Gray Zone Warfare – Ballistics Guide & Tips

Ballistics Guide & Test Report

By Spartan0536.

I have taken an interest in GZW’s ballistics system and given this is Early Access ALPHA state, its got issues to work out and I will share my premiminary and rudimentary findings as well as suggestions for loadouts in 5.56x45mm NATO.

  1. There definitely is a “shoulder meta” as of 05/16/2024, it seems as if the “hit box” for the lungs coincides with the shoulder, I would expect this to get patched ASAP.
  2. Barrel length matters A LOT, and its not setup to how it would work IRL but I see what they are going with here. Velocity drastically increases with a 20 inch barrel by 20% which gives M193 Ball, a ridiculous velocity of 1,207.2 m/s or 3,960.62 ft/s!

The only time I have seen a 5.56×45 move that fast is either in “wildcat” rounds or saboted from a .30-06.

This leads into my first tip…

When starting as a new player use M193 Ball and a 14.5 inch barrel, its going to give you the best of both worlds in terms of armor pen and tissue damage, it’s just LETHAL in this game right now.

M193 from a 20 inch barrel which you get fairly early on in the sense of a reward weapon for completing a quest is absolutely DEVASTATING even at 200m. Midnight Sapphire & Fort Narith enemies it really struggled with.

This leads me into my final bit of this post, DRAG COEFFICIENTS. It seems to me that the drag coefficients are WAY off in this game, by a factor of about 2.5x in terms of velocity or performance lost per 100m, this would explain why “sniping” and aiming for center mass at 300m produces some pretty poor results. This could also very well be an issue with hit reg at longer ranges in the game currently so I mark this as inconclusive right now but it needs to be addressed either way.

5.56x45mm Loadout Recommendations:

  • 10.5 Inch Barrel = M855 & M855A1 EPR (100m or less)
  • 14.5 -16 Inch Barrel = HPBT, M855, M855A1 EPR (150m – 200m or less)
  • 18 – 20 inch Barrel = M193, M855, M855A1 EPR (250m – 300m or less)*

*With 18 and 20 inch barrels HPBT seems to do solid damage past 100m, tested numerous times at the starting town, close up it takes 2-3 hits to the chest and at or near 100m it seems to 1 tap. M855A1 EPR with an 18 – 20 inch barrels against unarmored targets seems to be less than ideal, too much overpen, against armored targets it works really well.

Update: HPBT in 14.5 and 16 inch barrels seems to produce near identical results to ranged 100m+ HPBT from the 18-20 inch barrels, consistent 1 tap out to 150m

I did additional testing at Midnight Sapphire using a 20 inch barrel M4 and M193, it struggled requiring 3-4 hits due to the armor the enemies there wear which seems to consistently be Pantsir 2.0 and 6B23. M193 is NOT RECOMMENDED for Midnight Sapphire, you CAN use it but you are far better off using M855 or M855A1 EPR.

M193 seems to perform EXCELLENTLY with a 20 inch barrel against Level III STEEL, but Ceramic with the PANTSIR or 3+ with UHWMPE (RPC) and Ceramic (M2) seems to stop it with ease.

If the targets are unarmored or are wearing Level III UHWMPE or Level III Steel it seems to be pretty devastating at 100m or less.

I can confidently say and recommend that as soon as you get an 18 or 20 inch barrel M4 as a reward that you can slap on M193 and usually 1-2 tap the vast majority of enemies in the torso.

Volodymyr Azimoff
About Volodymyr Azimoff 519 Articles
Being a big gaming fan, I believe that I have a lot to share with other gamers. I got my first official job in the game industry in 2005 and continue to develop there. It's a true blessing when your passion, hobby, and job combine into something one. My favorite console is the Nintendo Switch. I think you can all guess why. Because I just bought a Steam Deck. I love playing on PC, but my main love for me will always be Xbox. Anyway, it's complicated and simple at the same time. After all, I'm back in the days of the ZX Spectrum (1994)…

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