It’s been a while since we heard about Eagle Dynamics free map project, the DCS: Marianas Islands, and now we’ve learned some new details about the map and also about some new features and fixes coming to DCS: F/A-18C Hornet and DCS: F-16C Viper. Let’s have a look!
Taking a trip to the Marianas islands
DCS: Marianas Islands hasn’t been heard about very much recently. In-fact, our last big news item on this seems to go back to May of this year. Fortunately it seems like the map has been making progress and this week’s development report says that the team has used real geographic data including topographic and road map information to create the map. Civilian areas are now complete and airports and bases such as Antonio B. Won Pat airport and Andersen Air Force base are being worked on.
New screenshots accompanied this week’s update and they look good.
DCS: Marianas Islands is a free map coming to DCS World. I think there was some hope that it would be later this year but this update suggests that new details will be released in 2021.
Updates for Hornet
Some key updates are coming to the Hornet that will once again help fill out jet’s capabilities. GRID will allow you use create and edit waypoints using coordinates – useful when working with a JTAC. This next one will fill in a major MFD feature – the Azimuth / Elevation or AZ/EL display is coming. This will display air-to-air radar contacts and their relative elevation. That should help Hornet pilots generate an even more detailed picture of the radar contacts ahead. Eagle Dynamics also reports that automatic-IFF and FLIR elements are to be added here as well.
Other items being corrected are the ground effect for the Hornet (which currently sucks you in instead of pushing you away), corrected HARM lofting, and a bug with the IR-Maverick. I hope as well that they solve some bugs that have cropped up recently with the radar being unable to maintain a lock in multiplayer.
Updates for Viper too
DCS: F-16C is not left out in the updates and several are planned for the November open beta update, however, some updates are not as they involve a deeper set of upgrades to the jet before issues can be solved. The update from this DCS World Weekend News says it best,
We understand that the targeting pod and pre-planned mode of the Maverick is not working as desired. This is not a malfunction of either the targeting pod or Maverick, but rather the Sensor Point of Interest (SPI) logic in the Viper. This is a high priority for the team to address, but it will not be ready for the November Open Beta update. However, the next update will include a significant improvement to ground handling, non-PRE mode Maverick improvements, refinements to the HARM, and more.DCS World Weekend News
So, updates are definitely coming here but some will have to wait, likely until December. The mood on the DCS: F-16C Viper seems more upbeat in recent weeks after the HARM and Maverick updates have come in and as the F-16 finally starts to feel more like the jet everyone knows it to be. I maintain that it is already one of the most fun to fly even without its full functionality.
Look for these updates to come soon.