How to fly helicopters well (PC)

Avatar image for zidd
zidd

1940

Forum Posts

2905

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 24

#1  Edited By zidd

I tried making this a guide but the guide editor was not working at all

General

Try your best to keep the helicopter straight and level. Turn using the A and D keys instead of moving the mouse right/left as that makes the helicopter go sideways (very bad). Tilt the helicopter forward by moving the mouse up only slightly and move the mouse slightly back to slow down/stop. Slight mouse movements enable you to maintain control over the helicopter as you fly it around. Tiling the helicopter too far in any one direction will cause it to stall and fall out of the sky. The key to being a great helicopter crew is good solid TEAMWORK. If you get locked on you can press X after the long beep (means the missile is launched) to drop IR flares if you have them unlocked to thwart the incoming threat. Don't be afraid to retreat to your base to have your helicopter repair itself.

Taking Off

When taking off just press and hold W and gently move the mouse forward to get off the ground. Do not move the mouse backward, you are flying a helicopter not a plane.

Landing

When landing hold S and gently move the mouse backward a bit to stop your forward momentum then slow down with S until you reach the ground. The key here is to reach the ground slowly and gently so you can capture the point, evacuate the helicopter or repair it instead of crashing into the ground.

Intermediate tips

Avoid target locks by flying lower and behind trees and rocks to break the locks on stingers and other SAMs. Be aware that your helicopter is pretty long and your tail rotor can get caught in the trees pretty easily so be careful. After a while you will unlock heat seekers for your helicopters. Switch to them by pressing the 2 key and you will be able to lock onto airborne targets (even jets!) and take them out. When you are locked on fire ONE missile and see if the enemy pops their flares then fire the other one and disable the enemy aircraft.

When things don't go as planned

Play as an engineer and learn how to land your bird under duress. Bailing out of your helicopter at the first sign of trouble doesn't really help you or your team out that much. Your helicopter is disabled and loses maneuverability when it dips below 50%. It's still entirely possible to land and fix a damaged helicopter. This allows you to get back into the fight much faster then waiting for a new one to spawn, plus you'll feel like a badass when you finally pull it off.

Play your role

You're the pilot, be the pilot. When you land your chopper if you need repairs and no one in your chopper or a nearby team or squadmate can repair you, be prepared to do so. However, unless you landed outside the capture zone of a flag (and you shouldn't have btw) get back in the pilot seat. when the flag is taken let your passengers (who want to) get back in the chopper and take off. Always be moving.

Attack Helicopters

AH-1Z Viper (US)
AH-1Z Viper (US)

If you are in an attack helicopter make sure you have a gunner in the second seat before you take off because they will be doing the vast majority of your shooting. Spot targets for your gunner and your team by pressing the Q key and you will get bonus points. Your gunner should also be spotting targets so that you know where to fly and where to point the nose of the helicopter. The rockets are somewhat useful but they aren't guided and you should be busy trying not to crash the helicopter to use them anyway. If your gunner is shooting at a tank with the machine gun remind them to switch to guided or TV missiles(If unlocked) by pressing the 2 key as those are a lot more effective against armor and vehicles but flying TV missiles well takes a lot of practice.

Intermediate tips

MI-28 HAVOC (RU)
MI-28 HAVOC (RU)

If your gunner is having a hard time getting their targets on the first pass move the mouse forward and slightly to one side and hold down either A or D depending on which way you moved the mouse (same direction so moving left you would hold down A) and swing the chopper back around move the mouse backwards and straighten the helicopter. This maneuver takes a bit of practice but its very useful. Don't keep the nose down for too long as you will stall, lose altitude and crash.

Being a good gunner

Shoot what your pilot spots if they are spotting targets, if they aren't you should remind them to spot your targets as they have a lot wider field of view than you do. Use your guided or TV missiles (if unlocked) to take out armor. Use the right mouse button to switch imaging or zoom modes on your turret for a better view if either is unlocked.

