DCS: F-16 reveals early access is close, TGP soon too

When Eagle Dynamics has been saying early autumn I was, in my head, putting that as mid October or even later. That still seemed like an autumn release to me, yet, it seems like the DCS: F-16C might be coming a bit sooner than that. A new update from Matt Wagner helps fill in some of the details!

Early release date?

Matt Wagner reports that Eagle Dynamics is still planning on an ‘early autumn release’ but that the specific date is not yet certain because certain items are still in flux. That means that the development team is close but they may delay if bugs or issues come up.

September 25th was posted on the Steam page, mostly out of necessity to provide a release date to Steam, however, it does seem like Eagle Dynamics is looking at that date as a best estimate – even if they miss the deadline, it still sounds like it will be coming much sooner than at least I had thought.

Features to come including Litening

One of the things that the update provided us with was a list of confirmed features for release plus an interesting note about the targeting pod.

– Finalizing CCIP and CCRP bombing modes.

– Tuning the flight model and braking system. Much of this involves drag values.

– RWS and ACM air-to-air radar modes.

– Air-to-air gun, AIM-9, and AIM-120.



– Cold start procedures.

– Tuning the NVIS cockpit lighting.

– External model, in particularly the landing gear and aircraft underside.

– Even at early access release, the skin will still be preliminary.

Most of those features we already knew about but it’s still interesting to see what they are feeling confident about. One feature that stands out to me in particular is the HMCS (Helmet Mounted Cueing System) which we had to wait for a while on before it was added to the Hornet. Also of interest is the fact that the external model is still being worked on and that the skin will still be preliminary on release, something that was finished on the Hornet.

We are also working hard on the Litening targeting pod with LGBs, but we can’t promise this will be ready in time for the early access release, but it’s something already well underway.

Matt Wagner

And then there’s the Litening targeting pod which the team is apparently working hard to come at release. If you’ll recall, the Litening took many months before finally coming to the Hornet. By contrast it seems that the work done on the Hornet is ensuring that this pod will be available on the F-16 either on day one or not that long after.

Stay tuned!

This has been an interesting update from Matt Wagner and the Eagle Dynamics team. It makes the F-16 feel a lot closer than I had expected and that it will be at least slightly more feature complete even during early access launch.

Now, let’s just hope that the radar has a decent IFF system on day one so that multiplayer is a reasonably smooth experience.

Looking forward to checking out the Viper soon! In the meantime, check out the full update here.

9 Comments Add yours

  1. TexasWarbird says:

    I’m not sure why I have a bad gut feeling about this release.

    I mean, I’ve already spoken with my wallet and invested into the module. But I can’t shake something off LOL. Maybe probably read to many negative comments on the DCS forums from people not understanding that it’s an early access release. If the F/A-18 is anything to go by, the quality of this bird should be top notch. I’m hoping I’m just over analyzing.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Percy Danvers says:

      Getting the same impression myself from the forums and Hoggit. People seem massively more upset about missing features in the Hornet than excited for the Viper’s release, and there seems to be an expectation that the F-16 will not be feature complete for a very, very long time. It seems like DCS fans have an urge to hate one developer, and now that Razbam has turned over a new leaf, ED is everyone’s favorite one to hate (not that there aren’t some legitimate things to be upset with). I’m guessing there’s a large “silent majority” who don’t even go on the forums who are buying the F-16.

      Personally I’m holding off until I have a very clear idea of what state the Viper is in before I buy it.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. ShamrockOneFive says:

        There’s always going to be quieter fans who aren’t saying anything and who aren’t all that worried.

        For many of us, we know ED does in-depth modules and that they do them well. It takes them a while to get traction sometimes but they mature into some truly great products.

        Hornet is awesome as far as I’m concerned. It’s not done but I can go and have fun with it. Viper will, if the track record is anything to go by, be a bit shaky at launch but the greatness will be visible too.

        In it for the long haul.

        Liked by 1 person

    2. ShamrockOneFive says:

      I wouldn’t worry too much if you’re in for the long haul. The Hornet was limited and a bit rough at the start but it’s maturing and become a great module.

      The F-16 will be a bit different no doubt but I’m sure it’ll be great fun up front and mature through any early issues.

      Fingers crossed of course!


  2. Paul says:

    I’ve honestly been confused for the past several months as to why this Falcon keeps getting called a Viper. This post made me finally look it up. It IS a Fighting Falcon, not a Viper. Viper is just a nickname.
    12 year old me is feeling vindicated and reassured.


    1. ShamrockOneFive says:

      The short version of the story is that the Air Force calls it Fighting Falcon and the pilots call it Viper.

      ED’s marketing is calling it Viper so I’m following that lead.

      A similar story is evolving right now with the F-35. Officially Lightning II but pilots have started calling it Panther.


  3. Michael Dwyer says:

    My take on any of the early access aircraft is that, just like the real aircraft there are bugs to work out, things to test and systems to correct. If you want to fly as a test pilot, then jump into early access, otherwise wait for the final product.

    I have full confidence that it will get finished, and be a great module, but not until some time next year. In the mean time I can learn the systems as they come on line and be ahead of the game.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. ShamrockOneFive says:

      Well said!


  4. Mischiew Rithe says:

    I wasn’t expecting that this year, it’s a very good surprise!
    And early autumn… is today, so it shouldn’t be a long wait. Busy times ahead 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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