F/A-18 Hornet (Legacy): History, Performance & Discussion

In terms of Legacy Hornet, these would be legit choices for each country:

  • United States: F/A-18C, F/A-18D(RC) (country of origin)
  • Germany: Swiss F/A-18C/D (Swiss Hunter F.58 as an event vehicle)
  • Britain: Canadian CF-18A/B or Australian F/A-18A/B (Commonwealth + Five Eyes contributors)
  • Sweden: Finnish F-18C/D (Finnish sub-tree)

Looks about alright
Was planning to say that Swiss F/A-18C would make sense for Germany

Wouldn’t it make more sense for the F/A-18A to come first for the US, there’s no need to jump straight to the C variant is there?

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I’m not at all against jumping straight to the C variant. They essentially did this for Russia with the Yak-38, and kinda sorta for MiG-23 and MiG-29… lol

The extra thrust on the C will be much appreciated by players tbh. It would be the most useable variant they could add

You’ve got a point. However I think, since we already have late 1990s LANTIRN-equipped F-14B Bombcat in game, the F/A-18 could be started as 1990s ‘late’ C/D variants.

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Personal I think Air-to-Ground ordinance on F/A-18A Hornet better and option varieties more than F-14B because now F-14B mounted guided bomb & unguided bomb but no AGM-65 Maverick & AGM-62 Walleye

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The default F/A-18A/B cannot use Maverick or LGB on its own. LGB and AGM-65E needs laser target designators but pre-1993 NITE Hawk targeting pod does not includes LTD. AGM-65F capability was introduced from F/A-18C/D, and missile itself achieved IOC in 1991.

I guess IR & SARH Air-to-Air Missile on F/A-18A 2x AIM-9H (stock) & AIM-9L sidewinder, BVR AIM-7F or AIM-7M & AIM-7P sparrow

But I’m not sure that guess right ?

Two 9Ls stock
9H researchable
Only 7Ms or 7Ps if they arrive with it

And you guess dev consider AIM-9M on F/A-18A Hornet in the future ?

Always a possibility down the line

I only worry about jumping straight for the C variant as it’s possible Gaijin add the AMRAAM to it when that releases and it would suck not to have an AIM-7 only version of the F/A-18 in the tree, I think it would generally be good to keep the C/D variants waiting until these advanced ARH missiles come.

I know you said the F/A-18A couldn’t laser designate targets until C/D but what about TV guided munitions?

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Yeah, laserguided bombs are pretty meh in current Warthunder meta. Almost impossible to use in GFRB without getting shot down. Can’t remember when I last used Tornado, I stopped spawning it. You need F&F standoff weapons like Mavs or TV guided bombs. Everything else is bs.

As a side note for the F/A-18 i do also hope we see an overhaul of carriers and how carrier landings in perticular are handled. Still a buggy endevour and ive all but given up except in a STOVL aircraft like the Gr7

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The Hornet is capable of Walleye by default, but it could only be loaded on station 2/8.

However the F/A-18C/D has the same limit, since it introduced in 1987 and AN/AAS-38A with LTD entered service since January 1993. So the pre-1993 ‘early’ C/D is pretty much same as A/B but with AN/APG-73 radar (1991), improved F404-GE-402 engine (1992) and AGM-65F Maverick (1991).

That mean F/A-18C early without AIM-120A AMRAAM, equipped targeting pod, IR & SARH Air-to-Air Missile and Air-to-Ground ordiance same as F/A-18A but radar & engine better ?

Yes. And except better engine, most additional features of C/D Hornets are retrofitted to some A/B Hornets by plus upgrade.

To prevent further confusion, I’ve summarized the loadouts of U.S. Hornets.

In air-to-air armament, I’ve excluded IR missiles with IRCCM capabilities and ARH missile beyond AIM-120B, on purpose. Same thing applied to some air-to-ground weapons like anti-radiation missiles, anti-ship missiles, and standoff missiles.

F/A-18A/B (1983), F/A-18C/D (1987)


F/A-18C/D (1991)


F/A-18A+/B+ (1995), F/A-18C/D (1993)


USMC F/A-18A+/B+/C/D (2008)



Actually it’ll depends on when and how Gaijin adds F/A-18 to the game. For now I believe it is very unlikely that F/A-18 will be added before Q2 2024. If AMRAAM or similar ARH missiles comes earlier than that, there will be very little chances for Sparrow-only Hornet.