I lift off, my wings set to the sky.
Arise from ashes, and now I fly.
Through flames of war,
I have been reborn.
It’s my time,
I have made it mine.
When soaring high above my enemies,
I understand the things you see in me.
To vanquish those who choose to fight,
I’ll bring peace before the night.
The clear white jet steam scars the deep blue sky.
I pull ahead, spread my wings and fly.
Akula’s Sukhoi T-50 in Ace Combat Assault Horizon.
It’s basically the livery of real life T-50-1, otherwise known as 51 Blue, but with the Shark mouth decals.
Personally, I wish the shark mouth was optional for accuracy and because it’s so distinctive to Markov, but oh well.
This aircraft is available in Ace Combat 3D Cross Rumble (Assault Horizon Legacy) without the shark mouth and even in the blue/yellow primer.
Lockheed Martin updated Prepar3D to v2.2 in the last couple of days, so here’s some screenshots of it in action using the Avro Vulcan by Iris Simulations.
Photoscenery covering the entirety of Arizona by MegaScenery and HD cloud, sky etc by REX.
Story goes that in the late 70’s, an RAF crew actually did fly a Vulcan through the Grand Canyon. Not realising the airspace within the canyon itself was off limits until after the fact.
For all the Garrus fans out there.
Screenshots were taken at 5x5 1080p tiles, making the full resolution 9600x5400 with 16Q CSAA.
These were then downscaled to between 2K and 4K resolution, depending on how I cropped the shot cropped from 16:9.
Many textures are vastly enhanced by the “Mass Effect 1 Updated/Improved Textures Mod”.
On the downside, in order to make tiled screenshots work it is vital to disable the games vignette effect. This can only be done by disabling all post-processing effects, which includes a number of lighting ones.
The whole F-35 family in Prepar3D v2.1
Lockheed Martin provide an F-35A with even the basic “Academic” license ($59.99 and is actually provided for real-world training. The EULA for Prepar3D actually precludes using the simulator for ‘entertainment’).
The maker of the F-35A that Lockheed provides has also released the F-35A/B/C for FSX and Prepar3D as freeware.
3rd pic is ZM135, Britain’s first F-35. The UK took ownership in July 2012 for testing and evaluation.
As a point of interest, XM135 was the registration of the first production English Electric Lightning F1, the UK’s first Mach 2 jet. XM135 first flew in 1959 and is currently preserved at the Imperial War Museum, Duxford Airfield.
British Engineering Icons of the 1980’s in Gaming
British Aerospace Sea Harrier FRS.Mk 1
Although it flew earlier, the SHAR wasn’t declared operational until 1981.
Just one year later it was deployed as in integral part of the British task force to reclaim the Falkland Islands (which were invaded by Argentina 32 years ago this very day).
Despite being a subsonic, strictly Within Visual Range dogfighter going up against Mach 2 and BVR capable Mirage IIIs, the little jump-jet excelled. The war could not have been won without the Harrier.
Scoring at least 20 confirmed air-to-air victories without a single loss in air combat, the SHAR is (somewhat unexpectedly) the second most successful fighter aircraft in history.
Only the F-15 Eagle has shot down more aircraft, again without any being shot down by an enemy aircraft (although both F-15’s and Sea Harriers have been shot down by ground fire, such as Anti Aircraft Artillery (AAA) or Surface to Air Missiles (SAMs)).
The Sea Harrier was the first Harrier intended to be a fighter, including the fitting of a radar and a raised canopy to improve visibility.
Being based on the first generation of Harrier airframe with smaller, more sharply swept back wings, it is almost 100mph faster than the AV-8B Harrier II.
The updated Sea Harrier FA.2, with a much improved BVR radar and AMRAAM capability, appeared in the Konami game “Air Force Delta” (known as Deadly Skies in Europe) for the Sega Dreamcast as a playable aircraft.
The SHAR FA.2 also appeared in Ace Combat 5 as an AI-only aircraft for the Yuktobanians, notably in the mission Rendezvous, ambushing the 3rd Osean Naval Fleet.
These screenshots were taken in Lockheed Martin’s Prepar3D v2.1 flight simulator, which is essentially a vastly improved version of Microsofts ESP simulator.
A discontinued Microsoft project for a version of Flight Simulator X certified for training use which Lockheed Martin subsequently bought from Microsoft and have continued to develop.
Version 2 introduces a DirectX 11 only engine, unlike FSX/ESP’s DX9 engine (and broken DX10 ‘preview’ mode).
The Sea Harrier itself is from Wilco’s Harrier Jump Jet package for Microsoft Flight Simulator X, but is compatible with P3D and includes the Sea Harrier FRS.Mk 1 and Harrier GR.Mk 3.
Zone Of Endless.
An Artificial Intelligence program initiated by the Belkan Greymen and Gründer Industries that covertly gathered data during the 1997 Usean Coup d’etat.
There is no ADF-1 Falken in Assault Horizon, but the Shinden II works as a nice looking substitute IMO.
It is suggested that the Usean Rebels captured the Z.O.E. prototypes, including the ADF-01 FALKEN.
However, I would propose that they were actually still under the control of the Belkans and simply mascurading as Usean rebel forces.
Consider if you will that the Usean rebel pilots don’t seem to know anything about them, which is particularly highlighted when the Z.O.E. F/A-18E Super Hornet appears during the engagement between the Scarface and Cocoon Squadrons.
