Ace Combat Zero: The Belkan War/Game Mechanics and Glitches

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Game Mechanics

Be sure to check out the additional resources page for a general game things like playable aircraft stats and how wingmate commands work. This section will include an explanation of speedrunning strategies with relation to the game mechanics.



Each aircraft will have a different speed stat, this stat actually effects quite a few things, including the soft and hard speed caps, and the rate at which you accelerate. Obviously a faster craft will be able to accelerate faster, and have a higher speed cap. Slowing down with the air brakes and speeding back up will lose a hefty amount of time when traveling between targets, so the general strategy should be to keep up at max speed for as long as possible without slowing down. Even if this means looping a little bit out of the way in order to keep your speed, it's usually worth it. Unfortunately by moving quickly, you have less time to react and take out targets, so a mistake at max speed is going to be more costly than a slow flying mistake.


Each aircraft will also have a mobility stat, this effects the rate at which the aircraft can turn. While AC0 is not nearly as extreme as previous AC games, going from an F4 to a SU-37 is pretty jarring. Getting used to how fast each aircraft can turn is an important part of being able to efficiently control the craft.


Each aircraft has a stability stat, this stat effects the minimum speed it can travel at without stalling. Aircraft with high stability stats will be able to slow down to much lower speeds, which can be useful when you need to pump damage into a single slow/unmoving target.



Save 2 score missions, every other mission in AC0 ends when you finish off all priority targets. Priority targets are USUALLY red, as in, 99% of the time you need to shoot down every one in order to complete the mission. There are a few exceptions in which a specific target will trigger the end of a mission, or the next stage of a mission, without needing to kill all red targets. An example of this is the radar jammers in mission 9, which appear as red, but the mission still ends if you destroy Excalibur without destroying the jammers as well.


Luckily AC0 is one of the most consistent games damage wise (at least on very easy). Most ground craft require only 1 missile to destroy, while most flying craft take 2 missiles to take out.


All aircraft you engage with the exception of bombing craft will require dogfighting to destroy. This is a process of lining up your craft's direction, and the enemies craft's direction in order to successfully get a missile hit. There are in general 2 angles in which you have to come at an enemy craft in order to destroy it. The first is head on, if both craft are traveling at one another, a missile will usually hit the target, the downside to coming straight at another craft is that if they move even the slightest direction away from you, you're probably going to miss. The second and more consistent way is to fire a missile from behind the craft, this method is much more reliable and the recovery from missing is also very short, as you can still pursue them.


Altitude Cap Stalling

Video explanation link. AC0 is one of the few AC games where you can stall your plane at the altitude cap to gain a bit of speed past the soft cap. Simply stall the airplane at the altitude cap of 31.9k while holding acceleration. You will continue speeding up as you gain control of the aircraft, this allows you get get an easy extra 20% more speed in a short amount of time.

Lazer Skip

Video explanation link. In mission 08 - Merlon, you can pass through the lazer if you are going fast enough, this is only really possible while using the altitude stalling glitch for enough speed.

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