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View Full Version : A little help, or my quest for success in the P-38



Priest185
07-06-2005, 08:34 AM
Having switched to playing on the WarClouds server, I must say that I've begun to derive more enjoyment from this game for the fact that I get to do more flying before being sent down in flames. It's still fun to watch enemy pilots use good tactics even when it means I'm in for a chute ride and a long walk back. But I am hoping some of those P-38 pilots out there can give me some pointers to help my performance.
Here is a few recurring scenarios that have me troubled, in as much the game as my own lack of skill.

I take off with wingman and form up as second ship. We fly to altitude, (around 10 to 15k), and start to patrol. While focusing on staying in formation, I get bounced by a BF109. So I apply full throttle and dive away into an easy right, picking up speed to about 430+ mph IAS. My concern is the fact that the 109 stays right on me. It doesn't seem to matter what I do, or what speed I fly, I have a 109 on my *ss. I have put my nose down into a steep dive and reached almost 500mph IAS, only to have my trailer stick to me like glue. I try to pull out into a right climb from speed, or try to "rope a dope" him, but he is able to stay right on me, no matter how much alt I reach. I end up stalling out, and the 109 seems unaffected.

Even though I realize I am a sub-par virtual pilot, at best, I find this disturbing for the fact that the P-38 could supposedly outspeed anything out there, especially in a dive. So if the other ship doesn't have the speed, statistically, i.e. doesn't have the E, then how is he staying with me through a high speed dive, and where does he get the E to match my climb out? Also, if I combine the above with right sided manuevers, which supposedly go against his torque, how come he isn't hindered further?

Second scenario, same as the first until alt. Spotting the enemy, we make a pass or engage, but instead of running, I try to turn fight him. I keep my speed between 250 and 300mph IAS and try to pull him into right sided manuevers. But as the fight drags on, I eventually end up bleeding off all of my E and stalling with every attempt of manuevering. By the end, with throttle to the firewall, I'm stalling whenever I even attempt to barrel roll, while my opponent is still able to pull high G manuevers with no apparent ill effect.

I re-iterate, I'm not a very good pilot, but I have been flying since RB3D. I know how to keep my E up and my AOA down. I know that in a P-38L late, I'm supposed to have some 3400hp plus at my disposal. So how come, even with E management and basic manuevering, I end up bleeding off all my E in a diving turn fight?

So, in closing. We know I suck. We know that I know I suck. So I'm asking other more successful P-38 drivers out there to give me some advice on how to survive and succeed in this game as it is. Nothing about whether the 38 is "correct" or not, or that the game is "this" or "that". The game is as it is, and I'm asking for some help in becoming better with what I have.

Thanks,

Priest

Thus endeth the sermon

Priest185
07-06-2005, 08:34 AM
Having switched to playing on the WarClouds server, I must say that I've begun to derive more enjoyment from this game for the fact that I get to do more flying before being sent down in flames. It's still fun to watch enemy pilots use good tactics even when it means I'm in for a chute ride and a long walk back. But I am hoping some of those P-38 pilots out there can give me some pointers to help my performance.
Here is a few recurring scenarios that have me troubled, in as much the game as my own lack of skill.

I take off with wingman and form up as second ship. We fly to altitude, (around 10 to 15k), and start to patrol. While focusing on staying in formation, I get bounced by a BF109. So I apply full throttle and dive away into an easy right, picking up speed to about 430+ mph IAS. My concern is the fact that the 109 stays right on me. It doesn't seem to matter what I do, or what speed I fly, I have a 109 on my *ss. I have put my nose down into a steep dive and reached almost 500mph IAS, only to have my trailer stick to me like glue. I try to pull out into a right climb from speed, or try to "rope a dope" him, but he is able to stay right on me, no matter how much alt I reach. I end up stalling out, and the 109 seems unaffected.

Even though I realize I am a sub-par virtual pilot, at best, I find this disturbing for the fact that the P-38 could supposedly outspeed anything out there, especially in a dive. So if the other ship doesn't have the speed, statistically, i.e. doesn't have the E, then how is he staying with me through a high speed dive, and where does he get the E to match my climb out? Also, if I combine the above with right sided manuevers, which supposedly go against his torque, how come he isn't hindered further?

Second scenario, same as the first until alt. Spotting the enemy, we make a pass or engage, but instead of running, I try to turn fight him. I keep my speed between 250 and 300mph IAS and try to pull him into right sided manuevers. But as the fight drags on, I eventually end up bleeding off all of my E and stalling with every attempt of manuevering. By the end, with throttle to the firewall, I'm stalling whenever I even attempt to barrel roll, while my opponent is still able to pull high G manuevers with no apparent ill effect.

