- This article is about the video game. For Operation Allied Force, see 1999 NATO bombing of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia.
Falcon 4.0: Allied Force (F4AF) is an F-16 based combat flight simulator created by company Spectrum Holobyte and further developed by MicroProse and now by Lead Pursuit. Lead Pursuit was formed after gaining a license from Atari (who later owned the license) to continue Falcon 4.0 development. Many of its employees were members of the Falcon 4.0 modding community [. ]
Allied Force was released on June 28, 2005, and is largely a compilation and unification of existing modifications over the original Falcon 4.0 and the official patches. Prominent members of the Falcon 4.0 modding community were hired into Lead Pursuit [. Allied Force also introduced several major new features and improvements in realism and stability. ]
- Significant differences from Falcon 4.0, the original MicroProse version:
- Airbases enhanced and terrain tiles redone
- AI wingman commands and functions, others reworked
- 110-page printed manual, plus 760 page PDF manual
Falcon 4.0:Allied Force is a detailed simulation; like other simulations, it may take the user some time to become proficient and familiar with all of its features. Allied Force comes with a 716 page manual, which can act as a "quick start" guide to flying a military jet. Allied Force focuses primarily on learning to fly and fight in an F-16, yet also allows the user to manage all the ground and air assets in a campaign if they wish, or control and vector fighters as part of an E-3 AWACS squadron.
The simulation allows the user to control the level of realism: the player can either set the realism settings on maximum, or enable options such as invulnerability and unlimited ammo; this may make the game easier for newcomers or players who wish to have a less realistic experience.
A player that enables many of the realism settings must work with his Wingmen, friendly assets such as AWACS, JSTARS, Airborne Tankers, Forward Air Controllers, and other friendly aircraft if he wishes to be successful.
The emphasis of the simulation's air combat is the use of Beyond Visual Range missiles to destroy opponents many miles away, while maintaining the pilot's situational awareness. The player must therefore learn not only offensive tactics, but an ability to detect and counter a threat such as an incoming enemy missile. Due to the nature of Beyond Visual Range fighting, Within Visual Range (Dogfighting) is rare in the game's campaign modes. There is, however, an "Instant Action" mode, where dogfighting may occur.
The game provides simulations and training missions for some common situations, such as: landing during an engine flameout, BFM, navigation using on-board instruments, avoiding SAMs, and deploying various weapons against air and ground targets.
Allows the player to setup a situation in which dogfighting will take place. This is a multiplayer mode where two or more humans can combat one another over the Internet.
Tactical Engagement mode
Here a player can build a mission with a number of customizable parameters, including the target, payload, enemy presence, customization of aircraft, etc. This is also a multiplayer mode.
Falcon 4.0:Allied Force has a dynamic and customizable campaign. Once a player starts a campaign, the game will begin executing the campaign in real time. Thus, even when the player is not flying, other aircraft, ships, armies and anti-aircraft sites may still be fighting. This is represented to the player in a 2D map where objects can be displayed or hidden. The player can accelerate the campaign, set up new flights, select weapons load-outs, view target areas and map waypoints before the time arrives for the next mission.
The campaign modes take place in the virtual battlefields of Korea and the Balkans, which can be configured based on historical data from 1999, 2005 or from how the area might appear in 2010. Each timeline will automatically change the type of weapons and sophistication of aircraft used in the campaign.
Korea The simulation includes the original Korean peninsula battlefield between North and South Korea. Here NATO forces support South Korea in various scenarios that can also involve China supporting North Korea.
3 campaigns are included for this region:
- Operation Tiger Spirit
- Operation Rolling Fire
- Operation Iron Fortress
Here NATO forces take on Serbia, supported by Russia.
3 campaigns are included for these regions:
- Operation Powderkeg
- Operation Balance of Power
- Operation Under Siege
(Any of the 6 campaigns above can be set in the years 1999, 2005 or 2010.)
