2-1: Running With Wolves (Day 1)
Infiltrate the rugged mountains surrounding the Shahikot Valley on stealthed-out ATV's. You will encounter enemy outposts and villages along tjhe way to Observation Post Clementine. It's there where you will rain down tactical airstrikes on enemy positions.
This is your first mission as Deuce, a Tier 1 Operator who belongs to the US Army's Delta Force. Deuce is part of the Tier 1 unit AFO Wolfpack (along with Operators Dusty, Vegas, and Panther), and is the designated marksman of the unit; he always carries an M110 SASS, and an MP7A1 as back-up. Although he is only present for two missions as a playable character, he is present throughout the game as NPC support, providing sniper and air support. You will frequently hear his voice on the net, and he was also one of the voices that was featured in the game trailer that was widely posted online during the pre-release phase of the game.
This mission begins with you waiting near your ATV as your buddies roll up on their ATV's and, once you hear the abbreviated AAF for the most recent events and an outline for the plan for this mission, you jump on your ATV and head along the designated path, following your partner Dusty. Use the Right Trigger to accelerate, and the Left Trigger to slow down and reverse. The Left Joystick is your directional control, and holding the B-Button in turns initiates a power-slide.
As you progress along the trail following Dusty he will use a stream bed that has water present as the main route. You might find that turning on your night vision goggles helps you in spotting potential hazards ahead as you drive.
As you approach a bridge ahead of you a convoy of trucks appears and Dusty has you stop and remain quiet to let them pass without detecting you. This happens just past your first checkpoint, so if you mess up you can reload to that. After the brief stop you again proceed, until you reach a point just outside of a nearby village, where you dismount and proceed on foot, temporarily abandoning your rides.
As you set up on the bluff overlooking the village the other string, Vegas and Panther, will be approaching on foot from a different direction -- you will be made aware of a lookout on the wall, and using your silenced sniper rifle, you will take that Tango out with a solid head-shot from where you are positioned. Once you do that, you will observe Vegas and Panther going over the wall,
With the perimeter clear it is time to enter the compound, so follow Dusty as he moves along the path and drops down, and then enters through an opening in the wall and begins to move through the compound. You pass through a building to the corner of a wall, where you encounter a pair of guards having a chat -- Dusty tells you to pick one, and he will take the other. You can use your sniper rifle here but why do that when you can switch to your MP5? It is silenced, and really, why waltz in single-shot when you can rock-n-roll with full auto?
With those two down, continue to follow Dusty, He directs you to clear the building your left while he takes the one on the right -- inside you will see a window overlooking the courtyard. Take up a position there and use your sniper rifle to one-shot a guy on the tower in the distance, and a Tango walking a patrol on the wall to the right.
Something goes wrong -- what is not clear -- but the Tangos become aware that you are there. A handful burst through the gate and start firing. Quickly and coolly put them down, then follow the first string as they advance through the courtyard and into the headquarters building. Inside Vegas finds intel that indicates that things are a lot worse than you previously thought.
This is where you learn that the pogue in a suit in DC has implemented a plan that will be disastrous if it is implemented -- pay attention to the dialogue here, as it moves the plot forward.
A Little Barrett Fun
Follow Dusty back to your ATV and then follow him as he leads you. Eventually you will reach an overlook above a small base across the valley -- you will stop and Panther will instruct you to take out the Tangos ahead. For this you will use the Barrett M82/M107 50 caliber anti-material rifle that is strapped to your ATV.
Now, this thing was really designed to be used to take out light vehicles, since it uses armor-piercing rounds that can easily punch through light armor, but at very long distances it is an excellent sniper rifle, if a bit heavy.
There is a long running myth that rifles that chamber the .50 caliber round -- like the Barrett -- are not legal for use against human targets. This is complete and utter bullshit. There is no law, Geneva Convention or otherwise, that says this, and even if there was, the JAG issued a ruling that states explicitly that it can be used on human targets, even if it is loaded with Raufoss Mk 211 rounds!
