Multicam — camouflage revolution

The MULTICAM pattern (for cartoons) was developed by the American company Crye Precision in tandem with

«U.S. Army Soldier Systems Center ”, also known as the U.S Army Natick labs laboratory.

The development of camouflage took more than eight years of expeditions, scientific work, systematization of the data and practical (field) tests.

This pattern was created as a single universal camouflage for the US Army. The leadership of the armed forces began to think about creating a new camouflage after Operation Desert Storm in Iraq.

The camouflage patterns used at that time for Woodland and for the desert (3-Color Desert) did not provide the necessary disguise for soldiers.

Each operation still required special camouflage, which hampered the work of the supply services and reduced the security of the fighters.

Even with the start of hostilities in Afghanistan and the new company in Iraq, after the introduction of universal digital camouflage (UCP — Universal Camouflage Pattern), the situation has not fundamentally changed.

Obviously, a new uniform universal pattern was needed, which allows hiding soldiers in any terrain and at any distance from observation.

The new camouflage should equally well mask military personnel against the background of vegetation, and against the background of desert or rocky terrain.

Equally well to hide against the backdrop of urban buildings and ruins, and under different light conditions. In any climatic zone and in any season of the year.

How does cartoons

The task of creating such camouflage seemed daunting. But in developing it was possible to apply innovative solutions.

The developers used the weaknesses of a person’s vision and the imperfect design of the eye. In order for camouflage to mask over a long distance, it must consist of large blurry spots.

Close to it, especially against the background of foliage and vegetation, when the human eye sees fine details especially clearly, the drawing should contain many small rounded elements of the prevailing terrain background.

The creators found out that the prevailing background in almost all regions of the planet is similar in color tones.

These are mainly gradients of green and brown colors. The discovery was that in nature there is practically no black, although it is massively used in camouflage in many countries of the world.

Having systematized the obtained data, and having conducted a digital simulation with overlapping over a thousand layers of images, we obtained a picture, now known as “MULTICAM”.

Accepts shades of the surrounding area

The pattern is intended to reflect some of the colors of the environment. It incorporates the general green color when the background is a green forest or a general view of small folds of the terrain and shallow vegetation when the background is desert.

It adapts to various local lighting conditions, it is well combined in many environments, seasons, weather conditions and times of day.

Masks volume and shape

Multicam uses the ability of the human eye and brain to perceive volume, shape, and color.

Only a small part of the human eye perceives colors, the rest of the color picture is modified by the brain. Designed by MultiCam ® using this principle, it is seen by the observer as part of the background.

The object visually «loses» its shape. The observer may see something, but the eye does not identify him as something separate, distinguishable from the terrain, in order to stop his attention.


1) The resulting pattern, unlike most others, does not have black spots. It is natural and natural.

2) The pattern combines spots of different sizes. Some mask at long distances, others in the near. Some hide on a green background, others on a brown one.

3) Unlike other camouflage, which consist of a set of spots with a clearly defined shape, with the number of colors from two to five, the drawing of cartoons has a set of clear spots of a certain color, with spots in which the colors smoothly change from one to another.

Starting to recalculate colors, you can easily count six or even seven shades, without understanding whether it is all or not.

4) The picture has white spots, which allows the camouflage to work both on a snowy background and in summer against a background of wildflowers.

5) The combination of shades allows to overcome the so-called “sunset effect”, when in the rays of the setting sun the terrain acquires reddish shades and most of the modern camouflage loses their camouflage properties, and the soldier in camouflage becomes a gray shadow.

Despite all the innovativeness of the ideas used in creating universal camouflage, in the competition for the new camouflage for the US Army «MULTICAM» gave way to the universal coloring «DIGITAL ACUPAT».

In spite of this, many of the design elements of equipment offered in this program can be found in the new field uniform of the US Army, and equipment and equipment in the “MULTICAM” colors have become available not only from Crye Precision, but also from other famous manufacturers.

At the moment, the «MULTICAM» pattern is not officially in the arsenal of the American army, but is already used by the military and operatives of various services in many countries of the world.

Cartoons are used by special forces, and anti-terrorist units, and security personnel in various parts of the world.