Scout Helicopters

AH-6J Little Bird (US)
AH-6J Little Bird (US)

Scout helicopters are different from attack helicopters in that they can hold more people and are a bit weaker but are still very useful for your team. Having an engineer on your crew is a great idea since they can fire rockets at enemy armor and repair the helicopter when things go south as long as they are in seat 3 or 4. Your helicopter should have at least 3 people in it before leaving the aircraft carrier but if you have only two thats fine too as you can pick up squad members and teammates along the way. Never take off alone in a scout helicopter as fully loaded scout helicopters capture flags a lot faster.

Being a good passenger

If you are an engineer you should press F2 or F3 to change to the second or third seat so you can repair the helicopter using your repair tool. Make sure you have a non homing rocket launcher(RPG-7 or SMAW) or a rocket launcher that locks on to ground targets(Javelin) or you are going to have a short trip and very angry squadmates.

Expert Maneuvers

Z-11W (RU)
Z-11W (RU)

If you have an engineer aboard your helicopter they can use their rocket launcher to take out enemy tanks and other vehicles. Fly in nice and close and hover (Tap W) and make sure you stay nice and still so that your passenger can take the tank out. This leaves you EXTREMELY vulnerable so only attempt this if your target is preoccupied.

Conquest Tips

When you are playing conquest mode you should try piling into a scout helicopter with your squad/teammates. You can effectively capture flags by either landing or circling the flag pretty close to the ground. Keep the helicopter level and let your passengers take care of enemies. If you see anyone incoming spot them for your passengers and turn the helicopter(using A and D) so the sides are pointed towards the threat. Try not to move the mouse too much because it can make it difficult for your passengers to aim.

Heavy (Transport) Helicopters

UH-1Y VENOM (US)
UH-1Y VENOM (US)

This chopper has more momentum than the attack or scout helicopter, so remember to account for that in turning radius and when dropping altitude as your bird will want to drop farther than you might want it to. As the pilot, you have no weapons but flares, so be mindful of this. It works great to have a full chopper hover or land over a capture point but sometimes you have to clear out the enemy first. You don't want to go in pointing yourself straight at the bad dudes, you want to present firing angles for your gunners, which often means circling a point killing dudes before landing on a point, or going between two sets of bad dudes if your gunners will have the sight lines. Also, because this chopper is bigger, stay inside when flying it. Nothing is worse than getting in a full transport chopper and having the pilot bail out at the first sense of danger. That might give you some suicides or deaths if you lose control or get hit by a tank shell (by far the worst enemy to the transport chopper) but usually your dudes in the chopper can get out, and only you will die. this is in contrast to you getting out surviving and killing your team back in the chopper. this applies to the other choppers as well, but its worst in the transport chopper.

Tanks

The transport chopper is bigger and slower so tanks are a problem. You'll want to fly low because it helps with radar guided missiles but if you get too low and close to a tank you'll become an easy target for the main cannon. Fortunately, tank cannons don't blow up your chopper but they will flip your chopper into a stall, and you will crash immediately. Just be aware of enemy armor and their range and place relative to you. Use buildings as cover and tactically raise your altitude when needed.

intermediate Tips

KA-60 KASATKA (RU)
KA-60 KASATKA (RU)

For a while, do not touch the strafing controls. Because, as previously stated, you will stall and die. However, once you get a better handle on your throttle ("elevator" in helo terms (?)) you can also begin to get a handle on strategic strafing. This serves two purposes. First, when you always rudder turn, there's some forward drift which means you need to leave space on the outside of your turn. This means doing things like cutting between large buildings or towers as cover is pretty hard to do at speed because you might get your tail rotor caught on the outside objects. if however, you use a little bit of strafing you can cut down your turning radius and make much smaller turns, which gives you more cover, which is good. For example, on a left turn, if you bank left going into the turn (you have to keep up your throttle so you don't lose altitude) a little as you rudder left, You slow down your forward momentum, transferring it more to the left (then forward once you've ruddered to the left and leveled out again) motion. Secondly, the strafing/banking motion is great for cutting altitude. Sometimes you might find yourself a little higher than you should be, either because you had to get away and the only 'away' was up or because you just weren't paying attention. Then all of the sudden, boom, there's a lock and a helo in your face or a guy on the ground who has a great angle on you. Sure, you can tip forward, losing your momentum but draining altitude, or you can bank hard (harder than for the turn maneuver above) enough that your rotors stop providing lift and you drop like a rock. If you level out almost immediately you'll take a huge altitude plunge but still move forward. This is great because you'll likely either lose your lock or extend the time it takes for the dude to get a full lock. Combine this with a sudden turn like I described above, or a sudden lift again, then sudden drop and you might get away without firing a flare. This also extends the usefulness of your flares because you force your attacker to take less shots at you.

