A cruise missile is a missile that is guided and powered from launch all the way to its target. They do not rely solely on gravity as ballistic missiles do; instead, their engine(s) remain attached at all times and they use aerodynamics to reach their targets. They support a variety of warheads, including conventional and nuclear warheads.
Cruise missiles in the Ace Combat franchise normally appear in large groups. They tend to have long range but a slow flight speed.
Cruise missiles can be fired from various launch platforms. Aircraft that have carried cruise missiles include the B-1B Lancer, B-2A Spirit, Rafale M, and the Aigaion-class heavy command cruiser. Ground vehicles and naval vessels have also carried cruise missiles.
Ace Combat Infinity and Ace Combat 7: Skies Unknown featured the Land Attack Cruise Missile special weapon on select aircraft, allowing the player to fire cruise missiles towards ground targets with a wide area of effect and powerful damage.
The Dragonet-class submarines carried cruise missiles, each carrying multiple warheads, during the Usean coup d'état. Despite being referred to repeatedly as submarine-launched ballistic missiles, the missiles were powered throughout their flight and never used ballistic trajectories, making them cruise missiles.
Erusea's armed forces launched a volley of cruise missiles towards the Independent State Allied Forces during the late stages of the Continental War. The cruise missiles targeted ISAF ground troops performing a landing operation in Ice Creek. Mobius 1 shot down all of the cruise missiles, allowing the troops to land and relinquish the northern coast from Erusean control.
Estovakia deployed two types of cruise missiles during the Emmeria-Estovakia War. The first was the Nimbus missile, a large cruise missile carried by the P-1112 Aigaion. These missiles were guided by Marker Drone UAVs to strike their targets. The second type was the Chandelier cruise missile, which were carried in multitudes within special shells fired from the Chandelier. All of these cruise missiles were destroyed by the Republic of Emmeria Air Force.
Cruise missiles were used twice during the Lighthouse War: once in a failed attempt by the Alicorn's aerial squadron to strike a civilian center, and once at the end of the war in a failed attempt by an Osean-Erusean coalition to shoot down one of the Arsenal Birds. In the latter scenario, cruise missiles were fired from multiple bomber aircraft and naval vessels.
Assault Horizon universe
- Mission 19: "Lighthouse", Ace Combat 7: Skies Unknown.
- Mission 06: "White Bird (Part I)", Ace Combat 5: The Unsung War.
- SP Mission 01: "Unexpected Visitor", Ace Combat 7: Skies Unknown.
- Mission 01: "Invasion of Gracemeria", Ace Combat 6: Fires of Liberation.
- Mission 12C: "Wild Card", Ace Combat X: Skies of Deception.
- Mission 14: "Breaking Arrows", Ace Combat 04: Shattered Skies.
- Mission 07: "Selumna Peak", Ace Combat 6: Fires of Liberation.
- Mission 08: "San Loma Assault", Ace Combat 6: Fires of Liberation.
- Mission 14: "Gracemeria Patrol", Ace Combat 6: Fires of Liberation.