View Full Version : Mental block

10-06-2010, 06:49 AM
~S~ all.

A small post just to say i cant get past the theory into the pracice.

thats the heading: i have played il2 since 8 years and am off and on 3 / 4 hours a day. i play mainly on SOV ( full switch ) but can play full switch as well.

Anyway to the point , have done the OJ school , printed out 500 pages of "how to fly" scissors, break, BFM, ACM but i cant seeem to convert theory into practice. my flight time consists of taking off , heading to target, get shot down.GGGRRR .. in theory i know all the moves etc but i cant seem to put it into the game, panic etc.

Question is: what do you fellow pilots do to get above the rest, my problem is i cant get theory into practice....: put what i have learnt into real flight.

LOL kinda messed up question, but when you know everything why cant you win... maybe i am not a born pilot : (. hope you all understand ..all responses welcome.help

regards Roberts

10-06-2010, 09:08 AM
always stay higher than everyone else. http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-wink.gif

10-06-2010, 10:51 AM
Well, the fighter pilots in my squad work quite hard on learing these kind of tactics and then they train to put them into practice. We have in place an advanced fighter combat training regimen which you might like.


We have pilots in the USA and in Europe so if you're interested there should be someone around at the same time as you, unless you live in Asia or Australia or somewhere!

10-06-2010, 11:13 AM
Roberts, I know your feelings ...very similar situation here ... flying for also perhaps 8 years now, doing a flight a day or every 2 days, but usually getting shot down without much of a chance http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_smile.gif

However, its getting better, slowly.

What seems to help me may sound trivial - but I needed to get out of my wishful thinking. For a long time I moved my joystick around in a manner I thought I would have to do it to achieve certain things - however the important thing was to OBSERVE what the plane was doing, and to apply just small corrections. What also helped was to fly frequently just by instruments, without looking outside, to learn how you can get really fast, find your optimal way of climbing and turning, .... also helps to learn what you really have to do, not what you think you should do...

And, I am quite sure, there is quite some people around flying not since 8, but since 15 years, and not flying 45 minutes a day, but several hours.... they will always be better ...
Learn to run and hide in time http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_smile.gif

10-06-2010, 11:15 AM
Well you say you can't put what you learned to practice, but I bet you can and already have to some extent. It's not a matter of being "good" or not. My experiences and general feeling generally mirror yours. I feel like I "know" a lot more stuff than I did when I 1st started flying but it doesn't translate into a dramatic difference I can see online...at least not all the time, but others I fly with have noticed. The main thing is this: Flying by using your head and not visceral instinct is what it's about. For me anyway, I had a really hard time breaking the habit of basically fighting in the "bank & yank" the horizontal plane style, with my lift vector always up...but now I'm doing what's "right" by thinking first, rather than what just "feels" right more and more.

10-06-2010, 11:44 AM
I would fly offline first to get used to plane handling and aiming and shooting and basic tactics like keeping your eye on an enemy plane when they are scissoring around.

When fighting humans the main thing is to catch them by surprise like attacking from below from their six or zooming in on them while they're occupied doing ground attacks or firing at another plane. You can't really do this against AI fighters because they will react to you and start maneuvering even when it would be impossible for them to see you, like when you're below them.

10-06-2010, 11:51 AM
Are you alright with "TRIM" and keeping the slipball centered I reckon this is one of the most important 'steps' in the learning ladder...I also reckon that a novice pilot is better being 'initiated' in the Boom and Zoom school than Turn and Burn .Generally stay higher and faster !

10-06-2010, 12:42 PM
my problem is i cant get theory into practice....

After a year or so of flying most of it is timing and tactical approach only plays portion of the outcome. That is to say, if you are well read on fighter tactics but haven't learned to time your maneuvers then that could be where your problem is.
The problem with full switch is that they would drop everything and resume with a yank and bank style approach. I actually see yank and bank working for a lot of people, but i get more out of the game in an energy fight so i usually stick to altitude and speed. With the exception of some of the earlier war fighters, with out altitude and speed, where does that leave you?


