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Do such sports and games affect reality?

Posted: Sun Dec 02, 2012 2:24 pm
by Ryan
I was thinking about this after watching a tonne of videos. Do sports and games affect reality in terms of realism and tactics? For instance if a certain entry is conducted in paintball, a game or airsoft could that be used as some amount of reference to a probable realistic fight for law enforcement or military units? Such goes for fighting styles, systems and techniques and it's quite an interest if so. That kind of FOF feedback is really beneficial.

For instance. Can running and gunning work? Does this kind of FOF prepare you for reality when it comes to shock, fear and differentiating useful tactics? Can it really differentiate theory from reality or is reality just something that unique you can't really compare?

Re: Do such sports and games affect reality?

Posted: Mon Dec 03, 2012 10:41 am
by jimothy_183
The modern grips for handguns was invented by Brian Enos, along with his good friend Rob Leatham. Both are competion shooters. The USMC have created a competition shooting team just so they could learn new things for use in combat.

In short, yes you can certainly discover new and useful things in sports and games.

Of course one also has to differenciate between what is good and what is bad for combat. For example I saw a YT vid of a competition where the guy ran from one door way to another beside him while pointing his pistol at the wall the whole time, clearly a range safety issue (not a 360 range). My point being that one should remember to not develop training scars (i.e: bad habits) from these things.

Re: Do such sports and games affect reality?

Posted: Mon Dec 03, 2012 1:13 pm
by Ryan
You know, I didn't even think of that. But exactly, good call Jimothy. Look at USAMU - The Army Marksmanship Unit - and what they teach which in turn can be applied in combat and lead to better conditioning for shooting. Some of which go on to help in combat, to help with daily soldiering tasks. For example those mental picture techniques and imaging they teach such as indexing (as discussed by Mike in the scanning topic; Mike correct me if I'm wrong but didn't AMU originate this technique and pass it down the SOF chain? I know they have done so with a few techniques.) and how it can help increase visual awareness and perception.

At the same time the shooting teams can be thrown into research patterns around anything combat-related. They also develop and modify such through research. Combining their skill sets they can theorize, practice and then implement a range drill or range-born technique and develop it to the criteria of being combat ready or combat capable. Operational tactics are different from just being tactical - operational is can it work? Test it against human potential and build up that confidence with it. They have the funding and capability to do so and pass such learnt examinations down the line to other units. It's really a great way to develop better shooters, as was the "killology" theory that was heavily development from Vietnam on up. Now we get to the point where killing isn't a "problem" for the military. That's just one more progressive bridge build to the path of a better overall army.

And on bad habits; conditioning around a sense of reality is important otherwise you're substituting what is taught for what will be reality, which as known is not always a fact. To examine the grey and be apart of it can be a life safer. For example if you substitute the do this, do not do that dogmatic routine then when your scenario training breaks down then you have to rely on something deeper. The problem with conventional training is the blocks do not allow for deeper - it's general conditioning for general firefights based off the averages, which works - but not always. Training blocks are taught. And that training can block further individual productiveness by stepping outside their known limits of militaristic learning. What another country or unit may do may be more combat effective for example. I like to analyze those backgrounds and see what lead to the change or what encompasses the success ratio.

To really dig deep you have to fight a brain and learn to counteract it. This is exactly why I brought up airsoft, paintball and gaming - each of which you could face another brain, and if you look at backgrounds you could be talking ex or current military, law enforcement or somebody who hasn't got a clue about anything tactic and/or shooting related. That difference can really add up to an all around understanding of some basic human footprints/signatures of their human potential and how they operate and therefore how you should operate. For example most entries seen in airsoft videos have multiple casualties. Entries therefore become less of a priority to airsofters. You have to have some amount of balance, even if you're fixated inherently on a specific; you still have to have the ability to think about options and decisions.

I can play a game for an hour, spar in a boxing ring for twenty minutes and learn countless lessons. What to look out for, how to react, how to be unpredictable. What not to do. What is a good suggestion of which to do. The power of suggestion really comes into play. If someone suggested to you that judging by the risk you'd be killed on entry then that plays home and you modify around not entering for example.

Training scars therefore can be pretty complex. I think there's no one true answer to anything but there are some training scars taught that aren't realized to be scars. I mean imagine teaching whole fireteams to burst through a door of a hot room with an insurgent AK in hand staring at it - there's better ways. Sometimes it's developing tactical suicide which gets people out alive, other times that tactical development just fixates and cements them in this cult-like trance of believing in something that may get them killed. Self-realization to snap out of dogma is a big step, but then staying in a straight and narrow path as to not develop any further or potential training scars as stated would be very complex. Then - are other people centralized around the same self-reality? Because if not then what you determine errors they may conduct and that may get you killed. And as known, self-born realities can tip either way. Experience is one self-born reality that can either lead you to believe you're doing the right thing when infact you may be doing the wrong. Don't trust experience always, because unique situations occur, human error happens. That's the problem with lateral thinking in this sense. If you have a unit of lateral thinkers who are proactive A-types then no problem, but it won't work with the conventional dads army.