Console / Controller Usage

While this guide was collaborated with the PC in mind there is still much to be learned from this guide. Use this conversion table to help you make sense of the tips above.

FunctionPC ButtonXbox 360 ButtonPS3 Button
Weapon Switch2-5YTriangle
Throttle UpWRTR2
Throttle DownSLTL2
Gadget (Flares)XRBR1
Switch SeatsF2-F6AX
SpotQBackSelect
PitchMouse Up/DownRS Up/DownRS Up/Down
Yaw left/rightA/DLSLS
RollMouse Left/RightRSRS

Glossary

Armor: Tanks / Armored Personnel Carriers / Anything heavier than a humvee.

IR Flares: Guided missile countermeasures.

Lock: Happens when a guided missile targets your aircraft. Rapid short beeping means someone is attempting to target you either from the air or on the ground do not launch your IR flares. A single long tone indicates the lock is successful and you should now launch your countermeasures.

Nose: The front of the aircraft.

Pitch: The forward/backward tilt of your aircraft.

Roll: The left/right tilt of your aircraft.

Rotor: The part of a helicopter that spins. They are horizontal on the top of the aircraft to generate lift and vertically on the tail for stability.

Stall: a reduction in lift causing your helicopter to fall out of the sky like a rock.

Tail: The rear of the aircraft.

Yaw: The left/right rotation of the aircraft.

Contributors

@AhmadMetallic, @max_mischi3f,@mfpantst

Avatar image for seppli
Seppli

11232

Forum Posts

9

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 7

User Lists: 0

#2  Edited By Seppli

You should be able to just take-off right away. People can spawn into choppers from spawn menu. There's just too many bad pilots right now scaring away the general populus from doing so.

Avatar image for mfpantst
mfpantst

2660

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 4

User Lists: 0

#3  Edited By mfpantst
@Zidd: approved.
Avatar image for zidd
zidd

1940

Forum Posts

2905

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 24

#4  Edited By zidd

@Seppli: Maybe its just my BF2 habits but I still think its sound advice because you don't exactly know when you are going to be getting into the shit. People running around on the flight deck don't get to spawn into your aircraft either though.

Avatar image for gre
Gre

167

Forum Posts

356

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 1

User Lists: 4

#5  Edited By Gre

Would I be able to break out the old flight stick and throttle I used to fly helicopters in Janes AH-64 Longbow back in the late '90's and use that in Battlefield 3? Or are the controls not realistic enough for experience with a helicopter sim to transfer over?

Avatar image for briangodsoe
briangodsoe

498

Forum Posts

12

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 4

#6  Edited By briangodsoe
@Seppli said:

You should be able to just take-off right away. People can spawn into choppers from spawn menu. There's just too many bad pilots right now scaring away the general populus from doing so.

After last night, I've made it a rule not to get in another chopper that somebody who isn't one of my friends is piloting for a month or so. I spawned in the gunner of one that took off, flipped over backwords, and slammed into a tree behind us.
Avatar image for zidd
zidd

1940

Forum Posts

2905

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 24

#7  Edited By zidd

@Gre: Yeah you should be able to but I think the joystick support is a bit iffy at the moment.

Avatar image for s7evn
s7evn

1067

Forum Posts

332

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 5

#8  Edited By s7evn

I find it helpful to turn the mouse sensitivity up all the away for helicopter control. I'm not sure if that's an option in this game, but I think it makes the choppers a little more manageable.

