BMP-2

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BMP-2: Infantry Fighting Vehicle

BMP-2 dismounting DDR infantry during the 1980s

Statistics

Main Gun: 2A42 30mm Auto-cannon
Ammunition Stowage: 500 ready/0 stowed
Default Ammunition "A": 160/0 3UBR6 APBC-T (KE), 340/0 OT HEI-T (HE)


ATGM: AT-4 or AT-5
Ammunition Stowage: 1 ready/3 stowed
Default Ammunition "A": 1/3 AT-5a "Spandrel"


Coaxial Machine Gun: PKT
Ammunition Stowage: 2000 7.62mm
Default Ammunition: 2000/0 7.62mm RU


Grenades: Smoke Grenades
Ammunition Storage: 1 salvo ready/0 stowed
Default Ammunition: 1/0 Smoke


Armor Protection:
Front Turret Armor: Protected from light auto-cannon fire (20mm)
Front Hull Armor: Protected from light auto-cannon fire (20mm)
Equipped with spall liners (the particular BMP-2 "package" represented in Seel Beasts Professional)


Vehicle Weight: 14.3 tonnes
Length: 6.72m
Width: 3.15m
Height: 2.45m (2.06m to turret top)
Engine Power: 300hp UTD-20/3 diesel
Top Speed: 45kph (cross-country)

General

Developed from lessons learned during the 1973 Yom Kippur War, the BMP-2 is essentially a product improved version of the BMP-1. Although the program to replace the BMP-1 started in 1974 (initially resulting in the upgraded BMP-1P) bureaucratic mismanagement and infighting delayed the BMP-2's development and fielding until the early 1980's. Compared to the BMP-1 the BMP-2's improvements include: an enlarged two-man turret, enhanced mine protection, slightly improved armour protection, replacement of the 73mm low-pressure gun by the 30mm model 2A42 auto-cannon, and the replacement of the AT-3 Sagger AGTM with the more capable AT-4 Spigot and AT-5 Spandrel.

The BMP-2 carries 6 dismounts, equipped with RPG-7L anti-armour weapons, a PKM, and 5.45mm rifles.

Produced from 1980 to 1989, approximately 28,000+ (including derivatives and licensed production) BMP-2 were manufactured and the design was heavily exported. Currently the BMP-2 is in service with more than 30 nations worldwide primarily concentrated in Russia, Ukraine, and Africa, along with the Near and Middle-East.

Thermal Signature

BMP-2 TIS image, front-right BMP-2 TIS image, rear-left

Crew Positions

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Commander's Position F7

Commander's unbuttoned view

In Steel Beasts the commander's position is fully crew-able and fully modeled. The commander's position is accessed by pressing F7.

From this position the user can raise and lower their perspective (and exposure level) by holding the Q key (to go up) and the Z key (to go down). The commander can also button or unbutton (close and open the TC's hatch) by pressing the B key (toggle). While unbuttoned, the TC may also wish to use binoculars to get a closer view on a distant area by pressing the N key (toggle).

TKN-3 Commander's Periscope

The TKN-3 commander's periscope is attached to fully traversable cupola and is used for target acquisition, range estimation, directing the gunner onto a target. The periscope has a limited 7x zoom. The periscope also has night vision capability, which is of better quality than the gunner's IR sight. However, the periscope has only a very limited range of movement in elevation.

The commander can access the TKN-3 periscope by pressing F3.

Once the user is at the TKN-3 periscope view, the user can traverse and elevate the cupola using either the mouse, joystick (both of which represent the commander grabbing the two side handles of the periscope and sliding it around the cupola's race-ring).

The sight on the TKN-3 is a simple reticle with lead and elevation lines. The reticle also has a series of marks used for range estimation similar to the M1 tank's GAS sight. The numbers along the bottom of the scale represent the range in hundreds of meters. To estimate range to a typical sized tank target, place the range scale so that the bottom horizontal line is where the bottom of the tracks of the vehicle is, and the top part of the scale is at the top horizontal hash mark of the turret. When the target fully fits between the two, then the range is estimated at the value above the appropriate has mark.

