In the warzone, Operators infiltrate the DZ via free-fall, parachuting to safety after dropping out of the sky from a high altitude.
Whether it is an initial Infil or redeployment, the warm-up lobby or the actual Warzone match, learning how to parachute effectively is your first major key for survival. And, during the Warzone match, using your parachute effectively across Verdansk or Rebirth Island can allow you to cover great distances, fall safely from a great vertical height, and even perform some cunning combat techniques.
To begin, let’s cover the basics of pulling the ‘chute:
The Basic Guide to Surviving a Free-Fall
After dropping out of the plane with your squad – or alone – your Operator will enter free-fall. The right side of the HUD will show your altimeter, a scale that shows your current altitude above ground, your speed, and the last possible parachute-deployment height.
The final scale changes depending on what you are above as you fall; if you are landing near a city block, for example, the death zone will change to show a skyscraper.
Unless the failsafe auto deploy occurs – this is on for initial infiltrations by default – if you fail to pull the cord, your Operator will die.
Planning the Drop
When the match starts, and your squad disembarks from the helicopter or cargo plane along with the rest of the Operators, it’s important to have a strategy. Be sure you’ve already planned the following:
Tac Map Time: Bring up the Tac Map just prior to dropping and decide (ideally with your squad) where you want to land, adding a marker to the map to show the exact location. The plane’s route is also displayed on the map, and the route varies every match, meaning you have different landing options each time.
Squad Leader: Choose a Squad Leader (who has a special insignia on your HUD and Tac Map) during this time, and let them make final decisions during the match, to minimize confusion.
Timing the Drop: Exercise patience or drop immediately; it’s up to you, and dependent on your team’s pre-planning. But all jump out at around the same point in time so you can land in relatively the same area, at relatively the same time.
Picking a Place: Learn the location names, either by reading the Tac Map Atlas chapter of this guide or coming up with your own nicknames. Then choose the place, land there, and hit the ground running rather than stalling or waiting for squadmates to join you.
While in the air, looking up or down will change your Operator’s drop angle. By default, your Operator will be level with the ground; this is the slowest way to descend. At the opposite end of the spectrum, point your Operator straight down to the ground (head-first), ensuring they reach the ground as quickly as possible.
Tilting your Operator between this range (so they fall at a more diagonal angle in the sky) allows you to cover some serious distance. This is especially true after the parachute is active, as they will float over to the direction you are facing. Try experimenting with different launch angles, even in the middle of a drop, to figure out what combination of speed and drop angle (to cover horizontal distance) works for you.
Drop Styles (HALO versus HAHO)
Outside of getting the right drop angle, the other big technique to learn is when to open your chute. Parachuting techniques fall into one of two categories based on when an Operator opens the chute: High Altitude, Low Opening (HALO) and High Altitude, High Opening (HAHO).
Theoretically speaking, you can pull your parachute a few seconds after the initial freefall. This, or pulling the parachute before you get about two-thirds down to the ground, is considered a high opening altitude, as you will have plenty of time to soar over Verdansk to find a suitable place to land.
Usually, taking a HAHO approach is also a safe option; unless you knock into a building or tree, you won’t need to worry about free-falling to your death since your parachute is opened far before it is absolutely necessary.
However, Operators who have already landed on the ground can shoot – and potentially down – a player as they are parachuting in. This is where a HALO drop could be more useful; deploying your parachute at a lower altitude, while it won’t give you much overall distance, can get you on the ground faster, allowing you to loot and get into combat quicker.
HALO drops are, by design, riskier; if you fail to pull a parachute above the death zone – usually about the height of a tree or three-story building – you’ll impact onto the ground, if the parachute failsafe is not active.
Note the parachute failsafe is employed during Infils in Battle Royale and Plunder game modes, if the option is kept at its default in the Settings menu.
Parachuting Expertise: In-Game Free-Falls and Parachute Cutting
Parachuting isn’t just for infiltration and redeployment; whenever you fall from a lethal height, such as from the top of a skyscraper or tower, you will have the option of deploying your parachute.
Not only can this save your life, but it can also let you cover great distances. Although an Operator flying through the sky is sure to attract attention, parachuting from a high point in Verdansk could allow for faster travel between areas, which could be important if the collapse is closing in or there is a lack of vehicles around.
