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Flashlights goes through wall [PRIMARY REPORT]
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This is ruining loot at night because its like a beacon saying where you are, the flashlight is just going through any wall.


18/12/13 @ 2141 - Made Primary bug report for this issue ~ Mag.

  • {F28200} {F28201} {F28202} {F28203} {F28204}


Legacy ID
Steps To Reproduce

Pick a flashlight and aim to a wall while inside a construction

Event Timeline

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Yep i saw this one alot, i was chasing after a guy so we could team up and it took me 10 minutes because his light kept phasing through multiple walls

This is a Arma 3 bug as well. I doubt this will get fixed anytime soon.

Specially very visible when upper floors because most time you point down and everyone else are below you then. So vote for this issue. Patience ppl tho...

iyeado added a subscriber: iyeado.May 8 2016, 2:03 PM

Saw this a lot as well.

tracked a guy down because his flashlight was going through a couple warehouse walls.

yeah can be very annoying when looting in major town area ..

Will695 added a subscriber: Will695.May 8 2016, 2:03 PM

haha was just posting this issue, seen this also.

I'll start using flashlights more once this is patched. Does anyone know if this also happens with headlamps?

Muck added a subscriber: Muck.May 8 2016, 2:03 PM
Muck added a comment.Dec 18 2013, 1:14 PM

Same Problem

It's probably because there are no walls

Also happens with gas lamps.

azra1l added a subscriber: azra1l.May 8 2016, 2:03 PM

guess its an engine thing, as it also happened in arma before.

definelty game breaking, as using any light source inside a building will ultimativly expose your position to anyone within view distance.

this is even more of an issue for people like me, who are bound to play on night servers for now. this is, once they finally fix the gamma/brightness cheat.

asd added a comment.Dec 19 2013, 11:58 AM

I have managed to kill a guy yesterday even if he was hiding inside a barn thanks to this bug !

imun added a subscriber: imun.May 8 2016, 2:03 PM
imun added a comment.Dec 19 2013, 3:40 PM

True,and there should be some Ambient Light if flashlight is on.

anyone test out if it do the same on double wall or complete building.
I know ambient ligth would be more realistic and may come in further patch, but like it is rigth now makes it kind of creepy and i like it.

This happens in buildings when you have shadows off, IIRC.

Rieker added a subscriber: Rieker.May 8 2016, 2:03 PM

yeah it deters people from using a flashlight at night so people just up the brightness and gamma it takes away from the immersion of the game

Bohemia added a subscriber: Bohemia.May 8 2016, 2:03 PM

Flashlights, as well as the day/night cycle, are the most annoying thing atm for me personally. Also left-handed melee weapons...

This is why i don't play at night

  1. You Turn on the light.
  1. A zombie see your light throught a wall.
  1. The zombie walks throught the wall and hit you, making you bleed.

^This makes me mad

They're never gonna fix it..
This glitch has been in arma games FOR AGES

There are two problems with this bug. First of all, it makes the use of artificial light very dangerous for all players. Second of all, it makes new players, who aren't aware of this bug, extremely vulnerable. Those of us who know about the bug simply choose not to use flashlights. Those players who aren't aware of it are just going to get confused and frustrated as they don't know how they are being tracked.

I understand this bug likely results from a core engine limitation and may not even be fixable. If that is the case, I sincerely believe that all light sources should DISCLOSE that they 'are so bright that they can be seen through walls' in their in-game descriptions. It's just such an unfair advantage to those of us who know about this bug.

app0815 added a subscriber: app0815.May 8 2016, 2:03 PM

I'm starting to think the same way Dagonath put it.

This should be a priority, this is pretty much game-breaking.

This needs to be fixed.

Unknown Object (User) added a subscriber: Unknown Object (User).May 8 2016, 2:03 PM
Unknown Object (User) added a comment.Dec 23 2013, 7:25 PM

Definitely not good for those using flashlight instead of gamma.

I think this needs to be tested on original buildings versus newly implemented buildings, something may not have been put in correctly (I don't have the time to test this atm).

^Been an issue with arma games for some time hopefully they can fix it like they fixed handguns showing up in holsters!

