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I've been flying the me262 career missions and would like to voice some issues related to flying in career mode.

 

1. Flight paths.  It seems like they're always set at too low an altitude to be believable.  The altitude is always too high for concealment and too low to do anything if attacked by fighters.  There's no climbing to altitude before crossing the front, no dropping down for ground attack.  Why do ground attack planes fly directly over the target and all of its flak and then loop around to attack?  Why do planes circle around the airfield at low altitude as each one lands?

 

2. Pursuing fighters.  Even though ai planes now peel away if you get too far away from them, they are still following the flight back to home base, usually attacking as the flight leader is landing.  It was fun a few times at least in the me262 career because it matched combat accounts, but I thought there were special units that did this.  It seems suicidal for the fighters that follow back to be that deep in enemy territory away from their assigned cover mission.  It gets tiring fast to have to deal with after running a successful mission and kills off ai wingmen for no good reason.

 

3. Formation flying.  Doesn't resemble anything I've done online with other human flyers.  FL should be at least calling out a speed, if not an engine setting.  Then if you're 3 or higher in the flight you are following wingmen that speed up and slow down constantly.  I've noticed the FL at least flies at constant speed.  Turns are are also frightening, as the whol flight will sort of break off into uncoordinated turns, drifting all over the place and making it hazardous to actually stay with FL.  It also seems like the speeds are always just below maximum cruise, making it impossible to form up easily if you get separated.

 

I know, I know, "use Pat Wilson's Campaign Generator," but I wanted to bring up these specific issues because career mode is still fun and accessible, and it seems like a lot of players still play it, and I wanted to see how correct or incorrect my assumptions are, especially with regards to flight paths and pursuing fighters, something I think people here have a lot more knowledge on.

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PWCG won't help with most of #1 and any of #2 or #3.  Those are AI issues that you would see in all missions. 

 

I was told that planes circle to get set up based on wind.  I have not heard any confirmation of this from the development team so I really don't know.  I do agree that I would like to see the AI use whatever ingress path is provided - to heck with the or anything else - and attack.  

 

There were special units to protect the 262s but no special units to attack them.  Allied fighters were encouraged to be very, very aggressive.  They would look for bounce opportunities at German bases, jet or otherwise, and use them.  What they did not do was slow, suicidal, low altitude circles over the airbase.  They would fly over, see what they could see and make a fast attack when the opportunity presented.  

 

I did put in a request for a proper finger four formation in the suggestions forum.  Maybe that can happen and help with #3 as it might make for a looser formation.

 

If you look at the AI fly a plane it is a series of constant overcorrections.  Put your plane on autopilot and watch.  The throttle is constantly moving from 1/4 to 3/4 and back.  Go to an external view and you see the control surfaces fluttering from the constant input.  Could definitely use work.  If done it would not only produce more realistic flying in the AI but also probably save on a lot of CPU as the decision cycle would not be nearly as rapid.  The down side is that it would probably require a near overhaul of the AI code, so don't hold your breath.

 

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53 minutes ago, PatrickAWlson said:

The throttle is constantly moving from 1/4 to 3/4 and back.  Go to an external view and you see the control surfaces fluttering from the constant input.

 

yup, can confirm. I decided to take a break from the MP and started re-flying the scripted campaigns. The wing-man formation flying with the AI is pretty painful, it's possible but painful, especially if the destination is 50km away. I wonder if it's because the AI tries to maintain the designated speed, hence it's doing everything to stay within +-1km/h of the mission parameters.

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I use autopilot a lot on my way to and from the action. I quit enjoy watching the scenery or dogfights between AI. I also noticed that the AI pilot always has the brakes on during flight. This is especially noticeable in aircraft with stick rake like the Il2, Spits etc.

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For flying with the AI in career mode, things become far more efficient once you are the flight lead.
The AI seems to have an easier time keeping pace with the player at a constant power setting, and you have the ability to pick altitudes and headings which make actual sense- as well as respond to an enemy presence by ordering your wingmen to break and attack (though results vary on whether or not your men will really attack).
Plus in the case of 4-ship flights you can order the unit into a V-formation for a sort of quasi Finger-Four (albeit reversed).

