arcade thunder

arcade thunder, arcade, thunder

Greetings War Thunderers. This is Longshot with you again, with my guide to flying the BF110 C-4 in Arcade. The 110s were versatile aircraft, designed for air superiority, interception and ground strike capabilities. In past versions of War Thunder this plane was noted for exceptionally strong rudders that were capable of turning the plane on a postage stamp, and powerful engines with good acceleration, climbrate and high altitude performance. Combined with its weaponry those attributes made it a Tier 1 plane to be feared. The plane itself has a long wing generating plenty of lift, and of course the cluster of weapons on its nose, four light machineguns and two FF/M 20mm cannon with plenty of ammunition. The flight model has changed considerably from the old days, so in this video I’ll demonstrate the plane’s capabilities as they are now in Patch 1.47, and to begin I’ll look at the armor. There’s several plates in front of the cockpit along with hardened glass to protect the pilot in headons, along with armor behind and underneath both pilot and gunner. Its still possible to lose your pilot in headons nonetheless, but the internal components reveal the real weaknesses on this plane. Firstly let me draw your attention to the fuel tanks, which are highly exposed to head-on attacks creating a real risk of being set alight, and they’re no better protected from behind either. Furthermore in front of each engine is an oil reservoir, making it extremely easy to take damage that will quickly destroy your engines. This makes head-on engagements, which are usually a strength of heavy fighters, quite a gamble in this plane. Lastly there’s only one thick line of spars in each wing, which are actually quite fragile and easily destroyed if you expose your wings to an enemy. The plane used to be able to tank a lot of damage, hence the introduction music, but it not like that anymore, it has weaknesses that you need to protect if you want to survive. And with that I’ll take it to a test flight where I’ll put it through its paces and see how it handles. Firstly I’ll look at its roll rate … which is on the slow side, though it does respond promptly to a change of roll direction. Next I’m banking the plane and I’ll turn it horizontally using the elevators alone. I’m looking to see how quickly it loses speed in the turn, and how close it comes to catching its smoke trail which will give me an idea of the strength of the elevators. Its certainly not even close to catching its smoke, so the elevators are fairly weak and no use in a turnfight situation. Its also lost quite a lot of speed after just one turn. I’ll drop landing flaps and see if that improves its turning performance.

arcade thunderAnd with that I’ll take it to a test flight where I’ll put it through its paces and see how it handles. Firstly I’ll look at its roll rate … which is on the slow side, though it does respond promptly to a change of roll direction. Next I’m banking the plane and I’ll turn it horizontally using the elevators alone. I’m looking to see how quickly it loses speed in the turn, and how close it comes to catching its smoke trail which will give me an idea of the strength of the elevators. Its certainly not even close to catching its smoke, so the elevators are fairly weak and no use in a turnfight situation. Its also lost quite a lot of speed after just one turn. I’ll drop landing flaps and see if that improves its turning performance. As expected its losing speed rapidly now with the extra drag from the flaps, but have they created enough lift to provide a sharp turn? No, not really. Combined with the slow roll rate this plane’s looking like a poor turner. How about the rudder which used to be amazing back in Patch 1.39 and earlier? I’ll apply left rudder and up elevator together, and the plane wants to climb more than it wants to yaw to the side. So as weak as the elevators are, the rudder is worse. I’ll keep this maneuver going into a climbing spiral, which will show its low speed handling and the power of its engines. Its speed drops quickly and once it does the plane no longer wants to climb or turn, it becomes a brick with wings. Therefore I’ll want to keep the 110 as fast as possible in combat and avoid unnecessary maneuvers. A slow Bf110 is usually a dead 110. Alright next I’ll look at its high speed handling, putting the plane into a vertical dive and rolling to see if its ailerons stiffen up as it accelerates. Past 400km/h its roll slows down a little but its still not too bad around 600km/h. The rudder is fairly responsive too, so the high speed handling is actually fairly good. I’ll pull the plane up into a vertical zoom climb to see how well it retains the energy from the dive and measure the amount of altitude it can recover. I started the climb at 1150m. As we watch its losing speed quickly, but I’ll push it right up to the point of stall and then see how well it recovers. … Its completely out of control for a few seconds then takes an age before I can finally lift the nose and level off for a gain of less than 1500m, which is pretty ordinary. The engines used to be very powerful on the 110, but now they seem lacklustre & it really does feel like an early war plane. Next I’ll show you various snippets of battle footage demonstrating effective ways to use this plane along with situations that reveal its shortcomings and can also get you in trouble. To begin, I’ve set the light machineguns to Stealth, there’s no point having too much tracer in the air, and the cannon to air targets. The first thing I’ll show is its climbing ability as I try to reach bomber altitude, as the plane used to be a brilliant bomber interceptor. Its best climbing speed is between 220 and 240km/h, but its not a great climber anymore. From a 2000m spawn you’ll reach 3500m after 2 WEP periods, compared to many other fighters such as MiG-3s and Spitfires which can get to 4000m in that time. And the 110’s climbing and acceleration does not improve higher up, indeed it slowly degrades. The plane used to be a terror at bomber altitude, but it no longer is. So while it climbs, here’s my summary of the tactics I’m going to use with the Bf110. Firstly I’m going to try to climb and intercept bombers if possible, but if there’s enemy fighters above me I’ll dive and look to engage at lower altitudes. When I do so, I’ll engage at high speeds only, preferably with a 1000m to 1500m altitude advantage I can use for diving attacks. Under no circumstances will I try to dogfight with an enemy, using either vertical or horizontal maneuvers or stalling tactics, as the plane simply isn’t capable of such things. Its an interceptor, pure and simple, which means being careful and sticking to hit and run tactics. When aiming I want the plane to be stable, as its very hard to get guns on target while adjusting its roll or pitch. I’ll avoid head-ons where possible unless its against lightly armed planes.

