Falcon 4 Campaigns

Posted By: DBond

Falcon 4 Campaigns - 01/29/17 07:40 PM

I want to start this thread for discussion of the campaign system in Falcon 4. I am playing BMS version 4.33.3, but most will apply to all versions of F4. There are differences however, so be aware that not everything will apply if you are flying another version.

For me, the campaign system in this sim is the best one in any sim, ever made, ever. I won't go in to all the reasons why I feel this way in this first post, but you can be sure I will have mentioned it all, again and again, through the course of it. And because of it's awesomeness, it is great to discuss, and to share tactics and strategies. There are many ways to accomplish any goal in the F4 campaign. So feel free to add your thoughts and strategies. When I make threads like these, I continually refine, chop and change. So reading through posts you already have again later might reveal additional or corrected info.

I'd like to touch on theaters, campaigns, mission and package creation and management, victory objectives, running the ground war and more.


When you first fire up Falcon 4 and click campaigns, you are presented with three choices. Let's have a look.

[Linked Image]

The campaigns are, from top to bottom, Tiger Spirit, Rolling Fire and Iron Fortress.

Tiger Spirit (TS) is the easiest one from the Blue perspective. You start fairly close to your objectives, are not completely outnumbered and there is no threat of Russia entering the war on the behalf of your adversary. I recommend this one as a first F4 campaign.

Edit 11/8/17 Having played all of the included campaigns several times, I believe the KTO Iron Fortress campaign is the easiest one and would make the best starter campaign. The ground objective is simply to capture Seoul, and aircraft force ratios are the most manageable.

Rolling Fire (RF) is much larger in scope. Blue has more ground to capture, Red has a much larger force advantage and Russia will enter the war in a few days.

Iron Fortress (IF) is a classic backs-against-the-wall scenario. Blue has been driven back to the Pusan Perimeter and must hold at all costs, and hopefully push back. Note: In BMS IF has been drastically altered in starting state. I have some thoughts on this I'll get to later.

Depending on which version of F4 you fly, and what you have downloaded, more campaigns and theaters will be available. There are many, and feel free to discuss those here. For the purposes of this thread for the time being I will focus on the classic 'standard' Korea campaigns that we've been flying in one form or another for close to twenty years.

Getting Started. Configuring Your Campaign

The first thing you should do is decide on your realism and challenge ratings. Realism is set outside of the campaign section. In F4, each sortie you fly in the campaign is graded. Points are awarded based on various factors. These points are used to determine promotions, medals and the resulting aggregate rating affects the performance of your side as a whole in the campaign. So that means the performance of your side's AI is directly linked to your performance in the missions you fly. So it's important to do well if you want to win your campaigns! More on this later.

Challenge rating is set in the same screen in which you choose which campaign you will fly. In the screenshot above you can see I have it set to Veteran. Challenge rating mostly affects force ratios of the two sides. The higher the challenge rating, the more planes each squadron on the enemy side will have, and the fewer yours will have. The same applies to the ground units. I t also affects the skills level of enemy units and aircraft.

Correction: In Falcon BMS 4.33 Challenge Rating does not affect force ratios in the same way. Higher ratings do not result in smaller Blue squadrons.

Edit 10/29/17 For information on how to revert to the traditional effects of challenge rating see this post by Schnidrman

Challenge rating is also used as a modifier in the points you score. So combined, the higher your realism and challenge ratings, the more points you will score, the faster you will be promoted, the more medals you will be awarded.

Personally, I feel that F4 is a sim that should be played on 100% realism, but there's no rule, so play it the way you're comfortable. Just be aware that promotions will come slowly at reduced settings.

Configuring your Campaign, Clock Paused at Start

Once you've chosen which campaign you will fly, decide on which airbase and squadron you will fly for, then click Commit. You will be taken to the Priorities screen with the clock paused. There are three things to concern yourself with, Target Types, Mission Types and PAKS. Taking some time here to make changes will go along way toward setting the early tone and getting your campaign off to a good start. In any F4 campaign, the first few hours are crucial.

For me, what I want to accomplish early on is this: attrit Red Air, Red air defenses and Red Ground. In the early stages of the campaign you have to decide the best use of your limited assets. Do you want to use your airframes to take out patrol boats and textile mills on the first morning?

Using the sliders in this section we can give targeting guidance for the Air Tasking Order, henceforth known as ATO. The ATO is the list of all fragged missions on your side in the theater. In most cases you will let the computer handle this. But you can get as involved as you want to be, even up to fragging every mission manually. But no one does that. The ATO tends to do a decent job, but I find it is much better to create additional missions myself to fill in gaps I see, to ensure certain targets are hit and generally to give the ATO a helping hand and tailor the mission set to my liking.

Mission Types

[Linked Image]

The Mission Types sliders tell the ATO what types of missions you want it to frag. Shown above are typical opening settings for me. I don't want the ATO wasting airframes hitting ports and factories. There will be time for that later. OCA is rather broad, and includes airbases, CCC sites, radar facilities and more. You can seee I have that slider set to on just a little. I'm OK with some airfield strikes, but in general I don't favor an airfield denial strategy for reasons I'll get in to later in the thread. But shutting down a few early can help significantly.

Target Types

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The Target Type sliders go hand in hand with the sliders in Mission Types. Again, in the early hours I'm looking to hit Red aircraft, air defenses and ground units. The rest can wait. I also want extensive defensive air. That is critical. The rest can wait until we've won air superiority and removed any direct threat to our ground forces by encroaching Red troops.


[Linked Image]

In the PAKS section we are telling the ATO where we want these missions to be sent. In the early hours we should concentrate our power along the front. Later, if things are going well, we will adjust all of these settings to hit different and deeper targets. If you allow the ATO to send aircraft to Pyongyang at 10 AM on the first day in Rolling Fire you are just asking to lose those planes and pilots. You can't win the campaign on the first morning, but you can just about lose it if you aren't careful

In this screenshot you can see an initial setup for Rolling Fire. The PAKS all along the front on each side of the lines are fully on (dark red). A few just behind my lines are barely on (light red, to ensure HAVCAP is fragged for my tankers and airborne command and control flights) and the rest are fully off (white). In this example I don't want to have assets flying CAP in Pusan or Japan. So those are off. Be sure to click on every PAK. Some appear to be off, but are slightly on. They appear white. But if you don't turn them off you will have missions flying deep behind the enemy lines and it's way too early for that.

There are many different ways to play, and this is just the way I do it. Once you are satisfied, click start campaign and you're taken to the main map screen. Pause the clock.

Posted By: DBond

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 01/30/17 12:32 PM

Configuring The Map

Once you've entered the main planning screen after clicking Start Campaign, you'll be looking at the 2D map. Leave the game paused and configure your map. Right click on it and set what will be displayed. If not set by default, change ground unit types to Battalion so you can get a better picture of what is out there and where it is. At this stage you won't see too much. Only known enemy locations will be revealed. And since we don't have AWACS or JSTARS in the air yet, and no missions have been flown, little is known of the enemy's disposition. That will soon change.

I tend to display everything except for Political (towns and cities) and Infrastructure (bridges). If playing BMS, set your Bullseye. I like to set the Bullseye over a well-known spot such as a city like Kaesong. It helps me picture locations relative to Bullseye calls. Also in BMS you can set steerpoint lines to show the FLOT for example ,giving you a fence-in line on your HSD when you fly your missions. Threat Circles I don't find too helpful and they just muck up my map, but flavor to taste. With the map options sorted let's have a look at the map.

Managing Your Squadron

Not much is going on. On the left, the ATO for your selected squadron will show all fragged missions. Look it over. If you are the hands-on type of campaign manager click on each one. Look at the waypoints. Click loadout and check what they'll be carrying. I've seen some really whacky stuff over the years. Like F-16s set to attack Infantry with Mav-Gs, or a naval strike with BSU-50. Alter loadouts as you see fit. Changes can be made up to 2 minutes prior to takeoff time. F4 armorers work fast! I tend to get quite involved here. I have specific profiles in mind that I want certain mission types to fly.

For example, the BARCAP (and DCA) is a common mission and will provide the backbone of your Defensive Air coverage. The computer tends to set the patrol waypoints for these missions flying more or less perpendicular to the front. I want these mission flown on a parallel path. So I will drag them to what I feel are better positions. I might straighten out zig-zag ingress and egress paths to shorten the flight. Or move the waypoint that is flying over the enemy to a safer position.

There is absolutely no requirement to do anything here. Many players want to fly missions and leave the rest to the program. That's fine. Either way works. But I think you will perform better in your campaign with a little helpful tweaking. Plus it's fun and gives you plenty to do while waiting for your step time.

This can be extended to the entire theater. You can use the ATO>show all packages, or you can transfer to another squadron and do it again. It can get quite addictive. Get as involved as you want to be. Careful and considered work here will pay off over time with higher effectiveness of the AI and faster turn around times, meaning more missions can be flown. Or leave it to the ATO. Up to you.

One additional option is to uncheck the Set by HQ box on the squadron page. That stops the computer from fragging any missions for that squadron, leaving them at your discretion. All of my campaigns are flown this way. I take over a squadron and act as the CO. I still frag missions for any squadron in the theater, but reserve one Viper squadron for my use.

H-Hour +1

Depending on which campaign and settings you have chosen, there may be urgent business on the ground with Red armor and troops bearing down on your frontline positions. This is certainly the case in Rolling Fire (which I am playing at the mo and for this thread) and also in Iron Fortress. Red is on the attack. You can leave it to the program to handle it, or roll up your sleeves and get to work.

One of the best things about the campaign is the ability to Add Package, or create your own missions to be flown. Some may feel this is a bit of a black art, and in some sense it is. I see alot of posts with people struggling to get what they want set up. But it's easy once you know how. The scope of what can be accomplished here is amazing. Later, we can talk about creating Alpha Strikes and other large missions, but for now, let's get some A-10s on the Red horde pouring over the border.

In the following screenshot we see Red troops coming south down the road network between Kaesong and Seoul (upper right-center, sorry for unedited screens). This needs to be checked. If they overrun our border posts they could force evacuation of the airfields in and around Seoul. We need to prevent that.

Creating Custom Missions

To begin creating missions, keep the game paused, right-click anywhere on the map and choose Add Package. If you want your mission to target a specific battalion or structure, right click on it. In this case we will right click on empty ground. This will be an interdiction, which is an 'area' mission with no specific target.

[Linked Image]

Once you click Add Package, the timing dialog appears. By default the ToT (Time over Target) will be exactly 30 minutes from the current time. Take-off times will be backward computed to fit. Don't worry about adjusting the take-off. You need to decide how urgent the mission is. You can reduce the ToT time to get there faster, and here I will slice 6 minutes off of default ToT to get them there a little sooner Click New.

Clicking New calls up the Add Flight dialog. Here we will choose the aircraft that will fly the missions, how many will fly and the squadron, air base and skill of the pilots. For this mission we will choose the A-10s of the 25th Attack Squadron out of Osan, which sits just south of Seoul.

As we all know there are horses for courses, or aircraft types that are better suited to fly a certain mission type than others. For interdictions against enemy troops nothing beats the A-10. Other good candidates are AH-64, AH-1, F-15 Strike Eagles. I sheepishly admit to even having used B-52s loaded with a shed-load of CBU on occasion. Again, depending on which campaign or theater you have chosen certain aircraft types may not be available or perhaps others are. Our trusty F-16s may be among the most versatile combat jets that have ever flown, but that also means they aren't the best at anything. Still, you have plenty of them so they will do yeoman's work in all types of missions.

For this mission we will choose the A-10s, make it a two-ship, choose AI (Air Interdiction) as the role and set the pilot skill to veteran. For missions with specific targets, like Pre-plan CAS or a facility strike, check that the target shown here is the the one you intend to hit. Once you are satisfied click OK and the mission is generated. Or not. This where most players run in to difficulty. The mission you are creating can only occur if there are available aircraft to fly it. The ATO does a fairly efficient job of ensuring all of a squadron's aircraft have something to do, leaving few or none unassigned at any given time.

If the mission cannot be created as fragged, you will get one of two errors, either bad timing, or no aircraft. Bad timing tends to mean there are aircraft available, but cannot meet the timing requirements, often due to distance to target. When this occurs, go back to the timing screen and add time to the ToT. Try 10 minutes and do it again. Once the requirements are met the mission will be created.

No aircraft means all planes of the chosen squadron are currently assigned missions. There are two ways around this. The first is to find another mission already fragged for the squadron and delete it. Click on the mission on the left and note it's callsign, then click ATO at the bottom. Find the mission (uncheck show all packages) and right click, choose delete. This will free up those airframes for you to assign. Be careful though. You could unwittingly leave a gap in your defenses or remove critical escort or what have you. HAVCAPs for tankers way behind the lines are a good choice for deletion. Sometimes, for reasons I do not understand, deleting missions does not result in assignable aircraft. Other times it does.

If the mission isn't urgent though, it is better to simply change the ToT. Try setting the mission up again but add one hour to the ToT. Keep adding time until the mission requirements can be met. For large packages I like to add several hours. This essentially guarantees I'll have any type of aircraft I want available to add to the package and eliminates the trial-and error to speed up the process.

Some campaigns have multiple squadrons flying the same aircraft type. Try to choose the one with the shortest route, but don't forget there may be another squadron available if the first one you choose has no available planes.

This can be extended to the missions you want to fly yourself. Get in the habit of building your missions a few hours in advance and you'll always have custom missions ready to go.

[Linked Image]

In our example however, A-10s are available and the mission is created. In this case it's Buzzard 1. Now click loadout at the bottom of the screen. Change as you see fit. In this case the default loadout was a bunch of GBUs. I changed it so each A-10 would carry four Mav-Ds, six CBU-87 and three CBU-97. I also adjusted the waypoints to make the flight path as short as possible. I then placed the first target steerpoint (STP #5) near the northernmost friendly unit in the area and the second target steerpoint (STP #6) further north along the road. This ensures that the aircraft won't overfly enemy units before they start their attacks and means the most threathening, closest enemy unit gets the A-10s full attention. At the start, all units are full strength so I want to take every precaution.

[Linked Image]

In addition I created a second A-10 interdiction to the west of the first. Having both in the target area at the same time has many advanatges, making it more survivable by giving the enemy more targets and simplifying any cover you can provide. In this case we will not assign any escort. There will be plenty of BARCAPS flown in the area. However, if you want to assign escort, TARCAP is a good choice. You can keep on going and expand any package by adding escort, SEAD escort and so on. Leave the Add Package dialog open and click New again to add another flight to the package. Timing complications easily arise, so large packages are best done a few hours in advance.

Here is the second A-10 mission to the west.

[Linked Image]

After this I repeated the procedure to get attack helos, A-10s and Strike Eagles interdicting all avenues of approach along the front that the enemy was using to cross the border. Within hours, if all goes well, the enemy attack will be blunted and Blue will get ready to consolidate and go on the offensive.

Another strategy here would be to hit the bridges they need to cross. I don't. Any bridge that the enemy cannot cross because it is destroyed is also a bridge that your troops can't use once you are rolling north. And the Infrastructure slider is off in Target Types for this reason. But the truth is you have to do one of the other. Either get your interdiction going or hit the bridges. To do neither means the Reds are going to keep rolling south, and no one wants to have their rear penetrated. eek

That covers the basics of creating a mission. You can get as involved as you want. Pick targets to hit, strike the airbase that's been giving you fits, throw up a sweep occasionally, fill gaps in your BARCAPs, hit the enemy carrier, whatever you can envision. It is very helpful to learn which squadrons are based where. Distance and timing is key to successful mission creation. Knowing who is where simplifies the whole thing, allowing you to be more efficient in your tasking.

Posted By: rtoolooze262

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 01/31/17 03:58 AM

Thank you very much for this info! This is gonna help me understand better how it all works so I can finaly get deep into the sim.
Posted By: theOden

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 01/31/17 05:01 AM

Thank you DBond, you are the best.

Now, a few things I learnt (after all these years!?).
Or rather, never thought of.

While I do create my own packages, usually only 2 flights, I never ever came up with the idea of creating AI flights. That A-10 move the morning of day 1 is just brilliant (but I'm still a bit reluctant to place F-15E working over FEBA, maybe I shouldn't).

