Wednesday, June 7, 2017

A friend used to have Combat Flight Simulator for his PC

We would spend entire nights on that PC, first in the pacific Theater then in the European theater. he also had later versions where you could land on carriers with anything from F15s to F4Us to Lear jets and Biplanes.

When doing the pacific theater I usually flew as Japanese, Takahashi was my pilots name. Now I can tell you two facts, first, Actual flight simulators using a stick and the buttons is harder than it would seem. Second, Takahashi sucked. The simple act of dive bombing a ship wasn't so simple. part of the problem was that there are no "actual" senses, so without looking at the gauges during a dive you couldn't tell if you were inverted. Takahashi had an issue where you keep changing your angle of attack to stay on target only to find out you are upside down. You release the bomb and it rolls off your wing into the sea. Secondly I had a problem with the pull out, quite often I would make the run, driop the bomb and the accumulated speed would put my plane straight into the sea after crossing the ship.

It was fun to play though, I remember showing my freind how to strafe a field, I opened fire destroying fuel tanks, as each one exploded I would fly through the flames, still firing for the next tank in the row, as I cleared the last tanks flames and smoke I found myself flying straight into a hanger...and dying. Takahashi died A LOT.

Not being just a game, and it was a true simulator, you had to figure out your course, make corrections, watch your fuel, watch your ammo, and then find your way home using coordinates and then land your plane. I was low on fuel at one point, found the airfield, landed, taxied and then tried to shut down. The computer wouldn't let me shut down. It kept giving me a message that I couldn't land there. Finally we looked at teh map to find out why and it turned out that Japanese flying Ace Takahashi was trying to park his zero in front of a United States Army Air Corp hanger...oops, wrong field, wrong island.

Simulator let you fly just about anything that flew during the war.

the first time my friend showed me how to use the game, he was flipping through the keyboard views, forward, left, right, back, mirror, and as he came back to forward view a Japanese zero flashed by over his head, the windshield was shot out, oil flowing up what was left of it and instantly in to a spin. "Oh, that's you do it huh?"  I learned quickly not to judge others.

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