View Full Version : Getting Left Behind

02-28-2008, 01:46 AM
Hi All

Time once again to dig out the flying goggles and loose the chocs. I freely admit to being a perennial newbie to "IL2 Sturmovik", which is to say that I've had the simulation since it was first released and gradually bought all the add on packs one at a time.... but despite my fascination I never really got the hang of it.

Now I'm back in the air again having bought "1946" despite my objections to paying again for games I already have, so that I can fly the latest patched version with a friend of mine online and I'm pleased to say that I'm enjoying it as much as ever.

Flying online has injected new enthusiasm into me and this time around I'd really like to get a handle on the game properly. So I thought I'd turn to the experts (that'd be you folks then) with two early questions which I remember from last time that I never found the answers to.

I'm starting by flying the career path for the RAF and I've two questions flying the Hurricane, which I distinctly remember also coming across while flying "Pacific Fighters" last time around.

1/ My orders say I am to fly on the wing of ... oh I don't know... Flight Officer Biggles say. But despite carefully searching all the preflight blurb, I can find nothing which indicates which Hurricane Biggles will be flying. How do I know?

2/ I just can't keep up with the rest of my flight. Even if I run at 110% power all the time they still pull steadily away from me, in fact I generally never catch up with them after take off, only getting closer once in a while as they change course. (Of course it goes without saying that my engine soon overheats at this level.)

The gear is up and so are the flaps and in any case the Hurricane as modeled only has "raised" or "landing" settings for the flaps, so I can't really go wrong there.

I wondered if it might have something to do with "complex engine management", perhaps not switching on an intercooler or some such thing at the appropriate moment. So as I have no idea how to use this (for now) I turned it off at the difficulty settings, but to my disappointment this made no difference.

Ok that's it then, any help you can offer is very much appreciated.

All the best


02-28-2008, 01:51 AM
In single file take offs your wingman will be the one directly in front of you.

The AI are notorious for "outrunning" you on take off and climbout. I find that if I roll when my wingman does I can keep up most times. Another tip is to keep the nose down to build speed and when below the formation to pull up gradually into your slot.

Welcome back to the virtual skies.


02-28-2008, 01:58 AM
Choose Autopilot during takeoff and climbout. Once your flight is formed up and heading towards the first waypoint, you should be able to go back to manual and keep up.


Take off as normal, but every time you see them slip away, hit "A" (autopilot) and you will catch right back up. This may be a teaching tool to show you how to get more speed from your plane.

02-28-2008, 02:27 AM
Thanks for such quick replies gents. I like the auto pilot idea even though it offends my inner prop head. I'm going to show him some sexy pictures of spitfires taking off, to keep him distracted so he doesn't notice while I'm using that technique. http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_smile.gif


02-28-2008, 03:16 AM
If you really don't want to use autopilot then the only solution (apart from developing superhuman use of trim) is to select the highest rank when you start the campaign. This will put you in the lead position of the flight. A lot of the later produced campaigns specifically advise you to do this.

No doubt you know about this but be sure to check the Nugget's sticky at the top of this forum and don't hesitate to post any questions in here.

Good luck.

02-28-2008, 03:35 AM
Years ago when I played offline, I only flew a handful of missions before I went to autopilot and then even to running the game at x-speed to hurry up to the action.

I know, now the immersion police are after me. I just don't have the Silent Hunter game mentality. I have gone 100% online, except for gunnery practice in QMB.

Have fun with the sim.

02-28-2008, 04:44 AM
Originally posted by UKBadger:
I wondered if it might have something to do with "complex engine management"...

It probably has. In order to get the best out of your aircraft you really should use Complex Engine Management (CEM). Probably the most important aspect of CEM is Prop Pitch. Here is a link to an explanation of PP...

http://www.mission4today.com/index.php?name=Knowledge_B...=show&kid=249&page=2 (http://www.mission4today.com/index.php?name=Knowledge_Base&op=show&kid=249&page=2)

Prop Pitch can, for the sake of this game, be thought of as a gearbox on a car, 100% PP being equal to 1st gear and 0% PP being equal to 6th gear.

