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How best to make the leap from SP to MP?


Notso

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Hi all, I'm contemplating making the leap from offline SP only training missions and would like to stick my toe into the MP waters on a very limited basis - more like 1 on 1 or small group training missions rather than the full global war free for all servers.

 

What additional Hardware and/or Software do I need to get started? Consider me an absolute noob in this regard (I am) so don't assume I know anything about it (I don't).

 

So what do I need to have in place be able to talk to other players online? How do I meet up with them online? Is VR compatible with non-VR users, etc etc? What questions am I not asking?

 

Huge thanks in advance.

System HW: i9-9900K @5ghz, MSI 11GB RTX-2080-Ti Trio, G-Skill 32GB RAM, Reverb HMD, Steam VR, TM Warthog Hotas Stick & Throttle, TM F/A-18 Stick grip add-on, TM TFRP pedals. SW: 2.5.6 OB

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As someone playing online games since Counterstrike 1.6, i´d say the most important thing is comms. Typing while playing in order to communicate simply sucks, in MMORPG´s as well as in FPS or a flight sim. A solid headset with a decent microphone is mandatory and IMO the only additional hardware you realy need (if you´re not owning one already). As for the software, a common VoIP software is also nice to have if you don´t want to rely on the ingame voice chat. Besides Discord, SRS is very popular among DCS pilots, but you could also use skype if you´re only playing in a 1 on 1 or 2 player coop session. I personally prefer good ol´ Teamspeak 3, but i´m also a dinosaur when it comes to VoIP. All these software is for free, so you can try a few out and then decide wich one you like most.

 

As for Discord, SRS and TS3, you must join a specific server (IP is mostly displayed in server briefing or similar) while with discord and TS3 you can then join different (voice)chat rooms/channels. SRS uses frequencies to set up comms between players. If you have i.e. Overwolf installed (plugin for TS3) you can also cross-comm to other channels/rooms (useful for platoon leadership and comms between squad leaders). Skype is more of a online phone software, setting up a peer to peer connection between 2 (or more) users.

 

Cheers


Edited by VpR81

Phanteks EvolvX / Win 11 / i9 12900K / MSI Z690 Carbon / MSI Suprim RTX 3090 / 64GB G.Skill Trident Z  DDR5-6000 / 1TB PCIe 4.0 NVMe SSD / 2TB PCIe 3.0 NVMe SSD / 2TB SATA SSD / 1TB SATA SSD / Alphacool Eisbaer Aurora Pro 360 / beQuiet StraightPower 1200W

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A few things to consider:

 

There are very different types of multiplayer servers going on, and the trick is to find which ones fit you. Besides the rather prominent big servers there are smaller 'dogfight' servers featuring fighting against other players - the small size usually meaning it's 1 v 1 or small groups - there are PvE servers that focus on fighting against the AI and aerobatic servers which don't feature much combat at all.

 

Quality of connection is always a big consideration. You should probably try servers that are geographically in the same area as yourself, as the shorter connections provides a better ping. For DCS pings below 100 are usually fine, above 200 you'll start experiencing problems.

 

If a server is greyed out in your list you can't connect to it. The info field on the lower left (where the mission briefing also should be), will tell you right at the top what the problem is. Usually it runs on a map you don't have, or it requires some mods you don't have installed. If you can connect without problem, it's all fine. VR and non-VR can coexist without trouble, for example.

 

You don't need anything extra to jump into MP, really. As a first step you can probably just use the in-game chat to communicate with people. 'Comms', as people generally call any sort of voice connection, is advisable if you want to get into any more 'serious group flying', means more than occasional dogfights or any sort of complicated mission. I think VpR81 summarised the options quite well.

 

Meeting people can be as easy as just talking to someone on whatever server you happen to fly on. 'Squadrons' are groups of regulars, so to speak, who generally get things a bit more organised. I'm sure you can find one here on the forums as most of them are quite happy to find new members.

 

In conclusion: try it and have some fun. Don't get disheartened by the fact that sometimes it seems to be very complicated. You really only need to start getting all sorts of things organised if you want to expand on the experience and get deeper in the water.

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The main software (free) is SRS (simple radio), you generally need that for voice comms with other players. And then to check the server briefing for frequencies to use. Some servers basically won't let you connect without it running, some reccomend it, on others its not even really used. But I'd learn how to use it with the plane you are using.

