Recent air combat sim recommendations?


Buttons are for sissies…engine, stick, throttle, gun.


To each their own. I have time for neither :sadface: #kids


Which button blips the engine?


The main appeal of WW1 and WW2 for me is the lack of buttons. I have no patience to learn buttons. I just want to shoot things. ;) I’m curious how long I can survive with Mr. Gruber in that death trap I started in. I think I’m way more likely to crash and die than get shot down. Hell on my first takeoff I didn’t know it banked hard to the right and almost died right there. :)


Yeah I was into the WW1 / 2 stuff for a long time but in recent years the more modern stuff has been what holds my attention. And that’s just a 747, not even a combat plane. It’s just there’s no non combat flight sim thread so I sorta feel orphaned onto this one every time I start goofing around with my simulator :P


The best way to turn those early war aircraft are to jump out, and then twist the entire fuselage from behind. “Banking with intent to turn” (an F-104 chestnut) describes them perfectly.

This. I actually had a pretty good time playing with the old AOTP a couple of days ago.


Wow, what made ya load up that old chestnut?


I have to pay my respects to my roots every once in a while, or I get all itchy.


Don’t worry, Eric. These guys present a stiff upper lip, but secretly they all want to press the APU GEN2 button.

It’s right there waiting to be pushed.


Is that the button that makes the gin come out?


There has been exactly one time in my life when I was interested in switchology.

I believe I was six or seven. I would flip cardboard boxes over, color them up with crayons, and pretend they were spaceship control panels. I cut “buttons” into the boxes to press in any order that my imagination dictated.

I believe six years in nuclear propulsion killed any remaining interest I had in locking myself down to long, tedious procedures for the sake of long, tedious procedures.


Do flight simulators even map functions to all of the buttons in cockpits? I’ve flown some bigger planes in X-Plane, and I remember being disappointed that so few of the objects on the dashboard were interactive (not that I’d know what they did even if I could press them).

We should start one, dammit.


DCS does, for nearly all functions. Expect to spend 10 minutes pressing, flipping, and twiddling things before you even start taxiing. :)

I love this kind of thing, learning real start-up procedures for complicated machinery.


Sounds like I should be trying DCS. Can I have an okay time with the free-to-play version on Steam?



The only super-detailed aircraft which comes in the free version is the TF-51, the unarmed P-51 trainer. The Su-25T is near the top of the middle-depth flight sims, where you have to learn a lot of keystrokes without the benefit of actual switches.

If you’re looking for the greatest amount of switch-throwing and the widest array of procedures, the A-10C is probably your bird. Otherwise, just go for one of the in-depth aircraft (everything except the A-10A, Su-25 and Su-25T, Su-27/33, MiG-29, and F-15) which strikes your fancy. Or, if you like the idea generally but aren’t entirely sold on military aircraft, you can find similarly full-fidelity civilian aircraft for FSX and/or Prepar3d, from third-party vendors.


The default planes no. But this is $135 addon payware :P It simulates every system and switch very accurately :)


I think I’m starting to understand the high price tags some of the payware planes command. I’ve stayed away from them because I had just assumed the experience would be similar to the out-of-the-box planes. It would appear my assumption was wrong.

I’ll give DCS a try this weekend.


It’s a thing of beauty!

Yeah, they’re not small or simple undertakings. Here’s part 1 of the startup training mission to give you a taste. :)


I’ve been digging into the Viggen of late. Fewer switches, but I’m loving the speed and excitement. Which is weird, because I’m usually a helicopters guy.