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Am I crazy? Is the A-10C learning curve too steep for first plane?


Burgo38
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I'll narrow that question down for obvious reasons. I have no flight experience IRL & very little in sims, but I am committed to putting in the time required to learn this properly. My question for you experienced pilots is; am I being too ambitious by starting with the A-10C? Hardware wise I have a CV1 & Warthog HOTAS so I'd like to get started on this plane but the learning curve is STEEP! For example, I did the landing training mission last night and couldn't even find the runway! Should I start with an easier plane or just dive right in? I note there are plenty of beginner resources on this forum to guide me and I will read that 600+ page manual (yawn).

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If you don't have sim flight experience, you are in trouble :) I don't want to scare you but there is sooo much more to learn than simply some tutorials and dcs a10c manual.

The learning curve is much steeper than you think :)

 

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well, there is no harm starting with a10c but it will be a bit more complicated. for example, if you tried landing with su25t instead of a10c you wouldnt need to use the systems that will guide you to the airport because su25t has simplified systems modelling. A10C on the other hand, has advanced system modelling which means you need to use and adjust the navigation systems that will guide you to that airport. if u did try that in su25t only thing u need to is change the Hud mode to RTN(return home) and cycle through RTN waypoints to choose the airfield you wanna land and the aircraft will adjust every component for that airfield cos it has simplified system modelling. A10c wont help you like that.

when you want to do something with an aircraft, first you need to learn the systems that you will need. That means you have to read about those systems and practice. The reading part can be boring sometimes, in an aircraft like su25t reading part will be like 2-3 pages at max for one system but with an aircraft like a10c it could be a lot(and i really mean A Lot in this case) more.

So if you dont mind reading a lot instead of playing the sim a lot until you learn the systems that govern the aircraft, stick with the a10c, but if you think doing this will make you get bored from the sim change to an aircraft with simplified systems modelling.

In my case, i did it like this su25t>Flaming Cliffs3(su33>su27>f15)>mig21-bis>uh-1h huey>A10c and im still learning the a10c.

 

Long story short, i dont think its about being easy or not, its just about how much time you invest in this sim.

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I've only recently learnt the A10-C myself and it is a complex aircraft with lots of systems.

 

However, you won't be using all the systems at once and you can do a lot with only a few systems.

 

Best advice is to break it down into chunks. Learn start-up. Learn take off and landing. Once your happy with them start looking at Navigation. And even there, keep it simple. You have plenty of ways to navigate and many tricks but most of the time you'll just fly basic waypoints so get the hang of them before trying anything fancy.

 

It'll take a while but you should enjoy it and before you know it you'll be ready to blow stuff up and wondering what all the fuss was about.

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Actually, I disagree with most of the people above if you're talking about learning to fly.

 

The A10C is quite a tame bird. You don't need to learn and master all its systems if your game is to learn basic flight, plus it's got ILS and TACAN when you want to jump into learning navigation.

 

Sure, it's got lots of systems and takes a long time to master them, but the physical act of flying it? Not too long.

 

That said, the L-39 is probably the best for learning in general in DCS currently.


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My question for you experienced pilots is; am I being too ambitious by starting with the A-10C? H

Absolutely not.

You answered your own question by saying you are 'absolutely committed'. There is nothing in the A-10C that is a barrier to learning by being complex. Flying around, t/o and landing can be achieved in any other aircraft just as easily and with the A-10C sure, it takes longer to learn everything, but that doesn't mean you can't learn enough to get by and then have a great time picking away at little things in the A-10C for years at a speed that suits you.

 

With the A-10C though, please make sure you learn all the terminology of the HOTAS first and get your fingers taught where to go, as skipping that base layer of learning tends to mess things up for later.

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I've only recently learnt the A10-C myself and it is a complex aircraft with lots of systems.

 

However, you won't be using all the systems at once and you can do a lot with only a few systems.

 

Best advice is to break it down into chunks. Learn start-up. Learn take off and landing. Once your happy with them start looking at Navigation. And even there, keep it simple. You have plenty of ways to navigate and many tricks but most of the time you'll just fly basic waypoints so get the hang of them before trying anything fancy.

 

It'll take a while but you should enjoy it and before you know it you'll be ready to blow stuff up and wondering what all the fuss was about.

 

I agree,

 

The A10 is quite easy to fly because its quite slow, it gets harder to use effectively in combat with all it's systems to learn and know, learn the startup first, grab a checklist and then do some circuits around an airfield with Visual flight rules (VFR).

 

See most what to just jump in and fire off maverick missiles and use the gun and they want to do all this straightaway. It takes time to learn each part and to know when to use it and use each part effectively under the combat conditions.

 

Just remember this is a very close replica of the real deal here and pilots learn all this over many many years starting with trainers(A Career). They also study all the potential threats and their capabilities they could face in combat and how to best use the A10 and all it's capabilities and weapons for the situation at hand.

