Tactical Operations Briefing: TOD 5 Mission 15
Destroy the Juvaini
Your main problem is that there's one of you and lots of them, when it comes to the Imps; while you're chasing down one, his buddies are harassing your B-wings. What they try and do is force the B to take evasive action, dropping it out of formation. This prevents the B-wing from locking onto the Juviani with its proton torpedoes from the usual safe distance. In addition, it forces you to choose which of the B-wings you will have to cover.
The easiest and most effective way to cover your B-wings, therefore, is interdiction- the A-wing's specialty. First, set your targeting computer to each of the three B-wings. Cycle through the target IDs (T key) until B-wing Blue 1 is displayed. Hit Shift-F5 to lock that into memory. Hit T, then Shift-F6, and T, then Shift-F7 for Blue 2 and 3.
At any point thereafter, you can hit F5, F6, or F7 to check on the status of a particular B-wing. Centering them in your targeting sights will, of course, cause you to fly towards them. To help them out, of course."
With the B-wings in your computer, charge your shields from your lasers (hit ; seven times) and then switch your ELS settings to 0/50, preserving your shield charge and ignoring your lasers. Throttle up to full (backspace). You'll take off at an impressive 150 MGLT, and leave the B-wings in the dust."
Hit 'R', to bring up the closest opponent to you; this will be either Ties Alpha 1 or 2, or Ties Beta 1 or 2. If you get Alpha, hit 'T' once or twice to cycle through to Beta. Then hit Control-A to send your wingman after Beta flight. Hit 'Y' to cycle back to Alpha, which should be about five klicks out. Center your targeting on them and wait."
At about 1.5 klicks, hit 'F9' three times, putting your lasers at minimum charge, and 'X' to link your fire. The Ties should be right in your crosshairs right about now, and firing. Slew to the side- I generally pass on the right. Your speed will slow to about 105, but at this point you'll have enough leftover speed to easily drop in behind the first Tie and go to it.
Now, some of you may believe that filling the air full of proton charge is the best way to take down an Imp; but in this situation, you'll have at best six consecutive shots before your guns are discharged. Wait for the shot; at 105 MGLT, you can sit on the Tie's tail all day. You aren't in a terrible hurry either; the other Tie won't be able to keep up if you stay on the first's tail.
Keep an eye on the status of your wingman. If he kills the one Beta Tie, cycle through the target list and tell him to attack the other Beta Tie. The Alphas are yours. Why?
Hull Dmg is the Alliance Pilot's Way of telling the Imps to go home.
Alpha flight, if destroyed, causes the Juviani to launch a fresh flight of 2. However, if you drop them to 'Hull Dmg' status, they'll turn tail and hide behind the Frigate. Your objective, thusly, is to tag them, but not kill them. One to three hits should do it.
Beta flight, however, is run by Brave But Stupid Imps. They'll stay on your B-wings until you destroy them; you'll need to destroy three full sets of two Beta flights before the Juviani stops launching them.
By the time you tag both Alphas, you should find that the B-wings and Beta flight are locking horns, along with your wingman. Help them out.
It's about this point, however, that the FRG launches its two flights of two T/Is; Delta and Gamma flights. Delta flight is similar to Alpha flight; hull damage them and they'll bail. Gamma flight must be destroyed, a number of times; I believe there are also three sets of two.
Concentrate your attacks on the T/Is; they are by far the more dangerous of the two fighters for the B-wings. Make sure your wingman always has one of the Betas or Gammas to shoot at; if he takes down the last damaged Delta or Alpha Tie, you'll end up with a fresh batch.
Once the GUNS show up; send your wingman after Tau 1. It'll keep him busy.
Ignore the CRVs that show up; they fire relatively slow, and aren't much of a threat to anything, save for being something you have to avoid crashing into.
If you have problems sticking with the T/I's, switch your laser charge to 50/50 (120 MGLT) and conserve your shots, switching to 75/50 when necessary.
Most of this mission is being aware of what you should and should not kill. If you find your missile lock indicator flashing, it means that the GUNS have joined the party. This is where I tend to lose one or more of my B-wings, but life isn't exactly fair. Switch to ELS to 100/100 (60 MGLT) and kill at least one of the GUNs to keep him from depositing missiles on your six. 'R' may not work at this point if you have any Alpha or Delta units floating around, and you should.
If you kill both GUNs, another pair will show up at about seven klicks out. Search for the new flight of B-wings and hightail it out there (0/50 again) because the latest batch of Gammas and Betas will be trying to have them for lunch.
I've flown this mission several times now; the Juviani gets turned into scrap metal unless someone crashes into me. I've even had part of my first batch of B-wings survive long enough to hyper out. This strategy ought to do the trick.
To sum up: The best defense is a good offense. Use the A-wing's speed to bring the fight to them.
'Don't kill the Alpha and Delta flights.'