This Arma highlight reel makes for a great videogame war movie

Shack Tactical is a long-standing gaming community dedicated to the Arma series of military simulators. Its founder, Dslyecxi, also maintains a YouTube channel featuring gameplay captures, tutorials, and Year in Review videos that stretch all the way back to 2012. As we noted when that very first sizzle reel went live, it's good fun even if you're not immersed in the Arma scene: "It's inspiring to watch a bunch of people invested in each others' fun and to see them express that through mods, missions, and videos they create themselves."

It's been a few years since the last Year in Review, but Dslyecxi kicked off 2021 by bringing the tradition back with a brand-new virtual war movie recapping battlefield highlights from 2018.

"The last one I did was in 2017," he explained. "They take a significant amount of time to prepare, and at that point I ran out of that sort of free time."

As for why he opted to review 2018 instead of the more recently-concluded 2020, the reason is simple: "Since it's a chronicle of the group's history I wouldn't want to skip a year (or more), and when I found the time again I went back to the next in line," he said.

Sticking with that commitment to chronicling ShackTac's adventures in the field, Dslyecxi plans to follow this up with year-end videos for 2019, 2020, and eventually 2021, although there's no set schedule at this point. 

For something a little more up to date, he also recommended a trio of relatively new videos focusing on death from above: An aerial weaponry tutorial, a guide to danger close air support, and tips on finding a good LZ when you don't really know what makes a good LZ. They're niche, but entertaining, too: The narration doesn't go heavy on technical terminology so it's easy to follow along, but they also really emphasize the depth of gameplay that the Arma series provides. This is definitely not Call of Duty.

If you're intrigued and would like to see more, you can catch up on all the ShackTac Year in Review videos in this YouTube playlist.

Andy Chalk

Andy has been gaming on PCs from the very beginning, starting as a youngster with text adventures and primitive action games on a cassette-based TRS80. From there he graduated to the glory days of Sierra Online adventures and Microprose sims, ran a local BBS, learned how to build PCs, and developed a longstanding love of RPGs, immersive sims, and shooters. He began writing videogame news in 2007 for The Escapist and somehow managed to avoid getting fired until 2014, when he joined the storied ranks of PC Gamer. He covers all aspects of the industry, from new game announcements and patch notes to legal disputes, Twitch beefs, esports, and Henry Cavill. Lots of Henry Cavill.