 

I have been flying the DCS A-10C for years, it still takes me a little to get back into the zone after taking some time off flying other aircraft.

 

Just take you time and enjoy, any big problems you cannot get you head around post them here and someone is sure to help you.

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Having gotten into the A-10C not so long ago myself I agree that the key to learning it is to organise the steps and parts required. Do one thing at a time and everything will be okay, even though of course the FC3 types are a little easier (for example there is no start-up checklist, just a big 'GO!'-button.)

One more thing to add, though, is to perhaps take a look at Multiplayer along the way. There are servers mostly dedicated to learning and practicing and a lot of people on those are going to be helpful.

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You have a Warthog and an A-10C. Yes, that makes you crazy. Go through the flight manual so you know where all the topics are; check out the tables starting on Page 86 for the TMS, DMS, Coolie Hat & China Hat. Sit through a You Tube startup video. take a few flights without weapons so you can get a feel for the jet - it is a hog when weighed down. I've flown the DCS A-10C going on 8 years now and still enjoy the heck out of it. Pretty soon you will be landing it like spreading butter on toast.

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+1 for "you're good to go with the A-10C" :)

 

The depth of the systems modeled in our A-10C is crazy. IMO it's still the most complex aircraft to master in DCS.

 

On the other hand, the aircraft has excellent flying characteristics. It's pretty easy to fly once you get the hang of it. The airframe and most of the flight control systems are 1970's tech, while most of the avionics and targeting stuff are early 2000's, making it both a very traditional aircraft and the most modern one we currently have in DCS (at least regarding the fully clickable modules).

 

The A-10C has a huge array of failures that can be set in the mission editor (currently only available in Single Player) and that can happen as a result of battle damage (both SP and MP) so that it actually makes sense to learn all those secondary and tertiary and emergency systems and modes and learn how to do single engine landings etc.

 

When I started with the A-10C, I only learned all the modern day features, like navigating waypoints using the HUD and how to use Mavericks with the help of the TGP. Nowadays I'm enjoying more basic tasks like navigating via TACAN and doing proper tip-ins for gun-runs and CCIP delivered dumb bombs.

 

I think I'm a decent A-10C pilot in DCS, but I definitely haven't mastered it yet. And I've flown it ever since the Beta. You absolutely can't go wrong with this uglyness. :D

 

Like some others already said, just take it one step at a time.

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Thanks for all the responses guys, what a helpful community. Considering that feedback I'm thinking the best way for me to start is to lean the basics in the flaming cliffs planes while reading the A10C manual & memorising the systems & terminology as best as I can. Does that sound like a good learning method?

 

One problem I've already encountered is that making notes/ checklists is almost pointless in VR because it's so cumbersome to read them in flight. Guess I'll have to rely on my memory & practice.

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Of all the combat aircraft in DCS, the A10C fly's like a souped up Cessna trainer. Plus it has steam gauges and modern gauges. Can't think of a better AC to get started with in DCS if it was the only one you can afford. If your in VR then doubly so because you can click on everything in the cockpit (well minus the external lights.) Just auto start the thing if your intimidated at first to do the startup procedure.

 

As another poster suggested... just take it slow and work on takeoffs then landings, than navigation (simple navigation using waypoints; than more difficult using VOR/ILS/TACAN.) Then progress to weapons delivery. Unless of course once you get the hang of flying you don't care to wait to blow something up. How ever you do it, I'm sure it will be fun.

 

Good luck and welcome to the club.


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Considering that feedback I'm thinking the best way for me to start is to lean the basics in the flaming cliffs planes while reading the A10C manual & memorising the systems & terminology as best as I can. Does that sound like a good learning method?

 

Don't know about you, but I'm a hands-on guy. I can read 40 pages and watch 4 tutorials - but sitting in the pit and actually doing it myself teaches me so much more. :thumbup:

 

Of course there's nothing wrong with learning the basics in the FC3 aircraft. They're much more approachable and many of them already have an advanced flight model forcing you to use proper procedures, or you'll break something. ;)

 

Don't have VR yet so can't give any advice in that regard.

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I reckon it's the best one to learn how to fly planes in DCS OP. It's easy to fly and although the systems seem overwhelming they are not really all that complicated once you get into it.

 

Just take it one step at a time, learn to take off, navigate and land, then move on from there. The only really difficult thing to do is air to air refueling, that is a challenge to learn.

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Don't forget about the Free TF-51D if you want to just fly and get the real raw feeling for flight.

 

The TF-51D will teach you the basic fundamentals of flight with little systems to worry about, plus it has a fully clickable cockpit too.

 

Checkout the Essay's at the top of the DCS spitfire fourm about flying taildragger aircraft.