The campaigns can also be played online over the Internet. Here teams of players around the world can fly together in strike package formations as wingmen and help one another complete the assigned mission by attacking ground targets, enemy jets, and accomplishing other mission objectives. Multivipers is one example of such Virtual Squadrons.
Lockheed Martin F-16 Fighting Falcon (Viper) versions included
- F-16A M
- F-16A Block 15
- F-16C Block 25
- F-16C Block 30
- F-16C Block 32
- F-16AM /MLU (Mid Life Update) Block 50 level avionics
- F-16CG Block 40
- F-16CG Block 42
- F-16CJ Block 50
- F-16CJ Block 52
- F-16CM Block 40 CCIP (Common Configuration Implementation Program)
- F-16CM Block 42 CCIP (Common Configuration Implementation Program)
- F-16CM Block 50 CCIP (Common Configuration Implementation Program)
- F-16CM Block 52 CCIP (Common Configuration Implementation Program)
- F-16DG Block 40
- F-16DJ Block 52
Air to Air Missiles carried by the F-16 in the simulation
- AIM-9 Sidewinder - AIM-9P, AIM-9M, AIM-9X variants.
- AIM-120 AMRAAM - AIM-120B, AIM-120C-4, AIM-120C-5 variants.
- Python - Python 4.
Air to Ground weapons carried by the F-16 in the simulation
- Gravity Bombs - MK-82, MK-83, MK-84, B-61 (Nuke),BSU49/B, BSU-50B, BLU-107/B (Durandal).
- Cluster Bombs - CBU-52/B, CBU-58/B, CBU-71/B, CBU-87/B, CBU-94/B, CBU-97SFW, MK-20D (Rockeye).
- Laser Guided Bombs Paveway II - GBU-10C, GBU-10I, GBU-12B/B.
- Laser Guided Bombs Paveway III - GBU-22B, GBU-24B, GBU-24B/B.
- Air to Ground Missiles - AGM-88C (HARM), AGM-65B/D/G (Maverick).
- Rockets - LAU-5003A.
Internal F-16 Gun
- M61A1 Vulcan - 20 mm Gatling Gun
A selection of other non flyable aircraft in the simulation
(all fixed-wing aircraft are flyable (except for AWACS) with a slight modiffication in the game files)
- MiG-17 Fresco
- MiG-19 Farmer
- MiG-21 Fishbed
- MiG-23 Flogger
- MiG-25 Foxbat
- MiG-29 Fulcrum
- MiG-31 Foxhound
- Su-27 Flanker
- Su-30 Flanker
- Su-37 Super Flanker
- Su-25 Frogfoot
- Su-39 Frogfoot
- G-4 Super Galeb
- Soko J-22 Orao
- F-15C Eagle
- F-15E Strike Eagle
- F-14A/B/D Tomcat
- FA-18C/D Hornet
- FA-18E/F Super Hornet
- F-22A Raptor
- F-117A Nighthawk
- EF-2000 Typhoon / Eurofighter
- A-10A Thunderbolt
- B-1B Lancer
- B-2A Spirit
- F-5E Tiger II
- AH-64A Apache
- AH-1 Cobra
- Sepecat Jaguar
- Panavia Tornado ADV
- Panavia Tornado
- Mirage 2000
- KC-135 Stratotanker
- E-3 Sentry
- E-8 Joint STARS
- KC-10 Extender
- C-17 globemaster III
The game includes a useful database including most ground vehicles, aircraft, weapons, and ships that are in the simulation. Each entry is presented with an image and text information on the subject.
ACMI player (Air Combat Maneuvering Instrumentation)
In game, players can record parts of their flight which can then be reviewed later in the ACMI. Here the fight from any angle or viewpoint can be played, paused rewound or forwarded through. Also information can be shown on the screen such as turn rate, speed, turn radius, and altitude to help a pilot ascertain where they may be going wrong.
Lead Pursuit has been updating the game with new patches, considerably enhancing the functionality of the simulation as they've released them — particularly in the multiplayer aspect, which now allows extremely smooth close-up formation flying for players across the world. One of the most popular online Allied Force servers is Multivipers, which runs real-time campaigns lasting days. Players jump into missions — whatever missions they like — and their success or otherwise determines the course of the campaign.
