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Two Weeks in War Thunder (Simulator Battles)

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I had tried War Thunder a while back, and quickly decided that mouse-controlled aircraft just weren't for me.  Even though there was a simulator mode, it was never populated, and so I never was able to give it a try.  However, someone I know had just started the game, so I decided to reinstall it to play with them.  Mouse-controlled aircraft still weren't my thing; but I was surprised to learn that the simulator battles were much better populated than before, so I've been flying them for the last few weeks.  Some observations:

 

1.  The game mode, Enduring Confrontation, is a lot of fun.  In most ways it resembles the multiplayer maps in IL-2, except that objectives are dynamic to a degree, and you are often presented new objectives over the course of the map.  This gives the game a much greater feel of being a living battlefield than a static map.  I hope that with Air Marshal, IL-2 can capture some of this feeling.

 

2.  AI-controlled flights of bombers, attack aircraft, and recon aircraft act as objectives to be protected or shot down by players.  Bomber formations usually consist of 6 to 8 aircraft, which is cool.  These provide less skilled players a way to contribute meaningfully to their side's efforts to win the map.

 

3.  Player skill is significantly lower across the board.  In Rise of Flight and FC, I'm decent in the WW1 aircraft, but in IL-2 pretty awful in the WW2 birds.  In War Thunder simulator battles I've been clubbing people.  Your average "good" pilots in WT are about as good or maybe below my own skill level, while the rare and exceptional ace-type dudes tend to resemble the typical russian you're likely to encounter in IL-2 multiplayer (which is to say, much better than me!  at least in my timezone).  It's weird to me seeing my own flat scissors and lag displacement rolls resulting in a firing solution with regularity.

 

4.  The aircraft all fly a bit easier, with less engine management, but by and large still fly different enough that you know what you're flying by the feel of the aircraft; and if you've flown it in IL-2, still feels generally right in WT, and the planes mostly perform as you would expect them to.

 

5.  WT doesn't use icons in simulator mode, but instead shows dots within a certain distance, which transition from dots, to silhouettes, to aircraft models as you close distance.  At first I assumed that this would significantly decrease my ability to bounce people.  In practice, this wasn't the case.  All in all, I got roughly the same proportion of successful bounces vs guys that saw me.  I think this is a just a function of the overall lower skill level I mentioned earlier.  However, with AI bombers CAP aircraft, and friendlies visible with dots, it is a lot more difficult to determine what is a threat and what isn't, even though you can see them.  That objectives will have you operating in all areas of the map doesn't help either.

 

6.  The simulator mode uses a system of "spawn points" which you earn by performing tasks on the battlefield.  This gives players a reason to fly the "lesser" aircraft available for the map, rather than everyone choosing the top performers.  Landing the aircraft refunds the points, while they are lost if you exit or crash the craft otherwise.  A downside I noticed though, is once you are able to select one of the best types, it is unlikely you'll have to downgrade again, while others, unless flying the bare minimum rigs for the map, will have a hard time getting to the best planes.  I'm not sure if I like this system yet.

 

There are other things I noticed about the simulator battles, but those are the things that most stood out to me.  Has anyone else here tried them out?  What were your impressions.  For me, IL2 is far and away the better simulator, but the WT simulator was pretty cool, and a lot of fun as well.

Edited by hrafnkolbrandr
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The FM in War Thunder is so awful there’s no point in it. 

Honestly this game looks better too for what that’s worth. 

I’d rather play a sim with more historical authenticity and accurate aircraft. It’s better to have 40-50  well done aircraft than 300 poorly done ones. 

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I have never played WT but I will defend it anyway :) .  It is what it is what it purports to be - light entertainment.  I seriously doubt that anybody into GB will be pulled away by WT.  What I do think is possible is that somebody dipping their toes into the water with WT might progress to GB.  If WT gets people interested in WWII planes it's all good.

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Sure. War Thunder is perfectly fine as a gateway sim. An easy starter game that encourages players to seek out greater authenticity and challenge. After all the game that originally got me hooked on flight sims was IL-2 Wings of Prey. 

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My nephew likes WT and is interested in trying PC sims when he has a proper computer, so it has its place in things.

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Got WT for tanks and tried planes because they were there - got hooked and bought il2 bos. 

 

I still like WT because Mouse control is so well done and I can play it with friends who won't invest into proper sims. If il2's mouse control would work as well they would consider...

 

bur so it'll be wt occasionally :)

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7 hours ago, SharpeXB said:

The FM in War Thunder is so awful there’s no point in it. 

Honestly this game looks better too for what that’s worth. 

I’d rather play a sim with more historical authenticity and accurate aircraft. It’s better to have 40-50  well done aircraft than 300 poorly done ones. 

 

Lol, don't worry, WT isn't going to steal IL-2 players away or anything.  You're right though, in WT I saw such ahistorical behavior such as 109 pilots intercepting ground attackers instead of circling at 7000m like they should.  ;)

 

The FMs feel similar in a lot of ways to the FMs in the old IL2:1946.  Nobody claimed they were great.  It'd be unreasonable to expect the level of fidelity that BoX has in WT for what that game actually is.

 

I found it encouraging to see so many people playing the simulator battles over there, especially compared to a few years ago, because it means that there are more people getting interested in this genre.  Some of them may end up making the transition to "better" games.

Edited by hrafnkolbrandr

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I'm a WT Sim player.

I've tried to make the move to IL-2, but there are a number of reasons why it hasn't happened yet. 

First of all, I didn't realise my laptop was such a complete potato. It handles WT just fine, and generally does anything I ask of it without issue, so I assumed it would do okay with this game.

Come to find out that this game requires much more to run smoothly. Even the menu was glitchy, not to mention the seemingly abysmal FPS rate when I tried a quick flight. Someone suggested making some adjustment in the settings of my graphics card, and it made a big difference, but the game still doesn't run very smoothly. So I guess I need a new computer...  And I haven't even tried playing online yet. 

 

The second roadblock deterring me from getting further into these games may seem stupid, but it's a significant headache to me. You're control setup is so complex and complicated to configure, compared to WT. 

I get that it's for the sake of being more realistic, but there are so many more things that need to be mapped that I've never used before. Not to mention that I find lots of the same things needing to be configured in different parts of the menus.

It is just so complicated that I always waste an hour or two trying to set my controls. Nothing works the way I intend, and then I rage-quit without ever playing the game. I wish I could just somehow import my WT controls and they would automatically populate the appropriate places in the menus. I know that's stupid, but I've finally worked out a config that's good for me in WT, and I just want to mimic that here.

I've tried some quick fights a lot, and I can manage, but some things about the controls are just wacky and idk what I've done wrong. But also, not even just the controls; the missions are unclear and I can't figure out how to rearm when I land. 

 

Something else I've heard lots of people say is that it is generally easier to find populated games in WT. I've not tried to find an online game yet in IL-2, so idk how hard it is. 

And I don't really like the idea of having to learn navigation skills with a stopwatch or whatever. I know that it's realistic and all, but I'm just not interested. I like that WT has this "GPS map", so I can know where I am and just focus the fighting. 

 

Another thing that has been driving me crazy is that I can't get this game to open full screen. It always just opens as a window, and I can't find any way to change that.  Can someone tell me how to launch the game full screen?

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I am not an expert at IL-2, but I could suggest to try 2 things to get going ...

- set all settings to easy, invulnerability, aiming etc.

- use the 'A' auto key and let the game play itself (for the most part)

- the keyboard settings are not all vital that way at all

To me I have the opposite assessment ... to me, personally, WT seemed that counter-intuitive at the time that I immediately stopped using it.

I wonder what PC you have since IL-2 BOX, AFAIK, is not really that demanding compared to many other state-of-the-art PC titles. 

More experienced players / pilots here may be of greater help to you.

But of course, YMMV.

Succes.

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Wow! You played for two weeks in WT? 
 

I realized after an hour two of how they managed to crank out 50 times the planes as 1C does in the same given timeframe.

 

But I do respect your post. To each his is own and I guess War Thunder “is what it is” especially for those using it as a gateway to flight simming as being in IL2 posse I suspect your ambitions of it being a true sim as compared to a game weren’t all that great to begin with. 
 

Same reason I have delved into RDR2 for the PC now. Totally different animal naturally than IL2 but sometimes it’s fun just to break away now and then.*

 

*please don’t ever quote me on that - never said that - ever

Edited by BornToBattle

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3 hours ago, simfan2015 said:

- set all settings to easy, invulnerability, aiming etc.

- use the 'A' auto key and let the game play itself (for the most part)

I'll have to try to get on later for a little bit and do some more nosing through the settings/controls menus, because I honestly have no idea what you're talking about here..   easy, invulnerability, aiming,  'A' auto...  none of this sounds familiar. But it has been a while since the last time I got frustrated trying to understand the menus.

 

I don't even have any bindings on my keyboard for WT. Everything I need is on my stick and throttle. 

3 hours ago, simfan2015 said:

to me, personally, WT seemed that counter-intuitive at the time that I immediately stopped using it.

Would you care to elaborate on how it seemed counter-intuitive? 

