Until now I have been silent about planes. It’s time to remedy this situation! This week I’ll go over the basics of flying, and show you the advantages of dive bombing. I recommend playing this classic Iron Maiden song while reading what follows.
Fighter squadrons can cause tank crews some serious headaches. Their speed and maneuverability allows them to strike almost without warning and escape before the enemy has time to react. The obvious trade-off is limited weapon capacity: two bombs for the Lockheed P-38 Lightning, one single bomb for the Messerschmitt Bf 109, which makes up for this difference by being faster and more agile than the P-38. But let’s not get ahead of ourselves. First, we’ll look at the controls.
One important concept to understand about flying is that airplanes don’t simply “turn”. They yaw and roll. Both types of movement will make the aircraft go left and right, but rolling will accomplish this much faster than yawing… at the cost of also tilting the horizon. Oh wait — it’s not the horizon, it’s you who’s tilting. If you’re like me, not as experienced with flight simulators as you are with first-person shooters, you’ll catch yourself involuntarily tilting your head to compensate. This can be a problem when aiming for a ground target. Fortunately, holding down the Shift key will take care of aligning your wings with the horizon line again! Try doing this before you drop bombs. Aiming becomes much easier! Auto-leveling is also extremely helpful when landing: first decrease your speed using the S key, then level your plane with Shift. Then simply avoid trees. Et voilà!
|Mouse||Roll / Pitch|
|Left Mouse Button||Machine Gun|
|Right Mouse Button (Hold)||3rd-Person Camera|
|Space Bar||Drop Bomb|
The good thing about video games is that they (mostly) don’t simulate air sickness, so you can really start dive-bombing on your first day as a pilot. Dive bombing is a tactic closely associated with WWII. Why? Because it was one of the most accurate ways to drop bombs at the time; later, during the Cold War, targeting computers made this technique obsolete. Note that the scale of this diagram is far from realistic: if you tried dropping a bomb this close to the ground you would probably a) be unable to pull up in time, or b) be hit by the blast of your own bomb.