This is my favourite DCS module. Even with the release of early access F/A-18C which I have been waiting years for the Viggen has a feel that really makes me think I am in a late cold war jet.
It’s easy to start up and fly, difficult to learn but not at all frustrating. The biggest hurdle which happens to be the most fun for me is the navigation computer (the C37). It’s an early form of digital age computers and you can clearly see the first steps into the modern technological age we find ourselves in now. I have started to build a mission that I think captures the atmosphere of the cold war. Of course it’s low level and it’s fast as the AJS37 thrives in this sort of profile. I’m using high drag bomblets on targets that should give some spectacular secondary explosions because admit we all like a good explosion………come on.
The weapon used for this particular mission is the RB-15F. It’s a fire and forget missile with a range of 70km so I can stand off and keep out of range of the ships surface to air missiles.
The Viggen is a sophisticated aircraft. It is incredibly advanced when you consider it’s age. It joins the analog age to the digital age seamlessly. You have a computer where you punch in codes to set up the parameters for the missile. There are as many as 30 different codes just for the RB-15F and much more for other weapon systems. It seems complicated at first but with a little practice, you begin to see the genius in its simplicity.
The Naval Strike mission has to be one of the hardest and most dangerous to execute. This wonderful write up on the doctrine of such an attack is a fantastic read and clearly shows how hard it is to take on. You have to swarm the ships defense systems to such an extent that it overwhelms it in the hope that a weapon gets through.
Today I am practicing an attack in just a 2 ship formations so I’m not holding out on getting any hits but want to be able to complete the attack phase without getting shot down.
We line up and wait for a cold early morning start. Fully loaded with 2 RB-15F’s.
After takeoff, gear up and wait for the ground radar to kick in and stabilize.
Once over the sea, we lower our altitude in an effort to avoid the ship’s radar and start to increase speed. Setting up the radar and inputting the codes for the missile.
We detect the ships on our radar. After setting up some attack waypoints, safety off, and fire. Time to turn and get the hell out of there.
The missiles reduces altitude at a set point and starts to search with its own radar.
The Russians ships defense system obliterates the missiles with just seconds from impact.
The Russian fleet sails on. I go home. A successful training mission.
Launching 2 Saab RB-04E Anti-Shipping Missiles from the AJS-37 Viggen in DCS has to one of the most satisfying simulation experiences I have had in a long time.
The Viggen is from an age deep in the cold war.
The technical systems within the aircraft such as the radar are archaic compared to the modern kit we have these days. However, this is where the satisfaction comes from. Heatblur simulations that made this have done an exceptional job of capturing that era. When I sit in the cockpit in VR you can almost feel the chill of the time. Everything has that 1970’s early 80’s feel to it. It reminds of cockpits I sat in at air shows when I was a kid.
The challenge of working these systems and then getting it right is a joy. You have to input codes by pressing fat buttons to a flickering series of numbers that remind me of the Apollo age. The eerie green glow from the radar that bathes the cockpit in this light while you lean in to try and pick up a black dot on the radar return is thrilling while you’re running in on an attack run.
This really is one of those aircraft that you have to learn in small increments and I have to say as you may have already guessed I am enjoying it immensely.