Loadouts, sure I've set a million types of loadouts but never for planned AI flights! I need to start doing this!

As I said in another thread, I never touch PAK's. Now I will never fly a campaign without touching the PAK's (and AI loadouts and AI flights and..).

In all honesty, with the customer base shouting for Dynamic Campaign in DCS and what not, I say this piece should be an article, just cut and paste and put it out there. I am sure "new" e-pilots never heard of Falcon would realize there is something deeper out there if one can only stop going for the looks.

This should be an article I tell you! smile
Posted By: DBond

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 01/31/17 12:56 PM

You make a good point about the Strike Eagles. But in the stock KTO campaigns in BMS, dedicated ground attack aircraft are few, so we gotta make do. Let me know how your first attempts go.
Posted By: DBond

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 01/31/17 05:30 PM

Eyes in the Sky

One of the most important assets you have in the campaign is what Falcon calls Command, Control, Communications and Intelligence (CCCI). This is your AWACS and JSTARS. AWACS can be land-based E-3 Sentry aircraft or carrier based E-2 Hawkeye. JSTARS is flown by the E-8 Joint Surveillance Target Attack Radar System.

In most campaigns that include these aircraft you will rarely have more than four of each type. These aircraft are what puts the HAV in HAVCAP. You absolutely need to protect them. Fortunately I've not found myself with none (unless the campaign is designed as such), but you can imagine how difficult it would be to fly F4 campaign missions with no AWACS support. The 'Sunrise' radio call, indicating an AWACS has arrived on station, is music to my ears.

The ATO does a good job of fragging these support missions. But if you're hands-on, you can make some tweaks to increase the advantages these missions afford. The ATO tends to set these missions up to fly some distance behind the front lines, maybe 70-100 miles. Because each radar system has a certain range of coverage, where they fly determines how 'deeply' in to Red airspace they can detect objects. The further from the front, the more shallow the coverage. I really have no problem with this, as I'd always favor survivability in computer generated missions.

However, this means less advanced warning of incoming threats and less clarity in AWACS response when you are flying missions and asking for picture, threat or declaration calls. There is an example of this occurring in one of my missions in the 'My Falcon Odyssey' thread here at SimHQ. Chalis saw nothing until I found incoming aircraft on my radar.

The same applies to JSTARS. The further from the front, the ssafer they ostensibly are, but at the cost of coverage. The closer to the front they fly, the more and deeper targets they will reveal. This is especially helpful for the ATO to assign targets. Anyone who has flown F4 campaigns for a while has seen the ATO devolve to a steady procession of BARCAPS. Putting up a JSTARS just behind the front can suddenly reveal heretofore unseen targets and wake the ATO up and get strikers outbound.

Of course the catch is that the closer to the front you put them, the more danger they may be in. So it's a balancing act, and just another factor that makes getting hands-on in the campaign so much fun. Be sure to provide CAP when you can. HAVCAP isn't necessary really in my view. But putting BARCAPS some distance to the bad guy side of the CCCI flight will shield them from attacks.

In addition to the range issue, the ATO tends to set up the patrol steerpoints flying perpendicular to the front. Like the BARCAPs I mentioned earlier, I want these missions flown parallel to the front. With CCCI missions, doing so maintains a uniform depth of coverage and eliminates the 'waves breaking on the beach' effect you would otherwise get as the CCCI flight flies toward, then away from, the front lines.

One nice advantage here is these aircraft have exceptional endurance. Back when I was flying AF, we did some decidedly unscientific tests at Frugals. The upshot was we came up with reasonable on-station times of 10 hours for the E-3 and 16 hours for JSTARS. E-2 are much shorter-legged and should be left at default which is 5 hours. Of course that's AF and I have not tested in any way in BMS. But it's safe to add a few hours surely.

Edit: Having played BMS for a few months now the best way to do this is to frag out your CCCI flight, adjust your steerpoints, then click one of the patrol steerpoints. Adjust the station time by adding hours until the flight path turns red. Then just reduce the station time by two hours or so and you've now created a CCCI mission close to max endurance.

Let's talk for a moment about the E-2 Hawkeye. In my opinion they aren't very effective. Shorter endurance and significantly reduced detection ranges means they are not a direct substitute for the E-3. Don't attempt to use them interchangably. But they have a perfect role, and that's carrier protection. Since they are carrier based, it makes sense to get an E-2 up near the carrier. Oftentimes an enemy carrier strike package will take a route that might fall outside of your E-3's range. The E-2 should be there to supplement and give you enough warning (if you're paying attention!) to get some interceptors up. The Superbug can carry a lot of slammers!

So the bottom line is nothing really needs to be done by the player in regards to AWACS and ELINT missions. But doing so can give some marked advantage that could pay off handsomely.

Posted By: Killjoy12

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 01/31/17 10:43 PM

For the custom packages, is there a way to see the result of said package? In you example, is there a way to see how your A-10s did?
Posted By: DBond

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 02/01/17 12:53 AM

Originally Posted By: Killjoy12
For the custom packages, is there a way to see the result of said package? In you example, is there a way to see how your A-10s did?

Only by observation, no debrief or stats, unless you were to take over that flight on their way home or something. Watching them however I can confirm at least 6 battalions completely destroyed, and many more damaged by both of the A-10 missions near Kaesong. They proved quite effective.
Posted By: DBond

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 02/01/17 12:38 PM

Early Return on Investment

This screenshot shows how effective getting hands-on in the campaign can be. It's fourteen hours since the war started. The Red attack has been smashed and Blue has consolidated and now is launching an offensive near Kaesong. Frankly I don't recall when this would occur in previous RFs I've played, but it's fast for sure. And really, I've only been involved in putting out fires here and there. There is far more I could have done. But it's a good start to this campaign.

[Linked Image]

Counter Air Strategy

Here are the aircraft force levels. The frontline CAP strategy has done well. We have gained air superiority and taken light losses to our own airforce. By concentrating our missions along the front and denying the ATO the ability to frag deep strikes losses have been kept low.

In the early afternoon I finally took the leash off and opened up airfield strikes with the sliders. Within a couple of hours all active bases within the starting covered PAKs except for Wonsan were out of commission. When this occurred can be seen in the graph where the Red force level, err, levels out and starts to up-tick once again. In the opening post I mentioned that I do not favor an airfield denial strategy. I would rather attrit them in the air. The reason is that you cannot destroy aircraft whose base is destroyed. They aren't all sitting out in the sun on the tarmac waiting for you to pickle GBUs on them. What this means is that while their base is knocked out they are replenishing. Once their field has been repaired, you all of a sudden have three or four near full strength squadrons taking to the air. This sudden rush can easily win local superiority if they were all to get up in short order. Your CAP will be hard pressed to deal with it.

I would much rather keep battling them piecemeal in the air. In addition, it used to be that the program used something called initiative points to calculate events. You'll get more for destroying numerous aircraft than you will for knocking out airfields. Assuming it still works this way is another reason to not go all out on airfield denial.

Further, airfield strikes are dangerous and losses more likely. If you could keep the pressure on, and destroy a newly repaired airfield as soon as it came back on line you could mitigate the effect. And knocking some out can make a big difference in the first few hours. In this campaign I timed it for when I thought the Red attack was waning, so that I could get more interdictors outbound with little fear of interception. It worked. But all things considered I would rather do this work in the air than on the ground. And quite frankly flying missions in F4 is more fun when there are Red aircraft stooging about. Empty skies is rather...mundane.

[Linked Image]

Here is the ground unit force levels. The Reds took severe losses once they came out of their holes. Even so, it's now just about even.

[Linked Image]

Pilot Rating and Performance

This shot shows how my squadron (36th FS Block 40s out of Osan) has done and the involvement I personally had. I flew five missions in the first seven hours. The Wall 'O MiGs was thick and I couldn't just sit by and watch so I kept fragging and flying back in to it, getting good ratings. This is important so let's talk about the player rating and how it affects things.

In F4 the program uses the player's pilot rating as a modifier to calculate the resolution of events in the 2D and in 3D outside of the bubble. So the outcome of each engagement you watch on the 2D map is affected by how well you have personally done. This could be good or bad obviously depending on your rating. Do well, and the Blue aircraft will sweep the skies. Do poorly, and you'll watch as a pair of mighty MiG-17s make short work of your 4th generation jets. It's a feature that is so anti-sim it's puzzling it's there at all, but it is and we have to take it in to consideration.

What this means is you need to score good ratings. That's not always easy to do. So if you get a bad rating, and we all do, be sure to get back up as soon as possible and get a good rating. Keep this as high as possible for as long as possible. Your rating will erode over time if you do not fly any missions. I tend to fly every 4 to 6 hours on average, more frequently early, then slowing the pace as the intensity wanes. But if you have an excellent rating, I think you would be safe going up to about 12 hours before you'll start to notice a decline in Blue effectiveness.

Be sure to fly early. Frag yourself a mission and get up in the air. Like in the first 10 minutes. Your goal is to get an excellent rating. So frag a DEAD strike or BARCAP or something that's relatively easy to score well with. The skies will be mostly empty for the first 45 minutes or so. Take advantage, get a good rating and the events that are about to unfold will be shifted in your favor due to your good rating.

There is a simple way to game the game if you're so inclined. If you fly a BARCAP you can set the patrol time to zero (it's 30 minutes by default). Doing so means you will get an excellent rating even if you do nothing more than turn around and land. You can then fly any sort of mission you want. I use this occasionally to load up with some missiles and ground ordnance and just go hunting. HARMs for radars, CBU for columns I might come across, whatever. The F-16 Freie Jagd. It's not exactly procedure, but it works, it's fun and effective.

My standard mission profile that I fly in the early hours is what I call a HARMCAP. Load the Viper with a pair of HARMS and four air missiles with bags and go hunting on a zero-time BARCAP.

This is usually what is meant when you hear other players say they Hijacked a BARCAP. They selected an already fragged BARCAP, zeroed out the patrol time and made it in to their own mission. It's a quick work around for flying your own missions with little effort in setting it up.

Note zero losses. That just isn't true. But the program has some issue in regards to tracking your squadron's losses. It works in our favor, but still, it would be better if it were accurate.

[Linked Image]

Here are myself and my wingman, ready to roll for a daylight mission on Osan Two-Seven.

[Linked Image]

Posted By: DBond

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 02/02/17 12:54 PM

Here we are, 23+ hours in to the campaign (Rolling Fire begins at 5:00 AM). This is what the A-10s have done. Devastating. Over 2000 ground units destroyed in less than a day. This has enabled us to take Kaesong. The HART line has been abandoned and Blue is moving on to it.

[Linked Image]

At this stage, the PAKS have been re-done, moving deeper a little and turning off the ones behind my lines. Usually, by nightfall on the first day, the Wall 'O MiGs has been dealt with and I use the sliders to authorize strategic strikes. Start hitting factories, nuclear facilities and other strategic sites. But this time, with the fast transition to attack, I decided to leave it off until we could take Kaesong.

One thing I won't discuss much in this thread is supply. I don't really know that (if) it works as you'd expect. I've read some convincing articles and threads about supply in F4 campaigns. But I've never gotten the feeling that it really means anything. Perhaps SAM units can run out of SAMs or a MiG squadron might run out of Archers. I've seen weapons showing 'out'. But the question is does striking these targets make a difference? Or would this just naturally occur as part of the way supply is modeled? Regardless if it actually affects the campaign in any significant way, hitting strategic targets is still realistic and we go all in. Plus it's fun to employ weapons like JDAMs hitting these targets.

I mention this because in this campaign I wondered if I delay strategic strikes, would taking an 'intact' Kaesong be of benefit to Blue? Would we benefit from not having destroyed Kaesong Textile Mill or the supply dump for example? I don't know the answer, but I waited all the same.

Having taken Kaesong the strategic slider is now on. This will start to get your stealth assets in the air. They only fly at night of course, but are very effective. These are the aircraft you want to send on deep strikes in the early part of the campaign. The ATO only sends them against traditional targets like factories and airfields, but you can use them to hit radar installations or HQ units or whatever you might need hit.
Posted By: DBond

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 02/04/17 03:52 PM

No screens at this time. I couldn't connect to SimHQ this morning to upload pics before leaving for work, which is where I write this stuff.

The campaign has just about reached day 3, and Blue continues the advance. I expect that the Chinese, who have been using strong rhetoric condemning NATO's involvement in what they call a local dispute, will likley intervene shortly.

On the plus side, the navy has shown up, with the USS Carl Vinson's battle group in the Sea of Japan. A Nimitz-class supercarrier, it houses several F/A-18 squadrons, some Prowlers and Hawkeyes. A welcome boost, and helps to balance our deployment, since we had virtually nothing on the east coast aside from some F-5s at Kangnung. I wish we could transfer squadrons to different bases in this campaign. Edit: See Schnidrman's following post for the solution to this.

I have a nice shot of the aircraft force levels showing Red completely smashed. The 'fight them in the air' strategy has certainly paid dividends. A Chinese entry will give them a much-needed shot in the arm.

Here's another example of something I did with manual tasking. After taking Kaesong, I turned on all of the PAKS south of Pyongyang to begin targeting things in that area. To prep the area for all the strikers that would eventually start arriving, I fragged out an extensive DEAD effort. Using F-16s I set up individual two-ship DEAD strikes at every known SAM battery south of Pyongyang. The leader of each two-ship was loaded with four slammers and two HARMs. Each Wingman got two slammers, two heaters and six Mav-Ds. All aircraft got two bags of gas.

At this stage, late day two in RF, Blue has nine Viper squadrons. Five Block 52s, three 40s and one 32. So plenty of them to play around with. 32s cannot carry HARMs so those were used as the CAP'ers. They are excellent in air-to-air, even if restricted to slammer-Bs and no 9X's. The 52s and 40s were the strikers.

All missions times were set to 'roll up' the SAMs. That is, the closest SAM sites were targeted first. Then the rest were staggered so that the following F-16s would arrive just as the first SAMS were being hit. We're talking just minutes here, but failing to do this means that any ships you are sending against the 'deeper' sites would have to fly through the engagement zones of the closer SAM batteries, so some co-ordination is required to prevent unnecessary losses. If you set all of these missions with identical ToTs the deep guys will overfly the close sites before they've been taken out.

Each flight path was tweaked. One thing you need to be careful of with SEAD and DEAD strikes (and naval strikes too) is that oftentimes the program will set the IP for these missions too close to the target. 10 miles is common. The AI will wait until they have reached the IP before attacking. Too-close IPs therefore negate the standoff capability of the HARM. And this is also true in naval strikes using weapons like Harpoon. It's true essentially with any mission that is using any type of weapon with standoff capability. So it's always worth it to check the IPs on these missions and adjust as necessary. I will usually drag the IP to about 30 miles. The leader gets his HARMs off taking out the radar, and the wingman swoops in to fire his rifles at the launchers. Very effective.

In addition, CAPs were set up along the ingress/egress routes. They would clear the tails of any strikers that came off target with a threat trailing. Following a few minutes behind this DEAD effort were several facility strikes using guided munitions. Factories, supply points, nuclear plants etc. I fragged myself a DEAD mission and took out two Fan Songs on the southeast side of P'Yang. Some Fulcrums came up to play but we dealt with them. Fulcrum-A's aren't much threat at BVR ranges.

In all, ten SAM sites were shut down. This clears that space for ATO-fragged follow-on missions to this area. I spent about twenty minutes setting it all up. Well worth the effort as any Blue aircraft flying south of P'Yang will now be far safer.

Missions like this are so much fun to be a part of. Switch to proximity channel in the target area and listen to all of the aircraft you fragged as they go through the paces. Magnum calls in succession, followed shortly by the rifles. The CAP engaging threats and keeping you informed of where the bad guys are. Turn for home just as Paveway calls are made as the facility strikers start dropping. Everyone fences out in short order through the CAP. Only drawback is some possible congestion in the ATC flow back at base.
Posted By: schnidrman

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 02/05/17 01:38 AM

I wish we could transfer squadrons to different bases in this campaign.

