Some more breaking news from the flight sim world as Heatblur and IndiaFoxtEcho, two well known developers for DCS and Microsoft Flight Simulator, announce that they are collaborating to bring us an F-14A and B for Microsoft Flight Simulator. Yeah!
F-14 in MSFS!
Although some of my readers will continue to find it unusual that military jets are popular in a civilian flight sim, the reality is that there’s a market for this kind of experience and Heatblur and IndiaFoxtEcho do excellent work.
On display is Heatblur’s outstanding art design and modeling that they’ve done for one of the most visually impressive module in DCS. The transition to Microsoft Flight Simulator has gone exceptionally well from the images released.
Here’s the joint statement released by both IndiaFoxtEcho and Heatblur.
Heatblur Simulations and IndiaFoxtEcho are thrilled to announce the development of the F-14A & B Tomcat for the Microsoft Flight Simulator platform!
The DCS: F-14 has been praised for its exceptional level of realism and attention to detail, and together, we are excited to develop an F-14 for Microsoft Flight Simulator with much the same ethos. Whether you’re an experienced virtual pilot or just starting out, you’ll be able to experience the thrill of flying one of the most iconic aircraft in aviation history in an entirely new way across the globe.
The F-14 Tomcat is a legend in the world of aviation and we’re excited to give players the opportunity to take control of this incredible machine. From the advanced avionics to the powerful engines, we will strive to make the Flight Simulator rendition of the F-14 as authentic as possible. We’re excited to combine the best of two worlds: IndiaFoxtEcho’s experience in Flight Simulator and Heatblur’s experience in DCS, and believe that we can combine some of the very best across all simulation platforms. What better opportunity than a great new partnership to bring the iconic Tomcat into a simulator, where you can fly and enjoy its magnificence anywhere in the world.
The Flight Simulator version of the F-14 will focus on recreating the core flying aspects of the Tomcat such as accurate flight dynamics, core avionics and using its suite of navigational and other systems. Our teams will strive to bring you as many features as is possible on the Flight Simulator platform while maintaining the bar of quality and accuracy which you all expect.
“Our F-14 has been a labour of love for years, and bringing an authentic experience of this legendary aircraft to a broader audience is yet another step in our F-14 journey. Due to our ambitious internal DCS roadmap, partnering with IndiaFoxtEcho to bring our F-14 to the Flight Simulator platform was a slam-dunk, and knowing the IFE team’s passion for the F-14 matches our own, we enter a new comfortable and natural partnership. We’re super excited for this expansion of our F-14 and new opportunities it presents both to ourselves and the community!” -Heatblur Simulations
“Since the announcement of Microsoft Flight Simulator we have been willing to bring a state-of-the-art Tomcat to this platform, as we did, a long time ago, for previous iteration of this simulator and we have always been huge fans of the Heatblur DCS rendition.
We are very excited to cooperate with them and we are confident that working together with them we can create a detailed and realistic F-14 for MSFS.” -IndiaFoxtEcho
Stay tuned for more information as development progresses and we take steps to continue our Tomcat journey. The aircraft is currently neck deep in development and we expect it to be released later this year.
Thank you all for your support and excitement, and we look forward to once again sharing the cadillac-roomy F-14 cockpit in Asobo Studio’s wonderful sim with you all!
Check out the screenshots!
18 Comments Add yours
The fantastic module is going to be published on wrong platform once again.
I really hoped for standalone simulator dedicated to F-14 and NavalOps.
I’m curious about the wrong platform? DCS is arguably the right platform which of course its already available for. MSFS will be great for sales as the market is massive and some folks seem to enjoy just flying a fighter jet along wherever they want not worried about enemy fighters or SAMs or the like.
I don’t think we’ll see standalone flight sims like we did with something like F-15 Strike Eagle III or F-14 Fleet Defender. The underlying technology is expensive and would requite half a decade or more to develop (look at MSFS) and to then not incorporate other products would not be good for sales.
DCS to me stands for Dull Cockpit Simulator, nothing else.
That’s why I find DCS Tomcat as superb mod deployed on wrong platform.
Which platform do you think it should go to?
(I hope I am answering to the right post.)
Standalone, Fleet Defender: F-14 II 😉
I see… I’m not following you terribly well but I’m trying.
I tend to deal with the what exists or what is likely to exist. Standalone platforms aren’t really economical anymore with the detail required for the core of the sim. There’s also very few advantages to such a system.
What F-14 Fleet Defender did great that DCS lacks is a campaign system. I spent hours flying CAP or escort for strike missions. Some very cool things they could do. DCS is capable of that and they are, slowly, rectifying that issue.
Wow, that’s a real surprise. I find the military plane cockpit textures in MSFS are always lacking compared to DCS, but this might change everything.
There are some military aircraft that have come out with a pretty high standard. IndiaFoxtEcho’s F-35 is, from what I’ve seen of it, done to a pretty high standard. A lot of others are not great which is very true.
The other F-14 in the MSFS marketplace right now does not have the same level of quality that Heatblur’s F-14 has. This will blow some folks away when they see it I think.