 

The other software is discord, (chat platform), most of the major online servers have a discord channel so you can chat with other players.

 

The other thing is to make sure you know how the IFF gear in your plane works, so you don't kill friendlies. This is universally frowned upon.

 

The general types of servers are

PVP = player versus player (growling sidewinder, blueflag, others)

PVE = Players versus environment (all humans on the same side vs AI) Georgia at war is a good one to start on, and they have training server. Or the 104th servers are like this.

Acrobatics/free flight servers, pretty self explanatory

 

Many but not all servers will have plonk into a cold plane that you have to arm up and startup.

 

I'd honestly start on PVE servers, its a bit less intimidating and more congenial than a bunch of other dudes trying to kill you :).

 

Otherwise most servers will have an ATC freq and "common" freq to use. The general rule of thumb is to listen to ATC, and try not to do stupid things like take off from taxiways. The other golden rule is "don't be a dick".

 

Honestly I'd check out the GAW training server first and go from there.


Edited by Harlikwin

New hotness: I7 9700k 4.8ghz, 32gb ddr4, 2080ti, :joystick: TM Warthog. TrackIR, HP Reverb (formermly CV1)

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Thanks all, it doesn't seem quite as intimidating as I initially thought.

 

On a related question, how hard is it to set up a private server if I want to initially just fly with some friends to get used to the multiplayer environment before going into some more involved stuff?

System HW: i9-9900K @5ghz, MSI 11GB RTX-2080-Ti Trio, G-Skill 32GB RAM, Reverb HMD, Steam VR, TM Warthog Hotas Stick & Throttle, TM F/A-18 Stick grip add-on, TM TFRP pedals. SW: 2.5.6 OB

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I would say, it would be best if you find a buddy to do it with.... even someone new, who you've met online.

 

Don't be intimidated, don't be afraid to ask....

 

If people see that you are trying, they will help out !

 

But don't expect getting serious answers, if you ask questions as "How do you fly X?" or "How to do you start y aircraft?". You have to do your part.

 

Happy flying !

'Shadow'

 

Everybody gotta be offended and take it personally now-a-days

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The additional software and hardware has been covered throughly. The one thing that I learned the hard way was your skills need to meet the basic aircraft and systems . So master all the training missions and any tutorials that you can find on the aircraft and it’s systems.

If you can operate the aircraft and it’s systems without having to pause you should be golden the online squadron will teach you when to use the systems. The mission. I suggest you find a squadron that is recruiting pilots in the airframe your flying and they will teach you the correct procedures.

 

Have fun flying multiplayer

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Start off in a PvE server, going straight into something like PvP BlueFlag will be very frustrating, at least it was for me, the learning curve was steep and the skill of the other human pilots much stronger than me so I was getting killed too easily. Learn how to work in a team with other human pilots in a PvE server then transfer those skills to a PvP environment.

 

As others have mentioned being communicative is very important, also if the server has a GCI listen to his instructions and call outs, ask the team what they need to complete the objective. If you're a Hornet driver you've got a lot of tools in your toolbox maybe they need SEAD or perhaps you're in a Tomcat and they need SEAD in which case you won't be much use but you can patrol the area etc.

 

I never play in SP anymore, once you get comfortable with MP it's a totally different experience.

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I'm glad I found this post as I'm in same position, just started experimenting with multiplayer and the comms options, which I find a bit confusing. I downloaded SRS and managed to get it working (a bit) in one server but found it 'less-than-straightforward' to get the correct frequencies to listen into. I also installed TeamSpeak 3 and have a discord account. Now do you decide on a 'favourite' comms system according to the server or do you use these in parallel when flying multiplayer? Do all the additional comms work standalone outside the ATC and AWACS comms that exist in-game or can you select which to listen to?

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Just learn SRS. The issue with using all 3 systems, is that most people don't use all 3. Most servers use SRS and list the frequencies in the briefings, and if you can't run the radios on your plane, its probably best you learn that first. For the clicky planes you use the real plane radios. For FC3 planes SRS has the external interface you have to use. If frequencies aren't listed in the server brief just ask by text messaging. There are very small minority of servers that use discord or whatnot.