You didn't know?? Of course you didn't, I forgot to tell you. Visit this page for some awesome tools created by Falcas. Weapons Delivery Planner and Mission Commander are the two "must-haves". Mission Commander is the one you want to add or move squadrons, etc. WDP is for DTC, comms setup, etc.etc.etc.

Get it all here...


P.S. I think sombody might have mentioned it one of your other threads, but if not, Tacview is an awesome tool for ACMI reviewing. You get the full version for a limited time, but after that it defaults to the freeware unless you purchase Home or Pro.


Hint: Website has a sale a few time a year. I was able to get the Pro version for the price of the Home version.
Posted By: DBond

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 02/05/17 04:17 PM

Thanks very much. I knew of most of these, from the BMS forum,, but not that it allowed base changes. That's great.
Posted By: DBond

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 02/06/17 02:29 PM

Campaign Objectives: Winning the War

To win whichever campaign you have chosen it is necessary to capture the objectives. What the objectives are depends on which theater, campaign and even version of Falcon you are playing. In Tiger Spirit for instance, the objectives are different in BMS than in AF. I'll list the objectives as shown for Blue for the KTO campaigns (Korean Theater of Operations) in the BMS 4.33 manual.

Tiger Spirit

wins if Wonsan and P’yongyang, Onch'ang-ni, Hamju, Huich'on, Kaech'on and Taehung are
controlled in less than 5 campaign days.


wins if Wonsan and P’yongyang are controlled in less than 5 campaign days and DPRK
strength is less than 1/10 that of Allies forces

Rolling Fire

wins if Wonsan and P’yongyang are controlled in less than 30 campaign days.

Iron Fortress

wins if Pusan and Seoul are controlled in less than 5 campaign days.

So the bottom line is that everything you do is a means to that end. Destroying aircraft, SAM sites and tank battalions is done to clear the way. Only by getting Blue on the objectives will you gain a victory and get another tick mark in your logbook.

Campaigns can be lost. If gaining promotion is important to you be sure to avoid a loss, because any campaign defeat on your logbook will lock out higher ranks. One loss and you'll never be promoted to Colonel or General for example no matter how well you perform or how many missions and flight hours you accrue.

But honestly, it would be rather difficult to lose a campaign. A stalemate is much more likely.

Promotions and Rank

According to the BMS manual here are the ranks and the requirements for each. Keep in mind that this is also version dependent. The player is commissioned as a Second Lieutenant

1st Lieutenant: 150 points

Captain: 300 points

Major: 800 points and one campaign won

Lt Colonel: 1600 points one campaign won and no campaign losses

Colonel: 3200 points one campaign won and no campaign losses

General: 6400 points

As we talked about earlier in this thread, each mission you fly in the campaign is graded. Factors include but are not limited to: realism percentage, challenge rating, mission difficulty, weapons hit percentage, aircraft destroyed, ground units destroyed, wingman survival and incoming fire evaded. Points are awarded and accrue over time. You'll be promoted when you reach each requirement. No one wants to be a Second Louie forever!

Managing the Ground War

Falcon: Allied Force gave us the ability to control individual ground units and give them destination waypoints. BMS continues this and allows the player to give orders to the ground units. This gives us some control on where they go and what they capture.

To do so, confirm the map display is set to Ground Units>Battalions. Right click on any one and choose Status and uncheck (un-highlight) the Set by HQ box. Now left click on the unit and a waypoint circle should appear. Drag that circle to the desired destination and the unit should head off to capture it. I say 'should' because frankly it's quirky. The unit doesn't always listen and sometimes they decide to go off in a completely different direction than where you ordered.

In my campaigns I like to start moving air defense units north right at the start. The program will not do a good job of having your air defense units keep pace with your advance. Soon your leading elements will have outranged your air defense umbrella. So I like to manually get some Hawks, Patriots and AAA units heading for the front. At the glacial speed that ground units travel in this sim, it's a good idea to get them rolling early. But after a while I will check on them and find they are headed somewhere else entirely. So in practice it isn't entirely reliable. But using this feature can help speed up your advance and allow you to capture more territory more quickly. It's a good idea to return the unit to HQ control when you are done with them. In AF you can choose the setting to have this done automatically, but in BMS you'll need to do so manually.

Another good use of this feature is to get Engineers on a damaged facility or structure such as an airbase or bridge.

Depending on which campaign you have chosen and which difficulty settings, there is a good chance that your ground forces are quite limited. So be careful with using this feature. Don't send them headlong in to a strong enemy position. Use interdictions to clear the road ahead when possible. Failing to open the way could see your advance stall as the leading elements are damaged or destroyed in ground combat.
Posted By: - Ice

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 02/06/17 03:19 PM

Posted By: DBond

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 02/06/17 03:24 PM

Does that mean you like the read or that you're waiting for the flame war?
Posted By: - Ice

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 02/06/17 03:32 PM

Hahaha... that's my bookmark. I hate reading this thread, if I'm honest. I'm starting to hate you as well. Do you know how quickly you are wearing down my resistance to my years and years of conviction of not flying with an AI?? Do you know how much I want to start my own campaign using this thread as a guide?? I have a life, y'know!! pitchafit

Wife: "Oh, you're starting a campaign? You've not done that in ages."
Me: "Yeah, there's this dude on SimHQ, making this God-forsaken thread...."
Wife: "Sure..."

Posted By: DBond

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 02/06/17 03:46 PM

Haha, well you asked for it wave

I hope you do get a campaign going. I would really like to hear how it goes. I'd really like to see more folks getting involved here and posting their experiences. This campaign system is so amazingly awesome.

I can't help with the Wife Battalion though. Those are damn hard to evade. Go dark and low I'd say...
Posted By: - Ice

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 02/06/17 04:33 PM

Indeed I have. I just didn't realize the effect would be this much. biggrin Good thing I'm still tweaking and testing my gaming rig... next up will be some training then some campaigns! I do look forward to posting my blunders here for people to laugh at and correct smile

As for the Commander-in-Chief, so long as I file a proper flight plan and allocate proper flight hours, I should be in clear skies all the way biggrin
Posted By: DBond

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 02/06/17 06:38 PM

Your C-in-C is one of the good ones then. thumbsup for Mrs Ice. I had to get rid of mine. She said it's either Eff-4 or me!

"Snake Three-One, Osan tower, you are cleared for takeoff, Runway Two-Seven"

Honey? Oh well, it's for the best biggrin

Ya know, the more I think about it the more I look forward to you giving it a go. You obviously know a lot about flying Falcon, so to see you put that to use in the campaign would be interesting. In some ways I envy you because it's like a new experience for you (discounting any campaigns you have done).
Posted By: - Ice

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 02/06/17 09:06 PM

I've done the first two campaigns, but mostly on an A-G role, and this was when Allied Force first came out. A **LOT** of things have happened since then so when I start again, it may as well be the first time smile Like I said, I usually never bothered with what the ATO generated and only really edited my flight loadout and route to be sure I was safe. Definitely NOTHING about controlling ground troops and also NOTHING about the bigger war picture.

I may take your approach when flying my campaign; document stuff and put it up for scrutiny. Best way to learn, right? Just finishing up the last few touches on my setup and I just might make that happen.

As for She-Who-Must-Be-Obeyed, well, I just stand clear and feed her chocolates and take her for a "walk" on shopping malls so she has come to terms with my hobby. It wasn't like that at first. "Oh, you bought a new game? No, no, go ahead and have fun, enjoy your new game." I would be in the dog house for a week or two biggrin She has since learned that when I say I'm going for a flight, she knows EXACTLY where I am, EXACTLY what I'm doing, and can hear EXACTLY who I talk to and what we talk about. She's had a few friends who are no longer with their husbands/partners because the guy said one thing and did another wink

She now actually likes to talk about how I did with my practice flights.... which usually consists of just doing some A-A refuelling. So when the tanker goes "Contact!", I'll get an echo of "Contact!!" from the next room. biggrin
Posted By: DBond

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 02/06/17 11:49 PM

Well I hope that if you do start a campaign some of the stuff we've posted here proves useful.

About the ground troops.... in the Tiger Spirit campaign I made extensive use of that feature. If you were following along you know that I was misguided as to the actual BMS objectives until almost day four. Quite frankly I wonder if the AI would have taken them in time without my guidance. You only get five days to complete both Tiger Spirit and Iron Fortress. I'm not confident that campaign would have ended in a victory otherwise.

In this Rolling Fire though I've done it very little, and we've already taken Wonsan on day four. You get all of thirty days! to finish this one. That said I move a lot of air defense units, and I got involved to take all of Kaesong. But otherwise the AI has kept Blue rolling north. Part of it might be that I have been heavy on the interdictions and there has been virtually no actual ground combat so far. So Blue runs in to no resistance and keeps going. God bless the A-10 smile
Posted By: DBond

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 02/08/17 12:35 PM

Today's post was going to cover using Air Mobile missions to transport units. You can use Air Mobile in BMS, but unless I am mistaken you can only lift airborne/special forces. Fair enough. In AF you could put a Patriot battery on four Blackhawks smile

But that is clearly unrealistic and BMS is more restricted.

Victory: The Red Regret

The player is given 30 days to complete Rolling Fire. Sometimes, if you get involved in the campaign planning, things can go a little faster....

Victory on day 4. It ended before I covered everything I wanted to. I didn't expect it to go so well, but it all fell in to place. China and Russia both joined the war in the last 24 hours, which made things a lot more interesting. But not enough and Blue tanks rolled down mainstreet in Pyongyang. I would say that they are now regretting their decision to invade biggrin

Posted By: DBond

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 02/08/17 04:17 PM

BMS 4.33 Rolling Fire Analysis

As I'm fairly new to BMS, it was an interesting experience playing this campaign. I just want to post some random thoughts and observations about the campaign.

The start is the same as ever. The frontline is along the 38th parallel and the HART line. Rolling Fire is the most plausible of the standard campaigns. It most closely mirrors the situation should war break out today. Tiger Spirit assumes that Blue has already played through a Rolling Fire scenario and made good. Iron Fortress assumes the Red attack in a Rolling Fire scenario was successful in pushing Blue forces back.

I played the KTO theater. OpAir was a fairly pedestrian collection of Red aircraft from previous generations. The most common aircraft are MiG-23, MiG-29A, Su-25, MiG-21, MiG-19, MiG-17 and Mi-8 and MD-500 helos. Lots of helos. The MiG-23s were serious opponents, and I had to be very careful around them. The rest are only dangerous close-in. There is a huge difference in threat level between a Fulcrum-A and a Fulcrum-S. The S is a very dangerous opponent indeed.

China and Russia joining the war ups the ante big time. They bring MiG-31, Su-30, Su-27, MiG-29S, Tu-16 and more. For the record, China joined the war on day 3 at 1815 hours, Russia followed the following morning. Not exactly sure what the triggers are, but clearly taking Wonsan was one, and China joined at the same time Wonsan was captured.

One thing I found interesting about the MiG-23s. On day one they were seemingly everywhere. They were flying mostly out of Hyon-Ni and Wonsan. By day two we had cleared the skies and knocked out a few bases. The MiG-23s disappeared. For good. I didn't see a single MiG-23 after that. Strange.

SAM units seem more crafty than what I had been used to in previous versions of Falcon. They seem to use ambush tactics, but it could be my perception. But there were many times that I was flying along with a dark RWR and suddenly I'm lit up and fired on from a SAM site quite close and well within range. Cool.

Blue Air is about what you might expect. There are no 5th generation jets. You have many F-16s, there were ten squadrons deployed by the time the campaign ended for me. Five Block 52, three Block 40, and one each of 50 and 32. The carrier group arrived on day two and houses F/A-18 C,E and F plus Hawkeyes and Prowlers. Also available are F-5, F-4, F-15E, AH-1, A-10 (god bless 'em) and more. 'Missing' are B-52, F-15C, F-22, F-14, F-117, B-2, AH-64 among others. Interestingly, F-15C, F-117 and B-2 are in Tiger Spirit, but not in RF, or at least by day Four. E-3, E-2 and E-8 are all in as well.

There is a version of the KTO included in BMS with a stronger Red plane set, replacing some of the older aircraft with more modern ones. No changes are made to Blue so it has the effect of significantly narrowing the technological gap.

When China and Russia joined they made an all-out effort to target our carrier group. The ATO did not frag a single mission to CAP the carrier. I guarantee if I hadn't done so we would have lost it. So be sure to do the same if you wish to avoid that fate. F/A-18s are excellent though, and can carry a hell of a lot of missiles. We (virtual) Viper drivers can only be jealous of the loadout they can carry. So whenever possible I fragged F/A-18s to stand CAP 70 miles north of the carrier group, loaded down with slammers. I fragged four-ships and gave them hour-and-a-half vulnerability times. That reduces by triple the number of CAPs needed to frag (default station time is 30 minutes). in order to keep continuous coverage.

A-10 Thunderbolt II. Warthog. The weapon that won the war. These things are Amazing with a capital A. By the end of the war the 25th attack squadron had knocked out about 5000 ground units. Fragging these aircraft to sweep the roads was so effective as to border on the ridiculous. Blue ground was able to roll virtually unhindered by Red ground forces. All aircraft contributed, but the A-10s were the star of the show. Just devastating.

Supply. I talked about it earlier, and perhaps it's just the fact that four days isn't enough to see the effect, but there was no discernible difference in supply, or the supply graphs after having destroyed every single strategic target south of Sinanju. I'll always target these in campaigns I fly, but I wonder if it has any effect at all. If it does, it must be later in the campaign. If a Rolling Fire drags on for 3 weeks maybe the effect would be obvious?

This campaign is still a good one, as it's always been. The Red OoB however, keeps the challenge down to very manageable levels. By the time modern fighters arrive the campaign is as good as won. If you're looking for a stiffer challenge be sure to fly the Strong KTO theater instead.

And I'll throw this out there. I would be very interested in a report or two from a player who runs this campaign and doesn't get involved at all in the planning. He should still fly, and fly well, but I would love to see the difference in results in a completely hands-off KTO Rolling Fire. I know that after reading all of the great tips in this thread that no one will ever fly hands-off again haha, but just in case someone does let me know how it goes.

Posted By: DBond

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 02/09/17 02:16 PM

First, a couple of corrections, then I want to talk a little bit about the Iron Fortress campaign.

Earlier I said that challenge rating mostly affects force ratios of squadrons, so the higher you set the rating, the fewer planes Blue squadrons will have and conversely the more Red will have. In the past, that is the way it worked. But BMS is different and challenge rating seems to not affect this. Or not so drastically anyway. In AF, Red Viper and original Falcon, Ace rating would mean 12 aircraft in Blue squadrons and 24 in Red. Vet was 18 Blue and whatever the 'normal' setting is was 24.

Another error was that I claimed in Iron Fortress that Red is on the attack. Again, traditionally that has been the case, but in BMS it is different. In the stock KTO IF, Blue is on the attack.

I will make corrections in the earlier posts.

Speaking of Iron Fortress.... this campaign to me was always the true test of Falcon campaign mettle. The most challenging campaign in AF was certainly Ace 2010 Iron Fortress. Blue is really against it. Winning that campaign was the most satisfying. So I was excited to give it a go in BMS.

First time I loaded it up was in the standard KTO theater. I didn't expect to see what I saw. KTO IF in BMS is vastly different. Instead of being pushed back to the Pusan perimeter, Blue hold the entire bottom half of South Korea, giving them west coast bases (Kunsan). In addition, Blue is on the offensive. This isn't Iron Fortress! I played it for a while and came away disappointed. The action was lame. Three hours in and there wasn't a Red plane in the sky. My A-10s were running roughshod. Missions were being fragged to empty locations behind my lines. Frankly, it's a bit of a mess. It's the only time I can remember in 20 years of flying Falcon that I quit a campaign because I didn't like it. I didn't even know that was possible.

I fully support new campaigns of course, I cannot look a gift horse in the mouth. But this isn't Iron Fortress. It should have a different name. Call it Over the Ramparts, Sally Forth or something. Bring back Iron Fortress and have this campaign as an alternative.

I sat back in my chair, and I gotta say I was feeling a bit dejected. I had just finished Tiger Spirit and Rolling Fire. I had saved IF for last. I had been looking forward to it. No F4 campaign is embedded in my psyche quite like IF. And now it was gone. But then...

