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Author Topic: Ka-52 TA Impressions
Member # 3762

posted 04-29-2000 11:52 AM     Profile for Tomac   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
Okay, I've had TA for a couple of weeks and have finally completed several combat missions as well as both instant action missions. I've been using ZeroG's improved FM and it makes a *big* difference (thanks again, ZG!)
The manual: I've seen worse but they left out a lot of good info that otherwise will be learned through painful experience. Optimum weapons ranges would be nice. How about the drop parameters for the 500kg bomb? Explanations & listings for some of the voice messages from bitchin' betty that I sometimes can't quite make out?
Graphics: excellent, especially since I was running at 800x600 with my Celeron [email protected]/TNT setup and 1280x1024 since I upgraded to a Celeron-II [email protected]/TNT2 (yes, I want a better video card but that was all current finances would allow... )
Sensation of flight & altitude is superb down low, I can zip along the canyons at 300kph & 10m alititude without needing the instruments to keep from crashing (btw, if you cut a turn too close you *will* lose a weapons pylon, I'll email that screenshot to anyone who wants to see it...)
Avionics: good but somewhat difficult to access quickly in some instances. For example, if I want to see both MFDs simultaneously I have to be in the standard cockpit view and then pan down to see them. A "glance down" control would be a great help for the MFDs & damage lights. Yes, you can access the full-screen MFDs but only one at a time and there's no provision to go directly back to the HUD-only mode from the full screen MFD. All the MFD screens provide the info required although it appears the ground radar mode can spot targets right through mountains (unless I'm getting a datalink feed from my other helos).
Enemy AI: needs difficulty settings although the current level isn't bad, just a little weak.
Sounds: Weak spot, even with DirectSound disabled there is occasional stuttering and voice comms somtimes seem to clip the very first part.
Wingmen AI: Good, they perform they're assigned tasks adequately and voice aknowledgement of orders is very good so you know they've received your orders. There's a broad variety of orders to affect everything from their speed and altitude to which targets should they attack. (Game Commander is *great* for reducing HOTAS workload and really adds to the immersiveness when you can give voice commands to your wingmen and they reply with voice aknowledgements...)
Weapons: Very good. Sound great, look good although sometimes the explosions are a little overdone but I like 'em (amusing to see a puff followed by a column of black smoke kilometers away). One thing I like is the usefulness of the 80mm rockets. In many helo sims unguided rockets are very difficult to aim properly and realistic or not I like being able to use the rocket pods to good effect. The 30mm cannon is very useful and it takes some time to learn its traverse constraints (btw you can see the empty casings eject from the bottom of the helo when firing...)
Mission Planner: Good, nothing spectacular. Allows you to move and edit waypoints to an extent but doesn't allow you to check on the fuel/ammo/damage status of your other helos. You can't add additional flights in the combat missions, I hope you can do so in the campaign missions.
Resource/crew managment: Haven't played with this too much but it looks good (gee, do I take Viktor who has better skills or do I take Alexandr who has more combat experience and is less likely to freeze up in combat?) as well as resource management in the campaigns (if you're too profligate with your ordnance you could find yourself out of ammo before the end of a winning campaign...) A nice touch is that you can turn these management features off if you don't want to micromanage it yourself.
FM: I have absolutely no idea what a helo should "feel" like when flying, much less a contra-rotating design like the Ka-52. However, compared to the other helo sims I've tried it "feels" good, nimble enough to be responsive but stable enough to fly yet still requiring your attention at all times.
What does Ka-52 still need? A mission editor and random mission generator. Variable difficulty levels. Better arrangements for viewing MFDs & damage panel (perhaps add to HUD-only view?), being able to check at least the damage status of other helos in the Inflight Map (also ammo & fuel would be good as well). W/O giving voice aknowledgements of target priority selection. Minor: being able to change the names & callsigns of your men as some of us have difficulty memorizing them in Russian!
Overall I feel that Ka-52 is an excellent "mid-level" sim that the hardcore may find lacking. Ka-52 comes the closest to replacing my beloved Gunship!(Commodore64) and Gunship2000.
PS- Lest some of you think I'm ignoring EECH, I'm not, just waiting for it to be released here in the States...

Posts: 108 | From: | Registered: Mar 2000  |  IP: Logged
Member # 4271

posted 04-29-2000 02:38 PM     Profile for Finarvas   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
Thank you for this excellent "mini-review", it's always better to know what people think of games before bying them than just look at the manufactor's (or distributor) homepage.

Oh and btw.. the TNT2 is a very good card, most people seems to think that you absolutly need a geforce nowadays but that's not true.

It's more fun to compute!

Posts: 52 | From: Varberg, Sweden | Registered: Apr 2000  |  IP: Logged
Member # 3006

posted 04-30-2000 02:00 PM     Profile for Clydewinder   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote

I agree with your assessment of KA52, the sim is a lot of fun. I love the flight characteristics of the chopper, in a lot of other sims it is near impossible to do a sideways flyby of a target. With the KA52, you can whiz by at high speeds sideways and strafe the enemy with heavy rockets! The limited turret traverse makes the game interesting, much more challenging than the "hit anything anywhere" gun on the Longbow Apache. One thing I wish Simis would add in the patch is a MFD "cheat" view with the MFDs visible in the HUD-only view like Apache-Havoc, or Falcon 4,or EF2000, or, now that I think about it, just about every other sim that there is. Runs very nicely 1024x768x32 with all details maxed except Terrain Geometry, one notch shy of maximium.
Celeron 500, 128meg, TNT2

Posts: 97 | From: Milwaukee, WI USA | Registered: Feb 2000  |  IP: Logged

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