View Full Version : Best way to get started?

10-07-2004, 07:17 PM
I saw a review for IL2 on GameSpot and thought I'd give it a try.

I purchased the Forgotten Battles Gold Pack today and installed it. I'm getting the 2.01 and 2.04 patches right now.

Did I miss out on anything by not getting the original IL2 game?

Also, I'm wondering what the best way is to get started. I'm not doing well getting into the game. I started a dynamic campaign and I try to follow my flight group, but it isn't clear to me what I'm supposed to do at each point on the map. For instance, the first attack point I came to had a bomb icon, but I didn't see anything at all to attack.

What's a good way to familiarize myself with the game to get the hang of it? And what are the more popular User Defined's to set?

Thanks for any insight.

10-07-2004, 07:29 PM
Hope that you have a joystick. Need that for sure.

I think that most would agree that you aren't missing anything by bypassing the original game as long as your machine is up to the task. FB has more planes, more maps, and most importantly, when you are ready to go and fly online, more people to mix it up with.

I'll aniticipate some responses by others by saying PRACTICE PRACTICE PRACTICE.

People will always disagree on settings, but I would start by going with everything on EXCEPT use Unlimited Ammo, keep Icons On, keep the Mini Map and Map Path on, and Speedbar On, Cockpit Unlocked.

This means that you'll have to deal with stalls and spins, limited fuel, real takeoffs and landings, overheating and such. BUT you'll be able to practice gunnery to your heart's content.

I'd ALLOW for cockpit off as a beginner just to help out in learning gunnery. If you are like most people, you'll gravitate to cockpit on since it looks great and is a bit more challenging.

Save your tracks and watch them.

Uh,,what am I forgetting...?

TgD Thunderbolt56
10-07-2004, 07:43 PM
As Nick said, you're really not missing much by skipping the original IL2 (other than 2 years of great flight simming joy...oh well, water under the bridge).

FB can be hardware intensive so make sure you rig is up to the task (most important are 2.4 P4 or equivalent as a minimum, 1 gig ram, and a decent video card. Preferably something in the 9800 pro/ fx5900 class or later)

Lastly, controllers. A decent joystick will suffice but most will tell you something more will exponentially increase your immersion and, by proxy, enjoyment. A la CH hotas, Saitek X45, Thrustmaster Cougar.

10-07-2004, 07:56 PM
Thanks for the suggestions so far.

I have an Athlon 2600 and a GeForce3. My system has 512MB of RAM.

The things I'm tripping on first off are not having a clear view of the planes in front of me when taking off (I've crashed a few times on the runway until I figured out how to get an outside view so that I know when the planes in front of me are out of the way), and not being clear on which weapon key drops what (guns, cannons, bombs, torpedoes, etc.)

For now I just have a plain old flightstick with two buttons.

I also notice that if I'm rough on the planes, they tend to, uh, spin out of control after a few jags. I'm an X-Wing vet so I never paid much attention to the dangers of turn rate http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_smile.gif

Would playing the dynamic campaign give me enough of a feel for it all, or would the single player missions from IL2 give me a more composed introduction?

10-07-2004, 08:10 PM
there are some great campaigns at mudmovers/airwarfare and netwings.
theres a esential thread with links for em.

id say try out the j8a and i16 first http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-happy.gif
oh and the yak9m with 37mm cannon, set that too 100m convergance.... its great when u hit, trust me http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-happy.gif

10-07-2004, 08:38 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Properella:
The things I'm tripping on first off are not having a clear view of the planes in front of me when taking off (I've crashed a few times on the runway until I figured out how to get an outside view so that I know when the planes in front of me are out of the way) <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>
One little trick is to spin your plane a little to one side. Hold the wheel brakes and the rudder (to one side) and quickly accelerate to full and straight back down to zero again. You can now see the forward planes just out to the side.

<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>For now I just have a plain old flightstick with two buttons. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>
So many can make do with very little. You just may be one of those guys. http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-wink.gif You don't need anything too fancy, but a good suggestion is to have one with a hat, a throttle axis and at least half a dozen buttons. That may also solve your problem on which key fires which weapon (a trip into your input options will solve that too).

