An important post about incorrect reload times

I posted this on Reddit, and I’ll post it again here to get it as much visibility as possible.

Many weapons in the game have their reload timers, the time it takes for the ammo to be added to your HUD and safely interrupt the animation, set incorrectly. While they should all be fixed, some are more significant problems than others, even to the point of being balance issues. From a non-gameplay perspective it’s also very cringe-inducing to see it happen, especially when the game encourages e-sports play, where gameplay trumps all and every advantage is used, including abusing these errors.
This is something I first noticed in the Beta and unfortunately it wasn’t corrected for the final game. Here is a video showcasing every reload animation in the game slowed down by 50%. Please note that slowing them down is not at all required to see or experience these issues, it simply aides with clarity and looks pretty.

Over the past year and a half or so I’ve been very active in Battlefield 4’s Community Test Environment program, and the reason this is relevant is I’ve spent considerable time working directly with DICE LA’s Lead Weapon Designer and Lead Weapon Animator on correcting the exact sort of issues we’re about to look at in this thread. If you’re a BF4 player then you’re familiar with the two massive gameplay patches released this year; the massive lists of weapon tweaks and corrects (aside from damage/recoil stats) were my handiwork. This will unfortunately always sound like boasting, but I hope most of you will understand I’m simply trying to establish I do know what I’m dealing with here.

One final thing to address is how a couple of things are supposed to work, things which I’d consider intuitive but it’s good to put them here anyway. Ammo should add to a gun when said gun is ready to fire, or more specifically, when the final action needed by the user is performed. The other thing is that in Halo, guns with both a loaded and empty reload animation will always have the animations be the same length, because that’s not a gameplay element.
The major issue with ammo adding too early is that with all the new movement abilities in H5, you’re almost guaranteed to be trying to use one of right after a reload. In some cases it’s so far off that double-tapping switch weapons is faster than waiting it out. Also keep in mind that correcting these only affects when you can interrupt an animation, not the actual reload length.

Let’s get into the list.

  • Binary Rifle. Perfect. Ammo is added when new cartridge is put in place by Spartan, gun does the rest.

  • LightRifle. Perfect. Ammo is added when Spartan pushes top cover into place, gun does the rest.

  • Suppressor. Problem. Ammo is added when cartridge is loaded. Ammo should be added when top cover is pushed down, just like the LightRifle.

  • Scattershot. Perfect. Ammo adds with each cartridge. Flipping closed does not need to be accounted for given how it’s done.

  • Boltshot. Problem. Same issue and solution as the Suppressor.

  • Fuel Rod Gun. Problem. Oh my, is it ever. Ammo is added while the Spartan’s hand is still offscreen. Ammo should be added as Spartan pushes the magazine into place, but before the gun’s mini arms/teeth grab it.

  • Plasma Caster. Problem. Same problem as Fuel Rod Gun. Ammo should be added as Spartan finishes twisting cartridge into place.

  • Carbine. Perfect. Ammo is added as Spartan closes top cover.

  • Needler. Perfect (I guess?). It’s a Needler, it doesn’t really reload, but the ammo is added the moment the needles reappear, so I’d say that’s perfect.

  • SPNKr. Problem. Ammo is added when barrels are placed. Ammo should be added the moment the top cover is closed.

  • Rocket Launcher. Perfect. It’s as flawless as the Binary Rifle.

  • Hydra. Perfect. Ammo is added as the launcher grabs/“eats” the inserted missile.

  • Railgun. Problem. Well, we know why Whiplash is so absurdly powerful; ammo is added when the cartridge is inserted. Ammo should be added the moment the top cover latches closed.

  • Sniper Rifle. Perfect AND Problem. This is an animation problem. Loaded reload is flawless, which means the empty reload (which is the same ammo add time) should be flawless, but it isn’t. Animation for empty reload should have you swap magazines much faster, as in both Reach and H4, making both animations the same length. H5 simply added the charging animation after the normal mag swap. >.<

  • SAW. Problem.. Ammo adds when drum is attached. Ammo should be added when drum is locked into place.

