Recent air combat sim recommendations?


Wow that’s unfortunate, I was in the HMD for over 3 hours last night without breaking a sweat! I find it much more comfortable than terrestrial sims so I can’t imagine how you’d go there.



I want this on a T-shirt now


Holy wow, I got IL-2 running on the Oculus. They did such a good job with this! The sharpening makes for the most readable instruments I’ve seen, and the scenery just looks amazing. And it’s silky smooth.

Haven’t flown combat yet, but just cruising around in the planes, it’s flight sim nirvana.


I am close to getting me a CV1. Posts like yours make the wait that much harder }-(

Il2 much better than DCS then? I heard that tends to get choppy at times.


I cant compare with DCS but IL-2 with oculus is now the best earth based flight sim experience I have played. Its just AMAZINGLY immersive. You get the sense of a real battlefield and the cockpit is done so well.

Once I turned down my settings to medium all choppiness went away. The high settings I got some irregular frame stuttering which I couldn’t handle.

But it really is like OMFG level of immersion.


There needs to be a QT3 server so we can do some missions together. Or at least upload some videos! ;)


This is a good idea :)


Which version of IL-2 are we talking about? The old 1946 patch with everything or the newer one? If it’s the new one I’ve never actually played it. But I’m very familiar with flight sims and WWII stuff, so I don’t think it would be too bad. I remember IL-2 servers back in the day that had missions meant specifically for multiplayer, with an array of airbases for the red and blue teams. You could pick an airfield to spawn at, pick a plane, a loadout, etc. All that could be restricted based on the scenario/airfield/etc. So the server would run the map for let’s say 2 hours, and each side had targets to bomb and a limited number of planes of each type and that sort of thing. If we had enough people something like that could be fun. I sorta suspect there’s not that much interest though. Damn nostalgia. :P


I am playing the new battle for moscow/stalingrad version. Apparently the multiplayer stuff is really good but I have not tried it yet.


@Eric_Majkut, yeah, it’s Battle of Stalingrad/Battle of Moscow. Which is a whole new game in the series with a modern graphics engine.

BTW, on a GeForce 1080, I can run with the graphics on Ultra and sharpening on and it’s silky-smooth.

I need to troubleshoot DCS. It’s smooth in general, but gets these one-second hitches where the sim just freezes and when it comes back it’s buffered up all my input, so the plane can go wonky.


Not in VR surely? Certainly not with the HUD info overlay turned on, which drains frames in a torrential fashion! ;) What level AA? Do you use the dynamic res setting? The scenery detail multiplier?

I settled on High, no distant scenery multiplier, 2XAA. Not sure what method the AA is using, or that it even works that well but 4X seemed to hit me right in the performance.

Using .8 dynamic res so it at least stays smooth when the HUD gets turned on, figuring I’m mostly checking the map anyway so blurrier scenery/closer draw distance is acceptable whilst its open. The Rift Async Spacewarp feature seems to be working, even though the game runs via SteamVR (I can see it lock down from 90 to 45 fps occasionally) but it’s still smoother with variable res active as well.

I do wish there were some actual graphics options beyond those presets so we had a bit more control. Not sure of the difference between High and Ultra but generally in VR I’ve found Ultra to be overkill - usually worth spending frames on AA or supersampling instead.

In general it does run very well though and feels great to fly, but like DCS things get a bit sketchier when low amongst the buildings.

DCS runs similarly well for me these days, though this is the v2 beta using Nevada. Have yet to try the old 1.5 Crimea map on my updated PC. DCS always started to bog down when adding more foes, it’s pretty heavy on the CPU - IL2 does seem better in this regard.

The IL2 map is nicer at height, great view distance, lots of vegetation (though camera-facing branches are obvious in VR), sharp features like rivers and roads, great atmospherics. I think the audio is better as well.

(Btw I’ve been testing in what looked to be the most performance intensive map area in a quick mission here)

Click for pic


Come the next version of the headsets, I am in.


