Entry into missions can be done via one of three options (providing the mission isn’t already airborne when you join). You can elect to do a full engine start (a lengthy and detailed process which some find interesting), start from the taxi position with your engine running, or start directly on the runway ready to throw the throttle forward. Once again, these features offer “scalability” that is designed to suit each individual’s realism and available time constraints.
Our first look at an in-game shot demonstrates a few things. First is the clean, crisp lines of the F-16 and the other is the background fogging effect. This is fog set at 100% up to 10,000′, basically resulting in IFR conditions below that altitude.
Down low, care must be taken in the fog to avoid running into building, terrain, or the enemy! Down here your terrain following radar will be your friend!
The heart of F4 has always been, and with F4:AF, continues to be, the campaign engine. No sim has ever waged such a huge war, on such a huge scale, with so much independent action going on regardless of the user’s participation. Truly, if you decided not to fly and just watch how the war plays out, you could, and it is very interesting. Most people like to fly and fight though, and in that case, while the war rages around you, the actions you take will directly affect the outcome.
Whether you choose to fight in Korea or the Balkans, you can have as little or as much control over the war as you desire. You may not particularly want to get involved in the minutia of managing the theatre-wide war, and that’s fine. But for the folks that really enjoy playing real-time strategy games however, manipulating flights, strike areas and mission types, you can do all of that, and be your own MacArthur.