You can just not fire special weapons at all if you want to be really fair
To answer the question though, I voted for TLS since it's almost worse than useless. Using it ties you down trying to keep the beam on target long enough to do damage, unlike UAVs where you can just send them off attack someone while continuing to dogfight with your own plane.
I wouldn't mind a DLC that shows stuff outside the context of the Lighthouse War, although this would probably kill the appeal for people for whom AC7 is their only main series game.
My idea: Battles from past wars that were mentioned/implied but not encountered by the player in the previous games, and using characters who weren't the protagonist of said games. Like Harling's retaking of Oured during the Circum-Pacific War, or Yellow Squadron stopping the first ISAF attack on Stonehenge.
You can also consult this wiki's page: https://acecombat.fandom.com/wiki/Post_Stall_Maneuver
Ace Combat Zero Two
If I were PA I'd probably remaster AC04 and 5 first (possibly releasing them as a single game), because those are the games most relevant to 7's backstory and also because original release order. Zero would come immediately after.
Hopefully AC3 will eventually get the remaster treatment as well, but as I understand it that would be the most complex game by a significant margin to redo.
The games have stories, although they're usually fairly short & simple war stories (i.e. don't expect a visual novel or JRPG, or complex plots). Though within those bounds, I think they're pretty good.
In-universe chronological order of the Strangereal games, not counting minor conflicts shown only in subgames (e.g. AC5's Arcade Mode):
Air Combat/Ace Combat Zero: The Belkan War (1995)
Ace Combat 2 (1997-1998)
Ace Combat 04: Shattered Skies (2003-05)
Ace Combat 5: The Unsung War (2010)
Ace Combat 6: Fires of Liberation (2015-16)
Ace Combat 7: Skies Unknown (2019)
Ace Combat X: Skies of Deception (2020)
Ace Combat 3: Electrosphere (2040)
The real-world games (Infinity, Joint Assault, Assault Horizon) all take place in their own universes and do not have continuity with other Ace Combat games.
RL game release order: see Ace Combat
No votes for AH? Good, no-one's getting solitary'd tonight
Stack Exchange says the eyes are RWR sensors. Unsure what the mouth is for
The first time I played the mission, I thought an AI had taken over Mother Goose One and was using it to bodyblock incoming missiles launched at the elevator, like the UAVs had...
Right now (given that the wiki seems to be going with the assumption that Harling was piloting the craft) I'm figuring that he thought the IUN/Osean military was trying to destroy the elevator and decided to use his aircraft as a human shield thing, since they wouldn't fire on him.
Although in that case, it's awfully convenient that the Osprey's communications were out such that he couldn't just order them off. (Johnson had a working radio at the moment of his death, why couldn't Harling use that?)
More importantly, F-22 is prettier than YF-23 with its V-tail degeneracy