Now having said that, I want to point out to you that I never saw this weapon used against human targets in the field, not once. The reason is not some silly non-existent law, but rather a matter of logistics. You use the right tool for the job, and the Barrett is the tool you use to take out lightly armored vehicles, radar cabins, parked aircraft, and command trailers, not people. That is not to say you cannot use it against people -- it happens -- I was just never present when it happened.
For a long time Drill Instructors used to tell the marksmen to aim at the web belt or gear on a target rather than at soft squishy bits, but that was not because it is illegal to shoot a person with that weapon, it is because hitting equipment has the added effect of generating a shrapnel cone around the target! Basically the bullet striking the kit can cause bits of the kit to explode in different directions, which increases the kill force of the strike while at the same time potentially killing or wounding nearby enemy combatants. This is called being economical -- the bullets that this thing fires are not cheap, so you should get the best effect you can from firing one.
Now back to the mission...
There are two stationary targets and one moving target. The stationary targets can be blocked, and in theory you should be able to take them out anyway because of the Barrett's excellent penetration power, but for some reason the game does not always think so... You may obtain better results by aiming at your target, and not trying to kill him through the barricades here.
With the moving target, you will need to lead him a little, like shooting clay pigeons, so that he and the bullet arrive at the same spot, at the same time. Go ahead and re-load the last checkpoint if you do not feel like you mastered this shot, it will not hurt the game and complete familiarity with the weapon may help later in the game.
Now continue along and you will go on foot to the compound where the trucks are parked. Stealth in, following Dusty's lead, and when you get to the area near the trucks you will wait for the patrolling guards to leave.
OPTIONAL: While you are supposed to be stealthy and all, you can if you like drop a grenade in the middle of the five guys at the first truck to unlock the Achievement "Crowd Control" which you get for killing five Tangos with one grenade. If you decide to do that now, you will have to fight the three other guys here but the rest of the compound will not react to this and, once you leave the general area of this truck, it is like it never happened. You can always replay the mission later if you want to stick to how you would do it IRL.
Across the compound standing in a door is a Tango -- take him out when Dusty tells you to, and then cover him while he plants the first marker.
Next you will ninja through the base, letting the bad guys live where you can, and only killing when they block your route. Dusty goes to high ground to provide over-watch while you plant the next beacon, and then partner to take out a patrol. Now head to Dusty for a buddy-hoist and follow him along the path to the end where you will stop to wait for a patrol to pass.
While you are waiting, look around -- you see that set of plastic patio chairs there? I have those chairs! They are on my deck outside! It irks me that the Taliban and the Tangos like the same patio furniture as I do.
Right, so watch the patrol and when they separate it is clear to make your way across the courtyard to the open door, inside of which you will find a lone Tango with his back to you. Stealth-kill him to avoid a firefight, and then continue out the door and down to the truck, placing the marker when Dusty says it is clear.
Backtrack along your previous path, taking out the new Tango that has entered the building, then ninja over to Dusty for a Buddy-Hoist and you will learn that there is more company coming thanks to Vegas, who is providing over-watch.
On the way out there is a minor dust-up and Dusty does a knife kill, but you make it out in an orderly way to the ATV's!
Once you are back at the ATV's mount-up and follow Dusty. Along this path there will be several points where you jump your ATV through the air -- this is the only place you can easily earn the Achievement "Dropping Deuce" so you will want to do that here. The easiest way to unlock it is to be sure that you (A) keep a little distance between Dusty and your ATV's, and (B) hit each of the two jumps at full speed, straight-on. If you follow those two bits of advice, this should be cake!
If you take both jumps and, after a few seconds you do NOT unlock the Achievement, pause the game and re-load the previous checkpoint. You do not want to hit your next checkpoint without unlocking this because otherwise you will have to play through the level again to get to this point.
At the bottom after the second jump you meet up with Panther and Vegas, and the mission ends, unlocking the Achievement "Develop the Situation," for completing Running with Wolves.