This DCS World Weekend Update came packed full of DCS World updates for specific modules and there’s a lot to get through from Hornet and Viper to Apache and Super Carrier. Then we’ve got third party news coming out as well with updates from RAZBAM, from Baltic Dragon and Aerges. Let’s go!
Hornet, Viper, Apache and more!
A big chunk of this week’s update is focused on Eagle Dynamics and the various modules that they are currently developing. Some, like the DCS: F/A-18C Hornet, have been out for a while now but Eagle Dynamics seems intent on continuing to add features and refine the module which is very much appreciated in my book.
We start with the F/A-18C Hornet which Eagle Dynamics has a long list of things that they are working on. The flight model and flight control system are at the top of the list and that includes the notable mention of a complete review of the flight model in ground effect – right now its well known to suck the Hornet into the ground rather than have it float above as it should.
There are also updates for the radar (notoriously unreliable in some patches and quite capable in others), GPS weapon lofting, a new in-cockpit pilot model, new fuses for bombs, data transfer cartridge and MUMI page – letting us pre-configure mission elements. New symbols for the RWR with emitter jamming, FLIR and HARM assignment and “different” radar types. Finally, carrier INS alignment. In short, the Hornet is getting quite a bit of work done on it. Certainly not forgotten!
The F-16C Viper similarly has quite the list of items that are being worked on. The RWR is at the top of the list here with symbols, tones and behaviour all being worked on to more closely match the real world example. Cockpit pilot model gets an upgrade just like the Hornet. Radar update for the F-16 also planned. Data transfer cartridge and DTE Page for the Viper just like with the Hornet. Finally, air-to-air datalink assignment will be coming letting you assign wingmen to targets via the radar.
The A-10C II gets an update mention here too. The last main remaining feature is the ARC-210 radio. This updated UHF/VHF radio replaces one of the two VHF radios currently onboard and comes with UFC, STAT, and COMM page updates in the avionics. DTC and Link 16 functions are also being updated together with the Hornet and Viper. Nice!
Finally, AH-64D Apache has plenty of effort being aimed at it too. The first item on the list is improvements to the flight model and the stability system. According to Eagle Dynamics, programming the Stability and Control Augmentation System (SCAS) is almost as complex as programming the flight model itself.
We are continuing to refine the SCAS to make flying this aircraft a bit easier by adjusting the collective channel behavior, tuning the yaw offset, eliminating the roll when ham-fisting the collective, and adjusting the hold modes.
Some of these adjustments are likely based on feedback from some well known SMEs including Casmo who has generally been supportive of the flight model as is but has noted a few inconsistencies particularly with uncommanded roll.
The fire control radar, laser spot tracker, laser warning receiver, and radar frequency interferometer and radar jammer are all planned to be worked on. Some of these features, they warn, may go into 2024. Still, it’s good to have a big picture roadmap.
It’s been a little while since we heard much about DCS: Supercarrier but we’ve got an update! There’s Ready Room and PRIFLY (airboss deck) which are both new experiences in DCS. Ready room will let you review your mission brief, setup your aircraft, view cameras around the deck, chat with other players, review the mission map, and hear live sounds from “the roof.”
It sounds like Eagle Dynamics are building a kind of pre-mission experience similar to what we see in some of the lobbies on games like Destiny. I’m curious to see how this plays out exactly.
PRIFLY or the airboss deck will let you see the deck below, direct the carriers heading and speed, control deck lighting, view the PLAT CAM, and view the plotting map. This part makes it sound like DCS: Supercarrier will become much more controllable giving a player much more control over what’s happening with the carrier. That should also be interesting!
Finally, it sounds like the deck crew are getting a big update too with new plane directors and captains. These AI crew members will direct the airplane from elevator to catapult or to a parking spot after landing. Fascinating!
That’s it for DCS World Weekend but there’s even more news out there so lets look at that too.
Ron Zambrano, RAZBAM CEO, has been posting image after image over the last few days on Twitter with shots of the DCS: F-15E. It’s cockpit, exterior, various liveries, and visual effects, are all on display in these shots.
Next up, Baltic Dragon has released a video and its all about the DCS: F-15E Strike Eagle manual. RAZBAM and Baltic Dragon together appear to be working very hard to make sure that the Strike Eagle launches with ample training materials.
Check out the video to see exactly what is being prepared for launch.
One of the reoccurring topics on the r/hoggit group and elsewhere in the DCS community is the desire to see upgrades for the DCS: F-5E (and some of the other Belsimtek products). The aircraft has a variety of issues these days including some quirks with the way that the engine throttle interacts with the engine settings, accuracy and authenticity of the RWR, gunsight and gun dispersion issues and more.
A screencap from the DCS Discord which was then shared on r/hoggit has Matt Wagner from Eagle Dynamics agreeing that the F-5E needs work and that changes are already underway.
That’s it for now but it sounds like 2023 is bound to be a very interesting year for DCS World pilots!