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beachav8r

Rolling Thunder (A) - Mission 06

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[size:9pt]Note - In an effort to continuously improve the sim, starting with this AAR I've also enabled SweetFX, which basically does post-process work in realtime through DirectX (PFM if you ask me). This allows you to change HDR settings, colors, saturation, and add various effects that you see in realtime while playing the sim. A fantastic tool that can be used in all kinds of sims. More Strike Fighters 2 specific SweetFX details found HERE![/size]

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06NAM00.jpg

Today's mission is to strike the enemy PT boat base at Loc Chau. At first I get excited thinking it was the PT boat base I had spotted on a previous mission, but I soon realize it is not the same (that one was on the coast, this one is on a river). Our pair of A-6As is tasked to take out the barracks buildings in a coordinated strike with other assets. The sense of being involved in a true "Alpha Strike" in this sim is very good.

06NAM01.jpg

With a gleam in my eye, I hatch a little plan. So far in this campaign I've been a pretty good sailor, sticking to the script and the mantra of "one pass - haul ass". BUT, I'm pretty sure this target is going to be pretty juicy, so I plan for that eventuality. My target is the barracks building, so I equip myself with six 1,000 lb. bombs which should do the trick. I also equip my wingman with four 1,000 lb. bombs as a backup. I knock my fuel load down to 75% and decide to load up on Snakeyes for targets of opportunity. With fourteen of the 500 lb. retarded bombs loaded I'm a flying bomb truck!

06NAM02.jpg

There is a high overcast at around sixteen thousand feet today, giving us a little bit of room to get some altitude for the initial bomb drop.

06NAM03.jpg

Ahead of us, the Phantoms get to work on the MiGs that are converging over the target area...

06NAM04.jpg

Alpha strike inbound!

06NAM05.jpg

As we climb toward the coast I configure my bombs for release...

06NAM06.jpg

06NAM07.jpg

We press toward the IP and I see some shapes go scooting down the right side of the aircraft. Fortunately the CAP flight is on top of things but the action gets uncomfortably close as black smoke puffs and trails mark the demise of MiGs and Crusaders...

06NAM08.jpg

I offset the target area slightly to allow me to keep it in view out the front corner of the canopy. I've found this to be a good technique for keeping the target in sight while planning the pop-up and roll in maneuver. Of course, as we cross the coast every gun in North Vietnam opens up on us. To increase the odds of a successful mission I give my wingman the weapons free command.

06NAM09.jpg

To my surprise, he must take a more direct line to the target and as I'm finishing my roll in I can see his bombs starting to ripple across the site. Wow!

06NAM10.jpg

Other explosions are hitting the site, so there must have been another flight tasked with other portions of the facility...

06NAM11.jpg

06NAM12.jpg

My DIANE reticle crosses the target and I press and hold the pickle button. It always seems to take an eternity for all the bombs to ripple off. The exploding flak illuminates the bottom of my aircraft...

06NAM13.jpg

As tracers zoom behind me, I pull off hard to the left (south) fleeing toward the coast...

06NAM14.jpg

As I climb away my bombs hit the southern shoreline...

06NAM15.jpg

I have no idea if I've hit my target, but it looks pretty good!

06NAM16.jpg

The smoke from multiple strikes is extremely heavy, so it is impossible to see much down there, but I can see a few PT boats moored in the river and tied up to the docks...

06NAM17.jpg

I proceed offshore and perform a split-S to drop down to low altitude for the follow up (unauthorized) strike..

06NAM18.jpg

I setup for a low altitude, jinking flight down the river and zoom in on my HUD to see if I can spot the boats..

06NAM19.jpg

06NAM20.jpg

06NAM21.jpg

We are so low I think I can hear the guns firing at me. The flak is tremendous as the whole compound fires wildly into the air. I try to steady for a couple seconds and jab the pickle button...

06NAM22.jpg

Whoosh! The explosions rip down the river...

06NAM23.jpg

An enormous pull to the left blacks me out momentarily...