Other people could probably give you better advice on the rest. My only suggestion is to make good use of the Quick Mission Builder for much of your practice. Set all the difficulty options on easy and slowly change back each option to realistic as you feel comfortable with (although I suggest you start with realistic gunnery from the start).

10-07-2004, 09:20 PM

I suggest you fly somthing like a Yak 3P for now, untill u get the hang of the game, and get use to turning and burning, and learn how to exchange alt for energy..and how to keep ur speed up and figure out how to work flaps, and pitch and everything else that combines into a dogfight... every lil adjustment u make can kill you or help you...but really dont worry about prop pitch, radatiors, trim, superchargers and the other lil things first, jus concentrate on your aiming, and ur ability to keep energy up..energy is the #1 key to sucess in this game.. no matter the plane...

when it comes to turning, ease into the turn, then start making it sharper... jus dont turn so long where u lose all of your energy, and stall out... the Yak 3P is very forgving...hard to stall...

10-07-2004, 09:50 PM
Take your time.
Try the wonder view (no cockpit) and learn to watch the instruments.
I see you are low on ram and alittle slack on your VC.
So keep things simple.
You have to have a stick. Try a X-45 sataik.
Not the best, but simple and will get you away from the key board and easy to setup.
This is not an easy game for there is always something new to learn.
Keep asking stubid questions,
Also helps to stay with one plane for awhile. Once you have covered the setup of one plane moving to the next will not be so hard.
Pratice alot.
Happy flying.

10-07-2004, 10:35 PM
Hey Prop,

Welcome aboard!

ONe of the rigs I run FB on is an AMD athlon 1333Mhz, with a GF3ti500, and it does a great job. You would see a very noticable improvement if you installed another 512mb of ram. Then make sure the AGP aperature in your BIOS us set higher than default. Most mother boards default is 64mb. I always set mine to at least 256mb or more if the Bios will let me. This makes a big difference over the default setting.

After that you should just get interested in the sim and do whatever is fun for you. As you go along and learn you will try new things out in it. IF you tell us what kind of stick you have I am sure someone here will have one and let you know how they set it up. S!


10-08-2004, 07:20 AM
I've been trying the 'patrolling for bombers' mission with the P47. Very interesting. Especially when the spotlights decide to converge on the bombers http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_smile.gif

I wish the single mission descriptions were more... descriptive.

Also, it takes a LONG time to get any action going, so mostly I just set it on Autopilot and set Time x8 and turn it off when I see targets.

10-08-2004, 07:47 AM
IF you can find one on e-bay or order one directly from Microsoft, get yourself a MIcrosoft Sidewinder Precision 2 stick. Best one ever made.


10-08-2004, 09:36 AM
Thanks again for the feedback, all.

Another question, in case anyone sees it...

On the P-47 single mission #1 where I am to attack a ship convoy, the outside view shows my plane having a torpedo or bomb on the underside. Yet, when I hit Backspace, Enter or Space, it doesn't drop.

Is this a bomb or just an extra fuel tank? Or am I doing something else wrong?

10-08-2004, 10:10 AM
Are you sure that that keystroke is mapped to the ordnance drop function? It is possible that it got inadvertantly reassigned. Check your controls setup and see.

I had many of the same questions you did when I first started playing the game. As I've gotten more and more into it, I've refined my controls setup by buying a MS FFB2 joystick (you can really get a good feel for the onset of stall with force feedback), a Saitek X45 thruster w/ rudder for my left hand, TrackIR3 for presision panning, a good headset with microphone for TeamSpeak communications (the in-game voice comms are crappy IMHO).

I've also found that as your requirement become more advanced, you naturally tend to set up your keystroke assignements to what works for you. When I began it was like "hmm, view zoom in and out - that would be nice!" Now I've got everything under the sun assigned, including incremental view zooming, propeller pitch adjustment, bombsiight setup (for those fun He111 bombing missions), etc. And one advantage of having a programmable joystick is that you have the ability to set up comonly used functions right there at your fingertips.

