Improve Your Skills

By Vudak

Every so often a new guy will ask for tips on how to get better at Aces High. My best advice is to treat it like a sport.

There are a few key ways to quickly get better at a sport. I will use hockey as an example because it is my sport and because it is a fairly multinational one at that.


  • You study the terminology of the sport.
  • You watch professional hockey games.
  • You try to emulate what the professionals do.
  • If available, you get a professional to help you one on one.
  • You pay attention to your bad habits the professional points out, and you work to correct them.
  • You practice shooting and skating on your own with a net and some cones.
  • You play against people your own skill level;
    8. You play with bigger, better kids as often as you can.
  • You approach it all with a good attitude.


This is all completely possible to do in Aces High.


1. If you’re going to get good at Aces High, you need to do studying first. You need to know what other people are talking about when they say, “Lead turn,” for example. You need to have a basic understanding of the planes and what they are well suited for. You need to know how to work your controls, etc.

The way to do this is to do what nearly every single good player before you has done. READ. There are thousands of pages available in books and scattered across the internet to help you get better at this game. You should be reading as much of it as you can if you want to improve.


2. Instead of watching a professional game, watch the films of veterans. Go to a King of the Hill and watch it in God Mode after you’ve been dispatched. See how the better sticks do their thing. You’ll notice they do certain things in a similar way. If you want to improve, it stands to reason that you should learn how to do these things too.


3. Three is self explanatory. You try to do the things you’ve see done in the films of better players.


4. If available, you get a professional to help you. Luckily enough, that is what the trainers are here for. They are all highly skilled players with, in many cases, decades of experience with flight sims, and they know how to teach as well. You cannot go wrong by asking them for help.


5. No matter how skilled you are your trainer will find things in your game that you can do better. Listen to your trainer. If you’re not going to listen to them, you’re wasting both of your time.


6. Instead of practicing picking corners shooting at an empty net, practice shooting the drones offline. Try different angles and distances. Turn your tracers off, fire short bursts, and try to develop a “sight picture” of what works and what does not. Poor aim will get you killed in Aces High almost as much as poor decisions. Good aim will let you survive the latter, every now and then.


7. Find a buddy of the same skill level as you and practice with him. Go to the Training Arena, take your favorite planes, and just have at it for a few ammo and fuel loads. Once someone is unshakably on the other’s six, break off and remerge. Keep going at it, take the fight as slow as you can, and really learn the planes low speed envelope. This is the best way in the world to learn how to control a nearly stalling plane, and that is a skill you are going to need to know unless you plan on running away from everyone your entire time in Aces High.


8. Play with the big boys. This is key. The absolute best way to improve in any sport is to play against people who are better than you. It forces you to up your game to have any chance, and by doing so, you improve, even if (more like when), you get rocked. You need to find people better than you, and get them into the DA. If you’re a defenseman in hockey, you need to get burned in many 1 on 1’s before you’ll realize what they’re doing to you, and how to counter it. The same logic applies to Aces High, only better. Whereas in a sport you might be hard pressed to find your opponents willing to give advice, in Aces High, most of the good players are so starved for good fights that they’ll offer it in heaps and barrels. Take advantage of this.


9. The most important thing to remember when you’re trying to improve at a sport or Aces High is to have fun and to consider your losses as lessons and not defeats. You can’t be afraid of losing. Your goal should be to hold your own more and more with each passing week until you finally get to the skill level you desire. No one ever held their own by running away.


Also, you need to have a good attitude and be a gracious winner and loser. Since you aren’t good, there’s no reason for you to trash talk at this point anyway, and doing so is just going to give you a reputation of being someone people should squelch rather than help (It’s also going to make you look and feel pretty stupid when someone you mouthed off to destroys you in three turns). Playful chiding with your friends is one thing, being a jerk is another. This world has enough jerks, and I know I for one don’t have much interest in helping them out.