When you switch CEM on the game automatically sets PP to 100%. If you fly at 100% PP and 110% throttle your engine will soon overheat, as you have found. You need to reduce the PP, which is the same as going up the gears in a car, to keep your revs within an acceptable range.

Another thing to consider when trying to catch up to your flight is that you should not point the nose of your aircraft right at them. Instead you need to point it at a point in space AHEAD of your flight, so as to intercept them. This will force you to adopt a shallower climb angle, hence you maintain a higher speed as you make your way towards them.

If you look in your game folder, C/Prog Files/Ubi/1946 whatever, you will find a pdf file giving you info on the Hurri's supercharger settings (if it has one, I dont fly the Hurri), best climb speed and other handy info. Post back if you have any other questions as a Hurri jock is bound to chip in. Good luck.

02-28-2008, 05:45 AM

the pulling away of the team has been a gripe of mine from the beginning. I don't want to play the leadership role. I don't want to use "A".

"What the hell!! Stay on course!!" or something to that effect. It's agitated me enough that I've shotdown my leader in frustration.

I'm a little surprised Oleg hasn't fixed this, but then again, it might be a complicated issue.

BTW, if you are a wingman, you have to know the number of your partner.

Something else I could never grasp is when the leader calls out alt. I have to go use "A" to figure our what alt and heading he really wants. What he says and what he does are two different things. Fudging annoying. http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-mad.gif

Anyone else have this problem?


02-28-2008, 06:07 AM
In all frankness you may never catch up......So join the club http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-sad.gif To date after flying this sime since its release, not only AI yet live pilots routinely outrun me and I've never been able to correct it......I optimize trim, throttle, radiator, prop pitch, mix, even going so far as to hold my rudder to keep the bubble centered.

Yet to no avail......Guess i'm just a pokey puppy http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-indifferent.gif *shrugs*

02-28-2008, 06:12 AM
Only one thing has worked for me.

As soon as the mission has loaded and started, quickly start your engine and taxi out around the team. Take off and stick to the flight plan. They'll catch you. http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif

02-28-2008, 06:20 AM
Originally posted by HayateAce:
I know, now the immersion police are after me. I just don't have the Silent Hunter game mentality...

Don't be dissing Silent Hunter now. I've Kaelun Experten with two 100K plus patrols under my belt and the K.C. with Swords. LOL actually I understand totally what you mean. Sometimes you just want the get right to the "action". It's understandable if not completely "sporting".

Da Worfster

02-28-2008, 06:31 AM
Oh my.... I had that problem for about 2 weeks back at the end of 2001.

Get your nose down, build speed and use your trim properly. As of 4.0x you need to keep your
plane co-ordinated, keep the ball or slip needle centered.

Most of all build your speed up and don't climb so steeply that it drops. Check a mission out,
the speeds they fly at are in the low 300's kph, cruising speed. Just let the leader bark his
head off, soon enough you will need to throttle back to stay in formation.

What you don't want to do is get off the ground, wheels and flaps up and make a short run to
best climb speed, maybe all of 230kph in the Hurri, and then point your nose onto the last AI
ahead of you and expect to keep up. You will just end up with you nose higher and higher and
no much speed until your height forces you to put your nose down because your flight is no
longer much or any above you.

Until you can catch them before the first waypoint your time is better spent practicing flying
and learning how to be fast than doing much else.

Billfish, you have a killer reputation with the WW's... you surprise me the most!

02-28-2008, 06:53 AM
I'll tell you something maddening. I'm flying an Ostfront A-20 campaign. I'm up to the #2 slot now. It takes a bit to catch the leader and meanwhile, you have to watch out you don't collide with #3, who quickly over takes you. The maddening part is that once I do catch up, I have to cut back to 48% throttle, 90 prop pitch and COMBAT FLAPS!! or I will keep overrunning the the rest of the flight!

Also, remember this: Self-preservation. Try to fly with military precision and discipline once a fight starts or you go in on a bomb run is suicide. You have to break off and do your own thing or you will not survive. One pass and get the hell out.

