not a reliable place the aim for especially at a distance.


Legacy ID
Steps To Reproduce

open the editor

place a civilian and a player (with a pistol)

shoot at the civi in the chest, back, or gut

observe that he doesn't die until the 3-5 shot

Additional Information

I am no expert on firearms but i know that a 9mm bullet is bigger than a 6.5mm or a 7.62mm (obviously) i am also aware that a pistol's bullet has a very different aerodynamic shape to rifle bullets and at 5 meters the pistol bullet will cause the most damage because of its lower muzzle velocity and its larger size/flatter shape however the pistol bullet will lack in penetrating power so i can understand if it fails to penetrate armor.

Event Timeline

Scorpion edited Steps To Reproduce. (Show Details)May 17 2013, 8:35 AM
Scorpion edited Additional Information. (Show Details)
Scorpion set Category to Gameplay.
Scorpion set Reproducibility to Always.
Scorpion set Severity to None.
Scorpion set Resolution to Open.
Scorpion set Legacy ID to 2095374414.May 7 2016, 2:08 PM
Khan added a comment.May 17 2013, 1:02 PM

What's your difficulty settings? Do you have extended armor on? If on, soldiers withstand much more punishment than normal.

dovafox added a subscriber: dovafox.May 7 2016, 2:08 PM

^ Explains.
I posted a issue about this too, found out it was the extended armor. The extended armor turns off when in the hardest difficulty.

in reply to Khan

I have it on veteran difficulty and have never had extended armor on.
i use a somewhat custom difficulty however the latest dev update may have changes some setting temporarily because it did for some time create a new profile so i will find out today :)

I really wish the whole difficulty thing was not the case, I wish they had the same armor as us just with better skill or is that extended armor an optional thing?

paravbs added a subscriber: paravbs.May 7 2016, 2:08 PM

It's completely realistic to have to shoot someone multiple times with a 9mm handgun. I was personally involved in a RL shooting where I fired four rounds, scoring three hits (two to the torso and one to the right thigh) from less than fifteen feet away, and the perp ~ran away~ after being shot. I know SWAT officers who have had to shoot suspects in excess of 15 times with 9mm handguns to drop them. The 9mm round is ineffective at immediately stopping the threat, which is partially because the 9mm round is so ~light~ and moving so ~fast~ that it tears right through the suspect. This is why many police departments have moved away from the 9mm round and back to the 45ACP or to the 40S&W or even .357 Sig.

in reply to "paravbs"

I can understand if the man got away after being shot three times and i personally have never shot a gun before but should it not incapacitate the enemy for at least a moment rather than instantly returning fire.

this is also something that i am not to sure about but I thought that a bullet bigger then a 9mm would have a higher chance to penetrate the enemy because of the extra energy (i also thought that a 9mm had a lower muzzle velocity compared to the 45 but like i said i am no expert i have only read these "facts" from different sources)

samogon added a subscriber: samogon.May 7 2016, 2:08 PM

I thing hitting by 9mm round must have negative effect,like small risign up weapon,that dissallow you aiming,or increasing of fatigue.Or even both.

I think this is more of a larger issue in which AI just don't respond to being shot the way they should. But there are a lot of things the AI don't have to deal with that we do. They seem to suffer from very little pain, very little recoil, etc. But 3-5 rounds against a trained member of the military from a 9mm isn't all that unrealistic.
It'd be nice if AI was a really lousy shot after being shot themselves. Usually when "perps" take a couple of rounds from a 9mm, they run screaming and firing blindly behind them, they don't stay still and calmly place a shot into your cranium.
As for the energy of 9mm, it's a high energy, high velocity round with very little drag in the body, so they tend to cause less actual damage despite having as much energy behind them as they do. Penetration is a weird thing, because you can actually have "too much" of it. The best possible scenario when you're trying to inflict damage is to have a round penetrate much of the target's body but stop in a large cavity created by the round driving through the target (or even better, tumbling). Too much penetration, or too little volume/mass makes for a smaller cavity and therefore less damage. And the 9mm, despite usually having nearly the same (often more) muzzle energy, and much higher muzzle velocity (Approximately 1200 vs 800, for example) just doesn't cause as much damage.
And just for comparision on the energy of a 9mm vs a 7.62, it's the difference between approximately 500 joules for the 9mm and 1700 for the 7.62, to give you an idea of why the 7.62 is so potent. Interestingly, it's actually a fairly slow round at least at the muzzle compared to the 9mm, but obviously the lack of mass makes the 9mm lose that much faster at range. A lot more than how fast and wide a bullet is goes into the damage it does. It's all about the cavity made by the round passing through flesh, it's likelihood to strike organs/bones, and how well it stays together. And those are all complex mechanics that depend on a number of different variables.

i understand perfectly and also agree 100%

i have another reported issue about the AI's response to being shot with is like what you have just mentioned.

MordeaniisChaos, you've got your numbers all mixed up. Pistols with 9mm ammunition have around 400m/s muzzle velocity generally, while battle rifles have 800-900m/s. I think you confused feets-per-second with meters-per-second.

humans are stronger than u think. aim for the head.

Handguns are useless indeed.
In Showcase: SCUBA you can prone behind the car and shoot the guys on the other side of it with a whole magazine and in a combination of handguns doing nearly no damage and ridiculous recoil you're only likely to take down one guy.

The effective range on those damn things are like 5 meters ATM.

p00d73 added a subscriber: p00d73.May 7 2016, 2:08 PM

It would be nice if people that get hit center mass with a pistol wouldn't instantly die, but would bleed out quickly (30s max).

@Sneakson i have killed regularly with the P07 at 100 - 120m

Still an issue. Example:
Delta Force operators train center-mass double-tap with M1911 pistol (.45ACP) for guaranteed kill (See Inside Delta Force book). Currently, ACP-C2 requires 3 body hits on unarmored target to achieve kill.

EDIT: Yes, I know about Mozambique drill and triple-tap, but that's an exception, not a rule.

Bohemia added a subscriber: Bohemia.May 7 2016, 2:08 PM

if we got pass out again, maybe 2 or 3 shots pass out, 6 shots kill