I re-iterate, I'm not a very good pilot, but I have been flying since RB3D. I know how to keep my E up and my AOA down. I know that in a P-38L late, I'm supposed to have some 3400hp plus at my disposal. So how come, even with E management and basic manuevering, I end up bleeding off all my E in a diving turn fight?

So, in closing. We know I suck. We know that I know I suck. So I'm asking other more successful P-38 drivers out there to give me some advice on how to survive and succeed in this game as it is. Nothing about whether the 38 is "correct" or not, or that the game is "this" or "that". The game is as it is, and I'm asking for some help in becoming better with what I have.

Thanks,

Priest

Thus endeth the sermon

fordfan25
07-06-2005, 11:10 AM
first this game is far from perfect IMO. the dive rates and DM is complet fantasy and contrdects EVERY thing iv ever read. there is IMO no way in He!! a fighter with less of even equal power and half the dang wieght in going to stay with its target in dives the way planes like 109 and ki84's ect do in this game. also i find little deffernce between the DM on planes even like the zero or LA-7 and the hellcat. all my exp and opinion. others im sure will disagree.

now with that said. the advantege iv found with the p38 is its a little more stable in flight wich makes aiming a little easyer. other than that i cant think of a single other advantege for the 38 in this game over 109k or ki84. in some case's it may be slightly faster or be able to run at full power a bit longer but iv found it only takes a secound to be blown to tiny bits by those cannons in this game.

advice from me is stay high. try to stay with the group. most of the advanteges the US type planes had in real life is missing in this game. dive speed,durabilty,relibilty and the fact that most US fighters were never disigned for the type of fighting you see in this game online. thay were built with a deffernt purpose in mind. long range escort mostly. the german ussr and japo fighters how ever were built for short range intercept and point defence. thay were smaller lighter less fuil to have to carry ect.

bird_brain
07-06-2005, 11:22 AM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by Priest185:
While focusing on staying in formation, I get bounced by a BF109. So I apply full throttle and dive away into an easy right, picking up speed to about 430+ mph IAS. My concern is the fact that the 109 stays right on me. It doesn't seem to matter what I do, or what speed I fly, I have a 109 on my *ss. I have put my nose down into a steep dive and reached almost 500mph IAS, only to have my trailer stick to me like glue. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>
If your opponent is starting at a higher altitude and bouncing you from above, he already has a speed advantage. If you dive, you are just letting him keep it. Even in a Wildcat against a Zero, if they bounce you from above the diving advantage is lost unless you are at high altitude and the only way to loose them is a diving turn as you mentioned. The Zero's ailerons stiffened up at high speed and the Wildcat/Hellcat/Corsairs did not.
With the Lightning, your advantage comes with altitude. If they are above you, like mentioned before, you don't really have any advantages and can get in trouble pretty quick.
The only way I have found to be successful in the Lightning is to make sure you have the altitude & speed and stick to B&Z tactics.

RAF74_Poker
07-06-2005, 02:04 PM
If you're on comms with your wingie, call a thatch weave ....also, fly in a combat spread so you can watch each others 6.
Combat patrol is not the place to be trying to fly close formation.

VW-IceFire
07-06-2005, 02:52 PM
I don't have as much experience flying fighter on WarClouds but in a P-38 the best thing you can do when bounced is try and evade the bounce and then put the nose to the sky and try and gain some alt.

If you're really lucky you'll end up above him (despite his zoom back to alt) and then you can bounce him. Watch your speed, the Lightning does dive fast but very quickly into compressability.

One trick you can do is dive to compressability, the 109s controls will be heavy now, and then throttle back, deploy the combat flaps and kill your speed very quickly. He'll go shooting past and you'll at least be out of trouble for the moment. Its not a win all strategy but it can save your bacon when used at the right moment.

Stigler_9_JG52
07-06-2005, 05:46 PM
IceFire speaks the truth. The 109 cannot loop with anything from high speed. Its response pulling out of even a moderate speed dive is very slow.

But then again, P-38s had this problem up until the Js and Ls.