For me, it still took some time, but WT's control menus are much more user friendly and easy to understand. Of course, that's probably because it's a simpler game and you need less bindings.

Easiest example I can think of is cooling systems or zoom. In WT, you control temperature with radiators, prop pitch, throttle. But in this game, depending on the plane, you have to operate multiple devices in order to correctly(realistically) control the radiators. Or zoom, there's like 5 different places in the menus to set zoom. 

Your experience is yours, and I'm not saying you're wrong if you think this game is more intuitive than WT. I'm just trying to understand how..

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I have a few hundred hours in WT, there is some thing I agree with @Bearchills but some confuse me.

Like for example, I´m amazed as well how smoothly WT runs, my PC is not even breaking a sweat on high settings!

Camera movement with head tracker feels extremely responsive as well.

 

For the confusing thing is the radiators, it seems to me you can have very similar radiator operation in both sims if you want. Lets take the LaGG, because I flew it a lot in both sims. So in IL-2 you have to control both water and oil radiators (expert mode), compared with WT, where the radiator & engine operation is automatic by default, but I usually just switch it to manual by press of a button, making radiator control very similar to IL-2. Sim mode.

 

Both WT and IL-2 have their own perks, so personally I tend to bounce between the two.

Edited by Leon_Portier

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21 hours ago, simfan2015 said:

I wonder what PC you have since IL-2 BOX, AFAIK, is not really that demanding compared to many other state-of-the-art PC titles.

I'm not super tech savvy, but I know that my computer is outdated. It's probably over 5 years old. It's time for a new one anyway because I want to get VR for these games. 

 

 

20190613_055237.jpg

16 hours ago, Leon_Portier said:

..I´m amazed as well how smoothly WT runs, my PC is not even breaking a sweat on high settings!

Camera movement with head tracker feels extremely responsive as well.

I tried this game again last night, and I'm pretty convinced that I really just need a new machine. It's disappointing that I can play WT perfectly fine, but I turn this game on and it's just a skippy glitchy mess the whole time.

I'm certain that I would be interested in spending more time figuring this game out if it would run smoothly. Even more so if I could have the amazing graphics I frequently see in gameplay videos on youtube. Guess I better start looking

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S!

 

 @Bearchills You need a better machine for IL-2. Check the requirements and go above Recommended, if possible. Want a flight sim to run well? Get the hardware for it. WT has a very light GFX engine, credits for that. But also has a lot of players, 20-30K players is frequent.

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@Bearchills

I´m not running the most high tech PC either, mine is at least 5 jears old too.

These are my PC stats and they run BoM, BoS and BoK perfectly fine. When flying near BoBP cities I get some stuttering while the buildings load.

CPU: i5-4460 @ 3.2 GHz
Grafikkarte: GTX 960
RAM: 8 Gb
Win7

 

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WT in Simulator mode is actually my preferred ww2 combat sim these days.

 

It's not only ultra smooth on my rather old rig - i5 2500 @ 3,3 GHz + GTX 960 4 GB GDDR5 + 16 GB DDR3, running Win 10 Pro 64 bit, but always full of interesting stuff to do in each mission.

 

The interface and the whole concept of rewards and so on is rather gamish, I agree, but I somehow have been getting acostumed to it, and enjoy it even more than I do either DCS or IL2 GB.

 

Given the simplified implementation of some systems, I find it great that some aspects of ww2 fighters and bombers are actually so well represented, and figures close to real data.

 

I also like the way damage is modeled, as well as pilot and overall crew skills - it's a very interesting idea!

 

Also, BoBP is perfectly unplayable for me online. Whenever I get into a server running that map it's a stutter fest, and it completely spoils any joy I could otherwise get from IL2 😕

 

Edited by jcomm-il2

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I came here after about 4 years of War Thunder (and about a decade of Aces High previous to that).  Spent almost all my time in sim mode in their "Enduring Confrontation" arenas after briefly starting out in their "Realistic Battle" mode.  Other than what others mentioned, here's some of what I don't like about WT: 

1) Bombers - Unlike fighters, bombers get third person view and air starts so they don't have to play by the same rules as fighters.   

2) Questionable flight models - The Spitfire FM's were revised last year to a supposedly more realistic one.  Result is they are unstable as heck, twitchy, and bleed speed like crazy when turning (and consequently stalling and falling out of the sky).  The developer's reason to adjust them was something along the lines of making the FM behave "correctly" in the mouse/instructor modes (realistic and arcade) where you don't directly control the plane.  The biggest adjustment for me here in IL2 is trying to get the Spitfire IX to slow down and stay slow to minimize blacking out.  Trying to keep up a stall fight with a 109 with your throttle completely at idle seems... odd. In WT, I'd have stalled out and crashed.

