Recent air combat sim recommendations?


Apparently there is a Syria map, and a Falkland Islands map being worked on for DCS.


… and a dynamic campaign game, and improvements to AI and unit damage states. Oh yes todays’ was a dozy.


I hope the Falkands map means a British carrier to take off from.


Eh that’s being made by Razbam. They have their hearts in the right place, but do tend to take a mite longer getting things finished than some others…


They made a bunch of announcements today regarding WIP.

I know lot’s of folks are pining for the dynamic campaign, but honestly don’t see that coming for a few years yet. I’m much more excited about the base stuff they announced as in progress (which the dynamic campaign will need anyway) such as:

Better AI
Optimized Performance
Optimized VR
Dedicated Server
Vulkans (I wonder if they will also include the starship Enterprise).


I just got an Oculus Rift. Any suggestions for an Oculus friendly flight simulator for someone who is a complete beginner at flight simulators. Could be a combat or civilian simulator (although I’d lean towards combat, unless you all think it would be better to start with a civilian simulator).


If you’re looking for combat I’d say go with Il-2: battle of stalingrad. You can pick it up on steam or buy it from the 777 studios webpage. You can set up progressively more difficult 1 on 1 air duels with enemy fighters. There is a bit of jank with il-2 for VR, like the menu system phasing in and out during loading, but once you’re in game and in the air it’s pretty good. You get a lot better performance if you turn off the HUD in game though, and you may need to read a guide on best settings for VR - you want to shoot for that sweet spot of 90 fps for maximum vr comfort. The il-2 forums have a section on VR and guides on getting good performance.

This channel (air combat school by requiem): will give you a lot of instructions on how to fly particular aircraft and how to land, etc.

If you’re interested in world war I flying there is also some options to use them in the il-2 engine however it’s still in early stages of development so you may want to wait for that to be better developed.

For civilian flight sims you may want to read reviews about this one:

I haven’t tried it myself so I don’t know how good it is.

Aerofly Fs2 could also be a good choice, especially if you just want to fly around beautiful mountains and stuff.


Be sure to tune il2 gameplay settings down a little too. Taking off or landing at max realism takes all the airmanship I learned over 30 years of simming.
I disagree with the 90 frames are absolutely necessary thing. 45 and async projection will do just fine.
You may also want to give DCS a try. This might sound strange but in a lot of ways modern jets are far easier to fly and fight in than old tailsitter propjobs.
Theres also war thunder, a free to play thing. I never managed to wrap my head round that one so…


Thanks guys. I noticed the IL2 Steam Page says VR mode requires use of keyboard and mouse. How does that work?


You interact with the menus with the mouse. It’s pretty easy to do in VR , you see a cursor after all and you’re moving your mouse normally. I don’t think keyboard is really necessary at all.

Once you get in game though, you’ll just be using your hotas.


Is it playable in VR without a HOTAS?


I guess you could use some kind of controller like an xbox 360 controller, although a cheap joystick at least is highly recommended. It may be technically possible to fly using some kind of keyboard or mouse input mechanism but I can’t imagine that would be very good.

Then again, when I was a kid I was pretty damn good at microsoft flight simulator with just the keyboard, but that was a different age =)


Congrats on the Oculus! It is an absolute revelation with flight simming. Mirroring both IL-2 and DCS for suggestions. DCS is free to download and comes with some pretty basic planes. I’d give that a go and start in the air. Just flying around in these things is incredible in VR. When you are ready to blow stuff up, you’ll know if it is too “simmy” for you without having to pay a dime.


I think DCS is a much better second or third sim, as much as I love it.

Aerofly FS2 is a great introduction. Lots of planes to try, great scenery in the populated areas (except the water), and flight models that feel good without being ridiculously challenging. Plus some more advanced planes that let you learn more advanced systems once you get up to speed. And its VR performance is excellent.


But can you drop 1000 pounders on ammo dumps in Aerofly FS2?

Ammo dumps are great. Secondaries for days! POL targets are cool too because they burn like a motherfucker, or dropping very smart cluster bombs on tank parks, but nothing feels like an ammo dump going up like the 4th of july when you score a direct hit on the bastard.


Easy there, Lt. Calley


Maybe when the F-16 or F-4 come out they will have the ability to load a B61.


Funny how one reaction makes me a bloodthirsty baby killer for enjoying the C in dcs, and the other dreams of even bigger, far more destructive bombs…

Mk-84 is big enough for me.


Personally I don’t need it, but if you are into big bangs, that is probably about the biggest one they can carry.


Thanks for the suggestions everyone. I picked up a copy of Aerofly and have a HOTAS setup coming in from Amazon in a few days. Currently flying around the Bay Area in a Cessna :-)

Any suggestions on things I should try in Aerofly to get myself ready to fly in DCS World? There is a set of flight instructor tasks which have been very helpful, but they’re very limited. Past that it’s basically make your own fun. I thought after getting comfortable with basic maneuvering and taking off and landing in different parts of the Bay Area, I’d lookup some basic combat maneuvers such as the Immelmann and Split-S and see if I could carry those out.

For DCS World is the suggestion for beginners to get a hold of some of the Flaming Cliff’s aircraft, since they’ve got simpler systems modeling, and then move to higher fidelity simulations?

Are WW2 era aircraft easier to deal with than modern fighters, since they’ve got less going on in the cockpit? I’m leaning towards targeting DCS World as a goal instead of Il-2 since I grew up reading about P-51s and P-38s followed by F-14s and am more interested in flying over Normandy than Stalingrad.