Another advanced parachuting strategy is the art of cutting a parachute. At any time while your parachute is out, you can cut the cords, allowing you to re-enter free-fall after getting a few moments with your loadout in mid-air.
Cutting the cord a few meters before landing could get your Operator on the ground even faster, allowing you to potentially get a jump on other players in the vicinity. And, should you misjudge your altitude and need a second parachute, your Operator has an unlimited supply of them on to use.
Along with being a faster way to reach the ground, cutting the chute gives you the opportunity to use your loadout temporarily in mid-air. This could lead to some impressive takedowns; think jumping off a building, parachuting down and, after cutting the cord, firing a sniper rifle to obliterate an unsuspecting foe on the ground, before deploying your parachute again for a safe landing.
Parachuting Expertise: Pistol Fire
During Battle Royale mode drops, while you may not have your full complement of equipment prior to landing on the ground, you can bring out your handgun during freefalling. During Plunder mode drops, feel free to employ either weapon from your Loadout during a drop: This can lead to you employing the weapon and shooting at others engaged in the drop. Have you embarrassed a rival by defeating them with mid-air weapon fire before they even land? Employ the weapon, then Parachute, then cut the parachute and shoot again to continuously hone your aim.
Also, have you dropped onto a flying helicopter and hijacked it yet?
Parachuting Expertise: Landing Spots
The vast landscape of Verdansk provides almost limitless locations to land, but it’s worth knowing the optimal places to touch down on:
· Pick locations you know have inventory items, vehicles, and Contracts that you need.
· Choose areas that are relatively free of enemies to minimize your chance of an early defeat.
· Pick out-of-the-way areas that still allow you to grab all the equipment you need.
· Look for areas towards the middle of the map if you don’t want to spend time outrunning the circle collapse (in Battle Royale mode).
· Finally, think about remaining patient and dropping from the plane at the very last moment, then freefalling while ascertaining where your rivals are, and avoiding or ambushing them accordingly.
Parachuting Expertise: A Perfect Landing
Whether you’re on the ground already, or you’re just about to land, be certain you’re parachuting into an area that’s either relatively safe, or you know where your threats are. This means paying attention to the following:
Look Up, Down, and Around: Be sure to check behind, above, and all around you in the moments before you land (using the freelook function which increases your peripheral vision as you switch to a third person viewing perspective). There’s a chance you may be being followed by an enemy who can land behind you and quickly take you down. Secure your LZ!
Drop In, Take Out: Act fast as you land; you should already have pre-planned your route into cover, and to a Contract or Supply Box prior to hitting the ground. Also prepare for instantaneous combat; especially if you’ve been tracking a foe just in front of you who is oblivious to your Operator; or if you’ve seen an enemy on the ground and can ambush them with haste, ideally with squadmate back-up.
Safety in Numbers: Your squad is critical to your continued success. Unless specific circumstances dictate a different plan, you should be landing within a few hundred feet of your squadmates. This allows all of you to secure the initial area, deal with individual threats more effectively, and divide inventory acquirements (with one of you locating a vehicle, another gathering and pinging weaponry, and a third beginning a Contract, for example).
Parachuting Expertise: Look Up and Look Out!
Conversely, if you’ve already landed and there are enemies dropping in from the sky, it’s worth preparing to meet and greet them with violence and cunning:
Look Up and Look Out: Don’t forget to look up from time to time and ascertain if incoming foes are descending on your location from above. Then tag them before they have a chance to arm themselves properly, either before or during the parachute drop.
Leading Your Shots: The greater distance an enemy is away from you, the more you’re going to have to predict where your foe is going to be, rather than where they are at the moment you shoot at them. This is called leading your shots and is good to practice for a variety of engagements. Firing at parachutists is an easy method of honing these skills.
Cover and Surprises: You’re in danger of being seen and attacked by enemies parachuting in, as they have the height advantage to see you moving. Seek cover immediately, entering buildings and varying your movement so you aren’t predictable. Or, try coaxing an incoming airborne enemy to land close to where you’re hiding, perhaps around a corner from where you’ve placed a lethal explosive as a welcoming gift….
Useful Links: Other Guide Chapters: