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Old 10-20-2019, 10:01 AM   #1
idrisguitar
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Default Need some buying advice for first modules

Hi there.

So I have got into dcs recently and am loving learning the basics with the frogfoot. Ive been excited to invest some money into the game having enjoyed some flights with the free planes. But I’m having a lot of conflicting thoughts that I’d like advice on.

1: I want a clickable cockpit cause that realism and immersion excites me, also I’ll be getting a rift s at the end of the year and think a full fidelity module will be great for that
Conflict: however I’m worried about the depth and the sheer amount of investment to learn them might stop me from simply flying And enjoying the simulator.

2: I want to get modules that give me a good mix of a2a a2g and also carrier landings and takeoffs as I love that extra challenge. This doesn’t have to happen right away, but that’s what i want to end up with.
Conflict: If I was to go full fidelity to cover the above three, it would probably stretch me to thin in terms of learning it all.

3:Fc3 seems like the right choice in regards to both of the above points, in terms of range of gameplay and value. But I also want good tutorial missions so am worried fc3 might not be as good in that regard compared to the a10c for example.
Conflict: I really love the idea of a clickable cockpit (which would be missing in FC3) with an indepth startup and really feeling like a pilot before a mission. Especially for VR.

4: and most importantly. I have no plans to play multiplayer. Me free time is way too inconsistent and I’m just someone who loves playing on their own. So I’m wanting to go with the modules with the most singplayer content, campaigns both dlc and user made. I will also love getting into the editor and enjoy creating my own scenarios (I’m a unity developer and coder and can’t wait to get stuck in).
Conflict: the clear winner for single player content is the a10c and while I love plane and know I will own it in the end. The 660 page manual is soooooo intimidating.

I’m sorry for this nonsense of a post. As I said I’m super conflicted and don’t know what the right decision is.

I will say I have a $100-150 budget so that might help with the advice. And as mentioned am only getting VR for Christmas. Also I have il-2 all three campaigns for ww2 and easier access sim flying, so maybe DCS should fill a full fidelity slot in my collection? I’m going to stop talking now.

Really hope you can help but would understand if this gets no replies as well :p

Last edited by idrisguitar; 10-20-2019 at 11:46 AM. Reason: Formatting
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Old 10-20-2019, 10:30 AM   #2
Tom Kazansky
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Easy: FA-18C


Btw your No 3 is wrong. FC3 are non clickable.


The Hornet is a lot to learn but even without knowing all details, it is an instant fun machine.


Watch Wags' short but extremely helpful videos and there you go.
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Old 10-20-2019, 10:40 AM   #3
nessuno0505
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You have three chances:

1) FC3: both a/a and a/g, carriers, not so much to study. Conflict: it's su-25t level, non clickable, you'll get bored quickly.

2) F/A-18c: clickable cockpit, carriers, a/a and a/g, but get ready to study as much as for the a-10c (you won't believe how deeply in systems a plane can be simulated!)

3) an easier module with clickable cockpit, for example the f-5. You have clickable cockpit and go deep in systems, but they are a lot easier to learn than f-18 or a-10c. Both a/a and a/g even if less effective (Just two sidewinders and no bvr capability, only free fall ordnance, it's 1970 technology). Easy to learn systems but difficult to master since you have to learn how to free bombing and be precise and how to manage energy in dogfight. Such a plane Is not so good online (you are a sitting duck against 18s and 15s) but if you play offline in missions against appropriate assets (mig-21 and 2nd gen SAM for example) you can enjoy. No carriers however.
Some missions and campaigns are available for the f-5, even if not so much as for a-10c, and you can create your own with the editor.
If you don't like f-5 there are other similar modules you can choose (clickable but not difficult to learn) such as korea jets or a warbird.
Maybe the Mirage 2000 too Is not so difficult, and Is a 4th gen fighter, but Is almost only a/a and the developer (razbam) Is currently changing a lot of systems due to new more accurate data, so maybe it's better to wait until this overhaul Is done.

Last edited by nessuno0505; 10-20-2019 at 10:42 AM.
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Old 10-20-2019, 11:01 AM   #4
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If you are going to have VR on a couple of months, I’m pretty sure that you wont be satisfied with FC3 ... instead, I suggest to consider getting the Harrier, as it ticks most of your preferences:

- It is full fidelity but not as complex as an A-10C.
- it has the most complete training of any module, crafted by Baltic Dragon.
- it can operate from a LHA Carrier (the Tarawa)
- it has a wide variety of weapons.
- It doesnt include a Campaign yet, but Baltic Dragon has indicated that he is working on one.
- Its cockpit is gorgeous in VR

Probably the only downside is that it is mostly A-G, as it doesn't have an A-A radar, and that it is still not fully finished.

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Old 10-20-2019, 01:34 PM   #5
nessuno0505
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rudel_chw View Post
.. instead, I suggest to consider getting the Harrier, as it ticks most of your preferences:

- It is full fidelity but not as complex as an A-10C.
Maybe because it's not finished, I think It won't be much easier when completed
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Old 10-20-2019, 11:27 AM   #6
Baaz
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Hello Idrisguitar, and welcome to DCS. Great to hear you're enjoying yourself.

In my opinion, you have one choice that meets all your needs in a single purchase: F/A-18C.

Fully clickable cockpit, good mix of A2A / A2G, good speed, air refueling, naval ops... I mean, this thing can pretty much do it all, and will certainly give you that fix you need.