 

You will need to put a curve on your controls for these types of aircraft so they are less sensitive, some rather to get an extension for the warthog, you can lean more about axis tuning with this tutorial on steam "How To Setup Controls and Joystick"

 

Before I forget, Chuck has created top quality simplified manuals for most of the DCS aircraft and will help you get up to speed very quickly. Highly recommended you download the A-10C manual HERE

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Chuck's DCS Tutorial Library

Download PDF Tutorial guides to help get up to speed with aircraft quickly and also great for taking a good look at the aircraft available for DCS before purchasing. Link

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The A-10C may have some complex systems, but it's a remarkably stable and forgiving plane to fly. Landing is particularly easy, as the various systems involved pretty much remove all of the guesswork. The TVV shows you exactly where your plane is going. The AOA indicator lets you know whether or not you're on-speed. Between the two, VFR becomes a breeze.

 

As for the rest, just walk into them gradually. Tackle the various advanced topics one by one as you go.

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I'll narrow that question down for obvious reasons. I have no flight experience IRL & very little in sims, but I am committed to putting in the time required to learn this properly. My question for you experienced pilots is; am I being too ambitious by starting with the A-10C? Hardware wise I have a CV1 & Warthog HOTAS so I'd like to get started on this plane but the learning curve is STEEP! For example, I did the landing training mission last night and couldn't even find the runway! Should I start with an easier plane or just dive right in? I note there are plenty of beginner resources on this forum to guide me and I will read that 600+ page manual (yawn).

 

Start off with the A-10C. It is a very easy aircraft to fly. Do the training missions 1 at a time and enjoy LEARNING how to operate it.

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Start off with the A-10C. It is a very easy aircraft to fly. Do the training missions 1 at a time and enjoy LEARNING how to operate it.

 

I second that. It may be better to start with a fresh mind and learn everything from scratch than to get the key binding and procedures for another easier jet only to have to redo everything on A-10.

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Use kneeboard builder to make a checklist show i your kneeboard. You can find those on google.

 

Don't get scared by the systems, they are all easy to learn. The hard is to make basic flying your second nature. In time t/o landing and maneuvering will be easy as walking but it takes lota of time and practice. Also it is hard to learn how to employ in battle, tactics etc... You will see in time, you will have to learn the air defence vehicles, aurface 2 air missiles etc...

 

I can recommend you the basic flight training qualifications campaign by maple flag. Very good for practice, you must master every mission. And after that go for the advanced flight training qualifications.

 

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This is what I did.

 

Stay away from the ground.

Jump in free flight for the handling practice.

Use Quick start , Georgia easy mission.

Use the manual to learn each weapon system one at a time.

Start with bombs, attack the 1st target over and over again until you know it well, then move to the next target.

Use rockets and guns and then...........

Next Mavericks................................ etc.

Then key assignments on the X52 started to become a problem, until I decided to use exactly the same as the real Hog on the stick and throttle.

This took a lot of hours, until around 68 functions had been assigned, mapped on a sheet of paper.

Next CBUs ....................

Next LGBs.....................

After I was confident with all weapons I started landing and navigation which of course was easy by this time.

It took every day for 2 weeks

That was 4 years ago and I never touched it again.

 

GL..

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I started on the A-10C having never flown a flight sim before.

I saw a Nerd³ video in which he spent 30 minutes trying to guess his was through the start-up, and that was it.

It's a steep learning curve, to be sure, but it's not impossible.

I found a start-up tutorial on youtube (there's a ton nowadays) and then did the training missions. (you have to use 1.5 for those) After that, start flying with a simple mission that has a few targets for you. The mission editor is pretty easy to use for a mission like that. I find jumping right in is a good way to find what information you need to focus your youtube/manual/forum searching.

Good luck!

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As far as I can tell through my experience, the A-10 is a very easy AC to handle. Indeed FC3 aircrafts are much simpler in avionics management, but I find much more challenging to land an F-15 than a Warthog. Very different beasts.

Regarding avionics and systems, unfortunately there are no other simpler aircrafts similar to the A-10, therefore you have to learn patiently systems one by one. But this is the fun part, in my opinion.

You can also try with a trainer - the Albatross is superb in my opnion - but avionics are very different.

Moreover there are good training campaigns, like the BFT campaign, and tons of videos to enlighten you on many aspects.

The A-10C is one of the best modules in DCS!

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I think it's perfectly fine to start with the A-10C. Sure, there are lots of systems to learn, but it's just a matter of grinding the tutorials and Youtube videos. Those will teach you the most important stuff. Once you know the systems pretty well the A-10C is one of the easiest aircraft to fly. It's super easy to land and it's quite simple to employ in a combant situation since the systems make it easier both to find the targets and hit them. Navigation is also simple with the A-10C compared to older aircraft with Tacan and RSBN etc.

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