il2 tactics?

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Jul 17, 2005
been playin il2 exp for awhile now, but the thing is i dont know how to dogfight... normaily i will just shot the crap out of enemy when headon. ya i dont know what to do after headon if the enemy didnt go down... :idea: :?: :?: :!:
usually i make the trun asap, and see where he is. (i usually trun by putting straight up :) ) dont know if its right, but it works :p
wait do a flip??? doesnt it make u whole lot slower and give more time for the bad guy to turn around and shoot u? i get that a lot... and i did some practice try to get the hang of shooting now...yep
It depends on a few things, what to do next.
If your sure you've recognized the aircraft speeding, head on towards you as the enemy, then take the shot. but he'll probably be expecting that.
Depending on how much energy you have, and how much you think he has influences what you'll decide to do next.
The two possibilities are to turn or extend out.
Knowing how tight your enemy can turn is important, he might be able to turn inside you, in which case you'll extend.
Generally you do want to go up, to be higher is preferable but try not to loose too much speed.
Turn towards him as he comes in, if he's coming fast then wait till the last second before breaking.
Try to fly with a wing man or at least near other allies.
Don't loiter behind your target trying to get a shot off, his friend is probably lining you up.
Too much to tell.
Visit my squad's forum for tactics training
Real Aussie Air Force
Good Luck.
First, if you're fighting the AI, never, I mean NEVER, do headons. They're all hacks.

In online play, headons can work under certain circumstances, but usually still aren't your best bets because they also expose you to gunfire as well.

My advice for offline is to climb, climb, and climb some more until you hold a decisive advantage and can control the fight with your superior energy. Online, you should do a few things;
1. Get on TeamSpeak with some people flying on the same side as you. Even if you just listen, you'll be better-informed and able to be closer to an ally to render aid or recieve it.
2. Try to get a semi-consistent wingman. Two decent pilots can almost always defeat a true ace with some semblence of teamwork.
3. Look around here: Angels and Airspeed • View forum - Fighter Tactics

I agree, you are just meat on the table without a wingman. In Hyperlobby you will not survive a mission without wingman tactics. Comms are the key.
I think a good starting point are the 'Dicta Boelcke'. These were developed by Oswald Boelcke, probably the first true fighter ace, and they are as true now as they were over 90 years ago. They are especially useful when playing other human players online:

1.Try to secure the upper hand before attacking. If possible, keep the sun behind you

2.Always continue with an attack you have begun

3.Only fire at close range, and then only when the opponent is properly in your sights

4.You should always try to keep your eye on your opponent, and never let yourself be deceived by ruses

5.In any type of attack, it is essential to assail your opponent from behind

6.If your opponent dives on you, do not try to get around his attack, but fly to meet it

7.When over the enemy's lines, never forget your own line of retreat

8.Tip for Squadrons: In principle, it is better to attack in groups of four or six. Avoid two aircraft attacking the same opponent

Most of these are fairly self-explanatory, but if you pop 'Dicta Boelcke' into Wikipedia or Google, you will find fuller explanations of each point.

And finally, one I always stick to is the motto of Lanoe Hawker, the first British ace. It is just two words:




I personally (in the situation you describe) try to never do the whole "playing chicken" thing in a head on (though I used to do it :) ).

What I do is to very, very slightly nose down to pick up speed and use a little rudder so I am not flying perfectly straight just to let the opponent think I am going for the head on but very close to when your average pilot is about 1 second from firing I will pull up and to the left (turns better to the left) having secured some extra speed from my nose down before the merge I find that 9 times out of 10 I have more energy and can climb much higher than the opponent and because I started my turn earlier can usually have changed direction and have my guns lined up before my opponent can.

It's all about energy though, if you haven't got the speed to try doing that then you are best to set it up in the same way but avoid the fire with a quick jink and then carry on downwards and extend away.
Fly Gently, Kill Swiftly!