I decided to switch over to the Strong DPRK theater. I clicked IF and lookee there! It's the old Iron Fortress, with Blue backed in to the corner and Red on the roll. I immediately sat up, perked up and began fragging up. I joined the 80th FS flying good old Block 30s. If Iron Fortress is like it used to be, I'll be needed in the air to fight off the Wall 'O MiGs. Block 30s will do nicely. I added a bunch of Apache and Warthog interdictions along likely avenues of approach, essentially doubled the CAP for the next two hours since I don't trust the program to put up enough, and fragged myself a two-ship zero-time BARCAP.

But I had no idea just how FREAKIN' INSANE things were about to be. I'm serious. Never in all of my time flying this sim have I seen anything like the massive air battle that took place.

You like air-to-air in F4? Fire up a Strong IF and be sure you're airborne near the front by 1000 hours. And then post about what happened. There are Red aircraft everywhere. A nearby SA-10 was lobbing missiles in to the fray. There is no way that what I can write here in this forum could do justice to the sheer weight of insanity.

So if you take me up on this be sure to frag 4X the amount of defensive air that you think is overkill so that you might have a base to come home to. I'm pleased to say that my wingman and I both made it out, but that was surely down to lady luck and the fact that there were so many targets for each side that the enemy's attention just happened to fall elsewhere. So I was only fired on six times.

Sadly, I also got my first Fratricide in BMS. I never want this to happen, and I hoped to avoid it for a long time. But that blot is now on my logbook. I don't think I targeted a friendly. What I think occurred is that I had a slammer in the air before it was autonomous, the target was destroyed by another missile, and the slammer locked on to the next thing it saw, which was a friendly. So sorry old bean. Court Martial. Dammit. Maybe I screwed up. I could be forgiven in that maelstrom. There had to be forty or fifty missiles in the air at any given time. The radio was a constant pitbull, pitbull, pitbull for the 25 minutes I was out there.

It was late at night when I landed from this sortie so I had to shut it down. But Red aircraft are ranging all over Blue airspace. I criminally underestimated the intensity of the Red onslaught and my CAP was blown away. This should be good smile
Posted By: DBond

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 02/10/17 04:49 PM

Played the Iron Fortress campaign for a few more hours and got a better handle on the situation. Very little has been changed in the BMS Strong DPRK Theater version of IF, and that's a very good thing. The plane set has been significantly altered though. Red has alot of good 3rd/4th generation jets. MiG-23, MiG-27, Su-27/J-11, Su-30, MiG-29A/S. So this theater is much more challenging than the KTO. In addition they have a more modern bomber fleet, including Su-24 Fencers and Tu-16s.

As related, my initial setup was deficient and Red was able to gain superiority over the FLOT in the first two hours. They were able to knock out most of my forward air defenses including the only Patriot battery near Taegu. Ouch. They also hit several army bases, grounding some of my helo squadrons. But my airbases came through unscathed thankfully. With all Blue aircraft shoehorned in to just four bases, losing any one base would be a disaster. To help settle that debt I knocked out the Flap Lid that caused so much grief on the first mission by flying a high show and launching from 30,000 and 50 miles.

As ever, in Iron Fortress the situation on the ground is critical. The Red armor is thisclose to your forward units. I got Apaches, Commanches and 'Hogs off the ground within minutes and we were able to blunt their attack, but there is still a lot of weight behind the leading units so it's far from settled. I said earlier that it would be difficult to lose a F4 campaign, but if it's going to happen, it would be in Iron Fortress. I don't think a hands-off player would have success in this one (at Vet or Ace anyway)

Iron Fortress rocks. This campaign really shows the complexity of the F4 dynamic campaign. Everything is concentrated in to the Pusan perimeter. The density and intensity are very high and it's good fun to fly in this campaign.

This shot shows my landing approach on Kimhae One-Six after the first mission I flew in Iron Fortress. I spent so much time in 'burner that I used up all of my JP-4. Check that fuel gauge. Plenty left smile

Posted By: DBond

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 02/11/17 12:39 PM

This is what you don't want to see. Red aircraft roaming around your own airspace. I am struggling in this campaign and I'm really trying. We are losing alot of aircraft.

And a shot showing a pair of Vipers, out of spears and heading home.

Posted By: schnidrman

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 02/11/17 09:24 PM

I would be fragging some serious DCA. Can't fly jets w/o a runway.

Posted By: DBond

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 02/11/17 09:37 PM

That's just it. I did exactly that. Trust me it was a serious defensive air effort. They've just been wiped out in the screenshot.

The buggers knocked out Taegu. A-10s are based there. Not good. And I don't have any engineers....
Posted By: DBond

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 02/18/17 04:09 PM

This thread hasn't taken off like I had hoped, but there is still time... smile

I don't want it to die, so I'll keep yapping. Just finished my third campaign (in 3 weeks lol). I've finished a Vet and Ace KTO Tiger Spirit, and a Vet KTO Rolling Fire. The second TS went much faster than the first, ending in victory at 0830 of Day 3.

I started and put on hold a Strong DRPK Ace Iron Fortress, but that one's a #%&*$#. I wasn't exactly losing, but wasn't really winning either. It was sort of even, and I lost a hell of a lot of planes. That's the hardest F4 campaign I've played. Might try again with a lower challenge rating.

Looking at other theaters. Interested in Balkans and Israel for starters. Will be installing the U3 update to BMS this weekend and then will start getting some new theaters.

In the meantime I am playing a Ace KTO Rolling Fire. But a little differently than usual. This one I am playing as a Squadron Commander in honor of my recent promotion to Major. I kinda wanted to stay a Captain. Not a nobody like a Lieutenant and not a D-Bag like a Major lol. And Majors don't command squadrons, Lt. Colonels and Colonels do. But there's a war on don'tcha know?

What this means is that I am in full control of my squadron (Block 40 36th FS, Osan AB, Set by HQ box off), but I am not touching anything else (aside from PAKS and sliders and CCCI missions). Oh my god it's tough. I have to exercise much self-control to keep from getting involved. Red aircraft roaming around knocking out bridges and frontline units. It's so hard to resist! But what is has shown me is that flying campaigns you are fully involved in is much safer than letting the computer run things, that's for sure. Having MiG-29s capping your own base is interesting biggrin
Posted By: - Ice

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 02/18/17 07:59 PM

Originally Posted By: DBond
This thread hasn't taken off like I had hoped, but there is still time... smile

I don't want it to die, so I'll keep yapping.

Be careful what you wish for!! When I start my campaign, I'll be picking your brains a lot, so just be glad I'm not there yet!! biggrin
Posted By: DBond

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 02/19/17 04:09 AM

Yeah, what's the hold up? At this rate you'll be flying your first campaign mission online with us.
Posted By: DBond

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 03/22/17 01:55 PM

I'm back after a month-long enforced absence due to dead mobo-itis. With the new box back up and purring I finally got around to installing U3 and then downloaded and installed the Balkans theater for BMS 4.33.3


That's a full installer, which is nice.

If you've flown Allied Force you're probably familiar with this theater (or if you're just not a BMS-noob like me). All three of the campaigns from AF are included. It's a great change of pace from the KTO. The terrain is more interesting and varied. The planeset introduces aircraft you won't find in BMS KTO. Tornados, Galebs, J-22s. In addition, there are aircraft flown by both Blue and Red, such as the MiG-21 which can lead to some interesting situations and adds a twist your situational awareness..

I started off with Balance of Power, which is sort of the Balkans version of Rolling Fire. In BoP, the forces start evenly matched in numbers. Red has much more territory and begins the campaign on the offensive. I cannot say with what aircraft types Red will be reinforced, but at the start the Red OoB is fairly benign. You'll face mostly G-4s, J-22s, MiG-21s and MiG-29As. Fulcrum-As can be dangerous, but they really aren't a match for slammer-loaded Vipers. So it's a relatively survivable theater.

In my campaign I was prosecuting air operations in the Bihac region. The Reds had a very strong concentration of armor and infantry arrayed around the airfield there. While flying a mission in support of this operation I spotted and then took out a SA-6's Straight Flush. These SAM systems I rank second only to the SA-10 in terms of lethality in F4. They are nasty. So while the aircraft you face may not be cutting edge, there is still plenty to get your attention. In addition, there seems to be more varied IR SAM systems, and low level in the Balkans is a very dangerous place indeed.

Unfortunately, it appears that the issues with the ATO properly assigning defensive air coverage still exist. It never worked in AF, and my brief experience with the BMS version shows it appears to still be the case. Unless the player does a ton of fragging here, there will be insufficient or non-existent CAP coverage throughout the theater.

My favorite airfield in all of F4 is in this theater, and that's Split along the Adriatic coast in Croatia. My old wingman Axe and I used to fly in to this field just for the challenge of landing there from the east. If you haven't had the pleasure, you have to try this at least once smile
Posted By: theOden

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 03/22/17 02:59 PM

Yes, trusty old Balkans.

I just yesterday grabbed a "OMA 3.6" Balkans theater some guys run online on a 24/7 server but after launching 3 attempts only to bump straight back to debriefing I'm going to put that one aside and give this "official" a go.

Balkans is, as you say, rather tough for us mud movers - low level AAA and SAM makes NOE a no go pretty much and my first attempt last time (prev. autumn) flying Danish MLU's down the coast I got slapped in the face by SA-10's flying high. Actually became a bit much for my level so I moved back to Korea.

As I write this I'm downloading the u3 version you linked (hats off for that smile ) and will give this a go again the coming evenings.

Balkans is also where I learned to hate SA-6 systems smile but also got my biggest Falcon moments running away from target area chased by SA-6 missiles (both in AF and BMS). Almost getting pumped up just looking back at those moments haha.
Posted By: DBond

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 03/22/17 03:19 PM

Hey there Oden. Yes, I recommend you give it a go. It's a 1.5 gig download and the installer makes it a snap. We are in agreement then about the low level stuff, it is quite dangerous indeed. I'd be very interested in flying this one online. You mentioned a dedicated campaign server. Is it public? Do you know of any others?

I said in the Odyssey thread that the two weapons systems that have shot me down more than all others combined are the MiG-29S and the SA-6. Man that thing is nasty. It never shows up on JSTARS, and usually doesn't show up on your RWR until it's shooting at you. In the example I related above, I had put so many aircraft in to the Bihac AO that it was lit when I arrived and I fired a HARM that missed and a second that put the light out. Take that you bastage!

Perhaps we can fly together some time? You fly F4 campaigns online, any interest in joining the SimHQ crew when we get this up and running?
Posted By: theOden

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 03/22/17 05:01 PM

We should fly online together, all SimHQ'ers smile
Only but's I have is that I usually get pretty TimeZone'd sitting here in Sveedenland (CET +1) but maybe a late late friday/saturday for me could match you mericans.

the online server I found was in this thread (page 9 is the latest OMA 3.6) https://www.bmsforum.org/forum/showthread.php?26386-Flight-Fence-In-Server-Online-h24/page9

But there is also Falcon-Online with Archer/Magic and folks, really good people (both personas and skillset) but they used to go too much Force-on-Force for a SP flyer like me that at best can stretch to a Coop Online smile
Think I have seen them do coop sessions too lately but I have been all DCS AJS Viggen (being a swede and all, pure christmas party) running Falcon on sparsely selected evening hours.

Let us keep the Coop Online though alive smile
Posted By: DBond

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 03/22/17 05:53 PM

Yes, completely understand if you're in to the Viggen at the moment. If I were Swedish I would be too.
Posted By: DBond

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 03/23/17 01:23 PM

A couple of notes about things I said earlier. Split airfield is called Kastela Airport in this version of the Balkans. I didn't fly there yet, as it's too far behind the current front lines. But I did recon it and panned around to the northeast. From that perspective the terrain doesn't look daunting at all. No worse than Kangnung from the west. In AF it was a steep slope you had to drop down to get on the flat bit. Perhaps it will be different in the 3D.

I mentioned that SA-6 doesn't show on the JSTARS. Well, I noticed in this theater there are no JSTARS at all. Maybe as reinforcements later. But none at the outset.

As for my campaign...I've flown a half dozen missions or so, it's about 1600 hours on day one. The Reds have a mass of armor and troops along the FLOT. Especially around Bihac. Once we've broken through there it should be a bit of a blitzkreig toward Mostar and Banja Luka. Without JSTARS I cannot say what is backing up the front line positions, but I cannot imagine that they have much in the way. We shall see.

It's been years since I've played this campaign. Does anyone recall if Blue gets a carrier group in Balance of Power? This is also the campaign that had a US Marine amphibious landing near Mostar in AF. I wonder if this is the same?
Posted By: theOden

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 03/23/17 10:00 PM

Alright, all warmed up with a few TE runs I got myself into a Balkans PowderKeg (easiest) crossing Adriatic Sea from southern Italy into Macedonia just north of Albania.

22nd FS from an airbase I can't for the love of God remember the weird name of.
DEAD mission hunting one of very few known SA-3 Sites.
Got some 10 miles in over Yugoslavia ordering wingman to engage an SA-3 site we need to cross to reach target area and a swift "rejoin" as soon as I heard the Magnum call.

All good.

Suddenly an SA-6 blink on RWR and corresponding alarm.
I bank my block 50 and can easily spot the SA-6 trails, ECM on, Chaff (program 1) and break hard left into missile.


Well, that was not a good start.
Not sure why but Balkans really really hates me.

Will retry tomorrow with the help of a few friday beers.
Posted By: DBond

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 03/23/17 10:14 PM

It's those damn Gainfuls! We were just talking about how they suck. They ambush. It's a really difficult missile to defeat. Hard to drag it, hard to evade or spoof. . A seriously tough opponent. As i said that is the ground weapon system that has shot me down most often in my F4 career. No shame in getting hit by one of those. Hope to hear your beer-soaked AAR smile
Posted By: DBond

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 03/24/17 01:25 PM

So there I was....

I flew a strike mission out of Brnik (Block 50/22nd FS) to hit the gas plant northeast of Zagreb. Loaded four slammers, two 9x and two -84s. Ingress was uneventful and I really shacked the target in a 30 degree CCIP drop. Pickled the pair with 444 feet interval. Destroyed every structure at the facility in this pass. Took some AAA coming off target, which missed. With the rails still full of missiles I headed south toward Bihac and Udbina. Picked up a pair of Fulcrum-A's and turned to intercept.

At about 20 miles they must have picked me up and they turned toward. At 14 miles I fired at the lead ship. I transitioned to TWS and at 9 miles I fired at the wingman who had offset to the northeast (left), while I lost sight of the leader. I watched number two explode in a fireball and I initiated a turn to find the leader. I swung the nose about 30 degrees while frantically scanning outside when wham!. I instinctively reached for the Oh Sh!t handle and wham! Dead.

The camera showed the MiG, smoking, but alive. I had hit him but didn't knock him down. He had then flown past at the merge while I was tracking his wingman. He got around behind me and fired two Archers, both of which hit and killed me. I've been shot down a number of times since getting in to BMS, but this was my first death. Had to happen sooner or later. The ironic thing is I was shot down and killed by a MiG-29A, the same airframe I had dismissed as little threat a few posts back.

Posted By: theOden

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 03/24/17 08:24 PM

Originally Posted by DBond
... Hope to hear your beer-soaked AAR smile

Hell yeah!
Friday beer is the way to fly it seems.

Retry on previous failure went alot smoother, as usual when one puts a little more effort into this magnificant game-sim.

This time I didn't just fly the laid out steerpoints but added the minor effort of actually looking at the map and adjusting the path to avoid big cities (that's where the SA-6 killed me last time) and airbases.

This gave me quite a narrow corridor crossing the coast but a fairly open space inbound target.

Also adding some alititude from the suggested 22kft and choose to cruise at 26kft - each thousand ft gives me a little extra from bandits trying to intercept us, two airfields, one each side this town I dearly dislike nowadays will most surely launch intercept attempts at my flight (seen a bunch MiG-21 roaring the skies last time).