Avatar image for zidd
zidd

1940

Forum Posts

2905

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 24

#9  Edited By zidd

@s7evn: that turns your mouse sensitivity for everything up though. there is no seperate setting like in bf2

Avatar image for twisted_scot
Twisted_Scot

1213

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 1

User Lists: 1

#10  Edited By Twisted_Scot

It sucks that there no training for Helicopters in BF3. I have the 360 version and I can only choose from 4 (really only 2) control options, both of which I find awkward to use. I would like to get back into using Helicopter as I used them a lot in BF2 but don't want to screw it up for others. The major lesson about using helicopters is fly in the opposite direction of the ground.

Avatar image for zidd
zidd

1940

Forum Posts

2905

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 24

#11  Edited By zidd

I don't know too much about how the helicopters control in the console versions but the concepts in the guide should still help you out.

Avatar image for spencertucksen
SpencerTucksen

444

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 1

User Lists: 0

#12  Edited By SpencerTucksen

I was beast mode with choppers in BC2. I'm not sure what the problem is, but I just can not do it this time around. Seeing me in a jet is horrific. Lol

Avatar image for renmckormack
renmckormack

1089

Forum Posts

5

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 1

#13  Edited By renmckormack

@Zidd: I think you forgot.

ALWAYS REMEMBER

Wait at helicopter spawn the whole time until chopper re spawns. Shoot any teammate that tries to get in before your OR alliteratively spam the chat with "so and so" is a (Racial or Sexual Slur). Do this for the whole match, this CRITICAL. Lastly, as soon as you get in the helicopter, yank back all the way on the mouse until you do a back flip stall the engine and crash into the helipad in 5 seconds. I would prefer you crash into a tree or building if they are available. Repeat this process.

If i think of anything else I will tell you.

Avatar image for zidd
zidd

1940

Forum Posts

2905

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 24

#14  Edited By zidd

@RenMcKormack: It wouldn't be battlefield if people didn't do that all the time. Although I've been seeing less of it in BF3.

Avatar image for ahmadmetallic
AhmadMetallic

19300

Forum Posts

-1

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 1

User Lists: 11

#15  Edited By AhmadMetallic
@Zidd:  Good thread on how to operate, but you forgot a very essential thing: Survival. 
 
Never gain big altitude! The higher up you go, the slower you are and the easier it is for rockets to lunge at you and for stingers to lock on you.  Always stay very close to the ground, which allows you to have full control over the helicopter and makes you much faster and more agile. 
Always fly between trees or rocks or buildings, which will break stinger/jet locks on you.
Avatar image for renmckormack
renmckormack

1089

Forum Posts

5

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 1

#16  Edited By renmckormack

Yea they have been making the planes and choppers etc steadily easier (more manageable) since 1942. I am always glad to have a skilled pilot on my team.

Anyone wish for DLC with wildass mechs and stuff like 2142. Im just sayin/

Good list Zidd

Avatar image for zidd
zidd

1940

Forum Posts

2905

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 24

#17  Edited By zidd

@AhmadMetallic: The guide is a work in progress but is mainly meant for beginners so I wouldn't advise doing that because its easy to get your rotors tangled in that stuff and cause your engine RPMs to go down and make the helicopter unstable. I will continue updating it as I think of more stuff and people post their own tips.

Edit: Updated the OP with some more tips.

Avatar image for withateethuh
withateethuh

766

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 1

#18  Edited By withateethuh

After about two hours of fly time, I've pretty much mastered movement with the helicopter with a controller. Once you get used to the general momentum of movement, they are very maneuverable, far more than BC2.

I do wish the scout choppers were faster. I feel like a sitting duck inching across the sky in those things. But man do those gatling guns fuck up infantry.

Avatar image for ahmadmetallic
AhmadMetallic

19300

Forum Posts

-1

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 1

User Lists: 11

#19  Edited By AhmadMetallic
@Zidd:  Good point, flying low is not easy
Avatar image for zidd
zidd

1940

Forum Posts

2905

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 24

#20  Edited By zidd

@withateethuh: A good team in a scout chopper can rule an area of the larger maps with an iron fist if everyone is working together.

