So...about virtual groups and the larger sim community

Not sure if this belongs in the Flight Sims section, but these days the larger community seems off to me when it comes to virtual groups. Back in the day when I flew BMS online, we had tons of virtual fighter wings and virtual fighter squadrons. All of them were clearly indicated as being an online game community by using “VFW” or “VFS.” Even if the group wasn’t trying to replicate a real-world FW or FS, the V was added out of common decency to let people know it was all game stuff.

Now with the Hornet and upcoming Tomcat, there’s a lot of virtual CVW around. That’s cool and all, but so many times I have seen or experienced confusion between real CVW and virtual CVW. Just the other day with my CVW-8 Scooter video I was accused of copying the virtual CVW-8…and apparently someone else actually had copied the group so there are in fact two virtual CVW-8s floating around on top of the real CVW-8. After that incident, I posted a PSA on another sim forum suggesting that groups use ‘vCVW’ to avoid all this confusion and become more in-line with the community standards that have existed since Falcon BMS (if not earlier). Maybe even make a directory of existing groups so there aren’t two vCVW-8s or ten vCVW-5s. That way everyone’s happy.

And the responses have all been “whatever we do what we want” and an assortment of ad hominem attacks via meme.

Has the larger sim community/online groups always been this toxic? I don’t recall things being this way back in my BMS days, and one of the reasons why I’ve grown to love Mudspike so quickly is because this community reminds me of the good old BMS days when most people were polite and rational. These days on certain forums, if someone so much as posts a quick guide video showing how to do something, the discussion devolves into an argument over refuel probe length or some other pedantic topic.


So…what is the difference between “real CVW” and “virtual CVW”? I mean I thought I was clear until this post. Or asked another way…are you in a real carrier wing and some dude from a virtual wing busted your nuts for copying his virtual group?! That would be right up there with the Hipster thread found elsewhere on this forum. :grinning:


When I migrated to DCS, I decided to avoid all that with a 20 foot pole.
Even in FSX, I found the online community carrying it’s weight in toxicity.

There was some justification in rules around servers running with collisions - hitting the host’s plane would dump the server, as re-spawning required a re-connect. Most learned simply to turn those off, or find a second machine to host using the control Tower (for those with Deluxe or Gold editions).

Other servers were ready to kick you over things like:

  • Forgetting to turn lights on.
  • Not talking to the guy playing tower properly.
  • Taxiing slightly faster than what they though appropriate.
  • Loading the F/A-18, as clearly you were then some insolent child.
  • Not knowing your aircraft perfectly, and flying as such.
    And so on…

The server I flew with, we would load collisions off and “spawn in air near host” off, then fly immediately a few hundred miles away. Anyone wanting to join, could ask where we were and route themselves to us. Others, could be left to their own accord.


Dude from a virtual wing accused me of copying his wing when I simply titled my video ‘CVW-8’ because it depicted jets of VA-81 and VMA-331 on a CVW-8 deployment in the 1960s.

I never experienced all of this until the Hornet was released, and DCS opened up to more “mainstream” players. Even before the Hornet DCS had virtual groups like the 476th vFG, then all of a sudden when naval aviation entered the fray common courtesies went out the window.

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Oh I see. Yeah I’ve seen a little bit of that in Blue Flag. I played “magic” (GCI) on the server a few weeks ago. There were half a dozen F/A-18 guys all from the same squadron who opted out of using comms. No doubt they were talking to each other. And of course they are totally within their rights to play by themselves. But I found it a bit snobbish. Definitely not my scene.


Yeah, I’ve always seen that insular attitude in certain groups, even from back in the BMS days. It seems to have gotten a bit worse these days though. Sometimes I don’t blame them. I remember when the 476th vFG tried to contribute to the community with their Battle Book and the forum thread on it got derailed by the community instead of “hey thanks for the valuable info.” When you try to feed someone and they just bite your hand, it makes sense to stop trying to feed them.

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I’m pretty sure the only organization with a legal standing to care about such things is the real CVW-8 and I am confident that they do not care. If anything, they would think the video was pretty cool.