Like a periscope on a submarine, the TKN-3 has a handle on the left and right of the periscope each of which has a button on top of it (the periscope's handles and buttons are visible in the image above). The left handle's button is a toggle used to stabilize the periscope, that is, to keep the reticle on a certain spot even while the turret is moving. This feature is represented by pressing the , key and basically causes the cupola to counter rotate against the turret's movement. The right handle's button is used to slew the gun to place its azimuth in the direction that the periscope is looking while the button is held. This feature is represented by holding the . key, and is used to more or less put the gunner onto an intended target or to have him look in a certain direction. Note that holding this key while also moving around the periscope will override the turret and have it follow the periscope, although the commander cannot fire the main gun himself.

The TKN-3's night vision can be turned on by pressing the + key on the num pad, however, this cannot be activated during daylight. As mentioned, the passive light amplification capability and image quality of the TKN-3 is better than the gunner's IR sight.

Gunner's Primary Sight Extension (GPSE)

BMP-2's commander's IP3-3 sight

Unlike western IFVs, the BMP-2 has no GPSE sight and, as such, the gun sight view key (F2) is not used on this IFV. The commander uses his own special commander's sight and his eyes and binoculars from the unbuttoned position, or he uses the TKN-3 periscope to help lay the gunner on target and to provide feedback about shots on target.

Commander's Sight (IP3-3)

Even though the BMP-2 commander does not have a true GPSE, he does have his own specialized sight which can be used to observe and assist the gunner and as an auxiliary sight in the case the GPS is disabled. The commander can also use his sight to override and engage the target himself. The commander's sight is located just behind his TKN-3 periscope, which must be rotated to the rear in order for him to access the sight.

To access the commander's sight press F2. Once there, the view will be all black, because the armored door is closed when the sight is not in use. To open the door, press SHIFT + B. Press N to toggle magnification between 1.2x and 4x.

The three large rings around the sight are lead rings used for AA engagements. These are used to help determine lead on air targets moving at 50, 100 and 250 m/s velocities. The small horizontal line in the center of the sight is the Vertical Reference Line, which represents the center of the AA lead rings and matches super elevation equal to 31 MOA (average 1500m range to target elevated at 45 degrees in relation to firing position).

BMP-2's commander's sight view, 1.2x magnification

On the left and right side of the commander's sight are a set of horizontal lines. These lines are range scales used to set the aim point for certain types of ammunition. The scale on the far left is used for HE, the shorter scale to the right of it (second from the left) is used for KE, and the scale on the right of the sight is used for coax.

The vertical line that extends across the sight is the Adjustable Index Line, which is the line that can be moved up and down to index range. The position where the adjustable index line intersects with the vertical line that extends across the sight defines the aim point for the appropriate ammunition type at the specified range. The three smaller vertical lines to either side of the center aiming line are used to determine lead on a moving ground target. The distance between these lead lines is 5 mils.

To adjust the aim point, press SHIFT + UP to increase the range by moving the horizontal index line down the sight. Press SHIFT + DOWN to decrease range. Alternatively the mouse wheel can be used to adjust range, and holding SHIFT while doing so will increase the speed of the range adjustment.

The numbers along the range scales are in hundreds of meters (hectometers), so if you want to set the KE sight to 1200 meters then you would increase range until the horizontal aiming line is in line with the "12" range line on the KE scale.

To override the gunner so that you can move and fire the gun personally, press the P key. It is important to note that unlike other vehicles, the override on the BMP-2 is not a button that is held by the commander on his controls, rather it is a toggle switch that puts him in override mode. While overriding, the commander can fire normally. To give control back to the gunner, press the P key again. One way the commander can be sure he is overriding the gunner is whether or not the indicator lights on the commander's control handles are lit or not. When they are lit, the is overriding and when they are not lit then his control handle is inactive. The indicator lights are functionally identical to the gunner's indicator lights.

