The Handling of Helicopters

I have seen a lot of critique here on the handling of vehicles, especially helicopters. And while i must say that the handling is far from perfect, once you understand how helicopters work it becomes a lot easier to fly them. There already are posts explaining this, but those were replies to other posts which makes it hard to find them. I do understand it is a bit late for this because the Open Beta is now over. But I still felt like posting it here for all of you who would like to fly choppers but can't really figure out how to do that, or just didn't have the time to do so. So you can get going on launch day.

While I would prefer Helicopter-Controls closer to ArmA or Battlefield, Wildlands is handling things differently. Even if you enable mouse control (which I wouldn't recommend at all), you won't come close to the feeling of piloting a Cobra in Battlefield 4.

So here's a simple guide on how these fast and powerful machines handle:

First you have to understand that the game has some sort of assistant when flying. This assistant knows two modes: Hover and Travel

This is the standard-mode of the helicopter. You are in hover mode as soon as you turn on the engine. The controls for this mode are quite easy:

  • Shift = ascend
  • Ctrl = descend
  • W + Shift = forward
  • S + Shift = backward
  • A / D = turn / bank (depends on the speed)

The hover mode is meant to be used to maneuver when landing or taking-off.

Now this is kind of special and it took me some time to figure it out correctly, since it isn't really explained in the game. Travel mode is entered by pressing "Shift + W" for some time (about 5 seconds) to gain speed. During this time you might have noticed that at first your chopper goes forward. But then suddenly starts to lose altitude. This is the point when you entered travel mode. As soon as the helicopter loses altitude you should release the W-Key, but keep pressing Shift. Whenever you let go of Shift, you will go back into Hover mode instantly.

In this mode the helicopter will keep moving forward aslong as you hold shift. The following controls will either cancel the forward move (release shift / hit control) or control you helicopter while moving forward.

The controls:

  • Shift = forward (when released, the controls will switch back to hover mode)
  • W = descend
  • S = ascend
  • A / D = bank
  • Shift (when released) = break / back into hover mode
  • Ctrl = hard break / descend rapidly when keeping pressed (hover mode)

So that's really all that is to say. I hope this has helped some of you to fly more steadily and with less turbulence once the game comes out. The rest is really just practice and with some of that you can actually make the helicopters land where you want them to.

Edit: For the controls on console I'd assume it works the same way with the two modes but i have no evidence to support this assumption.

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