arcade thunderSo while it climbs, here’s my summary of the tactics I’m going to use with the Bf110. Firstly I’m going to try to climb and intercept bombers if possible, but if there’s enemy fighters above me I’ll dive and look to engage at lower altitudes. When I do so, I’ll engage at high speeds only, preferably with a 1000m to 1500m altitude advantage I can use for diving attacks. Under no circumstances will I try to dogfight with an enemy, using either vertical or horizontal maneuvers or stalling tactics, as the plane simply isn’t capable of such things. Its an interceptor, pure and simple, which means being careful and sticking to hit and run tactics. When aiming I want the plane to be stable, as its very hard to get guns on target while adjusting its roll or pitch. I’ll avoid head-ons where possible unless its against lightly armed planes. As the second WEP period ends, you can see that I’ve been climbing sideways to the battle due to the slow climbrate of the plane. I’m hoping to reach bomber altitude by the time the bombers arrive, and that they aren’t accompanied by enemy fighters. That 111 is diving, I won’t follow as there’s two other targets up here. I’m watching the 109 closely as he’s obviously a threat if he decides to take me on. I’ve only just reached bomber altitude, and I’m struggling to accelerate. The plane is simply too slow, and the Beaufort is going to fly off and leave me behind. I will however get a shot at this Stuka, but only just. … And that’s why you want to hunt bombers if you get the chance, your cannons really do make short work of them. But there was another problem up here in the form of a MiG-3-34. After I dived to attack another bomber I saw him above me as I tried to regain altitude, and very soon he was headed in my direction. A head-on against his 2 cannon probably wouldn’t work out well for me, anyway there’s no time to turn toward him, so I went into a steep dive, but I was too late, he’s committed to the attack. … I broke sharply up and left to avoid him, but in doing so I lost my speed and also lost track of where he was. … By the time I found him again he was headed back for another pass. I tried to Split-S beneath his attack and resume my dive, but he anticipated that and my wings were exposed – and that’s what I mean by the wings being fragile. That’s also why I dive out quickly now if there’s fighters at altitude, the 110 simply can’t compete with them. The Alpine Meadows map spawns you quite high to begin with, and on this occasion there were no enemies up here to oppose me, so this was a good chance to see what the plane could do if it had altitude superiority. And there’s nothing quite like a line of PBYs to start with. As slow as this plane is, those things are slower still. I headed toward the enemy side of the battlefield and saw another one, along with a He111 which was under attack from a friendly Ki-45, which by the way I now rate as far better twin engined fighters than the Bf110. While circling around I saw a friendly 110 with a couple of fighters on his tail. I dived in to intercept, and despite diving its taking some time to build up speed and close the range. He turns towards me, and then I saw that by some miracle he’d set one of them on fire. Unfortunately that was also my clearest target, so I took him out then went into a climb to recover my altitude, thinking I’d drop down and finish off the second plane quickly, but for some reason I was blind and simply couldn’t see where they’d gone. … he’s got to be somewhere … ah there he is, in front of my nose. But what’s this? Not one, or two, but three climbing Peashooters trying to join the attack. I can only hit two of them on this pass but that’ll have to do.

arcade thunder While circling around I saw a friendly 110 with a couple of fighters on his tail. I dived in to intercept, and despite diving its taking some time to build up speed and close the range. He turns towards me, and then I saw that by some miracle he’d set one of them on fire. Unfortunately that was also my clearest target, so I took him out then went into a climb to recover my altitude, thinking I’d drop down and finish off the second plane quickly, but for some reason I was blind and simply couldn’t see where they’d gone. … he’s got to be somewhere … ah there he is, in front of my nose. But what’s this? Not one, or two, but three climbing Peashooters trying to join the attack. I can only hit two of them on this pass but that’ll have to do.