Commander's control override switch (override switch and override lights are on)

Commander's vision block view

Commander's vision block view

On some occasions the commander may need to look around the vehicle without having to spin the turret and without having to expose himself to hostile fire. The vision block view allows the commander to remain safely inside the vehicle and quickly scan around for close threats. It is most useful when enemy infantry are in the immediate area, although the TKN-3 periscope is probably more useful for this purpose. Access the commander's vision block view by pressing F4.

Once in the vision block view, the mouse or joystick can be used to quickly and seamlessly pan the commander's view from vision block to vision block, allowing him to scan around the vehicle. While the vision block view completely protects the commander from hostile fire, it does have an extremely limited field of view and offers no magnification.

Note that there are two vision blocks as part of the TKN-3 assembly and two blocks integrated into the hatch. The latter two can only be used if the hatch is closed.

Key listing for BMP-2's commander's position


General Commands:

TAB: Pop smoke. Instructs the gunner to launch smoke grenades to deploy a smoke screen in the direction that the turret is facing. Useful for breaking up enemy LRF or completely obscuring your vehicle against a non thermal sight equipped threat. Note that, by doctrine, the BMP-2's smoke grenades are angled in such a way that the smoke screen is deployed several hundred meters down range. this is because soviet doctrine is to pop smoke, and advance behind the smoke screen

Q: Raise position in hatch. Moves the commander's view and exposure level up in the hatch.

Z: Lower position in hatch. Moves the commander's view and exposure level down in the hatch.

B: Button and unbutton the hatch (toggle). This is used to close and open the hatch.

+ (num pad): TKN-3 IR mode (toggle). While in the TKN-3 periscope view (F3), this key toggles the IR sight on and off.

,: TKN-3 stabilized mode (toggle). While in the TKN-3 periscope view (F3), this key is used to toggle between a stabilized cupola so that the TKN-3 periscope counter rotates in azimuth with turret movement.

Commander's emergency trigger (behind the protective cover)

.: Slew turret to TKN-3 sight view. While in the TKN-3 periscope view (F3), hold this key to have the turret slew in azimuth to the direction that the periscope is currently facing. Release this key to release control of the turret back to the gunner.

P: Override toggle switch. Toggles the override switch on and off, allowing the commander to move and fire the gun.

SPACE: Fire the autocanon. Fires the autocanon while overriding the gunner.

SHIFT + SPACE: Manually fire the 30mm autocanon in emergency mode. Holding this key simulates the commander pulling the emergency trigger to fire the gun at its maximum rate of fire. This can be used for emergency situations and can be used at any time.

LEFT ARROW / RIGHT ARROW: Face left / face right. When in the commander's eye view F1, pressing these keys will cause the commander to face to the left or right of the main gun (turret).

UP ARROW / DOWN ARROW: When in the commander's eye view F1, pressing these keys will cause the commander to face in the direction of or to the rear of the gun (turret).


Driver related commands:

SHIFT + BACKSPACE: Shut down / start up engine (toggle). Orders the driver to shut off or start up the engine. If the commander is a platoon leader then it orders the platoon to execute a "short count" and simultaneously shut down or start up their engines.

W: Driver, move out. Instructs the driver to move forward (press again for increased speed.

S: Driver, stop. Instructs the driver to stop.

X: Driver, backup. Instructs the driver to reverse.

A: Driver, go left. Instructs the driver to go left (hold the key).

D: Driver, go right. Instructs the driver to go right (hold the key).


Gunner related commands:

SPACE BAR: Fire. Orders the gunner to fire at a target he is looking at.

H: Hold fire. Orders the gunner to hold fire. If the commander is a platoon leader then it will also order the platoon to hold fire.

F: Fire at will. Orders the gunner to fire at will. If the commander is a platoon leader then it will also order the platoon to fire at will.

E: Engage. Orders the gunner to engage, and instructs the driver to take up a battle position. If the commander is a platoon leader then it orders the platoon to engage and take up a battle position in the direction of the user's view.

M: Coax / Main gun (toggle). Orders the gunner to toggle between the main gun and coax to engage targets.

V: ATGM on / off (toggle). Turns the ATGM launcher on or off. If another human is in the gunner's position then the switch will be toggled on or off. If there is an AI gunner then the gunner will immediately flip the switch off if the gunner is unaware of any valid ATGM targets.

Commander's KE / HE ammo toggle switch

SHIFT + LEFT ARROW: Gunner, scan left. Orders the gunner to put move the turret approximately 45 degrees to the left and scan for targets.

SHIFT + RIGHT ARROW: Gunner, scan right. Orders the gunner to put move the turret approximately 45 degrees to the right and scan for targets.

SHIFT + UP ARROW: Gunner, scan front. Orders the gunner to put the gun over the front and scan for targets.

INSERT: Select KE. This key physically flips the ammo select lever on the right side of the gun to KE ammo (the down position). On the BMP-2 the commander selects the ammo type rather than the gunner.

DELETE: Select HE. This key physically flips the ammo select lever on the right side of the gun to HE ammo (the up position). On the BMP-2 the commander selects the ammo type rather than the gunner.

HOME: Select ATGM. This key selects ATGM for the purposes of observing how much ATGM ammunition is available, and to tell the gunner to use the ATGM, if he sees a valid target with the use of the V key to activate the launcher. Note that if the AI gunner is unaware of a valid ATGM target then the gunner will immediately flip the launcher switch back off.

SHIFT + PAGE DOWN: Reload all. Orders the tank crew to reload all weapons systems.

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Gunner's Position F6

In Steel Beasts the gunner's position is fully crew-able and fully modeled. The gunner's position is accessed by pressing F6.

From this position the user can raise and lower their perspective (and exposure level) by holding the Q key (to go up) and the Z key (to go down). The gunner can also button or unbutton (close and open the gunner's hatch) by pressing the B key (toggle). The gunner has no binocular view.


Gunner's Primary Sight (GPS) (BPK-2-42)

This gunner's primary sight (GPS) is the primary sight the gunner utilizes to engage and destroy targets with the autocanon and coax. The GPS view is accessed by pressing F2.

GPS sight view

The zoom level in the GPS is fixed at 6x magnification, it cannot be zoomed in or out.

Sight Symbology

In the GPS sight you will see a set of lines, numbers, and symbols: these are referred to as the gun sight symbology.

GPS sight, illuminated adjustable aiming reticle

The BMP-2 GPS view consists of two different reticles, primary and emergency. The primary reticle is an illuminated and adjustable reticle that is used for aiming at the target and engage the target with autocanon and coaxial MG fire under normal conditions. When the range scale is set to 0, the primary reticle is located in the center of the sight picture. This reticle consists of a large caret symbol which is flanked on either side by two vertical lines, all of which are illuminated in yellow. The upper tip of the large center caret symbol is the aiming point firing at stationary targets. The veritcal lines to either side of the large caret symbol are used as the aim point for moving targets. The height of the caret is 3 mils, and the height of the vertical lead lines is 2 mils, with a 4 mil gap between them.

GPS sight, emergency reticle

The emergency reticle consists of six black vertical lines located in the center of the sight view, and these cannot be moved or adjusted. The emergency reticle is used in situations where there is a loss of the primary reticle, such as when the vehicle suffers damage to its electrical components.

The two central blank vertical lines are used as the aim point for stationary targets, while the vertical lines to the left and right of those lines are used to help estimate lead on moving targets. The height of the emergency reticle's lines is 2.5 mils and the spacing between them is 4 mils.

