Between my noobishness in not fully understanding all of the complexity of engine management and the fact that the IL2 is the namesake of the game, I'm finding it difficult to figure out what I'm missing. I've followed the Chuck guide, have watched the Sim Shack videos and have a good log of time on DCS and Rise of Flight, so I understand the general things, but mostly I just do what I'm told until I figure out what I'm doing wrong and then everything works. Usually int he other games I have a well-versed friend or two that I can bounce my questions off of and we can figure out the issue. Except for the IL2. So I've just been doing quick missions to figure things out, putting the GUI on so I can catch the notifications and get a feel for things. So here's my problems. The GUI messages keep yelling at me for using combat power enroute, but apparently my engine management is so bad that I have to use combat power to stop the plane from falling out of the sky. I know the Sturmovik is a heavy boy but if I reduce throttle to levels where it no longer yells at me I slow down so much I stop flying and start falling, losing altitude on a level pitch. I've tried all kinds of settings, but even with full rich mixture, max Prop RPM, and closed radiators for less drag I struggle to keep the plane in the air without it yelling at me for combat power. The Chuck guide suggests 260kph for optimal climb @2050 RPM. I can't get the plane to go that fast on the level at that RPM so I must be missing something. Any ideas? What typical engine settings should I be using for which scenarios? Presumably full mixture for climb, but how much throttle? I know you're to lean your mixture at certain altitudes, but no one ever lists a rough amount so I just lean it out until just before I lose RPM. I should mention I'm flying the plane with 8 rockets and a tailgunner; I wanted to get the feel for flying a combat loadout.