BSS_CUDA
07-06-2005, 09:23 PM
it really depend on what 109 your fighting, the G2 will out turn you so dont even try, the G6 you are on "fairly" equal footing with, its really a matter of pilot skill at that point, who is better, with the K just out turn it, it turns slightly better than the 190's do and with your flaps the 38 will turn inside of it, but dont try to out climb it, if you run into a 109 pilot that knows the prop pitch exploit they will be on you like white on rice, now the key to all this info is identifing which 109 your against, http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/blink.gif since most of the 109's being flown out there are G6 or later I will usually and ONLY if I have to turn fight with them and take my chances. it doesnt take long to spot the G2 and when you do just outrun it. never flat turn with any aircraft, if they get you into a turn fight always yo-yo on them, it will keep your E up and create better angles at which to get a shot off. also by keeping your wing down you maintain your vis on them better. fear NO 190 they are all inferior to the 38L-Late in every aspect except low speed roll, the Dora is as fast but not faster, but it will overheat long before you will. getting low is ok, getting slow is ok, but never get low AND slow its the kiss of death, and this goes for any plane, try to stay 300+ if possible, 10-15K is great but you cant see sh*t on the ground from that alt since the 4.0, most of us fly in the 5-10k range depending on the senario. but remember to ALWAYS watch your six its easy to get pounced at that alt if your not alert

AerialTarget
07-06-2005, 11:04 PM
Any time you are diving, you want to lower your propeller pitch. Kahuna, who is one of the Big Five of the P-38 Lightning in this place, recently taught me a few very useful things about the one in the game. Lowering propeller pitch in dives is one of them. I'm not exactly sure how much is necessary and how much is overcompensating; I am still learning it.

When rolling in a scissors, use full rudder in the direction you are rolling in. This
is a good indea in most aircraft, but in other aircraft, the difference is not as noticeable. Differential power seems to have no effect. One last thing that many people do not know about rolling the Thirty Eight is that pushing forward on the yoke speeds up the roll when you are applying full rudder. If you can't conceive of how this works, then do this experiment. Without touching the ailerons, give full rudder in one direction. Now give forward (and also try backward) yoke. Notice what happens?

I have a final word for you. Dive recovery flap! I cannot overemphasis the usefulness of this neat little tool, even in a large furball. You don't ever want to fly around with it on all of the time, unless you are behind a lone enemy who is trying to get you to overshoot. However, it helps you turn better at nearly all speeds. At high speeds, use it mostly in small bursts, or you will both black out and use up all of your energy at once. Once your speed is fairly low (as is inevitable when turn fighting in the P-38, regardless of whether or not you use the dive recovery flap), you want to stop using it to help you turn and start using flaps instead. Maneuver flaps can be used at any speed, but watch your speed when deploying them any further than that. [/b]Anytime you are turn fighting, whether with dive recovery flap, maneuver flap, both, or neither, make sure your nose is level with or below the horizon.[/b] For some reason, this requirement seems to be unique to the P-38 in the game. Try it - have a friend turn fight you in another P-38, keeping his nose level with the horizon. Try to keep tracking him, first while letting your nose rise above the horizon as in other planes, then while keeping it level or below the horizon. I learned this trick, too, from Kahuna.

I will attempt to get a good track of me turn fighting a One Oh Nine on Warclouds. Today is the first day I have consistantly been able to turn fight them. Kahuna's lesson to me a few days ago was invaluable in this. If you ever see me in Warclouds, speak to me and I will do my best to pass on the knowledge. Note, however, that while I often cannot be shaken off by even an Me-109 G-2 once I am behind him, I likewise often cannot shake off even a Focke Wulf once he is behind me.

Oh, and here's a disclaimer. Most of these tricks would not work with a real P-38 Lightning. However, the real P-38 had a lot of things which we don't have in game, that more than made up for the lack of these "gamey" tricks. For instance, the turn and roll rate was better in real life, and there were also turn and roll rate enhancing maneuvers such as the cloverleaf and usage of differential power that are not possible in the game. In addition, the pilot could place both hands on the yoke, getting over two hundred pounds of stick force, as opposed to the measly, wimpy eighty pounds modelled in the game. Then there are the deficiencies which you mentioned, as well as the climb rate, which is somewhere around sixty or seventy percent of what it really was. In short, a lot of the tricks in this post are not quite realistic, but the real P-38 could be made to do the same things and better, only with different methods which do not work in the game. As Kahuna said, "There's the real P-38, and then there's the P-38 in the game."

VF-29_Sandman
07-07-2005, 08:25 AM
perfect ur shooting skill. historically, it could put 5 guns into a 30" cone of fire that would rip apart almost anything in that cone of fire. in the game, if u are close to a fw, less than a 2 second burst of fire from all guns will rip that fw apart like it got hit with their new 151's and then some.

Priest185
07-07-2005, 10:48 AM
I am priviledged for all of your advice. I will refer to it often in the attempt to better myself.
Thanks to all who have posted, and I would be thankful still to any who have yet to post.

Cheers,

Priest