Most recently, I’ve spent a bit of time in the DCS Cold War server and flying an aircraft that I’m always impressed with when I come back to it – the DCS: AJS-37 Viggen. Here’s a bit of a recap of my flying with it recently.
Cold War popularity?
DCS’ focus seems to be focused on two polarities – modern jet combat and World War II. But there is a growing collection of aircraft in the middle. The MiG-19, MiG-21bis, AJS-37, and F-5E are the core of the set right now with some other types around the periphery featuring such diverse types as the F-14 or the L-39.
In development right now are a bunch of new Cold War types. The F-8 Crusader by Magnitude 3, A-7 Corsair II by Flying Iron Simulations, the MiG-17 by Red Star Simulations and the Mirage F1 by Aerges are all in the works. Rumours abound that Deka Ironwork Simulations are going to do some sort of Chinese combat aircraft from the era as well.
With that in mind, there’s been some recent interest in flying these jets within my usual flight sim group and so I went on to the Cold War server for the first time. Here are two stories from recent flights on there.
MiG-19 fighter sweep
My first experience on the server ended up being in RAZBAM’s MiG-19. Although this module isn’t not as good as I think it could be (and could do with some TLC soon), I quite like the MiG-19 as a jet and I know it better than the MiG-21. So, with that in mind, I took the jet into combat on the server and managed to do very well in all but one area.
Flying this jet on this server is more of a WWII experience than it is a modern jet experience. Radar ranges are short and visual spotting is still very essential.
In this first sortie, I was flying east along the Caucasus coastline looking for a fellow pilot flying in an L-39 (I never did find him) while dodging two friendlies that attempted to attack me and pulled off at the last minute and then getting into the most bizarre dogfight I’ve been in for ages.
I spotted the contrail of a presumed bandit and turned to engage. I kicked in the MiG-19’s afterburners and started to gain on the bandit. As I closed, I confirmed that it was indeed an F-5 and I even made a brief snapshot at him with my NR-30 cannons as he turned in front of me.
Then, I noticed a dot closing on my six and another MiG started pulling lead. I evaded and attempted to show him my wings so he could see that I was also a MiG. I didn’t have time to complete that maneuver as the MiG exploded (partially to my relief as it appears that he was about to open fire). The MiG was shot down by a Viggen. Now in a 2v1 situation I continued my turn as the Viggen went in the opposite direction.
Then the F-5 I was originally chasing exploded as well. Another Sidewinder from the Viggen that had just splashed the MiG behind me had just been shot down in a blue on blue situation. That left the Viggen, flying away from me, and myself.
At this point I quickly overtook him and fired both R-3S missiles which connected and destroyed the aircraft. The two missile shot was a bit of a mistake as the weapon was set to salvo mode rather than single shot. I had forgotten all about that but I will remember to take that off in the future.
I need to manage my fuel better because this otherwise successful flight ended up with me just short of the base and without enough fuel or airspeed to glide back home. Still, this was a good first sortie.
Setting out in a pair of Viggen’s to attack the enemy FARP in another Cold War server flight, my flight lead had technical issues and ended the flight but I pressed on.
Our GCI was alive for this mission and before too long I was being warned about an enemy aircraft in my vicinity. Staying low and fast, I hoped to avoid detecting as I closed in on the hostile aircraft.
It took me a while to locate it but eventually I did. The aircraft was a MiG-19 and it had its hands full with short range air defenses that lobbed at least one missile at the aircraft. That seemed to miss exploding somewhere between us as I went to stage 3 afterburner and made a 180 degree turn. Still not spotting me, I closed in to firing range but at this point the MiG had spotted me and made a tight turn.
I attempted to lock and fire the first Sidewinder pulling the nose of my Viggen to give the Sidewinder a better angle to track but my efforts were in vain. The missile came off the rail and promptly.
Then the MiG straightened out and that was when I fired missile number two. The Sidewinder tracked straight, hit the MiG directly and the aircraft spun apart in a burst of flame, smoke and debris. Splash one MiG!
Just a few minutes later and I got a call out for a nearby enemy aircraft. After several minutes circling around each other trying to spot the other and listening intently to the ground base controllers. The MiG-21 eventually got frustrated and headed east and away from the fight but not at a particularly quick speed.
Once again, I was on to the afterburners with the stage 3 light glowing brightly. I rapidly overtook the MiG and fired a single Sidewinder. It tracked, hit and destroyed the MiG with the aircraft crashing to the ground moments later.
Then I returned to base and called it a day!
Watch the action
The second fight I decided to record and I have the two most exciting bits immortalized in this YouTube video. The action is short, sharp and it shows off what short range missile fights among these cold warriors is like.
Interested in joining the action? Check out Alpenwolf’s Cold War 1947-1991 multiplayer server!