Once committed to an attack, fly in at full speed. After scoring crippling or disabling hits, I would clear myself and then repeat the process. I never pursued the enemy once they had eluded me. Better to break off and set up again for a new assault. I always began my attacks from full strength, if possible, my ideal flying height being 22,000 ft because at that altitude I could best utilize the performance of my aircraft. Combat flying is based on the slashing attack and rough maneuvering. In combat flying, fancy precision aerobatic work is really not of much use. Instead, it is the rough maneuver which succeeds. Colonel Erich 'Bubi' Hartmann, GAF, aka Karaya One, worlds leading ace, with 352 victories in W.W.II.Jagdgeschwader 52.

Try to secure advantages before attacking. If possible, keep the sun behind you.
Always carry through an attack when you have started it.
Fire only at close range, and only when your opponent is properly in your sights.
Always keep your eye on your opponent, and never let yourself be deceived by ruses.
In any form of attack it is essential to assail your opponent from behind.
If your opponent dives on you, do not try to evade his onslaught, but fly to meet it.
When over the enemy's lines never forget your own line of retreat.
For the Staffel: attack on principle in groups of four or six. When the fight breaks up into a series of single combats, take care that several do not go for one opponent.
— Hauptmann Oswald Boelcke, 1916. Germany's first ace, died in 1916 with 40 victories.

Wait until you see the whites of his eyes.
Fire short bursts of 1 to 2 seconds and only when your sights are definitely 'ON.'
Whilst shooting think of nothing else; brace the whole of the body; have both hands on the stick; concentrate on your ring sight.
Always keep a sharp lookout. "Keep your finger out"!
Height gives you the initiative.
Always turn and face the attack.
Make your decisions promptly. It is better to act quickly even though your tactics are not the best.
Never fly straight and level for more than 30 seconds in the combat area.
When diving to attack always leave a proportion of your formation above to act as top guard.
INITIATIVE, AGGRESSION, AIR DISCIPLINE, and TEAM WORK are words that MEAN something in Air Fighting.
Go in quickly - Punch Hard - Get out!
— Flight Lieutenant Adolphus G. 'Sailor' Malan, RSAAF

Hope this help. But in the end, u just gotta practice.
Once in FB (or 1946, whatever), don´t forget to take a look to the training section.
As in every game, start with lowest difficulty settings (all lights off), and as you practice you can add any difficulty.
Other stuff to take in mind is not only learn about combat tactics but understand the basic physics of flight and dinamic behavior of an airplane.
One thing that I have gotten away from is the padlock feature. That is not a good thing to get used to when you want to fly on full switch servers. The longer I fly on hyperlobby the more I want to fly only full switch.
I have found that practicing with the game's settings at a reasonably difficult level allow a person to learn faster. If you have the settings too "soft", you don't learn to overcome the challenges.

My tactics depend on a number of things: How many enemy, what aircraft I am in, how many in my flight and how many in my flight have experiance. Do I have a full loadout of ammo? How's my fuel level? Has my aircraft been damaged in a previous engagement during the current mission? There's a good number of factors to take into consideration and all can influence the outcome of a fight.

I hate head-on attacks, but sometimes they can't be avoided. If I have to, I'll maintain my heading until I reach a moderate distance, then banking to anticipate coming about on thier six as they pass by me. Sometimes I'll snap off a volley as we close, but for the most part, I don't.

One thing that can't be stressed enought though, and that is to always keep your speed up, even if it means "nosing down" slightly to get a little extra speed built up.

If I get overewhelmed by adversaries, I'll take the fight to the deck and fight them by forcing them down to my level, escpecially when I am at a disadvantage. I know a number of people will disagree, but it was worked for me successfully for many years and countless fights. And when I am fighting more than one enemy, I do not "dwell" on any one target for any length of time. I'll land hits on one enemy, and move on to the next. Staying "locked" on a single enemy allows any others to work onto your 6, and you've lost your advantage and most likely, the fight.

