Landing Airplanes In Flan’s Mod
When thinking about mods that add vehicles into Minecraft, the legendary Flan’s Mod is the king of the hill. Cars, trucks, tanks, airplanes, helicopters, full-scale battle mechs… no other mod adds nearly as many types of new vehicles.
But Flan’s mod does have a few issues — you might even call them problems — that can leave your desk with several face-shaped dents. The airplanes are awesome when all you want to do is takeoff and fly around. They’re also great for dogfighting and bombing ground targets. But what if you actually want to land your airplane and use it again later? Well… that’s where we run into some trouble.
Landing airplanes in Flan’s Mod is pretty obnoxious at first. It takes some practice, and you should definitely be prepared to lose a few airplanes in the process. That’s why I strongly recommend creating a new game world, giving yourself creative mode, Setting that world to peaceful and superflat, and then practicing everything we’re going to talk about here until you’re comfortable doing it in your main world or on your server.
The Bullet Points
Here’s the gist of what we’ll talk about in this article. I’ll go into great detail all throughout the article, but this is here for quick reference and for those of you who are probably a little too impatient to be flying airplanes in the first place (grin):
- Build a runway. It should be at least ten blocks wide and 200 blocks long
Write down the coordinates at both ends of the runway, or set waypoints with JourneyMap
- Start your approach when you’re 1000 blocks away and at least 170y to 200y in altitude
- Go into third-person (F5)
- Slow your plane down (S key). Watch for the plane to look like it’s coming closer to you
When the plane starts coming closer, stop slowing down
- Continue your approach. Use F3 and watch your altitude (y coordinate). Point your nose upward if you’re descending too quickly
- After you land, press and hold S to slow and then stop. Keep holding until the plane is fully stopped!
- Press R and check to see how much damage you took during your landing, if any. Repair all damage and refuel before you fly again!
Runways & Airports
If we’re going to do some flying, we should probably build an airport, yeah? Let’s talk about airports and how they’ll work.
In order to safely takeoff and land, you’re going to want to build at least one runway. Your runway should be at least 10 blocks wide and 200 blocks long, especially if you’re building on a server, where new pilots might attempt to land.
You’ll want to make sure you leave plenty of empty space around your runways. Keep those areas clear of buildings, tall grass, flowers, and trees, especially at the long ends of your runways, where planes will usually be flying low during their approach. Tall grass, flowers, and trees can and will harm your airplane, so try to give yourself plenty of open space.
Once your runway is built, write down the coordinates at both ends of the runway. You’ll want to write them down for centers at each end, lengthwise. This way, you’ll know where to find the runway, and you’ll also know which direction to fly in during landing. If you’re using a mod like JourneyMap, I recommend setting up waypoints at each end of each runway, and clearly labeling them (town name or airport code, and then the runway number).
Fun Fact: Real-life airports number their runways so pilots know what direction the runway is facing while landing. They do this using the first two digits of the angle the airport is facing. North is runway 36 (for 360, instead of 0/ zero), East is runway 09 (090), South is runway 18 (180). and West is runway 27 (270). It doesn’t work as well using Minecraft headings, so you may want to just use the real-world system.
Landing Your Airplane
First, head to a safe altitude (your height from the ground), and make sure you’re a safe distance from the runway. For beginner pilots, I strongly recommend being at least 1000 blocks away from the runway and at an altitude of around 170y to 200y. This should give you plenty of time to line up straight, reduce your speed properly, and glide in for a safe landing.
Once you’re lined up, it’s time to reduce your speed. This is difficult in Flan’s Mod because they rather inexplicably left out an airspeed indicator (speedometer), but no worries… we’ve got you covered!
Go into third-person view mode (F5). You’ll see that your plane is pretty far from you. It should look like this:
As soon as the plane looks like it’s coming closer, stop slowing down. You don’t want to come in too slowly, or you’ll drop awkwardly and crash.
Now, just glide toward the runway. Be mindful of how much altitude you’re losing, and try to point the nose of the plane up if you’re dropping too quickly. You want to descend slowly enough that you won’t damage the plane, but quickly enough that you don’t overshoot the runway and miss. Try to keep your descent reasonably slow and gentle.
When you’re able to see the runway, you should be able to tell if you’re too high or too low. Just remember to be patient. You don’t want to rush your landing. It’s better to have to speed up, pass over the runway, and take a second shot at landing, than to crash and have to rebuild your plane. If you have landing gear up, you should lower it now (L key for landing gear).
Now just calmly, smoothly land. Don’t try to force the tires down onto the runway. Just let the plane come down on its own, and make small adjustments to your pitch (where the nose is pointing) until you’ve landed. Once your wheels are down, hold S until the plane comes to a stop. Piece of cake!
After landing, press the R key and check your damage. More often than not, your plane will suffer some degree of damage during your landing. This damage usually happens to either wheels or the airplane core, and it’s perfectly normal. The more damage you did to the plane, the more carefully you should try landing next time.
Be sure to repair any and all damage and fully refuel your plane before you fly again, even if you’re confident in your flying ability, or if you’re only going on a short trip. Repairing an airplane is a heck of a lot cheaper than building a new one from scratch!
Airplane Config Files
If you feel like you’re landing perfectly each time but you’re still taking too much damage during your landings, you might want to consider strengthening your planes in their config files. This is for advanced users only. You don’t want to mess around and break your plane, so be careful while attempting this!
Important note: Some content creators are not cool with you altering their configs. Please ask for permission from the content creator before altering configs, especially if you’re including their content in a mod pack!
Navigate to your .minecraft/ Flan folder and find the jar file containing your airplane. Open it up with WinRAR or some other archive program. You should find a folder in there called “Planes.” Open that up.
Here, you can see all sorts of info for your airplane, and you can adjust just about everything, from max speed to handling, to how weapons work. Scroll down until you find the “SetupPart” section. Each of those lines is followed by the name of the part, and then a bunch of numbers.
That first number in that line? That’s the damage your plane can take in that section. By increasing that number by a bunch, you’ll make that part stronger, thereby preventing it from taking lots of damage during a landing.
Here’s the “CoreWheel” line of code for the biplane from the Ye Olde Pack before I altered it:
SetupPart coreWheel 20 0 -15 -7 4 8 14
And here it is after I altered it:
SetupPart coreWheel 2000 0 -15 -7 4 8 14
I simply multiplied the wheel’s health by 100, so it’s 100 times stronger and easier to land. But note that if you strengthen a plane too much, it’ll become invincible in air combat, and nobody wants that.
That’s pretty much it! Hopefully, with this guide and lots of practice, you’ll be landing your airplanes like a total boss in no time. If you need any help, feel free to leave a comment below and I’ll try to help as best I can!