Guns, Lots of Guns
Tools of the trade, instruments of
destruction, the essence of armed combat: Guns. Without a
firearm, you're pretty useless on the battlefields of Ghost
Recon. Fortunately, there are a lot to choose from. Unfortunately,
it can be a little tough to pick 'em sometimes. Thus, I have
decided to put my accumulated knowledge of these electronic
replicas down on cyber-paper.
Automatic rifles are arguably the
most effective all round weapons. They have power, range and
versability. Riflemen with assault rifles usually make up
the bulk of the traditional infantry squad.
The smaller cousins of the assault
rifles. The carbines are shorter and more manouvreable, but
use rifle cartridges like the assault rifles. This makes them
easy to use and very deadly.
Light Machine Guns
LMGs are mainly used for fire support
and suppressive fire. They hold massive amounts of high-calibre
ammunition, they're large and heavy and not too accurate.
Use them to mow down groups of bad guys, or to keep said bad
guys pinned down behind cover.
Sub Machine Guns
SMGs are defined as shoulder-fired
weapons using pistol cartridges. They are very accurate and
manouvreable, but the rounds also have more trouble with punching
through heavier forms of body armour. Designed with close
quarter combat in mind, they aren't very effective over longer
When the target's far away and you
don't want to risk getting shot or detected, this is what
you need. With high-calibre rifle cartridges and high-powered
scopes, these babies grants you the capability to sit safely
in a bush high up and blow holes through hostiles a couple
of hundred metres away. Not very manouvreable, but very accurate
once you get settled in.
Back-up sidearms for those times when you run out of ammunition,
or have to clear out a building and that sniper rifle just
won't do the trick. Hardly the most effective weapons you
can get your hands on, but they can still save your butt in
Everybody's heard of the M16. Tried
and true, the M16 is the main battle rifle of several armies
and special operations groups.
Despite the short zoom, it's quite decent, accurate at long
distances and easy to wield. It comes with semi-automatic
and three round-burst trigger groups, which will save you
some ammunition, but full-auto fans will find themselves wishing
for something more.
Single-Player: All the standard Rifleman grunts carry
this one, as well as specialist "Buzz" Gordon. The
zoom is sufficient, as are the trigger groups. Keep it on
semi and double-tap the bad guys. It's manouvreable enough
to use even in CQB situations.
Multi-Player: It works, on some maps. If you can deal
with the short zoom, it's accurate enough to use for very
long-range shots. Still, it feels somewhat weak and inversatile
compared to the other assault rifles.
The Objective Individual Combat Weapon
- the assault rifle of the future, some might say. This is
basically a beefed-up M16A2. It has more zoom and a full-auto
option, in addition to semi-automatic and three round-burst.
For additional zoom, don't use the 20mm grenade launcher attachment.
Single-Player: This is only available through two of
the specialists, Will Jacobs and Lindy Cohen. It's a formidable
rifle with a very impressive zoom and range. Quite accurate
and powerful, one might almost call it a full-auto sniper
rifle. Use it to take down the enemy from afar.
Multi-Player: While it lacks the manouvreability of
a true CQB weapon, setting it to full-auto still makes it
lethal at close ranges. Otherwise, this is mainly a long-range
weapon. Zoom in and blow them away before they even see you.
Pretty much a shortened M16. It's
capable of either semi- or full-auto firing modes, it's manouvreable
and an excellent short-range weapon.
Single-Player: Standard Demo Experts carry these. They'll
do the trick - the zoom is short like the M16, but it's fairly
accurate. Good for both long- and short-range engagements,
it's a versatile weapon, good for nearly all missions.
Multi-Player: Use this when you need a small, light
weapon with good stopping power for CQB. Set to semi-automatic,
it can be used for longer ranges in a pinch, but the short
zoom will make it a tad difficult compared to some of the
Like the M4, the SA80 is easy to
use and with plenty of stopping power. That, however, is where
the similarities end. The SA80 has a larger zoom and less
recoil, making it a very good weapon.
Single-Player: Specialist Nigel Tunney packs this one,
and thanks to that he's pretty much turned into a Rifleman-slash-Demo
Expert. It has surprisingly little recoil, allowing you to
effortlessly mow down groups of baddies using full-auto mode.
It has long range and good zoom, making it good for long-range
shots as well.
Multi-Player: Many players swear by the SA80, and it
is indeed quite good. This is an assaulter's weapon, with
a fast aim and little recoil. CQB or long-range, it works
for both. A superb weapon.
Short zoom, not too accurate, but
with a whopping 200 rounds of ammunition to spray around and
Single-Player: As a support weapon, the M249 is carried
by the standard Support Experts. Open up on hostiles and watch
them flee for cover and keep their heads down, allowing your
teammembers to get into better positions. It's ideal for taking
down larger groups of hostiles, though only at close range.
It is possible to do long-range shots with it as well by clicking
quickly and firing only one or two rounds at a time. A.I.-controlled
operatives with high 'Firearms' ratings will also be able
to mow down resistance with little effort.
Multi-Player: Pretty much
useless unless you're battling on small maps, such as the
multi-player only ones. Since human players realize it's fairly
hard to hit anything when going full-auto, thanks to the recoil,
suppressive fire probably won't work quite as well as with
A.I. enemies. Fire in bursts and try to be as close as possible
when opening up.
A souped-up M249 with more powerful
rounds, but only 100 rounds to play around with at a time.
Single-Player: Specialist Dieter Munz hauls this fast-firing
cannon around. Other than the lower ammunition count and more
terrifying sound, it's not really very different from the
Multi-Player: A very good CQB weapon, and the loud
sound is bound to give someone the heebie-jeebies every now
and then. Use it the same way as the M249, at short range
and in short bursts.
weakest of the LMGs, with only 75 rounds in the magazine and
barely able to hit a barn wall at twenty metres.