Just as we reached the first dogleg going north of the town'of'horrors this time I asked wingman to engage the SA-3 in said town, just like last time, but this time just as I called rejoin on his "Magnum" that darn SA-6 showed up on my HAD and I just couldn't direct my wingman to target that son'o'b.. soon enough - my joy seeing that 6 disappear from the HAD soon after was given another zip of beer, I tell you smile

Saving my two 88's for the main target of the mission I had my wingman go "clear my six" and felt muh more optimistic moving in over main this time around.

Un-opposed I could unleash my HARM's on the target area airbase SA-3 site. After my first Magnum the little bollock went all red on my HAD so I decided to launch my second HARM too - rightly so as it later showed that my first actually missed but that tracking status was all my 2nd HARM needed.

Question: Do we need to wait for tracking status before launching HARM nowadays or is it still good enough to just see the number on the HAD? Just curious as my first missed, could be a coincidence I guess.

Loaded with 4 slammers I was hoping for a few 21's to show up flying back but never got anyone in my scope - AWACS sure reported a handful hostiles close to my bullseye for fellow Hornets but I was happy enough to have accomplished my mission so I never stretched my luck looking for them too much but kept my altitude for a safe ride home (to that base with a name I just can't get into my head)

Saved Campaign and will run another flight soon, just need to air-refuel in my fridge.

Btw, I met two flights (Tornado and Hornet) very close on my long leg back over the Adriatics - This thing is so alive! And all chatter from other flights engaging targets of all kinds - and other reports of course! Gotta love Falcon Campaign Environment!
Posted By: DBond

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 03/24/17 10:10 PM

Retribution. Nicely done! The more SA-6s we take out the better, and that's now two between us smile

You don't need to have the radar tracking for a HARM shot, because I've hit plenty that were not. But it does increase the hit probability. On the SA-6 I hit two days ago it was same as you. First missile missed, second took it out.
Posted By: DBond

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 03/25/17 01:06 PM

My BoP has completed day one and Blue has launched an offensive toward Zadar (well actually across the whole front, but that's what it says). I fooled around with the weather a bit and now have gusty weather with restricted visibiilty, a little misty and cumulus with the tops around 10,000.

Check out this thread for some options to customize the weather in BMS.

Posted By: DBond

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 03/30/17 12:59 PM

My Balance of Power campaign continues on. Things are going qute well. I must say this is a great campaign for a hands-on player. Because firstly, the ATO handling of defensive air coverage is abysmal, so a hands-on player will be able to mitigate that.

Secondly, Blue gets a hell of a lot of aircraft reinforcements. There are so many different aircraft types. In KTO Rolling Fire for example, Blue has maybe a 20 different aircraft to play with. But in Balkans BoP, it seems to be every aircraft type in the game. Makes it fun and interesting to run the air war. Both sides begin with just under 300 aircraft according to the Intel. By the middle of day two, Blue has expanded to over 700, more than doubling. A carrier group arrives and you even get a second A-10 squadron!

In my campaign the clock has just turned to day three. Blue has taken Banja Luka already which is good progress indeed. The advance along the Adriatic coast is lagging behind however, so attacks are being concentrated along this front to clear the way. I transferred from the 22nd at Brnik to the 78th at Palese. I am running my own little Italian campaign and keeping this front going. The ATO will not frag any defensive air here, so me doing so is quite beneficial to stop the Red incursions.

I'm really enjoying this Balkans theater. I got shot down again, by, you guessed it, a SA-6. I was zipping along at 300 ft AGL post-strike on a target near Belgrade (yeah I know, but what fun!) and that thing nailed me. Hate those damn SAMs!

Posted By: theOden

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 03/30/17 03:49 PM

Oh those pesky SA-6's!
Did you have a SA6 lock on you or did they shoot by visual?
Sometimes I get this feeling those Gainfuls are overpowered (but then I realize I am a rather mediocre pilot haha)
Good work reaching Belgrade, quite a ride I guess.
Posted By: DBond

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 03/30/17 04:03 PM

I didn't notice a lock, just the launch warning. I pulled 9G in to it but it still got me and I was quite low when it was fired. I was quite surprised to be honest.

I ran low level all the way from Palese to Belgrade without issue, dropped some BSU-50 on the target, but I must have taken a slightly different route coming home.
Posted By: DBond

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 03/31/17 04:54 AM

I remember when I flew AF, if I was lucky, I might see bad weather. Campaigns always started clear and calm, and if the campaign lasted long enough, or if the Falcon gods chose to grant you this gift, the weather would get worse, sometimes even getting completely socked in. So soupy that you could only see to about your wingtip. Needless to say, this makes things a bit more interesting, but was all too rare. It affects target and weapon selection not to mention makes navigation and operating around the base more challenging. Weather is an absolutely integral facet of air operations, but which flight sims have a good weather system? That list is short.

So I wanted to explore the weather system in BMS. I've only flown in good weather so far, no worse than fair, which might have a bit of turbulence here and there, some scattered cumulus and haze, but doesn't add any additional challenge or decision making in the campaign. That was good as I got back in to F4, but I feel ready for some stormy stuff. I posted about it over at the BMS forum, seeking guidance on how I could get my atmosphere on. I wanted to start generating weather that was variable and unpredictable, and that changed from location to location.


I had fooled around with the different settings in BMS. Probabilistic, deterministic etc, but have no clue what I'm doing. I do know that the weather never got bad, over several campaigns that lasted up to five campaign days. After getting some advice in that thread I decided to try the WeatherGen program by Tyrant.


And it's great program. In just a few minutes I was able to generate a new weather map for my BoP campaign. I kept clicking random until the weather near my base was lousy and saved it. Loaded it to the campaign and fragged a mission. Stepped to the jet to find a solid overcast with rain. Forecast for the target area was improving. Not knowing exactly what to expect over the former republic of Yugoslavia, I made a simple BARCAP with a HTS and a couple of HARMs. This loadout is good even if the cloud deck is solid over the target. Unfortunately, my campaign is currently at night. I snapped a couple of shots, but I'll need to wait for dawn to get some good ones.

The whole mission I kept reminding myself to check the debrief to see what the wind velocity was. But of course upon landing I had completely forgotten. But it was stiff no doubt. Takeoff was only slightly more drift than usual, as I was more or less in to it. But as I turned right (east) coming out of Palese, I got in to the crosswind. Check the FPM here, almost off the HUD. The rain doesn't show well in the screenshot, it's there, but hard to spot.

[Linked Image]

I climbed out to 25,000, entering the clouds at 7,000 and breaking out around 12,000, and turned north, in to the wind. At that altitude and at full mil, I was barely clocking 270 knots. To test how much effect that was, I turned back to the east, and without advancing the throttle the Viper accelerated to 370 knots. So cool. As I neared the coast I shot down three J-22s and the cloud deck began to break up. As I flew further north, it became much nicer with calming winds and broken cumulus. This is what I wanted. And it's amazing. Big thanks to Tyrant, who not only made this cool program, but has been very helpful to me as well. I still don't really understand it all, but the fact I could easily generate an awesome campaign environment in just a few clicks is fantastic.

The landing was epic, as the FPM at times was off the HUD, just a little X in the corner thumbsup

Here you see the improving weather in the target area. Again, apologies for the nighttime shots, but there's a war on ya know.

[Linked Image]

Attached picture F4windTO.jpg
Attached picture F4target.jpg
Posted By: - Ice

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 03/31/17 11:33 AM

Did you know you can call Tower to check which is the active runway and where the wind is coming from? Then again, you can also have that on the DED.

Cool mission, how'd you do?
Posted By: DBond

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 03/31/17 12:34 PM

I do yes, and I use both of those. I actually used the landing runway call on the mission you and I flew the other day, not that you could have heard that biggrin I'm not seeing how that may have helped me or made a difference. Can you expound?

I did just fine on this mission. It is the early hours of day three in a Vet BoP campaign. Frankly, the Red airforce is smashed and much of the map has been sanitized. The threat rings you see in the HSD are largely remnants from earlier in the campaign. After downing the J-22s, I made landfall and continued north waiting for something to light up. There was a search radar and a SA-3 very close to the Albanian border, but I withheld fire in case they might be friendly.

Eventually a ZSU-23 lit me up and was taken out. Then further north toward Belgrade a Flat Face radar from an SA-3 battery ate an ARM. I turned back toward Palese and landed with one slammer still hanging. 3 air kills and two ground kills. Total mission time 1 hour. But the weather made it one of my most memorable missions since I've gotten back in to Falcon thumbsup
Posted By: ricnunes

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 03/31/17 06:28 PM

Hi DBond,

Nice and cool screenshots and mission report!
Actually I have a similar problem where I never get "bad weather" like what you got on the screenshots - I'm using Probabilistic weather of Falcon.

I guess I have to use one of those "Weather Generators" (never used one before to be honest).
Posted By: DBond

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 03/31/17 06:42 PM

Originally Posted by ricnunes

I guess I have to use one of those "Weather Generators" (never used one before to be honest).

It's too easy. Click the weathergen link I posted. It's all browser based, nothing to install.

These are the directions I was given that I used to create that stormy stuff

- Under "Load/Save", enter the mission name or (easier) click the folder icon to load the campaign file.
- Under "Weather Parameters", click "Random" until you see something you like.
- Under "Load/Save", click "Save Package"
- Unzip the resulting zip file into your Campaign\SAVE folder.

I loaded my .cam file and then clicked random until I saw a big red blob near Palese. Under 'Display Controls' choose your map (Korea, Balkans, Israel, etc) and you can change the overlays to show the map so you see where your base is.

Once I had the red blob (bad weather) I just clicked Save Package and it generated a zip file. Just unzip the contents of that zip in to your campaign save folder and fire up F4. Check the box in the weather section in BMS that enables auto map updating and you're good to go.

Posted By: ricnunes

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 03/31/17 07:36 PM

Thanks for the heads up DBond.
Posted By: - Ice

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 03/31/17 09:01 PM

Originally Posted by DBond
I do yes, and I use both of those. I actually used the landing runway call on the mission you and I flew the other day, not that you could have heard that biggrin I'm not seeing how that may have helped me or made a difference. Can you expound?

Originally Posted by DBond
The whole mission I kept reminding myself to check the debrief to see what the wind velocity was. But of course upon landing I had completely forgotten.


I remember doing a mission with bad weather... takeoff was challenging, but when I broke through the weather, it was fine. I then dropped 4 GBUs from altitude and RTB'ed. Landing was challenging and had to use the ILS... quite a relief once you see the runway lights. I really liked using the GBUs after that... no loitering required like with LGBs, plus you can drop all 4 in one pass with some fancy ICP work.
Posted By: theOden

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 03/31/17 09:49 PM

Just went far into hostile territory, two bags really needed, for a DEAD on a AAA battalion.
Map was pretty empty so I switched the HARM's for 2x2 CBU87 for me and the wingman.
Should give better results on a AAA battalion.

Escort in package was two Hornets.

Kept the speed "carrot" well centered all the way and with that the Escort (put in on datalink 5 and 6) was always nearby.

Ground Radar showed the Classic "line" of units in a 10-4 o'clock line once we reached target area so I Went right to line up for a ripple x4 CBU pass in one go.
There was this SA-2 nearby but was expecting that one to keep silent on this distance. If not, it should be easy to Dodge.

Downed by an SA-6 launching 3 missiles at me when I was running in, never stood a chance.

Lesson Learned: Do not trust the map (even though I knew that) and bring those 88 when heading into an unknown area first time.

Could I have killed the SA-6 or would I've been ambushed again like the previous time I got one of those up my belly? Not sure but this mission was a pure disaster.

My "easy" Campaign is not going well but I will keep at it to show you guys there is always someone flying worse than you smile
Posted By: - Ice

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 03/31/17 10:29 PM

Small nitpick... "carrot" -> "caret" biggrin

Any pics?
Posted By: theOden

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 03/31/17 10:34 PM

haha Ice, I know I know but since we always "chase" it we started to call it the carrot (my sub-par falconeers and I).
No pics sadly, I always plan to but once I get in hot I most often totally forget to slap that printscreen key.
I will try to remember to the next sortie.
Posted By: - Ice

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 04/01/17 12:29 AM

Ah, if you put it that way, *"carrot" does make sense!
Posted By: DBond

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 04/01/17 02:21 AM

Another post about weather. I'm loving it. I fragged a strike mission near Podgorica, armed with a pair of 2000 pound JDAMs, two slammers and two 9x. Took two bags as well. I set the ToT to have takeoff near dawn. Let's go on little weather tour, shall we? The storm has blown through and I took off into this

[Linked Image]

Over the Adriatic there was a solid overcast, the bottoms about 12,000. I started to climb through it, but since I had two wing tanks I stayed below. Without them I would have needed to climb out to stretch the fuel. The SAM threat in the target area has been neutralized. Plus I wanted to see the weather below, not just sled on a field of snow above. As we approach the coast of Montenegro, the weather seems to be clearing just a bit.

[Linked Image]

Sure enough, as we continue north toward the IP it's looking better. That's Tivat right 3 low.

[Linked Image]

For the record, I dropped the two JDAMs on the target, damaging the plant and destroying a tower. Enemy aircraft didn't make an appearance. So I got a tower. That should slow them down.

Heading back to base, approaching the coast

[Linked Image]

Here you can actually see the weather front

[Linked Image]

The proverbial hole in the clouds

[Linked Image]

The coast of Italy as I approach Palese

[Linked Image]

Back down on the deck it looks like a nice typical sunny Italian morning.

[Linked Image]

Attached picture takoff.jpg
Attached picture coastmontengro.jpg
Attached picture furtheron.jpg
Attached picture egress.jpg
Attached picture holeinclouds.jpg
Attached picture weatherfront.jpg
Attached picture italy.jpg
Attached picture sunshinehome.jpg
Posted By: theOden

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 04/01/17 10:11 AM

Since I dropped my dead-is-dead here is the 2nd attempt at above failure, now with pictures. smile


[Linked Image]

Clearly states there is a SA-6 nearby - my fault for not reading it first time.
Obviously, one has to be an active pilot reading, and understanding, the information given and preferrably edit the steerpoints in given flight plan.
I have to admit I way to often skip these rather important steps.

RAMP start

[Linked Image]

Waiting for ALIGN to blink along with Serpent 1 going somewhere with 6xAGM-65D and a handful of British Tornado F2's (none of them in my package)

Have lots of pictures from the ATC releasing us one-flight-by-one but trying to keep this compact you only get to see me leaving "Gioia Del Colle"

[Linked Image]

Fence In and arranging all basics I trigger the DLink to see if my Hornets are on time, and they show up just fine in green on the HSD:

[Linked Image]

Keeping the speed caret reasonably under control I should keep my Escort well in range should any bad guys approach us.

Getting closer to the coast I check for the avarage situation asking AWACS for a "Requst Picture".

[Linked Image]

As expected I get a "Picture Clear" in return.
Clearly we have the sky under control but I would not call it air-superiority yet, far from it as the SAM threat is still significant.

Reaching the coast passing the very airbase my previous mission had as target area chasing the last AAA assets:

[Linked Image]

There are 2 blue airmobile units south of the airbase making me keep a strict north of base only targets during that mission and as you can see on my right MFD the HAD still show their search radar and one AAA tracking radar - more job to be done here but I am waiting to see if those two air mobile units are going to eliminate these assets for me or not.

Check that RWR:

[Linked Image]

One difficult thing in Balkans is that we have friendly MiG-21's
Makes me very very nervous each time I meet them.
I am calling AWACS but getting that "all is good dude, keep sailing" I just cannot get rid of the feeling they might have missed that 21 despite their big black all-seeing-eye radome.

Anyhow, keep trucking on I get these AAA tracking radars locking me up:

[Linked Image]

But just a brief jammer in operating mode usually drops them off and if not so it seems to keep them from shooting, all calm at angels 25. Always something to do while playing the instrument-chess cruising at altitude.

Getting closer to target area you can see that SA-2 I was talking about:

[Linked Image]

I guess, should he fire at us it should be good enough to just extend from him for a few miles and should not pose a big problem, right?

Mission main target:

[Linked Image]

Locking up that AAA search radar and releasing my wingman on it trying to keep my HARM's available for extra targets.
Just later the AAA tracking radar woke up too and I gave my wingman that target too making him out of 88's and placing him in position for taking on any aerial threats should they show up.