The leader of Cocoon Squadron, Camilla “Catwalk” Almeida specifically asks if the Z.O.E. aircraft is with the allied forces. The only response is that it is using a Rebel IFF code, but that alone does not mean it is actually operated by them.
So why is Z.O.E., and by extension the Belkans, so interested in Phoenix?
I would put forth the possibility that Phoenix could, in fact, be Cipher.
The origins of the Z.O.E. program is in the data recovered from the dogfight between Cipher and Larry “Solo-Wing Pixy” Folke at the end of Ace Combat Zero.
Cipher subsequently disappeared completely after the Belkan War, as if he never existed.
The games narrator even states during the ending that its doubtful he actually existed at all.
That’s actually unusual for an Ace Combat protagonist.
There are no doubts that Mobius 1, Garuda 1 or Gryphon 1 existed and even continued to serve following the end of their respective games (Blaze and the Razgriz is a bit more ambiguous, but that’s all part of the story in itself).
It would not be beyond the realms of possibility that the battle with his former wingman and buddy left Cipher, aka the Demon Lord, troubled enough to abandon this identity.
Enter “Phoenix”. A skilled and experienced mercenary pilot who appears almost immediately after Cipher vanishes.
The call sign itself means rebirth.
Now Cipher was possibly the greatest ace to have ever flown the skies of Strangereal. His track record against the elite squadrons of the Belkan Air Force, “A World Without Boundaries” and taking out Solo-Wing Pixy’s ADFX-02 Morgan in a lowly F-15C.
Feats that call into question the achievements of the other protagonists in the series.
Z.O.E. needed data from the greatest aces, data that had it’s origins with Cipher.
If the Belkan’s realised that Cipher = Phoenix, then it would make even more sense for the Z.O.E. to go out of it’s way to engage Phoenix and continue gathering data from the pilot that crushed the best that the Belkan Air Force had to offer.
Yet it was never enough to beat the original.
Just a theory
It is mandatory that you listen to this when I post anything to do with the RAH-66.
Been sitting on these screenshots for a while (I have a big ol’ backlog).
Particularly fond of the top one. The Comanche looks good, but it looks much better with the weapons bays open.
I hope that an option is added to fit the stub wings in the future, either in an official update or in a mod (as well as being able to use Hellfires)
More SimCity pics.
Now that there is a proper offline mode with update 10, mods are starting to be released at a slightly greater pace.
Though it would be kinda cool to start a private region with some people online and play it ‘properly’.
ARMA 3 with UK Forces mod. The AW159 Hellcat helicopter (Future Lynx) is a separate mod.
It’s Saturday, so have a Super Bug.
F/A-18F recreation of an Aggressor livery that, in real life, is applied to USMC F/A-18B 162402, nose number 400.
Formally of VFA-125 ‘Rough Raiders’, its now now part of VFA-122 ‘Flying Eagles’ and known affectionately as the Green Hornet.
All screenshots taken at 3K and downscaled to 1080p
And it’s a… well… it’s a train.
Insert your well known internet meme here.
I was very kindly gifted Train Simulator 2014 on Steam, where it’s currently very heavily discounted.
I would not recommend the core game at full price as it barely has any content.
But the Steam Edition is currently £6.99 which adds 3 routes and half a dozen trains over the core game.
Now I’m not an expert on trains nor a train spotter, but I understand this is designated a British Rail Class 395 which were built by Hitachi, is one of the UK’s most modern trains and is used on “High Speed 1”, the stretch of 140mph track between London and the UK end of the Channel Tunnel (thank you wiki)
It’s hardly flight simulator, but train simulator (Railworks 4) shouldn’t be confused with the waves of ghastly sims that have flooded the PC world.
There is real effort and community behind it.
Though that doesn’t mean certain things like the people walking on stations aren’t laughable.
Nor is it as simple as you might think. All kinds of rail safety features are simulated along with a scoring system, so it’s actually a genuine challenge to achieve a perfect result.
Though I can’t say the simulation of all this systems are 100% reliable, I will concede I don’t know the ins and outs either.
One of the most tense and nerve-wracking games I ever played.
Though even back then the affect was somewhat lessoned by the poor graphics, which could be called Dreamcast standard at best, awful 3D clipping and wonky AI.
But it does capture the essence of what unsettles us about being alone in the ocean. Which is that it is impossible to be fully aware of everything around you.
In particular that you are completely vulnerable from below, something completely at odds with out solid-land based instincts.
Combined with generally low visibility in all directions and a vague ‘radar’ system based on your heart beat, which becomes more rapid as a shark nears you but yet with no indication of where its coming from and you have a surprisingly scary game.
If this was remade with proper AAA quality graphics, and just as importantly animation, you might have a surprise hit on your hands.
(btw, I’m actually fascinated in Sharks and have been for 24 years. Remember this is just a video game, nothing more).
Bought myself Sim City on Monday morning as a download code from Amazon. About 30% cheaper than buying it directly from EA Origin.
It was also 50% cheaper to buy the limited edition version of the Cities of Tomorrow expansion from GAME than to buy the regular edition direct from EA.
Anyway, I seem to have timed this rather well as today update 10 went live which, nearly a year after the games release, has finally given the game a single player mode that can be played offline with local game saves.
I’m actually quite enjoying it so far.
Last week I showed a recreation of the livery being worn by a number of Su-35S jets that have been delivered to the VVS (Russian Air Force).
I mentioned a similar livery was also applied to a number of new Su-34 Fullbacks, and here it is.
Fullback… to me, it will always be the Platypus.