New hotness: I7 9700k 4.8ghz, 32gb ddr4, 2080ti, :joystick: TM Warthog. TrackIR, HP Reverb (formermly CV1)

Old-N-busted: i7 4720HQ ~3.5GHZ, +32GB DDR3 + Nvidia GTX980m (4GB VRAM) :joystick: TM Warthog. TrackIR, Rift CV1 (yes really).

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Start off in a PvE server, going straight into something like PvP BlueFlag will be very frustrating, at least it was for me, the learning curve was steep and the skill of the other human pilots much stronger than me so I was getting killed too easily. Learn how to work in a team with other human pilots in a PvE server then transfer those skills to a PvP environment.

 

As others have mentioned being communicative is very important, also if the server has a GCI listen to his instructions and call outs, ask the team what they need to complete the objective. If you're a Hornet driver you've got a lot of tools in your toolbox maybe they need SEAD or perhaps you're in a Tomcat and they need SEAD in which case you won't be much use but you can patrol the area etc.

 

I never play in SP anymore, once you get comfortable with MP it's a totally different experience.

 

Totally agree. And the other thing to remember when going into a PVE server is, you will die. ALOT at first. Human players are "good", and you will have a ton of bad habits you picked up flying against DCS AI, which is "not good". Also PVP pilots know exactly how to fly against noobs... So don't feel bad, you'll be fodder for a bit, but hopefully you will learn quickly, tacview is a good tool to learn from.

New hotness: I7 9700k 4.8ghz, 32gb ddr4, 2080ti, :joystick: TM Warthog. TrackIR, HP Reverb (formermly CV1)

Old-N-busted: i7 4720HQ ~3.5GHZ, +32GB DDR3 + Nvidia GTX980m (4GB VRAM) :joystick: TM Warthog. TrackIR, Rift CV1 (yes really).

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Harlikwin pointed this well out. There is no need to install all 3 VoIP systems, especially if your only looking into DCS. I´d even say, that the prefered software should be game related. It highly depends on the game you´re playing, wich VoIP system is more common. I use SRS (mostly, sometimes i´m doing my own buisness similar to SP) only for DCS public servers and TS3 for private DCS coop sessions (and the other games i play). I don´t have a discord account and will propably never get one. If you are only interested in DCS online, then SRS is enough to have and discord may be a useful addition, but in no way necessary.

Phanteks EvolvX / Win 11 / i9 12900K / MSI Z690 Carbon / MSI Suprim RTX 3090 / 64GB G.Skill Trident Z  DDR5-6000 / 1TB PCIe 4.0 NVMe SSD / 2TB PCIe 3.0 NVMe SSD / 2TB SATA SSD / 1TB SATA SSD / Alphacool Eisbaer Aurora Pro 360 / beQuiet StraightPower 1200W

RSEAT S1 / VPC T50 CM2 + 300mm extension + Realsimulator F18 CGRH / VPC WarBRD + TM Warthog grip / WinWing F/A-18 Super Taurus / 4x TM Cougar MFD / TM TPR / HP Reverb G2

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Harlikwin pointed this well out. There is no need to install all 3 VoIP systems, especially if your only looking into DCS. I´d even say, that the prefered software should be game related. It highly depends on the game you´re playing, wich VoIP system is more common. I use SRS (mostly, sometimes i´m doing my own buisness similar to SP) only for DCS public servers and TS3 for private DCS coop sessions (and the other games i play). I don´t have a discord account and will propably never get one. If you are only interested in DCS online, then SRS is enough to have and discord may be a useful addition, but in no way necessary.

 

Yeah quite often its common for squads to use discord or TS for "private channel" comms. Then again its just as easy to tune to a different agreed upon freq.

New hotness: I7 9700k 4.8ghz, 32gb ddr4, 2080ti, :joystick: TM Warthog. TrackIR, HP Reverb (formermly CV1)

Old-N-busted: i7 4720HQ ~3.5GHZ, +32GB DDR3 + Nvidia GTX980m (4GB VRAM) :joystick: TM Warthog. TrackIR, Rift CV1 (yes really).

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You will need to be in Open Beta for the popular multiplayer servers.

 

Thanks all for the replies. Good stuff. Is Discord a comm channel in game? Or is it a pre-mission planning & meeting place?

 

To the statement above re OB..... How do I find out if I'm on OB in Steam or Stable? I assume stable if that's the default setting as I've never set up anything specific for OB.

System HW: i9-9900K @5ghz, MSI 11GB RTX-2080-Ti Trio, G-Skill 32GB RAM, Reverb HMD, Steam VR, TM Warthog Hotas Stick & Throttle, TM F/A-18 Stick grip add-on, TM TFRP pedals. SW: 2.5.6 OB

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Thanks all for the replies. Good stuff. Is Discord a comm channel in game? Or is it a pre-mission planning & meeting place?

 

To the statement above re OB..... How do I find out if I'm on OB in Steam or Stable? I assume stable if that's the default setting as I've never set up anything specific for OB.

 

Discord is cheap/free voice comms used by clans that can't organise well enough to afford something proper like TeamSpeak ;)

Де вороги, знайдуться козаки їх перемогти.

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It also depends what are you trying to achieve. In my experience, nothing has been more valuable than finding a virtual squadron and joining them. I'm not only learning how to fly the plane properly but I'm also learning a lot of soft skills such as proper communications, teamwork, tactics. Of course it all depends on the people you get in touch with, but I'm sure I would have dropped DCS a long time ago if I hadn't crossed paths with my virtual squadron.

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To the statement above re OB..... How do I find out if I'm on OB in Steam or Stable? I assume stable if that's the default setting as I've never set up anything specific for OB.

 

If you´re in open beta, DCS is named "DCS: World Steam edition [openbeta]" in your Steam libary. In order to switch to OB, you need to right ckick on DCS, klick on properties, then on "Betas" and choose "openbeta Public beta versions" for v2.5.6 or "openbeta the last 2.5.5" for the last version prior to 2.5.6.

Phanteks EvolvX / Win 11 / i9 12900K / MSI Z690 Carbon / MSI Suprim RTX 3090 / 64GB G.Skill Trident Z  DDR5-6000 / 1TB PCIe 4.0 NVMe SSD / 2TB PCIe 3.0 NVMe SSD / 2TB SATA SSD / 1TB SATA SSD / Alphacool Eisbaer Aurora Pro 360 / beQuiet StraightPower 1200W

RSEAT S1 / VPC T50 CM2 + 300mm extension + Realsimulator F18 CGRH / VPC WarBRD + TM Warthog grip / WinWing F/A-18 Super Taurus / 4x TM Cougar MFD / TM TPR / HP Reverb G2

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If you´re in open beta, DCS is named "DCS: World Steam edition [openbeta]" in your Steam libary. In order to switch to OB, you need to right ckick on DCS, klick on properties, then on "Betas" and choose "openbeta Public beta versions" for v2.5.6 or "openbeta the last 2.5.5" for the last version prior to 2.5.6.

 

Awesome, thank you. I’m definitely stable then as I don’t have the other label. And I wasn’t sure how to switch.

 

Does the Steam OB get the updates at the same time as the standalone DCS get them? Or are they delayed also? If so, what’s the lag time? Thanks again.

System HW: i9-9900K @5ghz, MSI 11GB RTX-2080-Ti Trio, G-Skill 32GB RAM, Reverb HMD, Steam VR, TM Warthog Hotas Stick & Throttle, TM F/A-18 Stick grip add-on, TM TFRP pedals. SW: 2.5.6 OB

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Steam udates come without delay i think, but i´m not every day online and therefore can´t be 100% sure. But there have been delays in the past. Last time with 2.5.6 wich caused issues on steam installs and therefore had a 4 or 5 day delay.

 

Not sure if you are aware of what´s the reason for beeing on OB for MP. The reason is, that most (but not all) public servers running OB and this is mostly a different DCS version than stable. After stable has been updated you are also able to join OB servers while you are running a stable install, until OB gets the next update. So if you want to play on public servers, an OB install is highly recommended. If you´re focusing on private sessions with just a buddy or a few ppl, OB is not neccessarily needed as long as the other users running a stable install (or OB of the same version as stable) as well. Just wanted to clear out, that MP is not restricted to OB.