One mission in Ostfront has you attacking the port at Libau. The leader goes right at the large transports into impossible AA with a swarm of 190's everywhere and Frenchies flying the Yak escorts. The Frenchies (as all AI escorts do) take off in a flock to go after one wounded 190 (not always, it just seems that way). Screwwwww that!!!! I veer off and attack a less defended target (it's a big city) and maybe make one, and only one strafing run. Then it's bug out! If I have to go 25km out over the Baltic to get away, then so be it!!

Anyway, what was your question again?

02-28-2008, 09:34 AM
All good tips above.

Those whacked-out heading and alt calls are actually radio traffic from other flights on your frequency---ignore them. If you don't want to use the ingame minimap (default "M"), make notes from the brief before you hit fly for headings and alt, if given. You can use a protracter on the brief map (careful of your monitor screen!) and note headings and distances to waypoints OR d/l and print game maps from Mission4Today, inserted in a celluloid sleeve and marked with an erasable marker to re-use OR d/l Fool Trottell's cool utility "Miss Print" to print the brief map and briefing (the easiest and best choice, IMO---I use a pilot's knee board, a small clip board with an elastic strap that clips it to your upper thigh, to hold the map).

Always know your location on the map by landmarks (towns, rivers and lakes, forests, bridges, etc.) so if you get separated from your flight during a melee, you can navigate to the next waypoint or RTB. Remember to keep an eye out for bogies while identifying your landmarks! All part of maintaining good SA. I don't get bored en route very often and enjoy the sim's graphics a lot more. Immersion!

Hope this helps and good luck!

02-29-2008, 03:07 AM
Thanks all for such helpful and interesting replies.


02-29-2008, 05:12 AM
When you start the campaign, pick a high rank so that your flight follows you, rather than the other way around.

That way you can lead the flight into a more advantageous position if you want.

Its wierd, I have never had the problem of being left behind. And I just firewall the throttle, no CEM, I never use Prop pitch.

Perhaps its just a case of learning to use gravity to your advantage? As soon as I take off and gain a little height, I dive again to pick up speed, then start to climb at a highish speed (sort of mini zoom-climb) Rather than just using the engine to gain speed, try and dive a bit first and then climb.

03-05-2008, 03:30 PM
I never have any trouble staying with AI ( in the Dgen campaign ) except in a few aircraft that have the cruise speed set too high by default, at the very edge of their top speed capability. This is exacerbated by the fact that AI don't suffer from overheats and you do. There are only a handful like that and you can go into the Dgen folder and edit either of two files called "pacificplanes.dat" or europlanes.dat to slow them down to a lower cruise speed.

Two planes I slowed down the top speed for are the early Spits Vs and the Wilcat FM2 version.

Other than those few, I can keep up easily with no modding or editing files and do so by trimming for a shallow high speed climb and not a best climb speed. Don't point your nose too high at the planes in front that you are trying to catch up to. Instead keep them high in your windscreen, maybe even so high they are out of view. I can make a track of any plane in the sim and post it to show anybody I can stay with the AI in any plane. That is if someone believes I can't.

It's a common mistake by inexperienced newcomer simmers to try and catch up by climb instead of speed. You need both but go for more speed than climb.

You do not need to do any of the following:

1). Put your plane in autopilot and let the computer AI fly your plane.

2.) Takeoff immediately behind the plane in front of you and eat his dust cloud.

3.) Make yourself flight leader so they all follow you instead.

All these common tricks are most unnecessary. Just learn to fly right by taking my advice.

03-05-2008, 04:12 PM
Talking about taking lead. i`m one of those guys who HATES taking first spot straight away in a flight. I always start at the lowest rank and work up to the highest.

Sure, the AI lead sometimes takes us into the valley of death and at times like that I have to make a decision whether to stay or bug out, but I just treat it as leadership bone-headedness.

I like to work up to it, experiencing the trials until I finally make lead eventually and that`s part of the appeal. It don`t seem right being `instant boss`

I have no problem catching or keeping with AI, although it did seem impossible in the early days when I first started.