The AI will still do stupid things fairly often, but as the leader you can at least try to limit the impact those actions have.

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I didnt read the whole topic yet but Im gonna say this, AI is HORRIBLE with the 262. They are tourists, and they all get shot down and killed every single mission. I have a career past midpoint and I still find the way the AI uses this bird revolting every single time I fly a mission of it.

 

In the hand of the AI, the 262 becomes the WORST plane of all.

3 hours ago, Ram399 said:

The AI will still do stupid things fairly often, but as the leader you can at least try to limit the impact those actions have.

 

Not in the 262. You order them to engage fighters and they will do nothing and not even jettison loadouts. Its horrible.

 

Heres the deal. I currently have 381 air kills in my career. You wanna know how many enemy planes my squadron mates shot down since the beginning of this career? One.

 

ONE. No kidding.

 

But they all die every single mission though, insane casualties. I have been hauptmann since I joined KG51. The AI has a problem handling the fighter bomber role and its just 10 times worse with the 262. If you order them to engage fighters, they wont, they wont jettison their bombs If the ground target is somehow in your vicinity. The will simply fly straight at low speed waiting for tempests to practise-shoot them. They were bad in Kommando Nowotny, because they dont use the Me262 like they should, but its simply worse as a fighter bomber because they do NOTHING. Being the leader and order them wont help.

 

There is absolutely nothing good with the way the AI handles it, and you can do nothing about it. Its a real shame.

Edited by I./JG52_Woutwocampe
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There is something you can do about it that has been said multiple times regarding the issue, record a track and report it in the bug section. It isn't rocket science and takes less that 10 minutes. Complaining in every topic having to do with the AI about them flying the 262 isn't helping fix the issue. 

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1 hour ago, Q_Walker said:

There is something you can do about it that has been said multiple times regarding the issue, record a track and report it in the bug section. It isn't rocket science and takes less that 10 minutes. Complaining in every topic having to do with the AI about them flying the 262 isn't helping fix the issue. 

 

Thats true and I wanted to provide a track. So I just flew a mission but, I was alone to take off because we only had one plane left. Lol. We got replenished though so I should have a track soon. 

 

 

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11 hours ago, CAFulcrum said:

FL should be at least calling out a speed, if not an engine setting.  

 

Just not possible for a few reasons that I'm not going to spin on about here.

 

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12 hours ago, Gambit21 said:

 

 

Just not possible for a few reasons that I'm not going to spin on about here.

 

 

Is it related to the game engine or realism?

 

My experience flying online has always been heading and either speed or throttle setting, and I remember il2 1946 operating the same way.  But I don't know if that's how it's done in real life, and I can see a need for radio silence.

20 hours ago, [Pb]RedeyeStorm said:

I use autopilot a lot on my way to and from the action. I quit enjoy watching the scenery or dogfights between AI. I also noticed that the AI pilot always has the brakes on during flight. This is especially noticeable in aircraft with stick rake like the Il2, Spits etc.

 

I've been using expert mode but I might switch back to custom settings for autopilot.  Arm strain can be an issue as well though in the me262 that isn't an issue (no yaw/torque to counteract, moving stabilizer).

14 hours ago, I./JG52_Woutwocampe said:

I didnt read the whole topic yet but Im gonna say this, AI is HORRIBLE with the 262. They are tourists, and they all get shot down and killed every single mission. I have a career past midpoint and I still find the way the AI uses this bird revolting every single time I fly a mission of it.

 

In the hand of the AI, the 262 becomes the WORST plane of all.

 

Not in the 262. You order them to engage fighters and they will do nothing and not even jettison loadouts. Its horrible.

 

Heres the deal. I currently have 381 air kills in my career. You wanna know how many enemy planes my squadron mates shot down since the beginning of this career? One.

 

ONE. No kidding.

 

But they all die every single mission though, insane casualties. I have been hauptmann since I joined KG51. The AI has a problem handling the fighter bomber role and its just 10 times worse with the 262. If you order them to engage fighters, they wont, they wont jettison their bombs If the ground target is somehow in your vicinity. The will simply fly straight at low speed waiting for tempests to practise-shoot them. They were bad in Kommando Nowotny, because they dont use the Me262 like they should, but its simply worse as a fighter bomber because they do NOTHING. Being the leader and order them wont help.

