Monday, August 10, 2009

DCS Black Shark 1.0.1: Taking the Patch for a Ride

As I mentioned in a previous entry, DCS Black Shark has been patched to version 1.0.1.

One of the things I was most waiting for is the new trim implementation. The new 1.0.1 trimmer waits for you to re-center the controls before starting to take your inputs again instead of giving you just one second as in the previous version.

I took my 1.0.1 Black Shark for a ride in order to test this new trimmer implementation.

It works like a charm. My control of the bird is more natural and precise than before. Only thing I found a bit disorienting is the effect of the trimmer on the yaw. There will be some re-learning, but overall I'm really happy.

Also, when you press and release the trimmer button there is a metallic sound (maybe the electromagnets holding the controls in place?) that resembles heavy coins thrown into a can. Pretty neat metallic feeling into that.

To this under-skilled virtual pilot, nothing is more challenging than landing the Black Shark in a FARP. No other maneuver is better to test if my control of the helicopter is easier after the patch.

Coming in high (~500 m) and relatively fast (~100 kmh). Can you distinguish the rectangular form of the FARP, below the speed indicator? Click the image for a better view

The way I land on FARPS is a bit rough in the edges, so bear with me.

I set the collective and trim the controls for a 3-5 m/s descent with a forward speed of ~100 km/h. A couple of hundred meters off the FARP, I flare the helicopter until the forward speed drops to around 20 km/h.

After the flare, I use the nose pole of the Black Shark as a visual reference. I try to keep the landing spot between the tip and the base of the pole. Click the image for a better view

When the helicopter is trimmed correctly after the flare, all it takes to land is collective and small cyclic inputs! And the new trimmer implementation, off course ... :)

Right after touchdown, pull the stick a little and trim it so you avoid forward movement. Don't forget the parking brake! Click the image for a better view

The landing shown above accomplished without sweating or cursing as during the pre-patch days.


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