I decided to take a little tour over Nevada in DCS 2.1 with my Mirage 2000C and it looks pretty stunning!
With the update of DCS 2.0 alpha to DCS 2.1 alpha, the folks at Eagle Dynamics are continuing to update their game engine with the ultimate goal of unifying both DCS World 1.5 and DCS World 2.0 alpha into a more cohesive DCS World 2.5. From that point on all new maps and modules should be supporting the new experience. Until then things are still a little work in progress and my frame rates varied from 60 fps and smooth to extremely “stuttery” and below 30 frames per second. It may take some time to make the new engine render more smoothly.
There is no question that it looks incredible. What the new lighting system is capable of is pretty stunning and that lead me to check it all out by taking a little sightseeing tour at dawn – in a Mirage 2000C.
Sightseeing in a virtual Mach 2 jet fighter
I took an early morning spin around Nevada launching from Nellis AFB and heading along the Las Vegas strip, out into the mountains and then back to Nellis for a pretty good landing.
My skills with the mirage are improving. I’ve partially memorized the startup process and have mapped out in my brain what buttons I need to press and when. It’s taken a while but I can start up a jet from cold, fly around and bring it back in to park at the end with no trouble. Still mastering the weapon systems but that’s another story.
In what was surely breaking several virtual aviation guidelines, I coasted into the Las Vegas strip area at Mach 1.2. If this were real I’d be shattering glass and in a whole lot of trouble. Fortunately the virtual versions are somewhat more resistant to sonic boom.
The whole thing looks incredible in the early light with the dynamic range, lights on buildings and cars driving along. It’s incredibly immersive.
Passing McCarran International Airport I headed to the south east away from Vegas low over the mountains to Boulder City.
I discovered what I later found out is the Boulder Solar Project and Nevada Solar One according to Google Maps.
Finally I turned around and headed back to Nellis AFB for what I think was my best landing in the Mirage yet.
Lots of fun just flying around
I’m still getting a handle on this aircraft but I can say without a doubt that it is incredibly well detailed and a bundle of joy to fly in nearly every situation. Its fast and agile with handling that makes it easy to fly around the sky. It’s a great aircraft with which to take a tour of the Nevada map which Eagle Dynamics says is now essentially complete.
Touring a location like Las Vegas is a real treat in DCS. While the simulator focuses on combat, free flight is just as entertaining and supremely enjoyable.