There is an extremely problematic artificial nerf for the AIM-7F on the F-4S

Yes that is entirely correct. with those conditions it is either I fire grey and nothing happens unless its on the verge of turning red, which is usually an area that is near the Sidewinders maximum range, aka 3 miles away. Whenever it does turn red, no matter what the plane does that would theoretically “throw off a pulse doppler radar” the missile hits, but the range has to be so close it makes a mockery of the stated “62 mile launch range”.

So yes, that is right.

A few things:

Launch range != Effective range, sparrows likely won’t hit beyond ~20km head on because of enemies defending or kinematics

Rear aspect SARH in war thunder is sketchy anyway, no SARH missile likes rear aspect shots

You gotta shoot when the circle is red, that indicates the missile is actually detecting a target. If it’s grey the seeker pointing where your radar thinks there’s a target but when it’s red it is actually tracking said target. The missile will forcibly self destruct without the red circle. This applies for every missile in game with the circular seeker UI except the phoenixes

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Just because your radar can see the plane doesn’t mean the missile can. Missiles like the sparrow use CW guidance so don’t work great in the rear aspect.


I use AIM-7F in my F4J but for some reason the missile really likes to go in the wrong direction even with a good radar lock.

Okay cool, can you explain why it wouldn’t?

they work bad because radar signals (especially pulse based) face the doppler effect and in rear aspect the return signal comes back with a delay and thus confuses the seeker and gives it a lagged point of interception of the target.

If you want the in depth technical explanation: FOX 3: An Overview of ARH Missiles & BVR Combat - Page 4 - Aircraft Discussion - War Thunder - Official Forum

There is some debate as to if Gaijin are overplaying the rear aspect guidance issues. But it is based in reality.


There really shouldn’t be any debate that they are underperforming, especially in Co-Alt / Look up scenario. The thing to realize is that even with the much improved motor rear aspect performance doesn’t improve by anywhere near as much as that of forward Aspect

Since the Clutter and Target have the same doppler frequency in a Beam attack, either the head-on or stern attacks are recommended.

In stern launches, although the target signal is separated from Main Beam Clutter, it may have to compete with Side Lobe Clutter. Normally, the amplitude of the Side Lobe Clutter is not sufficient to limit missile usefulness

Stern Launches can be successfully accomplished if:

  • The target is above the interceptor.
  • The Pulse radar is being utilized. [The F-4J uses FM-CW Illumination (with a dedicated illuminator / exciter, its not actually part of the Radar, but is a separate part of the FCS that happens to be co-axially mounted to the antenna array) for AIM-7 guidance so this is solely an issue due to the radar needing to maintain a track on the target to keep the antenna pointed in the correct direction, not due to the missile itself, so if BST mode or auxiliary sensors were implemented this wouldn’t be strictly necessary].
  • and the interceptor is as high as possible to minimize Side Lobe Clutter effects on the missile speedgate.
AIM-7E, -7F & F-4J excerpt

NAVAIR 01-245FDB-1T 1972


My experience with 7F is, that it does not follow target lock. In last few dazy I noticed, that even when I lock target in radar, get 2 red circles as lock for missile. When I launch the missile it flies somewhere away, like it is locked on some absolute diferent target. I do not know if this is a bug, or it is just in game mechanics which should simulate malafunction.

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same thing happens to me. It’s almost like as if the missile is drunk

It’s a bug that people will vehemently defend as ‘realistic’ because they heard some crappy flashlight analogy

You can see the same lack of improvement in rear aspect performance for TEMP vs SuperTEMP here;


You can also see how poor rear aspect performance is in a shoot down situation;


And co-speed/altitude the range in rear aspect evens out to almost match;


but I am talking about head on situation, not rear aspect. from headon when it should shine, or perform at best. the missile does not follow the lock after it is launched.

I was replying to someone else.

I have had that issue too. I fixed it by binding a “Switch Secondary Weapon” key. Then just select the Aim-7F and that should fix the tracking problem.