This article is about an in-universe event. For the in-game mission, see Safe Return.
"This is Leopard. We're at Gnome Ravine. Visual flying in this fog is not possible. We need radar to get through."

Operation Blindman's Bluff was an escort and reconnaissance mission undertaken by the ISAF during the Continental War. ISAF ace Mobius 1 was dispatched on his second solo mission to clear Gnome Ravine of Erusean airship-mounted radar jammers, which were endangering the safe passage of a U-2 recon plane, callsign "Leopard".[1]


In early May, ISAF dispatched a recon plane to the west coast of Usea to gather intelligence regarding rumors of a second Erusean superweapon under development. After completing its reconnaissance mission, Leopard headed back to Allied territory. At some point, however, the U-2 developed engine troubles, limiting its max altitude. In order to cross central Usea's Lambert Mountains, Leopard would need to traverse Gnome Ravine, northwest of Los Canas. The Eruseans had strategically "mined" the mountain pass with airship-mounted radar jammers, which put low-flying aircraft, like Leopard, in immediate danger of crashing.[2]


ISAF ace Mobius 1 was dispatched on another solo mission to disable as many of the jammers as possible and clear the recon plane's radar. Despite being unable to destroy the airships with missiles, Mobius 1 successfully cleared enough of the jammers with his fighter's machine guns.[1]

However, a flight of four Erusean air-superiority fighters suddenly entered the airspace and attempted to shoot down the recon plane. Mobius 1 quickly engaged the Erusean fighters as Leopard slipped away into the foggy ravine. Once Mobius 1 had downed the last fighter, AWACS SkyEye confirmed that the airspace had been sanitized and Leopard made it through the pass.[1]


Despite engine troubles, Leopard returned safely to an ISAF air base. Analysis of the high-altitude surveillance photographs showed renewed activity at a facility in the Twinkle Islands, codenamed "Megalith". Although the facility's full capabilities remained unknown, ISAF command realized that the war needed to be brought to an end before this new superweapon could be activated.[3]


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 Safe Return, Ace Combat 04: Shattered Skies.
  2. Briefing, Safe Return, Ace Combat 04: Shattered Skies.
  3. Debriefing, Safe Return, Ace Combat 04: Shattered Skies.
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