Lanter added a subscriber: Lanter.May 8 2016, 2:03 PM

This is the largest issue I have with night time. It's either down to using the flash light, very effectively fucking yourself over, or boosting up the gamma, very effectively fucking other folks over.

nelapsi added a subscriber: nelapsi.May 8 2016, 2:03 PM

That's Arma, dude. You pay money and then you suffer a lot. They cant fix this shit for YEARS

I can't believe that they can make godrays be stopped by tree branches, but they can't make flashlights be stopped by walls. This needs to be fixed, no engine excuses.

asd added a comment.Dec 25 2013, 7:14 PM

Hope they fix all these bugs. This game had huge revenues and they have no excuse now. Either fix it or I'm going to delete the game.Atm it's in the alpha stage so we can wait a little

klutch added a subscriber: klutch.May 8 2016, 2:03 PM

this is probably one of the biggest issue with the game currently

It's a problem with the engine, I don't think they can fix this, maybe if Arma 4 ever happens, but I strongly doubt it.

Gorvi added a subscriber: Gorvi.May 8 2016, 2:03 PM
Gorvi added a comment.Feb 9 2014, 10:23 AM

BI unfortunately couldn't get deferred lighting and shadows into ARMA 3 before release. It was a huge engine change and other features took priority. Thankfully, DayZ is still in alpha.

Its very badly bug. (

Yeah, this is one of the major problems with night time that I hope gets fixed. having a light flash through a window is one thing, but it feels like you're a lighthouse for bandits when looting with a flashlight at the moment. Fixing this will make looting at night a little bit safer.

Rocket's comments on this limitation with the renderer:

Replacing the renderer is something that's going to happen eventually, but there's no telling if dynamic shadows will be part of it, due to performance concerns.

Definitely not impossible, and the fact that Arma hasn't fixed this is no indication that it won't be fixed, because DayZ is not following the Arma development patterns at all, and Arma has never completely replaced their renderer. I shouldn't use the word "fixed" since it isn't a bug, simply a result of not having dynamic shadows. Dynamic shadows were simply not something BIS deemed worth the performance hit for Arma 3. If Rocket and his team can find a way to balance it in the new renderer, there's a good chance it will be in.

Ounissi added a subscriber: Ounissi.May 8 2016, 2:03 PM

Please fix it

Clark added a subscriber: Clark.May 8 2016, 2:03 PM
Clark added a comment.Jan 27 2014, 9:27 PM

I have had the same problem I have watched my friends enter a building and turn on their Flashlight and it shines through walls it will also put a spotlight on anything that is outside the area

I agree with psalm, maybe this could be an immediate solution by now, when the player is holding the light, but not when leaving it in some place.

I have seen that is not only the "light through the wall" problem, I played two days ago and I saw the wall outside the building like pointing the light source outside the building and right in front of the source, so it looks like someones is pointing the wall outside in the opposite direction.

And for all talking about this as an ARMA issue, yes, is true, I found it out int he mod after being killed lots of times and then see other players with the same light problem, so, maybe this will not be easy to archieve.

psalm added a comment.Jan 27 2014, 8:07 PM

Just a suggestion, perhaps go the route of Left 4 Dead with the light sources. Essentially, only the player can see their own light beams from flashlights, but the other players can not. I know it's not "realistic" but neither is seeing lights shining through walls, and it just seems to be limitation of current generation hardware to be unable to render so many dynamic shadows at once with any decent framerate. The alternative, is to leave light sources completely broken, ruining 1/2 of server uptime. At least this way, the players experience is positive.

Yep. same thing here. Kinda sad if youre into a house and it looks like a freakin disco from the outside..

There should be some Ambient Light if flashlight is on like in real.
In army you learn to use it as little as possible.....

Maxyz added a subscriber: Maxyz.May 8 2016, 2:03 PM

I wouldn't get my expectations too high on this. Frankly I wouldn't get my expectations at all. It was said several times already - fixing this is gonna require tremendous amount of work and what's more important that if fixed it's gonna require too much computing power, i.e. system requirements are gonna go into the future, like double SLI GeForce 990 Ti or something =). The game cannot propely compute more than 4 dinamic light sourses at once, and you want flashlights not to shine through the walls - forget it, it's not gonna happen.