Avatar image for zidd
zidd

1940

Forum Posts

2905

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 24

#21  Edited By zidd

More Tips posted.

Avatar image for acerock
Acerock

24

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 3

User Lists: 0

#22  Edited By Acerock

@Zidd: wellplayed sir. i'll stick to tanks. ;)

Avatar image for max_mischi3f
max_mischi3f

66

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

#23  Edited By max_mischi3f

Play as an engineer and learn how to land your bird under duress. A helicopter is disabled and loses maneuverability when it dips below 50% hp. It's still entirely possible to land and fix a damaged helicopter rather then ditching, and allows you to get back into the fight much faster then waiting for a new one to spawn. Plus, you'll feel like a badass when you finally pull it off instead of pancaking.

Avatar image for subyman
subyman

729

Forum Posts

2719

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 2

User Lists: 0

#24  Edited By subyman

I just spent about 30-45 mins with a buddy practicing on the coop mission. That's the real way to do it. The controls are crazy at first, but they become very natural after a numerous attempts. I'd say the number one thing that most people do is try to turn by using the mouse too much. A and D is where its at.

Avatar image for mirado
Mirado

2557

Forum Posts

37

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

#25  Edited By Mirado

Mobile AA is your friend. He doesn't want to hurt you, he just wants to give you a hug, With bullets. Sometimes he'll try to say "Hello!" from a distance, and your copter will interpret that as a missile lock on. Don't hit your flares, as that's considered very rude. It's best if you fly straight towards him, without making sudden movements. He startles easily. If you get blown out of the sky, just chalk it up to a little over-excitement, and give it another go.

....What? I could use a few more kills hugs kills.

Avatar image for zidd
zidd

1940

Forum Posts

2905

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 24

#26  Edited By zidd

@subyman said:

I just spent about 30-45 mins with a buddy practicing on the coop mission. That's the real way to do it. The controls are crazy at first, but they become very natural after a numerous attempts. I'd say the number one thing that most people do is try to turn by using the mouse too much. A and D is where its at.

I've also seen people pull back on the mouse like its a jet and that will just allow the helicopter to topple over and kill everyone inside. The key is to keep it straight like it says in the first post. and maybe someday you get enough skill to break physics and allow things like this to happen.

Avatar image for gunslingernz
gunslingerNZ

2009

Forum Posts

300

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 5

#27  Edited By gunslingerNZ

Personally I find it much easier to use the keyboard controls for flight. Just switch your mouse hand over to the arrow keys and away you go.

Avatar image for xeiphyer
Xeiphyer

5965

Forum Posts

1193

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 8

#28  Edited By Xeiphyer

Anyone having trouble adjusting to how the air vehicles control in BF3 might want to try switching to Legacy controls in the options. I had a much easier time with it.

Avatar image for vonflampanker
vonFlampanker

352

Forum Posts

10

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 4

#29  Edited By vonFlampanker

I've never been able to handle the helis in any BF game previous to this one. The keyboard-only or mouse-keyboard setup were recipes for disaster for me and my squad. I tried BF3's heli with a 360 controller and could keep the thing in the air well enough, but I'll be needing some practice.

Any tips particular to the 360 controller on the PC version of BF3?

Avatar image for durog
durog

260

Forum Posts

173

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 1

User Lists: 5

#30  Edited By durog

@vonFlampanker: If you find that the default controls for 360 controller aren't working for you, go into options and switch up the controls to your liking.

Avatar image for franstone
Franstone

1534

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

#31  Edited By Franstone

Also, don't use a mouse, at all...

Copy and past this guide into word, find all references to mouse, delete, replace with joystick.

; )

Avatar image for mrklorox
MrKlorox

11211

Forum Posts

1071

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

#32  Edited By MrKlorox

If you're a medic, you can throw a medkit inside the helicopter and it stays there to heal any engineers repairing the bird from the inside. Dropping ammo inside isn't as helpful.

