* The first best shot ever harkens back to the old Microprose F-15 Strike Eagle III days nearly 20 years ago (!)..
Tonight I had an awesome experience on the Stallturn server during the DCS Fly-In that happened over the 30th/31st/1st. I was flying Black Shark 2 and had joined on the "Red" side flying a Ka-50 out of a crappy little FARP (Torba). The server was using a large scale war map with three different areas of the map as action points. You can fly for either Blue (A-10s and Ka-50s) or Red (just Ka-50s). Over the past few days people have been hoping in on both sides and it has been great fun.
This evening I grabbed a Ka-50 out of Torba and headed southeast down the valley looking for targets. The server had already been up for 3 or some hours, so most of the battlefield in that area between Torba (Red FARP) and the three airports around Tblisi (Blue bases) was pretty well picked over. I love the challenge of creeping up at low altitude up to the Blue side bases and engaging their defenses. You have to get close enough to be in Vikhr range (a little under 7.5 KM) while avoiding the SAM and AAA sites, as well as any A-10s that happen to know you are there. Usually they won't know until things start blowing up on the airfield.
I was able to creep around to the west side of the 3-airport region there and camped out about 6KM from Tblisi and started systematically taking down the air defenses: Strellas, ZSUs, and a tank or two. Of course, all the smoke and flames clues the Blue side in that they are being attacked. So one of the blue players (Rider!) came out hunting for me. He circled around at low altitude with his AIM-9 uncaged and found me when it picked up a heat signature. Doh! I didn't know he was looking for me - my first clue was the rip of 30mm canon fire all around me. I took a round or two and it knocked out my Shkval. I knew the gig was up now that I'd been discovered. I dropped my nose out of the over and slammed the collective back to power forward toward the base. I had 3 Vikhrs left, but this wasn't a time for finesse. I was armed with the big rockets on the inside pylons (S-8s?) so I zoomed across the field rippling them off at the infrastructure targets. The whole base was up in flames. All the while Rider is making runs on me with his canon. I manage to see him a few times and try to get my canon on him in boresight mode, but I never did get any shots into him.
We pirouetted around the sky at low level over Tblisi until a fixed ZSU emplacement that I hadn't destroyed blotted me from the sky. It was only a matter of time before Rider was going to get me..so I'm sure he was disappointed to have his kill snatched from him <G>...
For some reason I thought the KC-135 would make a more impressive boom when I hit it with a Vikhr:
My final resting spot.
So..(we are getting to the best shot..I promise..) I chat with Rider a bit and we relive our air-to-air engagement - a lot of fun and a great stick this Rider guy. The map is pretty well picked over as I mentioned before..and he asks if we are flying out of the crappy FARP up at Torba.
I can smell revenge on the horizon. So he heads up toward Torba (only a 4 or 5 minute flight in an A-10 but a 20 minute haul in a Ka-50) with the intent of bombing it all to hell.
I spawn in to a replacement Ka-50 at Torba and initiate the auto-start sequence which takes about 3 minutes. Another Red player (Voxt) spawns in about a minute later. I type to Rider that it is very tense sitting there on the pad waiting for an LGB to come crashing through the roof at any minute. He asks if my laser warning receiver is going off yet <G>.
As soon as the auto-start sequence is complete, I pour the coals to it and leave my poor buddy Ka-50 on the other pad - he still has about a minute to go before his start will be complete. I know Rider has got to be very close. I nose over and accelerate away hoping to avoid detection. As I get about 5KM away I see explosions back at the FARP. I raise my nose hard, pedal turn 180 degrees and set up a hover. I didn't even have time to mess with the ABRIS or anything and I turn on my Shkval sight and start scanning the FARP. The other Ka-50 is still on the pad with smoke all around him, but he does manage to get airborne. There are two A-10s making passes on the FARP and I struggle to lock one up with my Shkval, which has an agonizingly slow slew rate compared to the high rate required to lock on to a passing fast mover. After a couple attempts I'm finally able to lock on one of the A-10s with the Shkval set to AIR mode. It does a great job tracking and the target passes at about 7KM and I fire two Vikhrs at him. I peer through the HUD looking for a telltale explosion, but I don't get anything. Because I had to pitch my nose up to acquire the targets and get a launch cue I'm not drifting backwards rapidly and my range increases beyond Vikhr range. Then I see an A-10 fill my HUD as he comes right at me. I switch to boresight cannon and lay down as much toward him as I can. His rounds hit me and take out one of my engines. I dump the nose over and pick up speed to keep flying and jettison my weapons. As I crawl back toward my FARP another stream of 30mm pours into me and Rider gets his kill.
So a few minutes later I'm chatting again with the players. I had assumed I shot my Vikhrs at Rider, but it turns out, I had actually targeted "mjayz30", the other A-10 in the wagon wheel. He reports that I must have put some damage on him because his jet is having severe control problems. A couple of minutes later, he crashes and I get credit for the kill.
7.2 KM showing on the Shkval and my Vikhrs are on the way. It's hard to make it out, but I'm locked on an A-10 there..
What a great night of multiplayer action. Thanks to stallturn (and Moa) for putting the server up and being patient with us when we griped about any disconnects. The server was rock solid tonight and I had no problems for the couple hours I was on.