Michael has been an avid gamer and part time writer in more decades than he cares to remember.
What is DCS World?
I am so glad that you asked! DCS stands for Digital Combat Simulator. Several A+ grade military flight and combat simulators have been released under this banner, including DCS A10-c Warthog, Black Shark 1 & 2, P-51D Mustang and DCS Combined arms.
So, what is DCS world then? Well, think of it as glue that holds all of these great flight simulators together in one easy to use common interface. You download and install DCS World first, then you can add in the extra titles as and when you want to as modules, instead of having to have separate installs for all of them.
Now, then, did I mention that DCS World is free and comes with an awesome jet to fly in a series of missions and a campaign?
This product works with TrackIR 5 head motion sensing view controls, follow the link for a full review.
A Roundup of other combat simulators can be read by following this link
Remember, if you need a sweet Flight simulator joystick, or HOTAS, to fly with, check out my review!!
UPDATE AS OF AUGUST 2013 - DCS World is now available on STEAM, which is awesome news!
Introducing the SU-25T
Also known as the Frogfoot, this amazingly tough jet is similar in role and philosophy to the American A-10. Designed from the outset for battlefield survivability, the pilot sits in a "bathtub" of titanium for protection.
Rest assured, this plane may be lacking the 22 foot long Gatling cannon of the A-10, but it is armed to the teeth with laser and optically guided bombs and missiles, cluster bombs and cannon. This is a tank-buster with teeth, and is also capable of fulfilling precision bombing as well as air defence suppression with sophisticated anti radiation missiles.
Not only this, but it is fast as well, and surprisingly maneuverable at reduced weapon loads.
DCS World Overview
Installing DCS World
Installation is simplicity itself. Simply download the DCS World torrent (fear not, it is legal and from the company very own link) and follow the installation guidelines. There is DRM to talk about, when you add in extra modules they will need to be activated with a serial number. You only get a limited number of activations and de-activations. However, in practise I have found the company to be very willing to reset the activations when needed by simply sending an email to them.
Features of DCS World
Let us just remind ourselves of the cost of this. Nothing! Worth remembering isn't it. Now, onto the features.
- Mission and campaign editor
- Huge number of air land and see units on both sides of the conflict
- Advanced AI
- Fast mission generator
- Dynamic weather and changing seasons
- Training missions to ease you into the art of flying the SU-25T
- Mission replay, great for analysis of your mistakes or making YouTube videos
- Pilot records and logbook
- DCS A-10 The most realistic simulation of the A-10 ever made. A stunning realisation of this magnificent ground pounding tank-buster.
- DCS: Ka-40 Black Shark 2. The deadly single seat Russian attack helicopter. Amazingly detailed simulation that needs to be experienced to be believed.
- DCS: P-51D Mustang. The single most realistic WWII fighter plane simulation ever.
- DCS: Combined Arms. Oddball in this company. It allows you control over ground forces in this otherwise exclusively air based simulation.
- Flaming Cliffs 3. Adds several other planes and campaigns to the mix. Still in paid for Beta, none of the FC3 stuff is up to the complexity of the DCS modules, but that is a great plus point for someone just starting to get into combat flight simulation!
You can add one, all or none of these modules, and they are all cross compatible, meaning that somebody flying the SU-25T from DCS World can fly against or with someone in DCS Black Shark or even FC3!
Links in this section will take you to more in depth reviews of the relevant modules.
This is a quality piece of software. Even without the extra modules, this is simply amazing. The SU-25T is one of my favourite jets of all time, and it is brilliantly realised here, with so much content you feel guilty for getting it for free.
This only goes to show the confidence that DCS have in there Digital Combat Simulator, that they would give you so much for free. Stop reading this and go and download it now! With such a great combat flight simulator free, there is NO EXCUSE for piracy any more, go get this one and enjoy it!
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Rating from Zakkers
Michael Murchie (author) from Parts Unknown on November 16, 2014:
Oh look, here comes the internet's famous "Mr Anonymous" hiding behind his computer screen, ready to have a pop at anyone he or she feels superior to.
Firstly, I am not, not have I ever called myself a journalist. I am an amateur writer who does it for the fun and occasional profit. I love these games and like to share my enthusiasm. Secondly, I didn't go to 5th grade as I am not American, but thanks for being arrogant enough to think that the whole world is.
Anonymous on November 15, 2014:
"This only goes to show the confidence that DCS have in there Digital Combat Simulator"
Wow, you call yourself a journalist and you made this 5th grade english mistake?
MachadoJ on January 12, 2014:
Nice review for a great game, congrats!
Peter on August 05, 2013:
I've just downloaded DCS World .. but was overwhelmed by the complexity of different controls and functions. Someone will have to invest a lot of time to it. But actually that's what a real Flight Sim is :-)
Nice Blog anyway. Was reading your Joystick Reviews and stumbled upon your other posts.