1 - Secure the Upper Hand
Speed – The pilot of the faster machines has the control in combat. You can choose to break the attack and leave the field if you feel inclined to do so.
Altitude – A pilot with higher altitude has much more control of how and when combat will begin. Diving upon opponents can give you a sizable advantage in speed.
Surprise – Getting the first shot before your opponent is prepared is the most preferred form of attack.
Performance – Knowing the strengths, weaknesses and capabilities of your aircraft – and those of your foe - is key.
2 - Follow Through
Staying in the fight and “mixing it up” with the enemy increases your chances of survival. Wait for your enemy to make a mistake or flee and then you can break off the engagement.
3 - The Whites of Their Eyes
Opening fire at 1km or more is essentially useless and you have very little chance of actually hitting your opponent. It is much better to wait until you are within 100-200m until opening fire. This is also important because, although you have “unlimited” ammunition in-game, you still have reloading time… and if you are caught in the middle of an engagement reloading, you are essentially a sitting duck.
4 - Keep Your Eye on the Target
Additionally, do not fall for any simple feign tactics. Try to maintain position behind your opponent and even if it seems they are out of the fight, continue attacking until you are sure that you have defeated them. This also leads to the next point…