|2012-08-20||Green-green-green! Para drops (low-level static line combat jumps) for Arma2*|
New on the menu: Para drops. Parachute jumps to spice up your Arma2 missions built here with PlannedAssault. Jump in large numbers at low-altitude as part of a combat jump, with the parachute automatically being deployed by means of a static line. Once on the ground, assemble in small teams, get your bearings, and attempt to attack the target.
One of Arma2's strengths is its ability to make things go F.U.B.A.R. on the battlefield. And jumping out of a plane being fired at definitely is a great start towards chaos. You'll find AI pilots dropping you away from the DZ, or doing another run when they botch up the first one. At the ground, you'll might encounter camouflaged AA positions. In the air, you might find yourself being blown to the wrong spot, crashing on roof tops or into trees... Why not give it a go?
You can set up a para drop mission the same way you created helicopter insertions or fast-rope insertions: start with selecting up to six infantry squads, and select on or more transport planes with sufficient total capacity to transport all infantry squads. You can use USAF, UMSC and Swedish C-130 Super Hercules, Anzac Hercules variants, Bundeswehr and French C-160 Transals, USMC MV-22 Ospreys, or Soviet and Russian Ilyushin Il-76 and Antonov An-72s. Put all infantry in the BLUFOR or OPFOR air cargo slots, and put the transport planes near the map's edge. For the para-dropping force, place a 'Clear 1' objective on the position to occupy. And generate your mission...
Feel free to given the opponent some AA capability, and add some fighter bombers on your side to 'prepare' the area for para drops, just prior to the para drop.
Like all PlannedAssaults 'features', paradrops also work for the opponent, and they work on large scale. By that, I mean you're also able to play a defensive mission against a hostile para drop, and without having to precisely plan where the opponent will land. And para drops work for a single plane, for a combination of planes, or for a combination of landings, as long as you stay within the current unit limit. And if you want to combine heli landings and para drops, be my guest.
The para drops have been implemented as automated ejects, from low-altitude (some 100m / 300ft, higher for larger planes that otherwise would fly into the ground). In the cargo bay, you'll receive a warning and a count-down at 20 seconds prior to the drop. The ramp or doors will open at that time. After the count down, you're tossed out of the plane.
Please note that the AI pilots are pretty stubborn, and sometimes turn away from the drop zone too early (mostly leading to an abort and retry, occasionally to a drop above water). In rare cases, the pilot touches down on a nearby airfield.
The para drop is scheduled after any 'preparation' of the drop zone by fighter bombers, if you add these to the mission.
Arma2 ships with transport aircraft for the BLUFOR (US Super Hercules transporters, and the USMC Osprey), but lacks any large transport aircraft for the Russian and Takistani forces. To make OPFOR landings a possibility, I've added Wings of Russia's Ilyushin Il-76 and Gnat's Antonov An-72. The Ilyushin Il-76 is an impressive plane, with capacity for 70 troopers and additional armored vehicles (not yet supported).
Have a clean smooth exit!