I’ve had a chance over the weekend to put some more time into the Battle of Moscow campaign with my continued focus on unlocking the I-16 and IL-2 aircraft before I move on to other types. The focus is really helping me master the aircraft instead of being a jack of all trades. It’s turned my general disdain for the I-16 into a bit of a love affair as I’m having a lot of fun with the flat nosed fighter.
Flying the I-16 makes you feel a generation behind in terms of aircraft performance and yet the Type 24 has just enough engine power to keep up with the more sophisticated Bf109s. It helps that the AI is drawn into low altitude turn battles at times (although not always) and that makes life a little bit easier. The I-16s roll rate is also very helpful in making rapid direction changes that the Bf109s sometimes cannot follow. Any rolling evasive maneuver is likely to go very badly for them.
With the IL-2 I’ve been conducting the usual Ground Attack and Ground Support missions. I enjoy the Ground Support missions more for their target richness but this mission type lacks variety – Usually there is a line of friendly artillery squared off against enemy armor and artillery. The variety is more what you encounter in the air. I’ve had no escort and been confronted by a pair of easily dispatched Bf109F-2s and I’ve also seen a couple of epic fights with my IL-2 flight plus a flight of escorts get tangled up with Bf110s with Bf109 escorts ending in an epic all out fight. Level bombers crossed above during the fight too so it was spectacular.
I’ve just started on episode three of the campaign and I’m now into the winter weather. The Moscow map continues to impress (subject of a future blog post!).