These are my settings. Core i7-7700K, 32GB RAM, Win 10 Creator’s Update, GeForce 1080. I haven’t run a frame-rate counter on it, but it feels smooth, no hitches or noticeable frame rate drops in the action. I’ve only flown it a little over an hour and not in campaign, but in free flight and single missions, it’s solid.

Note that I haven’t messed with any Nvidia settings like supersampling, etc. All that’s at default.

I tend to run with the HUD off except when checking the map, using target markers instead. That’s still the big limitation in VR sims – in real life, you can do a “mental zoom” and focus on a ground object. In the game, it remains a few pixels in size, so you have to use target markers and other visual cheats.


My hardware is the same, except with a 1080ti. I’m also using the default Nvidia settings and a fresh install of Creators update. I’ve only flown in that one quick mission I illustrated, and it definitely struggles at those settings of yours in that map area at least. Not terribly, but noticeably.

Weirdly, my target FPS is greyed out at ‘100’, not ‘60’, even with the dynamic res slider down a few notches.

You can press ‘backspace’ for the in-game frame counter btw.

edit: also try the Moscow/Ship Bombing mission, see how that runs at the start.


Okay, plunked down 50 bucks thanks to the recs here for IL2 in VR and holy cow it’s pretty amazing.

Performance seems good on my 1080 (and an older CPU). Have it at high for now. It’s plenty pretty, and no hitches. Are they doing some super-sampling by default in VR? Everything seems pretty crisp.

I’m disappointed that I can’t set a joystick button as a shift/toggle to get multiple options out of each of my controls (ala Elite). There’s a ton of controls, so I guess I need to sort out what are the viable minimum I need assuming engine management and such is off.

My takeoffs are a joke, but the first time I got in the air I am pretty sure the theme from Rocketeer was playing. The immersion is pretty incredible. Being able to open up the canopy and then lean out to gauge the edge of the runway is amazing. I made a hard landing in a forest, and I just sat there for a minute listening to the birds, checking out the bullet holes in m y plane, and looking at the trees (very low-res, but impressive scale).

I also suck at hitting things, but hopefully I will get back up to speed in time. I wasn’t that bad with the original IL2. I find the reflector sight pretty hard to see in most situations, but I can’t describe how it feels to have to focus on the reflector sight instead of everything being a flat 2d image like I’m used to.

Anyway … gosh. It’s really impressive. The Rise of Flight guys did this version, right? Seems like the same engine. Can they please enable VR in RoF? I would give my left kidney for that.


Yeah weirdly no native support for modifiers outside of the keyboard, so I just set my pinkie switch to ‘Left Shift’ in the controller software instead.

That’d be great but I’m not sure they can, as RoF may be using an older DirectX? I recall that being the reason they gave for the delayed support in IL-2 in the first place.


@profanicus, the Target FPS difference is probably due to difference in our monitors. Mine tops out at 60Hz.

Got the FPS counter up. Depending on the map/mission, I either have a rock-solid 90 fps (snowy, barren maps) or a rock-solid 45 fps (urban areas with a lot of units around). Weirdly, the 45 fps display doesn’t feel noticeably different in the goggles – I’m assuming that ASW is filling in the gaps.

Are you using a G-Sync monitor or something? I’m wondering if that could be affecting your framerates, since it doesn’t sound like your experience is as smooth as mine.


I am using a Gsync monitor yes, but running the Oculus client disables the Gsync. The monitor does still run at 165Hz, so maybe I should try turning it down to 60. Not sure how mirroring from the HMD works with monitor frequency.

Or maybe I’m overly sensitive to frame rates? When the game is running at 45 and frames are being filled by ASW, I can often clearly see the artefacts caused by the interpolation. Did you try that Ship Attack mission? That one is quite bad for me at the start. I can’t even get it off the ground lol… :)


Ordered rift today. In peparation I installed and tweaked il2. Even with the DK2 its amazing! I am in fucking love again

Here’s some tweaks for y’all: