Aim Assist or Aim Assistance is the amount of slow down your crosshair will have when you hover over an enemy. Higher the ranged weapon stat is the greater aim assistance your weapon has and the more slow down you will have when you cover over an enemy.
Hidden Hand, and some scopes, sights, and barrels change aim assist.
- Reticle slow down - How much your reticle slows down when it nears a target.
- Reticle stickiness - Once your aim is on a target, how much the reticle wants to stick to or follow the target when it moves.
- Bullet magnetism - The amount that a bullet will alter its path out the end of the barrel to hit a target, even if the reticle or aim is slightly off target. The maximum deflection a bullet can take is given by the circular part of the reticle (not the crosshairs) that can be seen when ADS on Last Rites. The circle increases in diameter as the Aim Assist stat gets larger, due either to sights (SureShot), barrels (Smooth Ballistics), or perks that increase AA (Hidden Hand). Weapons with higher base AA will have larger circles than those with smaller base AA. As you fire the circle shrinks in size, so your maximum aim assist deflection degrades with sustained fire. Increasing the stability stat slows down this process and speeds up the reset to maximum deflection. Think of it like the opposite of bloom. This has a maximum distance where it is effective. Meaning at a certain distance, your bullets will no longer have their paths altered, and will instead be directed solely by the accuracy principles. Functionally, magnetism works the same way as a larger hitbox, in that it provides an area around a target that counts as a hit, even if technically the shot should miss. However, instead of the bullet passing through the empty space and registering as a hit, the bullet paths out of the barrel to the target, and can still be blocked by cover. Examples of this behavior can be seen when bullets impact a phalanx's shield, even though the player is clearly aiming at the exposed hand. Deflection can also be seen with any weapon that has a bullet trail, like Touch of Malice or Thorn.
Types of Aim Assist
Auto-Aim: It keeps your crosshair sticking on a target. Most gamers say that this leads to many fatalities, but 95% of the time, it is assisting you. You just do not notice when it is assisting you, because it is programmed to be like that all the time.
Bullet-magnetism: This is by how much the game forgives you for being slightly off-target. It leads to bullets to veer at any ever-so-slightly off-target to hit a mark at the more extreme end a hit-scan calculation. Without any bullet magnetism, your gun would have to strike the target precisely. With bullet magnetism, you just need to satisfy a minimum requirement out-put value through the game's accuracy formula.
Crosshair slow-down: This is similar to "Auto-Aim," but it is unique. Auto-Aim will trigger your crosshair to make corrections. Crosshair slow-down merely causes your crosshair to automatically slow down when you're moving over a target.