After watching Top Gun yet again, I had the urge to don my Oculus CV1, climb into my Obutto cockpit (complete with Xrocker gaming chair and flight controls) and engage in battle over Hormuz…..
Back in 1993 there was a game released on the pc’s of that era (think Amiga 500, Dos PC’s etc) called Combat Air Patrol under the Psycnosis label. I never had the opportunity of playing the game back then as I did not own any of those formats.
Fast Forward to 2016 and Combat Air Patrol 2 is in production but at Early Access stage (although it was actually released in June this year). The aircraft of choosing is a Harrier Jump Jet and your Battling grounds are over Hormuz (any training is done over Hawaii – launching from an Aircraft Carrier).
If you love flight sims , combat and VR , I would definitely say give this ago (you’ll also be supporting the developers). Please remember this is at Early access stage at the moment, so if your expecting the same level of detail as DCS or FSX then disappointment will be the order of the day (after all, both DCS and FSX have been around for some time now with the latter being around for far longer).
If this sim is not for you then read no further, if however you find yourself wanting to try this out then here’s a few suggestions to make things hopefully a bit easier….
The first thing I recommend you do is map the controls (I had to invert my throttle control) and try to fly the plane in Non VR mode (make sure you save your mapping – there is a save button that does pop up eventually – it took quite a while before I realised it was there and everytime I loaded CAP2 up I was mapping the controls due to thinking the save ability wasn’t added yet). Once you get used to taking off (make sure you increase the nozzle angle otherwise your not going to go anywhere), then click on the properties tab of CAP2 within Steam and ensure that you select ‘vrbeta’.
CAP 2 in VR is awesome, but I am running a GTX 1080 (MSI Gaming X version) so am able to max out all the graphical settings. There are some visual glitches but I would like to think that in time as the game develops all these glitches will be fixed.
Now, I’m used to flying most jets in simulators (DCS, FSX, Aerofly 2), but flying the Harrier proved Challenging (especially trying to take off! Multiple attempts were required before I finally managed to do it).
The game has the xbox one gamepad as a default but if you’re an avid flight simmer like me then I am sure you won’t begin your flight without your trusty flight stick, throttle and pedals.
And on a another note…..
As we all know, the CV1 doesn’t support roomscale as yet (but I’m pretty sure it wouldn’t be hard to achieve with the right hardware), still, that hasn’t stopped me getting off my seat and walking around (although its limited). However, in CAP2, its pointless trying to get up and view the outside of your jet as the software itself won’t display anything, you just look like you’ve reached the limit the minute you go too far to the right or left from the cockpit view. In title such as DCS and FSX (with flyinside), I can physically step out of my aircraft and view it as if I was beside it, the models are rendered perfectly.
It's still in Early Access, so expect a few bugs, but the flight model is fantastic, the cockpit looks great in VR and the maps are varied.
Ratings in depth
Oculus Rift Experience