Enter the Arena we have that darn SA-6 again. All red from the very start!

[Linked Image]

I mean, really - they used to start off in yellow search before.
within seconds he launched missiles at me like a mad man.

Locking him up and breaking hard left into his position I am trying to
1. disable the autopilot (should have long ago, my mistake)
2. get a view of the missiles and
3. pressing print screen

all at the very same time.

Let me assure you this did not end well, again.


[Linked Image]

What you see says all.
Another disaster.

I will fly this one more time with no picture-taking whatsoever and hopfully be able to continue this horrible horrible campaign soon after.

(pun intended)
Posted By: DBond

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 04/01/17 12:42 PM

Thanks for the AAR Oden, I love reading these. Too bad about the result, but the war against the SA-6s is now quite personal, don't you agree? Get that bastage!

I've been thinking about your comments earlier regarding the SA6 being overmodelled, and really, it has to be the case, doesn't it? That system hasn't been a serious threat in the real world since the Yom Kippur war or there abouts. It's also the weapon that downed Scott O'Grady if I recall correctly. So they aren't toothless. But your mission now makes 3 or 4 times you and I have been shot down by one in the past week or so. And nothing else has managed to do it. The SA-6 seems to be second only to the SATAN (SA-TEN, SA-10) in lethality in F4. And that doesn't seem right.

In your first shot (Ramp Start) at the base it seems that yours looks a lot better than mine. Better textures or something. Are you using any mods?

Looking forward to your revenge against that damn SA-6!

Posted By: theOden

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 04/01/17 12:46 PM

Originally Posted by DBond
.. but the war against the SA-6s is now quite personal, don't you agree? Get that bastage!

Very much so, yes!
Posted By: DBond

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 04/01/17 12:48 PM

I forgot to add that the MiG-21 thing is the main reason I transferred from Brnik to Palese, where the friendly -21s aren't flying. I got spooked too many times not knowing if the 21 on my RWR was friendly or not.
Posted By: theOden

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 04/01/17 12:54 PM

No mods or anything no, I do have nVidia settings on 16x Anisotrop and 8x AntiAlia besides full monty in Falcon4 settings:

[Linked Image]

I think I've read somewhere one should let Falcon do the Anisotrp. filtering all alone though.
But I've been wrong Before

Edit: Btw, I just love your SA-10 naming - will use!
Posted By: DBond

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 04/01/17 01:10 PM

Thanks muchly. Yes, I will have to try that. The grass and tarmac textures look better on your shots. Maybe the one on the deck at the end of my 'weather tour' post shows the difference.
Posted By: ricnunes

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 04/01/17 01:12 PM

Originally Posted by theOden
haha Ice, I know I know but since we always "chase" it we started to call it the carrot (my sub-par falconeers and I).
No pics sadly, I always plan to but once I get in hot I most often totally forget to slap that printscreen key.
I will try to remember to the next sortie.

Let me guess what was your flight's callsign:
- Rabbit 1
- Rabbit 2
- Rabbit 3
- Rabbit 4

By the way and once again, great reports and screenshots smile
Posted By: theOden

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 04/01/17 01:27 PM

haha ricnunes, if we had Frubles here you'd certainly have had some more right now smile

(maybe one can alter the callsigns in some textfile!)
Posted By: DBond

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 04/01/17 01:45 PM

Could always use Mission Commander to change the callsign to 'SA-6 Bait' or maybe 'SA-6 Magnet' Ooh, how about 'SA-6 Sponge'? biggrin
Posted By: theOden

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 04/01/17 01:55 PM

hahahaha I sure see some very good candidates right there!
Posted By: theOden

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 04/01/17 05:04 PM

Let me present, the most hated SA-6 search and track radar.

[Linked Image]

Well, at least the smoke plumes of it.

Long flight and oh so nice to hear that "Welcome Back" when contacting tower.

[Linked Image]

Nice to be back home.

Was put on orbit earlier and here you can see the two guys landing just before me, my wingman and some random Tornado F2

[Linked Image]

Killed that Straight Flush and tried to catch something I found on my HAD altering 15 and M, must have been a SA-15 but no success on that bugger

[Linked Image]

Feels good to save the campaign after all these tries.
(despite not flying dead-is-dead)
Posted By: DBond

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 04/01/17 08:17 PM

Now that's what I'm talking about. thumbsup
Posted By: - Ice

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 04/01/17 11:10 PM

My main issue with this sim is that the immersion is so good. Once I'm airborne, I'm in "work mode" and only on FENCE OUT do I slap my forehead for forgetting, yet again, to take screenshots. I guess I really need to map it to my HOTAS.

SA-10 being the worst SAM? I gotta try this out.
Posted By: DBond

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 04/02/17 12:11 AM

Well, others may disagree, but I think the SA-10 is the worst. Not only does it have Patriot-like range, you get no launch warning. So unless you are the sort of player that keeps hitting the '7' key to see what's inbound, you will be shot down pert quick by that system. At least with the SA-6 you get a launch warning. But you're so close to it when it fires, very little chance to drag it or evade it, at least for me.

Then there are the low level IR SAMs. SA-7s have shot me down a few times, and SA-14s too, since I got in to BMS. It seems especially deadly low level in the Balkans theater. I believe there are no SA-10s in Balance of Power, but a hell of a lot of SA-6.

If you want SA-10s, fly Either KTO Tiger Spirit, where you will find a freakin' line of them near Sinanju or Strong DRPK Iron fortress where the is one northwest of Taegu.
Posted By: - Ice

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 04/02/17 12:37 AM

What's a usual SA-10 defense system? Are there other SAM sites with/around it? I don't want to start a campaign for it, but the HARM TE does not have a -10. Any chance you guys can whip up a quick TE? ricnunes?
Posted By: DBond

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 04/02/17 01:18 AM

Originally Posted by - Ice
What's a usual SA-10 defense system? Are there other SAM sites with/around it?

In real life or the sim? For the former, that Hpasp dude would know. For the latter, no associated defense units.

I don't want to start a campaign for it

It was a fair try though, wasn't it?
Posted By: - Ice

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 04/02/17 01:57 AM

Originally Posted by DBond
In real life or the sim? For the former, that Hpasp dude would know. For the latter, no associated defense units.

So just the SA-10 by itself?

Originally Posted by DBond
It was a fair try though, wasn't it?

Sneaky old bastage!! biggrin
If you have a campaign save that has a flight fragged for an SA-10, I'd love to try it! I'm not very good at making TEs and busy with my Helios profile at the minute. Help me out here!
Posted By: DBond

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 04/02/17 02:25 AM

Sorry I don't at the mo since I'm in Balkans and haven't seen one. My Korea campaigns are all completed.

So just the SA-10 by itself?

Yes, well it's a Flap Lid with maybe 4 or 6 launchers and a brace of lorries I do believe. But of course if it's important enough to protect with a SATAN, it's also going to have ground troops and AAA and other SAMs around most likely. So in that sense, in a campaign at least, it is well protected.

The thing with the SA-10 is, if it is your target and it shows on your HTS, you fly a high show at 30,000 and launch from 50 miles. That's going to work and one might wonder what all the fuss is about. But if there is one around when you are on some other sort of mission and have no HARM nor HTS, that thing is lethal.

Posted By: - Ice

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 04/02/17 11:21 AM

Originally Posted by DBond
My Korea campaigns are all completed.

That's a statement I may not be making for another year...

Originally Posted by DBond
Yes, well it's a Flap Lid with maybe 4 or 6 launchers and a brace of lorries I do believe. But of course if it's important enough to protect with a SATAN, it's also going to have ground troops and AAA and other SAMs around most likely. So in that sense, in a campaign at least, it is well protected.

The thing with the SA-10 is, if it is your target and it shows on your HTS, you fly a high show at 30,000 and launch from 50 miles. That's going to work and one might wonder what all the fuss is about. But if there is one around when you are on some other sort of mission and have no HARM nor HTS, that thing is lethal.

I just want to play with them, find out where they start getting dangerous, and working out ways to take them down. When I first started playing, I would panic whenever I have a missile coming my way, be it from an airborne platform or a ground-based platform. Knowing how to beat them and practicing that over and over gives me the confidence to maintain my cool, maintain my SA the next time I'm launched upon.
Posted By: theOden

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 04/02/17 01:17 PM

here you go Ice:

Korea TE with SA-10

Unpack and put both files in "Data/Campaign/SAVE" (I guess you know the drill)

Korea standard, look for "Grumble on Ice" (yes, I really am that funny smile )
Posted By: - Ice

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 04/02/17 01:26 PM

Posted By: ricnunes

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 04/02/17 03:40 PM

Originally Posted by - Ice
What's a usual SA-10 defense system? Are there other SAM sites with/around it? I don't want to start a campaign for it, but the HARM TE does not have a -10. Any chance you guys can whip up a quick TE? ricnunes?

Hi Ice,

I guess that theOden beat me with a TE scenario. By the way sorry for not having seen these latest set of posts (with you "requesting" a TE with the SA-10) but I've been busy with work.
Actually I'm taking a break from my work and thus I took the opportunity to reply.

Well about the SA-10 (Russian name S-300) yes, it's a very dangerous system since like theOden said when a missile launched at you by this system your RWR won't alert you! This is because the modeled system or the SA-10 missile variant modeled in Falcon BMS uses a guidance system called "Track-via-Missile" or TVM. In real life there are other SA-10 missile variants which uses other guidance systems such as Command-guidance (similar to the SA-2, SA-3, etc...), Semi-active radar homing or SARH (similar to the AIM-7 Sparrow, AA-10, SA-6, etc...) and there's even a missile variant which uses Active radar homing (similar to the AMRAAM or AA-12) - all of these as expected should allow your RWR at some point to give you some sort of a "missile launch warning" .
However for some reason in BMS you only have SA-10 missiles which use the "Track-via-Missile" guidance method. I don't know why, perhaps it was considered to be the more "challenging" (since it's the only variant which doesn't alert a missile launch on the RWR) or perhaps it's the most used variant in real life? Perhaps both?

Anyway, just to give you an idea about how the "Track-via-Missile" guidance works is the following:
- IMO, it seems to be some sort of a combination of the Inertial System similar to the one used for example in the AMRAAM where the missile simply follows a waypoint which should be more or less where the missile should intercept the target (this is what the missile follows for the most part of its flight path). This waypoint is updated/uploaded to the missile (in flight) by the SA-10 ground station from time to time (I believe this time is measured in seconds but I'm not sure). On the final stages of the fight path the missile will use a similar guidance system to the Semi-active radar homing or SARH where the missile follows the reflected radar waves emitted from the SA-10 radar (Flap Lid) which is still in "search mode" and thus not giving any special alert to the target's RWR. Also and since the missile is already very close the target (flying previously thru inertial/waypoint system) there's no need for the SA-10 radar/ground station to change its radar mode (for example to something similar to STT) because the SA-10 missile's seeker will be "sensitive" enough to detect reflected radar waves (even from the SA-10 Radar - Flap Lid - in a "simple" search mode).

The Patriot uses a similar guidance/system. I could be wrong but I think that the Patriot is even more dangerous since based on a few personal experiments it looks like the Patriot is either more "precise" or less vulnerable to opposing ECM, but again I could be wrong. But yes, the SA-10 should be by far the most dangerous SAM threat (at least land based) of all Russian origin equipment.
I found the SA-10 for the first time (in a campaign) in the KTO (default/stock Korea scenario) "Rolling Fire" campaign when Russia and China entered the war (which happens later on this campaign). In this "Rolling Fire" campaign (KTO) North Korea don't have SA-10s BUT Russia and China both have them and you'll find them in missions where the objective is to attack targets inside Russia and China.
By having a quick look at TE, a (one) SA-10 air defence "battalion" (which you can only find under "Soviet" equipment/side) is consisted by the following:
- 4xSA-10 Launchers
- 1xFlap Lid Radar (the search and guidance radar - destroy this and the entire SA-10 Launchers goes "out of action")
- 3xZPU-2 Anti-aircraft guns
- 6xSupport Trucks (with some Russian weird name biggrin )

Finally, my advise to engage these SA-10s is the following:
1- Certify that you have your ECM turned on (and if you're flying for the Americans/South Koreans, certify that you carry an ECM pod on your F-16).
2- If you have standoff (long range) weapons carry and use them and stay afar as possible from the SA-10 missile site. If you have SEAD support let them deal with the SA-10 first and in the meanwhile keep your distance from the SA-10s and fly with them either at your 10 or 2 o'clock (and again with your ECM on) - I found this way that the SA-10 will have a hard time hitting you.
3- If you know the SA-10 position previously and with precision (during the briefing) consider the use of Small Diameter Bombs (SDBs) and together with marking the targets (as waypoint) on the briefing, namely the Flap Lid radar, engage them from afar with the SDBs. HARMs may also be a good alternative but I still haven't used them against SA-10s.

I hope this helps (and sorry for the long post).
Posted By: - Ice

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 04/02/17 06:28 PM

Originally Posted by ricnunes
By the way sorry for not having seen these latest set of posts (with you "requesting" a TE with the SA-10) but I've been busy with work.

What a pathetic excuse!!! Don't you know there's a war on?? Pilots are risking and possibly losing their lives and you come here with this "work" malarkey??
biggrin biggrin biggrin

No worries there ricnunes! Unlike DBond, we all have this condition called "real life" and those that are in advanced stages may even exhibit symptoms of "responsibilities." Hehehehe....

Thanks for the info regarding the SA-10. I hope I can try out theOden's TE this evening and see what I can do about that SAM site.
Posted By: DBond

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 04/02/17 10:07 PM

Originally Posted by - Ice

Unlike DBond, we all have this condition called "real life" and those that are in advanced stages may even exhibit symptoms of "responsibilities." Hehehehe....

Well there's a war on as you said and certain sacrifices must be made. How can I think of work when Red armor is pouring over the line? That seems selfish.

Quick update on my BoP campaign. It's now mid-day Day 3 and Blue is making a amphibious landing at Dubrovnik. This is behind the current Adriatic front near Split, which will trap a good portion of three infantry divisions. We have units in Belgrade, but that isn't the objective. Sarajevo, Tuzla, Mostar and several other cities are. So I expect the campaign to continue on for two more days unless Red get heavily reinforced.
Posted By: DBond

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 04/03/17 11:45 AM

Something's wonky with the amphibious landing. The landing fleet spawned at 0900 on day 3 and began sailing across the Adriatic. They made landfall near Dubrovnik and then turned and sailed back to Italy. But no troops appeared. No Marines storming the beaches and rolling to my objectives.Too bad, as I was counting on that.
Posted By: theOden

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 04/03/17 04:29 PM


Maybe they got counter-orders just as they arrived on the beach.

Such details is quite cool though, I tend to focus on my next flight so I miss things like this.
Posted By: DBond

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 04/03/17 04:35 PM

Well, that's what I am for biggrin

I posted about it on the BMS forum, but I get the feeling that Cougar didn't even realize this was in there. It doesn't work right for whatever reason, and he said he will have a look at it

Posted By: DBond

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 04/04/17 07:30 PM

Well the landing eventually went off with a pop. A grand total of three (3) Marine battalions showed up southeast of Mostar.

Didn't matter much since the campaign ended later that night on day 4. Inexplicably it put a stalemate in my logbook. at least it now says 3/0/1. The final figure is stalemates, not losses right? Never got either, ever, so not sure which is which. I hope it's a stalemate otherwise I am locked at my current rank foreva. Be careful, because I suppose it could have actually been a loss recorded. That IS a stalemate right? The manual says it is so I think I am fortunate, but it makes me gun shy about completing campaigns in the Balkans theater.
Posted By: ricnunes

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 04/06/17 09:07 PM

Originally Posted by - Ice

No worries there ricnunes! Unlike DBond, we all have this condition called "real life" and those that are in advanced stages may even exhibit symptoms of "responsibilities." Hehehehe....

If I were DBond I would shoot you down "in sight" just for that comment, LoL! biggrin

Yup, real life can really get "in the way" of our hobby. In my personal case life just got busier than usual hence my previous post.

