View Full Version : Gunnery Skills (Non Pilot)

04-22-2010, 10:45 AM
I want to start by saying that the complexities of simply flying an aircraft, combined with the skill requirements to survive aerial combat are substantial, and impressive. Accomplishments in this area are highly respectable, and the main focus of this sim, as they should be.

That said, I've found the mastery of gunnery (in non-pilot roles) to be extremely challenging. In most combat situations, my line of sight and firing range is not a prime concern for the pilot, and often the defensive maneuvers employed make scoring a hit on an enemy unlikely, especially when my ability to sight my target is hampered when firing at targets off to either side. Deflection characteristics change depending on airspeed, angle of attack and angle to target, so estimating where the rounds will end up is more art than science. Add to the mix the urgency to fire before being fired upon, and many of your shots are fired from longer range.

I wanted to get a feel for everyone's interest in this aspect of the sim. Do many or any of you enjoy gunnery outside of the pilot's seat, and what pointers would you give for the role?

Additionally, do any of you have a gunnery story you'd like to share? Screenshots? Video?

Take care!

04-22-2010, 01:47 PM
AFAIR in WW2 there was good comms (and co-ordination) between pilot and gunners. This made it 'easier' for the gunners.

But in IL2 when you have no control/comms over your pilot, combined with a very jerky gun.. it's near impossible to hit anything, unless it's 'in your face'

04-22-2010, 02:14 PM
I sometimes gun for my friend while he flies and we do utilize strong vocal communication. I'll tell him to make a soft turn to the left, climb, etc. That can all fall apart pretty quickly though if we get hit a number of times. If I can't make a successful hit quickly, we opt to try to outmaneuver the enemy. It is difficult, and I get quite a kick out of it. I usually double as navigator too in that I often have my map open when we're not in trouble, and relay our whereabouts to him regularly. Unfortunately, I can't monitor the enemy's radio transmissions from the back seat. That would be helpful.

04-22-2010, 02:23 PM
I find I can only 'gun' while using level flight stabiliser...Try fighting against Hurricane Mk1s in the He111 H2 online ....The upper rear gun in that baby can take out loads of Hurris .Engine will howl in agony with a single hit ...Even dewinged them on more than one occasion!!!Hardly realistic but fun!

04-22-2010, 04:41 PM
I fly bombers a lot, and I have had lots of practice in the rear seats. It can be very tricky, but seeing an enemy light up from your defensive fire is very satisfying!

04-22-2010, 06:05 PM
I make use of the gunners but i also have trouble steadying the gun, so what seemed to work for me was lowering the mouse sensitivity.

I've noticed a few gunsites don't line up on the intended path, so it takes some getting use to. There is no way around that, you just need to practice.

I've seen tactics that work against me when flying as a fighter, and one of them is to just wait until the fighter is closer. The habit of the AI and some players is to start shooting too early and the tracer fire allows the fighter to traverse around. However, the guy that can withhold firing, and shows a bit of restraint usually can put a good burst into the fighter because they get over confident or relax in their efforts.

04-23-2010, 12:22 AM
I do not consider myself as any sort of expert gunner but I am able to shoot down an enemy fighter now and then, what I do is i use Level Stabilizer and then concentrate about the aiming of the gun.

If the enemy is good and make proper slashing attacks, diving attacks or attacks from somewhere head on I wont stand a chance and in that case its better to do evasive maneuvers which I then do. but if they line up behind me as most rookie and average pilots do its quite possible to shoot them down before they kill you.

the key is to start firing as soon as he is within reasonable range which allows for hits.

the American bombers with twin 50 cal. machine guns are particularly mean.

04-23-2010, 06:31 PM
Gunnery skills is something I've tried to get good at because I think that after piloting this is definitely the most complicated thing you can try to do. After a while most people are good at it but few truly master it. I'm not anywhere close to mastering but I'm getting there.

My goal is to hit with the first bullet if I can or if not then hit very soon thereafter.

When it comes to bomber gunnery it can be both easy and more difficult. If you're also piloting the bomber then it can be made easier in that you know how much you need to maneuver the plane to get a shot off. You're also firing into the front of the aircraft where the more vulnerable bits are like the pilot and engine are. On the other hand deflection I feel is quite a bit harder here... so I try and sucker the guys in for the dead 6 shot. When they are much smarter than that... then there is not much you can often do.

I think the best thing you can do is to keep practicing and in the heat of combat fire bursts, check your tracers and then adjust and fire more bursts. Sometimes blaring away with the guns makes you feel better but makes your shots less accurate.

04-23-2010, 07:24 PM
Hey Tom, are you still doing that Afrika campaign? I kind of lost track of you guys after a while.

04-23-2010, 07:53 PM
Originally posted by Ba5tard5word:
Hey Tom, are you still doing that Afrika campaign? I kind of lost track of you guys after a while.

Hey man! We both got really busy there. We might get to playing some more some time soon here. I'm pretty excited about the 4.10 patch! I'll keep you posted!

04-27-2010, 03:29 PM
Ok sounds good. I've been using the Ultrapack 2.0 mods which I really like, you might want to check it out if your system can handle them.