Avatar image for om1kron
137

487

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 1

#33  Edited By 137

@AhmadMetallic said:

@Zidd: Good point, flying low is not easy

Nothing like escaping near death or making an awesome strafing run only to have a indestructable light pole pop up in front of you. or to lag zag into a tree you were floating in front of. =/

Avatar image for mfpantst
mfpantst

2660

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 4

User Lists: 0

#34  Edited By mfpantst
@Zidd: Ok so there's a third type of helo.  I'm assuming you didn't cover it because either a) you don't use it much or b) you consider it a form of the scout chopper.  Also (and unfortunately) I have been very confused about the unlocks as pilot you get for this chopper (other than flares).  That is the gunner/transport chopper.  It's available on only two maps, operation firestorm and the canals maps (I think, and on the canal map only as the US team).  This dude holds 5 total people (I think) and is the heaviest (read slowest) of the choppers.  However, on the maps it's available its extremely useful if used right.  Especially on operation firestorm.  So I wanted to provide some tips on the heavy chopper:
 
It's a heavy chopper.  This chopper has more momentum than the attack or scout helo, so remember to account for that in turning radius and when dropping altitude as your bird will want to drop farther than you might want it to.  As the pilot, you have no weapons but flares, so be mindful of this.  It works great to have a full chopper hover or land over a capture point but sometimes you have to clear out the enemy first.  You don't want to go in pointing yourself straight at the bad dudes, you want to present firing angles for your gunners, which often means circling a point killing dudes before landing on a point, or going between two sets of bad dudes if your gunners will have the sight lines.  Also, because this chopper is bigger, stay in the fucking bird when flying it.  Nothing is worse than getting in a full transport chopper and having the pilot bail out at the first sense of danger.  That might give you some suicides or deaths if you lose control or get hit by a tank shell (by far the worst enemy to the transport chopper) but usually your dudes in the chopper can get out, and only you will die.  this is in contrast to you getting out surviving and killing your team back in the chopper.  this applies to the other choppers as well, but I've seen it worst in the transport chopper.
 
A note on tanks: I've found because the transport chopper is bigger and slower, tanks are a problem.  You want to fly low because it helps with radar guided missiles but if you get too low and close to a tank you become easy pickings for the main cannon.  unfortunately, tank cannons don't blow up your chopper but they will flip your chopper into a stall, and you will crash immediately.  Just be aware of enemy armor and their range and their place relative to you.  Use buildings as cover and tactically raise your altitude when needed.
 
Finally, I wanted to provide some later intermediate advice on flying the copper.  For a while, do not touch the strafing controls.  Because, as previously stated, you will stall and die.  However, once you get a better handle on your throttle ("elevator" in helo terms (?)) you can also begin to get a handle on strategic strafing.  This serves two purposes.  First, when you always rudder turn, there's some forward drift which means you need to leave space on the outside of your turn.  This means doing things like cutting between large buildings or towers as cover is pretty hard to do at speed because you might get your tail rotor caught on the outside objects.  if however, you use a little bit of strafing you can cut down your turning radius and make much smaller turns, which gives you more cover, which is good.  For example, on a left turn, if you bank left going into the turn (you have to keep up your throttle so you don't lose alt) a little as you rudder left, You slow down your forward momentum, transferring it more to leftward (then forward once you've ruddered to the left and leveled out again) motion.  
Secondly, the strafing/banking motion is great for cutting altitude.  Sometimes you might find yourself a little higher than you should be, either because you had to get away and the only 'away' was up or because you just weren't paying attention.  Then all of the sudden, boom, there's a lock and a helo in your face or a guy on the ground who has a great angle on you.  Sure, you can tip forward, losing your momentum but draining altitude, or you can bank hard (harder than for the turn maneuver above) enough that your rotors stop providing lift and you drop like a rock.  If you level out almost immediately you'll take a huge altitude plunge but still move forward.  This is great because you'll likely either lose your lock or extend the time it takes for the dude to get a full lock.  Combine this with a sudden turn like I described above, or a sudden lift again, then sudden drop and you might get away without firing a flare.  This also extends the usefulness of your flares because you force your attacker to take less shots at you.
 