Well if something (in this case the engine) is broken there are three options to resolve the problems it's giving: fix it, improvise or get a new one. In this stage I'm guessing it would be best to improvise.

Can't this issue be fixed with some kind of status check? The main problem is when you are inside, you don't want people to know you're there, so you don't want textures outside the building to be lit when you are inside. Textures could be divided into 2 categories: textures on (1)the inside of a building and (0)other textures. Then with a regular status check perhaps there can be checked if a player is (1)inside a building or (0)not inside a building. So I'm thinking something along the lines of: If PlayerInside=1 then the only textures affected by flash light textures with the status attribute TextureInside=1

I'm not an expert, but that would be a way I'd try to solve the problem. It would probably result in not being able to shine outside through a door or a window, and have textures in the buildings next to you be lit as well. But I think it we'd all prefer that to how it functions now.

Keep up the good work ;)

emenius added a subscriber: emenius.May 8 2016, 2:03 PM

^No, none of that is practical. Unfortunately they will have to fix the models, if its because:

  1. the wall face("|") is not intersecting with the floor("_"), which would look like an upside down "T", it should be connected at right angles, like "L" so no light "seeps" out the bottom. I've seen this before in another engine if I remember correctly.

Or the engine:

  1. the dynamic lights were not programmed very well in the engine. Almost like no raycast collision is done. I think Rocket might be thinking of playing with the shadows for the dynamic light, so the wall casts a shadow, hence him saying it's expensive.

They might need the original programmer to fix it, but since it's in arama3 still... I'm sad about it:( Does anyone know if street lights shine through walls? Probably static lights though.


A dynamic light needs dynamic shadows to properly obscure it. The graphical engine currently has no dynamic shadows, and is not likely to get them. An entirely new graphical engine has been talked about briefly in the past, but this is a huge task and requires separating the game from the renderer. The two are currently tied up in each other, as that how it has always been in Arma.

Street lights are static and so do not need dynamic shadows to avoid shining through other static objects like walls.

Cool thanks for the insight, you seem to know a lot about this for a "reporter". I hope they can do it. For me it would just be a game breaker in my mind if I were Rocket. I would be just like, "fuck it, fix it". Maybe just have another team work on that in a corner for the next 12 months.

The sun does cast shadows doesn't it?

The (dynamic) street lights go through walls btw.

Flashlight/headlamps still shining through walls on build 37.115791. Wasn't sure if the graphics fixes/adds around the lights was intended to fix this effect. I add a inside/outside screenshot of a headlamp on the floor as well.

This hasn't been fixed and won't be fixed without a dramatic change to the game rendering engine. The current manner of rendering doesn't allow buildings to prevent light going through. This is why sun glare, street lights and other light sources shine through walls. This is a major issue if they want to get night time play to be an enjoyable experience, but it will also be a long time before it gets fixed.

If they make a change to using OpenGL, then the issue can be resolved.

Glad we have an expert here to tell us the facts. I would like to know technical details as to why this won't work. I mean, anything is possible, it's a matter of programming. But yes, I don't THINK it will be easy, but great things never are.

Yes, anything can be programmed, but if the render engine doesn't have the ability to do the thing you want to program, you simply can't do it. You are bound by the limitations of the engine you are using. It's simply not possible to fix this issue with the current render engine. This particular issue existed in Arma 2 and is still an issue with Arma 3 and DayZ SA.

Well the engine is made by the company that owns Dayz, ya? Just look at Source engine(and CRYENGINE). They just keep updating it, and the devs at Titanfall seemed to have drastically altered the look of the rendering for it.

I really would like someone to explain it, cause I don't get why not.(edit: other than not willing to due to money/time)

If the render engine doesn't have the ability then the logical thing would be to do what? Give it the ability.
The question being how practical that is of course.

Hello everyone,

The devs had a look at the issue and unfortunately, at this point in time it is indeed not possible to fix due to engine limitations. However, the devs are currently reworking the renderer. Once work on the renderer is done, we will assess the situation and see what things look like at that point in time.