The Mitsubishi A6M Zero-Sen (Allied code name Zeke) was developed in 1937 as a carrier-based aircraft for the Japanese Navy and first flew in the 1939. Allies haven't taken notice of these inconspicuous little planes, although they already had unambiguous reports received during the Japanese campaign in China from British pilots of the Flying Tigers volunteer corps, who warned about the excellent maneuverability of this Japanese fighter.
A rude awakening came to the Allies only after Pearl Harbor: In the months just after the devastating attack on the U.S. Pacific Fleet in December 1941, they inspired in the "Zeros" their enemies with an almost supernatural fear. They had a reputation of being the fastest and most agile of all Japanese fighters with the greatest destructive power. Just the message "Zero approaching" strikeв fear and terror in American pilots. However, that changed it the end of 1942/early 1943 he when Hellcat and Corsair appeared, battle powerful fighters, on the scene of which "Zero" finally lost its championship.
In addition to that, the Japanese had lost many of their best pilots in the battles of Midway, the Coral Sea and the Philippine Sea. The junior pilots lacked experience to compensate for the performance deficiencies of the "Zero" to the high powered American figthers by skillful maneuvers. Although the "Zero" had lost its dominance, it remained a serious opponent for each Allied aircraft until end of the war.
In Forgotten Hope Secret Weapon, there are many versions and subversions of the "Zero", ranging from the first production A6M2b series to merely existing as a prototype A6M8c. Unfortunately, the same model from Forgotten Hope was used, so that the individual variants differ not much outside.
A6M2b was the first mass-produced version of the "Zero", it is therefore found only on the early Pacific maps.
There are three versions of the A6M3: in addition to the basic version, it is still a fighter-bomber variant, as well as the improved implementation of the A6M3a. The difference between the A6M3 and A6M3a is a 20-mm gun, which was modified slightly. The cadence is slightly less, so penetrating power of the individuals is higher.
The A6M5b gets to the A6M3a, a much further improved version of the Type 99 20-mm machine guns. In addition, a 7.7-mm machine gun was replaced by the 13.2-mm machine gun.
|General Historical Information|
|Place of origin||Japan|
|Category||Fighter/Ground attack aircraft|
|General Ingame Information|
|Used by||Empire of Japan|
3 x 13.2 Type 3 machine gun - 720 rounds
2 x 20 mm Type 99-2 Model 4 cannons - rounds
|Rockets||6 x 100 mm Type 3 No.1 Mk 28 HE rockets|
The A6M5c had thicker armored glass in the cabin's windshield and armor plate behind the pilot's seat. The wing skinning was further thickened in localized areas to allow for a further increase in diving speed. This version also had a modified armament fit of three 13.2 mm (.51 in) Type 3 machine guns (one in the forward fuselage, and one in each wing with a rate of fire of 800 rpm), twin 20 mm Type 99-II guns and an additional fuel tank with a capacity of 367 L (97 US gal), often replaced by a 250 kg bomb. In FHSW, the plane can be launched from the IJN Ōyodo with a catapult. The A6M5c can carrying six 100-mm HE rockets beneath the wings, so they can provide good ground support.
The interesting variants of A6M8c are 2 and 3. The first version has four shrapnel-filled missiles. In reality, this was developed for air combat and in the game, it can be used for this purpose, since the missile flies relatively quickly. Particularly it is a great help in the fight against heavy bomber, even if the B-29 "Superfortress" is sufficient to hit in order to destroy it. You can also use the rocket against lightly armored vehicles and infantry, but against tanks they are ineffective.
Version 3 has four APHE 200 mm rockets, which are effective against all air and ground targets. Multiple hits are needed to destroy heavy armour vehicles.