For KE and HE:

  • The top tip of the top row of lines indicates the aimpoint for 800m targets
  • The bottom tip of the top row of lines indicates the aimpoint for 1200m targets
  • The top tip of the top row of lines indicates the aimpoint for 1400m targets
  • The bottom tip of the top row of lines indicates the aimpoint for 1800m KE, 1600 HE targets

For coax:

  • The top tip of the top row of lines indicates the aimpoint for 500m targets
  • The bottom tip of the top row of lines indicates the aimpoint for 1100m targets
  • The top tip of the top row of lines indicates the aimpoint for 1300m targets
  • The bottom tip of the top row of lines indicates the aimpoint for 1700m targets
GPS sight, HE and coax range scale


Similar to the commander's IP3-3 sight, the gunner's BPK-2-42 sight has a series of horizontal lines to the left and right side of the sight picture. These lines are range scales used to set the aim point for certain types of ammunition and these are also illuminated in yellow. The scales on the left of the sight is used for KE (both scales are for KE, they are staggered in to allow finer aiming in 200m increments). On the right side of the sight view, the inner scale is used for HE and the outer scale is used for coax.

Both sets of range scales has a central horizontal line that does not move when the sight is adjusted up and down. These two horizontal lines are the Index Lines, which designate the current range setting of the primary reticle, for that type of ammunition.

To adjust the aim point, press SHIFT + UP to increase the range by moving the primary reticle down the sight. Press SHIFT + DOWN to decrease range. Alternatively the mouse wheel can be used to adjust range, and holding SHIFT while doing so will increase the speed of the range adjustment.

The numbers along the range scales are in hundreds of meters (hectometers), so if you want to set the KE sight to 1200 meters then you would increase range until the index side on the KE scale is next to the "12" range line on that scale.

GPS sight, stadiametric scale

Located to the lower left of the GPS is an illuminated stadiametric scale that is used to estimate range to target. Similar to the M1 series tank, the numbers on the scale represent hundreds of meters, except that the BMP-2's scale is calibrated to a target height of 2.2m, which is roughly the height of an average PC.

When estimating range to a target, the target is placed between the long horizontal line and the dashed lines above it (the lines just below the numbers). The bottom line is placed on the bottom of the vehicle (where the tracks touch the ground) and the horizontal dash is placed at the top of the vehicle. When the target fits between both lines, it is roughly at the range specified by the numeric value above it. The gunner can then manually input the range into the gun sight and then engage the target based on the GPS primary reticle's new location.

Engaging Targets With the Autocanon

The first thing you need to do to engage a target is to acquire it. The best way to do this is by instruction from the commander or by scanning with the GPS sight itself.

Determine Range to Target

Once a target is acquired, the gunner should use the stadiametric scale to determine the range to the target. To do this, place the target inside of the stadia scale but keep in mind that the scale is calibrated to typical IFV and APC heights. Some taller vehicles (like the M60) may cause you to make an error and over estimate the target's range.

After you have estimated the target's range, adjust the range setting of the gun sight so that the index line points to the appropriate range for ammunition you are engaging with.

Firing

After you have adjusted the primary sight to the desired range, place the primary reticle on target so that the top tip of the illuminated caret is center of mass on the target. Now the gun is ready to be fired. To fire the gun press SPACEBAR or Joystick Button 1.

Rate of fire switch, high rate of fire

You can adjust the rate of fire of the autocanon between three settings: single shot, low rate of fire and high rate of fire. Low rate of fire is 200-300 rpm, while high rate of fire is 550 rpm. You may also adjust the rate of fire by clicking on the rate of fire selector switch located on the central panel between the gunner and commander.

Lead

The most important thing to realize is that the BMP-2 essentially has no fire control system per se, and so there is no way to induce lead. Lead is the term used to refer to putting a gun in front of a target which is moving perpendicular to your vantage point. When you lead a target, you essentially need to fire in front of target at the point in which the round and target will meet. Since the BMP-2 has no method of calculating lead, then the gunner must estimate and apply lead himself, and he does this with the use of the vertical lines to the left and right of the center caret on the primary sight, or the vertical lines to the left and right of the central vertical line in the emergency sight, and with a bit of skill.

Reengaging

If by some chance you miss the target, you should simply adjust fire and walk the tracers into the target. For long range targets it may be wise to estimate lead again, adjust the reticle and reengage in order to conserve ammunition.