  • Shotgun. Perfect AND Problem.. Ammo adds with shells perfectly, but the gun is pumped on non-empty reloads, which it shouldn’t be; Halo: CE is still the only Halo game to do this correctly. Also, like the Sniper Rifle the pump animation can therefore be completely skipped when empty, and the gun can be fired when empty before being pumped. See below for more on this.

  • DMR/BR/AR/SMG. Problem.. All four reload with the two step system of Place Mag/Slap Mag when loaded and Fully Insert Mag/Charge Weapon when empty. As was said, this is so the timers will match both animations, with the gun not properly loaded until the same time it’s cocked when empty. Except the ammo adds with the first step, not the second, defeating the purpose. Ammo should be added when the mag is slapped in (loaded) and charging handle is used (empty).

  • Magnum. Perfect. Should have the same Warzone variants as the other loadout weapons, but that’s another topic. :3

Aside from the Sniper Rifle and Shotgun, every single one of these can be fixed by simply changing the timer value. For all the things in games that are complex, this is a piece of cake.

The Sniper Rifle would need a new empty reload animation, or even just having the existing one sped up (either the whole thing or just the mag swap) to match the ammo timer. I know animation is far more work than the timers so I won’t hold my breath for this one.

As for the Shotgun, it’s going to take a new game to fix. If you want a Shotgun that both doesn’t allow animation skipping, as well as is able to fire whenever the user wants, even on an empty reload, a new reloading technique is needed, the same used in BF4.

When empty: Load one shell, pump gun (ammo adds), load the rest normally.

When loaded: Take longer to load the first round (matching load/pump), load the rest normally.

Having the first shell take longer than the rest also encourages smarter reloading.

Well damn, that’s one big wall of text, but it’s needed when I’m not talking straight to the people who know how to fix this stuff.

