The DCS thread; Raid's War Stories (image heavy)

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Re: The DCS thread; Raid's War Stories (image heavy)

Postby Raid » Mon May 23, 2016 9:30 pm

Would it surprise anyone reading this thread that in fifty or more attempts, I'd never actually finished a real mission in DCS? Practically every time I've ever gone up against actual opponents (aircraft or air defences), I've been shot down. Well tonight I finally sodding did it. The mission started in the air, so I didn't actually take off, but I flew to the target area, I killed the targets I was supposed to kill, I found the landing FARP (Forward Arming and Refuelling Point - basically a flat bit with some landing pads) using the navigation system, steered my way to it, and landed. In the goddamn Ka-50 - the Black Shark; the helicopter that tries to kill its own pilot every time he touches a flight control. I still don't even have my rudder pedals (they're arriving on wednesday); I was using a small slider on the throttle unit to (barely) control something that's essential to helicopter flight. Hell, I still only have a vague understanding of how helicopters actually do anything but hover anyway.

I am so proud of myself right now. I'll try and get some images tomorrow.

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Re: The DCS thread; Raid's War Stories (image heavy)

Postby Raid » Thu Jun 02, 2016 6:18 pm

I never did get around to grabbing any images from that mission, largely because it wasn't very exciting visually. I'm actually considering putting a video montage together instead, following my helicopter shenanigans.

So VR happened, and it's pretty damned amazing in DCS. Despite the fact that my computer can't seem to manage more than 25fps of the required 90 half the time, it's perfectly playable because of Oculus' ASW software. I've also discovered that there's a set of Voice Attack scripts for communicating with the AI, which is handy because a) you can't read the comms menu in VR, b) you can't see your keyboard in VR, and c) you'd need to bind at least 12 different key commands to your HOTAS to get it to work. I've only gotten used to the basic wingman commands so far, but holding one button and saying "two, attack air defenses" is so much simpler than pressing \,F2,F4,F4 when you're trying to keep a helicopter from crashing.

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Re: The DCS thread; Raid's War Stories (image heavy)

Postby sohei » Wed Sep 07, 2016 3:19 pm

I too am now even more in love with DCS since my Rift arrived. I'll do a mission in a week or so and post some pics of my own.
I do get shot down quite a lot, usually when I start getting overconfident and insist on making a sketchy pass at a ZSU, which then guns me into the ground.
I have managed a couple of missions that I've survived, however. I'm particularly proud of the time I destroyed my targets but lost an engine in a blizzard of SAMs, but still managed to land at a nearby airfield with my ILS, bang on the centre line!
DCS is easily my most rewarding gaming experience, and with the headset my interest in other games has waned considerably. Can't wait to get back in there!
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Re: The DCS thread; Raid's War Stories (image heavy)

Postby Raid » Wed Sep 07, 2016 6:36 pm

It's surprising how entertaining limping back to base on one engine can be, isn't it, particularly when your MFDs have failed and you have to navigate back via compass and then find the airstrip visually. I've managed it a few times, and while I can put the plane down on the centreline, I usually end up veering off the runway onto the grass before I can bring it to a halt.

Which modules do you own?

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Re: The DCS thread; Raid's War Stories (image heavy)

Postby sohei » Sun Sep 11, 2016 6:01 am

I have the a10c, black shark 2, su27 and f15. I also have dcs 2.0 nttr. Tbh I find the a10c so utterly satisfying that I very rarely bother with the other modules. I may indulge in the mirage 2k, but there are so many upcoming modules which really interest me I'm not sure I want to commit to a steep learning curve just yet. The f18 really tickles my fancy.
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Re: The DCS thread; Raid's War Stories (image heavy)

Postby Raid » Sun Sep 11, 2016 10:19 am

Seems we have similar tastes; I have Nevada, the A-10C, Ka-50, P-51D (when they offered it at £5 due to a pricing error) and Mirage 2000. I am similarly excited for the F/A-18, as well as the F-14.

I do rather like the Mirage, but then it's the only fast jet I own. I'm aware that it's a less capable air-supremacy platform than the F-15 thanks to its small and less advanced payload, but I much prefer the clickable cockpits of the DCS-level modules over the keybinds of the FC3 aircraft.

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Re: The DCS thread; Raid's War Stories (image heavy)

Postby sohei » Mon Sep 12, 2016 1:53 pm

Yeah, you can't beat the immersion of a fully clickable cockpit, plus it saves a shedload of time sorting out your mappings and working out which ones are important and which can be disregarded or mapped to less accessible areas of the HOTAS.

