You’re still not first principles enough, you’re focusing on the goal of halting fire before you start missing the target, what I’m concerned with are the mechanical limits of the trigger pull. i.e. if you tell a novice, “fire a short burst” or, “pull the trigger and release as fast as you can”, what’s the result? Then repeat that process with an expert, how does the outcome change?
Mechanical limitations and the semantics of what constitutes a “short burst” to a novice are two unrelated things. If you’re referring to the operation of the firing mechanism itself and the physical ability of the shooter to operate the trigger, there is nothing preventing you from flicking a firearm onto full auto and then firing as few as two or even one round at a time. Though this becomes more challenging with firearms having very high cyclic rates (MAC-10 for example)
“pull the trigger and release as fast as you can” - again, this is a semantic thing and is going to depend on which novice is using the weapon. If one interprets this as meaning to give the trigger a rapid yank and release, you’ll probably end up with a one or two round burst, no different from what a proficient shooter can do intentionally. If a more hesitant novice squeezes the trigger slowly until the weapon fires, then only releases the trigger once their brain has caught up and realizes the weapon is firing, then of course you’re going to get a much longer burst.
Specifically, if we’re talking about halting fire once some recoil limit has been reached, the shooter has very little information about what level of recoil they’re dealing with from instant to instant, and things are happening way to fast to act on that kind of feedback. The goal here is to represent the habit of firing in short bursts, and how it improves with training.
Kind of like how I pointed out previously, firing in short bursts is not a habit that arises simply out of better muscle memory or motor skills (though that is a factor) - it is done as opposed to “spraying and praying” specifically because it more reliably puts rounds on target. It is a goal-driven habit by definition. And the length of the burst is going to be determined primarily by how well the shooter feels they can control the weapon, not by how quickly they can pull and release the trigger. Which is why I think referring to the mechanical limits of the weapon (which are mostly a non-factor as it is very possible to fire single rounds even on full-auto), or “what would a novice do if you told them to pull the trigger and release” are not very relevant ways of going about modeling this.
If you tell a novice to “pull and release the trigger as fast as you can”, you might get one of the scenarios I described above. If you tell a novice “there’s a zombie coming at you, and you need to kill it before it reaches you”, it’s anybody’s guess how many rounds they would fire off.
My suggestion of halting fire when recoil accumulates too much was only a suggestion of how to approximately model this phenomenon in the confines of the game’s shooting formulas (assuming I understand them correctly). Of course no shooter is actually tabulating bullet dispersion in their head while they’re pulling the trigger. I simply figured that tying the number of rounds fired to how much recoil has accumulated (and having this be a lower number for experienced shooters versus novice ones) might be a more accurate representation of what determines burst length than a guesstimated and over-generalized “0.3 seconds worth of trigger pull”. Having this cutoff be sooner for a proficient shooter reflects their better experience, feel, and intuition.
I should add the disclaimer that all this is from a hands-off enthusiast’s perspective - it’d be great if anybody else on the forums who has actual experience with automatic weapons could chime in on the subject…