AMMUNITION Needless to say, in real life planes flew with a limited supply of ammunition. Whether it was a matter of weight or storage capacity, the crews could only pack so much destruction onto one aircraft. If the pilot was profligate with his guns, he’d soon find himself at a disadvantage in a dogfight – no bullets. Note also that the planes of the 1940s did not have automatic ammunition counters – pilots had to estimate how many seconds of fire they had left. If you choose to carry Limited Ammo, you’ll have to take care that your machine guns and cannon do not run out of bullets. If not, the only detriment to firing will be that you are announcing your position to those enemies who haven’t spotted you yet.
FATAL CRASHES Until you get some practice under your belt, it’s surprisingly easy to crash into things (especially after you’ve been shot up a little). Generally speaking, your aircraft tends to break into little pieces when you do this, and no matter how spectacular the explosion is, none of those pieces really flies very far. If you decide that Crashes Are Fatal, running into something solid (the ocean, for example) will be the end of your plane. If not, you will happily bounce off mountains, ships, the ground, et al. Of course, if your plane is damaged already, you might not bounce too high.
Before you take off, there’s something you should know. It is possible to “save” a mission in mid-flight and return to it later. This is not an historically accurate feature. Sooner or later, a situation similar to this arises: you’ve been flying for 45 minutes (real time) and are in the middle of a great battle; you’ve broken out of the pack and are just coming around for another run into the thick of things; out of the blue, some sort of emergency rears it’s ugly head (outside of the game, that is) – something catches fire, somebody’s choking to death, there’s an earthquake, you run out of coffee, or whatever; you can’t ignore it, but you really hate to lose all your progress on the mission. What can you do? Well, obviously, you have to quit the mission. (Those of you who seriously considered ignoring the fire or the choking person might think about seeking professional help.) If you take advantage of the opportunity to save the Flight Film (please refer to Unloading the Black Box: Flight Filmsfor instructions), you will be able to pick up later where you left off. It’s a slightly cumbersome process, but it’s effective. After you’ve dealt with the emergency and can return to the game, select Flight Films from the main menu. It will take some time, but you can run the film through to the end, then restart the action and finish the mission. (Please refer to the Flight Films section for more detailed instructions.) Note that you can not do this with a career mission.