 Second finally, play your role.  if you're the pilot, be the pilot.  When you land your chopper if you need repairs and noone in your chopper or nearby can repair you, be prepared to do so.  However, unless you landed outside the capture zone of a point (and you shouldn't have btw) get back in the pilot seat.  when the point is taken let your guys (who want to) get back in the chopper and take off.  Always be moving.
Avatar image for zidd
zidd

1940

Forum Posts

2905

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 24

#35  Edited By zidd

@vonFlampanker: Ill turn on my 360 controller next time I fly and I'll report back with some more tips for those running the 360 version or using an Xbox controller.

@mfpantst: I had originally put them under scout helicopters since most of the tips work both ways. Thanks to your post though I'll add it as a separate section.

Avatar image for mfpantst
mfpantst

2660

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 4

User Lists: 0

#36  Edited By mfpantst
@Zidd: Sweet- good move.  I used to think of the scout and transport/gunner choppers as the same, but I've been thinking them more and more different.  I've begun to compare them to cars- the scout chopper is the small city car of the bunch.  the attack chopper is the ferrari, and the transport/gunner choppers are like the big ford mustang.  Heavy, but fast, and not the most maneuverable.  Also I use an xbox controller for vehicle control in BF3.  I use the onza thingy- and it's  awesome because the bottom triggers are longer, which lets you easily feel the 'dance' between acecleration and deceleration as  you use your fingers.
Avatar image for zidd
zidd

1940

Forum Posts

2905

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 24

#37  Edited By zidd

Added Images, helicopter names and factions for each type of helicopter.

Avatar image for mfpantst
mfpantst

2660

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 4

User Lists: 0

#38  Edited By mfpantst
@Zidd: Also- and this is more for discussion rather than straight adding: i've been thinking about the helo pilot's role.  As in, I think that for about the first 5-10 minutes of a match, helo pilots are really useful.  As teams are still in flux with which point each team decidedly holds, helicopters provide good transport and firepower to manipulate that development.  However, once teams get into set positions I tend to see that the benefit of being a helo pilot drops off a bit- and being a ground soldier tends to benefit the team more at that point.  Sometimes, the map balance breaks and when things get back into flux though, helicopters become more useful.  I don't know if that's just me or things do/don't work that way, but I'm open to thoughts, and it might be a useful topic to discuss.
Avatar image for zidd
zidd

1940

Forum Posts

2905

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 24

#39  Edited By zidd

@mfpantst: The Later in the map loading up a scout or transport helicopter with a crew and flanking a contested flag or troublesome tank can help the team. You can also run anti-helicopter/armor offense and just hunt down the enemy's vehicles so they are without them long enough so your team can move in and capture the flag.

Avatar image for tekmojo
tekmojo

2365

Forum Posts

104

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 1

User Lists: 3

#40  Edited By tekmojo

Nice post, although the main part of flying is obviously flying, so make sure you find a low populated server and try and practice landing and moving through tight areas to gain confidence. Just got to play around with it and develop your own style.

Avatar image for mikemcn
mikemcn

8642

Forum Posts

4863

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 2

User Lists: 8

#41  Edited By mikemcn

Play as the attack helicopter gunner until you unlock some stuff for it, that way it'll be even easier when you do jump into the pilots seat

Avatar image for zidd
zidd

1940

Forum Posts

2905

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 24

#42  Edited By zidd

The guide has been updated with a bit more information and clarifications about unlocks.

Avatar image for contro
Contro

2346

Forum Posts

-1

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

#43  Edited By Contro

Good advice can be seen in this thread.

Avatar image for zidd
zidd

1940

Forum Posts

2905

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 24

#44  Edited By zidd

Added Console Controls section. If a moderator could take the "(PC)" off of the thread title I'd appreciate that.

This edit will also create new pages on Giant Bomb for:

Beware, you are proposing to add brand new pages to the wiki along with your edits. Make sure this is what you intended. This will likely increase the time it takes for your changes to go live.

Comment and Save

Until you earn 1000 points all your submissions need to be vetted by other Giant Bomb users. This process takes no more than a few hours and we'll send you an email once approved.