arcade thunderWhile circling around I saw a friendly 110 with a couple of fighters on his tail. I dived in to intercept, and despite diving its taking some time to build up speed and close the range. He turns towards me, and then I saw that by some miracle he’d set one of them on fire. Unfortunately that was also my clearest target, so I took him out then went into a climb to recover my altitude, thinking I’d drop down and finish off the second plane quickly, but for some reason I was blind and simply couldn’t see where they’d gone. … he’s got to be somewhere … ah there he is, in front of my nose. But what’s this? Not one, or two, but three climbing Peashooters trying to join the attack. I can only hit two of them on this pass but that’ll have to do. And once again I’ve lost the 110 that I’m trying to save. Ah ok, he’s behind me. You might be wondering why he didn’t do something to lose his attackers, well the truth is there’s not much he could have done, as you’ll see in a few minutes when I’ll be in the same situation. … After I take his attacker down I notice a couple of enemies that have taken advantage of my preoccupation to climb above me and attack a PBY. So I zoom climb as high as possible while checking my surroundings before I look to fly over and engage them. The Ki-43 is dangerous because of its flying characteristics, the 110 because of its weapons. I decide to take out the 110 first, then hopefully catch the Hayabusa by surprise if he keeps attacking the PBY or maybe comes at me head-on. This next example shows the unreliability of the cannon. It looks like another simple kill, dropping in on a climbing plane from above and behind. But the 37mm sparks and I simply cannot drop him before he belatedly reacts and dodges away. This is also the worst angle to attack from, directly behind a target where you’ll often miss or do no damage at all. Nevertheless I landed two clean hits with nothing to show for it, whereas with 20mm cannon that plane would have been a smoking wreck. As I approach I keep hitting WEP and climbing as hard as I can, as I need as much of an energy advantage as possible in case the situation turns ugly. The 110 looks like he’s struggling for speed so he should be an easy kill, but in retrospect perhaps I should have taken the Ki-43 first. Ok the 110’s down, but in the same moment the Hayabusa succeeded in killing the PBY. Let’s see if he’ll go for a head-on. No, and I don’t have the energy to loop in an effort to get guns on him. I have to dive and dive immediately. … As I expected I soon see tracer flicking past, but on the way down there’s a Peashooter that needs to learn to check the skies above his plane. So have I gained enough speed to leave the Hayabusa behind? Not a chance, those planes aren’t as slow as many people believe them to be. He’s really close so I’m snaprolling to throw off his aim and maybe force an overshoot. … Which indeed is what happens. I scissor back to keep out of his gunsights, but in the blink of an eye he’s on my tail again. This time I cut my engine as I snap roll. Unfortunately he clips my tail as he overshoots, his plane is fine, but mine is now a mess. It recovers quickly enough out of the spin, and then I’m thinking I might even get a shot at this guy. … Come on nose, lift up … oh hang on … a black tail really does mean I’ve lost my elevators. The lift from the wings was responsible for raising the nose, so that was the end of my contribution to the battle in this plane. The lesson here is, don’t get a single engined fighter on your tail.

