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Why can't we get a freelook with centered cursor to click buttons?


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The current control scheme is pretty unfriendly to users without a Head Tracking or VR Headset who want to look around with mouse.

There are 2 separate modes for the mouse - freelook mode in which the mouse is used for looking around and cursor mode in which you can click buttons in the cockpit - which you can toggle between with Alt+C by default.

However during a fight for example this is pretty uncomfortable and impractical, because you have to constatly switch the modes back and forth. And it doesn't help that now one click is not enough, you have to double-click.

 

Why can't we simply get a mode in which the mouse controls the view and there is a cursor that stays always in the middle of the screen, so that you chose which button to click by actually looking at it, instead of moving the cursor across the screen?

Simmilarly to how it works here

 

This would mean you would need just one mode and there would be no switching, because you would be able to look around and click buttons at the same time.


Edited by Youda
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  • Youda changed the title to Why can't we get a freelook with centered cursor to click buttons?

I notice that many players in civilian flight sims, where checking six is not such a big deal, don’t use head tracking so much. Probably because it makes the clickable cockpit easier to use without your view constantly moving. My guess is that’s the intent in DCS. With a combined free look and mouse cursor, your view would jump around with every button click. 
The solution for this is of course to use head tracking. There are even free DIY methods as well as TrackIR. 

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That's all understandable, but why can't we simply have a choice? Also "just buy TrackIR" is not really an answer. ED themselfs claimed in their promo video that such things are not required and the game is fully playable with just keyboard and mouse. So it would be nice if they lived up to their promisses and made it little more mouse friendly.

 

16 hours ago, SharpeXB said:

Probably because it makes the clickable cockpit easier to use without your view constantly moving.

Also, this is not true. In most jets you have important buttons on the side-panels so you can't fully control your plane without looking around, there's just too much to fit in a single field of view.


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57 minutes ago, Youda said:

ED themselfs claimed in their promo video that such things are not required and the game is fully playable with just keyboard and mouse.

“Fully playable” is a bit of a stretch. Yes it’s possible but too frustrating to be worthwhile. Flying the planes with a keyboard would be nearly impossible. 

59 minutes ago, Youda said:

That's all understandable, but why can't we simply have a choice?

I agree with your suggestion though. I don’t see why you shouldn’t be able to toggle that feature on and off as desired. 

1 hour ago, Youda said:

 Also "just buy TrackIR" is not really an answer.

There are low cost or even free DIY options for head tracking too. Honestly it’s completely essential for being able to play well in DCS

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1 hour ago, Youda said:

Also, this is not true. In most jets you have important buttons on the side-panels so you can't fully control your plane without looking around, there's just too much to fit in a single field of view.

If you watch how most people in civ flight sims do this is that have view controls assigned to a joystick, pan or snap views to certain panels. So they can look at the panel and then click on it. 

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There's a bunch of "false advertising" in DCS promo materials, which I think is a relic from the times when ED had a different philosophy, one that gave us FC3 and the Su-25T, as well as the "game" avionics and easy comms (things that, today, generally don't work very well). FC3 aircraft are very much playable without any sort of headtracking, and they can be flown with keyboard and mouse. Your SA will be down the drain, your inputs will be all over the place and you won't stand a snowball's chance in hell in a real fight, but you can take off and land, maybe hit some ground targets, too.

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2 hours ago, Dragon1-1 said:

There's a bunch of "false advertising" in DCS promo materials, which I think is a relic from the times when ED had a different philosophy, one that gave us FC3 and the Su-25T, as well as the "game" avionics and easy comms (things that, today, generally don't work very well). FC3 aircraft are very much playable without any sort of headtracking, and they can be flown with keyboard and mouse. Your SA will be down the drain, your inputs will be all over the place and you won't stand a snowball's chance in hell in a real fight, but you can take off and land, maybe hit some ground targets, too.

Well it’s not false. You can play DCS with a keyboard and mouse. It’s possible. It’s just not ideal at all. Really these M&K controls are there for people to maybe try out the free game. Any player with more than a passing interest would go buy a joystick at least.

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Hence the quotes. It's technically possible, but hardly practical. There's a lot of material advertising "accessible" features fitting the FC3 philosophy that had been abandoned in more recent years.

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6 hours ago, Youda said:

ED themselfs claimed in their promo video that such things are not required and the game is fully playable with just keyboard and mouse.

 

Isn't it? It's hell of a damn pain in the arse... but it's 100% playable with keyboard and mouse only.

 

Realtalk: a proper setup really is mandatory for DCS, even if it's not in the minimum specs for technical reasons. This means a HOTAS system and rudders plus some kind of 6DOF device.

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If you fly modern FBW jets (especially the Viper), you can get away with not having rudder pedals, just twist handle or even keyboard for taxiing. Rudder is very useful in a few specific moments, but can usually be left alone. Of course, in older jets and especially WWII props, it's mandatory.

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13 minutes ago, Dragon1-1 said:

If you fly modern FBW jets (especially the Viper), you can get away with not having rudder pedals, just twist handle or even keyboard for taxiing. Rudder is very useful in a few specific moments, but can usually be left alone. Of course, in older jets and especially WWII props, it's mandatory.

 

Oh, i really wouldn't want to do a crosswind landing even in the Viper with just keyboard rudder input 😉 But yeah: twist handle or rudder, something that isn't just a button press for rudders.... my first HOTAS was a TM T.Flight which got that extra rudder paddle on the throttle. Worked quite fine too 🙂

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A proper crabbed approach doesn't use the rudder, and it is the only way that's permitted for the Viper IRL. You only need it at the very end, to dump sideways speed component, and even that isn't a necessary step. The Viper is quite unique in that outside of wingovers and ground handling, you are, in fact, not supposed to touch the rudder at all, because it's fragile and the automated system does a pretty good job. 

 

The Hornet, likewise, with the added bonus that you're very rarely landing with a crosswind, anyway, and only on land bases. Its rudders are more sturdy, and the high alpha fighting style does call for their use more often than the Viper's high speed one, but even then, it's situational. Mirage 2000 is the same as the Viper in that regard. Analog rudder is useful, but if you stick to FBW birds you can live without it.

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