Bf110

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Messerschmitt Bf 110C-4

Ac de bf110 c4.jpg
Messerschmitt Bf 110C-4
Specifications
Type Fighter / Bomber
Armament 2 x 20 mm MG-FF Cannon,
4 x 7.92 mm MG-17 Machine Guns,
1 x 7.92 mm MG-15 Machine Gun (tail gunner)
Crew 2 (Pilot, Tail Gunner)
Weight 6,545kg
Top Speed 518km/h

History

The Bf 110 was fast and heavily armed; its true design when proposed was intended to be a heavy escort fighter. While a sound idea at the time, the 110 was, when finally in combat against other modern fighters like Spitfires and Hurricanes… sadly outclassed by 1940 and was in need of fighter escort itself in many cases. Even lighter fighters like the H-75 sold to the French could, through absolute superiority in maneuvering… totally outclass the Bf 110 unless the Zerstorer brought its heavy gun package onto target first and then with very deadly effect remove the threat to itself.

The tightly arranged and heavy gun package was second to none in any fighter of the day however. With a good wing loading for its size and bulk the Bf110 enjoyed a tight turning radius for its class, and could come around hard when racked into a turn provided the pilot did not try to hold that level of turn rate for very long. Ultimately under-powered in a dogfight it was unable to hold its own as the fight grew more intense and desperate.

Game Play

You have to be smart in the Bf 110, and not wade in without a care in the world. A little caution before you commit to the fight will pay you back again and again. It is a great fighter plane to learn wingman tactics with a friend in… and flying with buddies will turn you and your buddies into a very deadly bunch if you stick together and don't fly stupid.

You don't have a great climb rate and your speed is not up to single seat fighter averages, but you have good visibility and an unbeatable guns package mounted in the nose with lots of ammunition and no convergence issues to worry about. Your evil firepower is one of the scariest things your opponents will experience throughout a campaign and they will go after you without mercy as a result.

The Bf 110C-4 can manage hit and run attacks very well, and players who learn the art of "Boom and Zoom" tactics as well as flying in pairs with a wingman will rule the sky early in any campaign with the Bf 110C-4. When the Bf 110 hits something, that thing dies. If you can bring the guns onto target they will knock down anything.

Stay fast and use teamwork and surprise to be effective in the “piggy.” If you find yourself switching to the tail gunner to defend yourself you are all but cooked, and it has been said that a 110 jockey in the tail-gunners position is a 110 jockey with a donkey for a horse.

With a pretty tight turning circle for its size and a very good Instantaneous Turn Rate (ITR) an aggressive pilot can bring the nose around into attack and almost use sheer shock as effectively as his heavy guns package. No Allied pilot ever wants to see the nose of the 110 pointing at them, and if you can make them believe that this view is immediately imminent, some will even panic right there. All you need is an enemy in your sights for one or two seconds and it's all over but for the burning and the screaming.

Messerschmitt Bf 110F-B

Ac de bf110 c4-b.jpg
Messerschmitt Bf 110F-B
Specifications
Type Fighter / Bomber "JaBo"
Armament 2 x 20mm MG151/20 Cannon,
4 x 7.92 mm MG17 Machine Guns,
1 x 7.92 mm MG15 Machine Gun (tail gunner),
2 x 250 kg bombs
Crew 2 (Pilot, Tail Gunner)
Weight 6,755kg
Top Speed 560km/h
Armored Glass Windscreen Yes
Pilot Armor (back/head) Yes/Yes

History

After the apparent failure of the Zerstorer concept to dominate the skies over France/England such as the first experiences in Spain indicated they might, other roles were to be found for this workhorse of the Luftwaffe. So much faith had been placed in this airframe and the entire Zerstorer concept by the Luftwaffe leadership that little would change this position before it was too late to not use the Bf110 in any manner that it could be found useful.

Eventually disregarded as an effective fighter but still vital for the Luftwaffe, the Bf 110C-4 was fitted with a bomb rack and 100hp more power, it became the first true fighter/bomber in history as the experimental Bf 110C-4/b "Jabo" Zerstorer ("Jabo" is an abbreviation for "JAeger-BOmber", "Hunter-Bomber" in German). While doing slightly better at this task than previously as a “heavy” fighter for bomber escort, it proved it was up to new mission profiles away from escort duties.

With its new fighter bomber role showing to be a promising development, plus needing to make use of existing units in the face of no good alternative in this role, the Bf 110 series enjoyed further improvements in engine power and in just one varient, the much more powerful MG151/20 20mm cannons. This gave the Zerstorer even sharper teeth and created a new model, the Bf 110F-B ... the fastest of all the Bf 110's and the one that the combat pilots liked the best.

Game Play

A lot of Battleground Europe players that fly this plane are already flying low for ground attack purposes and employing the effective bombs they have at their disposal. After dropping the bombs using the gun package in the nose for strafing attacks can be quite devastating.

Use the F-B as a support bomber against mechanized infantry, enemy gun positions and light tanks. The 250kg bombs can hurt just about any Allied tank as well as make a real dent in enemy defended positions where infantry, AT and AA guns may be holding up the advance of your own ground forces.

The fire power of two of the best cannons in game in a tight centerline package with four 7.92mm MG's make it arguably the best heavy hitting Luftwaffe fighter in the game, and while in terms of air combat it is not greatly different to the earlier Bf 110C-4, it does have the advantage of it's higher top speed, which is a healthy 42km/h increase over the earlier version. The added engine power is partly negated with extra weight of added armor (including wind screen armor), so you have only a small gain in climb rate where extra weight is always going to hurt. If you’re fighting enemy interceptors sent to down you, or even enemy fighter bombers you meet along the front, you’ll have to employ much the same if not identical an approach as you learned early in the campaign while flying the previous non-bomber version of the Bf 110, the "Zerstorer". It is highly recommended to have some wingmen nearby. this of course is good advice at any time in combat.

Take a friend along as your tail gunner when you are in a support role to help keep your tail clear and add some insult to injury as you pull off a bomb or strafing run. Unlike the previous non ground attack version, which has no genuine compelling reason to be flying around 50 feet off the deck like this bomber version does, having a tail gunner along might just save your bacon, but tail-gunning is about as hard a deflection shooting exercise as you could find anywhere.


Air Units in Battleground Europe
Aircraft
Bf 109E-1 | Bf 109E-4 | Bf 109F-4 | Bf 109G-6/U4 | Bf 110C-4 | Bf 110C-4/B | Blenheim IF | Blenheim IV | C47 'Skytrain' | Dewoitine D.520 | Douglas DB-7 | Fw 190A-4 | Havoc Mk.I | Hawk 75 | Hawk 81 | Hawk 87 | Heinkel 111 | Hurricane Mk I | Hurricane Mk IIb | Hurricane Mk IIc | Junkers 52 | Junkers 87 'Stuka' | P-38 'Lightning' | P-39 | Spitfire Mk Ia | Spitfire Mk Ib | Spitfire Mk Vb | Spitfire Mk IXc