Single-Player: Specialist Guram Osadze carries the
RPK74 and makes a decent back-up Support Expert if you need
one. It does have one thing the other LMGs lack, however:
a semi-automatic mode. Use this for long-range shots, then
move in for the kill. Note that you'll have to move in even
closer with this one, due to the lower accuracy.
Multi-Player: Every weapon is lethal in the right hands,
and this is no exception. The addition of semi-automatic capabilities
might possibly make it more versatile, and it certainly is
capable of quite long shots. At very close quarters it's just
as good as the other LMGs, and should be used in the same
Small, light, easy to use, but with
oh-so-little stopping power. At longer ranges, that is. In
CQB, this thing is deadly, with just a couple of shots doing
the trick in most cases.
Single-Player: Specialist Klaus Henkel uses the MP5.
It's good for CQB, but not much else. It has the accuracy
to make long-range shots, but the zoom and power negates it.
Multi-Player: If the map is small, this will easily
do the trick. Get in close and in their faces, then spray
them full. Avoid using it at large maps, as it will take quite
a few rounds before the enemy goes down, and in that time
they can return fire with a more powerful weapon.
Same as the MP5, but with an integrated
Single-Player: Used by specialists Henry Ramirez and
Susan Grey, it comes in handy for missions where you'd rather
not get detected too easily. Thanks to the suppressor, it's
easier to use at longer ranges - it'll still take several
shots, but since they can't hear the shots, they won't be
able to home in on you as quickly.
Multi-Player: The ultimate weapon for those stealthy
players who prefer to sneak around and shoot others in the
back. The MP5SD is completely inaudiable, and the only way
to figure out where the shots are coming from is by using
the Threat Indicator. This will help you create confusion
among the enemy troops, as they see their comrades go down,
but they have no gunfire to calculate your position from.
Was their teammates shot from that bush, or perhaps the cliff,
or was it that window over there? Mainly a CQB weapon, it
can - like in single-player - be used for long-range shots
with less risk.
Small magazine capacity, short zoom
and lack of stopping power makes this rifle somewhat poor.
It's bolt-action, which slows it down a little.
Single-Player: Used by the standard Sniper Experts,
it'll do the trick for the first few missions. Fire from a
prone or crouched position and aim for the head.
Multi-Player: Sniper rifles are hard to master and
seldom used online. Hardly a weapon to use while on the move,
your best bet is to conceal yourself in a bush or similar.
The fact that the rifle itself is camouflaged might help a
The Barrett 'Light Fifty' is a huge
rifle, and as an anti-material rifle it's really intended
for use against vehicles and structures, not people (in fact,
anti-personnel use is in violation of the Genéva Convention).
Easily the most powerful rifle available, it'll punch through
targets with ease. Semi-automatic.
Single-Player: Specialist Scott Ibrahim's weapon-of-choice,
it comes with a powerful zoom that'll let you make out the
eye colour of the enemies, and loaded with the powerful .50
calibre cartridge, it'll punch through combat boots, helmets,
and everything in-between. Get into a stable position far,
far away - and start picking 'em off.
Multi-Player: Perfect for setting up defensive positions
on large maps, especially when overlooking a bottleneck. Stay
put and hit them hard from afar.
The second bolt-action rifle, but
fortunately a lot better than the M24. It has ten rounds per
magazine and it's quite accurate. The zoom is good, though
no match for the M82 and SVD.
Single-Player: Brought into 'The Ghosts' by specialist
Jack Stone early on, this will quickly become a replacement
for the M24. The better zoom will be sufficient for a while,
as will the power. It's bolt-action, so make sure they go
down on the first shot - otherwise you might not get the chance
for a follow-up shot.
Multi-Player: It doesn't have the best zoom around,
but you'll still be able to hit from a fair distance. As with
the other sniper rifles, stay put and stay concealed.
The forth and final sniper rifle
is a semi-automatic with a good zoom and lots of stopping
power. While no match for the M82, it does have less recoil,
making it easier to maintain fire.
Single-Player: Specialist Astra Galinsky uses the
SVD to good effect. It's surprisingly similar to the M82,
so for the sake of simplicity, use it in the same way.
Multi-Player: This, too, is perfect for covering bottlenecks
and the like while on the defense. Good zoom and power to
boot. Less recoil makes this easier to use against multiple
The Beretta M9 - a not-too-powerful
sidearm which you'll hopefully never have to resort to unless
in 'Pistol Only' games.
Single-Player: If you have a primary weapon with ammunition
left, chances are you won't be needing this one. Exceptions
are snipers, whose rifles won't cut it when they have to get
into the fray and clear a building or get rid of hostiles
that have come too close for comfort. Aim and shoot, not much
more to it. Just be prepared to spend quite a few rounds,
unless you're good at headshots.
Multi-Player: If you run out of ammunition with your
primary weapon and don't have time to reload, it might be
a good time to whip out the M9. Otherwise it should be safely
tucked away in the holster at all times. If you like to take
chances, however, you could attempt to use your sidearm if
you've managed to successfully sneak up on an enemy. Then
you may proceed to taunt said enemy for as long as you like,
assuming you kill him with the pistol.
Not much difference here, except
for the addition of a suppressor.
Single-Player: Same as the un-suppressed M9, use for
dire cases where you're out of ammunition, or for clearing
buildings and close baddies with a sniper. You can also use
it if your primary is un-suppressed and you don't feel like
waking up the neighbourhood "just yet".
Multi-Player: No difference here either, use it when
you're out of ammunition with no time for a reload, or when
sneaking up on people. When sneaking up on someone, firing
the M9 SD from a concealed position will make it difficult
for them to return fire accurately, and will most likely cause
them to panic.