They're slowly getting there, I mean the military is slowly becoming more self-sufficient whilst orientating around a team level. It's slowly becoming an individual thought pattern level. I suppose that's preparing for future battles, such as ones that the British Army at least estimate to happen most often for them in urban theaters. Exactly where individual matters.

Re: Do such sports and games affect reality?

Posted: Sun Jan 20, 2013 5:13 am
by Ryan
I was thinking about this and it applied to gaming versus range shooting. I can't remember the exact study but I know they tested a bunch of gamers new to shooting in terms of not only weapon handling but the overall use of the weapon compared with non-gamer new time shooters. But it turns out the gamers held the weapon almost properly with a few touch-ups in comparison with non-gamers who didn't have a clue how to hold it. Gamers had a little bit more confidence, although a few misconceptions (mainly with ballistics). And gamers did better at shooting. I'll search for the study when I have time...

Re: Do such sports and games affect reality?

Posted: Mon Jan 21, 2013 9:20 am
by jimothy_183
Ryan wrote:I was thinking about this and it applied to gaming versus range shooting. I can't remember the exact study but I know they tested a bunch of gamers new to shooting in terms of not only weapon handling but the overall use of the weapon compared with non-gamer new time shooters. But it turns out the gamers held the weapon almost properly with a few touch-ups in comparison with non-gamers who didn't have a clue how to hold it. Gamers had a little bit more confidence, although a few misconceptions (mainly with ballistics). And gamers did better at shooting. I'll search for the study when I have time... wrote:
The Call of Duty Effect

Posted on February 9, 2010 by Caleb

Are video games creating so called “gun experts” that don’t know anything about guns? The short answer is “yes”, but to call this “The Call of Duty Effect” or to act like it’s a new phenomenon is kind of short sighted. This has been going on ever since Counterstrike first came out and became (for its time) the first person shooter for people to play. I enjoyed Counterstrike. I played it a lot. What I never thought was that my ability to hose bullets out of a simulated MP5 and rack up head shots would translate to any sort of actual skill or knowledge with firearms.

My world crosses over quite a bit with the gaming world – I started playing Wing Commander on an IBM 386; and while I don’t play games nearly as much as I once did I still enjoy the occasional round of Counterstrike or Day of Defeat. Two of my brothers actually work in the gaming industry as well, so there’s quite a bit of crossover there. As games become more and more realistic in their depiction of firearms (from a graphics standpoint anyway) I do think that you’ll find an ever increasing number of “video game kids” that think their video game knowledge will translate into real world knowledge.

But here’s the thing – yeah, those kids can be annoying at times. But instead of shunning them or casting them aside, I truly believe that we need to embrace the video game generation and their love of firearms. You see a kid that’s interested in learning about the Bushmaster ACR, or M4 Carbines or whatever because he’s been playing Modern Warfare? Talk to that kid. Educate him, don’t dismiss him. Someone come to your range with his freshly purchased semi-auto Thompson because it was awesome in a World War II game? That kid is the future of our shooting sports, right there. Take him to a USPSA match, because that kid needs the adrenaline from Run and Gun.

I have probably said this before, but I honestly believe that the video game generation is our future in the shooting sports. Think about it for a minute – kids growing up playing games that involve firearms are going to have fewer mystical beliefs than those that have never been exposed to any type of firearm, digital or otherwise, so there is the potential for great teaching and recruiting opportunities. It’s up to us to capitalize on that opportunity.
More articles like this in this thread.

Re: Do such sports and games affect reality?

Posted: Sun Jul 20, 2014 4:20 pm
by jcheng14
Resurrecting an old thread, but here's my thoughts. It's been a fair few number of years since I've last really been active on these boards. I've since joined more serious Mil-Sim teams, travelling nationally and recognized withing the upper circles of the sport. I've also started taking more shooting classes. Carbine / shoothouse / low light etc. I'll start with this. What you do is always situation dependent. I just read over the muzzles up or down thread and it pained me a little to see how rigid I was back then. The basic point is that you do what makes sense in any given situation. In a helo? Muzzle down. In a boat? Muzzle up. Defending your own home? Depends on where you are. If you're upstairs and you have guests in the basement, muzzle up. If you're upstairs and everybody is in a secure location on that floor muzzle down.

In much the same way, everybody needs more than one skill to be practiced. No one set of TTP's will ALWAYS be best. It's up to us to recognize which would fit best for a given situation and make sure we can execute what we need to do with respect to that situation. Does this require more training? Yes. You can't just fall back on one option, but with enough training you execute the correct action without thought. It just happens.

