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A-143 Buzzard's HE rounds ineffective in air to air engagements
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The HE cannon round fired by the A-143 Buzzard functions quite well for a CAS role, but is quite ineffective in air to air combat. The cannon's rate of fire is too low to hit aircraft that are moving in any direction other than from directly behind. The current slow rate of fire means lots of luck and very high precision is required to hit flying targets, and the burst must be quite long to put enough rounds into the target to damage it significantly, especially heavily armored gunships. The cannon should fire faster, putting more rounds toward the target, increasing the chances of a hit. The HE rounds are also too large and heavy (and therefore drop too much) to make hitting aircraft at anything besides very close range possible. And lastly, there are not nearly enough rounds in the cannon. 300 rounds is only enough to shoot down about 2 aircraft, unless you get very lucky with your shot placement. I believe the AA variant of the A-143 should have a faster firing cannon that fires a lighter, less powerful, non-explosive round, which trades it's power (and size) for a larger ammunition capacity.


Legacy ID
Steps To Reproduce

Place several air targets, and attempt to shoot them down using only the cannon of the A-143 Buzzard.

Additional Information

tl;dr: the AA variant of the A-143 Buzzard needs to fire a slightly weaker, lighter round that has better ballistics (including traveling faster), the cannon needs to have a higher RPM, and carry far more ammunition.

Event Timeline

the_Demongod edited Additional Information. (Show Details)
the_Demongod set Category to Gameplay.
the_Demongod set Reproducibility to Always.
the_Demongod set Severity to None.
the_Demongod set Resolution to Open.
the_Demongod set Legacy ID to 1079804633.May 7 2016, 4:42 PM

But isn´t the Buzzard´s role primarily CAS? So there might not be a variant gun available for AA duties.

Afterall Buzzard is very underpowered for CAS an AA aircraft.

I think the CAS Buzzard should have a 30 mm cannon with the same number of rounds as it is now and the AA one should have a faster firing 20 mm cannon with more rounds.

stonestriker: there is an AA variant as well. I feel like it should be more anti-air effective.
AD2001: that was my thought exactly.

I know there is an AA variant that can be used, but I was arguing that the plane was built for CAS, but can be equipped to provide basic AA capability. This would make sense for a small country that cannot afford multiple plane types.

However while exchanging bombs for AA missiles is a simple process that can be done by ground crew in a few hours, I am not sure that the gun is made to be "plug-and-play" the same way.

ah I see what you mean. But until we get some better jets, I'd just like to see some better AA capability.

B00tsy added a subscriber: B00tsy.May 7 2016, 4:42 PM

THe CAS version is fine and should fire HE rounds (take out ground troops), but the AA version should indeed have a different ammo/cannon that is more suited for dogfights. You still have ASRAAMS though, and you can customize/script how many missiles it carries.

exactly. Ideally, there would be a simple way to completely customize the jet's loadout, but at least for now we need a more effective AA cannon.

perteel added a subscriber: perteel.May 7 2016, 4:42 PM

Agree with this. The 20mm is totally ineffective against everything most notably infantry and aircraft. I'm an accurate shot on small/moving targets but I find myself time again hitting a Pawnee with 10+ shots and it still continues to fly. Same thing on infantry and jets as you can fire multiple rounds on them and you do little damage. These rounds should shred lightly armoured targets not tickle them.

The 20mm round should be made stronger so it's more in-line with the 30mm which is an effective round in game. Either that or greatly increase the fire rate.

To be honest this issue isn't really relevant anymore, in fact the A-143 is now pretty much the best dogfighter out of any of the other jets, and its cannon fires much faster now.

It is relevant as one of the most played mods in Arma 3 is Sa-Matra's KOTH and the Buzzard is one of the most used jets in that but still suffers for it's 20mm being way underpowered. Dogfights become people spamming AA and hardly ever resorting to the cannons.

Also the CAS variant should be able to better mop up infantry and lightly armoured vehicles as it's tricky enough to get shots on travelling at 200kph+ and the fact you're not likely ever going to see the infantry you're shooting at as you rely on team mates calling them out so a buff on the cannons wouldn't make the Buzzard overpowered.

Well obviously Air to Air missiles are much more powerful than the cannon. The cannon is pretty realistically powered now, I can kill pretty much any enemy aircraft no matter the skill in a matter of seconds, I don't think it needs to change.

Not seeing things is a big part of CAS, that's why you have JTAC.

I don't play arcade-y scenarios like KOTH but perhaps the AA weapons should "cost" more (if that's a thing), or be removed entirely.
But this ticket should be closed now, to be honest. The Buzzard is quite realistic and has more than enough killing power in its cannon. Its new improved rate of fire makes it quite the adversary to the CAS jets actually.