Selecting Ammo
Ammo select switch, commander's station

On the BMP-2 the gunner has no way to select the ammo type used in the autocanon as only the commander has access to this switch. The gunner must instead request that the commander change the ammo type, and you do this by pressing INSERT for KE, and DELETE for HE. If a human occupies the commander's position then you must ask that user to change the ammo type.

Engaging With the Coaxial Machine Gun

On the BMP-2, engaging a target with machine gun is an identical procedure to engaging a target with autocanon if the target is a non-armored vehicle. However if the targets are infantry then the gunner should simply make a quick visual estimation of range, adjust the reticle, then engage with coax and walk the tracers into the target area.

IR Sight

The IR sight

Unlike most western IFVs from the 1980s and beyond, the BMP-2 has no thermal sight. This is a great disadvantage, however it does have a separate IR sight. The IR sight only barely keeps the BMP-2 from being completely blind in darkness. Although the quality of the BMP-2's IR sight is poor, it is an upgrade over the older BMP-1. Like other Soviet era vehicles, if the BMP-2 is pitted against enemy vehicles with no thermal or night vision capability then it will have an advantage, otherwise it is generally unwise to engage thermal sight equipped tanks during darkness.

  • Note that the real BMP-2 does have an IR searchlight which casts a beam of IR light across the battlefield, but currently the searchlight is not represented in Steel Beasts. On the actual vehicle, when looking through the IR sight the IR searchlight's beam essentially acts as a spot light, greatly increasing the effectiveness of the IR sight (once the IR searchlight is turned on, the sight is essentially an active IR sight at that point). However this increased effectiveness comes at a cost: once the IR searchlight is turned on the BMP-2 is greatly visible to any enemy equipped with a night vision device or a thermal sight, basically pin pointing the vehicle as a target.

Access the IR sight by pressing F3. You can also access the sight by clicking on the sight's ocular lens in the interior view.

  • The IR sight cannot be access in daylight, as the sight's lens on the turret roof is bolted shut to prevent it from being overloaded and burnt out (if you access the IR sight during daylight, the sight will appear black).
IR sight view
Engaging Targets (with the IR sight)

The IR sight's reticle is essentially a projection of the GPS' adjustable primary reticle onto the IR sight picture. This means that the position of the IR sight's reticle matches the position of the primary reticle in the primary sight.

IR sight view, enemy PC at ~300m

The peculiar thing about the BMP-2's IR sight is that the range scale is not also projected into the sight, so the gunner will have to look back into the GPS view to adjust the range, then back to the IR sight to engage the target.

  • Soviet era manuals recommend that the gunner indexes 0 or 800m into the range scale before using the IR sight, and to just keep the range set to this

Given that the BMP-2's IR sight reticle is identical to the reticle in the primary sight, the procedure to engage targets in the IR sight is exactly the same except that you have now to check for range, nor should you adjust the range. Just place the gun sight at a range you are comfortable with and walk the rounds onto the target.

ATGM Sight (9Sh119M1)

Gunner's ATGM sight

The BMP-2 is equipped with an roof mounted external ATGM launcher that fires either the AT-4 or AT-5 missile. The gunner must access a special periscope in order to use the launcher. Press F4 to access the ATGM's sight.

Engaging With the ATGM

Once in the ATGM sight view, you will have to open the ballistic door that protects the sight from damage from small arms and shrapnel. Press SHIFT + B to open the ATGM sight's ballistic door.

With the ballistic door open, the ATGM launcher must be powered up. Do this by pressing either the V key or by turning on the ATGM launcher power switch located on the central networks box.

ATGM power switch, central networks box
  • WARNING: Once you power up the ATGM launcher, the turret stabilizer will go into standby mode and you will be unable to power traverse the turret again until you turn off the ATGM launcher. This means that you should use powered traverse of the turret to point the turret towards the target, then switch on the ATGM launcher.

