The ZU-23-2 is featured in both Battlefield: Bad Company and Battlefield: Bad Company 2 as an ant-air emplacement for both sides in the former and for the Russian Army in the latter, as well as on top of the BMD-3 AA in both games.
Battlefield: Bad CompanyEdit
The ZU-23-2 appears in both singleplayer and multiplayer mode of Battlefield: Bad Company. It is the only usable anti-aircraft cannon in both singleplayer and multiplayer mode of the game, as there is no American counterpart of the emplacement. Although the VADS does make a physical appearance in game being mounted on the Mark V Patrol Boat and as a static emplacement in Ghost Town, it is never available to the player.
In singleplayer, its first appearance is in Welcome to Bad Company, where the player needs to destroy 3 of them to clear a path for friendly aircraft operating in the area. Its second appearance is in Crossing Over, as there are many of them in that mission, and they are very useful when the player has to take out a Mi-24 SuperHind that appears later in the mission. Its final appearance is in Air Force One, where they are mounted on modified BMD-3s as SPAAAs.
Just like singleplayer, it is the only AA emplacement in multiplayer. The ZU-23-2 appears on the following multiplayer maps:
ConquestEditattack helicopters, making short work of pilots who stray near one without taking it out. The weapon is also very good at destroying cover as its explosive 23mm shells easily rip through trees, buildings, fences, and all kind of destructible entities. The cannons themselves also take a lot of time to overheat, much more so compared to other emplacements in the game, allowing the player to rain shells down an area for a long period, effectively denying some movement at that area, and its good rate of fire further commends its destructive power. Despite having such destructive shells, the emplacement is balanced against infantry and tanks, doing very little damage against either, direct impact or not. It also has a bad accuracy, especially when used against small targets like distant infantry or even vehicles, where the chance of scoring direct hits on the target is generally a matter of luck. The gun is usually located in an open area such as on a high rooftop or an open field, making them easy targets for snipers, engineers, and tanks since they can easily take out the operator or the entire emplacement.
Battlefield: Bad Company 2Edit
— In-game description
In Battlefield: Bad Company 2's singleplayer, the ZU-23-2 makes a few brief appearances during Heavy Metal, where they are on BMD-3 AAs during the UAV-1 segment, and in High Value Target, where the Marine HMMWV convoy gets pinned down by a "Zeus" (as the Marines call it), destroying all the HMMWVs and killing many Marines.
In multiplayer, the ZU-23-2 (simply Anti-Air Gun in-game) is a stationary anti-air gun. Unlike in Battlefield: Bad Company, the ZU-23-2 is not automatic but instead burst fires. It is also mounted on the BMD-3 Bakhcha AA in maps like Port Valdez. It can be effective against infantry and especially aerial targets. An operator should lead their target, depending on the speed of the helicopter. The ZU-23-2 fires in very powerful bursts and this can be used as an advantage. A direct hit on any helicopter will result in the helicopter losing control mid-flight for a brief moment and allows the gunner to finish it off. One full burst is enough to kill an enemy player and can be deadly if used by a good operator. However, the operator is susceptible to enemy fire as the anti-air gun does not provide adequate protection.
- If a player is using the ZU-23-2 or the VADS, they can be launched a considerable distance if a headshot is achieved on them.