DCS F-15C Combat Guide for Beginners



Originally published at: http://www.mudspike.com/dcs-f-15c-combat-guide-for-beginners/

Mudspike contributor Bryan AKA Sryan first added this excellent DCS F-15 Guide in our forums and we felt it deserved the biggest audience possible, so we’ve added it as a Reference article here. Thanks Sryan! The F-15 is a great plane to get started with about air combat in DCS world. Taking only weeks to…


We were all really impressed with how good this forum post was that we asked @Sryan if it was ok to turn it into an article for our Tutorials and Reference section of the main site. Luckily he said ‘Yes!’ as we really had no back-up plan if he refused :slight_smile:

Anyway, it’s the same brilliant post but with my clumsy proofing of it - if there are any mistakes in it, then they’re all mine, so thanks to @Sryan for his patience and wanting to share this great resource. Cheers!


Truly great work.
Thank you @Sryan


Very nice work @Sryan ! I learned a lot, especially about the radar. Thanks for all the time and effort involved in putting that together.


Super nice job @Sryan and many thanks for @fearlessfrog for the nice formatting and conversion (easier said than done!)…

Great stuff…


I’m truly impressed, and continue to learn. I probably ought to do an AAR or write an article of my own, but I’m literally juggling water with one hand on my own business, and sneaking in flights and flight instruction is precious, much less writing about it.

  • Sryan is following me on twitch, and we’ve gone from a 3-screen-wide panorama to a 1-screen plus MFLD on the left to better ‘see’ the radar targets.

  • We’ve practiced ILS and IHS landings A TON. I was always careening off the runway. Now, I’m learning how to aerobrake, pump the toe brakes appropriately, and apply a little aileron if necessary above 50 knots. I remember from my days flying sailplanes that you literally had to fly the plane to until it quit rolling, and even then, had to wait until the groundcrew had secured a wing, just in case there was a sudden gust. That probably applies here. I have to focus on FLYING. Follow the beam, follow the markers, read the instruments, keep the speed just right, etc. It’s a lot of work.

  • I’m now understanding WHY y’all always had TWO bags of gas under the wings, instead of one, or instead of just flying ‘clean’. Going Supersonic is important for missile kinetics and fleeing aircraft. And I’d say my AIM-120C hit rate is just a bit over 50%. I’m DEFINITELY learning how to bank away from incoming missiles after an attack, and use the TrackIR to better effect.

Again - now I’m out of time and maybe a cuppacoffee short, but Sryan is giving me my money’s worth, and most of all, he’s making it FUN. After, what, maybe 10 years since I last completed a flight sim campaign (F-15E, so maybe it was almost 17 years ago), I’m feeling more competent. Not CONFIDENT, but COMPENTENT, which is a nice step.


It is a superb article and kudos to MudSpike for making it an easy to find reference resource. :thumbsup:


Thanks for the kind words everyone! Wich one do you want to see next?

  • MiG-29S
  • Mirage 2000C
  • Su-27/33
  • Su-25A
  • other

0 voters

I am personally gravitating towards the MiG-29. It’s quite undocumented. I know about the poor FM but that will all change soon enough. I understand in advance it may not be as well received as the Eagle guide purely because of the size of the playerbase for the F-15 compared to the MiG-29. But it’s something I like to do. It’s going to be hard though. There are currently no English cockpit mods ( Maybe @komemiute can help me with that? :smiley: ) And I don’t even know if you can mod the HUD at all on these older FC3 aircraft.

I can do other aircraft as well. I own all except for the C-101, the Albatross and the Dora. But for most aircraft I would find it hard to add much that you can’t already find in Chuckies guides.

DCS F-15C Combat guide for beginners by Sryan [very IMG heavy!]

As soon as I’m through with the skins I’m all yours, @Sryan. :wink:


Does Ricardo’s mod no longer work with the MiG cockpit?


I’m not even sure how to install those old FC1/FC2 mods into DCSW. I thought all those mods where broken with the advent of the 6dof cockpit for the Fulcrum. It seems to community has chosen anyway! I’m writing about the Mirage right now.

Prefer the F-15 guide in PDF format? Get it here


Hey gang, I know it’s been a while, but I thought I’d file an update.

I am having so much fun, that this sim is interfering with my weekend honeydos and homework. I’m taking off and landing safely, I’m learning how to prioritize targets, and while I am NOT very good at close-in dogfighting, I’m using TacAirView to study the aftermath and see where I might have made a different move.

First, Sryan has literally made the whole thing understandable, and before we both went on a summer hiatus, we actually did our first group-flight. He also built a perfect mission with about six scenarios that I’ve now gone through several times, along with altitude warnings, to help me learn how to deal with SAMS, etc. We started off with flying courses and trying to keep the HSI lined up with the course pipper on the HUD, something I’m still working on to this day. Then, he added the goal of shooting down two helicopters, which required different modes on the radar, and, honestly, distance to help the missiles track appropriately. The next mission dealt with a reconaissance Mig at high speed, requiring leading with missiles, and then came the 1-on-2 mission, with some pretty good AI Mig-29’s or Su-27’s. If the missiles don’t hit and I merge, well, that’s where I’ve lost.

What’ve I learned? Well, I’ve learned that SPEED is critical, especially when I’m launching missiles. If I can get my speed up to about 1.2 mach or higher, and get the target inside of about 30 miles, that first hit rate is usually pretty high.

Second, I need to practice with the different modes on the AIM-9. I’m just not as successful with that missile as I am with the AMRAAM.

With the choppers, I almost always go to STT to try and keep the -120 on the target, and I tend to go to ‘Hi’ energy mode.

Flying at military power above 15,000 feet is odd. I can’t really climb, because the bird will slow and stall. Thus, the need for the two external tanks.

I’m flying with 6x120’s and 2xAIM-9’s. I’m not lazy, I just don’t know how to make the 9’s work as well. I use the 120’s even in semi-close range.

Firing a 120 blind with no radar lock, but pointed at an oncoming target, sometimes actually works!

I think my X-55 is sticky.

The green spring - opinions?

That’s about it. I MAY be ready for some MudSpike multiplayer stuff, if you’re gentle on me. And Sryan - you get through your exams, and we’ll set up some more lessons.

Again gang, THANK YOU. I feel like I’m living the dream from the first time I assembled a Monogram 1/48th Scale F-15C, and fell in love with this bird. That was in 1977!!


Thought I’d throw this in there. I try to read up on the aircraft in DCS as much as possible.



Nice article @whareagle. Did not know the kill ratio of the F6F was that high. I suppose that a lot of folks would have the P-47 or Mustang in that group. I had the honor of chatting with Gunther Rall one time and in his opinion it was the Bf-109F. Hard to argue with any of these. The F-15C undoubtedly deserves a place on that list, if not at the top.


Very very useful, is exactly what i searching for !!!
I am a DCS beginner … thanks !!!


Very happy to hear it helped you out!


Youtuber Jabbers created a nice video on notching, applicable to all planes, partially based on some of the contents in my guide. Go have a look!


Thank you so much for this article - it’s a really nice piece of work. You have a gift for teaching that I hope you are using to good effect in other domains :slight_smile:

I am a consultant engineer, halfway through his career and I still found your explanation of notching a real delight to read. It really makes a beautiful link between the physical concepts and their relevance for flying.

Another highlight for me was the relevance of the different airspeed indications.

Thanks again!