Basic Plane HierarchyEdit
Planes are divided into five categories and nine tiers. The nine tiers basically describes what "level" your plane is. In addition to tiers, planes are divided into the Performance, Combat, Trading, Stock and Upgrade lines.
Performance planes focus on speed and maneuverability; they have low armor and cargo, high speed and high maneuver. Combat planes generally follow along the lines of "Slow and sturdy wins the fight", and are relatively slow in their tier but have high firepower and armor, and often moderately high maneuver and cargo. Trade planes have the most cargo but are usually the slowest of their tier, with moderate amounts of armor but poor maneuverability. Stock planes and Upgrade planes are effectively similar in 2.5, both having high levels of Upgrade Slots in all areas.
T1 Combat: Mastiff
- An excellent plane by any standard. Maneuvers a little stiffly, but that can't be helped. Passable trader as well.
T1 Performance: Thor
- Relatively difficult plane to fight in due to low armor. Still, will hold its own if you know how to circle and snipe.
T1 Trade: Nomad
- Another very good plane. Doesn't have speed, but with a suitable mod on the medium gun it can take on combats that might faze other T1s.
T1 Overall: Avoid the Thor if you are impatient at combat. Otherwise, all the planes are decent picks.
T2 Combat: Valkyrie
- The plane to chose if you you want combat. However, your trading will be crimped by serious range issues.
T2 Performance: Marauder
- Not yet especially outstanding, the Marauder is best if you greatly prefer Performance-style planes to either trading or combat.
T2 Trade: Kittyhawk
- With decently positioned arcs, the Kittyhawk is at least able to defend itself. However, the main reason to get this plane is for the range and cargo; it will let you reach skylands that the other T2s cannot.
T2 Overall: Pick trade or combat as per your tastes for the quickest money making, otherwise the Marauder is passable.
T3 Combat: Mkii
- The Mkii is a decent fighter; the arcs in front are pretty good at chewing up pirates.
T3 Performance: Requin
- A somewhat sub-par performance plane in some peoples' eyes. With overlapping arcs and decent speed the Requin performs well, though the physical size and Silhouette of it make the Requin one of the largest Performance planes.
T3 Trade: Halifax
- The Halifax has the best CKPH and range of the tier, and is generally typical of trade planes otherwise; a bit slow, big, but protected by decent guns and an amount of Armor Class
T3 Stock: Chapparal
- The Chappy is fast, has decent range and cargo, a tiny sil, and a decent gun placement. A passable all-around plane.
T3 Overall: The Mkii is a bit steadier than the Chappy in combat, due to its higher armor and concentrated front firepower. For trading the Halifax clearly wins out, though the Chappy is decent if one is willing to buy a few Upgrades
T4 Combat: Phantom
- A powerhouse for mopping up messes of lower tier planes, the Phantom is great for the combat pilot who just wants to make money by fighting mid/lower level combats. May encounter trouble against higher tier Perf/Combat planes such as Havocs and Novas due to lower speed/accel
T4 Performance: Loki
- The plane of choice for combat pilots who enjoy pushing the limit. Although it has half the firepower of the Phantom, the higher speed, maneuver and acceleration give it greater survivability if one is adept at dodging fire.
T4 Trade: Cyclops
- Though slow, the Cyclops makes up for it in range and cargo. Though not suited for high level combats, it can hold its own in most fights. A good plane for pure traders or sporadic players that do little combat.
T4 Upgrade: Excelsior
- A more expensive, less combat capable version of the Chappy, due to it's large size. The Excel's guns are decent,though the awkward angles . Most useful if you have lots of upgrades from previous tiers.
T4 Overall: A fairly well balanced tier, you should be able to earn good money and have fun. Note that all plane's arcs and general stats are roughly similar to how their Tier 9 counterparts will turn out.
T5 Combat: Seahawk
- Basically a powered up Phantom, with one of the best forward gun setups in the game.
T5 Performance: Mantis
- The Mantis suffers from a relatively large sprite, but is otherwise similar to other Performance planes.
T5 Trade: Barracuda
- Due to it's Armor Class the Barracuda is nearly invincible in low-level combat, and passable in some higher level combats. It's lower speed is made up for by great cargo, though it can be frustrating in combat. The fastest true zeppelin.
T5 Upgrade: Dauntless
- A popular pick of T5, the Dauntless rivals the Seahawk in combat prowess, partially due to exceedingly small size. By this tier you should have some Upgrades, which can extend the Dauntless' useful lifetime.
T5 Overall: A well balanced tier, though certain performance or trade pilots can be turned off by their respective choices.
T6 Combat: Hades
- Your choice for blowing away pirates. Many a fighter pilot has upgraded to the Vengeance only to spend hours wishing they still had the ol' Hades... The shortest range and cargo capacity in T6, the Hades makes up for it with decent armor, ammo capacity, and maneuverability only slightly below the Cetacea. Flaks make the most of it's small gun mounts.
T6 Performance: Cetacea
- The largest of the Performance line, the Cetacea is passable due to added Armor Class, strong forward guns, and good upgrade slots.