So what about sports and games with respect to real life? Well, we used to use the army manuals and trainings for entries and such. The problem is they don't work. They were derived from police work which has a different set of assumptions. Police raiding a given location for whatever reason have different circumstances. For example, a suspect may know there are coming but not know exactly when. You still have a surprise element. You might have more information to work with such as the layout of the building and the location of the suspect in the building. You are also typically able to bring overwhelming force. 10-20 guys to get 1-2-3 people. In the military, and in these games things are generally more even in terms of readiness and numbers count. The conclusion is that unless you have explosives or DD and are facing opposition prepared for you to enter you WILL take casualties. If they are competent and you do not have a method of entry that incorporates DD or explosive entry or a non-traditional path of entry you WILL be gunned down. In fact, we saw in Fallujah (and in MOUT facilities such as Drum, Shelby, Grayling, Guernsey, Zussman) that stacking outside doesn't work well. You need control of the entire area before you can safely stack. Grouping like this, especially when having to take the time to get everybody in the same rhythm necessitates a natural pause that will spell death if they have any shooters outside the building you are stacking on. I cannot count the times that we have murdered entire squads that tried to stack on an adjacent building from us. We've developed different TTP's utilizing suppressive fire on the building itself, smoke to obscure our approach, and pyro and immediate entry when you get to the door. The first person to the door is actually the second in. First person gets to the door and bangs with frag or flash, second person enters at the run, transitioning to the combat glide just around the corner. First person enters second and takes the opposide side. It's imperfect, but given the circumstances it's what works best.

Does this mean stacking is obsolete? No. It works well for what it was designed for. But we have to remember WHAT it was designed for and not try to apply it to situations that do not fit those criteria.

Simulated death hundreds of times allows you to determine what works well and what doesn't. The most shocking thing we learned was that our airsoft team had very similar TTP's to R1-NC. R1-NC is made primarily of Marines, with some MARSOC / Recon etc. They had their TTPs written by people who were in the field and observed first hand what worked well and what didn't. People getting shot, how to not get shot, and how to shoot the bad guys. Our team did the same, but with plastic instead of bullets. Neither of our TTP's resembles what is taught in the schools, or in any of the manuals. Sporting / Gaming can thus clearly be a benefit. We came to the same conclusion as they did, without having had people die!

Having said that, you have to also keep in mind the limitations of what you game when you apply it to reality. You can't shoot through walls in airsoft. Can you in real life? Depends. In America? Probably. Drywall, aluminum siding, etc doesn't stop bullets. Maybe brick or such. The mud walls in the sandbox do okay with it. All depends on the situation and how you adapt to it. We've very good at gaming. We have enough experience to tell the other side's effective range and we can move to a better position just outside of it. If they had actual rifles, we would have our maneuverability cut way down and not be able to execute some of the things we do.

The other thing is, if you game too much it affects your shooting. There's no recoil. Make sure your cadence of fire is realistic. We use replicas that are designed to mirror the exact thing. 1:1 spec in weight, size, everything. Still, no recoil and the CH doesn't work. I was recently at a class where the instructor wanted us to use the CH after a reload rather than the bolt release. Fine, it's good to have other skills in the toolbox right? I found myself automatically going to the bolt release automatically. No matter what. Hundreds of thousands of reps from playing, our replicas need you to work the bolt release after an empty chamber before they will resume firing. During malfunction practice I found myself automatically going to reload. In the game, there are no malfunctions (well, not really). You get a dead trigger you reload. I was doing that instantly. No pause to evaluate the problem and if I could have an operable weapon faster just by using the CH.

So, yes. These all impact your habits in reality. You can devise better procedures. You can create bad habits. These can be good or bad. While I had problems with some of the finer points of the manipulations (malfunction clearing and CH instead of bolt release) I had far more skill than all of my classmates in other manipulations such as reloads etc. The problems I had can be directly traced to gaming. The advantages I had the same. One other aspect I had an advantage in is my gear. I had my gear sorted ahead of time. Many of the shooters in the class (both civilian and LE) had gear problems throughout. Fighting with slings, mag or pouch placement, or just realizing the gear setup they had wasn't good for them.

In my opinion? FOF is great. You learn so much from it without having to have people die. You just need to make sure you don't overly optimize for training // what the other people SHOULD do. Unified rules in the UFC prevent kicks to the head of a downed opponent (who has a hand on the ground) that rule won't save you in real life, you might win the sporting fight but you'd be dead on the street. I've seen teams of good mil-sim players roll over other mil-sim teams but fold to local CQB run and gun teams. In one instance, you've let the training assumptions take precedence over the situation in real life. In the other you've optimized against what you know, but aren't flexible enough to deal with unfamiliar things.