06NAM24.jpg

I roll out heading for the beach and take a glance toward the site..all flames and smoke..

06NAM25.jpg

06NAM26.jpg

I query the TAC for a mission status and she reports the mission is indeed a success. I check in on my wingman and he is intact. I'm using a modified FORMATIONS.INI, but for some reason my selection #9 (RETURN TO BASE) does not seem to work. I had wanted to send him home prior to my second pass to make sure he stayed out of trouble. Fortunately, he was resetting out to the east anyway and wasn't even close to me on my second run. I need to look into why the RTB command isn't working...

06NAM27.jpg

We cross offshore and my radar picks up the fleet about 50 miles offshore...

06NAM28.jpg

While I'm on the wing-leveler autopilot I watch some more action with the F12 view. This cool little rapid firing gun is gonna get extra rice tonight for taking down this A-4..!

06NAM29.jpg

Soon we are passing over carriers. I keep checking for numbers to make sure I get the right one.. There is the Oriskany - <S>..she is now an artificial reef off of Florida if memory serves me correctly..

06NAM30.jpg

Finally I see my carrier, the Independence, conveniently steaming west alongside the Coral Sea...

06NAM31.jpg

As I line up for my approach I suddenly notice that I've taken a little damage to my tail feathers! Wow..didn't even know it..! No controllability issues, but scary nonetheless.

06NAM32.jpg

I'm in a perfect groove and as I touchdown I'm actually a bit shocked when I bounce over the wires. Bolter! I jam the throttles forward and milk the aircraft off the angled deck...

06NAM33.jpg

That was embarrassing. I roll around on a circling downwind and get back into the groove once more.. I *think* that distances in the SF world are compressed, so I think the distances to fly to targets and the overall size of the theaters are smaller than real life (I could be wrong about that). So fuel seems like it is never an issue. The sim would be even more immersive if fuel became more critical faster. Both Jane's F-15 and Jane's F-18 were pretty cool about that..fuel was really critical to monitor in those sims..

06NAM34.jpg

We come back in and catch a shallow, crappy one wire due to me not wanting to bolter again...

06NAM36.jpg

06NAM35.jpg

06NAM37.jpg

The mission is a success. Turns out I was wounded on the sortie. At least I didn't kill Morgan!

06NAM38.jpg

06NAM39.jpg

Looks like I was tagged by a pissed off PT boat. Fortunately my "rogue" secondary strike didn't cost us too much. The debrief states I destroyed eleven torpedo boats. That felt good...

06NAM41.jpg

06NAM40.jpg

BeachAV8R
 

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Good read and mission!

On the note of fuel, the Intruder had quite a good leg, so unless you run at a target very far or using only 50% fuel load you will hardly notice it. Give a try outside the campaign for a Mig21 in a turn n burn dogfight, you will run out of juice relatively fast.

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Good stuff BeachAV8R, and the pics are cool! These mission reports remind me of 'Coonts - Flight of The Intruder'......... Excellent!

 

Keep em coming,  NIELS

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That was embarrassing. I roll around on a circling downwind and get back into the groove once more.. I *think* that distances in the SF world are compressed, so I think the distances to fly to targets and the overall size of the theaters are smaller than real life (I could be wrong about that). So fuel seems like it is never an issue. The sim would be even more immersive if fuel became more critical faster. Both Jane's F-15 and Jane's F-18 were pretty cool about that..fuel was really critical to monitor in those sims..

 

 

The maps in sf2 are only 60 or 70% of the real life counterparts.

 

But if the fuel comsuption isn't a problem from carriers, if you fly some missions with the usaf from thailand or South vietnam, it's a different story even with plenty of external fuels tank and reduced bomb loads.

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"WE NEED TANKERS THAT WORK"

 

Hoping, wishing, pleading.................Nothing more frustrating than flaming out after a successful mission!  :please:

 

NIELS  

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Been flying SF2V for the first time recently - I only bought that title to get the Essex boats and Crusaders now I'm hooked on F-105's... really should pick up SF2 so I can get the expansion packs to work... I'm blaming this A-6 series for putting me out of pocket  :P

 

Craig

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The F-105 is my other mistress... I might consider switching to one for one of the other phases of the campaign (B or C or something..)..