The A-10C is a good choice too, but again in my opinion, the F/A-18 is just better. The A-10C can carry a large ordnance package that the F/A-18 can't, but it comes at a cost: SPEED. She's slow as hell. Depending on range to OP area, the F-18 can be there and back before the A-10 even arrives. I love the A-10C (my favorite plane in reality); it was my first fixed-wing aircraft purchased. But it being so slow, not designed for carrier ops (though we do try in DCS), and no BVR capability at all (F/A-18C is capable of conduction CAS/CAP/SEAD in a single sortie, and at the push of a button), I've basically put the A-10C on the back burner; flying her only a couple times over the past year.

Don't fret over the number of pages a manual has, or if it will stretch you "too thin learning it all", because if you're truly enjoying it, it won't matter. There's plenty of videos and how-to's out there, that learning it will be the easy part; putting it into practice a whole other matter.

Whatever you choose, you'll be happy with your decision, I'm sure. Good luck, and I wish you well in your future DCS endeavours.


EDIT: The above statement was made with the impression that you were looking for a fixed wing aircraft. But if you really want to experience the best of DCS, then you have to get the Ka-50 Black Shark. Obviously not as fast as an F/A-18, and still slower than the A-10C, but anything the A-10 can do a Kamov can do with more style. Furthermore, ANYONE can fly a plane, but it takes a pilot to fly a chopper just my additional two cents. LOL

Last edited by Baaz; 10-20-2019 at 11:44 AM.
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Old 10-20-2019, 01:41 PM   #7
nessuno0505
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Baaz View Post
The A-10C is a good choice too, but again in my opinion, the F/A-18 is just better. The A-10C can carry a large ordnance package that the F/A-18 can't, but it comes at a cost: SPEED. She's slow as hell. Depending on range to OP area, the F-18 can be there and back before the A-10 even arrives. I love the A-10C (my favorite plane in reality); it was my first fixed-wing aircraft purchased. But it being so slow, not designed for carrier ops (though we do try in DCS), and no BVR capability at all
F-18 Is multi role, a-10c Is Just a/g. Yes it's slow, f-18 arrives first but when you have delivered a couple of ordnances you are already low on fuel. A-10 Is deliberately slow because It must have a long loitering time: you can stay a lot in the area of operations. If you want both a/a and a/g the a-10c Is not for you, but It Is not something less than the 18, it's something different.
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Old 10-20-2019, 11:32 AM   #8
Mesha44
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If you are still undecided then punt and download the A-4E mod. It has a clickable cockpit, has lots of basic systems that are interesting to learn. Can do some A-A but it is mostly A-G. Can land and take off from carrier but has some quirks since it is only a mod.
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Old 10-20-2019, 12:08 PM   #9
Tippis
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F-5 ticks all the boxes (including the slightly incorrect #3 as pointed out above) except for carrier landings… technically. It can land on carriers, even if it really shouldn't.

It's a pilot's plane with only the slightest hint of pilot aids so you have to learn to fly it yourself, but it's also a very easily flyable plane. It teaches you not to rely on fancy HUDs full of information, but rather demands a good eye for your environment and a good scan of your instruments. Similarly, it requires you to use good attack procedures for its weaponry since the only help you get is a radar-ranged gun sight and a bunch of delivery parameter tables (and when you get tired of that you can just use laser-guided bombs and ignore almost all of that… ). The same thing goes for navigation: it's all about visual recognition of landscape features and nav-beacon offsets — bare-bones but effective.

It is fully clickable and if/when something goes wrong, you'll need to trouble-shoot it, but it's also fairly simple so it's not a huge list to check. It has a couple of training-oriented campaigns (which admittedly get a bit same:y after a while), but which still demand of you that you know all those basics really well. That is a theme for almost everything about the F-5: it is all basic, but that is not the same thing as simple or simplistic, and the skills you learn will carry over to almost every other module out there — landing skills beyond just staring at a flight path marker; energy management without relying on pure thrust to get you of trouble or on HUD cues to keep you out of it; rudder control mattering without being absolutely central to everything.

The simplicity sets you up well for more difficult-to-fly planes because you already know those basic and just need to apply them more precisely; it also sets you up for more complex planes because some of those basics will be automated and you can focus on the more intricate stuff instead, but when/if the automation fails, you still know how to handle things. It also offers a neat amount of direct upgrade paths: the Mirage is in many ways a beefed-up F-5 in terms of flying (highly automated flight and vastly easier navigation, similar weapons loads except with the addition of radar missiles), and the Hornet is beefed up in terms of capabilities (many similar, if slightly more forgiving, flight characteristics but a radically expanded weapons delivery capacity). And of course, if you choose to “downgrade” to Korean- or WWII-era aircraft, you will be familiar with the visual-range gun combat, the footwork required, and flying by eye rather than HUD.
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Old 11-06-2019, 06:11 PM   #10
KennyG
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I also endorse the F-5. It’s all purpose, a complete product, has a clickable cockpit and is great fun to fly in VR. It doesn’t give you any high tech crutches and will introduce the modern jet fighter in its purest sense. There are campaigns available and extra outside reference material from Chuck Owl, which the F-16 doesn’t have. It has a tail hook so you can do carrier operations. Great plane to start with and it’s cheap in comparison to the others.

PS the Air Force still uses a variant of this airframe for training today, in the T-38.

Last edited by KennyG; 11-06-2019 at 06:17 PM.
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