BCM93 - Wandering frags and weapons

(5:25) Level 5 ('Assault on the Control Room') on Heroic. As a quick follow-up to my plasma grenade movies, this shows frag grenades and weapons moving about. The movements are mostly horizontal but there's also a sinking plasma rifle. I used a twin bridges megabattle save in which I had a large squad of Marines I could easily kill (featured in BCM89).

Released January 25th 2014, gameplay recorded November 18th-21st 2014.


00:02 (Wandering frag) In this first part you see a wandering frag, moving across the snow in somewhat stuttering fashion, including localized directional changes but maintaining the same overall direction. When it comes to wandering frags, this sort of pattern seems quite common. I include a close-up of it seeming to stop, yet eventually starting up again. Actually it was never fully motionless there. It rose very slightly and slowly. At a later time this frag was eventually visibly off the ground by something like half the thickness of a plasma pistol. You can catch a glimpse of that at about 2:31. It wasn't very spectacular so I haven't bothered showing a close-up.

02:08 (Sunken plasma rifle) The plasma rifle in that first section was actually sinking, as I mentioned in the movie. But it was so slow as to be almost imperceptible, even during the speeded-up play. Nevertheless it eventually got almost completely submerged, as you can see in this second part, where the sinking is just about perceptible. This was about 11.5 minutes after the movie's opening shot. I'm already carrying a plasma rifle (so the HUD didn't show an ugly pick-up prompt), but I swap it for a launcher so I can then pick up the sunken rifle.

02:37 (Wandering plasma rifle) Having dropped the plasma rifle I had, I zoom in with the sniper view and immediately notice it moving. Movement of a weapon or frag is always immediately detectable by the slightly flickering edges. I drop an AR nearby to act as a visual anchor point, aiding the perception of motion. The rifle moves across the snow for a while but then actually stops. I mean completely stops. No edge flickering.

03:23 (Multiplying frags, ha ha) After going rampant on the Marines yet again, I come across these two frags separating. It briefly looks as if they're multiplying, but that's not the case of course. I mean, this stuff is strange but not that strange! Only one of the frags is moving, and it's doing so in quite an irregular way. Eventually it seems to be just jiggling about on the spot, and I show a 10x close-up. When I give it a shunt with a rocket however, it starts moving around again. It's again rather irregular, and looked pretty random in fact, reminiscent of a 'random walk' (from mathematics). After the speeded-up phase shown here, it wandered towards the right for a while.

04:57 (Wandering AR) The footage so far was all from some play on January 18th, but I've got three short clips from the 21st to end the movie. This first one shows a moving AR. After moving rightwards as seen here, it rose slightly for about 11 seconds, moved rightwards for a few seconds, rose again for about 18 seconds, then moved leftwards a short way and stopped. The total rise in height was approximately 1 gradation on that sniper scale. In other words, not much.

05:04 (Frag moving through plasma rifle) Here we've got a wandering frag, heading through a plasma rifle. Looks kind of amusing I think. As far as motion goes, dropped grenades and weapons don't take any physical account of one another, as far as I'm aware.

05:11 (Backtracking frag) To end the movie, here's a clip with a bit of an amusing twist; or at least, that was the idea. A frag wanders right, pauses a while, then heads back the way it came! This wasn't the only directional reversal I saw in my hours of watching, but it was probably the best.

Closing remarks After my plasma grenade movies I was curious to see what behaviour I could observe in regard to frags and weapons, so I got busy with some Marines and this is the result. I'm not sure how long I spent overall - several hours or more perhaps - but seeing wandering frags and weapons doesn't seem to be very hard. It's not like the phenomenon is super-rare.

I did start wondering whether some weapons are more wander-prone than others though. I wasn't doing a scientific check on that, but I'll mention that it was a long time before I saw a needler moving about, and even then it was only small motions, unlike what I've seen with a plasma rifle and AR. I may try some proper testing later, to try and get a better picture of things, but for the time being I've definitely had enough of checking weapons for motion! Frags too. I need to get back to using these things against covies, instead of staring at them!

I was a little disappointed not to see a properly rising frag grenade during my time with the Marines. The frag seen in the first part of the movie rose a little, but its behaviour was nothing like the plasma grenade of BCM91. Maybe I'll get to see a rising frag some other time though - and record it.