Ok, I've been mulling over writing up a sort of squadron tactics primer and I suppose this is as good a time to post up a first draft as any. First of, I'm a lawyer in real life so, by rule, everything I write must start with disclaimers. I'm basing a lot of this on experience and as I'm hardly the most experienced pilot in the squadron some of my theories may be incomplete or flat out wrong. If you happen to disagree with me please post your thoughts so we can refine our tactics. Also, this will only apply to pure air-to-air matches. If we're running a combined battle there will be a lot of other considerations that will require different tactics. Finally, it is a long held maxim that no plan survives first contact with the enemy. To that end, we need in flight leaders who can take the basic principles of air-to-air combat and apply then to whatever situation the squadron finds itself in, rather than slavish following a pre-conceived plan. So, without further ado, here is what I think we should be doing. 1) Obtain the energy advantage. All other things being equal, the fighter with more energy will win. Therefore, we should always seek to obtain more energy than our opponent. Because War Thunder will generally ensure that we are flying against fighter of roughly similar performance, this means we should always seek to be higher than our opponent period. If we can do this, then everything else is gravy. 2) Retain the energy advantage. I know everyone wants to make that little plane in their crosshairs go boom no matter what, but if you chase him to the deck then his five friends at 10,000 feet are going to make your life very short, very quickly. To prevent your untimely demise, never dive below the highest enemy fighter and remember the cardinal rule of boom-and-zoom fighting: One pass, haul ass. 3) Bracket Attacks. Ok, boom and zoom tactics are all well and good but what do we do when we do not have the energy advantage over our opponent? This is where the bracket attack and the various other team tactics come in to play and why wingmen are so important. I find this a bit hard to explain without illustrations so I would highly recommend that you go to Nraged's post (appropriately) entitled "Must Read" and look at chapter 18 of the enclosed link. What you will find is a variety of ways that two fighters can team up to create easy, high percentage shots at an opponent with minimal risk to themselves. It is my opinion that mastering this aspect of air-to-air combat is what we need to do to take our tactics to the next level. 4) Frustrate your opponent. So, various bad things have happened and you now have a bandit high on your six. Should you just roll over and die or is there something you can do to win? The basic thing to remember here is that your opponent has an absolute advantage and he will win if he does not make a mistake. Therefore, your primary goal should be to force him to make said mistake. There are a few ways to go about this. Descending can potentially draw your opponent down below friendly fighters and as you fly lower the ground will limit his dive angles and shorten the window in which he can shoot at your before he has to pull up. Finally, the simple act of repeatedly evading an enemy's attacks is likely to frustrate him and frustrated pilots are much more likely to make mistakes. Ok, I think 600+ words is more than enough for Monday morning, but like I said, if you have any of your own thoughs or observations post them up so I can make corrections or additions.