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Battlehawks 1942: dive bombing tips

 
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KAN
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PostPosted: Fri Nov 21, 2008 12:08 pm     Post subject: Battlehawks 1942: dive bombing tips Reply with quote

Battlehawks 1942: Dive Bombing Tips
by Lieutenant Kreshna "Iceheart" of Imperial Japan Navy. Or US Navy, depending on mood.

Well, like I said in this thread, I purchased Lucasfilm Games' Air Combat Classic, and I started the package with Battlehawks 1942. Despite lousy graphics and PC speaker sound, I found the game to be exciting......

....except the motherf***ing dive-bombing mission.

See, I've done everything by the book. I start diving from 7000 feet, and struggle to make a 70 degree dive while keeping my plane perfectly lined up with the target. And then, while

still in a 70 degree dive, I release my bomb at around 2000 to 1000 feet....

....and miss. Aaaargh!!

Turned out that the "Tactics" section in the Air Combat Classic manual is full of shit. Well, at least when it goes to dive bombing section. Yes, you CAN hit the target if you drop your bomb somewhere between 2000 and 1000 feet while diving at 70 degree, but ONLY if you make a PERFECT approach to the target. Not only this requires you to gauge the precise moment when you should start diving, but the target makes your life more difficult by moving, not to mention avoiding the flak and enemy fighters.

It is not surprising that such tactics only work in the "Dive Bombing Fundamentals" training, where the carrier sits still and where you are free to make an ideal approach to the carrier.

Guess what? Such thing just doesn't work in actual combat, where the carrier is moving, where you approach the carrier from less than ideal angle, and where you are busy avoiding flak bursts and enemy fighters.

I tried "Dive Bombing Fundamentals" training mission ad nauseam, tried "Dive Bombing in Combat" ad nauseam, and keep questioning myself, "why dive bombing is so hard in BH1942 while it was cakewalk in Their Finest Hour?" Yes, the first time I played TFH, it was without manual (borrowed the floppies from a friend and lent him Cabal in return), so I played the game with "gut instinct" and found dive-bombing to be a breeze (in contrary to level bombing).

Fortunately, I eventually remember that the easiest way to guarantee a hit is releasing your bomb at point-blank range. That is, below 1000 feet and when you are really up close and personal with the target.


Warning: ONLY release the bomb when you are THIS close!

The good news about dive-bombing point blank is that you don't really need to dive at all! See the pic below; I only "dived" at 10 degree at most, and it was a guaranteed hit no matter what the manual says.


"Dive"? What is this "dive" people keep talking about?

Better news, you don't have to worry about making an ideal dive-bombing approach. Since you don't have to worry about estimating when and where to start the damn 70 degree dive, you are free to pursue more productive activities, like gunning down enemy fighters. Of course, Vals and Avengers can't exactly dogfight, but Battlehawks 1942 was made long before the mantra of "realism, realism, and realism!" plagued (and considerably shrinked) the flightsim genre, so yes, I don't need Zeros or Stukas to be an ace despite my sucky-sucky deflection shooting skill.

Oh, and don't worry about collateral damage. The manual says that real WW2 pilots release their bomb above 1000 feet to avoid damage from the explosion. Fortunately, in this game, I just fail to notice any (the damage, not the explosion).

So get back on the plane, pilot, and do it right this time!


It is strangely satisfying to see a carrier smoking like that, and it feels even better when you're the one who pulled the trigger.


Note:
The pics above were taken from the training mission "Dive Bombing in Combat"; the entire mission was recorded using DOSBOX movie recorder, and then the frames were "extracted" using PrintScreen button while playing the movie in Windows Media Player.

Use thumbnails please, THX,next time I won't edit but delete. ~dosraider
Done. I never thought photobucket has built-in thumbnail facility. Interesting. ~KAN


Last edited by KAN on Sat Nov 22, 2008 12:40 am; edited 2 times in total
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dosraider
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PostPosted: Fri Nov 21, 2008 2:04 pm     Post subject: Reply with quote

Waw, that's a blast from the past.
If I remember swell I used the same trick as on Jetfighter (2?) to avoid this annoying dive bomb exercise.
Fly horizontally over the target, some 750/1000 feet ( .... 1250? Don't remember) and drop when the target goes underneath your cockpit sight.
Or something ... you can't miss that way, if you ain't shot down that is.
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AdamN
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PostPosted: Fri Nov 21, 2008 8:41 pm     Post subject: Reply with quote

I did the same thing on most of the Micropose Jet games.
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KAN
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PostPosted: Fri Nov 21, 2008 10:34 pm     Post subject: Reply with quote

dosraider wrote:
Waw, that's a blast from the past.
If I remember swell I used the same trick as on Jetfighter (2?) to avoid this annoying dive bomb exercise.
Fly horizontally over the target, some 750/1000 feet ( .... 1250? Don't remember) and drop when the target goes underneath your cockpit sight.
Or something ... you can't miss that way, if you ain't shot down that is.

Yup, it's actually more like "cheat" that exploits the game's "unrealistic" nature. Level bombing in Their Finest Hour is also easier when performed at extremely low level altitude. In fact, CGW tips also suggest flying low for level bombing.


AdamN wrote:
I did the same thing on most of the Micropose Jet games.

Do you play F-19 or F-117A? You can also skip the "threading the needle" part by flying at unrealistically low altitude (below 100'), making you virtually invisible to radars. You might get spotted when flying against Elite enemies though.

Old flightsims are not very realistic, but they have their niceties.
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dosraider
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PostPosted: Sun Nov 23, 2008 12:12 pm     Post subject: Reply with quote

Damn you Kan, you made me replay this one:


As if I really had all that time to lose....
And now to add some neat extra planes to fly, more time lost.

Djees, couldn't you post on another forum? Angry
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KAN
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PostPosted: Sun Nov 23, 2008 10:15 pm     Post subject: Reply with quote

dosraider wrote:
Djees, couldn't you post on another forum? Angry

You cannot resist the temptation of old games, dosraider. You will play... you will play.... you will play.... swings the pendulum

By the way, how is the campaign so far? (you're playing campaign, right?)
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dosraider
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 24, 2008 1:35 am     Post subject: Reply with quote

KAN wrote:
(you're playing campaign, right?)

Not yet, I first go through all the other stuff to get it back in my fingers.
More lost precious time.
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KAN
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 24, 2008 12:57 pm     Post subject: Reply with quote

dosraider wrote:
KAN wrote:
(you're playing campaign, right?)

Not yet, I first go through all the other stuff to get it back in my fingers.

Heh. It took me a couple of months until I can carrier-land the F-117A again, but then again, I only play games once or twice a week these days. Sad

However, the latest mission was rewarding indeed. Shit-Eating Grin
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dosraider
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 24, 2008 2:55 pm     Post subject: Reply with quote

SWOTL is postponed. Sad

That's why Shit-Eating Grin
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KAN
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 24, 2008 9:39 pm     Post subject: Reply with quote

dosraider wrote:
SWOTL is postponed. Sad

That's why Shit-Eating Grin

Jane's USAF?

Lucky bastard. Shit-Eating Grin
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