arcade thunderSo have I gained enough speed to leave the Hayabusa behind? Not a chance, those planes aren’t as slow as many people believe them to be. He’s really close so I’m snaprolling to throw off his aim and maybe force an overshoot. … Which indeed is what happens. I scissor back to keep out of his gunsights, but in the blink of an eye he’s on my tail again. This time I cut my engine as I snap roll. Unfortunately he clips my tail as he overshoots, his plane is fine, but mine is now a mess. It recovers quickly enough out of the spin, and then I’m thinking I might even get a shot at this guy. … Come on nose, lift up … oh hang on … a black tail really does mean I’ve lost my elevators. The lift from the wings was responsible for raising the nose, so that was the end of my contribution to the battle in this plane. The lesson here is, don’t get a single engined fighter on your tail. Here’s a Domination map where the action is all at lower altitude. My usual approach is to boom and zoom, and in this battle no enemy fighters climbed so it was easy to take position over the central airfield. I’m looking around trying to decide which target will give me the highest probability of a successful attack, and I go for the Yak 7 directly beneath me. … The Spitfire on the runway was an option but I’m probably going too fast to get guns on him, so I stay on the Yak and catch him as he tries to climb. As I extend I see two planes near the A airfield and decide to continue on and try for an intercept. I’m hitting WEP to keep my speed as high as possible. The MiG is under attack so I ignore him, and go for the LaGG hoping he’ll turn in front of me and expose the full profile of his plane. See how reactive the plane is to aim adjustments? Fortunately he flies straight for a second and I’m able to line him up. Then into a zoom climb, and this will gain me far too little in the way of altitude. I barely make it up to 1300m before I’m forced to level the plane. You will face many single engined planes with far better energy retention and engine power than the 110, this really is a weakness but unfortunately one you have to try and work around. Ok so I’ve flown back over the central airfield again, looking for another high speed boom and zoom attack. There’s a lot of planes down there so I’ll dive in and see what happens. It looks like all these targets are going to fly underneath me, and with my slow roll speed I can’t change my direction to follow them, so I switch to the easy target sitting on the runway. There’s a P-38 there who’ll probably try to turn and chase me, but I have far too much speed for that to happen, indeed all he ends up doing is stalling out and making himself an easy target for a passing P-400. Right, what’s next? There’s a P-36 approaching beneath me, another plane over at A, and that’s about it for the moment. … Ok, the P-36 and an Ishak are chasing the P-400, so I’ll see if I can peel one of them off his tail. If the P-400 flew straight I might have done so, but he breaks to the left and I can’t get guns on target. I take a risk here by pulling up hoping to settle in behind them for an easier shot, and in doing so I lose a lot of speed. Ok that’s the P-36 down, but the Ishak is now on my tail and I’m not fast enough to escape … fortunately friendlies quickly take care of him for me. There’s several enemies at A now, so I’ll extend in their direction. … A Chaika – great. It looks like he’s intent on killing ground units though, lets hope it stays that way. … That should be enough to deal with the SB2M, now lets see if I can intercept these annoying little fighters. If I were flying an average single engined plane I’d rate my chances of killing this Chaika quite highly, after all he’s taking no notice of me whatsoever, but the 110 is just too clumsy and try as I might I cannot get guns on target. Its like trying to hit a mosquito with a sledgehammer. … Now the Chaika’s going to cap the airfield, and I simply can’t stop him … my plane just isn’t fast enough to close the distance in time. The game’s just about over now, so I’ll see if I can get one last kill before it ends. I’m showing you this last part do demonstrate the awkwardness of the 110 in these situations. It really does prefer clean high speed engagements against unsuspecting targets, that’s the role its designed for. And here’s another example of the fragility of its wings. I’m going to finish with two full games, though I’ll skip the parts where I’m extending and zoom climbing. Both are on the Britain Domination map and in both I ended up with 9 kills, but that’s where the similarity ends. In this first one, I’ve started out by climbing but there’s a stack of enemy fighters at altitude so I’m diving in to attack planes near the runway. … My approach was too quick and the shots didn’t line up, I’ll use that speed to loop back, and I have a nice deflection shot on the 109 for the first kill. … Then I fly back towards my spawn to carefully climb and prepare for the next engagement, keeping an eye on the planes at altitude as I want to avoid attracting their attention. stop talking Well my team didn’t win, but I’m happy with how I flew the plane in this battle. I didn’t make a mistake and avoided coming under attack until the very end when I took a few risks pushing for a 10th kill, and topped the leaderboard on my team. Despite the limitations of this plane, it can certainly get the job done if you stick to its strengths. The next battle was rather different. It all went wrong from the word go, when a climbing P-40 came straight for me leaving no option but to accept the head-on. … His plane was shot down but mine’s in serious trouble. I cut the throttle and turned the engine off, and fortunately the fire went out but not before it had inflicted substantial damage that made the handling quite sluggish and ensured the imminent loss of both engines. I continued on over to the enemy side of the battlefield looking for a boom and zoom target, and this Typhoon kindly provided one…. And then I continued down hoping for a shot at one of these biplanes, with both engines now turning red … Down to one engine, and continuing my run towards the Bf110. … Matching my wing angle to his, taking my time … and there’s the 3rd kill. Both engines are black though I’m getting a little power from them still, enough to limp out towards my end of the runway. Obviously I know I’m on borrowed time, so its a matter of doing as much damage as I can before I hit the ground, and what better way than taking a stroll down the runway right into the stream of incoming enemy planes? Ok, so here we go … and goodness me the plane’s handling is sloppy as hell right now, I can barely get guns on target. At one point I think about landing to cap but the fire must have destroyed my landing gear. Anyway, lets watch & see what happens. Checking the stats after I spawned in my next plane I saw 9 kills to my name, which is a lot of carnage for a plane crippled at the start of the game. Anyway, I hope you’ve enjoyed the video and found it helpful. Until my next one, I’ll see you in the skies.