> 2533274815510651;1:
> I posted this on Reddit, and I’ll post it again here to get it as much visibility as possible.
>
> Many weapons in the game have their reload timers, the time it takes for the ammo to be added to your HUD and safely interrupt the animation, set incorrectly. While they should all be fixed, some are more significant problems than others, even to the point of being balance issues. From a non-gameplay perspective it’s also very cringe-inducing to see it happen, especially when the game encourages e-sports play, where gameplay trumps all and every advantage is used, including abusing these errors.
> This is something I first noticed in the Beta and unfortunately it wasn’t corrected for the final game. Here is a video showcasing every reload animation in the game slowed down by 50%. Please note that slowing them down is not at all required to see or experience these issues, it simply aides with clarity and looks pretty.
>
> Over the past year and a half or so I’ve been very active in Battlefield 4’s Community Test Environment program, and the reason this is relevant is I’ve spent considerable time working directly with DICE LA’s Lead Weapon Designer and Lead Weapon Animator on correcting the exact sort of issues we’re about to look at in this thread. If you’re a BF4 player then you’re familiar with the two massive gameplay patches released this year; the massive lists of weapon tweaks and corrects (aside from damage/recoil stats) were my handiwork. This will unfortunately always sound like boasting, but I hope most of you will understand I’m simply trying to establish I do know what I’m dealing with here.
>
> One final thing to address is how a couple of things are supposed to work, things which I’d consider intuitive but it’s good to put them here anyway. Ammo should add to a gun when said gun is ready to fire, or more specifically, when the final action needed by the user is performed. The other thing is that in Halo, guns with both a loaded and empty reload animation will always have the animations be the same length, because that’s not a gameplay element.
> The major issue with ammo adding too early is that with all the new movement abilities in H5, you’re almost guaranteed to be trying to use one of right after a reload. In some cases it’s so far off that double-tapping switch weapons is faster than waiting it out. Also keep in mind that correcting these only affects when you can interrupt an animation, not the actual reload length.
>
> Let’s get into the list.
>
>
>
>
>
> - Binary Rifle. Perfect. Ammo is added when new cartridge is put in place by Spartan, gun does the rest.
>
>
>
> - LightRifle. Perfect. Ammo is added when Spartan pushes top cover into place, gun does the rest.
>
>
>
> - Suppressor. Problem. Ammo is added when cartridge is loaded. Ammo should be added when top cover is pushed down, just like the LightRifle.
>
>
>
> - Scattershot. Perfect. Ammo adds with each cartridge. Flipping closed does not need to be accounted for given how it’s done.
>
>
>
> - Boltshot. Problem. Same issue and solution as the Suppressor.
>
>
>
> - Fuel Rod Gun. Problem. Oh my, is it ever. Ammo is added while the Spartan’s hand is still offscreen. Ammo should be added as Spartan pushes the magazine into place, but before the gun’s mini arms/teeth grab it.
>
>
>
> - Plasma Caster. Problem. Same problem as Fuel Rod Gun. Ammo should be added as Spartan finishes twisting cartridge into place.
>
>
>
> - Carbine. Perfect. Ammo is added as Spartan closes top cover.
>
>
>
> - Needler. Perfect (I guess?). It’s a Needler, it doesn’t really reload, but the ammo is added the moment the needles reappear, so I’d say that’s perfect.
>
>
>
> - SPNKr. Problem. Ammo is added when barrels are placed. Ammo should be added the moment the top cover is closed.
>
>
>
> - Rocket Launcher. Perfect. It’s as flawless as the Binary Rifle.
>
>
>
> - Hydra. Perfect. Ammo is added as the launcher grabs/“eats” the inserted missile.
>
>
>
> - Railgun. Problem. Well, we know why Whiplash is so absurdly powerful; ammo is added when the cartridge is inserted. Ammo should be added the moment the top cover latches closed.
>
>
>
> - Sniper Rifle. Perfect AND Problem. This is an animation problem. Loaded reload is flawless, which means the empty reload (which is the same ammo add time) should be flawless, but it isn’t. Animation for empty reload should have you swap magazines much faster, as in both Reach and H4, making both animations the same length. H5 simply added the charging animation after the normal mag swap. >.<
>
>
>
> - SAW. Problem.. Ammo adds when drum is attached. Ammo should be added when drum is locked into place.
>
>
>
> - Shotgun. Perfect AND Problem.. Ammo adds with shells perfectly, but the gun is pumped on non-empty reloads, which it shouldn’t be; Halo: CE is still the only Halo game to do this correctly. Also, like the Sniper Rifle the pump animation can therefore be completely skipped when empty, and the gun can be fired when empty before being pumped. See below for more on this.
>
>
>
> - DMR/BR/AR/SMG. Problem.. All four reload with the two step system of Place Mag/Slap Mag when loaded and Fully Insert Mag/Charge Weapon when empty. As was said, this is so the timers will match both animations, with the gun not properly loaded until the same time it’s cocked when empty. Except the ammo adds with the first step, not the second, defeating the purpose. Ammo should be added when the mag is slapped in (loaded) and charging handle is used (empty).
>
>
>
> - Magnum. Perfect. Should have the same Warzone variants as the other loadout weapons, but that’s another topic. :3
> Aside from the Sniper Rifle and Shotgun, every single one of these can be fixed by simply changing the timer value. For all the things in games that are complex, this is a piece of cake.
>
> The Sniper Rifle would need a new empty reload animation, or even just having the existing one sped up (either the whole thing or just the mag swap) to match the ammo timer. I know animation is far more work than the timers so I won’t hold my breath for this one.
>
> As for the Shotgun, it’s going to take a new game to fix. If you want a Shotgun that both doesn’t allow animation skipping, as well as is able to fire whenever the user wants, even on an empty reload, a new reloading technique is needed, the same used in BF4.
>
> When empty: Load one shell, pump gun (ammo adds), load the rest normally.
>
> When loaded: Take longer to load the first round (matching load/pump), load the rest normally.
>
> Having the first shell take longer than the rest also encourages smarter reloading.
>
> Well damn, that’s one big wall of text, but it’s needed when I’m not talking straight to the people who know how to fix this stuff.

Dude we’re not gonna read all that over something as simple as reload animations. Care to add a tldr?

> 2533274873772972;2:
> > 2533274815510651;1:
> > snip
>
>
> Dude we’re not gonna read all that over something as simple as reload animations. Care to add a tldr?