My preference is to attack from below and behind whenever possible. I will exploit blind spots to thier fullest. Knowing the enemy aircraft's traits weaknesses is a huge plus. I never waste my ammunition on "long-shots" because of the obvious waste, and the possability of alerting them to my attack with the missed tracers. In my Bf109, I can land far better "deflection shots" than I can in my Fw190, but on the other-hand, I get better straight shots in my Fw190 than I do with my Bf109.

I've read all dogfighting tactics by all the legends. Those are valuable lessons and a person would do well to use thier advice. If I could add to that, I would say simply, keep your cool and always stay on the offensive.
i dont really use tactics, i just try to get behind the enemy or just trying to flank them, fire some bursts at them and get the hell out before they reallise im behind them :D, after that it are goes into dogfights where i most of the time have to bail because of fuel leaks or fires lol.
im not that kind of tactical fighter like u guys but i get several kills with and without luck.

my advice: hit and run, stay with ur wingman ;)
Head on tactics seem to work for me, but then again, I use twin engine fighters which usually tear the opposing plane to pieces. If you are in a plane that stalls easily (Wildcat), climb and dive at the enemy and don't engage in a turning match. If you are in a nimble plane (Ki-43), then go into the turning game and you will most likely gain the upper hand. Use your planes advantages over the enemy to their full potential.
I don't know if any one else agrees but the Tempest is a good plane to fight in, if you are on the Allied side. It's cannons give it a lot of power in downing an opponent, plus it's really fast. It's a bit sluggish down low, and you can't see behind you too well, but that big armor plate does protect you from hits.

The Hellcat is another very stable gun platform. I think that could be one of the reasons why it did so well in WWII.

I think the plane matters more if you are a starting out on Il 2 than later on. The first plane I really started dogfighting in was the P-39, not the best plane for a beginner because of it's vicious stalls, but it did teach me not to stress the limits of a plane too much.

I think keeping up speed is important in a fight. You may need to lower it some, like when diving if it's a fast plane or when coming up behind an opponent, but most of the time high speed won't hurt in a dogfight.

And I think padlocking also may be a good thing to stay away from. It's better to learn how to follow an aircraft with just your eyes, because it helps keep you more alert for one.
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taking head on shots is sucidal, i wouldnt take a head on shot even if i was in a 190 and my opponent was a p11c lol, taking head on shot means also giving your opponent a free shot as well, the certainty of both getting damaged in a head on is high, so if you even finish him in the head on, the damage you have taken in the head on makes you less efficient to deal with the other bandits hanging around................. so its highly recommended to avoid head on shots,
fighter tactics is learnt from experience, research and observation and same tactics dont work for diffrent planes, so to learn fighter tactics its best to start from a specific aircraft, duing online sortie observe how the experienced pilots fly and learn from them, go through diffrent manuals, etc
I would certainly recommend two things. First, try a few fighters from the game, flying alone with no enemies in QMB, and find one or two machines that you like and can control easily in basic maneuvers. This will probably determine whether you are a boom n' zoom or turn 'n burn guy (I'm definitely T&B).

Then, get your hands on a book or online tutorial containing instructions and diagrams of all the major combat maneuvers - scissors, loops, rolls, Immelman etc. Old flight sims used to have all this stuff in the manual. but you're probably better looking online these days. Also read up on defelection shooting, and even read some books by sucessful fighter pilots - there are loads of them out there.

Then practice, practice, practice. When you can do all the maneuvers instinctively, go up against the AI. When you can kill the AI regularly and without getting killed yourself, try online. Always remember to stay on the attack, fly aggressively and follow through your attacks. If you fly defensively or half-heartedly, you will lose the initiative and will shortly end up as a snack for one of the real predators.

It's long winded, but the only you will become a top sim pilot is the same as it was for real pilots - constant practice and study of theory. Very few aces are 'naturals' - Albert Ball is one who springs to mind, but there aren't many others. At leats you have the luxury of learning from 'fatal' mistakes :lol:

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