 

There is absolutely nothing good with the way the AI handles it, and you can do nothing about it. Its a real shame.

 

I'm not so surprised about the ai not flying the 262 well, I'd say it's one of the most challenging wwii aircraft to fly because it requires a different mindset from prop planes to be successful in.  You have to just stay fast the entire time and not get bogged, and make sneak, high speed attacks, but il2 ai love getting bogged in and executing maximum alpha turn fighting tactics.  Though I will say they've improved a lot over the last couple of years.  And at least now you can sneak up on ai and at least they now peel off after a certain distance of pursuit.

 

23 hours ago, PatrickAWlson said:

PWCG won't help with most of #1 and any of #2 or #3.  Those are AI issues that you would see in all missions. 

 

I was told that planes circle to get set up based on wind.  I have not heard any confirmation of this from the development team so I really don't know.  I do agree that I would like to see the AI use whatever ingress path is provided - to heck with the or anything else - and attack.  

 

There were special units to protect the 262s but no special units to attack them.  Allied fighters were encouraged to be very, very aggressive.  They would look for bounce opportunities at German bases, jet or otherwise, and use them.  What they did not do was slow, suicidal, low altitude circles over the airbase.  They would fly over, see what they could see and make a fast attack when the opportunity presented.  

 

I did put in a request for a proper finger four formation in the suggestions forum.  Maybe that can happen and help with #3 as it might make for a looser formation.

 

If you look at the AI fly a plane it is a series of constant overcorrections.  Put your plane on autopilot and watch.  The throttle is constantly moving from 1/4 to 3/4 and back.  Go to an external view and you see the control surfaces fluttering from the constant input.  Could definitely use work.  If done it would not only produce more realistic flying in the AI but also probably save on a lot of CPU as the decision cycle would not be nearly as rapid.  The down side is that it would probably require a near overhaul of the AI code, so don't hold your breath.

 

 

Thanks for correcting that, I guess I got the special units mixed up!  Would allied fighters follow the 262s all the way back to base though, or were the 262s that got shot down on approach just singled out by random fighter sweeps?  I actually thought it was pretty neat the first couple of times because I thought it was a random 'airfield bounce' encounter, like what ROF had in its career mode.  But I realized afterwards they were the 'cover' fighters following the flight back to the airbase at Rhine.  I'm pretty sure one of them even ran out of gas once as he'd bailed before I came back and the prop was fixed.

 

I've noticed the puffs of exhaust and wondered about the throttle, didn't know they were changing that much!  Isn't there some way to 'damper' things so they don't get into a constant oscillation, or would that require more fidelity in the ai and actually need more CPU power?

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As far as I am aware it was a cat and mouse game.  The allies had enough air power to release fighters on aggressive sweeps.  The Germans tried to counter by switching bases, sometimes even using autobahns as runways, tons of flak not just at the base but all the way through the approach, and in the case of the Me262s they had FW190s flying cover on takeoff and landing.  

 

From the allied point of view they had a fair idea where planes were stationed but never really exact.  After all, the Germans couldn't move the units every other day but they weren't going to make it easy for the allies either if they could help it.  Allies would have been aware of the German defenses and acted accordingly.  It was timing as well as location so there was more than a little luck involved.  Go overfly a known base or two and see what you see.  If an opportunity presents then take it.  Quite often if they could not find Germans taking off or landing they would just shoot up the base.  Flak was feared and respected.  Any attack on an airbase was strictly one pass.  

 

As to how the allied pilots found the German bases, I would think they used whatever means they could.  I don't think the fighters followed 262s for very long because they couldn't.  The 262s were too fast.  But one can always find the odd 262 pilot who was not paying attention or get lucky and be led to the base before you lost him.  In many cases they just knew where the bases were and would do a flyover.  You couldn't take off a 262 from a rough field, so there were a limited number of places where they could be flying from.  

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It's also important to note that the RAF did keep Tempests on standby to intercept jets that were spotted orbiting airfields like Achmer and Rheine. These were known as 'rat catcher' missions. 

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