When they release the Harrier I may well sell all of my clothes and non-sim belongings, and live the rest of my days sat in my pants on planet DCS, experiencing perfect happiness.
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Re: The DCS thread; Raid's War Stories (image heavy)

Postby Raid » Mon Sep 12, 2016 5:31 pm

If you ever fancy trying multiplayer, give me a shout. Every server I've tried prevents you from using things like object enlargement (which I find necessary for locating ground targets in VR), so it'd be nice to be playing with someone who has the same advantages and constraints as I do.

Also, just scored my first A-A guns kill in the A-10. I know Hinds are known as flying tanks, but jeeze, I hit him a good three or four times with 30mm depleted uranium shells before he went down, whereas he took out my left engine on his first pass. The git. Still, limped around for a few more passes and eventually blew at least one of his engines off and took off his wings, before he finally crashed.

into me.

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Re: The DCS thread; Raid's War Stories (image heavy)

Postby Raid » Sat Sep 17, 2016 6:46 pm

Turns out that accidentally shooting down your wingman means that you forfeit all of your combat scores. In my defense, a Mirage 2000 looks a lot like a MiG 29 at 10 miles, and I'm pretty sure not using the IFF function because "I didn't have time, damnit!" is a pretty good defense.

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Re: The DCS thread; Raid's War Stories (image heavy)

Postby sohei » Sun Sep 18, 2016 8:59 pm

Raid wrote:If you ever fancy trying multiplayer, give me a shout. Every server I've tried prevents you from using things like object enlargement (which I find necessary for locating ground targets in VR), so it'd be nice to be playing with someone who has the same advantages and constraints as I do.

Also, just scored my first A-A guns kill in the A-10. I know Hinds are known as flying tanks, but jeeze, I hit him a good three or four times with 30mm depleted uranium shells before he went down, whereas he took out my left engine on his first pass. The git. Still, limped around for a few more passes and eventually blew at least one of his engines off and took off his wings, before he finally crashed.

into me.



I was playing one of the randomly generated missions to work on my JTAC skills. I had taken out a T80 and was coming around for another pass when my port wing suddenly disintegrated and the plane started to break up around me! I managed to eject with a few hundred feet to spare. Later analysis in Tacview showed a mi28 gunning me down with pinpoint precision. :( Even with the Rift I need to really pay more attention to situational awareness!

It was still awesome though, especially landing by parachute on a winter battlefield and trudging through the snow, watching as a column of T72s thundered past me.

8)
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Re: The DCS thread; Raid's War Stories (image heavy)

Postby sohei » Sun Sep 18, 2016 9:00 pm

Raid wrote:Turns out that accidentally shooting down your wingman means that you forfeit all of your combat scores. In my defense, a Mirage 2000 looks a lot like a MiG 29 at 10 miles, and I'm pretty sure not using the IFF function because "I didn't have time, damnit!" is a pretty good defense.



Lack of IFF use brings out the rage in a few members of the DCS page I frequent on FB, lol.
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Re: The DCS thread; Raid's War Stories (image heavy)

Postby Raid » Sun Sep 18, 2016 10:00 pm

Heh, yeah, I've got some practice to do before I join a proper multiplayer server. It actually turned out I was mistaking the radar symbology when using the IFF interrogator, meaning even if I had used it that time, I'd still have shot down a friendly. And speaking of practice....

This is the Dassault Mirage 2000C, a lightweight, 4th generation interceptor that flew with the French air force from 1982, and is being replaced with the more modern Rafale. Today I'm carrying two Matra Super 530D short-medium range semi-active radar guided missiles and two R550 Magic II short-range heat-seekers.
Image