T6 Trade: Bullfrog
- Double the cargo of any other T6 plane, this is your trader. Huge range and tough armor, but many disabled maneuvers. Due to its great gun arcs, the Bullfrog still holds its own exceedingly well for a Trading Line plane.
T6 Stock: Bolo
- A typical Stock plane, the Bolo is only especially different due to it's unusual arcs. They can be wielded effectively in combat, but their use is more complicated.
T6 Overall: This is a solid Tier no matter what you choose, though be aware that the Cetacea is not your typical Performance plane, with its high sil (and armor class).
T7 Combat: Vengeance
- The Vengeance has almost as much armor as the Thunderbolt, almost as much maneuver as the Havoc, almost as small sil as the Havoc, and a medium and large front arc with wide coverage. About the only reason you wouldn't pick a Vengeance for combat is if you must have symmetrical arcs.
T7 Performance: Havoc
- Perfect arc overlap with 2 mediums and a small arc, the Havoc has enough speed to chase down/flee from any other plane, and low enough stall to tail just about anything. If you like performance planes, the Havoc is a dream come true. Just like any other perf, be wary of longarms and flaks, as your armor won't last long. Great upgradability as well.
T7 Trade: Leviathan
- The Leviathan has almost triple the cargo space of the next highest cargo, but is also the slowest of the slow. With 5 medium turrets on each side and tough armor, the Leviathan doesn't go down easy either. The low speed is a factor, but it's CKPH is relatively through the roof, nearly equal to the Lancaster. Keep in mind that filling it's hull for the first time can be expensive.
T7 Upgrade: Seafire
- The Seafire has Cetacea-like triple front medium arcs, decent defense, and a somewhat large sil. Great guns for an Upgrade plane.
T7 Overall: T7 is an exceptionally good tier whether you choose C/P/T, with Upgrades being extremely helpful.
T8 Combat: Avenger
- The Avenger is a powerhouse, with 2 large guns it has as much focused firepower as the Thunderbolt. However, its speed leaves somewhat to be desired, and its large sil and size makes it unwieldly in combat. Most people prefer the T7 Vengeance, with its perf-like sil and similar guns.
T8 Performance: Nova
- The Nova is fast. And that's about it. With 1 less arc than the Havoc, and 1 less armor, the only upgrade over its T7 cousin is its speed (which is actually a drawback as its harder to tail slower planes, and the Havoc can already chase down any other plane), and its slightly smaller sil. The biggest improvement is it's added Upgrade slots, which allow a bit more freedom, especially if one wishes to maximize CKPH.
T8 Trade: Lancaster
- Large cargo, high armor, decent speed, and nice gun placement, the Lancaster is everything you would want in a trader, and is only slightly worse than the Kingfisher in terms of numbers. To top it all off, you've got the party dome, and with no disabled maneuvers, you're free to do whatever crazy stunts you want to keep those partygoers satisfied.
T8 Stock: Bismarck
- The Bismark is a combat zepplin, with speed, Armor and Armor Class to match, including 6 Large gun arcs. It's upgrade slots are mostly useful, though you'll note any Hull Upgrades or Wing Upgrades with negative speed give the Bismarck a massive disadvantage for a minor improvement in another area. With full armor upgrades it's next to invincible in combat. Typical speed concerns exist for both combat and trade, of course.
T8 Overall: As with all of the higher tiers, none of the planes are complete pushovers. If you've collected upgrades up to this point T8 can blaze by, as your plane can have exceedingly good stats due to already invested cash.
T9 Combat: Thunderbolt
- The Thunderbolt packs 2 large guns with perfect overlap and 110mm of armor onto a Performance plane's speed and maneuver. It's fast, it's deadly, it's durable, it looks ridiculous. The obvious choice for combat.
T9 Performance: Ingersoll
- By far the fastest plane in the sky, this is the typical choice for those running influence, and the best in trading luxuey goods without Batch Selling. Almost invisible with its 5 sil and tiny graphic, it is nearly unhittable except for crits and Long Arm guns. Its high speed makes tailing planes difficult, and its low armor gets shredded quickly if you're unlucky with crits, but certain Upgrades allow the Ingersoll good defense, and stall down to zero if one wishes.
T9 Trade: Kingfisher
- Great cargo, range, armor, and speed, this is the best Trader around, though certain changes in Luxury Goods have made trading at the top level a bit inconvenient for the Kingfisher. It is a bit large, but with its swiveling large tailgun it's well capable of defending itself, especially with some added defensive Upgrades. The lack of a front facing gun (the 2 mediums face outwards at an angle) takes some getting used to in combat.
T9 Upgrade: Spectre
- A sleek plane with great arcs and low sil, it has typically average overall stats. Still a popular pick, because of its perf-like sil, and more than double the armor of the Ingersoll. Furthermore, its an Upgrade machine, with the most Upgrade slots in the game.
T9 Stock: Barashiki
- A giant plane with a huge cargo hold, and 5 large (if awkward) guns, the Barashiki is a mix of a blimp and a plane. It's CKPH is slightly higher than the Spectre's, though the large hold and slightly more limited upgrade slots keep it from being especially outstanding.
T9 Overall: This is the last tier, and as such, every plane is the epitome of its type, though the Barashiki can be said to be more "different" than the Bismark, as opposed to being flat-out better..