I’ve been wondering for awhile about exactly how the F-20 Tigershark should or would be implemented in War Thunder.
Based on how Gaijin decided to implement the Yak-41 and F-16AJ, I’d imagine it would be to full production specifications. However, the issue with that is which production standards it would be implemented to. There’s US Air National Guard standards (though this was only ever proposed), and export production standards.
However, there are a few things that kind of stick out to me.
For starters: While it was claimed that the F-20 was tested with “every weapon in the US arsenal”, I haven’t seen any images showing it being tested with variants of the Sidewinder, other than the AIM-9J/N/P.
I had also heard that the Tigershark was only ever tested with the AIM-9J/N/P series, since the countries it was initially meant to equip ONLY had access to those specific Sidewinders at that time.
There’s also the problem of Northrop stating it could use AIM-120 AMRAAMs (albeit they weren’t around to be tested/evaluated on the Tigershark), since it’d likely have to be decently high in terms of battle rating (12.0 at the least, most likely).
Even further complicating things is what variant of Maverick the Tigershark would get. It was tested with AGM-65A/B Mavericks, though I think the USAF started fielding the AGM-65D around 1984-1985, so it might be possible that the Tigershark could use them…
The Tigershark would be an interesting addition to War thunder, though indeed what missiles would it get as it might have F-16 performance with inferior missiles. Which brings the question of what BR would it be placed at, if it goes to low then you risk them stumping everything in the air and if too high it will get crushed based on current top tier meta.
There are sources showing that AGM-65D maverick is compatible with all B variant system without any additional modification, so there won’t be an issue for air to ground ammunition.
However, yes, AIM-120 and AIM-9L sources on F20A is scarce
I feel like the F-20 would probably be at 11.7 minimum, but 12.0 tops (if Gaijin ends up moving some planes to 12.3 later on)
Flight performance-wise, it’d be a worse F-16 (acceleration and turn rate), but also not by much.
Depending on ordnance and fuel load, you’d also be dealing with a lower Thrust to Weight ratio (probably within the 0.8/0.7 range, if you took full internal fuel, Sparrows, wingtip 'winders, and an external drop tank)
The biggest issue would be the limit on missiles:
If you wanted to take Sparrows, you could only equip 2x Sparrows and 2x Sidewinders (wingtip rails)
If you wanted JUST Sidewinders, you could take 6x (since the under wing pylons shared by both 'winders and Sparrows could use the dual rail system, allowing for 2x 'winders on each pylon).
Oh, that’s very interesting to know, much appreciated!
And yeah, I honestly wouldn’t be surprised if the whole AMRAAM capability for the Tigershark was just smoke and mirrors by Northrop to get the US interested in buying it for Air National Guard use…
To what standards it should be implemented you say?
The best one, if the F-16AJ and the Yak-141 can have that luxury then so should my beloved F-20
I think it would be a great filler between the F-5E and F-16s, as there is currently a big gap there and there would otherwise be no vehicles to add between these.
Give it AGM-65D, AIM-7F/M and AIM-9P-5 at 11.3, or AIM-9L at 11.7.
It should also be a far better dogfighter/turnfighter than the F-16s, unless they remove the BS limiter from them.
I have this pic from a brochure-type document indicating that the F-20 might be able to carry the AIM-120 (GROWTH BVR MISSILE), as it carried the AIM-7, I’m guessing the “growth” is meant a better/replacement missile, it also fits on the wingtip Sidewinder rails, which the AIM-120 does on the F-16, F-18 etc.
There is also the F-20, and the F-20A. The F-20 was analogue and the F-20A has a fly-by-wire iirc. The F-20A was significantly improved in many regards and made as sophisticated as early F-16s. The F-20A would be the only one capable of firing the AMRAAM.
11.7 for sure, same as Viggen essentially.
Since the project was cancelled in 1986, the word that Northrop would’ve added AMRAAM capability IMO isn’t enough. Especially when it was cancelled 5 years before AMRAAM entered service.
Obligatory German F-20 Pic posting
I don’t worry Air-to-Ground armament on F-20A Tigershark because better F-16A Block 10, F-14B Tomcat, F-4E Phantom II & A-7E Corsair II but not sure equipped targeting pod ?
I guess F-20 could be 12.0 if short-range Air-to-Air Missile & Air-to-Ground armament full options
Obligatory Turkish F-20 Pic posting
Obligatory South Korean F-20 Pic posting
Obligatory F-20 sales film posting:
It is a very good sales pitch.