Originally Posted by - Ice

Thanks for the info regarding the SA-10. I hope I can try out theOden's TE this evening and see what I can do about that SAM site.

You're welcome. By the way, how's your "fight" against the SA-10s in theOden's TE?
Posted By: - Ice

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 04/07/17 09:42 AM

Originally Posted by ricnunes
If I were DBond I would shoot you down "in sight" just for that comment, LoL! biggrin

He can't because he knows I am a valuable asset! biggrin

Originally Posted by ricnunes
You're welcome. By the way, how's your "fight" against the SA-10s in theOden's TE?

Got a new NVMe drive and put a fresh install of Win10CE on it so still in the process of putting programs back in.
Posted By: DBond

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 04/07/17 11:46 AM

It's true. I see Ice as our tech guru. He knows all the gadgets and how to get them working, 'cause he isn't old yet. This is valuable I must admit. So he must be tolerated biggrin
Posted By: - Ice

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 04/07/17 12:33 PM

Originally Posted by DBond
So he must be tolerated biggrin

You see those black wires coming out of your HOTAS, DBond? That's what's slowing them down. If you cut those wires, your control inputs are sent to the PC faster. We all know how there's less resistance in the air compared to some solid copper wires. Try it and you'll be impressed! biggrin
Posted By: DBond

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 04/07/17 12:38 PM

OK OK let's see here... now I have one wire that's black. And then the one next to it is a bit blacker. Do I cut the blacker one or the one not quite so black?
Posted By: - Ice

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 04/07/17 10:07 PM

To be on the safe side, if it's even SLIGHTLY BLACK, go ahead and cut it smile
Posted By: Mira73

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 10/05/17 07:35 AM

ADA skill and pilot Skill..? Does it affect the points earned on the mission? Or just a challenge rating? I started my first BMS campaign with challenge rating settings - Rookie, ADA and Pilot skill Veteran.
Posted By: DBond

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 10/05/17 12:26 PM

I don't know the answer, but I would assume that settings like yours would earn less points than if both were set to veteran, or more than if both were set to rookie. Essentially, you have a 'custom' challenge rating
Posted By: Mira73

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 10/05/17 01:58 PM

I tried an experiment..Start new campaing. Iron Fortress. Challenge rating Cadet and the squadron in Seoul has 18xMig29S. Then I ran the new campaign again. I changed Challenge rating to Ace but in Seoul it was still 18xMig29S. I thought the squadron would have more planes ..My BMS has a bug?
Posted By: DBond

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 10/05/17 02:06 PM

In BMS challenge rating has no effect on force ratio like other versions of Falcon 4. It is intended.
Posted By: Mira73

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 10/05/17 04:14 PM

Does the slider setting in the priorities affect only my squadron or all of the squadrons in my campaign?
Posted By: DBond

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 10/05/17 04:32 PM

PAK sliders affect all Blue squadrons.
Posted By: Mira73

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 10/05/17 04:48 PM

And Target and Mission type ?
Posted By: DBond

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 10/05/17 05:32 PM

Posted By: Tazz

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 10/08/17 09:54 PM

Having finally won my very first campaign (BMS 4.32.7 - Rolling Fire) since playing Falcon 4.0 since 1998, I tried Balkans 3.0 with update. Unfortunately as soon as I clicked "RECON" in the campaign UI, Falcon would crash to desktop. Hmm okay, then let's wait with Balkans until I'm on BMS 4.33.3/4.34.1. I tried ITO 0.991 which works all fine but sand just isn't really my thing.

So back to Korea then and this time I wanted to fly Iron Fortress. However, as DBond stated already, BMS Iron Fortress is not the Iron Fortress we all know.
Thankfully the original Korea Theaters/Campaigns are still included.

But looking at the classic Iron Fortress I noticed a few things I had to correct. Mind you, I don't want to "dumb down" the experience at all but I do want these "war games to be as realistic as possible. So I had to make a few changes using Mission Commander:

- I changed all DPRK SU-27 squadrons to a mix of MiG-29A and MiG-23ML squadrons. North Korea does not have any Flankers of any kind so that had to be changed.

- I boosted the DPRK by changing the majority of their MiG-19 squadrons to a mixture of MiG-21MF, MiG-23ML and MiG-29A squadrons. Within the DPRK the MiG-17 is used for training purposes only and the MiG-19s are no longer in front line service so I still had them have a two or three "reserve" squadrons far away from the FLOT but I increased the number of more relevant type. At the start of my Iron Fortress (Classic) campaign, the MiG-29A and MiG-23ML are the most numerous front line squadrons, supported by additional MIG-21 squadrons.

- I added the 44th and 67th Fighter Squadrons (F-15C) at Kadena where they are part of the 18th Wing in real-life anyway.

- I removed the F-111F squadron as the F-111E/F has been firmly retired from USAF and RAAF service.

- I changed the F-14D squadron into a F/A-18F squadron.

- I changed the F/A-18C squadron into a F/A-18E squadron.

- I added the ROKAF 255th Special Operations Squadron (C-130H) to Pusan Air Base to boost Allied logistics capabilities.

- I moved the US Army Patriot and ROK HAWK units to focus protection purely on our front line airbases as keeping these open is priority #1.

..... and we're off! smile I've had some interesting times killing the immediate SA-10 threats and being now at mid-day, we seem to have halted the wave of enemy aircraft. So I find myself flying a lot of BARCAP, TARCAP and Escort missions to provide coverage for the A-10s and ROKAF F-4Es, F-5Es and F-16Cs to hit the enemy ground forces at the FLOT, carrying additional AGM-88s in case some North Korean SA-2, SA-10 or SA-17 operator dares to flick on their (repaired/replaced) radar.
Posted By: theOden

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 10/09/17 07:20 AM

Interesting edits there Tazz,
Any chance sharing the resulting files (or are they spread all over the folders?)
Posted By: Tazz

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 10/09/17 09:41 AM

I could but I did the edits in my save game file itself. It would be better to see how I can edit the actual campaign SAVE template file (which generates the campaign) so that you can set the difficulty levels to your liking and still use the modified order of battle for both sides.
Posted By: DBond

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 10/11/17 03:09 PM

Interesting. Which IF is this? Is there a third IF included here? The 'classic' IF you are referring to i only saw as part of the Strong DPRK theater, and I don't recall them having MiG-19s. Perhaps they do and I forget already?

Swapping out the Tomcats is good, as my experience is they perform quite poorly in the campaign.

Frankly, I feel that the OoB's for all of the BMS campaigns need an overhaul. For example, in the KTO theater, only Tiger Spirit has Eagles, they are absent in Rolling Fire and Iron Fortress for whatever reason. There are lots of similar issues. I thought about taking this on, but have yet to learn MC, and anyway I haven't flown F4 all summer. But thinking of getting back in to it now that winter is coming.
Posted By: schnidrman

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 10/13/17 01:59 AM

I'm feelin' the need...
Posted By: DBond

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 10/13/17 12:38 PM

OK, well you've got me thinking about it. I did buy a second Cougar that I have yet to put through it's paces, so there's that...

Maybe we can get something going again.
Posted By: Tazz

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 10/14/17 11:23 PM

Originally Posted by DBond
Interesting. Which IF is this? Is there a third IF included here? The 'classic' IF you are referring to i only saw as part of the Strong DPRK theater, and I don't recall them having MiG-19s. Perhaps they do and I forget already?

Swapping out the Tomcats is good, as my experience is they perform quite poorly in the campaign.

Frankly, I feel that the OoB's for all of the BMS campaigns need an overhaul. For example, in the KTO theater, only Tiger Spirit has Eagles, they are absent in Rolling Fire and Iron Fortress for whatever reason. There are lots of similar issues. I thought about taking this on, but have yet to learn MC, and anyway I haven't flown F4 all summer. But thinking of getting back in to it now that winter is coming.

I'm referring to the Iron Fortress campaign that's part of the "Original Korea Theater" that comes with BMS 4.32.7 - I think it's also included in BMS 4.33.3 but I'm still stuck on 4.32.7 as that supports 32-bit Windows XP.
(Which I need for my SWF22 FLCS and TQS while I'm making very slow progress on converting my other FLC/TQS set to USB ...)

Interestingly enough, I had changed the North Korean SU-27 squadrons into MiG-29A and MiG-23ML squadrons but I still had some "ghost" SU-27s flying around. I think these may have been flights tasked already BEFORE I changed the aircraft types. Now I'm later in Day 1, I no longer see Su-27s flying around. I really should look into how I can edit the Campaign SAVE files themselves (opposed to editing my actual game saves of campaigns already generated) so I can get the proper ORBAT from the very start.

I fully agree with the F-15Cs being missed in most campaigns. In all my campaigns, I always add the Kadena-based 44th FS and 67th FS (under 18th Wing) and quickly move them into the Korean theater.

Personally, I prefer realistic ORBATs over "game balance". Which is why I want my Kadena F-15Cs in the theater alongside my Misawa F-16CJs. And I usually add B-52s later on in the campaign - given them ~48 hours to deploy to Kadena (as we don't have Guam in the map of course).
Posted By: DBond

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 10/16/17 12:44 PM

OK, just trying to understand. There are two Korean theaters in BMS 4.33. Koreean Theater of Operations (KTO) which is default. And Strong DPRK Theater. The classic IF is in the latter. Could it be a 4.32 thing? Were planesets revised for 4.33? That would 'splain it.
Posted By: DBond

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 10/21/17 03:25 AM

I got around to having a look tonight, and in 4.33 at least, there are no MiG-21s in the 'classic' IF (Strong DPRK Theater). Must be a 4.32 thing.
Posted By: schnidrman

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 10/29/17 08:01 PM

Okay, I may have found something here...

[Linked Image]

So before I add the line I get this when choosing Ace challenge rating -

[Linked Image]

After adding that line, I get this -

[Linked Image]

This was changed in 4.33U2. Adding that line in the .cfg reverts back to the old way.
Posted By: DBond

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 10/29/17 08:09 PM

Thank you so much for discovering this. For folks who may not know what this means, this allows us to remove the BMS 4.33 'feature' where challenge rating no longer meant anything. Without this switch, challenge rating has zero effect on strength ratio or force levels. It was a feature of BMS that I really didn't like. In essence, it meant there was no real difference between challenge rating settings other than the probability of being awarded medals, and possibly the effectiveness of the AI, but I have no way to quantify that.

With this change (and I have yet to overcome my excitement and actually try it out), challenge rating will once again see a reduction in Blue strength, and an increase in Red for each increasing step in the rating. The way it used to be when we were growing up biggrin

Awesome find Jason, I had no idea this could be done and I will start a new campaign tonight!

Unfortunately, I cannot know what other things this might affect, as it mentions supply, so what else might we be concerned with?
Posted By: schnidrman

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 10/29/17 08:21 PM

From what I understood in the change log, the rate of re-supply was changed in favor of force changes. IOW, on Ace, blue would get resupplied less often than red. But I could be wrong as the description was rather vague.
Posted By: DBond

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 10/30/17 12:29 AM

OK, after watching the Cowboys win I made the change to the .falconbms.cfg file. To give anyone else who wants to change this an easy copy (this line does not exist by default and needs to be added)

set g_bNewChallengeRatingCode 0

I put it under the Misc section for what it's worth, though it may not matter where it is? Works like a charm. I don't know yet what long term repercussions it will have of course, but as mentioned, this helps puts the challenge back in challenge rating.

With this change, Strength ratios are modified according to your challenge rating. This is how F4 has traditionally been. Ace setting will result in 12 fighters per Blue squadron. I had a look and Red is at 18 for fighter squadrons 14 attack. At the opposite end of the scale (Recruit), Blue have 24 fighters per squadron, Red just 10. So in Rolling Fire fox example, Ace versus Recruit results in a complete reversal of aircraft strength ratio. At Ace Red will have roughly twice as many airframes as Blue at the start. At recruit, Blue will have double.

Also traditionally in F4, challenge rating affected the strength ratio of ground units as well, and after playing for a bit I will know more about that. But if you played Ace in Allied Force for example, you'll know that this makes Blue ground units extremely brittle. It only takes a few losses to go broken.

I felt that in BMS campaigns,winning was a forgone conclusion, classic Iron Fortress the only exception. It's too easy to win air superiority. Playing with the old style challenge rating, a player will need to be much more careful with his aircraft, and if it also affects ground units, even more careful with them. Every campaign requires Blue to eventually advance and capture objectives. If the ground units are part of this change, then ensuring you have the ground strength to actually advance becomes a primary concern. Much more attention needs to be paid to clearing the way and to protecting the grunts. Two full strength armor battalions meeting at Ace would see the Blue unit heading for the rear in minutes.

In the air, a few losses means that squadron is down to a half dozen aircraft. Suddenly you find yourself having the strength to do nothing other than fly CAP, leaving important Red target unscathed. You also find yourself monitoring the next resupply of your fighter squadrons smile
Posted By: schnidrman

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 10/30/17 02:30 AM

Originally Posted by DBond

I put it under the Misc section for what it's worth, though it may not matter where it is? Works like a charm.

I put it under - Config.exe Settings - so it probably doesn't matter where you put it.
Posted By: DBond

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 10/30/17 01:34 PM

I started a new campaign, a KTO Tiger Spirit on Veteran. There's a significant shift in force ratio of course. But in TS it's not as severe as other campaigns. I just wanted to get a feel for the new rules and what better campaign to dip my toes?

One slight change in BMS is that in previous versions of F4, Ace was 12 Blue and 24 Red planes in fighter squadrons. Here, Red is 18. Not a huge difference, but if you project those 6 airframes over 20+ squadrons it adds up. Interestingly, in veteran TS I noticed that DPRK fighter squadrons have 18 aircraft while PRC have 16. Also, while attack squadrons have 14 aircraft (IL-28, SU-25, etc), the A-10 squadron has 20. Nice!

I'm looking forward to my first Ace campaign under the old style challenge rating. Looks like that might happen online. What a trip that's going to be biggrin
Posted By: - Ice

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 10/30/17 05:46 PM

Interesting find! Any idea why this change was introduced in the first place?
Posted By: schnidrman

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 10/30/17 06:41 PM

4.33U2 change log goes into it a little bit. They made changes to the supply structure and somehow force ratios became the scarifice.
Posted By: DBond

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 10/30/17 07:14 PM

I started a thread at the BMS forum hoping to learn more detail of what changes with this switch.
Posted By: -Axe-

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 10/30/17 11:02 PM

Glad you did that. I'll go over and check it out, that's for sure.

Way to go schnidrman, for finding this. thumbsup

You know, now that I'm thinking about it, I made an Ace TE a month ago, to practice naval strikes, expecting it to give less fighters in my squad. I wanted less actually and couldn't get it.

I expected to get 12 but got 24. Maybe I will redo it now knowing what's going on.
Posted By: DBond

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 10/31/17 02:49 AM

It's a huge change to stock 4.33. Of course we want to use this change to make things more challenging, but it works the other way at lower settings, and allows a great degree of customization, so that players of any level can set up a campaign tailored to their comfort level. If I were a new player just starting out, I'd love to have the option to have overwhelming air superiority right off the bat. Without this change, that cannot happen. With this change, it certainly can, depending on campaign.

It appears to me that this change also affects ground force ratios as well. And as I mentioned over on the BMS forum, the sliders make it so you can set it up with a great degree of customization, like it used to be smile

Ace campaigns are back to being a true challenge. I wouldn't recommend anyone play on Ace unless they are prepared to get hands-on. There's something awesome about having just 12 aircraft in your squadron. Each and every loss is keenly felt.

Schnidrman and I have been talking about going Ace for the online stuff. I wonder which campaign would prove the best for this? I was thinking Rolling Fire. Remember the Wall O' MiGs we used to always talk about in the old days? It would be back big time, since you don't have the strength to overwhelm it any longer. Every Red plane downed and every jet you bring home means something.
Posted By: - Ice

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 10/31/17 04:05 AM

My issue with the campaigns is that I cannot look at the "big picture" like you guys can. I can look at my flight, my package, and that's about it. I try to fly smart and bring back the aircraft in good condition, but I don't have the ability to determine whether the guys over at the next airbase are walking into a trap.