3) Prototype and "captured" planes - To make money, besides all the micro-transactions you have the choice to purchase premium aircraft.  Although they aren't completely fantasy aircraft, they do include prototypes or drawing board planes like the Me-264, Ju-288C, BV-238, Ho-229, XP-55, etc.  They also include "captured" planes like a US FW-190 and A6M, German Tempest V and P-47D, and Japanese F4U among others.  To me, none of these belong in a sim.

Some of what I do like about WT:

1) Easier to find opponents - In sim mode there are no enemy icons period, and friendly icons only appear around 200m or so.  Instead, you end up watching the little black dots that are what you see when aircraft are at long distances.  Much easier than very gray dots or clusters against blue-gray sky or almost any ground. But like others have mentioned, you can still sneak up on people. And it is still possible to lose planes against terrain at gunfight range, like C202's in the Sicily map. Arena maps are smaller also, so less time spent getting into action.

2) Graphics good enough for the fps - WT doesn't require a lot of tweaking to run acceptably for me (i5-6500 and GTX 960).

 

 

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Tried War thunder a few weeks ago, i should have known better with a name like War thunder! The FM is beyond redemption and that alone killed it for me. The graphics are ok for this style and type of game, but the actual game play is far too arcadey for me, in fact the whole game, the menus, the game play and graphics suggest its just a serious attempt at a basic arcade shoot em up in the air. Physics are none existent despite the claims of some of its advocates. Even if it was 100% free with everything unlocked and came with 500 'flyable' ( i use that term loosely!)  free planes i still wouldn't be interested in it.  I see some comments here relating to how smooth it runs on older systems and tbh that it seems is its one and only redeemable feature.

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21 hours ago, coltsr2 said:

Tried War thunder a few weeks ago, i should have known better with a name like War thunder! The FM is beyond redemption and that alone killed it for me. The graphics are ok for this style and type of game, but the actual game play is far too arcadey for me, in fact the whole game, the menus, the game play and graphics suggest its just a serious attempt at a basic arcade shoot em up in the air. Physics are none existent despite the claims of some of its advocates. Even if it was 100% free with everything unlocked and came with 500 'flyable' ( i use that term loosely!)  free planes i still wouldn't be interested in it.  I see some comments here relating to how smooth it runs on older systems and tbh that it seems is its one and only redeemable feature.

 

Have you tried it in Simulator - Full Controls mode?

It looks ( to me at least ), pretty plausible..

 

Alas... you can also play IL-2 GB with mouse, and simple FDM, and the result should be pretty much the same you get out of WT in Arcade / RB mode, although Arcade mode is even "more Arcade"...

 

With the years my interest has shifted from civil flight simulatio mostly to DCS ( ww2 ), then IL2 GB, and nowadays my only sim is WT.

 

It advantages for me over the previous platforms. I can name out stuff like being able to set the default ground adjustable trim tabs to better suite your needs for the flight regimes you use the most, this being restricted to aircraft that really had them, but also the MP communication system, simple but effective, including being able to call the attention of your team mates to a given zone or sending them a localized distress message. 

 

There's always action going on, no matter at what time I login. 

 

The crew qualification, the fact ( only recently also ported to IL2 GB ) that once you land you have to wait for aircraft rearm, repair and refuel, and that time depends on the level of damages suffered by of your airbase, among other features are yet good reasons for me to find a true thrill in playing WT.

 

Edited by jcomm-il2
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Yes i have it has definitely come a long way and it can be a lot of fun, i use a hotas thrustmaster A10 warthog with Satek rudder pedals so full Sim mode is the only way. I realise it will appeal to many people and i do like the aircraft it has, but it just doesn't feel authentic to me. Maybe am spoilt playing the il2series, 1946, FSX, X Plane 11 etc.  But yes it does have lots of great ideas and the scenery gives a great sense of action and variety and is highly detailed.   Funny thing is i keep getting drawn to it and have downloaded it off steam and then got frustrated with it, left it, then deleted it....then downloaded it again a few months back after seeing it again thinking that LOOKS amazing but once again the arcadey feel to it just doesn't do it for me. After seeing it again am thinking shall i give it another go?  Then i realise why i get so frustrated with it. Shame because in some ways it is actually better than il2 battle series with more variety and scenery variation, but its just too arcadey overall, plus i like to play offline which isnt an option with warthunder which is aimed at online only. I also dont like its business model and the way its geared at mini transactions all the way through it. If you do a search online for it you will always see people asking will it play with my  controller 360 or with mouse  which kinda sums the whole thing up.