Edited by VpR81

Phanteks EvolvX / Win 11 / i9 12900K / MSI Z690 Carbon / MSI Suprim RTX 3090 / 64GB G.Skill Trident Z  DDR5-6000 / 1TB PCIe 4.0 NVMe SSD / 2TB PCIe 3.0 NVMe SSD / 2TB SATA SSD / 1TB SATA SSD / Alphacool Eisbaer Aurora Pro 360 / beQuiet StraightPower 1200W

RSEAT S1 / VPC T50 CM2 + 300mm extension + Realsimulator F18 CGRH / VPC WarBRD + TM Warthog grip / WinWing F/A-18 Super Taurus / 4x TM Cougar MFD / TM TPR / HP Reverb G2

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Steam udates come without delay i think, but i´m not every day online and therefore can´t be 100% sure. But there have been delays in the past. Last time with 2.5.6 wich caused issues on steam installs and therefore had a 4 or 5 day delay.

 

Not sure if you are aware of what´s the reason for beeing on OB for MP. The reason is, that most (but not all) public servers running OB and this is mostly a different DCS version than stable. After stable has been updated you are also able to join OB servers while you are running a stable install, until OB gets the next update. So if you want to play on public servers, an OB install is highly recommended. If you´re focusing on private sessions with just a buddy or a few ppl, OB is not neccessarily needed as long as the other users running a stable install (or OB of the same version as stable) as well. Just wanted to clear out, that MP is not restricted to OB.

 

That does make sense, thank you. I’ve been wanting to get into OB anyway so I could play with the new toys earlier that everyone talks about, even while in SP.

 

Edit: before I do switch over to OB, has the 2.5.6 performance issues been solved? If not, then I might stay on stable for a bit until it is.

System HW: i9-9900K @5ghz, MSI 11GB RTX-2080-Ti Trio, G-Skill 32GB RAM, Reverb HMD, Steam VR, TM Warthog Hotas Stick & Throttle, TM F/A-18 Stick grip add-on, TM TFRP pedals. SW: 2.5.6 OB

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That does make sense, thank you. I’ve been wanting to get into OB anyway so I could play with the new toys earlier that everyone talks about, even while in SP.

 

Edit: before I do switch over to OB, has the 2.5.6 performance issues been solved? If not, then I might stay on stable for a bit until it is.

 

I mean it runs. It doesn't run as good as 2.5.5... I'm seeing lower framerates overall but for me its playable.

New hotness: I7 9700k 4.8ghz, 32gb ddr4, 2080ti, :joystick: TM Warthog. TrackIR, HP Reverb (formermly CV1)

Old-N-busted: i7 4720HQ ~3.5GHZ, +32GB DDR3 + Nvidia GTX980m (4GB VRAM) :joystick: TM Warthog. TrackIR, Rift CV1 (yes really).

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Jump on the Dogfight Dogfight Dogfight server and you will have a blast! My buddy (DaveOcean) and myself (DW2020) are on their most evenings and there is always plenty of action particularly later in the evening.

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Jump on the Dogfight Dogfight Dogfight server and you will have a blast! My buddy (DaveOcean) and myself (DW2020) are on their most evenings and there is always plenty of action particularly later in the evening.

 

I realy doubt he will have a blast, as he is totally new to MP. To get the best experience when starting with MP is to start with a PvE server, as he won´t get killed all the time and will have less frustrating moments and therefore more confidence to learn the MP related stuff (comms, teamwork, tactics). Better would even be private sessions with experienced players, but this is realatively difficult to achieve without knowing some people or joining a virtual wing. Private sessions are definately the most fun of all MP experiences, but as i don´t want to join a wing i´m restricted to RL friends. So public PvE servers are mostly the best way to get into DCS MP. After beeing familiar with the MP specific procedures, i would suggest to start with PvP...

Phanteks EvolvX / Win 11 / i9 12900K / MSI Z690 Carbon / MSI Suprim RTX 3090 / 64GB G.Skill Trident Z  DDR5-6000 / 1TB PCIe 4.0 NVMe SSD / 2TB PCIe 3.0 NVMe SSD / 2TB SATA SSD / 1TB SATA SSD / Alphacool Eisbaer Aurora Pro 360 / beQuiet StraightPower 1200W

RSEAT S1 / VPC T50 CM2 + 300mm extension + Realsimulator F18 CGRH / VPC WarBRD + TM Warthog grip / WinWing F/A-18 Super Taurus / 4x TM Cougar MFD / TM TPR / HP Reverb G2

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