10-06-2010, 04:53 PM
Originally posted by Roberts_701:
my flight time consists of taking off , heading to target, get shot down.GGGRRR .. in theory i know all the moves etc but i cant seem to put it into the game, panic etc.

It sounds like you get into a rut while flying: take-off, head to target, get shot down, repeat. Make a conscious effort to try a different approach after every time you get shot down: a different plane, BnZ if you usually TnB and vice-versa, ground-pound if you usually go after air targets. Try flying very defensively one sortie: get into a Mustang, get tons of altitude and speed, and run screaming as soon as someone looks at you. Next sortie fly very aggressively: try a Zero and engage the nearest plane no matter what kind of advantage he has. Attack a squad that's obviously coordinated on coms and see how long you can survive.

The advice about practicing moves offline is also good.

One thing I did early on was take note of all my many deaths and occasional kills, sort of like a journal. After a few days I noticed a trend start to emerge in my notes after defeats; I kept making the same mistake over and over again. I focused on that one mistake and found my victory/defeat ratio improve noticeably.

10-06-2010, 06:35 PM
The thing I find most people have trouble with is not tactics (they are bad at that too) but they are often bad with handling their plane in a fight and being able to effectively shoot down another plane. I've seen people spraying away with full guns at beyond maximum range and not being effective... or getting in a bit closer but handling the plane so poorly that they don't get any shots planted on the enemy plane.

If these are the problems you're having then practice offline and get used to just flying the aircraft. Pick your speciality and make sure you know what it does on the edge. Make sure you are capable of hitting and killing the target with the first burst of fire (unless you're flying a very early war or poorly armed aircraft - sometimes simply not possible).

My practice has always been about smoothly controlling my aircraft in combat and being able to successfully plant killing shots on the enemy quickly. If I'm having a bad day of it... I'll practice in the QMB.

Tactics become useful after that... they are sort of the next stage.

Teamwork, especially in a full switch server, is essential. I once flew in a flight of 4 FW190D-9s and we were close to untouchable as a group versus single aircraft. I was the worst pilot in the group but it was the strength of the group that really made it work.

Annnnnd... if you find that you're a terrible fighter pilot. Mud moving is just as specialized and lots of fun when you get into the details (approach tactics, armament types, defeating types of targets, etc.).

10-06-2010, 07:05 PM
Also maybe try finding a group to fly co-ops with. I think these are more fun than flying in some big server with dozens of people flying around randomly looking for kills. With co-ops you have to work together and stick together and also you generally know where to go for the mission, whereas in a big room you can fly around forever wondering if there's even any enemies in your sector then suddenly someone comes out of nowhere and kills you. In co-ops either you fly against the AI or if there's enough people some can fly on the opposing side.

10-06-2010, 07:59 PM
Some guys can see better because of resolutions and settings and so on and so forth. IMO It's not just pilot skill but computer know-how. AI also for that matter can see you from behind mountains. So don't be discouraged and think you are not a good pilot. If you put Erich Hartmann or Bud Anderson, Bong or some WW2 Ace in your chair at you desk, they would most likely get shot down right away.

Seven years now for me and I have learned my limitations in this game and thats how I have learned to enjoy it.

I stay out of the ETO and fly against zekes etc in the PTO. It's more my speed and is a lot more fun. Thats what this 'game' should be about.

10-06-2010, 08:12 PM
get on TS3 or vent and get a wing man.

10-06-2010, 11:52 PM
Kill 'em All - Seek & Destroy. http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-wink.gif

You have just found out why even the best stick & rudder pilot in the world will not survive for long. You will also have to be the best hunter. No amount of gunnery and flying skill might not be able to win you a 2 vs 1. Or 1 vs 1 from disadvantage.

