Armed Assault Wiki

NV Goggles (full name: Night Vision Goggles) are optoelectronic devices.


CSAT soldier with night vision activated.

NVGs are head-worn devices designed to intensify existing light. Throughout the series, NVGs have always represented a quintessential technological advantage for any modern army against low-tech enemies.

While night vision is activated, it is possible to see the lasers beams projected by weapon-mounted laser pointers. Likewise, it is also possible to spot the periodic blinking emitted by infrared strobes.

The main downside to NVGs stems from the limited field of view while they remain activated, even if they are of a non-monocular design. Notable exceptions include helmets worn by fixed-wing jet pilots in ArmA 3, as well as any panoramic vision helmets worn by some special operations units.

ArmA: Cold War Assault

ArmA: Cold War Assault-era NVG.

In Cold War Assault, NVGs are seldom available and are only issued to U.S./Soviet vehicle crews and specific special operations units.

They offer a significant advantage over conventional grenade launcher flares as only the wearer will not risk exposing themselves (unless the opposing side also retains access to NVGs).

ArmA: Armed Assault

ArmA: Armed Assault-era NVG.

« Night vision goggles are intended for observation and terrain orientation at night. They work by intensifying the already available light in conditions of low illumination, using, for instance, light from the moon or the stars.
Library Description

In Armed Assault, NVGs are mostly used by U.S. Army soldiers. Some SLA troops and Especas SOF do have access to them, but are otherwise solely the domain of U.S. forces.

Functionally, they remain identical to their Cold War Assault predecessors and restrict the wearer's field of view upon activation. As before, they provide the same advantages over UGL-fired flares.

ArmA 2

ArmA 2-era NVG.

« Night vision goggles are intended for observation and terrain orientation at night. They work by intensifying the already available light in conditions of low illumination using, for instance, light from the moon or the stars.
Armoury Description

In ArmA 2, NVGs are more commonly available and are utilised by all Western BLUFOR factions aside from specific non-combat/support troops.

However, aside from Russian officers, team/squad leaders, and Spetsnaz operatives, most REDFOR factions (including Takistani troops) do not have access to NVGs. For most troops, they continue to rely on flares or night vision scopes mounted on certain weapon platforms.

NVGs will now allow the user to see the flashes emitted by infrared strobes. The blinking from IR Marker Strobes can be seen from afar while IR Targeting Strobes can be "detected" by NVG-wearing infantry. Pilots flying aircraft armed with laser-guided bombs can also lock onto the latter; provided that they are within range of the strobe.

ArmA 3

ArmA 3-era basic NVG.

CTRG ENVG-II (left) and Pacific CSAT Compact NVG (right).

« To use night vision, you need to have night vision optics mounted on a weapon, helmet or vehicle. Use IR flares and laser pointers to mark objects and locations when using night vision. They will remain unseen by the enemy but soldiers with night vision will be able to see them clearly.
Field Manual

Unlike previous games in the series, NVGs are utilised by all factions with the exception of a few non-state actor groups throughout ArmA 3.

ArmA 3 is the first game in the series to feature multiple NVG variants rather a single universal model. Conventional NATO, AAF and LDF infantry for instance, wear basic binocular-type goggles available in four camouflage schemes: a desert sand, black, forest green and tropical camouflage.

On the other hand, both Mediterranean/Pacific CSAT forces and Russian Spetnsnaz operatives utilise the Compact NVG, though it is essentially identical to its basic counterpart in all but appearance. Likewise, it is available in four varieties: Arid, Urban and Tropic Hexacam, as well as a flat dark green.

Fixed-wing aircrews and pilots retain access to helmets with integrated night vision capability. Unlike their externally-worn counterparts, the helmets provide a full unobstructed field-of-view upon activation.

Some of NATO's elite special operations units prefer to utilise ENVG-II multi-vision goggles. One major difference to standard-issue NVGs is that they allow the user to switch between a night or black-/white-hot thermal vision mode. This also applies to CSAT SOF, though they wear ballistic-resistant helmets which offer the same multi-vision capability directly integrated into the helmet itself.

ARMA Reforger

ARMA Reforger currently does not feature NVGs.



  • NVGs in Cold War Assault are based on the real-world "PVS-5A" night vision goggle.
    • They are strangely used by all sides, including with Soviet forces. This is completely unrealistic however, as it would have made more sense for Soviet troops to be depicted using NVGs manufactured by Eastern bloc countries (such as the Czech/Polish-made "PNW-57").
  • The NVGs in Armed Assault and ArmA 2 are directly based on the American-made "PVS-7B". As with NVGs in Cold War Assault, it is universally shared by all sides - including with Russian military forces.
    • This is highly unrealistic as the Russian military (at the time of Armed Assault's release) mostly utilised Soviet-era weapon/handheld night vision-enabled optics and binoculars such as the "BN-3" (GRAU index code: 1PN93) or very rarely, the "PNV-10T" head-worn NVG.
    • In addition, the PVS-7B was already phased out of service within the U.S. military in that same time period (2006-2012) and was only delegated to non-frontline units. Both American and British forces operating in Iraq/Afghanistan had already transitioned to the newer "PVS-14" monocular NVG (alternately known as the "HMNVS" in British service).
  • The baseline NVG model shared by NATO, Mediterranean CSAT, as well as the AAF/LDF in ArmA 3, is loosely based on the real "PVS-15" binocular NVG in use with the U.S. military and several Western armies.
    • Pacific CSAT troops on the other hand utilise a completely fictional design that seems to be inspired by the real-world "PVS-21" low profile NVG.
    • The ENVG-IIs used by CTRG operatives are also fictional, though it seems to be heavily inspired by concept artwork created by Alex Jessup.

External links

See also

Non-lethal BinocularsChemlightsCompassFlaresFlashlightsGPSInfrared StrobesLaser DesignatorMine DetectorNight Vision GogglesRadiosRangefindersSmoke GrenadesSpectrum DeviceToolkitUAV TerminalWatch
Lethal ExplosivesHand GrenadesLandminesUnderbarrel grenade launcher (Cold War Assault, Armed Assault, ArmA 2, ArmA 3, Reforger)
Medical BandageFirst Aid KitMedikit