Simulator Experience

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WillBrink

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Tried it at a local place that uses one for their course required to get an LTC.* Ever used a shooting simulator? This was my first time, and it was a blast. Worlds best video game. Does a simulator replace range time? Of course not, but it also allows you to do many things you cant do at a range, either for practical reasons or safety reasons or both. I could see taking a course based on the simulator as being another worthy tool in the tool box as there is an endless amount of scenarios and such that can be thrown at you.

My first thought of course was “I gotta get me one of these!” That was tempered a bit once I learned the cost of the set up (10k or so) but if you figured what you could save in ammo, it could be done at home, and what it could add to your shooting abilities, might still be worth it! I recommend everyone try one of these gizmos at least once.

Most interesting to me is the gun. I had expected the let down of a simulator to be a lack of realism with the gun. However, the gun is a stock Glock handgun (forget the model #) thats got a specialized barrel and other gizmos that are driven by high pressure air. The result is, recoil is essentially like shooting a 9mm Glock with approx noise level as if you had your ears on. So, the actual shooting experience has the realism needed there.

FAS is supposed to have more advanced courses using the simulator and I can see it would be of value as one more tool in the tool box for LEO (some of whom have depts. Already using simulators) and civilians looking for additional training and experiences. Of course mil has been using simulators f all kinds for years.

The only real draw back of a simulator is obvious: it’s a tool, and a potentially good one, but can NEVER replace range time, etc.

* www.massfirearmsschool.com

Why I was there: Went to Mass Fire Arms school with GF for her required course to get her LTC (on Valentines day no less!) and owner of MFS offered to let me play the simulator. My GF is from the Midwest and has been to the range with me, etc, so she’s not new to guns per se. I think she out shot the men in the class... Once she was told their were no ammo limits to the simulator, she used the modified Glock more like an SMG and just ripped across BGs. Proud moments…I was calling her “Uzi Annie” all the way home ‘till I was told to “shut up”, but I digress....:)
 

AssadUSMC

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Looks good - like a newer version of FATS. I've trained in FATS simulators lots of times in the Marines, DEA, my current gig. Definitely helps to know how to handle scenarios and graphically demonstrates where your shots are going on moving, man-sized targets.
 
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WillBrink

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Looks good - like a newer version of FATS. I've trained in FATS simulators lots of times in the Marines, DEA, my current gig. Definitely helps to know how to handle scenarios and graphically demonstrates where your shots are going on moving, man-sized targets.

For sure. One thing I learned is I had a bad habit of shooting non threats. Range, IDPA, etc can simulate good guys from bad, but this simulator has a good guy who looks like the wrestler Steve Auston with only a badge on his belt and a gun pointing at you. Your threat bells go off and you are pulling that trigger a millisecond before you see that tiny badge on his belt. I rarely if ever shoot good guy targets in say IDPA or in courses, etc as it's obvious who is who. This simulator had good guys and bad differing only by a badge on their belt or in their hand, and your eyes go right to the gun. Good learning experience there.

Another great thing about this simulator. We all know BGs don't go down as we might want after our neat double tap to the chest. The computer will randomly select number of rnds it takes for them to drop, which really messes with your normal training patterns. One guy might go down with a single shot, but others might take 5-6rnds, which throws off your tempo. We know this is a fact of "real world" encounters but most still fall into a tempo in our shooting patterns, and this exposes that weakness for those (me!) who have not experienced that first hand. It also adds interesting decision making when dealing with tactical priority and or sequence of the targets.

In this simulator, women were always BGs. :D
 

AssadUSMC

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Good points - I've taken tons of target discrimination drills... You can usually come out on top if you can discern threat/non-threat in less than 1 second (not counting an ambush).

Also, the multiple hits thing is very important. I know a lot of schools preach controlled pairs (i.e. double-tap), then assess... Too many people think, "Oh I put two shots on him, I'm good." If there's more than one assailant, that's probably a good way to approach it: neutralize (even if temporarily) a threat, move to the next one. However if there's one bad guy, just keep pumping high-quality shots until the threat is gone.
 

Centermass

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FATS were never designed to replace range time.

Their primary purpose is to get you think, decide and act, although marksmanship plays a minor role.
 

AssadUSMC

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FATS were never designed to replace range time.

Their primary purpose is to get you think, decide and act, although marksmanship plays a minor role.

Of course, just like a treadmill never replaces hitting the road...

I think it's good to show all the range hotshots how they can suck when the target is moving, ducking, etc. I know lots of folks that can punch pretty little holes in paper, but then lose the plot when things get active.
 

Mac_NZ

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Sounds like our WETS. Can be a good training tool but it aint the same without the sweat and being burnt by your mates ejecting brass.
 
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