 

The only Thirdwire title I haven't picked up thus far is NA. If I found some compelling reason to get it, I would..but I think after Rolling Thunder I'll end up doing some Desert Storm AARs because that is another of my favorite regions.. Would having NA add anything to SF: Europe with the Desert Storm mod? (Like - could I have those carrier task forces in the Gulf..?)

 

BeachAV8R


"WE NEED TANKERS THAT WORK"

 

Hoping, wishing, pleading.................Nothing more frustrating than flaming out after a successful mission!  :please:

 

NIELS  

 

Tankers and multiplayer would really round out this sim nicely.. Kickstarter TK? C'mon..I'll be your PR guy! <g>

 

BeachAV8R


 

But if the fuel comsuption isn't a problem from carriers, if you fly some missions with the usaf from thailand or South vietnam, it's a different story even with plenty of external fuels tank and reduced bomb loads.

 

Good idea.. <files it away in the memory banks..>.. <G>

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Depends on what you want to fly really, the abality to designate and launch on multiple targets with the F-14 makes the plane, tthen theres the water in NA... pretty impressive - seeing as I spend most of my time shipboard thats kind of a big deal for me . From what I understand the battle group formations can be set up in other titles but it takes a bit of fiddling to get them to work, though if you're land based an in anything other than a tomkitty I guess it wont add much to the other titles. If you are a fan of Red Storm Rissing however then NA is a must.

 

Might pick up the RB A-6 as well.. been buying their birds ince they came out witht he CFS2 A-4 though bar the Banshee my entire Razbam collection is MSFS based... can just about justify the cost for the pit.

 

Craig

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SF2V and SF2NA go great together, almost as good as NA and SF2E. My situation is different from the majority, as i can´t use mods properly, but i have all titles, but i would say that playing a campaign in Iceland with an "Underdog" Phantoms in a Tomcat dominated Navy, and running to kill those soviet bombers before Hawkeye calls "Vampyre" is as fun as the game gets.

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Just about caved -  set up a fresh Vietnam instal and loaded up the expansion packs, seems only the most recent update requires SF2 - still using the default A-6 and an A-6E pit... got some kind of goof though - all A-6's have a permanent load of drop tanks...

 

Craig

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two things:

 

1) Beach your AARs are awesome read and presented in fabulous way

 

2) Great advertising for SF2 series on the other site

 

extra 3rd -I need to tune down the bombs smoke and explosions fires for next pack installment

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Thanks Stary - that is a high compliment and I'm glad I can help spread the word about the great work TK did, and that you guys continue to do with the series. The pulse pounding action when you are heading over the beach and the AAA starts to pound around you is comparable to the sims that take 50 switches to get started. I mean, I love the DCS planes because there is a huge feeling of accomplishment in just getting the systems nailed..but Strike Fighters has a great environmental quality to it that really shines.

 

Re: fire and smoke - <G> - I don't know if we need less of it, or if I just need a few more cores and an i7 to take better advantage of it! Was thinking about presenting the next AAR as a Video AAR, but I'll have to post-process it because apparently SweetFX and FRAPS don't work well together. Looking forward to whatever else you guys push down the pipe. After Vietnam (which could take awhile), I'm probably shooting for the Operation Desert Storm campaign.. Looks right down my alley..

 

Thanks again for all the hard work you guys do creating the mods, tweaking them, and setting us moron end users on the right path to getting them all working <g>..

 

BeachAV8R

 

PS - Sure wish TK would show some indications of where the series is heading. It would be really nice to see him get back to PC platform programming. IOS apps...meh...

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as usual, it's only TK who knows what's The Man is up to... mobile games got them Eurofighters, Su-27s etc, in suprisingly high exterior detail.

 

That and lack of anything related to Exp3 makes me sad Panda :sad:

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I proceed offshore and perform a split-S to drop down to low altitude for the follow up (unauthorized) strike..

