pizzicato, simhq.com, 2001
let me count the ways
set up a 6-plane synchronized strike,
with up to 15 waypoints
let the autopilot leave you to manage other things.
modes: track waypoint, land, terrain-following-radar,
altitude/heading and auto-throttle.
flying at 600 knots,
100 feet off the ground
ongoing war of attrition
from Digital Integration, the leader of accurate and fun
over 10,000 ground objects
air-to-ground: dumb, retarded, laser guided, loft;
air-to-air: skyflash, sidewinders
332 pages of pure adrenalin
that sets the bar for manuals for years
from the tcsc group and associates
16-bit assembly language; uses < 640Kb memory
How do you prevent yourself from getting shot down so easily? If you are on a timed mission going at 550 kts and at 200 ft above hilly ground and you receive a missle warning on the threat warning indicator, what are you supposed to do, if you disconnect the autopilot and try to avoid it you either fall behind schedule, crash into a hill or both. What are you supposed to do?
Here's what to do!
Avoid SAM areas; set up your time schedule so that you arrive with 650 kts.; shut off reheat; don't disengage auto-pilot.
Tornado is a flight-sim (*the* flight-sim) where mission planning is far more important (and fun - at least for me) than flying.
First off, if you think that a given target is too heavy defended, choose another one.
Split your flights so that you arrive from at least 4 different directions at the same time; pay attention that if you do so you have to set different altitudes for the target waypoint, else the SAM crews can watch a spectacular fire-work without wasting their missiles. Pay especially attention to your ingress waypoints; the last one before the target already should line you up (more or less - more is better :-) perfectely with your target.
If possible (and in the "european style" war zones it is almost ever), hide behind hills until the target is directely in front of you. If you obey all this and make your bombing run with 650+ kts, the SAM-crews won't have the time to send their deadly load after you. BTW: there is no reason why you shouldn't attack a target up to three times at the same flight. Your attack pattern then should look like a shamrock. Just make sure that during the turns you are well hidden behind some hills and your fly-by speed never drops below 600 kts.
Of course that demands that you spend very much time in the mission-planner because you have to fiddle all those time-critical components together. You will get some error-warnings about fuel etc. but if you try long enough, it will work. (My personal high-score was something around 2 hours for a 20 minutes misison - that I completed sucessful.)
Written by Joerg "Dancer" Stenger
Hitech Simulation Digest Volume 2 : Issue 49 (September 1994)
Campaign mode, level 2 - Operation Desert Storm.
Orders were to hit some non-descript military buildings way up north with Cluster Bombs, so I planned a route that took the four-ship over some oil wells to drop parachute-retarded bombs on. Took off the Sidewinders, loaded up on ALARMs and topped off the fuel tanks.
Took off in very foggy weather - no worries about SAMs, then. On the way to the wells we were spiked by EWR at our 8 o'clock - too troublesome to turn and fire an ALARM, so I left it for later. Flipped on the air radar and panicked - a bogey at 11 o'clock!
The SQUINTO (squadron intelligence officer) had said that we had air superiority, and I hadn't seen a Mig for several missions. No Sidewinders on any ship - just ALARMs. Hit the ECM on. What to do? Then I remembered the fog - Sidewinders wouldn't work anyway. Arm the cannon. The bogey wasn't closing any, so I took a chance and locked it up to get some info. 6 miles away, 300 feet, 280 knots, heading away from me. Phew - can't be a Mig!
We continued flying, speed up to 550kts, arm direct ALARMs just in case. Almost forget to re-select ordinance as we reach the target, Three of us hit well-heads, the fourth took out the pipeline further along, all laying 2 x 1000lb RETs. Not a squeek from the RWR, nice fires from burning oil.
Rapidly turning onto the military buildings, still no RWR noise. Where are those AAA and SAMs that were meant to be around. Look at the map - a-ha, a hill ahead. We must be in the shadow. Pop up to 400 feet, and a solitary AAA lights up. Soon have it ALARMed. Reach the brow of the hill and the RWR goes ape - surrounded by AAA and SAMs. Flak fingers start threading through the sky at me. Oh s**t, I'm still at 400ft AGL - dive quickly.
RWR calms down, 25 seconds to waypoint, 4 targets ahead, nicely spaced. Kill autopilot and rudder round to centre each of the AAAs, firing off 2 more ALARMs. Re-engage autopilot, disarm the ALARMs and arm the cluster bombs. 5 seconds, commit the weapon, 4, 3, more AAAs appear on the RWR, 2, 1, zero, weapons away. Arm ALARMS - 3 left, and two banks of SAM/AAA to fly past on the route home. Toss one at the AAA I'm about to overfly and chaff and jink my way around the others.
Halfway home, and that EWR lights up again on the RWR, almost dead ahead. Just about to launch when a AAA starts up as I crest a hill - slight rudder and fire. Now passed the EWR - air radar shows no bogeys, so I continue for home. Four AAAs appear, only one ALARM left - about to reach the waypoint - which one will I overfly? I hate big decisions! More tracer fire heading my way, chaff chaff chaff, jink about. Waypoint reached - overflying the leftmost one - ALARM away. Tracer hits me - more chaff - up and down - dead AAA. Look right - tracer perilously close. Thud. Chaff chaff chaff, flying away. Tracer stops, RWR eventually clears.
Reach the penultimate waypoint and go up to 1500 feet AGL. 20 seconds to approach point, RWR lights up with an AAA slightly to the right. Flip on the ground radar - too much out there to get any idea where it is and no ALARMs left. Look out the window - no tracer. Must be far away. Reach the approach point, and I haven't got the wings swept forward. Auto-land engages just as I hit sweep-forward. Nose goes heavenward, sharp bank, auto-land cuts out and I start dropping. Thrust forward, flaps down and try to cross the approach radar path again. Can't seem to get it - must be too low - pull up slightly, and a Tornado floats past my nose. Forgotten about those guys! Two more out there...ah, there's the beam.
Auto-land engaged. Where are those other birds? Air-brakes, flaps, landing gear down. 1 mile out, inner beacon sounds, 145 kts - why flying so fast? 4200 lbs of fuel!! 200 feet, disengage autopilot, 60 feet, flare, 61 feet (whoops!), throttle back, nose down a little, rear wheels touch, 140 kts, thrust reversers engaged, switch on FLIR, 80 kts, throttle slam-shut, 60 kts wheel-brakes on, 55 kts thrust reversers off, FLIR shows parked Tornado dead ahead! Wheel-brakes off, rudder right, _just_ miss, wheel brakes back on. 0 kts, ctrl-q.
Mission a success.