What you will need to learn is discipline and patience. Dont head straight into the fight: your SA is quickly compromised, and sooner than you realize, you are at disadvantage to many bad guys in the area and one of them gets a shot without you seeing him coming in. Learn to disengage: not only in trouble or situation has turned against you, but before it that happens. When you attack, have the discipline to not entangle yourself in the dogfight. See, decide, attack, break & coffee break(regain E and SA). Get a wingman, or fly someones wing. At least twoshift formations. In the long run, voice comms is essential for success and survival.

10-07-2010, 05:17 AM
Situational awareness. What you don't know will kill you, and so will the fighter you don't see. This might not help your flying, but it will definitely give you much closer to the perspective real pilots have while flying, and in that regard, it will indeed make a huge difference, if only in your enjoyment of virtual flying... especially if this "full switch" you speak of means not using external views, padlocks, etc to track your targets. There's a system called Track IR (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9wXx3vMy_AQ), that tracks your head movements, and translates them into the game. Beats the heck out of looking around with the keyboard or mouse. It's been said that this thing is second only to the joystick in essential hardware. It's on my Christmas list http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif. There should be a link in that video that has a discount that might still be active. I recommend getting the clip and a headset in addition to the tracker (approx $180 for tracker + clip), as I hate wearing hats, and we wear headsets in the real airplanes. A computer headset will run you anywhere from $50 on up. Don't have one myself yet, but with anything else, you get what you pay for. Anything under $100 is probably a cheapie, and do your research.

Marksmanship is a key factor. A short burst on target will do far more damage than a long burst sprayed all over the place from which only a few bullets hit home, maybe. Personally, I'm a terrible marksman, and it shows. As the saying goes "Nobody was ever killed by fancy flying." Keeping the ball centered is great and will result in you going faster, but if you need to kick the nose over to get your guns on target, by all means, do so. Remember that this is three dimensional. 99% of the time, you will not be shooting at where your target is right now, but rather ahead of your target, where it will be when your bullets get there.

Suggestions I was given:

1. Try QMB, setting up a flight of friendly fighters going after something like a Mosquito. Then, as they chase the Mossie around, try to shoot them down, they won't shoot back, and the Mossie will be to busy evading them.

2. Probably best after you learn to track and shoot at a target with 1., go to loading enemy aircraft with "Empty" loadouts. They'll still maneuver against you, but can't shoot you down. This is good for A. learning to shoot down a more aggressive and maneuvering target, and B. learning to evade once someone is on your tail.

There's an old saying about the guy with 10 years experience versus the guy with 1 year experience, 10 times. Follow the advice of above posters, and get in the habit of learning something from every flight, and/or trying a different approach. As with anything else, you'll never know everything there is to know about the subject, so there's always something to be learned each time you go up.

Keep in mind that the best way to get really good is to find your niche. There are so many aircraft modeled in the sim that it's tempting to try all kinds of different aircraft. That's great, but if you're interested in getting really good, find one aircraft you like, and learn it inside out, upside down, and sideways. Discover what the aircraft does well, what it doesn't do well, and fly the aircraft to it's strengths and your target's weaknesses, while staying away from your weaknesses. Example: Zero = light and maneuverable, but slow. Lightning = heavy and far less maneuverable, but fast. Result: When in a Lightning, fly above 300 knots, and do hit and run attacks; whatever you do, don't turn and kill your speed.

Finally: be smooth, a heavy hand or abrupt movement on the controls will mean loss of control. You can be quick without being abrupt.

10-07-2010, 11:19 AM
I personally am not the best by any means, but I consider myself ok and have been getting somewhat better lately and I will try to consolidate what I think has helped me the most. This subject can go on and on but I will give the humble opinion of someone who can feel your pain on being somewhat stuck in a rut.

You say you've been through Joint Ops so that's good.

First make sure you're setup in proper. You've got to make sure your joystick sensitivity curve are right for your stick and style. Make sure you comfortable with your button layouts and they compliment smooth flying.

Second you need head tracking. There are several ways to do this if you Google it. Once you have a proper working system the first couple of days or weeks you're going to want to
tweak it to what works best for you.