I considered the F-35 but even on IFE’s own site they have a long list of why you might get CTDs and that puts me off. But maybe it’s not an issue anymore.
I’m not sure if its an issue or not. I have considered getting it and I know a few people with it that are having a great time. So… it may be less of an issue than it sounds. IFE tends to be very transparent with issues so other addons may have similar levels of issue but without as much awareness. I’m not sure.
I picked up the IFE F-35 in MSFS a while back – it has never crashed (to desktop) on me. Crash to ground is perhaps another story … just kidding. It is excellent in that it feels pretty good and looks fantastic. How authentic the experience is … well very hard to say. I mean it’s all classified. It feels fine to me – it might be simplistic in the hover, but then the real one looks too stable in the videos I’ve seen to be controlled manually too. I also have the Hawk T1 (justflight), which probably is a touch dated on texturing of interior by MSFS standards, but it’s not bad (somewhere above DCS F-5E/Huey, behind Hornet/Viper/Tomcat/etc I’d say), and as being a study level plane with systems depth – it is. I also have the F-104G (simskunkworks), and it’s pretty good. It looks the part pretty well and it has custom code in the flight model for the BLCS “blown flaps” system – and it does work pretty well it seems. If quality of texturing/modelling and customization work in modelling high fidelity systems and/or flight models is important, than I’d advise staying away from the DC and SC Designs products. It’s not a knock on them though. They are lower cost planes intended for a casual crowd – and the devs are pretty clear about that. I’ve heard the recent Harrier release though was a bit more advanced, and the cockpit looks a lot closer to the razbam one in DCS. I’ve heard flying it is simpler, particularly in hover, but that fits per above casual simmer appeal. I don’t own it.
As for why in MSFS … I’ll never have as many military jets in MSFS as I do DCS. But it’s fun to be able to rip around like Sidewinder canyon or the Mach loop in a fast jet for example, neither of which you could do in DCS. You can do formation flying just as well in MSFS – do it with my buddy all the time. And systems depth in terms of the avionics and such is generally pretty strong. So the allure of flying a complex military fighter in that sim, with the ability to do so anywhere on the planet is kind of cool. Not for everyone, and it’s not something I do daily. I break out a fighter now and then to scratch an itch there and then generally am back in something like the Kodiak 100 or the Black Square King Air (awesome btw) for more frequent adventures.
everything in terms of weapons is not allowed on MSFS. so at the end its more eyecandy aircraft money making project.
Not allowed on the marketplace. External weapons carriage is possible in MSFS if sold through other storefronts.
It’s a massive flight sim market and some folks really do just love to fly around in the sim with a high performance jet like the F-14. It IS awfully fun to fly in DCS so I would hope that the fun translates to MSFS too. For me… it’s less of a thing because the DCS version does the important bits 😉 But for others this will be great and that’s good for everyone!
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The big thing with the MSFS version is you can do a much larger scale of the navigation and non-combat operations in the thing.
I’m looking forward to having both, so I can practice a lot of long distance operations in it in MSFS, and combat ops in DCS.
I still need to do that around the world trip, and if I can do it in the Tomcat using the aircraft’s own internal nav system, that would be a very fun way to learn it.
Then switch gears back to DCS and get on in the carrier operations and combat missions 🙂
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I am going to immediately remove the DC Designs F-14 from my wish list and probably get this on day one. Nothing against DC Designs – I have their F-16 and Stearman and enjoy them both, but the Heatblur F-14 is on a whole other level not even counting the weapons, Jester, or carrier ops.
Sometimes I just want to zoom around the sky and look at pretty airplanes and scenery, and a perfectly simulated DC-3 or 737 doesn’t necessarily scratch that itch!
It’s also fun to simulate a crossover between sims – training maneuvers in Pensacola followed by a long deployment flight to the Persian Gulf in MSFS (say the carrier is already there), and then switching to DCS for some combat in the “same” plane.
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While respecting the perspectives of those who just want to fly a well crafted fighter in the superb sky environmental simulator that is MSFS, I guess for me the issue is, nevertheless, what’s the point? F14 represents above all a superb combat simulator and if you can’t do that in MSFS, then no matter how realistic the overall environment, it’ll still get pretty stale pretty fast.
But hey, that’s just me and I recognize it’ll be a contested view; yep, it’ll certainly earn the developers extra revenue and showcase their outstanding F14 rendition on a far more popular platform. With unforeseen consequences.
There are different kinds of flyers. I’m sure there are some who would love the idea of flying across their home country in a really well made F-14. Just for the pleasure of flying. Hell, I spend half my time in DCS just flying around for the fun of it. I like the planes. I like taking off and landing and farting around in the clouds.
The Tomcat isn’t my cup of tea, but if Heatblur made an MSFS F-111, I would absolutely fly that thing across the country. Just for the delight of the flight.
Fair enough, Canadaone. I have to say I’ve been tempted to fly in MSFS for the sheer joy of that beautiful sky environment they replicate. My dream melding would be DCS’ combat mechanics and technical fidelity, F4 BMS’ dynamic campaign…..all wrapped up in MSFS’s visual and environmental replication. Now, that would indeed be flight simulation heaven!