In Borderlands, character accuracy, also known (more ambiguously) as just accuracy, is a rating of how well the in-game character can handle a weapon. Internally, this is measured in the form of several metrics that start with the keyword, Accuracy.
As a general rule, when holding a weapon, the wielder will not hold the body of the weapon in a perfectly aligned fashion. When holding still, the alignment will be "pretty good". The alignment will then degrade as the player fires. This can be seen as the "Targeting Reticule" growing. This degradation has an upper bound. Once the player stops firing, the player will slowly recover.
Sighting a weapon will greatly improve the handling of a weapon: The weapon will start out better aimed (sometimes perfectly aimed, for weapons such as sniper rifles), the accuracy degradation will be much smaller, and the maximum un-alignment will be lower.
How well the player can handle a weapon is defined by the characteristics of the weapon itself.
Recoil is "the backward momentum produced in firearms when fired" (Wikipedia entry). In Borderlands recoil has 3 different effects:
- For every shot fired, the player's accuracy will be reduced a little bit.
- Every shot fired will cause the weapon to "jump around", and stray from the target.
- Under extreme situations of recoil, the weapon may climb upwards.
Sighting a weapon will also greatly reduce the effects of recoil.
Stocks (or lack thereof) also has a very large influence on recoil.
Sway is the effect of not being able to hold the weapon still while aiming. This effect is more profound if the weapon has a powerful scope. Crouching has no effect on sway.
From a mechanical point of view a playable character has something called an AccuracyPool. The lower this pool, the more accurate the character is. The AccuracyPool begins at AccuracyMin, and can grow all the way up to AccuracyMax.
Every shot fired from a weapon will increment the AccuracyPool a little. If the character stops firing for more than AccuracyIdleRegenDelay, then the AccuracyPool will start decreasing at a speed of AccuracyRegen. Sighting a weapon will improve most of these stats (AccuracyRegen will actually be reduced).
These characteristics are carried by the gun. Each weapon category will have a base value for the above fields, and they will then be modified by the parts making up the weapon, according to the Borderlands stat modifiers.
Borderlands ambiguously speaks of both weapon accuracy and character accuracy as simply "Accuracy".
- Proficiency improves character accuracy.
- Scopes have no effect on character accuracy.