Foregrip and heavy barrel: Best friends forever (BF3)


Original title: “Foregrip and heavy barrel: Best friends forever,” 14.12.2012
Author: Rezal

People hate the foregrip. Good for them. However when you are looking for the best accuracy, the combination of the heavy barrel and the foregrip often yields the best results. Even on weapons where you would be called a horrible player for using it. Why is that?

In the march patch, DICE aimed for a few things when they reworked the attachments:
-the grip will give you +0.1 ADS standing minspread
-the grip will reduce the stronger side of the recoil by 0.1
-they heavy barrel on assault rifles and carbines gives you 0.25 times the minspread.

While the second point isn’t quite true anymore after multiple recoil changes with some forgotten foregrip adjustments, it should still be obvious that:
-your ADS standing minspread will effectively only increase by 0.025
-your ADS moving minspread will increase a little more on “accurate” weapons due to the higher foregrip multiplier, so carbines will be hurt less by the increased spread when on the move
-your recoil reduction will be in the 0.1 area, still outweighing the foregrip spread penalty when moving on most assault rifles.

Deviation, spread and recoil
Imagine you want to shoot a certain spot. Now imagine sphere, where your position (or rather the spot between your eyes where your bullets will come from) is its center and the spot which you want to hit a spot on said sphere (this is actually enough to define a sphere, since you have a center and its radius, which is the distance to target). When you shoot, your bullet will hit the sphere at a certain spot. The angle between bullet-hits-sphere and your target is your bullet’s deviation.

Your deviation will contain contain your weapon’s spread and misaligned crosshair.

Weapon spread is when your bullet exits the weapon not in the direction your crosshair is pointing. The allowed directions the bullet can exit the weapon form a cone. I you shoot a wall (without any scope sway, spread increase or recoil, i.e. single fire bipod), your bullets would hit a circular area. From the way spread is implemented, half your bullets will hit the inner 25% of that area, the other half will hit the outer 75%. So you could say that the mechanism favors the less extreme spread.

Crosshair misaligned is how far you aim from where you should aim. This includes bullet drop, compensating for moving targets (leading) and, if you’ve just fired a shot, how far recoil moved your crosshair from the correct direction. You can take care of bullet drop and leading, so those things won’t be discussed in this accuracy consideration.

Recoil however is not so easy. It consists of two components, vertical and horizontal recoil. Recoil is applied after each shot, except for burst AN94. Unlike spread, it doesn’t affect your first shot, only the following ones. Vertical recoil is the same for all shots except the first one, which is multiplied with the FSM. This makes is predictable and able to be compensated for. Horizontal recoil is at least partially random. There is an interval of values it can assume, and at least for the first two recoils, our observations hint that it is completely random over the whole interval. You cannot negate the effect of this randomness like you can do with the vertical recoil. And it gets worse. Weapons with unbalanced recoil will drift to one side, which will take you away from your desired spot even further. Here you will have to compensate for your weapon’s average drift to get it back to balanced recoil levels. Weapons with unbalanced horizontal recoil are worse than weapons with balanced horizontal recoil. Horizontal recoil has another detrimental property: It will move your crosshair horizontally. A player model is usually taller than wide, so horizontal is just the direction you want your crosshair not to move.

With those numbers and explanations, let’s have a more detailed look at what happens when you combine the foregrip and the heavy barrel:
-Your first shot deviation will only be affected by spread. However, we don’t want to shoot infinitely small targets. If your target is reasonably large, you can still get the same accuracy with more spread (assuming sufficiently good aim). And my plots will show that this is the case most of the time.
-The following shots’ deviation is influenced by horizontal recoil and spread. With the bar grip combo, your maximum deviation in horizontal direction might be 0.175° (second shot spread) plus another 0.2° from recoil. Without the grip, you would end up with something like 0.15° spread plus 0.3° recoil, which is significantly more. Additionally, it is more likely to get extreme recoil values than extreme spread values. And even if you get an extreme spread value, it might be up or down rather than left or right. For ADS moving performance, the spread penalty for the grip combo will be larger and comparable to some of the foregrips’ recoil boni, but the less detrimental spread distribution will often keep the performance on par with the bar only configuration.

There you have it. The foregrip is a good attachment when used with the heavy barrel. I will add weapon plots to the following posts so you can actually see the changes. I decided to go far three round bursts because I think Plotic is very accurate until this point. Also, for more shots both configurations will have a big amount of spread, which will lead to quite low hit rates anyway. I also created plots for the mag fed LMGs, which will show that you need a certain minspread reduction from the heavy barrel to make it work.

Perfect recoil control was assumed. Distances are 50 meters for ADS moving and 80 meter for ADS standing still.


Assault Rifles


AEK has a good grip, so use it.


Decent grip, worth using it.


Same as with the AK74M, decent and recommended grip.


Very good grip, recommended.


Best grip in the assault rifle class, has probably been then obvious choice for everybody.


High moving spread penatly but good recoil reduction, whether you should use it or not depends on your playstyle. When you like shooting on the move, don’t use it. If you stand still a lotit has some small advantages, but bipod might be better.


Just use the fucking grip.


The foregrip is also recommended for the L85.


The A3 has probably the worst grip after the G3, but it is still helpful.


The same grip turns out to be better on the A4.


Kept the buffed grip from the September patch. Recommended.


If you want good burst performance, the foregrip is a great choice.

5 round bursts data (# of hits):




When I tell you that the grip is good on the A91, it is probably nothing surprising for you.


The ACR has a relatively bad heavy barrel and foregrip. While the grip has a small beneficial effect overall, it might be worth using a bipod instead.


Yes, please.


If you don’t grip the G36C, I have some bad news for you.


Not as good as on the G36C, but still really good.


As with the M16A4, the grip is a winner on this one.


Less beneficial on the A1, but nothing wrong with using it.


The grip has a very low spread penalty here, so it even has a decent effect when moving.


People call me horrible, but is is a good combo.


If you really want to use this weapon, grip it up.




Has a slightly better heavy barrel than the other LMGs, but not good enough.




Same as M27, so no.


Better moving spread than the other LMGs, so it suffers less there. But it’s still not good enough.


Even the best grip of the LMG class isn’t good enough.