Anti-Aircraft, in Battlefield 2, are, as the name suggests, units that are designed to defend against enemy aircraft, such as fighter jets and helicopters. There are two types of anti-aircraft exist in the game; a single, static AA site that cannot be moved, and a mobile AA vehicle designed specifically to take out aircraft.
Static AA SitesEdit
Static anti-aircraft sites are anti-aircraft missiles that spawn at certain points in a map, usually in control points to defend against enemy aircraft. Each launcher has two missiles that lock on to enemy aircraft, but are capable of reloading indefinitely, meaning that there are an infinite amount of missiles. Despite the fact that each missile does a substantial amount of damage to enemy aircraft, they do virtually no damage to enemy armor. It has been tested that around twelve missiles are required to destroy a tank at full health, the most armored vehicle in the entire game. Being in a static AA site means that the played is a sitting duck for snipers and land vehicles, since the missile does not hit at the exact center of the reticle. Because of this, it is advised that the static AA is used solely on enemy aircraft.
Each side has their own version of the AA launchers; the US and EU teams use the Stinger Missile site, while the MEC and PLA teams use the IGLA. Although the launchers have a different design and reticle, these differences are purely cosmetic, as both perform at the same level.
Another type of static AA that is present in the game are the two Phalanx CIWS turrets that are located on the USS Essex (LHD-2), known in game simply as the USS ESSEX. The user controlling the site has control of a phalanx gun, with a high rate of fire and is capable of destroying an aircraft in seconds. This gun is also prone to overheating when firing continuously. He/she also has control of eight sea sparrow missiles that also lock on and track enemy aircraft. All AA weapons on the USS Essex are also equipped with infinite ammo, although the missiles must also reload. It is also possible to drop a supply crate next to the turret, effectively providing infinite ammo with no reload to the missile launcher.
The second type of anti-aircraft in the game are mobile anti-aircraft vehicles, equipped with heat seeking missiles and an AA gun. However, the anti-aircraft vehicles do have their differences that separate each other apart. The AA vehicles in the game are as follows:
The Bradley Linebacker sets itself apart from its MEC and PLA counterparts because, instead of an AA gun with a high rate of fire, it fires single explosive rounds, one at a time. This makes the Linebacker a better choice for engaging infantry, but harder to track and lead shots into enemy aircraft because of the slow rate of fire. Another noticeable difference is that the Tunguska, while fired in first position view, has a circular part that partially obstructs the bottom half of the screen, making it harder to locate enemy infantry. The faster firing rate of the PLA and MEC AA vehicles make it easier to follow enemy aircraft, and also harder for tank drivers to line up a shot, as the fast stream of rounds are capable of blinding the view of a tank.
Driver- Completely protected, armed with main gun and heat seeking missiles.
Passenger- Stands in the open top hatch, completely exposed to enemy fire, has no vehicle equipped armament.
The passenger of the AA vehicle is a sitting duck to enemy fire, as he/she does not have any weapons besides his/her own. Also, more of their body is exposed in the open than a tank. However, an engineer in the passenger position is capable of repairing the vehicle by using their wrench, providing a mobile repairman that does not have to exit the vehicle.
Armament and ProtectionEdit
M242 25mm Chaingun (Linebacker) - Capable of firing single rounds with more power than a round from its counterparts. Equipped with () rounds.
25/30mm Cannons (PLA and MEC) - Faster firing rate than the M242, but rounds are split into two sides and is harder to concentrate fire on a single spot. Equipped with () rounds.
Heat-Seeking Missiles - Locks on to and destroys enemy aircraft. Each vehicle is equipped with 4 missiles and 2 reloads, giving a total of 12 missiles. Main weapon against enemy aircraft, as in most situations, the gun will be hard to land a shot on. Best when fired altogether and at aircraft flying away from the vehicle.
- All fighter jets, regardless of type, will take two missiles to shoot down
- Attack helicopters will generally take two missiles to set ablaze
- Transport helicopters will usually require three missiles to do enough damage to set it ablaze.
The major downside of a mobile AA is that is has no way to defend itself against an enemy vehicle. While the gun can do a limited role in anti-infantry and anti-transport, there is no way to defend against an armored vehicle. The armor of an AA will be able to take two shots from a heavy weapon, meaning that two rockets, tank shells, C4, or any combination will destroy it. Even an APC will have no problem making quick work of a mobile AA, so it is advised to either attempt fleeing from armor, or travel with tanks, as the tanks will protect the AA, and the AA can, in turn, defend against enemy aircraft that are making a run at the tank. Therefore, attacking and defending should only be used as a last resort against the enemy.