My Gadget Life – Andy McNab

The shadowy ex-SAS writer talks Battlefield 3 and military tech

There’s a lot of tech in the regiment

Everyone’s got a laptop and a smartphone. They all want Powermonkeys because their batteries keep dying. You can easily rig an iPhone up to the internal communications system of a Warrior tank.

But you can never completely rely on tech

In the military, you have to know what to do when your kit goes down. The Special Forces are often beyond the FEBA (Forward Edge of the Battle Area), so there’s nobody to help if your sat-nav stops working. You need to be able to read a map or use astronavigation.

Modern military tech is astonishing

An unmanned aerial vehicle can show you what’s on the ground in a 10-metre square. It might take off in Afghanistan and then get handed over to the control centre in Nevada. Those guys will then fly the mission before handing it back to the team on the ground.

The sound in Battlefield 3 is incredible

The guys at DICE had a huge catalogue of gunshots that they’d recorded. I’d listen to them and combine different bits to make sure it sounded right for the in-game environment. I also had to ensure the dialogue was accurate, the environments were correct and the characters handled their weapons properly.

I’m also into surfing, boarding and biking

I’m starting to sound like a cliché now, aren’t I? I’ve got a six-foot, three-fin surfboard, a Burton snowboard and a BMW GS1200 bike. I’ve even got a Bluetooth helmet for phone calls on a ride.

You may also like

More My Gadget Life on

Battlefield 3 Review and Video

25 best war movies