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User interface and defaults wish list


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As a hardcore simmer I'm reasonably pleased with the advanced models I tried so far, even though I have to admit that modern A/C such as A-10 and Ka-50 are a notch or two over my head (but I'll catch up, eventually).


I know nothing about programming, so don't be too hard on me if my requests are impossible or extremely hard to implement: I'm only listing what I would like to have, but I realize that some of those things may be a lot easier said than done.

That being said, let's see my personal wishlist (perhaps better described as "whine-list")


Being a 99% online player, I think I'll mention some things that IMO could be improved in that area:

- Listing servers by ping does make sense, but if you're trying to find one particular server in the list you never know where to look because they move around all the time as ping changes.

Possible solutions:

*ability to bookmark servers

*ability to choose listing by ping, by name (alphabetical), by location, et.c. also, it'd be nice to have filters by plane set, by weapons on/off, you name it.


-Having to leave the server to change any settings or assignments is a fairly huge PITA.

Possible solution:

*ability to change settings/assignments on the fly. Where too hard/impossible to implement in-flight changes, making it possible between flights without having to leave the server would still be a great improvment.


Autorudder and take-off assist should be available only in "game" mode (which I'm completely uninterested in), while "sim" mode should have no such options and no external views either.

However, as a second best, I would say that server settings for autorudder and take-off assist would be OK (assuming that A/C icons already are. I have no idea because my icons are off, which IMO is the only possible option if you want a sim and not a game)


If for some reason it is decided that takeoff assist in sim mode should be available, then it should at least be set to zero by default.

Having it to 100% by default may be a good idea in game mode, but definitely not in sim mode.


OK, all you have to do is drag a slider, but not everyone knows about it when they first start playing DCS. That's exactly what happened to me, and I must confess that I was more than a little annoyed when I understood what happened: people were talking about how hard it was to take off in the Mustang, and I was like, what? what's the big deal?

Then I found out about take off assist, disabled it, and then I had to start over because most of what I'd learned that far was wrong.


As for user interface:

- I understand the need to have different key/axis assignments for different A/C, but there are a lot of those assignments that we use on all planes, and having to set up each plane from scratch is another PITA we would happily skip (or at least, I would)

Possible solution:

* an "apply to all" option when setting up controls/assignments. Clicking that button would apply that same assignment to all the A/C you already have, and default future ones to it.

Single A/C assignments could still be changed afterwards.

A very nice 'finesse' could be to have three buttons: "apply to all A/C", "Apply to all fixed wings ", "apply to all rotorwings".


A "lock" option would be nice, too. After setting up a plane that needs special configuration, you could select "lock", and then it wouldn't be affected by changes made by "apply to all".

Then of course you'd need a list of aircraft in the main controls setup page, with checkboxes for lock/unlock and an "unlock all" button.

... and I suspect that it's getting waaaaaay too complex... but the point was to throw in some ideas, maybe there's something actually feasible among all the crazy stuff.


- Currently, when multiple game controller are detected, the system assigns bank/roll/pitch/throttle and a few more to all of them, sometimes even assigning non-existing axes (!)

Possible solution:

*At the first start only, make a a box pop up asking what game controller is the stick, and apply the defaults only to that one, leaving axes and buttons untouched on all other game controllers.


A more advanced idea (no idea how feasible) would be a "wizard" kind of thing that lists all the available game controllers with a drop-down menu for each of them, where users could select "bank/pitch", "rudder", "throttle", "other".

Multiple selections should be possible, too.

That way, a user with a twist-handle joystick could select both "bank/pitch"" and "rudder" for it, or even "bank/pitch", "rudder", and "throttle" if s/he wants to have them all there.

All of that, if more than one game controller was detected. If there's only one game controller, the system would automatically try to assign as much as possible to that one, without bothering to pop up a window.


Also, as long as I've been playing flight sims, I've always found that the only joystick button default that most users keep is button zero for the guns. Almost everyone changes all other button assignements (and some change the main guns button, too).

Therefore, I would suggest to leave all joystick buttons unassigned except for the usual 0=fire all guns.


Another thing that could be improved is the overall reliability of online servers: planes "rubberbanding" all over the place, players being kicked off their planes becuse their speed was registered at 16.000 knots, sudden disconnections, screen freezings... OK, I realize that at least in some cases the problem may be on the user's end, and anyways, I'm assuming that you're aware of the problem and working on it, so I'm cutting the bad-server-whining part.


Besides the relatively small problems that I have pointed out, I find DCS a very good simulation. I never flew any of the featured A/C IRL but I think we have the most accurate flight simulation that we can run on a home PC, and it's still improving.


I'm not going to talk about the weather system because I don't have enough experience in DCS to be a judge. And besides, for some reason the people who run the servers tend to set wind speed and turbulence to values unrealistically close to zero.

Personally, I think that a landing with no wind is like a pizza with no cheese, but that's a matter of opinions.


One last small note: the power line wires are way too thick!

IRL you can barely see them if you're low and slow enough. A little bit higher and faster, and you don't see them at all (unless they have those red and white balls that are put there for the specific purpose of making them visible)

Common practice is, if you see the poles of a power- or telephone line, always assume the wires are there too, even if you can't see them.


Therefore, IMO the power lines modeled in DCS should have much thinner wires, barely visible at close distance and completely invisible from farther off (say a couple of miles in average/goodish visibility conditions).

And of course, invisible power lines should still be pretty solid if you fly into them.


OK, that was all for now.

I hope I gave you at least some good ideas.

Thanks for reading,



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