Next, FOV is very important. The game will let you stretch the screen for a wide monitor but it doesn't give you any more field of view. There are utilities that allow you to change the actual degree of field of view and I can pretty much guarantee you that the top guys are taking full advantage of this, so if you're not they have a 1 up on you straight away.

Trimming makes you faster. Trim surfaces create less drag then control surfaces or so I have been told, so constantly use the trim tabs you have available and you will be faster. Avoid pulling high G maneuvers and conserve your energy as much as possible for a given situation.

Get with a good community group and fly with them regularly in coops. Watch and learn. When you die go external on the best guy you know and what him. Study his way, not just his moves. Its good if once in a while someone flies the other team to give you something to challenge or even scare you.

Stay with others, don't leave the group. Stay high and fast or at least fast if you can't stay high.

Pick a plane and stick with it. If you find yourself more likely to turn and burn pick planes suited for that. I don't know all the model specks by heart but there are tools like IL2compare that can give you a good idea of how different planes stack up. Most really good player use the same plane when they can and get very knowledgeable about it. If you like Spits and usually fight 109s. Work on a good knowledge of the Spit. Then fly the 109 till you understand what it is and isn't capable of. Work on mastering your favorite plane then work on fully understanding your most common opposition.

Guns, guns, guns!!! Become a marksmen, learn what the targets look like from various angles and how much lead you need so you can save ammo and make each shot count.

Make the first shots count. When the tracers go flying over your enemies head and you don't take him out or seriously cripple his flying ability your element of surprise is gone and he will be much harder to hit from here on out. Not to mention it gives him time to call for help. The quicker you shoot him down the quicker you remove his threat and can move on to the next threat. Paranoia is good, in the words of the Danger Dogz prayer "check my five, six and seven" again and again and again. While closing on him check your 6, in the fight when you have a moment, check your 6, when he's going down in flames don't look at him, check your 6. Then climb, climb, climb. Whenever you have a little breathing room always climb but watch you don't let your speed drop to low. You need to learn at what speed you achieve your maximum climb rate. Learn how to use your prop pitch to keep your RPMs in the sweet spot and avoid unnecessary heat build up.

This is very impotent, learn how to cut corners. Don't just always turn in the horizontal plane.

Energy management is so important, but try to master slow fighting for those situations when he's right on your tail and you can't outrun him learning how to effectively fight on the edge of stall will save your behind and often present a surprise for the more inexperienced pilots and many times even the aces. Its like aikido in certain situations you can use his energy against him like when the fight has degraded to low and slow turning contest. Regardless of this never present him an easy target.

Don't fly in a straight line for more then a couple of seconds when in the fight or if don't have a wingman checking your 6. If he is booming and zooming you from up high, try and time a quick turn inside him at the last moment, if he's really screaming in on you you'll make it much harder for him to hit you though remember definitely not impossible.

Picking your fight is VERY important, probably one of the most important. DO NOT push a bad attack or disadvantaged position unless you have absolutely no other choice.

Practice snap shots. And there is no use in conserving ammo if you are dead.

Know the game. One of the biggest things that's helped me is knowing how the game treats AI and how it treats human piloted aircraft. AI do not overheat. They can see through clouds, AI do not seem to suffer control damage at the same rate as human players. Human are sneakier, more tactful, work in tightly coordinated groups and are generally more aggressive but not invincible. More times then not you will have to hit an AI more times then a human player. With AI you usually have a little time to pick the perfect shot and not waste a single bullet. With a human the priority should be on hitting him at all cost while TRYING to conserve ammo but make no mistake a dead player and half your ammo gone is better then having all your ammo and being dead. Many times if you clip a human even with a passing snapshot you will mess up his plane in some way making it harder for him to fight back. If you oil up an AIs windscreen he can see through it, if he's human he is in trouble. Make slashing attacks and try to saw him in half. When chasing in a hard deflection start firing and walk your bullet stream up through his path of travel. This really works well and I have seen most of the best players use this. Don't be afraid to jerk your stick a LITTLE to walk the bullets into him. It's not uncommon to take a 2 second burst instead of just little blips. Try to aim for vital weak points, engine, control surfaces, cockpit and where the wing meets the fuselage. Off angle shots do more damage typically but try to stay in your convergence zone.

