Start a game with the param -cool and you’ll get unlimited lives!
Pilots and aces:
You can choose a bunch of pilots and turn them into aces, then they
gain more accuracy and it’s easier to acomplish missions, when they
reach full ace status , rotate pilots and use the others to give the
aces a rest, but built a squadron with at least one ace. An ace can
in most cases be the difference in a dogfight, but use them wisely.