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"America...I didn't expect to come home like this."
Burford

Desert Gust is one of the final missions in Ace Combat: Joint Assault. Players are tasked with destroying part of the Golden Axe Plan forces at an abandoned airport in Nevada.

In single-player, the player must complete this mission and Ghost Hunt before the final battle in San Francisco. In multiplayer, this mission is completed simultaneous with Ghost Hunt, and all players advance afterward to the final mission.

Briefing

Burford: Our objective is to wipe out the Golden Axe Plan's private army before they attack San Francisco. They have forces in an abandoned airport in the Sierra Mountains[2], and the Spiridus is near Lake Tahoe. The first prong of our attack will be the Golden Axe's private army at the airport. They have substantial military might, so this is going to be a fierce battle. Go in hot. Ground forces from Martinez Security are also aiding in our operation. Dog Bear, Lazy Bear and Black Bear will storm the airport once we achieve air superiority. Once they realize we're attacking the airport, the Spiridus will likely attempt support fire from Tahoe. It's going to be tough out there, but we have no other choice. Get to it, Antares Squad.

Objectives

Initial

During the first phase, the player has to defend three allied ground teams from enemy attack, starting from Dog Bear (nearest from player s starting position), Lazy Bear and finally Black Bear (farthest from player's starting point). As the mission commences, a squadron of enemy attacker aircrafts consisting of a pair of F-16XLs and an A-10 is moving to engage Dog Bear. Intercept them while taking out a couple of AA guns and launchers stationed between player's starting point and Dog Bear's position.

Once Dog Bear team launched their missile, a group of three tanks along with several AA guns, SAMs and a pair of Typhoons will appear close to Lazy Bear's position so get there and take them out. At this point, the Spiridus will launch long-range attacks periodically until the player completes the initial phase. As soon as Lazy Bear is cleared, another hostile tank group along with a pair of A-10s will attack Black Bear's position. If roughly 80% of enemy ground units (both regular and TGTs) have been destroyed up to this point, the named ace will spawn above the airport. Try to spare one A-10 before advancing to the next phase as the named pilot will disappear once this phase is finished.

Mission Update 1

Now to clear out the airport, the airport itself is heavily defended by AA guns and SAMs. There's also a large group of tanks, AAs and SAMs in the airport outskirts. Parked MiG-1.44s and a Su-47 are among primary targets as well, but they won't attempt to take off. Once the airport is secure, the final target is to take over the missile launcher slightly to the northeast of the airport which is guarded by a couple of AA guns and SAMs. Three hostile Apaches also joins the fray shortly after. A couple of MiG-1.44s will appear to the south of the airport as hostile reinforcements (regular enemies) should the player took to long to destroy all targets.

S-Rank

Clear the mission within 5 minutes 30 seconds or less

Named Aces

  • F-15 S/MTD Kelpie - Appears over the airport after most ground targets in the first part of the mission have been destroyed. Disappears in the Mission Update.

Debriefing

Burford: We've successfully dismantled the Golden Axe Plan's private army and taken back the airport. The hangars were loaded with parts, weapons and ammo. They'll be a big help prior to the final battle. Our next target is the aerial base stationed at Lake Tahoe. Prepare well for this one.

References

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 If this mission is played in single-player prior to Ghost Hunt, then the next mission will be Ghost Hunt. If this mission is played in multiplayer (Mission 19&20: Wrecking Ball), then the next mission will be Reprisal (21B).
  2. The English subtitles incorrectly state "an abandoned airport in Sierra Mountains".
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