I recently got the F14 Tomcat module for DCS and am really liking how it's been done. It has some major problems with the flight model such as being able to fly at 80,000 feet in level flight but I'm sure they'll deal with it soon enough.. I just avoid abusing its flaws and have really been enjoying flying in it.
It's now possible to engage targets from way beyond their reach, and by extension, it's safer to take on more targets when flying alone than it was before.
I've been practicing offline with a scenario that sets me up about 100 miles from a flight of 4 SU-27's. They're armed with long range R-27ER SARH missiles. I'm looking for advice on how to more efficiently wreck these guys without putting my aircraft at risk.
I've tried a number of tactics. One method is to climb 10-20,000 feet above them and just spam them with AIM-54's and turn on my own ECM jamming just before the SU-27's come into their own firing range. The AIM-54's can be fired in TWS mode and they go active just a little after my Tomcat comes into the firing range of their missiles. I typically shoot at about 60nm to 40nm as beyond that the missiles generally don't hit.
By the time the first two missiles hit their targets, the other two guys are usually entering firing range of their missiles. If there's only one enemy still flying, I guess firing another AIM-54 at him and angling off might be one way of reducing closure speed, but I know that online good pilots are able to do weird spiral turns that keep the lock while also dodging a radar missile and/or reducing closure speed if that's what they're trying to do. It's also possible that they can just turn into me negating the benefit of angling off to one side.
But when there are two of them I'm a little unsure of what the best choice is. Should I just shoot at both of them in pitbull mode and turn tail? I'm not sure that the seekers are as good as AIM-120's, I don't know if they'll hit the targets if I break the TWS lock by heading away from the bandits.
Anyone have any tips for dealing with this kind of situation when flying alone vs multiple, fairly evenly matched threats?
For what it's worth, I generally keep two AIM-9M's onboard as well if the fight gets that close, but the SU-27's still have full loads of SARH at that point and it's proven to be pretty dangerous to attempt a merge unless something weird is going on with the angles or altitude. I'd say chances of winning when this happens has been a bit better than 50/50. The biggest thing seems to be that the last surviving SU27 has already fired his missile at me while I am waiting for the last AIM-54 to hit or miss him (And trying to assess who else survived the volley). Perhaps it's worth locking up the last guy in the flight and sending two phoenixes his way before they come into R-27 range?