The development team Lead Pursuit are rumored to be in production of the successor to Falcon 4.0: Allied Force.[ Graphsim, the publisher of Falcon 4.0: Allied Force, has announced that Falcon 4.0: Allied Force for Intel Macs is in beta test phase. ] With the demise of Microsoft Flight Simulator the Falcon name could claim to be the longest running flight simulation series. [ ]
Although not programmed originally with modification in mind there are several graphical enhancements available from hobbyists to give the objects and terrain more detail.
- New Aircraft and Weapon skins.
- New Terrain.
- New Cockpits.
- Best Combat Simulator -- Bravo Zulu Award. From the judges: "We thought this a fitting designation for the truly outstanding contributions of new simulators and related hardware, aircraft, panel, scenery, and add-on utilities we've seen this past year. We've selected what AVSIM Online's Editors judge to be the best from both freeware and commercial product (including shareware) publishers and developers."
PC GAMER MAGAZINE
- 89% Must Buy Award: "The real joy of the game is seeing the complex, constantly changing conflicts first-hand from the cockpit of the gravity-mocking F-16 jet. Three variants of the versatile Falcon are modelled, each with breathtakingly faithful avionics and cockpit functionality. Sensational campaigns, superlative realism, impressive scaleability. Go purchase the most realistic, most absorbing jet sim money can buy."
PC PILOT MAGAZINE
- 5 out of 5 Classic Award: "To say that the campaigns in AF are a triumph would be to undersell them. Put plainly, no high-street sim can offer you a more accurate portrayal of a modern military airborne radar system. Lead Pursuit should be congratulated for refurbishing Falcon so successfully. It's significantly closer to perfection than any of its rivals."
PC ZONE MAGAZINE
- 82% Essential Award: "You suddenly realize that this is a game, sorry simulation, of such intelligence, such utter authenticity and attention to detail that few, if any, other flight sims can match its passion for avionic and tactical perfection. If you dedicate yourself to learning how an F-16 really flies ... then you'll find that Falcon 4.0: Allied Force is a work of genuine excellence."
- Lead Pursuit, the current developer and license holder
- Graphsim Entertainment, the current publisher
- Falcon History A timeline presenting the history of Falcon 4.0
- FalconLog Offline and online logbook information for Falcon 4.0 Allied Force
- Frugals World, Online community and database of helpful tips and information on how to fly and deploy weapons in the sim.
- FlyingAce.Eu - International mission repository for all versions of the Falcon sim
- Falcon Server Web Based Control Panel
- e-HAF.org The Hellenic Air Force Portal
- AMVI - Aeronautica Militare Virtuale Italiana - Italian community - Addon, Theater, Utility in download area
- TSHKK - Turkish Virtual Air Force - All Virtual Squadron From Turkey
- VIAF - Virtual Italian Air Force - the Italian virtual flight community dedicated to Falcon 4.0 Allied Force. The largest community by number of active users and number of operative fighting groups, the most advanced and intensive flight cooperative training and advanced qualifications, for Air-to-Ground, Air-to-Air, Air-to-Surface/NAVAL, Carrier Operations, AWACS and Air Traffic Control training/qualification
- Falcon Brasil- Brazilian community
- Québec Air Force 101st Virtual Fighter Squadron, first French-speaking virtual fighter squadron in Canada
- Escuadron111 Virtual Fighter Squadron, first Spanish virtual fighter squadron in Spain
- 103rd "Aegean Ghosts" A Hellenic Virtual Fighter Wing (Member of Greek Operation Forces)
- "Halcones Nocturnos" A Latin American Virtual Fighter Squadron, dedicated to Falcon 4.0 Allied Force
- "Escuadrón Puma" A Chilean Virtual Squadron dedicated to Falcon 4.0 Allied Force
- Global Naval Strike Force International Multiplayer Community for Air, Ground, Sea Sims fr:Falcon (simulation de vol)