Man, Reddit made the post look much smaller than this, the formatting doesn’t work so well here.

TL;DR: Watch the linked video and read the bullet points.

Could you remove the massive quote from your post? That would help too. :wink:

…This is a video game. Who really cares about this?

Interesting! I didn’t know this was a problem, but yeah, the moment the gun can be fired needs to be the exact moment the ammo appears.

tbh all reload animations have not been real world accurate

in fact i am sure they were unintentionally designed that way and players figured out how to cancel reload animation or YY out of it

i think its a Halo Trademark to cancel reload animation to get back in the action quicker

> 2533274859413227;4:
> …This is a video game. Who really cares about this?

People who play competitively?

Having it so that the ammo counter shows up at the exact moment that the gun is ready to fire is important so you can know when it’s safe to cancel the reload animation with another action.

Now that I think of it a lot of times when I first started playing h5 I would reload and then thrust or something only to realize I still had no bullets in my gun and this is probably why.

> 2533275010968401;6:
> tbh all reload animations have not been real world accurate
>
> in fact i am sure they were unintentionally designed that way and players figured out how to cancel reload animation or YY out of it
>
> i think its a Halo Trademark to cancel reload animation to get back in the action quicker

Its definitely not a Halo trademark. Its been in call of duty since the beginning. In Halo it seems almost pointless to do it as it barely saves any time, in call of duty it saves a pretty significant amount of time.

> 2533274866682248;7:
> > 2533274859413227;4:
> > …This is a video game. Who really cares about this?
>
>
> People who play competitively?
>
> Having it so that the ammo counter shows up at the exact moment that the gun is ready to fire is important so you can know when it’s safe to cancel the reload animation with another action.
>
> Now that I think of it a lot of times when I first started playing h5 I would reload and then thrust or something only to realize I still had no bullets in my gun and this is probably why.

Close. The Ammo does save the exact moment it shows up in your HUD, but the problem is that that moment sometimes doesn’t line up with what the gun model is doing on your screen/the audio you hear, which is extremely counter-intuitive.

> 2533274873772972;8:
> > 2533275010968401;6:
> > tbh all reload animations have not been real world accurate
> >
> > in fact i am sure they were unintentionally designed that way and players figured out how to cancel reload animation or YY out of it
> >
> > i think its a Halo Trademark to cancel reload animation to get back in the action quicker
>
>
> Its definitely not a Halo trademark. Its been in call of duty since the beginning. In Halo it seems almost pointless to do it as it barely saves any time, in call of duty it saves a pretty significant amount of time.

The halo ce pistol and sniper would like to have a word with you.

why are you complaining about RELOAD ANIMATIONS AND WHEN THE AMMO IS ADDED. Wtf!!!. People on here complain about EVERYTHING why the hell is this a thing it us one of the stupidest things on here people complain about

> 2533274813024089;10:
> > 2533274873772972;8:
> > > 2533275010968401;6:
> > > tbh all reload animations have not been real world accurate
> > >
> > > in fact i am sure they were unintentionally designed that way and players figured out how to cancel reload animation or YY out of it
> > >
> > > i think its a Halo Trademark to cancel reload animation to get back in the action quicker
> >
> >
> > Its definitely not a Halo trademark. Its been in call of duty since the beginning. In Halo it seems almost pointless to do it as it barely saves any time, in call of duty it saves a pretty significant amount of time.
>
>
> The halo ce pistol and sniper would like to have a word with you.

Haha, I was too young to notice any quick reloads back in the CE era. But I’m referring to Halo 5 when I say it makes very little difference.

> 2533274884116647;11:
> why are you complaining about RELOAD ANIMATIONS AND WHEN THE AMMO IS ADDED. Wtf!!!. People on here complain about EVERYTHING why the hell is this a thing it us one of the stupidest things on here people complain about

Because players can take advantage of quicker reloads vs. actual animations and have an advantage in a firefight where the other person doesn’t know the difference. On the other hand, most competitive players are probably used to the animations so it wouldn’t make much difference. But this is an issue that has bugged me