Stalk your prey, make sudden, decisive and lethal blows. Become the hunter, the machine, the air.

P.S. You can quote me on that

10-07-2010, 12:49 PM
Be patient, relax and never head directly towards the target. Gain height and fly a round/curved course and come into the target from the side or beyond.

Keeping your speed up lessens the chance of been taken by surprise ('bounced').

10-08-2010, 02:49 AM
S! Lot of good info thanks a lot all.

Reading your posts i identifeid a lot of my problems, knowing my plane technicaly using the dials etc to get maximum performance, SA and knowing when to pick a fight when to run and being able to read the situation, as a hunter. also need to think methodicly when controling the aircraft.

Also will start choosing 1 plane master it be it BnT or ZnB then slowley move on to the next.

When i wrote full switch its full switch and yes i use the trackir, pedals, X45 and saitek levers.. when i started i went full switch, thought hey i will jump in the deep end : ).

some posters wrote that i should play more offline, which i have never done, yes it would be good practice for AOA and firing solutions, SA , yes i spray and prey : |.

Anyway thnks to all the posters a lot of good information and helps to put it all into perpective.. (Piloting = doing five different things at the same time while being chased and shot at), feel free to post more info all is welcome.

~S~ all


P.S will start looking at some of the Squadron sites and thanks for the link Tooz_69GIAP will have a look.

10-08-2010, 03:29 AM
Originally posted by Roberts_701:
P.S will start looking at some of the Squadron sites and thanks for the link Tooz_69GIAP will have a look.

Yes join a squad. If you have the basics in place, flying with good pilots on comms will quickly give your success rate and confidence a rapid and effective boost.

And its more fun.


10-11-2010, 12:01 PM
Lots of useful information here. Situation awareness and height equals speed etc are the best things to learn but it takes each person a different rate of learning. Australian Ace Clive Caldwell said to think first rather than act on instinct.
I came across a very good television series set in WW1 called Wings which highlights the early problems in learning to fly. Although set in a period before ours it is still applicable and highly recommended.
BTW why am I prevented from starting a new topic. Never had a problem before.

10-12-2010, 07:53 AM
Energy must be used correctly. On the same vein as "a live pilot with expended ammunition is better than a dead one with full belts",

1. if you have loads of speed (kinetic energy), but the enemy does too, it does you no good to stay fast and straight (relative to him) when you can use that energy to turn and get out of his "plane of motion".

What I mean by "plane of motion" is this: If he's right behind you, following you, he's in your plane of motion (his motion is almost exactly the same as yours), and this gives him an easy tracking shot. If he's 90 degrees from you, flying directly toward you, he is not in ("outside") your plane of motion, which means a much more difficult deflection shot if he wants to hit you. What I said earlier about having to shoot ahead of your target... if he's behind you, he leads you by a little; if he's 90 degrees, he has to lead by a whole lot more. The more he has to lead, the more difficult the shot.

Take note of this next paragraph, it's important. I must go back to what I said about the Lightning and elaborate. The Lightning couldn't turn relative to the Zero at low speeds (below 300 knots). Above 300 knots, however, the Zero's controls were frozen by the amount of air going over them. In this high speed state, the P-38 pilot could out turn the Zero. It was a large radius, slow, turn, but it got the P-38 out of the Zero's plane of motion because as slow a turn as it was, the Zero just couldn't match it. Under the right conditions (high speed and/or altitude), turning can be the right choice in a heavy, slow turning aircraft. Yes, you'll loose speed, but the object is to not get shot down right now. Worry about that first, and regaining lost speed second. Notice, I said high speed and/or high altitude. Turning down low is great, but you better not run out of airspeed, altitude, and ideas all at the same time. A zero energy fighter is a dead fighter, which brings me to discuss the "altitude" option.