This is the Mikoyan-Gurevich MiG-21bis, NATO reporting name "Fishbed"; the AK-47 of jet aircraft. Produced from the 50s onwards, it still serves in a number of air forces around the world, including North Korea and Syria. This is a 2nd generation fighter, and is considered woefully outdated, though it can still be deadly in the right hands. There are a total of 6 MiGs to our 4 M2000s.
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I scan the airspace over the Nevada testing grounds.
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Look, targets!
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I lock one up. Fox 1!
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Splash one!
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Still, plenty more Fishbeds in the sea. Chortle.
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I follow one of his wingmen down towards the deck, pulling what was in retrospect a rather silly maneuver to get a Magic lock.
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Fox 2!
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This is Bogdan. Bogdan is currently having his life flash before his eyes and is not available for comment.
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The missile missed! Bogdan must be breathing a sigh of relief. No matter, I hit the burner and close to gun range.
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Oh Bogdan, you're not going to lose me by dumping flares.
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See?
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Think about your mistake as you float to the ground. I hope you brought sandwiches and something to drink, it's an awfully long walk back to 'Vegas.
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My wingmen have taken down another couple of the MiGs, but it's not entirely one-sided. We're a man down too, as this missile launch suggests.
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Not that I'm sitting around waiting for them to catch up, mind you. Fox 2! Splash 3!
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I start to look up the TACAN frequency for Nellis AFB for my flight home when I notice a ping on my Radar Warning Receiver.
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The last MiG heroically charges our three-ship formation.
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He has guts, I'll give him that.
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Unfortunately I've got both guts and a radar-guided gunsight. All I need to do is place that partial circle over the MiG and squeeze the trigger.
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Bogdan will be delighted to have some company on his way home.
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"Nyet. Now I never get medal."
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I've only recently started putting any significant amount of time into the M2000C, and now that I'm getting the hang of operating the radar it's proving to be an exceptionally fun little aircraft. Fighting MiG-21s isn't really a good test of its abilities, but sadly the rather limited weapons load (a maximum of two missiles with a range of 10-15 miles and two short range infra-reds, and only 250 rounds between the two guns) means it's less of a match for the more modern Russian fighters currently in the game. The module isn't feature complete yet either, as it lacks some defensive features - it currently won't tell you when there's been a missile launched at you, which is a pretty big issue.

Still, it's amazing fun to fling around, and very forgiving, while still being powerful enough to explore the airspace that the A-10 only dreams of operating in. It's also the only full fidelity 4th gen aircraft available at the moment (the others are Flaming Cliffs models, without clickable cockpits and simplified avionics). It serves as an excellent teaser for the two big US 4th gen fighters (F-14A/B and F/A-18) coming within the next year.

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Re: The DCS thread; Raid's War Stories (image heavy)

Postby sohei » Mon Sep 19, 2016 12:52 pm

What a fantastic read, proper Boys Own stuff! :D

I've spent the last few days wondering why I was unable to contact JTAC, assuming I was doing something wrong with the radios. A bit more experimentation revealed that it was the F4 key on my keyboard which is now defunct, d'oh! #-o

No JTAC for two days until the replacement arrives. I'll use the time to work on my countermeasures, handling the RWR etc. I still get a bit panicky and uncertain when that thing makes funny noises and flashes at me!
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Re: The DCS thread; Raid's War Stories (image heavy)

Postby Raid » Mon Sep 19, 2016 6:02 pm

I'm getting better at deciphering the RWR in the A-10. Countermeasures though? As soon as I think there's a missile in the air, I just start the countermeasures program and activate the jammer. My chances of survival multiply exponentially when I can see where the missile is coming from though, so I do tend to practically shake the Rift from my face trying to spot it when I have one fired at me from an unexpected angle. Things like Manpads and the missiles fired by lesser air defence vehicles are fairly easy to simply avoid, but I'm not sure I've ever managed that with a radar SAM.

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Re: The DCS thread; Raid's War Stories (image heavy)

Postby sohei » Tue Sep 20, 2016 12:30 pm

I had some fun yesterday evening with CM. I first did the training mission for CM to refresh my memory. I then generated a fast mission with no fighters but lots of everything else. While I was a setting up my CM profile to include some flares (be aware that the default profiles A and B only drop chaff!) there was an alarm from the MWS and almost immediately afterwards a loud bang indicated something had found me. I cast my eyes around and spied an SU17 bearing down me with another missile being launched. I tried to maneuvre and launch CM but it was already too late. I took another missile hit and he even had time to come round and hit me with guns, finishing the plane off for good.
On the plus side I ejected and then enjoyed watching the remainder of the battle from the ground, with SAMs and AAA taking out my attacker and his wingmen while Apaches swooped past!
I did the same mission a few more times and eventually got much faster at setting up my CM, activating jammer and CM and maneuvering evasively when a launch was detected. I even got the chance at a very quick guns pass at an SU17 flying a couple of thousand feet below me, but the AAA took him out before my rounds closed on him.
God I love this sim.

I'm currently waiting for VKB to release their Gunfighter stick and extension with the Warthog adapter. That way I can use my Warthog handle on a long stick with the Gunfighter gimbals to give a really accurate and smooth control system. No more silly axis curves to compensate for the short stick length!
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