I just may start a campaign and post it here and see what help I can get and what new things I can learn. I do remember the "bars" in Allied Force which showed whether Blue or Red was winning or losing, but again, I never really felt like I could influence those bars directly.
Posted By: DBond

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 10/31/17 11:32 AM

Go for it! I will be happy to throw my 2 cents in. Honestly, there are few things I enjoy discussing more than Falcon 4 campaigns. And with guys like Axe and Schnidrman around you have a lot of old hands to help out. I guarantee you would learn much, and by the time it's over you'll have the ability to see the big picture. Plus a victory in the logbook, and a promotion or two to boot.
Posted By: - Ice

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 10/31/17 12:52 PM

Hehehe... I think because of my learning experience in F4AF, I never really bothered with how my logbook looks like. I had a lot of deaths and Blue-on-Blue at the time, so ignorance is bliss.... and continues to this day smile

My one big issue with flying campaigns is having to babysit the AI.... can you tell me what you do with those guys? When I can, I just used to have them hold in the IP, I go do the mission, then either jump into #2 if I get shot down or if I come back successful, we RTB. The only time I really use the wingman is for A-A fights where I sometimes sic him onto the target while I stay back and support.
Posted By: DBond

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 10/31/17 01:27 PM

Well that depends. I will rarely have the AI orbit while I complete the mission. In that case I may as well have fragged a solo flight. And frankly, these days I do a lot of solo flights, especially online. Yeah, it's not realistic, but it means I won't lose the airframe to AI stupidity.

But that said, I find the AI quite competent. What I tend to do is choose and assign targets for the AI. I will lock an aircraft and give an attack my target command for example. Or perhaps if we are on SEAD/DEAD I select the radar and tell him to attack. As soon as I hear Magnum I issue a rejoin. I always fly with 3 kick-out commands, which puts the AI a couple miles behind, so I fly far enough in front to select and assign. If things get hairy I use weapons free and rejoin alot. It's difficult to chainsaw with the AI, though it can be done. So mostly we are flying as a linked pair.

If we are attacking a ground facility or a vehicle column, I put the AI wingman in trail, and then 3 kickouts, which puts him several miles in trail. That way I can assign his target, make my drop or attack, and then he comes through and does his. This avoids having us both attacking at the same time, and possibly hitting the same target.

So I wouldn't call it hand holding, more a guiding hand. I check regularly his weapon and fuel state, and if he's down to heaters or winchester I send him RTB. Wingman commands are robust in F4. Sure, it's still the AI and you'll shake your head sometimes. But once you get the hang of it you can puppet him in to a pretty effective combat jet. There's plenty more to discuss, and I'd enjoy that, but those are some basic things I do.
Posted By: theOden

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 10/31/17 01:50 PM

I do what DBond just described or preferably frag a single-ship if going down the danger zone.
I can see that above is what Ice would call babysit the AI and yes, one has to.

When I fly with AI my first thing is guiding/assigning them to a target and based upon their success I finish off the target or go for a secondary target.

RTB is a common radio call to them, true. But you can also call "Clear My Six" when they disposed all their ground ordnance (which btw I have a hard time to get them to do, they should follow your SMS settings, right? or was that Allied Force?)

They come in handy to counter red intercepts if bounced so it really comes from the general campaign situation when and how many AI I bring along.

(Brnik airbase top-right map in Balkans tend to eat AI planes so go singe-ship from up there)
Posted By: DBond

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 10/31/17 02:08 PM

Oden! wave
Posted By: DBond

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 10/31/17 05:14 PM

Another thing that I occasionally do with the wingman, is take him along set up for a different role. Like I might want to hit a nuclear plant. I can mostly flatten it on my own, at least knock it offline. So the wingman can be armed with only air missiles to cover me, or I can give him HARMs and carry a HTS myself and pick out radars on the ingress to help clear the way for my attack. There's no requirement to have him flying the same mission profile.

I seem to rarely frag myself four-ships, usually just a pair. Things become more complicated when you are controlling three AI flight members of course. Well technically, two wingmen, since you can only issue element commands to #3 and #4. You also have the option to make AI other flights within the package. In that case they will more or less get it done on their own. Lots of latitude in setting up campaign missions.

Posted By: - Ice

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 10/31/17 11:43 PM

Well, having him orbit means I can focus on what I need to do. What you describe is exactly what I call "babysitting".... even a newbie human pilot does not need that much "guiding hand" smile But I guess I'll have to do this if I want to return to flying campaigns.

Bombing a nuke plant is easy, and so is sic'ing him onto a bugged A-A target. It's when things get dicey that I don't like the AI.... and we all know how many times a plan survives first contact wink If the area has been sanitized beforehand, then I have no issues of using the AI, but this is usually late into the campaign. On the early missions, where airframe numbers count, well, I'm not a very good babysitter.
Posted By: DBond

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 11/01/17 12:30 PM

Yes, I'd say that the things we are describing are the minimum required to have an effective AI wingman. If you don't want to do this, there's no reason you couldn't frag solo missions. Or just do what you described and set him to orbit while you attack.
Posted By: DBond

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 11/01/17 05:18 PM

Not a peep out of the devs or anyone else at the BMS forum, so I say we plow ahead and see how it goes.

Possible they don't have any idea of what effects this might have? They mention re-supply rate in the changelog right? So perhaps this will be faster with settings that have fewer aircraft?

Maybe as we learn more we can report back to them smile
Posted By: TacError

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 11/03/17 04:47 AM

Originally Posted by Tazz
I'm referring to the Iron Fortress campaign that's part of the "Original Korea Theater" that comes with BMS 4.32.7 - I think it's also included in BMS 4.33.3 but I'm still stuck on 4.32.7 as that supports 32-bit Windows XP.

Originally Posted by DBond
OK, just trying to understand. There are two Korean theaters in BMS 4.33. Koreean Theater of Operations (KTO) which is default. And Strong DPRK Theater. The classic IF is in the latter. Could it be a 4.32 thing? Were planesets revised for 4.33? That would 'splain it.

I installed the new BMS version a few days ago. I can confirm that 4.33 removed the Original Korea Theater that's being mentioned here. Though, I copied over the OKT files from 4.32 into a handmade 4.33 campaign folder and it seems to run fine (though I haven't tested it extensively). OKT provides OOBs closest to the original game's late 1990s timeline, to my preference.
Posted By: DBond

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 11/03/17 12:46 PM

Yeah, that makes sense and explain what Tazz was saying.

I never played 4.32. So what is/was it? Tiger Spirit, Rolling Fire and classic Iron Fortress? The 'new' Iron Fortress in the KTO is only a 4.33 thing?

Posted By: TacError

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 11/03/17 02:35 PM

4.32 had the following theaters:
- Korea (the "stock BMS" campaign)
- Original Korea
- Korea Strong DPRK
- Korea Old Aircraft
- Korea TvT

4.33 removed Original Korea and Korea Old Aircraft; I do not know why. The "new" Iron Fortress was always there as part of the stock BMS Korea theater. They were designed by Scoob_SBM who provided the following design notes:

Posted By: DBond

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 11/03/17 02:51 PM

Thanks. Good stuff Tac.

Interesting comments in that thread. Iron Fortress was not 'essentially unwinnable'. That's silly. But it explains why we have the new Iron Fortress I suppose. But as I mentioned earlier in this thread, it should have a different name. It clouds the issue with two entirely different campaigns sharing the same name. I suggested Over the Ramparts smile

I would like the option to restore the AF campaigns with all three theaters. Those campaigns worked the best, and the three 'eras' gave nice variety and jumps in difficulty. The Balkans seems to be a 'straight port' of the AF ones, so I'm sure this is possible, but whether it easy or legal I do not know.

It's also interesting that he says Tiger Spirit is intended to be the most challenging air to air. I suppose it is in the early hours, in BMS anyway.

I've long intended to rework the campaigns to my liking. Maybe I'll look in to this over the winter. At the very least I'd like to overhaul the OoBs and active bases, and possibly victory objectives as well.
Posted By: schnidrman

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 11/03/17 03:27 PM

Originally Posted by TacError
I installed the new BMS version a few days ago. I can confirm that 4.33 removed the Original Korea Theater that's being mentioned here. Though, I copied over the OKT files from 4.32 into a handmade 4.33 campaign folder and it seems to run fine (though I haven't tested it extensively). OKT provides OOBs closest to the original game's late 1990s timeline, to my preference.

Keep us posted on your testing. I read a post about someone adding 4.32 files to 4.33 DB and the BMS team basically said, fly at your own risk and don't call us when it breaks. Don't know if this applies to theaters though.
Posted By: TacError

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 11/03/17 06:13 PM

Will do. Right now I'm messing around with the U..S/ROK squadron stores to make the weapons fit the 1998 setting better.
Posted By: DBond

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 11/03/17 06:35 PM

Sparrows smile

I gotta say, the Sparrow used to be seen as the red headed step child in the AF days, no one seemed to like to use them. But I did. It's the one radar missile you can fire in to mixed airspace with some degree of comfort.

Oh and the Shrike. I like shooting those too.
Posted By: TacError

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 11/03/17 08:06 PM

Yep. I've readded Sparrows to the stores and made the AIM-120B a "premium weapon" with very low availability.
Posted By: theOden

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 11/03/17 08:09 PM

Originally Posted by DBond
Oh and the Shrike. I like shooting those too.

No no and just no!
Posted By: DBond

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 11/03/17 08:12 PM

Whatcha got against the Shrike?

They were cool.
Posted By: theOden

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 11/03/17 08:16 PM

Short ranged half-blind Vietnam era extra weight.
/Mic dropped

(well atleast for me they rarely give success haha)
Posted By: DBond

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 11/03/17 08:24 PM

Well, yeah, when you put it that way.....
Posted By: TacError

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 11/04/17 12:14 AM

Originally Posted by schnidrman
Keep us posted on your testing. I read a post about someone adding 4.32 files to 4.33 DB and the BMS team basically said, fly at your own risk and don't call us when it breaks. Don't know if this applies to theaters though.

Hey there!

I've played a few missions in my tweaked Original Korea Iron Fortress and everything seems to work fine (very hectic with no AMRAAMs and low numbers of PGMs). I basically cloned the 4.33 theater folder format and put the old campaign files into that.
Posted By: DBond

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 11/08/17 02:29 AM

I completed my first campaign since making the switch to the old style challenge rating. This was Ace KTO Iron Fortress. Other campaigns would see a much more marked swing in force ratio. So I picked the softest one first smile

Tiger Spirit or Rolling Fire would see a bigger shift in strength and I'll give one of those a go next.

The boost in Red strength was apparent, as they weren't broken by the time it ended. And the ground forces ratio could have been a factor as well. Blue battalions are brittle on Ace. In the end it didn't have much effect on the result, but kept things interesting with a more active airspace. The quick end meant I didn't see it play out for long. KTO IF is the easiest campaign I think, as in only requires Blue to open the corridor through Osan and Suwon to take Seoul. That's what I did here and just held in the central and the east. Blue troops captured Seoul at 1800 hours, Day 2.

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Posted By: schnidrman

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 11/08/17 03:22 AM

Nice work!
Posted By: DBond

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 11/08/17 12:24 PM

Thanks. It was just a matter of opening the corridor, which I did with all sorts of craft, but mainly A-10s. I sent them out as two-ships armed with Mav-Ds, CBU-87 and CBU-97. They really clean up. As the door swung open the ground troops (two divisions of Marines) were given orders to plunge in to the breach and just followed two roads north, meeting little to no opposition along the way. The do get tuckered out, so a few stops had to be done to allow them to rest. But as you see they made pretty good time. Elsewhere along the line the troops moved forward here and there a bit to capture airfields, seal off road junctions and shorten the line.

As mentioned the Blue troops are brittle at these settings, and in the few instances where Blue troops met Red on the ground, the Blue troops came out worse. So it's really important to thoroughly clear the way for them. If Red can inflict enough damage, you could find yourself struggling to muster enough troops to press on to the objectives. In this campaign, the single objective simplifies things a bit, but in Tiger Spirit for example, with it's many objectives, this would be more important.
Posted By: schnidrman

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 11/12/17 11:42 PM

I'm just doing mop up work now on an Iron Fortress campaign that I started nearly a year ago. It's the one that DBond and Axe have flown with me a couple of times.

Here I found a couple of enemy battalions going along a highway just NE of Seoul Airfield. I rippled off 8 CBU 87's right down the middle of the convoy fromm 22K with devastating affect.

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The CBU 87 CEM's have a pretty large area of effect but aren't as potent against anything harder than a T-72. You will want to use MK 20D's when going after the later generation tanks. I used 999 ft. spacing with burst altitude set to 3000 ft.
Posted By: - Ice

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 11/13/17 01:12 AM

Ugh!! Such ugly 1999 graphics.... biggrin biggrin biggrin
Posted By: -Axe-

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 11/13/17 02:47 AM

Yeah, I'll take 40 any day..

Looking down that is a good hit. From that alt I couldn't do it. Gotta be hard.

Thanks for sharing the spacing and burst alt.
Posted By: DBond

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 11/13/17 03:12 PM

Nice string there Schnidrman! Gotta clear the way for the grunts.

Gotta be hard.

That's the thing, with falling ordnance unaffected by winds in BMS, dropping from high altitude is really no more difficult than lower altitude. The exception would be if the target is moving, in which case the longer fall time complicates things a bit by requiring a bit more Kentucky windage.

Seriously, I find little difference in accuracy whether I'm lofting from 20,000 or doing a level CCRP drop from 11,000.

I just am trying to convince you Axe to get out of the damn weeds. Makes me nervous as a long-tailed cat in a room full of rockin' chairs biggrin
Posted By: -Axe-

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 11/13/17 10:04 PM

Lordy, I need to do something about that cat.

So, how do you guys manage? 1-are you CCRP?
2- could you do CCIP (like I prefer)
Posted By: schnidrman

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 11/14/17 03:47 AM

CCRP with the TGP when possible.
Posted By: - Ice

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 11/14/17 11:50 AM

Yeah, that's one issue I really have with BMS. No winds aloft therefore I feel like a bad-ass all the time plinking stuff from Angels 25-30. Can someone say with certainty how RL pilots do it with dumb bombs, even CBUs? Even with the spread of CBUs, I'm sure there's a limit over which may result in a total miss.

Axe, to do something like this, ideally, you'd want CCRP and "lock" onto your targets with TGP (if it were vehicles) or set a precision steerpoint (if target is a building). You could do a "delayed mode" CCIP drop with the Mk II Eyeball but depending on the target and your smart scaling settings, it may be quite hard to pick out the target accurately from a very high altitude.

Originally Posted by DBond
I just am trying to convince you Axe to get out of the damn weeds.

I had this problem with DCS A10C. I felt that anything above 5,000-6,000 AGL would be too high; I simply did not have the patience to bring the Hog up to 20,000. 12K was the highest I think I went. Luckily, with the Viper, it's so easy to go up and maybe due to practicing with a "hard deck," I now feel 15K is too low unless I'm delivering orndance or in a dogfight.
Posted By: -Axe-

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 11/14/17 03:19 PM

I'll say this, I know you guys are right on this. Whether or not I can (or will-hardheadedness) change or not, that's the real question. screwy
Posted By: Twelvepack

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 01/10/18 08:58 PM

Hi - Love this thread. I am working on my first campaign and having a ball. You were going to discuss airmobile units last February... Care to offer and advice on that topic?

Thanks for an excellent thread!!
Posted By: DBond

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 01/15/18 01:34 PM

Hi Twelvepack, welcome to SimHQ. Thanks for the kind words, glad you found this thread useful.

Back in my AF days I made extensive use of air mobile, particularly with air defense units. I would lift the SAM batteries forward to keep up with the advance and keep my grunts under the umbrella. But in BMS it works a little differently and I've not done much at all. So I have nothing to add on that subject at the mo. How's your campaign going?
Posted By: Moonraker

Re: Falcon 4 Campaigns - 06/11/19 04:03 PM

I beat Rolling Fire once ... Falcon 4 Original ... not sure if I will ever touch a flight sim again ... No Man Sky for me now ... however this is the best Fighter Sim out there.
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