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Old 06-07-2020, 01:24 AM   #1
Doc3908
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Default Those B-17s...

Hi guys,
I've been trying to fly the stock instant action missions that have me going up against a bunch of B-17s. I get destroyed EVERY TIME. I do a head-on pass, take out one B-17, and that's it. Chasing behind them in the A8 is a suicide. I try coming in from the side but it's much harder to hit anything and they rip me to pieces as I fly past. And it takes forever to line up for another head-on pass.

So... can anyone give me some pointers on tactics for attacking the B-17s and actually surviving???
Thanks,
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Old 06-07-2020, 01:39 AM   #2
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The AI gunners are surely snipers right now. But I recently read Speer's Book - Inside the Third Reich and in it he mentions that Galland and himself estimated one German fighter would be lost of each enemy bomber destroyed. A statistic that seems amazing until you realize there is no safe way to approach these heavily armed bombers and they are very hard to destroy.



Speer/Galland actually thought they had the advantage with that attrition rate as the enemy crew (2 pilots) was usually lost or captured while the German crew (1 pilot) that survived parachuted and may return to duty. Anyway, a historical perspective that getting one bomber is pretty darn good.
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Old 06-07-2020, 01:46 AM   #3
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You already know what you need to do. Take the time to do it right, or die. In real life the Luftwaffe would often mass up in a huge formation, make one head on pass through the swarm to break it up, then finish off the wounded stragglers. Approaching in a straight line at slow closure right behind them is obviously suicidal.

Also, you're not going to kill them all, no point in trying. You make a pass or two, however long it takes to do it properly, then go home. In real life they were not trying to ''stop'' the swarm, that was impossible. It was about long term attrition, nothing more.

As for specific tactics, read up on what the real Luftwaffe did. Personally, after the initial head on pass, I climb several thousand feet up above them, approach directly above the swarm outside their gun range. Pick one out, dive down past it, then pull up for a sweeping run across the belly as I zoom climb past. If you're on target for more than a second or two, you're doing it wrong. Remember, if he's nice and stable for you, you're nice and stable for him.

All there is to it. Be patient and do it right, or don't do it. This isn't an action movie where you have plot armor and it's all special effects and splosions. If you perform a poorly planned attack, you can expect it to fail.

Also you should be aiming for critical points : cockpit, engine, wing root. Nothing else. Body shots or scattered fire is pointless.
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Old 06-07-2020, 04:38 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 3mta3 View Post
The AI gunners are surely snipers right now. But I recently read Speer's Book - Inside the Third Reich and in it he mentions that Galland and himself estimated one German fighter would be lost of each enemy bomber destroyed. A statistic that seems amazing until you realize there is no safe way to approach these heavily armed bombers and they are very hard to destroy.

Speer/Galland actually thought they had the advantage with that attrition rate as the enemy crew (2 pilots) was usually lost or captured while the German crew (1 pilot) that survived parachuted and may return to duty. Anyway, a historical perspective that getting one bomber is pretty darn good.
Wow! I always thought those big, lumbering B-17s were easy targets for small, fast, maneuverable fighters. Trading planes 1-for-1 doesn't seem like a good deal - certainly not for the Germans. Makes you wonder what those pilots - on both sides - were thinking as they climbed into their airplanes...
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Old 06-07-2020, 04:48 PM   #5
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You need to keep in mind that gunners in real life didn't have the same accuracy like they have ingame, plus they could die.

The best strategy for destroying B-17 without getting hit once is simply attack from up high and then dive through them and back up. You can (or at least could) rince and repeat and down many bombers this way without getting hit once.
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Old 06-07-2020, 04:49 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zhukov032186 View Post
Also, you're not going to kill them all, no point in trying. You make a pass or two, however long it takes to do it properly, then go home. In real life they were not trying to ''stop'' the swarm, that was impossible. It was about long term attrition, nothing more.
Yeah, that was my mistake. I was trying to get them all - even after my AI wingmen quit and went home...


Quote:
Originally Posted by zhukov032186 View Post
As for specific tactics, read up on what the real Luftwaffe did. Personally, after the initial head on pass, I climb several thousand feet up above them, approach directly above the swarm outside their gun range. Pick one out, dive down past it, then pull up for a sweeping run across the belly as I zoom climb past. If you're on target for more than a second or two, you're doing it wrong. Remember, if he's nice and stable for you, you're nice and stable for him.
Excellent tips! Personally, I find that the FW190A8 is not exactly a powerhouse that readily climbs, but I'll see what I can pull off tonight. I usually try to attack from the front and below...


Quote:
Originally Posted by zhukov032186 View Post
Also you should be aiming for critical points : cockpit, engine, wing root. Nothing else. Body shots or scattered fire is pointless.
Well that's where experience pays off. For me, having sixteen B-17s, four P-51s and eight FW-190s in the air at the same time is a big scramble. I can't focus enough on the B-17s to take such accurate shots while constantly turning around (physically, I play VR...) to see if those P51s are not on my tail. I guess practice makes perfect...

Thanks for the excellent points Zhukov and 3mta3.
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Old 06-07-2020, 04:51 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by razo+r View Post
You need to keep in mind that gunners in real life didn't have the same accuracy like they have ingame, plus they could die.

The best strategy for destroying B-17 without getting hit once is simply attack from up high and then dive through them and back up. You can (or at least could) rince and repeat and down many bombers this way without getting hit once.
Just read your post, Razo+r. Thanks - I'll give it a try later tonight!
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Old 09-16-2020, 02:48 PM   #8
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There's been several threads about this. Sitting on a bombers 6 is supposed to be suicidal, but still, DCS gunners are WAY too accurate. The way I balance it in my campaigns is that I set some of the flights to "weapons hold" some to "return fire" and some to "weapons free". This way not every gunner will fire at you, making things a bit more plausible.
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Old 09-16-2020, 04:42 PM   #9
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Have you tried changing the accuracy of the gunners?
It’s a variable within the mission editor
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Old 09-16-2020, 07:01 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr_sukebe View Post
Have you tried changing the accuracy of the gunners?
It’s a variable within the mission editor
You mean the skill setting of the unit? Even on "Rookie" they are like laser beams.
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