Fast Rope for Helicopters

So I’d like to bring up fast roping since it was a topic that a few players and I were brainstorming about last night on Server #1 in the TS channel. I usually just come on here to read the comments and get ideas but I was more or less voluntold to put something up about it so here I am. I’ll ask that everyone throw some input on this one to get the best idea if this is something that can be done.

It was brought up that fast roping went away due to the fact that troops were rappelling out of the heli while pilots were still in transit which ended in the ropes getting caught in the props. You can image how that ends (hint: not pretty).

There was supposedly a safeguard on this which didn’t allow troops to rappel unless the landing gear was down. Some knew this and some didn’t. In the end, it was a great idea for the helicopters that had retractable gear but left the ones with skids/rails open to disaster.

The players that wanted it back started discussing possible safeguards and a few ideas were brought up. All ideas gave the pilot control over when troops could deploy ropes.

Idea 1: The pilot deploys the ropes and an automated message is displayed, either in center of the players screen or in the chat area, that said ropes were deployed and troops were go for rappel.

Idea 2: Pilots can lock/unlock the fast rope feature via scroll wheel command. This command may be useful near a common used item such as auto-hover or engine off to ensure pilots see the newly added feature.

At the end of the day all ideas were great and we ended up asking one of the newer pilots what his take was. Although he mainly flew jets, his feeling that the scroll wheel lock/unlock option would be best. That seemed to be the general consensus amongst players of all levels.

Focus began to shift from bringing the feature back to how is the word going to be spread that pilots now have control. There are players who don’t read the rules or updates so the workaround was to have this control in a common area of use for all pilots to see.

It was great being able to hover over a steep incline or tight LZ without landing and still getting troops down safely. It wasn’t so nice when someone didn’t know about inadvertently tiring the worlds worst knot in the helicopter blades causing a fatal crash for all. This small yet important detail may be worth looking deeper into. What’s everyone else’s ideas and thoughts on this?

We very much appreciate comments to help improve the servers. If anyone else has suggestions regarding rappel please feel free to continue the thread. We did look into allowing the pilot to unlock the rappel, but you have to understand the impact on performance. To allow the pilot to unlock the rappel for the players in a given vehicle, you have to find out which players are in the vehicle, which is a performance hit, then you have to find out what position the players are in i.e. pilot, co-pilot or passenger, which is another performance hit. The worst performance hit is to constantly check, for when the pilot unlocks the option, which has to be done every frame. We need to decide if it is worth the performance, fps hit.

We are prioritizing changes to the server and we will look into it again.

As a side note, players can drop from ~20m without any injury. I know it takes away from the immersion, but you can still hover and have players exit the heli on uneven ground or elevated LZ’s. This at least is a solution until we can look at a rappel solution.

I was wondering how much of a performance hit it would be to add that back in. I’m sure that everyone would rather have a smooth running game instead of adding that at a cost. The 20m drop is a good touch and a viable solution that seems like a good compromise. I’ll be sure to pass this along to the other pilots. Thanks for the info, Vile.

This doesn’t work for all helicopters, but for the Ghost Hawk, Huron, M-900 and Little Bird, (and sometimes Hellcat) you can put the nose of your helicopter into the side of a slope and use it to anchor your position while troops unload or load in. It depends on the incline of the hill, but most places in Altis this is viable. Its also viable on Stratis. I have not flown enough on Maladen to see if it is viable there on some of the steeper inclines.

I saw that on one of the Art of Flight videos by Dslyecxi and tried it for the first time the other night in a Hellcat. It didn’t work out, the tail just plopped down as I nosed into the hill. Good news is that it didn’t take any damage and all passengers got out. If you have to land on a slope and you point your nose down the hill when you take off it works much better than taking off backwards. Haven’t tried it with any other heli’s but I might give it a shot tonight. Skill takes a certain role in these landings which adds something to practice and gives you a chance to challenge yourself.