ARMA 3 is an open-world tactical military shooter with an emphasis on simulation gameplay in both single- and multiplayer modes.
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Pro Huge open maps
As ARMA 3 is an open-world experience, singleplayer missions are not as linear and take place in the same map area as the game's multiplayer mode. There are a couple of different islands to explore in ARMA 3, including Altis which has a size of over 100 square miles (270 km²). Stratis is the smallest island in ARMA but is still respectable in size but 7.7 square miles (20 km²). A new map - Tanoa - is scheduled to be included in the paid Apex Expansion pack, with a size of 38.6 square miles (100 km²).
Pro Best in class authenticity
ARMA 3 is built as a simulation-type game and features rather tactical gameplay with a slow pace. The developers use real-life military weapons, equipment and vehicles. Even some of the environments in the game are virtually indistinguishable from their real-life counterpart. ARMA 3's gameplay also encompasses more than a regular first person shooter, as military tactics such as water attacks, giving orders to squadmates and drone strikes are necessary in order to successfully complete a mission. Elements such as destruction are extremely important, as certain specific parts of a vehicle can be damaged.
Pro Long single-player campaign
The average playtime for the single-player campaign (referred to as 'Main Story) of ARMA 3 clocks in at just under 20 hours, while a 100% complete playthough of the campaign averages 39 hours of playtime.
Pro No player limit in multiplayer games
ARMA 3 doesn't impose restrictions on its servers, allowing for a true sandbox experience with a large population. Battles can be fought with hundreds or even thousands of players; multiplayer warfare is definitely large-scale.
Pro Underwater gameplay
ARMA 3 features underwater gameplay with diving gear and underwater weapons. Underwater gameplay is noticeably different, because it uses a third movement axis.
Con Steep learning curve
The tactical aspect of ARMA 3 is also portrayed in the somewhat difficult controls and steep learning curve of the game. For example, a lot of different buttons and keystrokes have to be remembered for all the different commands, equipment options and vehicle controls. There is no in-game tutorial, the only way to learn how the game works in by trial and error, a field guide or by using in-game hints. Tactical elements and strategies aren't explained in the game.
Con Framerate isn't consistent
ARMA suffers from some framerate issues, with very variable results in both single- and multiplayer situations. Often the game will perform well in multiplayer, while dropping down to a severely worse framerate in a single player mission. Similar problems occur vice versa as well, which results in a very inconsistent framerate.