Now in the ATGM sight view with the ATGM launcher powered up, there will be a set of red crosshair illuminated inside the sight. These red crosshairs are used to guide the missile onto the target (ignore the red + symbol inside of the sight picture, this is used for boresighting the actual launcher). You are now ready to fire.

Firing

Fire the missile with the SPACE BAR. Once the missile launches and is in flight, you will only be able to control the missile by manually moving the launcher with the hand cranks. You can move the launcher via the hand cranks by tapping LEFT ARROW / RIGHT ARROW for azimuth movements, and UP ARROW / DOWN ARROW for vertical movements.

The missiles are SACLOS guided, so all you need to do is keep the reticle on target as best as possible and the missile should hopefully hit the target providing that there are no sudden movements.

  • CAUTION: The gunner must unbutton in order to reload the ATGM launcher. The gunner should exercise caution when reloading because he can (now) be hit by enemy fire.
  • Guiding a missile to a moving target is tricky with the use of the hand cranks (arrow keys). A tip to make this easier is to use stead taps on the keys, that is, taps at a steady and often low interval (such as one tap every 1 or .5 seconds) to keep the launcher tracking at the correct rate of speed.

Gunner's Auxiliary Sight (GAS)

Unlike western IFVs, the BMP-2 does NOT have an auxiliary sight, not even a unit sight that can be used as backup. The vehicle's auxiliary sight is the IR sight, it has no other backup daylight gun sight. When the GPS is disabled, the commander must engage targets with his primary sight although the gunner can still engage missile targets with the ATGM sight.

Gunner's Vision Blocks

Like the commander's position, the gunner has a set of vision blocks which can be used as a way to look around the vehicle. The vision blocks are located at eye level in the interior view and are accessed by first looking towards the vision block you want to look through, then by pressing N to lean forward in the direction of the mouse pointer.

Also like the commander, if the gunner looks straight up when the hatch is closed then he can see out the hatch's rear facing vision block which is a good way to quickly check the rear of the turret for threats.

Central Networks Box

BMP-2's central networks box

The box located on the turret floor between the gunner and commander is the central networks box. This box is the nerve center of the BMP-2's armament. Damage to this box will cause a failure to the vehicle's weapons systems, requiring manual fire of its weapons.

The network box is where:

1. the rate of fire of gun is changed (PAGE DOWN)
2. the ATGM launcher is turned off and on (V)
3. the center LEDs give a readout of the autocanon ammunition count
4. the central LED displays the current selected round type ("6" for KE, "0" for HE)
5. the turret exhaust fan can be toggled off and on
6. the the central networks box itself can be toggled off and on (the switch under the safety bracket)

Advanced Procedures and Peculiarities

The BMP-2 is a crude piece of machinery, and it can be a very complicated tank to use. Several status lights and switches in the gunner's station are utilized for special circumstances.

  • WARNING: Once the gunner powers up the ATGM launcher, the turret stabilizer will go into standby mode and the gunner will be unable to power traverse the turret again until the ATGM launcher is turned off. This means that power traverse of the turret should be used to point the turret towards the target, then the ATGM should be switched on in order to minimize the amount of ATGM launcher movement required.
  • CAUTION: The gunner must unbutton in order to reload the ATGM launcher. The gunner should exercise caution when reloading because he can be hit by enemy fire.
  • CAUTION: The gunner must disable the turret drive switch (the center switch on the gunner's control handles) before manual traverse can be used. If turret drive is to be activated again, then there will be a delay of some minutes before power traverse is activated as the gryos must spin up to full RPM first.


Control Handle Indicator Lights
Gunner's status lights, all lights lit except for Semiautomatic and ATGM

On the gunner's control handles:

  • 1st from the left: Stabilized traverse (if lit, stabilized traverse is available - i.e. the turret will counter rotate with hull movements)
  • 2nd from the left: Stabilized elevation (if lit, stabilized elevation is available)
  • 3rd from the left: Automatic (if lit, fast-slew traverse rate is selected)
  • 4th from the left: Semiautomatic (if lit, slow traverse rate is selected)
  • 5th from the left: ATGM (if lit, the ATGM launcher powered on)

Key listing for BMP-2 gunner's position


Weapon system commands:

V: Turn the ATGM launcher on / off. This button toggles the ATGM launcher on and off.