But my advice: just fly and enjoy, see what your needs are, and just take it at your own pace. This is supposed to be fun!

10-08-2004, 10:22 AM
hi and welcolm
see this thread for some advice on setting up controls for weapons


10-08-2004, 10:29 AM
pick a plane, one that you like for whatever reason, be it patriotic, read about or whatever. then pick a dynamic campaign that has your plane and fly , fly , fly http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif

dont expect a kill or a successfull bombing run on every mission. it is like it wont happen everytime. just go with the flow. if you dont see what you are supposed to bomb just drop your load onto the next best target and engage the enemy fighters.

goggle for "newview +il2" newview is a little program that allows you to put mouseview on your joyssticks hatswitch. best thing i have ever done in terms of immersion.

have fun and check six http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_smile.gif

10-08-2004, 10:45 AM
ease up on your joystick settings...
try something close to this but get rid of the 100 across the board for you input settings.

0 5 12 18 26 36 48 59 78 100

10-08-2004, 10:52 AM
Ah, I found the Alt+Space option. That one worked.

Now all I have to do is know when the right time is to drop a bomb, and not be close enough to get caught in the blast, and not get shot down.


10-08-2004, 11:05 AM
also see these for good advice

10-08-2004, 11:37 AM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Properella:
Ah, I found the Alt+Space option. That one worked.

Now all I have to do is know when the right time is to drop a bomb, and not be close enough to get caught in the blast, and not get shot down.


Dart just made some good training films regarding air-to-ground attack. See this thread http://www.simhq.com/simhq3/sims/boards/bbs/ultimatebb.php?ubb=get_topic;f=98;t=012794 for information on where to download them.

To make sure you don't blow your own plane to smithereens when dropping ordinance, set your bomb delay to at least 2 seconds.

Also, I forgot to address one of your earlier points about not being able to get visual on ground based objects. First, you can use the Padlock function (if it is enabled in either your difficulty settings, or on the server if you're playing online) to get a good bead on where the nearest ground based bad guy is. I think the default keystroke is F5. Make certain you don't keep it enabled all the time though, or you'll fly right into the ground! Second, use the zoom view (Delete key) to zoom in and more detail on the ground will become visible (at the price of a greatly reduced peripheral view). His Page Down to go to full zoom out view (this is where I fly most of the time), and End to go back to normal zoom level.

For air to ground (JaBo) missions, I use Padlock to get a rough indication of where the ground objects are, then zoom in full and use my TrackIR to keep my eyes on it, then attack.

10-08-2004, 03:10 PM
I managed to survive the first ground attack mission in the campaign. If I wouldn't have followed the flight leader, I would have never have found the targets. Don't know how he knew where to find them, since they were so far away from the target icon on the map. Anyway...

The second mission sets me against some enemy fighters. I managed to take one out but then crashed. Playing the track later, it turns out I clipped him and lost my right wing. Whoops.

Anyway... I'm flying the I-16's right now, and my 'G' key doesn't raise the gear on them, so I have to engage Autopilot so they will raise. I also wish the tracks had a fast forward and rewind on them so I could review my mistakes without having to watch the whole thing.

10-08-2004, 03:14 PM
Welcome aboard Properella.... your mothers name wouldnt be Barberella would it.. I knew a Barberella once...... Barberella Psychedella..... http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-tongue.gif

Seriously.... Welcome aboard.... hit the Sturmovik Essentials link in my sig. It has a lot of good stuff in there. Practice is what I suggest. Also When you practice use unlimmited ammo till you can get the hang of how the guns function. As quickly as you can as soon as you are comfortable turn off the unlimmitted ammo and start to limit it so you can gert a feel for the ammo loads. After that only use unlimmited ammo for target practice and even then shoot like you have limitted ammo. Use full flight model and engine management settings. When you practice air to air give your self better odds and go against rookie AI but NEVER use friendlies for targets.. they wont try to evade you and you can pick up some bad habits. For air to ground practice simply set up any dogfight sever off line and then go in there..pick the plane of your choice.. load it up with ordinance and try to take out all the enemy ground targets.... it is very challenging but the ability to respwn comes in handy. This way you can also practice taking off and landing too. When you run out of ammo land respawn and do it again. Pick a two ar,y DF map. It is a lot to learn and it has a steep learning curve but the fun factor is through the roof.