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I see your point coltsr2.

 

Yet, for me it ended up being the best choice, even though I still find rather awkward all that system of golden eagles and silver lions and many stuff I'm presented with that I don't even bother trying to understand...

 

I feel ridiculous sometimes enjoying it so much, at my 55, and more than 39 years flying for real :-)

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26.11.2019 в 18:31, LLv34_Flanker сказал:

 But also has a lot of players, 20-30K players is frequent.


no. WT Simpulator battles have only 30-40 players total.

usually WT Sim Sessions have 5-20 players, avarage is about 12.  

compared to 250 players online in BoX and 80 players at a server.

 

FM model is "planes on rubber bands". slightest movement of a rudder or an elevator causes 10 seconds of crazy oscillation.

 

Propeller torque on I-16 is crazy and changing too much with throttle  value

 

 

 

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If you come from a Real World Flying Background War Thunder is annoyingly Bad and Limited. My English Vocabulary unfortunately doesn't have the Words to describe how bad it is.

 

Essentially, all Planes handle like Flying Wing Jets with misadjusted Trim Tabs. The Engines sound like they are 5 Seconds away from Death and the general Engine Modelling, as a Petrolhead, is so astonishingly bad, that it drives me Mad.

 

You can't really recreate any Real World flying in WT.  Il-2 on the other Hand feels right at home. I can do anything I can do IRL, especially when it comes to just general Airmanship.

This probably describes it the Best. WT is what Non-Flyers think flying is like, while it is complete gibberish for actual Flyers.

 

 

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I have to say I have never been the least bit interested in WT. From the very first time I sat my eyes on it, it came across as arcade like. One of the things that attracted me to RoF was the fact that I would crash constantly just doing basic stuff in the beginning. Heck, just learning how to take off in a 109 without crashing took far too many times than I cared to admit to. In the end, it was worth it. Too many people say the FM are very realistic, so learning how to fly on IL2 is the next best thing to flying for me (at 50, it is not likely I can learn how to really fly). This is why I play on the expert mode. And yes, I had to crash land a lot too because my engine pooped out on me. I rather spend an hour fiddling with the controls to get it how I like it than simply jump in a game and play well right away. If DCS was not so darn expensive and ore demanding on your computer, I'll probably try that as well. But WT, no thanks. IL2 provides all the fun I need and want in a game. 

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On 12/15/2019 at 9:23 AM, 6./ZG26_Klaus_Mann said:

If you come from a Real World Flying Background War Thunder is annoyingly Bad and Limited. My English Vocabulary unfortunately doesn't have the Words to describe how bad it is.

 

Essentially, all Planes handle like Flying Wing Jets with misadjusted Trim Tabs. The Engines sound like they are 5 Seconds away from Death and the general Engine Modelling, as a Petrolhead, is so astonishingly bad, that it drives me Mad.

 

You can't really recreate any Real World flying in WT.  Il-2 on the other Hand feels right at home. I can do anything I can do IRL, especially when it comes to just general Airmanship.

This probably describes it the Best. WT is what Non-Flyers think flying is like, while it is complete gibberish for actual Flyers.

 

 

I disagree... and I do come, and am at, rw flying for 39 yrs...

I don't see, all summed up, much difference, other than some ground physics simplifications, between the best models I've tried in WT ( simulator mode and realistic controls ) and IL2 GB. Actually I do prefer the caricatures of some ww2 fighters as they're portrayed in WT, and I definitely prefer it's immersion in EC mode and even in the many SP missions we can play...

 

There are features I'd like to see ported to DCS and IL2, like the possibility of setting ground trim tabs where they are available and save that configuration that will then become the default one when starting the flight in WT, or nill it and re-aply whenever required.

 

Damage model looks ok to me, communication is great even using their limited but effective menu, and the fact that aircraft visual identification is much better than what it is now in IL2 or ever was in DCS is yet another plus.

 

If you talk about DCS, then yes there's a big difference, for the better, in details of the flight dynamics, engine and systems simulation between it and both IL2 and WT, but then all of it's modules take ages to get to final shape, and all evolves so so slowly in the assets and modules development that I've given up waiting...

 

Edited by jcomm-il2

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starting from a fun iOS game called Sky Gamblers 2, I moved to war thunder last feb. It was my first "real" sim. A couple of months later I came over to IL2 and haven't looked back. I play probably 2 or so hours a night, pretty much just practicing gunnery and maneuvering in QMB.
It was definitely my gateway.
WT was fun enough, above all the versatility of the control mapping might be its best feature.

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