2. Conversely to speed, is the aforementioned altitude (or potential energy). Altitude gives you the option of putting the nose over and transforming it into speed. This is a great resource, but leads to problems of it's own. The biggest one is the thin air. Couple this with the relatively low kinetic energy states of aircraft that have just completed the climb up to altitude (forward speed has been traded for vertical speed in the climb) and you simply can not yank the aircraft around like you could at low altitude; you'll stall, and fall out of the fight. As stated before, a zero energy fighter is a dead fighter, regardless of altitude. You'll have enemies all over you before you can recover, they having picked up speed and maneuvering capability in the dive. By the way, it's altitude's conversion into speed that makes it so important to have the altitude advantage in a fight. Altitude in and of itself gives you very little. Don't try a tight turn at altitude, you'll stall out unless you have speed. Speed is key.

As with aircraft designed for turning, like the Zero, and energy aircraft, like the P-38, there are fighters that were made to fight up high, and some that weren't. Altitude is a great advantage, but if you're wallowing around at low speeds, someone's going to jump you and shoot you down. Better in some aircraft to stay lower, where you have the ability to yank it around and time your turn right. When someone dives on you, he picks up an awful lot of kinetic energy (speed), which reduces his maneuverability. Time your turn right, and you, at a lower speed, can turn out of his guns' line of fire, and it will be impossible for him to follow you.

Something I learned from Jane's Fighters Anthology in 1998: All aircraft have a speed, called "cornering speed" which is the best ratio of forward speed and turning ability. Above this speed, you're better off using the hit and run "boom and zoom" tactics, below, you're better off out turning him. IL2 aircraft don't have the nice carat on the Heads Up Display (HUD) to tell you exactly what this speed is (it changes with altitude), but the general principle applies.

10-12-2010, 01:37 PM
Good info all, thanks PhantomKira,

i have been putting into practice all your theorys and it seems to be working out better.. even if i am not the most skilled i am staying up longer and am evaluating the situation better http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_smile.gif http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_wink.gif

still need to practice and will 3/4 hrs a day

for the new pilots "stick with it' its hard but well worth the rewards".

Now i have to work on the Lead gunnery, firing solutions via the sights mathematicaly. did the GS command in SOV and came up with 12000 fired 300 hit...lol..spray and pray , got to try the dolphin dive and bunny hop. : )

Thanks all for the info and more is welcome.

Regards roberts.

P.S should take the best posts and turn this into a sticky.

10-12-2010, 05:37 PM
Progress! Yay! http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/partyhat.gif That's what we're after.

Interesting that you should mention "firing solutions via the sights mathematically". I recently read a book by a P-40 ace in the southwest Pacific who pointed out just that: The rings on your gun sight are there for a reason, use them. They are in Mils (6400 Mils = 360 degrees), but I'm not 100% on how to use them. He wasn't either, missed a lot, got mad, hit the books, and started scoring kills almost immediately. I'll have to look up the name of that book for you.

What's the GS command in SOV? What's SOV for that matter?

10-15-2010, 07:17 AM

SOV is Skies of Valour server, i use it for practice but do not use the padlock etc.. just use outside view sometimes. http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_rolleyes.gif yeah bad habit.

GS is gunstats command..<GS in chat.


10-15-2010, 10:45 AM
Originally posted by PhantomKira:
Interesting that you should mention "firing solutions via the sights mathematically". I recently read a book by a P-40 ace in the southwest Pacific who pointed out just that: The rings on your gun sight are there for a reason, use them.

I don't think there is a set formula, but i think with practice the rings help gauge range and deflection. Probably depends on the plane or gunsite your using. Are there any planes with sites that specific to range or deflection?
I've read encounter reports that describe "pulling 3 rings of deflection" or similar descriptions but that sort of thinking doesn't always translate to the game. Usually i point, or lead my shot and shoot, hoping to get hits.