SHIFT + B: Open the ATGM sight's armored door. This button opens the armored door that covers the ATGM sight view

O: Toggle turret traverse speed. This button toggles the turret drive between normal traverse speed and fast slew traverse speed.

SPACE BAR: Fire autocanon or ATGM. Fires the autocanon when using the GPS and the ATGM when using the missile sight with the ATGM launcher powered up (coax uses a separate key).

SHIFT + SPACE: Manually fire the 30mm autocanon in emergency mode. Holding this key simulates the gunner either reaching over and pulling the emergency trigger, or telling the AI commander to fire the gun in emergency mode at its maximum rate of fire. For the gunner, the manual trigger is only available if in manual traverse mode (turret drive switch is turned off).

M: Fire coax. Fires the coaxial machine gun (autocanon uses a separate key).

+ (num pad): Activate IR sight. This button toggles the IR sight on and off.

INSERT: Request KE. Requests that the AI commander places the ammo select level on KE (the ammo select switch is located in his area on the right side of the gun). Note that if the commander is another user then you must verbally ask him to switch the ammo type. Also note that the AI commander may not adhere to your request if it thinks that you should be engaging it (or another target) with another type of ammo.

DELETE: Request HE. Requests that the AI commander places the ammo select level on HE (the ammo select switch is located in his area on the right side of the gun). Note that if the commander is another user then you must verbally ask him to switch the ammo type. Also note that the AI commander may not adhere to your request if it thinks that you should be engaging it (or another target) with another type of ammo.

SHIFT + UP ARROW / SHIFT + DOWN ARROW: Multipurpose. Manual adjust range in either the GPS or IR sight view. In both cases you can also hold down SHIFT with these keys to increase the speed of movement.

LEFT ARROW / RIGHT ARROW: Multipurpose. Manual traverse turret and ATGM launcher. While in GPS view, tap to traverse the turret using the manual hand crank. Manual traverse is vital when hydraulic pressure or electrical power is lost. While in ATGM sight view, tap to rotate the ATGM launcher. In both cases tap the keys quicker to traverse faster.

UP ARROW / DOWN ARROW: Multipurpose. Manual elevate gun and ATGM launcher. While in GPS view, tap to elevate the gun using the manual hand crank. Manual elevation is vital when hydraulic pressure or electrical power is lost. While in ATGM sight view, tap to elevate the ATGM launcher. In both cases tap the keys quicker to elevate faster.

Gunner's drive switch off
  • Note that to use manual traverse and elevation controls, first the turret drive must be turned off/disengaged by clicking on the center switch on the gunner's control handles. To reactivate the turret drive, turn the drive switch back on but you have to wait some time for the gyros to spin up. Once they are read, the lights will illuminate on the gunner's control handles.

Commander related commands:

T: Identified! Tells the TC that you have located a target and that you are going to engage it. Essentially it tells the AI TC to leave you alone while you engage and forbids the AI from overriding you to another target. Use at your own risk.

I: I can't see it! Tells the TC that you cannot see a target or the one he is commanding you to engage. Essentially it tells the AI TC to override you on to a target that it wants you to engage.


Driver's buttoned view

Driver related commands:

W: Driver, move out. Instructs the driver to move forward (press again for increased speed.

S: Driver, stop. Instructs the driver to stop.

X: Driver, backup. Instructs the driver to reverse.

Driver's Position F9

In Steel Beasts the driver's position is fully crew-able but partially modeled. There is a 3D view for the driver but but there are no functional switches or gauges in the driver's position. The driver's position is accessed by pressing F9. Mouse over a vision block and press the N key to lean forward to get a better view.

Currently you are unable to unbutton in the driver's position given a limitation with the vehicle's older exterior models.