10-08-2004, 03:15 PM
I-16 is one of a very small number of aircraft that have a manual crankshaft for raising the landing gear (most by 1940 had automatic).

You need to set keys for manual gear raising. Be prepared to press it alot till it goes up.

10-08-2004, 03:26 PM
Ah, thank you, I missed that detail.

Is there a way to have control over the track playback?

10-08-2004, 05:37 PM
Sadly there is no way to control the track playback. Of yourse you can fast forward and slow it down with the [ and ] keys, but there is no rewind and no way to jump to a specific point of the mission.

10-08-2004, 05:38 PM
Okay, I figured out how to activate time compression in the tracks. I guess that will do for now.

I tried realism with the takeoff, punching the throttle and veering off to the side, but my wing clipped on the next pilot's tail, my front turned from the momentum, and my propeller proceeded to chop his plane up until we both exploded. Whoops.

I wish F4 would only target enemies - it's hard to ID planes when they are so far away, but I'm getting the hang of it.

The load lag in dogfights is getting really annoying. When a plane is getting just close enough for me to shoot or some new message is coming across, the hard drive crunches and I lose my bearings. Will 1G RAM help with that?

Also, is it only possible to advance in a campaign by either landing or surviving a crash? I ended a campaign mission once when the leader said 'mission complete' without landing and I didn't get the 'Apply' option, and it wouldn't let me re-enter the mission, so I had to fly it again.

10-08-2004, 07:13 PM
first off .. to ID the planes maybe you should fly with map icons on and flightpath. those are difficulty settings that you can adjust before you embark on a new campaign.
it will help younavigate around the map.
to open the map press M in case you didnt know.
there is also a settings relating to what needs to be done to finish a mission. usually once mission accomplished flashes in the middle of the screen it is save to hit esc and quit.

1gb of ram is always a bonus http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_smile.gif until then .,. consider giving your hard drives a defrag.
if you are getting lag offline consider lowering your video settings. il2 looks great across the board. be that on excellent, perfect or high.

10-08-2004, 07:49 PM
I just recently discovered the difference between the leader saying mission complete and the game giving me the MISSION COMPLETE message. I know when it's safe to quit the mission now.

It would be nice if I could restart a mission without having to quit it first. Those menues take a while to load.

I'll try reducing my video settings and see if it helps the lag. Thanks.

10-08-2004, 09:36 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Properella:

It would be nice if I could restart a mission without having to quit it first. Those menues take a while to load.

I'll try reducing my video settings and see if it helps the lag. Thanks. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

You may want to post your system in community help.
Maybe can help you on that lag.

10-09-2004, 04:14 PM
Thanks once again for all of the feedback.

I woke up this morning in great pain because my joystick is in a bad place on the desk and I played with a bad posture - I was almost unable to roll out of bed! I'll be taking a break from it for a bit just to play it safe.

As far as feedback about the game is concerned, I like the realism a lot. I just wish the game gave me a better introduction into it, and that the menues and music were a little more welcoming, intuitive and composed. Practice missions that don't require you to experience the "half hour of boredom, 5 minutes of terror" paradigm would also have been nice.

We'll see what they do for Pacific Fighters. My guess is they won't do much because IL2 seemed pretty popular without all the nice bells and whistles.

10-11-2004, 09:56 AM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Properella:
I just recently discovered the difference between the leader saying mission complete and the game giving me the MISSION COMPLETE message. I know when it's safe to quit the mission now.


What exactly is the difference, anyway?

10-11-2004, 12:47 PM
If you end the mission when the leader says mission complete, you don't get credit for it and you have to fly it again.

If you get the MISSION COMPLETE message and end the mission, it allows you to advance.