There are few ways to practice shots at higher speeds.
What helped me was using the QMB and assigning 4 friendlies chasing a tough enemy plane like a Blenheim.
You can shoot at the friendly targets as they chase the Blenheim, which i think is a bit more challenging than hitting a formation and it better simulates a fight where you are chasing a plane.

I've also set up practice missions in the FMB where my plane dives from a 10,000ft advantage onto a slower target that uses a break turn to avoid the shot. Its a good way to learn angles and to test different ranges and maneuvers while on an attack.

10-15-2010, 01:22 PM
How much lead I pull depends on the range of the shot, the deflection angle, my closing speed and motion of the target relative to my pipper just for starts. The less I am sure, the more 'ahead' I start shooting and the longer my burst, or I make a short ranging burst just to see and follow up or not depending on how that turns out.

10-15-2010, 11:16 PM
In My Sights (http://www.amazon.com/My-Sights-Memoir-P-40-Ace/dp/089141634X) by James Morehead. A good read, I definitely recommend it.

Thanks for the info. Now it makes sense.

I use the external padlock all the time, but then I don't have Track IR - yet. You can bet that as soon as I do, the full realism goes on and stays on. It'll be a difficult habit to break though. A bit like "Wonder Woman" users, I suspect. Never could do that myself. Flying around without a cockpit! Ugh. Never could use the mouse to look around, either.

Sounds like Bill's the person I got the "chase the flies on the donkey around" idea from...

10-19-2010, 07:58 AM
Reading through more of these post brought a few things to mind. BillSwagger, check out the reticle on the P-38. It's have about 4 or 5 sets of ring markers that I find it to be very nice for gauging off angle shots and it seems well though out.

Setting up scenarios with the quick mission builder is great for practicing specific tactics.

If you want an even better QMB check out Mission Mate in the download area over at the Mission4Today website. There is a bit of a learning curve but it allows much more flexibility in your missions.

One thing I like to do is make a mission that puts me at an almost impossible disadvantage such as 4 aces or veteran pilots in superior fights with an altitude advantage attacking from behind. You'll get shot down a lot but over time your survivability will increase and you may start finding yourself turning the odds and come out victorious. All to be taken with a grain of salt as these are AI of course but if you constantly train for the worst case scenario when you get bounce from a high in a dogfight or coop your response will be more instinctive and you'll have the muscle memory for a perfect execution of that response.

Oh and once you get your lead gunnery tuned better attacking some AI bombers, change them to aces and try the same moves under pressure. One of the ways I practiced boom and zoom and gunnery was making a mission that set 8 veteran 190s (my team) against 8 ace B-17s. Don't forget to set your ammo unlimited. Try hitting them from the side in boom and zoom passes. I find strafing across the top of their wings from tip to tip to be very effective to taking out engines and breaking their wings off. Its a tough shot to line up but they will have a hard time hitting you. The other thing that works well, besides head on, is starting very high behind a bomber and getting very close to his position before you start your very high speed, high angle dive. I get extremely close to hitting their tails or wings on the dive down but you blaze past the gunners so fast it's very hard for them to hit you. You can do this attacking from the side as well. Once you've zoomed down past them zoom back up the same way. You can repeat this over and over and just keep yo yo ing them. Your high deflection shots will do lots of damage.

And get a Microsoft Force Feedback 2. The best 32 bucks I every spent on a joystick.

10-19-2010, 10:23 AM
Originally posted by rfxcasey:
BillSwagger, check out the reticle on the P-38. It's have about 4 or 5 sets of ring markers that I find it to be very nice for gauging off angle shots and it seems well though out.

Thats not a bad reticle but i don't think there is much to the rings as far as being able to accurately shoot deflection every time. Not to dive into the topic of mods, but i was able to make a custom reticle based on my own convergence settings. The most effective feature about it is that its a lot dimmer so that i can actually see the tracers and gauge shots from further away. Other than that, it just takes a bit of practice.