The only US naval aviation unit that I know for a fact, actually cares about about such things is the Blue Angels and that is only because people try to sell unauthorized Blue Angels stuff.


Saw that. Honestly, there’s a reason that forum is read only for me.

JAR from the Stingers had one going for awhile, but I think he ultimately deleted it because people came in and derailed it with the same attitude you encountered in your PSA.

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On one hand it’s good to know I’m not alone…for a little while I was starting to worry about my mental stability thinking that I was the one in the wrong but somehow unable to realize it. On the other hand it sucks that the community is like this.


Yes the ED forums are a bloated mass of trolls and rude people now. Its a shame and I really think the rep system helped a lot at least you could vent your spleen with a key press for negative rep :smirk:


Hey man, c’est la vie. People are people.

Also, this is not rainbows and unicorns we’re simulating. By its very nature our hobby will draw in boys who do boyish things such as clanning up and ‘othering’ the others. It’s after all bad-ass flying machines that can only be tamed by the Best of the Best! right? :wink:


At the end of the day, it’s a game, so play it and call it what you want.


It is not only a thing in flight sims.
I do tabletop wargaming (Warhammer Age of Sigmar) and you have the identical discussions there. The competitive guys vs. the casual guys, the experienced guys who don’t want to play against the newbies that don’t have their rules memorized, and so on.
And both sides accuse each other of not doing it right. Heated discussions on Internet forums, additionally fueled by trolls and people who think sarcastic memes are funny, and a community becomes toxic. Or overpoliced by one of the sides, which is as bad.

As for flight sims:
For example I personally don’t enjoy flying with people who don’t use TS (exceptions are OK, such as our friend @Franze , or just a guy with a broken headset that day) because it makes communication with them so much harder.

I once watched a TacView track of myself from an MP mission in which I flew the A-10. It turned out that almost all the “IR SAMs” I had been furiously dodging (and that ruined some bombing runs because I had to jink and dive) were just the Mavericks from another A-10 who had been flying around at unusual altitudes firing them without “rifle” calls and generally not communicating.
When playing with other guys I want to play with them, using tactical formations and so on.

But on the other hand I don’t want to join some club that requires me to adhere to a schedule or overdo the realism, including having a rank and having to do check rides to qualify for missions.
I am fine with all those existing, but they are not for me.

Back when I played Battlefield (2 I think) there was a Commander slot, and the best rounds I ever had in that game were those in which the players miraculously did what the commander and their squad leaders said. I also had the honor to be commander a few times in such games and it was awesome.
Some servers had almost never a commander, but when there was one, and he wasn’t acting really silly I did what he said, it was part of the game. Same goes for human ATC or AWACS or FAC in DCSW. If there is one I think it is polite to include him.

…I don’t play a lot of MP as you might have guessed already. I rarely meet people who like to play the way I do. Most of the times I join a server people are either lone-wolfing or flying only in their squads.

Communities and squadrons fighting over who is the “real one” also has been a thing forever.
To me those are often the people who take it way too seriously though.


I feel you there. It’s hard to find like-minded people who are middle-of-the-road: Not newbies but also not OCD about procedure.


And of course people thinking their way is the right way. Such a horrible thing. Wars have been fought over that you know :wink:


The problem isn’t that you think your way is the best (that’s just natural), the problem is trying to force it on others.


We’re hiding on Hollo Pointe, typically but not guaranteed 6pm-12am EST, Mon-Fri.
Weekends are variable.

All skill (or lack there of) levels are welcome.
Discord usually involves me and @Franze discussing aircraft, weapons or our in-flight call outs, tactics and strategy.


Back in the day when Air Warrior and Warbirds were my sims of choice, online squadrons were very respectful of their real life counterparts.

That was 20+ years ago though. We live in a whole new world today it seems. Now, get off my lawn! :wink:


…and I just snorted coffee onto my keyboard. Thanks for that. :rofl:


Nah, that’s why we’re all here, instead of over there.