Hello everyone. Rick Rawlings suggested that I should introduce myself. I am Jerry Herd, 63, Dental Technician from St Louis. I have been through the forum pretty thoroughly by now and have found the postings very helpful, thank you all the taking the time.
I was interested in finding out what the experience of confronting the AI pilots has been for others. I played ROF for awhile and the sim has its good points, but good, intelligent AI is not one of them.
I have looked at tons of videos and read several books on air combat tactics but find that when I am in the cockpit and the action starts, all that goes out the window. The best advice I've found was what Biggles told some of his new boys in Biggles and the Rescue Flight.
"If you are meeting a Hun head-on, don't turn; it isn't done; make HIM turn; that's how we keep their tails down. Finally, if you are attacked by a Hun and things look grim, don't try to get away. Go for him as though you'd made up your mind to ram him; it's your only chance; it will give him the idea that you mean business, even if you don't, and the odds are he'll clear off and leave you alone."
That's pretty much what I follow because everything moves to fast to pretend your in a chess game. Of course, the general rule of keeping altitude advantage which equals speed, when you have it applies, but mostly I just keep facing a machine on or trying to get my tail until he either looses sight of me and gives me an opportunity or decides I'm going to be too much trouble and heads for home, sometimes I can run up on him then, sometimes I just let him go, depending on the machine I'm facing and the general situation. Most of my encounters end in a draw.
I had three Bristols on me recently. I just kept facing about and going at them until first one, then the other and finally the third got sick of me and went away. Didn't kill anybody but my character is still flying.
Welcome to the fray, and as our illustrious Lou always says, "The new guy buys the first virtual round". On that note, I'll have three fingers of Lagavulin with a splash of water if you don't mind!
Now, on to your topic of interest. Here is the key points of my dicta for handling scout aircraft.
Know the characteristics and capabilities of your aircraft and the enemies and use them to advantage. (Turn vs burn).
Always try to maintain height advantage as it is crucial to attack and defensive tactics. It is particularly an advantage in keeping him off of your six.
Wait, wait, wait...for best opportunity. Never rush the attack. Opportunities will present themselves in due time.
If the enemy craft is too fast and too agile to maintain an attack, take evasive manouvers and either try to find a way to fake injury and force land, or if possible drag him over your ground archie in hopes they will discourage him. Look for you balloon or airfield installations to achieve this.
Hope that is of some help.
Best Regards and thanks for the round!
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I do not have too much to offer, as I am certainly not an expert in these things, however, when I play in career mode, I am very serious about the survival of my pilots, and I just try to stay alive best I can. In this simulation, I have yet to see serious repercussions from just running away (if it can be done of course), and now that I think about it, could be very interesting to mod (or develop) that into the game. I know that there is some language when you shoot your own planes (ha ha, I've watched my 5-year-old son do this, then he has me land for him, and then see the language in the report about the bad thing you have done), but I have yet to see something like a forced end to your career or even worse, being shot for treachery...
...but, "blah blah blah", just stay alive!
WOFF:UE Computer Specs and set-up: Homebuilt Computer! Intel i5-3570k mildly overclocked to 3.8ghz AsRock Z75 mobo Nvidia GTX 1060 6GB (EVGA one fan version) 16 GB RAM 42 inch Sharp Aquos LCD TV with 120hz refresh Very old (over 20 years now) Aiwa Receiver/Amplifier Very old giant stereo speakers with newer sub-woofer Very old Logitech Wingman joystick with two buttons and a throttle slider Very old CH Thurstmaster analog footpedals Manhattan analog/USB converter W10
First a warm welcome, my advice would be, have patience, start at a low rank and stay by your wingman. I know it is so attractive to meet the enemy, to get the kill, only as a result mosty in my case, it did resulted as an dead pilot.
Enjoy what you see, enjoy flying and enjoy you ended the flight without being shot down and made an safe landing.
Thanks gentlemen for sharing your thoughts and dicta. I have been remiss about my wingmen, I rather expected them to stay with me,not the other way around, especially if they are of a lower rank. They usually get killed after a couple of sorties. Guess I've been letting them down. I'll probably have to cheat and mark them to keep track of them. It would be nice to have one stick around for awhile and see his career develop along with mine for however long or short it is.
Maintain altitude as much as possible and don't dive after anyone...even weak escaping prey...if that would leave you vulnerable to attack from his other high flying wing men. I usually follow this rule but sometimes if I feel far enough away from the main furball or I really outclass my opponents, I will follow opponents down.
If they start well above you, climb to meet your opponents ONLY once they are close enough that you won't burn up all of your speed in the attempt. Really just lift your nose once they are diving upon you and take a few shots, then level out again. Either that or turn into them so they quickly over shoot you and have no time / ability to course correct. Whatever you do, losing your speed in a prolonged climb while they build up theirs in the dive leaves you with less options and them with more....so don't do it.