As a journalist from the french newspaper "L'Humanité", I took pictures of innocent civilians from the people republic of VietNam who were murdered by yankee aircraft deliberatly bombing civilian installation.

Once again, the world must be aware of the crimes committed by the US over a free country

Edited by jeanba

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Hey Beach,

 

Did you just drag and drop the GH3 and GH3.5 files on top of the terrain folders that the SF2V Expansion pack creates?  I tried it and got some tree-sized water buffalo and floating bushes...

Edited by malibu43

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This AAR are just amazing! Please keep em coming! I will also love to see A-A refueling and slewable radar cursors!

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Hey Beach,

 

Did you just drag and drop the GH3 and GH3.5 files on top of the terrain folders that the SF2V Expansion pack creates?  I tried it and got some tree-sized water buffalo and floating bushes...

Malibu

 

GH3 is NOT required for GH 3.5, your description tells me your VietnamSEA_DATA.ini is wrong version, use the one from GH 3.5 pack

 

or TODs are from different (read: Brains32 tiles+GH2-compatible) version of the terrain

Edited by Stary

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Malibu

 

GH3 is NOT required for GH 3.5, your description tells me your VietnamSEA_DATA.ini is wrong version, use the one from GH 3.5 pack

 

or TODs are from different (read: Brains32 tiles+GH2-compatible) version of the terrain

 

Thanks Stary!  I'll give it another try without GH3 first.

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Hey Beach,

 

Did you just drag and drop the GH3 and GH3.5 files on top of the terrain folders that the SF2V Expansion pack creates?  I tried it and got some tree-sized water buffalo and floating bushes...

 

I've got the same error (tree-sized water buffalos) but only in the South Vietnam terrain.

The SF2V Expansion pack has two terrains: North Vietnam (VietnamSEA folder)  and South Vietnam (SouthVietnam folder). I just copied the GH3.5 files into both terrain folders. With the North Vietnam terrain it seams to work but with the South Vietnam terrain it does not. Does anyone know what I've done wrong? Or is GH3.5 not compatible with the South Vietnam terrain?

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no, it's only for the North Vietnam, but you can copy to South Vietnam the VietnamSEA_data.ini from GH 3.5 and rename it to match the name of the south_vietnam_terrain_name _data.ini and overwrite (backup first of course!) -can't tell exact name, away from gaming system

 

I think there are no extra textures introduced in Southern Vietnam terrain so all should be ok

Edited by Stary

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I've got the same error (tree-sized water buffalos) but only in the South Vietnam terrain.

The SF2V Expansion pack has two terrains: North Vietnam (VietnamSEA folder)  and South Vietnam (SouthVietnam folder). I just copied the GH3.5 files into both terrain folders. With the North Vietnam terrain it seams to work but with the South Vietnam terrain it does not. Does anyone know what I've done wrong? Or is GH3.5 not compatible with the South Vietnam terrain?

  

 

Technically, no it's not compatible. There will be some areas where the target areas don't match the terrain tiles they are on. You may end up with some trees showing through buildings and stuff like that. But based on Beach's AARs, the issues look pretty minor.

 

no, it's only for the North Vietnam, but you can copy to South Vietnam the VietnamSEA_data.ini from GH 3.5 and rename it to match the name of the south_vietnam_terrain_name _data.ini and overwrite (backup first of course!) -can't tell exact name, away from gaming system

 

I think there are no extra textures introduced in Southern Vietnam terrain so all should be ok

Duh! That's what I missed! I've clearly been away for too long!

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no, it's only for the North Vietnam, but you can copy to South Vietnam the VietnamSEA_data.ini from GH 3.5 and rename it to match the name of the south_vietnam_terrain_name _data.ini and overwrite (backup first of course!) -can't tell exact name, away from gaming system

 

I think there are no extra textures introduced in Southern Vietnam terrain so all should be ok

 

Thank you! It works. No tree-sized buffalos in south vietnam anymore :-)

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