Eagle Dynamics’ DCS World is the pre-eminent combat simulator, focusing mainly on aerial combat aircraft spanning the periods of World War 2, to the Cold War era, to modern jet aircraft. Flight sim enthusiasts are passionate supporters of the software, which comes free to play with one map, and two playable aircraft (the TF-51 Mustang trainer, and SU-25T Frogfoot). By purchasing modules created both by Eagle Dynamics as well as various third parties, one can experience the rush of a guns-only furball with an F-86 Sabre, or a BVR missile encounter in an F-14 Tomcat, or lay waste on armored ground units with the GAU-8 on the A-10C Thunderbolt II, just to name a few. Aircraft range from “study sims” with fully clickable cockpits, to the large variety of modern day fighters available in the “Flaming Cliffs” modules. Along with aircraft and helicopters, through the Combined Arms addon, one could take control of a tank, a naval destroyer, a JTAC spotter, or an AA artillery to further dictate the outcome of war.
The experience is taken to a whole new level when played multiplayer with a group of sim enthusiasts. Witnessing for the first time a carrier deck buzzing with Navy fighters simultaneously trapping and taking off from the steam catapults is a treat. Similarly, watching the battlefield come to life with explosions from your wingman’s AGM-65 during a deep strike interdiction does not provide the same level of immersion when playing with AI computer pilots. The immersion is further enhanced by the use of the SimpleRadioStandalone software, which brings real radio (voice comms) functionality straight into the cockpit, with deep DCS integration.