Watch your opponents as they fly past you (presuming you have head tracking like TrackIR, etc) because it will let you know which direction to turn, climb or dive depending on where they are going. You can see me do this in my videos all the time and I find it to be very effective. It keeps me a step ahead of my opponents.
When required, lose altitude strategically. Sometimes if my opponent has a better plane and can get inside my turns, I keep criss crossing as much as possible but once I think he is just about to get his guns on me, I turn and dive under him. I lose some altitude but it "resets" the criss cross game and prolongs the fight. The longer you keep this up, you can sap their will to fight and frustrate them...unlike in other sims where the AI has a terminator mentality. In WOFF, if you frustrate them long enough, they will eventually turn for home...one by one. I have used this to even the odds many a time and then fought the last 1 or 2 of them once they tried to exit the combat area. Patience is the key here. You have to make them fly your game and don't give in to impulse.
Whenever you are not directly being targeted or are not trying to target someone, as long as you feel safe, try to gain some altitude back without burning up too much speed. Boom & Zoom tactics, even in planes traditionally thought of as turn and burn craft is often very effective. Just watch for wing damage in planes like Alb DIIIs, Noops and Fokker DRIs.
Panic fire is a waste. Don't waste ammo shooting unless you feel fairly confident you have a good shot. Once your ammo is gone, you are just a flying target and that's bad for you and any wing men that might need you to save them.
It's better for you long term and more satisfying emotionally to save a wing man who is being pursued than it is to shoot down a target you are tracking. If you see someone in trouble that you can help, break off and help them. The longer they live, the more competent wing men you will have flying with you in the future.
I'm sure there's more, but those are off the top of my head. I have a huge number of videos on my channel if you wish to spend the time watching my combat tactics. With the exception of the ones made several years ago, they are all made within a live campaign. Hope that helps.
Here is one example of a superior Spad fighter who found me alone (and wounded) trying to return to base. He started with a slight altitude advantage, was behind me and, IMHO, a better plane. You can watch how I respond to the threat. By frustrating him long enough staying just out of his gun sights view using criss crossing and some altitude variations, I waited until he made a mistake and then changed it from a turn fight of him chasing me into a B&Z I used to attack him while he tried to flee the combat zone.
And here's a campaign video of me dropping into a fight that leaves me quite out numbered in my Alb DV. Several of the Nieuport pilots took a real shine to me for awhile. You can see a lot of my survival tactics here. Please note that I am a terrible Albatross pilot. Normally I enjoy flying Pups and Tripehounds, but I figured I'd give the Germans a try. Creaghorn or Olham are far better suited to give you survival and victory tactics in Albs than I will ever be. None the less, I offer up what I do to make it work as best my limited Alb skills allow me. Enjoy.
Thanks again for your advice Gents. Mr Shade I will have a look at more of your campaign videos and Mr Dutch I will look at Requiem's vids again.
As regarding my present wingman, he send his regards and thanks. I pulled him out of a couple of sticky situations on the last few missions and following him home kept me from doing something stupid a time of two. He's been with me for 10 missions now and has gotten a couple of kills with me watching his six. He isn't as dumb as he looks.
I like to fly the Hannover two holers and they are very good at offense! You have to do the same criss-cross tactics and what is nice is the stinger in the tail! When you lose altitude in a fight do some hedge hopping. If SPADs are chasing then it is a pretty good chance some will crash into the trees. It's pretty exciting! While hedge hopping zoom up over trees then back down then bank hard. Your gunner will get some great shots. I love hearing his 'if you want peace, prepare for war' Parabellum talking to the chasseur!
The SPADs, though speedy, can't turn with Albi at altitude. I always turn toward them and try to maintain an altitude advantage and continue turning into them until they tire and fly away. I only engage if they zoom upwards and happen to be in front of me but I never fly down to them. The SPADs appear to zoom up then fall off a bit but I've never noticed any totally stall and fall away. The AI recruits excellent pilots! Even though the rotary engined airplanes are supposed to have engine performance that diminishes with increasing altitude relative to the Mercedes powered Albi I never notice it. I always turn left if they start getting close to being behind me but Camels and such can still get on my tail! When it gets 'hot' I tumble/ spin away. There just isn't any way to get away from those pesky Camels!
My apologies for coming to the thread a bit late - RL has been busy as always.
I recall a series of documents being particularly helpful to me when I was getting the hang of OFF. It's the Survival in the Air Series. And while the flight models on some of these aircraft have been adjusted since then, the general advice about how to fly and fight in these machines help considerably.